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"Sorry," she sighed, "I forgot to put it on the list."

"Well," mused Terry, "I'd better make a run to the store. Is there anything else we forgot?"

"I could do it," volunteered Abby. "After all, it was my fault."

"Nonsense," insisted Terry, "you stay and help Jake finish the chocolate chip cookies." Terry grabbed his coat and smiled at Jake. "Keep her out of trouble while I'm gone."

As the front door slammed shut, Jake turned to his wife.

"It must have been nice growing up here," he sighed.

"I guess so," replied Abby, with a shrug.

"Your childhood pictures are a far cry from mine," confided Jake. Then he said something that surprised Abby. "I hope our baby looks like you," he wished out loud.

"Since it's a boy," responded Abby, "he'd do better to resemble you."

"Are you sure it's a boy?" asked the expectant father.

"You've asked me that, before," she sighed. "Is it so hard to accept?"

"I can't let him go though the same hell I did," said Jake. "No child deserves that."

"He won't," Abby replied, confidently. "I know you. You love God too much to do that to someone else-- especially to your own son. It takes a terrible kind of man to hurt a child that way."

"Abby, would you make me a promise?" asked Jake. "Promise me that if I ever do anything like that to any child, then you'll do everything in your power to lock me up and throw away the key. I don't care what prison it is-- just make sure I'm put away behind bars."

The seriousness of the request startled her.

"You have my word," she promised. "But, you shouldn't live in constant fear, Jake. 'A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit,'" she quoted. (Matthew 7:18) "You're a good tree. The fruit of your walk before God is good. Your son will be a blessed little boy if he grows up to be like you."

Jake silently gazed into her eyes, drowning in similar pools of blue that John had lost himself in with Izumi. Abby could see the love in his eyes, and her heart began to race. Leaning forward, Jake gently kissed her lips. When it was over, he stared at her in surprise! It had only been a small kiss, but Abby could feel the great love that was behind it. Then Jake kissed her again, this time trying to put his arms around her. But, it was too much for him, and he quickly retreated.

"I'm sorry," Jake awkwardly apologized. Then they kissed again, careful to keep their hands to themselves. Abby could barely feel the floor beneath her. She had never thought this would come, today! But, as Jake whispered in her ear, "I love you," she knew her heart could not contain any more joy than she was feeling at that moment! "Thank you, God," he sighed happily, taking a step back to calm his breathing before his broken ribs REALLY started to hurt. As he leaned forward for another kiss, Terry walked in.
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