Summary: I have always thought that Carolyn and Jim made wonderful friends. This story is an ode to friendship, and the ties of love that run deep... Originally posted to SentinelAngst.
Disclaimer: Canon characters do not belong to me. They are the property of Pet Fly and Paramount. I don't make any money etc., etc.
Notes: Thanks as usual to my wonderful beta, Becky :)
Jim fumbled for the ringing phone, his mind jolted from a deep sleep. Clearing his throat, Jim tucked the receiver against his ear, trying to clear the last residue of sleep-coated cobwebs from his head.
"Ellison," Jim rasped, trying to sound at least half-awake. A familiar voice filtered over the phone lines, immediately snapping his mind into awareness. "Carolyn? What happened? What's going on?" Jim waited for the reply, unconsciously holding his breath as he waited for her to answer.
"It's okay Jim. Nothing's wrong. I just... I just needed to hear your voice."
Jim snapped on the bedside lamp, his body resting on his left elbow. A quick glance at his clock, and Jim's brow furrowed in confusion. "It's three o'clock in the morning, Carolyn. You needed to hear my voice at three am? Where's Jack? Are you sure nothing's wrong?"
"Jack's out of town at some convention. I tried calling the hotel, but he hasn't come back yet."
Jim could detect a slight tremor in his ex-wife's voice, making the hair on the back of his neck stand on end. "Carolyn, you need to tell me what's going on."
"Nothing's going on, Jim. I'm sorry. I shouldn't have called. Go back to sleep."
"No. Wait!" Jim pushed himself to a seating position, hoping to convey with his voice the same urgency that his heart was feeling. "Don't go," Jim whispered, his soft tone filled with concern. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have cut you off like that. What is it you needed to ask me?"
A long pause filled the airwaves. The only indication that Carolyn was still there was the slight hitch in her normally steady breathing.
"Carolyn? Carolyn? Carolyn, answer me."
"I'm here, Jim. This is was a bad idea. I'm so sorry."
It didn't take Sentinel hearing to pick up on the restrained shudder in Carolyn's speech as she tried not to cry. Jim tried to think of a way to keep Carolyn on the phone, without further upsetting her. "Hey, don't worry about it. How many times did I wake you up at three am? You owe me at least a hundred more calls."
"I think this one is worth at least twenty."
Chuckling lightly, Jim stood up, grabbing his robe from the foot of the bed and putting it on. "I'll be the judge of that. Now what is it that you needed to talk to me about?" Jim bit his lip as he tied the robe and moved quietly towards the darkened stairway.
"This is crazy, Jim. What I needed to know. I mean. Oh, this is ridiculous."
Jim smiled into the phone as he softly padded down the stairs towards the living room. "I live with Blair Sandburg, remember? Insanity is my life. Come on, tell me."
"Okay… Jim, do you think I would have made a good mother?"
Jim took a moment to reply, relaxing slightly at Carolyn's words. "A good mother? Where's this coming from?
"Please Jim, just answer the question."
Lowering his voice, Jim entered the kitchen, being as quiet as possible. Without turning on a light, Jim opened the cupboards retrieving two mugs and some of Blair's herbal tea. "You'd have made a great mother," Jim offered, grabbing the kettle and crossing over to the sink to fill it with water. "The best."
"You're just saying that so you can go back to sleep," the teasing voice at the other end of the line replied.
Placing the kettle on the stove, Jim shook his head into the phone. "No, I'm not just saying that. It's the truth, Carolyn. I'm just sorry I never got to find out."
"That's the sweetest thing you've ever said to me, James Ellison. You're getting soft in your old age."
"Just don't make it public knowledge, okay? I wouldn't want anyone else to get wind of it. I'd hate to ruin my reputation for being a jerk." Jim's hearing picked up the change in Blair's breathing as the younger man shifted restlessly in his sleep. "So tell me, why did you ask me that in the first place?"
"Because… Because I'm pregnant."
Leaning against the counter, it was Jim's turn to remain silent. The urgent sound of Carolyn's voice pushed its way into his thoughts.
"Jim, are you there?"
"That's wonderful news, Carolyn. You and Jack must be thrilled." Jim tried to keep his voice light, not wanting her to detect any of the mixed feelings that were making his stomach churn. "How far along are you?"
"I just found out today. Jack doesn't even know yet. I'm going to surprise him when he gets home on the weekend."
"That's great. I'm glad you told me, Carolyn." Jim couldn't help but feel a rush of emotion as he thought of how special it was for Carolyn to have told him about the pregnancy before Jack. Jim looked towards Blair's bedroom as the sound of a light being turned on and the sleep-heavy footsteps of his best friend echoed in the loft.
"Well, I should probably go. I'm sure Simon will have you up in a few hours. Good night, Jim, and thanks."
"Anytime," Jim whispered, watching as Blair moved out of his bedroom still rubbing the sleep from his eyes. "Good night." He turned off the phone, smiling at the disheveled appearance of his friend.
"Who was that? Everything okay, Jim?" Blair rasped, his voice rough with sleep.
Grabbing the hot kettle off of the stove, Jim began pouring the steaming liquid into the mugs. "Fine. Everything's fine."
Blair watched Jim as he filled the mugs with the hot brew, surprised to see Jim so alert and smiling at this time of night. "You feeling okay? Your senses aren't acting up or anything are they? I told you not to eat that chili. Lord knows what Joel put in that thing. What are you smiling about?"
Carrying the two mugs, Jim crossed the space between himself and Blair holding out one of the mugs to his partner. "You're gonna make a great dad someday, you know that?"
Blair took the offered mug, barely able to make out the serious expression on Jim's face in the shadowed room. "Where did that come from?"
"I don't know. Maybe it's just because you care so much, about me, about everything." Jim patted Blair's shoulder, moving past him towards the couch.
"That's one of the nicest things you've ever said to me, Jim. Thank you."
Shrugging his shoulders, Jim positioned himself on the couch. "Yeah well, don't get used to it. It's probably just the chili talking."
Blair grinned at his friend, taking his mug and sitting beside Jim on the couch. "Then I better get the recipe from Joel. You know something, Jim?"
"What?" Jim asked, taking a long sip of his tea.
"You'd make a pretty awesome dad too."