As time went on Catherine and Vincent settled into a happy life in their brownstone. Catherine changed jobs shortly after Vincent moved in. She had decided even before they became lovers that coming out of investigations and moving into the Crime Victims Unit was the best thing for both of them. She would not be working directly with Joe any longer but she knew that it was safer.
Vincent was extremely happy with the way his life had turned out. He was living above the tunnels with the woman of his dreams. The only thing that grieved both him and Catherine was that Father still refused to come around in his opinions. Vincent went below daily as he had promised to take care of his duties. But neither he or Father had spoken a word to each other since the night Catherine had run from Father's chamber in tears.
The tunnel patriarch had expected the tunnel residents to be angry about the discord between him and Vincent. And he thought that they would blame it on Catherine but he had soon discovered after Vincent moved to the brownstone that they in fact laid all the blame squarely on his shoulders. They were very angry with him for the way he had treated Catherine. In fact, after Vincent left the tunnels very few of the tunnel residents were even speaking to him.
They were saddened that the only time that Vincent came below was to work in the lower tunnels or teach his classes and that Catherine did not come below at all. One afternoon while he was reading a book to some of his younger students little Cathy stood and moved over to his side. He looked up from the book and looked at the little girl who was his Catherine's namesake. "Are you all right?
She shook her head as her tears started to fall. Vincent closed the book and pulled her onto his lap. He rocked her tenderly as she cried. "Shh now tell me what's wrong."
One of the other children, Jeremy spoke up. "Are you and Catherine mad at us?"
Vincent looked at the young boy then moved back and looked at the tear-stained face of the little girl in his arms. "Is that what you all think?" All the children bobbed their heads. Vincent sighed and shook his head. "Neither Catherine or I are angry at any of you."
Little Cathy sat up and looked up at him. "Then why don't you come to see us anymore?"
Vincent was not sure how to explain everything to them so he decided to approach it in a different way. "Why do you think we don't come below much?"
Rachel, who was about little Cathy's age stood. "My mommy told me that you and Catherine don't come to the tunnels because Father doesn't want you together."
Vincent smiled. "Your mother always tells you the truth, doesn't she?"
Rachel nodded. "Yes, she said that telling the truth is better than lying."
Vincent looked at all the children. "Rachel's mother is telling the truth, Father is upset that I have a new life with Catherine, but I don't want any of you to worry we will settle everything very soon."
Little Cathy smiled. "Then you will be coming to visit more?"
Vincent hugged her tightly. "Yes, we will be coming to visit more.
At that moment Jamie entered the chamber with Mary. "Okay everyone it's time for you to take your naps." All the children moaned as they rose.
Vincent chuckled and shook his head. "Go on do as Mary tells you."
The older woman smiled. "Jamie is going to make sure you all get to your chambers."
Jamie moved aside and let them pass. "Come on let's go." As she started to turn to the chamber entrance she looked at Vincent again. "Tell Catherine I will come visit her soon."
Vincent stood. "She will love that." Jamie turned and followed the children from the chamber.
When they were gone Vincent sat down on his bed again. "I had no idea that mine and Catherine's absence was affecting the children as much as it is."
Mary walked over and sat down beside him. "They love you both as much as the rest of us and they miss you."
Vincent looked up at her again. "We would come visit but after what Father said to Catherine the last time we were here we just can't."
Mary took his hand. "We all know that Vincent and we aren't angry with you or Catherine."
Vincent released her hand and stood. "I don't want everyone angry with Father."
Mary stood and moved up beside him. "We have a right to be upset with him, after all he's the one whose stubbornness caused this mess."
Vincent looked at her again. "You're a wonderful woman."
She blushed. "I love you and Catherine both."
Vincent reached out and pulled her gently into his arms. "And we love you."
At that moment there was a message on the pipes. Mary moved back. "What's wrong?"
Vincent listened then shook his head. "I promised some of the men that I would help with some table repairs in the great hall this afternoon."
Mary smiled. "Catherine's at work?"
Vincent nodded. "She is working on a big case that Joe is prosecuting."
Mary smiled. "She loves her new position."
Vincent moved over and picked up his cloak. "Yes she's very happy preparing the cases for court and trying them instead of investigating."
Mary moved over beside him. "We were all relieved that she changed jobs."
Vincent looked at her again. "How did Father react?"
Mary smiled. "He was happy about it even though he would never admit it to any of us."
Another message came over the pipes at that moment. Vincent chuckled. "I should be going or they will continue to bother everyone with those messages."
Mary giggled. "Yes and we don't need that." She kissed his cheek then they both left the chamber heading in different directions.
Later that night Vincent was sitting on the sofa in the library of the brownstone. He looked outside and noticed that it was very dark. Looking at the mantle clock he saw that it was almost 11:45. Marking his page he closed the book and rose and placed it on the table beside his favorite chair, the one that had been in his chamber at his writing table. The table itself was in the corner of his and Catherine's bedroom. They both used it as a desk now. He used it for writing in his journals and Catherine used it when she brought her work home.
At that moment he heard the sound of a key in the lock at the front door. "Vincent, love are you here?"
He walked out of the library into the foyer and helped her remove her coat. "How did your day go?"
Catherine sighed. "It was a bit more hectic than I wish."
He could hear in her voice how tired she was. "Come I will fix you something to eat, then I want you to go upstairs and soak in a nice warm bath."
Catherine shook her head. "Joe ordered Chinese food from Lynn and Henri's restaurant for us."
Vincent smiled. "How are they doing?"
Catherine sighed. "They are fine both are busy with the restaurant and Lynn is almost ready to have the baby."
Vincent nodded. "She is due in a few weeks right?"
Catherine giggled. "Yes and Henri is a nervous wreck."
Vincent chuckled. "Aren't expectant Father's to be supposed to be that way?"
Catherine giggled again. "Yes I suppose they are."
They both fell into a silence after this conversation. They were truly happy together and loved that they finally were able to be together on a more permanent basis but both felt that there was still something missing in their lives. Catherine secretly dreamed of having Vincent's children but she had never brought the subject up. She had discussed it with Mary, who encouraged her to talk to Vincent. Vincent also wanted children. He and Joe had talked about it one night when he and Jenny had come for dinner. The women were in the kitchen while Catherine was preparing their dinner. This left Joe and Vincent alone in the library. Joe told Vincent that since his and Jenny's marriage months before they had been trying to have a child. Vincent was happy for their friends. But Joe immediately sensed that something was bothering him. When he asked Vincent about it he confided to Joe that he wanted to have children with Catherine but he was unsure whether she would want children with her career going so well. Joe smiled at his statement and told Vincent that if he wanted to have children with Catherine he should tell her.
Catherine's voice brought Vincent out of his thoughts. "Sweetheart, are you all right?"
He blinked a few times when her voice penetrated his mind. "Yes, I was just thinking."
Catherine put her hand on his cheek. "It must have been something pretty serious."
Vincent turned his head and kissed her palm. "It's nothing for you to be concerned about." He assured her.
Catherine sighed. "I think I am going to take you up on that idea for a warm bath."
Vincent smiled. "It will relax you so you can rest for work tomorrow."
Catherine shook her head. "I don't have to work tomorrow since we worked so late on the case Joe told me to take tomorrow and Monday and have a nice long weekend with you."
Vincent chuckled and put his arms around her. "I'll have to thank him for that."
Catherine giggled. "Well I think part of his good mood came from the news he got at lunch from Jenny."
Vincent cocked his head. "Oh what is that?"
Catherine smiled remembering the way Joe had come running into her office after returning to work that day. "They are having a baby."
Vincent hugged her. "That's wonderful, we'll have to have them come for a celebratory dinner soon."
Catherine nodded. "Yes I suggested it to Joe but it can't be for a few weeks with the case and Jenny is working on a book tour for her new writer."
Vincent chuckled. "How is Devin doing with that?" Since Devin's return into their lives and his move to the mountains to take care of Charles he had started writing fictional stories around some of his adventures.
Catherine giggled again. "From what Joe said Jenny told him that Devin is taking it all in stride."
Vincent shook his head. "She hasn't seen his stubborn side yet."
Catherine smiled. "I told Joe to warn her about that."
At that moment Catherine noticed a strange look on Vincent's face. "Are you all right?"
He nodded. "I'm fine, why don't you go on upstairs and take your bath, and I will bring us up some wine."
She was not quite convinced that he was all right. "Are you sure?"
He pulled her close again and kissed her forehead. "Yes now go on." Catherine moved out of his arms and walked up the stairs as Vincent turned and headed into the kitchen for the wine and glasses.
A few minutes later he entered the bedroom. Placing the tray down on the writing table he walked to the bathroom. He slowly opened the door and looked inside. Catherine looked very relaxed as she lay in the water. Her eyes were closed and Vincent thought she had fallen asleep. He turned to leave the room again to give her a few more minutes when she opened her eyes again. "I'm awake."
Vincent smiled. "You looked very peaceful."
Catherine shifted in the water. "Just very relaxed."
Vincent nodded. "I brought our wine."
Catherine looked at him again. "Why don't you bring it in here and sit with me until I'm done?"
"I'll be right back." He closed the door once again as she warmed the water a bit more.
After a few seconds Vincent returned. He opened the door then reached for the wineglasses that he had placed on the bedside table by the bathroom door. "Here we go, my love."
She smiled as she took it. "Thank you this looks wonderful."
Vincent sat down on the floor beside the tub. "You look more awake than when you got home."
Catherine sighed as she sipped her wine. "I feel more awake now."
She put her glass down on the side of the tub and reached for Vincent's hand. He clutched her hand in his and squeezed. "Tell me what's bothering you?"
He shook his head. "Nothing really."
She gave his hand a squeeze. "I know you better than that."
He sighed and put his glass on the side of the tub alongside hers. "While I was below today I was reading a story to the younger children and they asked me if you and I were angry with them."
Catherine's eyes widened. "Why would they think that?"
Vincent shook his head. "Since we haven't been below to visit they thought they had done something wrong."
Catherine sighed. "Oh Vincent, I'm sorry."
He looked up and saw the tears in her eyes. "Catherine, none of this is our fault; Father is the one being stubborn and not accepting our relationship."
She looked down again. "He hasn't changed his mind at all?"
Vincent sighed. "No, Kanin told me that he's still telling everyone that our relationship is not going to last and that you are going to end up hurting me."
She shook her head. "I wish he'd give me a chance."
Vincent got on his knees and put his hand under her chin. "We're together and happy that's what they told me was important. Not what Father thinks about the situation."
She smiled. "We have wonderful friends."
Vincent leaned forward a bit more and kissed her lips. "Yes we do."
A little while later they came out of the bathroom. Vincent was drying his hair. "I wasn't planning on joining you."
Catherine giggled as she sat down at her dressing table and picked up her brush. "You have to admit we enjoyed ourselves."
Vincent dropped the towel from his hands into the hamper just inside the bathroom door then walked over and took the brush out of her hand. "Yes we did."
When he was done he put the brush back down on the table. "Come lie with me for a while."
She looked up at him and smiled. "Only if you hold me close."
Vincent took her hand and helped her to her feet. "Always, my angel." They lay down on the bed and Vincent wrapped his arms around Catherine as he leaned back against the headboard. "Catherine you remember earlier when you told me about Jenny being pregnant?"
She lifted her head from his chest and looked at him. "Yes."
Vincent cupped her cheek. "Have you ever thought about us having a child?"
Tears came to her eyes as she sat up. "Yes, I've thought about it quite a bit lately."
He smiled. "So have I."
Catherine's breathing became shallow and her heart started beating harder in her chest. "What have you been thinking?"
He tenderly cupped her cheek. "I want to try to have a child with you."
Catherine threw herself in his arms with a cry of joy. "Oh Vincent, I was so afraid to bring it up I thought you would tell me no."
He held her close and rocked her gently. "I would have refused before we became lovers, but I want to have a child with you very much."
She leaned back in his arms and cupped his cheek. "We will."
He smiled. "You sound very sure." She snuggled close to his chest. "I'm very sure of us so I'm sure of our love for one another and that's why I am convinced that we will create a child together."
Vincent tightened his arms around her. "Shall we get started?"
Catherine giggled as he started kissing her. "I thought you'd never ask.