Chapter 34

"Oh, how adorable is this?" Sparkle exclaimed, holding up two mini military jackets.
   "Wow! They even have the baby's initials on them. Remind me to give Bush a raise." Michael laughed as he admired the Jackets that his fashion designer created.
   Hopping in the bed behind Sparkle, Michael gently leaned her back onto his chest as he proceeded to massage her stomach.
   "I can't wait until my mother and Bill find out that the babies will have their first names for middle names," she smiled.
   "Me either Spark-- they've been our biggest supporters and mean so much to us. The babies are going to be spoiled rotten by them."
   Picking up a baby pacifier that Sparkle placed down beside her, Michael stared at it and frowned. "I should have surprised you with a baby shower instead of asking, but regardless, we've been getting a ton of gifts!" He remarked as he surveyed all of the presents Sparkle had opened from family and friends.
   "No... You shouldn't have. I don't like being made a fuss over and besides-- with all of the craziness we've had to endure this past couple of months, when would you have had time to plan one?
   "You're right, baby... Well, at least we can relax now. We have the entire place to ourselves! I gave everyone the next couple of days off." He exhaled deeply as he leaned the back of his head against the bed's headboard.
   For the first time since their vacation in Seychelles, they felt completely relaxed.
It had been a torturous last couple of months for the two, but they were happy to have it all behind them now.
   No sooner than they fell asleep while resting together, Sparkle screamed Michael's name as she squeezed his hand tightly. "Ouch, Spark! What was that for?" He shouted, sitting up straight.
   "My water just broke! We gotta get to a hospital," She cried.
   "Are you sure? The babies aren't due for another two weeks." He replied calmly.
   Just before the trial, Sparkle had one final check-up where Dr. Greene told her that the babies weren't due for the next few weeks.
   "Ack! Remind me to find another Doctor after the babies are born! Dr. Green has been slipping with things during my entire pregnancy," she yelled.
   Hopping out of bed quickly, Michael propped a few pillows behind her back as he paced back and forth."OK, baby-- um... Shit! Let me think! Everyone is gone from the ranch-- Damn it! I even gave Bill and Wayne some time off!" He spoke in frustration.
   "Oh, God, Michael! Please help me. I feel the first baby making it's way out!" She sobbed in pain.
   Picking up the phone hastily, Michael called up Dr. Greene.
   Feeling relieved when the doctor answered the phone, he blurted, "Hi Dr. Greene! This is Michael! Sparkle's water just broke. It's only a twenty-three-minute drive to the nearest hospital, but Sparkle says she feels the first baby coming out! What should I do?" He yelled, panic, filling his voice.
   "Sounds like the babies are on their way, Michael! You're gonna have to deliver them yourself."
   Looking stunned, he replied shakily. "What! I can't do that! I've never delivered a baby before. Yet alone two!"
   "Calm down, Michael! Yes, you can-- I want you to call the hospital and then call me back. I'll walk you through this." Dr. Greene replied encouragingly.
   After hanging up with Dr. Green, Michael tried to comfort Sparkle as he called the hospital.
   "Everything is going to be OK, Spark, but you're gonna have to trust me." He stated firmly while helping Sparkle to remove her undergarments.
   "I trust you, Michael... I trust you!" She screamed while tugging at his shirt.
When Michael called Dr. Greene back, he was in a much better state. He knew that the babies and Sparkle were dependant upon him, so he had to remain strong.
   "OK, I'm ready, Dr. Greene," he replied smoothly, as she began to direct him.
   "Just kill me, please! I can't do this, Michael!" Sparkle shouted.
   "Come on, baby-- Stop that! I need you to be strong! Keep pushing; the first baby is almost out."
   "I am pushing Michael! Arrr! I'm never having sex with you again! She screamed in agony. "
   "Stop yelling nonsense at me, Damn it and breath!" He shot back! "Now push... The baby is halfway out."
   Within ten minutes, the first baby was born. As the baby cried loudly, Michael cut the umbilical cord and laid her safely on the bed.
   "Come on, Sparkle, one more to go! Give me one big push, OK?"
   Taking a deep breath, She gave one good push, and the second baby slid right out with ease.
   "My God, they're perfect!" He exclaimed joyfully.
   "Is it over? Please tell me it's over, Michael!"
   "Yes, sweetheart... It's over-- you did amazing." He replied softly.
   "Can I see them?" She asked weakly, feeling completely exhausted.
   "Yeah, of course, just give me a second."
   After Michael finished cutting the second baby's umbilical cord, he placed both babies on Sparkle's chest as he cleaned them off. "Welcome to the world, Stella and Marcus-- you're so beautiful." She cooed sweetly through tears.
   "I'm so proud of you, Sparkle! You have no idea how happy I am." He spoke tenderly, kissing her on the cheek.
   "No baby-- I'm proud of you! Thank you for delivering our babies safely." She replied softly.
   When the paramedics rushed into the room, Michael let out a deep sigh.
Even though all of his staff were off, he felt grateful that he had one security guard manning the front gate.
   "Hello Mr. Jackson, did everything go alright?" One of the paramedics asked as the others tended to Sparkle.
   "Yeah, yeah-- I believe so... Oh shit! Would you excuse me please?" He replied abruptly.
While delivering the babies, Michael had become so focused on the task at hand that he dropped the phone.
   "I'm sorry, Dr. Greene! Are you still there?"
   "Yes, I'm still here, Michael and congratulations!" She laughed. "Sounds like you did a great job, I'll let you get back to the paramedics now."
   Glancing over at Sparkle and the babies, he blinked back heavy tears as his heart filled with gratitude.
   "Thank you for all of your help Dr. Greene, I'm truly appreciative for all you have done." He replied humbly.
   After getting off the phone, Michael returned his full attention to Sparkle and the babies, as the paramedics checked their vital signs.
   "You're a strong woman Mrs. Jackson! Giving birth two one baby is hard enough, but two without any pain medication is kick ass!" The paramedic laughed.
   "Thank-you. I didn't plan on having an epidural, but I also had no choice," she replied with a wiry smile.
   Pulling up a chair to sit down, Michael tenderly caressed each baby's cheek. "How are my two angels doing?" He whispered as Sparkle rubbed his back.
   "You did a great job, Mr. Jackson, Since Sparkle and the babies seem to be fine, we'll be getting on our way now." The paramedic remarked cheerfully.
   Once the paramedics were gone, Michael said a silent prayer of Thanks as he doted on their two precious bundles of happiness.

***
   Over the next few days, Michael and Sparkle enjoyed caring for the babies alone. In hindsight, Sparkle was happy that Michael gave the ranch staff off, allowing them to bond with their babies without any distractions. When Bill and Wayne arrived back to work, they were pleasantly surprised.
   "Joker! Why didn't you call us?" Bill asked in confusion when Michael informed them that he delivered the babies by himself.
   "Well, I didn't exactly have time to do that. Sparkle started having contractions during the trial, but she thought it was just the babies kicking around. Shortly after, she went into labor," He explained.
   During their conversation, Sparkle's mom appeared. Both Michael and Sparkle wanted to introduce the babies to Bill, Carol, and Wayne at the same time.
   "Hi Mother Carol, how are you feeling?" Michael asked warmly, giving her a big hug.
   "I'm feeling great, sweetie; I can't wait to see my little grand-babies." She gushed.
   "Come on! Let's go then... I don't want to keep you all waiting much longer." He shouted gleefully.
   When they entered the room, Sparkle was singing softly to the babies while they slept soundly. "Hi everyone, I'd like for you to meet Stella Carol Jackson and Marcus Bray Jackson." She smiled.
   Wrapping his arms around Sparkle, Michael interjected. "We hope you don't mind, but we named the babies after you. Me and Sparkle thank-you for supporting us, especially when times got rough."
   "Aww-- no problem, sweetheart. You and Sparkle deserve to be happy. I'm very proud of you both. When everything seemed to be going wrong, you two stood steadfast in your love for one another." Carol replied tearfully.
   "Ahh! I raised you well Joker-- but all teasing A-side, I'm proud of you two. I still can't believe you delivered the babies all by yourself." He quipped.
   Staring up at the sky, Michael ran his hand through his hair. "God, I'm glad everything went OK! That was the hardest thing I've ever done in my entire life."
   Patting him on the back, Wayne chimed, "But you got the job done, Michael-- not everyone could have done what you did."
   "Thanks, Wayne... and by the way-- how would you like to be the babies Godfather?" Michael smiled.
   "You already know the answer to that! I'd be honored to!"
   When Stella began to cry, Michael picked her up and began rocking her gently in his arms. "Don't cry, sweetie, daddy, is here-- shh." He sang to her quietly.
   As Sparkle's mom settled down beside her, she whispered in her ear. "Michael is a good man, baby; I'm happy that you gave him a chance."
   "I know Mom-- I'm glad I did too." She replied quietly.
   "Oh! I almost forgot! I made these for the babies." Carol expressed excitedly, as she produced two pairs of rhinestone baby booties and mittens likened to Michael's famous sequined glove.
   Holding up the gifts for all to see, everyone sighed a collective 'aww' as Sparkle gave her mom a big hug.
   "I can see it now! You're going to be just as bad as Michael when it comes to spoiling them, aren't you?" She laughed.
   "You know it, baby!" Carol replied humorously.
   After everyone took turns holding and admiring the babies, Michael kindly asked everyone to leave the room so that they could be alone.
   Pulling Sparkle into his arms, he kissed her deeply.
   "Wow! I can't believe it! In one month... It'll be the anniversary of when we first met. It's so amazing of what can happen in a year." She smiled.
   "Yes-- It's so incredible, baby... Last year it was just the two of us, and now we're married with two beautiful babies." He beamed in elation.
   "Yes, Michael-- I know... I'm now a firm believer of that old saying, 'The holidays are the most magical time of the year!' I love you, sweetheart."
   As Michael's heart burst at the seams with happiness, he gazed deep into Sparkle's eyes, kissed her delicately, and then replied, "But I love you more."


The End.

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