More Than Paper

by Andariel

Disclaimer: Not mine.

Notes: Inspiration to attempt writing this pairing came from Wendi. Inspiration for how to write the pairing came from Caro and Thamiris. hugs Originally posted to my livejournal on 8/3/03.

As Pete pulled his Mazda into the garage, he patted the breast pocket of his suit jacket. He had a moment of panic, thinking that he'd left the envelope on his desk, but the reassuring crinkle of paper met his ears. He turned off the ignition and slid out of the driver's seat with his briefcase in hand. A quick foray into the backseat to retrieve the bouquet of gardenias and irises, and he walked into the house.

Pete inhaled deeply, taking in the scent of lasagna and garlic bread. He strolled into the kitchen with a smile, expecting to see Lana there, but the room was vacant. He retrieved a vase for the flowers from a cabinet and ran water in it. When he'd placed the arrangement on the table and there was still no sign of his wife, he called out, "Lana, I'm home!"

Her voice echoed down the stairs to him. "I'll be down in a minute!"

Pete loosened his tie and leaned against the breakfast bar. Retrieving the envelope from his pocket, he slapped it against his palm. Paper signified a first wedding anniversary, and it had taken Pete a while to come up with something fitting. He grinned at the idea of Lana's reaction to the gift -- a week rental of a cabin in the Pokonos. Just the two of them with no fax machines, no cell phones, and no demands from Lex regarding the campaign. That was the real gift, truth be told, and it had been far harder to arrange the time off than to find the perfect getaway spot.

"Penny for your thoughts."

Pete looked up, the welcoming smile dropping into a look of awe as he took in the sight of his wife in the doorway. Her hair was piled loosely on top of her head with tendrils hanging down to frame her face. The shimmering peach sheath dress enhanced the honey gold of her skin, and Pete wondered for the thousand and first time how he'd ever been so lucky that she'd fallen in love with him. "Thoughts? I'm not sure that I'm capable of them right now." He crossed over to her, sliding his hands possessively around the curves of her hips. "You look gorgeous."

Lana flushed with pleasure, raising her hands to his shoulders. "Flatterer." She met his lips with gentle, sure pressure, and as the kiss deepened, her fingers kneaded his shoulders. Pete sank into her, reveling in the comfort and soul deep connection he always felt in Lana's arms. They say friends make the best lovers, and the two of them were living proof of that.

The timer on the stove buzzed insistently, and they reluctantly pulled away from each other. With an efficiency born of familiarity, they had the table set and food dished up in a matter of minutes. During the meal, Pete relayed the latest machinations of Lex's opponent in the Senatorial campaign, and Lana provided insight from a press agent perspective that Pete believed would be invaluable to their response. Lana still refused to work officially on Lex's campaign, though Pete and Lex both had tried to convince her to change her mind. The response was always the same -- "Call me when he's running for President and I'll be there."

Pete didn't know if she chose the phrasing because she believed it wouldn't come to that, or because she knew it would.

While they sipped iced tea after dinner, Pete handed over the envelope. "Happy anniversary, baby."

It took quite a lot of convincing to make Lana accept that Lex really would leave them alone for a whole week. Once she believed it, she threw herself into Pete's arms. Sitting on his lap in the kitchen chair, she kissed him and gave little squeaks of pleasure that made all the wrangling with Lex to accomplish the trip completely worthwhile.

After the mini celebration which left Pete anxious to get up to the bedroom, Lana stood up and retrieved a wrapped package. She returned to her previous position on his lap and handed him the present. Pete could feel her quivering and wondered what could make her anxious so suddenly. "Come on! Open it!"

Lana bit into her lip, and Pete decided that the questions could wait. He ripped off the paper and looked down at the book in his hands. He couldn't tell if Lana was still shaking or if the motion was now coming from him. "The Big Book of Baby Names."

"Yeah. I figured we could go through it tonight."

Pete set the book on the table and cupped Lana's face in his hands. "Lana? You're...?"

She nodded with jerky motions, tears making her eyes shine in the light. "I'm pregnant, Pete." Lana gave a choked little laugh, one tear escaping to roll down her cheek. "We're having a baby."

"Oh, God..." Pete couldn't think of anything else to say -- no words could express the joy he was feeling. He kissed Lana fervently, and he definitely knew then that his hands were shaking. The words flooded back in a rush, and he pulled back. "When?"

Lana smiled, glistening all over with happiness. "September." She placed his hand on her still flat belly and held it there. "So... you think we're ready for this?"

Pete glanced from his hand back up to Lana's face. "More than ready." He kissed her softly this time, the reverence and awe he felt flowing through him. "I love you, Lana."

"I love you too, Pete. Happy anniversary."

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