Emma played around with the food in her plate, thinking on how to tell Max the one news she knew he would rather not hear. That she was pregnant. 

She felt his gaze on her and she looked up to his concerned eyes. 

“You okay babe?”

She nodded and forced a smile. 

He was doing well. Doing so well, and now she was going to spoil everything. For three months, he had not used his hand to hit her. It might seem small to people, but it was the longest Max had gone without beating her. 

She had contemplated a lot of things since she discovered she was pregnant. She could tell him when they were in public. She knew he wouldn’t beat her in public, but she had tried it before, and it was worse when she got home, because the time just helped to build his rage. 

“Max.”

She said slowly, her voice small, and her heart hammering. 

She looked up at him. 

“Yes?”

She swallowed, wondering how she would put it, and hoping that he wouldn’t lose it. 

“I am pregnant.”

She didn’t say it rushed. She said it slow. However she said it, Max would have heard. 

The silence that prevailed was deafening. Her heart was pounding in her ears, and she wanted to run away. She wanted to run away from the beating that was sure to come. 

Suddenly, her thoughts changed. Max had not hit her. She looked up, and knew it was a mistake as she did that action, as Max slapped her. 

She stood up immediately, and was brought to the floor by another hit from Max. 

On the floor, she looked at him. His eyes were dark with rage, his lips were pursed in silent anger, His jaw ticked in rhythm. His hands were in tight fists, and in few seconds, he opened it, then closed it in the tight fist again, as if flexing it. 

All these she observed in less than a minute as another blow landed at her side. Instinctively, she used one hand to cradle her stomach, and another to cover her face. She began to move back, trying to get away from him. 

He followed her manancingly, and the height that she loved so much was something she now hated so much. 

“When did you know?”

His voice was gruff and she swallowed three times successively and clenched her teeth. She didn’t want to reply, but she knew that if she didn’t answer him it was more beating. 

“Two weeks ago.” 

“Two fucking weeks ago and you didn’t tell me!”

His voice sounded like it was booming, and Emma was filled with a urge to retort, but she knew it would just fuel his anger. 

Time ceased to exist as he beat her mercilessly, and hit her wherever he could. 

                                 *

Max watched his wife, Emmas whimpering limp figure on the floor and as soon as he had exhausted the anger in him, he begun to feel filthy, and dirty. He watched as she cried, and the only thing he felt now was hatred. Of himself. 

He thought about the several things he could have done. He could have just walked away. He could have gone to the room to cool down, but he admitted to himself that there was no way he could not beat her if he remained in the house. 

He could have left the house. 

He walked over to where she was laying amd he saw as she moved back ward. 

Filled again with overwhelming filthiness, he swallowed. 

“I’m not going to hurt you babe.”

She didn’t reply, and he carried her and took her to the room. He laid her on the bed and went to prepare the bath. When he was done, he carried her to the bathroom and washed her tenderly. He took care of her, treating her very gently. He massaged her body, and when he was done, he carried her to the room, cleaned her body with a towel, and put her in a night gown, then cradled her close to his body when he was ready to sleep. 

When she wasn’t sleeping, he sang a lullaby, and within a minute, she was asleep. 

                             **~**

It was a month and week from that day, and now, just like it had been ever since that day, Max got up and begun packing away from the office. He knew what he had done was bad, and she knew she was going to leave him. She probably wasn’t telling him because she was unsure of his reaction. It took a week for Emma to get stronger, and after that, life continued. None of them brought up his bearing her, or the cause of it. Her pregnancy. 

Their baby.  

Max had thought it through, and he had begun to realize that he was going to become a father. Slowly, the fear he had held on to for long had begun to dissipate. He wanted to talk about it with Emma, but he didn’t know how to bring it up. 

She still cooked for him, they made small talks, she still kissed him when he was leaving for work, but they both knew that it wasn’t exactly the same. They had to talk it out, but it seemed like they were both trying to avoid it. 

In the night, they still slept on the same bed, and sometimes, even made love. It was all normal, except it really wasn’t. 

Normally, after two weeks most, Emma would adress the issue of his beating, talk to him, and everything would be better, but now, it wasn’t so. Four weeks and a week, she still hadn’t said anything. 

He knew something was going on, and now, what he knew would happen sometime was already happening. She was going to leave him. 

She hadn’t said it, but while leaving today, he saw a box and a duffel bag and she had said she wasn’t going to work. 

He didn’t wait to talk to any of his colleagues as all that was on his mind was getting home before Emma left. 

He got home in an hour, and came out of the car. There was no moving vehicle in sight, but it didn’t mean she still wasn’t moving. He entered the sitting room, and saw the box and bag beside each other, filled with clothes he was sure. 

Eyes still fixed on it, he heard the foot steps of his wife and he looked up to see her holding a big envelope. He was right. She was going to divorce him. His world was crushing right before him. Emma walked towards him and hugged him, and kissed him lightly on the lips. She must have noticed something different because she asked. “Max? You look pale. What is it?”

“You’re leaving me.”

No one of them spoke, and Max continued. 

“I know I have done wrong. I know I shouldn’t have lost control like that the other time for something so precious as a child just because of my fear. I still hate myself for it.”

Emma opener her mouth, preparing to talk when Max beat her to it again. 

“Don’t leave me Em. Please. I_I would have talked about this earlier but I wasn’t sure how to. I_”

He paused and swallowed. 

“I have begun seeing a Christian Marraige counselor ”

Emma made a surprised gasp. Not because he was seeing a counselor, as it was something she had told him endless times to do, but because he was seeing a Christian one. 

She nodded. “That’s good Max.”

“What’s in the envelope?”

She looked at the envelope, then at him, looking unsure. 

He watched as she tentatively moved back from around him.

“It’s the baby’s ultrasound result.”

He nodded. “Can I see it?”

He saw the surprise in her eyes as she stepped closer to him. She handed it to him, and she watched as he looked at it, his eyes marvelled. 

That night, they talked a lot. About the baby, about the help he was seeking, and they made promises to each other. It was a very emotional moment for the two of them. She wasn’t going, only wanting to stay with Kris, her girl friend for a while, and she was still going to go, though it would be later. They were going to work on their new born bond. 

Emma pushed her back closer to Max’s front, and he held her close, caressing her stomach. 

“Forever and always baby. Forever and always.”

————–

Hi everyone, this is my response to the daily prompt, filthy. I know it’s long, so I want to thank you for reading till the end. 

Did you like it? 

Feel free to share your opinion(s) in the comments. 

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