The doctor’s expression softened. “I found no evidence that she had been mistreated in any way. Physically. There is no way to find out all she has endured until she is able to tell us. And we must be patient and not press her before she is ready. As I said, she is extremely fragile, and if pressed too hard, too fast, the results could be devastating.”
Chrysander cursed softly. “I understand. I will see to it that she has the best possible care. Now can I see her?”
The doctor hesitated. “You can see her. However, I would caution you not to be too forthcoming with the details of her abduction.”
A frown creased Chrysander’s brow as he stared darkly at the physician. “You want me to lie to her?”
“I merely don’t want you to upset her. You can give her details of her life. Her day-to-day activities. How you met. The mundane things. It is my suggestion, however, and I’ve conferred with the hospital psychiatrist on this matter, that you not rush to give her the details of her captivity and how she came to lose her memory. In fact, we know very little, so it would be unwise to speculate or offer her information that could be untrue. She must be kept calm. I don’t like to think of what another upset could cause her in her current state.”
Chrysander nodded reluctantly. What the doctor said made sense, but his own need to know what had happened to Marley was pressing. But he wouldn’t push her if it would cause her or the baby any harm. He checked his watch. He still had to meet with the authorities, but first he wanted to see Marley and said as much to the doctor.
The physician nodded. “I’ll have the nurse take you up now.”
Marley struggled underneath the layers of fog surrounding her head. She murmured a low protest when she opened her eyes. Awareness was not what she sought. The blanket of dark, of oblivion, was what she wanted.There was nothing for her in wakefulness. Her life was one black hole of nothingness. Her name was all that lingered in the confusing layers of her mind. Marley.
She searched for more. Answers she needed to questions that swarmed her every time she wakened. Her past lay like a great barren landscape before her. The answers dangled beyond her, taunting her and escaping before she could reach out and take hold.
She turned her head on the thin pillow, fully intending to slip back into the void of sleep when a firm hand grasped hers. Fear scurried up her spine until she remembered that she was safe and in a hospital. Still, she yanked her hand away as her chest rose and fell with her quick breaths.
“You must not go back to sleep, pedhaki mou. Not yet.”
The man’s voice slid across her skin, leaving warmth in its wake. Carefully, she turned to face this stranger—or was he? Was he someone she knew? Who knew her? Could he be the father of the child nestled below her heart?
Her hand automatically felt for her rounded belly as her gaze lighted on the man who’d spoken to her.
He was a dominating presence. Tall, lithe, dangerously intent as his amber eyes stared back at her. He wasn’t American. She nearly laughed at the absurdity of her thoughts. She should be demanding to know who he was and why he was here, and yet all she could muster was the knowledge that he wasn’t American?
“Our baby is fine,” he said as his gaze dropped to the hand she had cupped protectively over her abdomen.
She tensed as she realized that he was indeed staking a claim. Shouldn’t she know him? She reached for something, some semblance of recognition, but unease and fear were all she found.
“Who are you?” she finally managed to whisper.
Something flickered in those golden eyes, but he kept his expression neutral. Had she hurt him with the knowledge she didn’t know him? She tried to put herself in his position. Tried to imagine how she’d feel if the father of her baby suddenly couldn’t remember her.