• Furious footsteps splashed through puddles of mud lying in the damp forest. The runner hoped for her life that the muddy forest floor would not cause her to slip, because then she would be caught and killed instantly. And she needed to get to the town on the other side of the large forest, for there lay her safety.
    She caught the sun setting out of the corner of her eye and felt her suppressed panic rise up again. If she didn't make it through this forest before the sun was fully set, she was a dead woman. She glanced behind her and did not see anyone chasing her, but she knew to keep running because her pursuer knew more than she'd thought he knew, and he knew how not to be seen.
    She turned her head back and looked to where she was running. The sunset reflected on the lake, and normally she would spend a half an hour watching the sun set over the lake but now was not the time for that. The mud splashed the bottoms of her jeans and she cursed the fact that once she was safe she'd have to spend hours getting the mud stains off the bottoms of her favorite pair of jeans.
    The wind blew harder in the forest, making the sound of leaves ruffling louder. But to Roxane, that only meant danger lurking on her shadows.
    In a rural country cottage-type home, the elated and relaxed new parents cuddled and bundled their new baby, Justin. He had just been born three days ago, and the hospital had finally released the mother and the baby to go home. For the husband and father, it had been a very lonely three days; but for the mother, it had been the most exciting three days she'd had since her wedding day.
    At first, when she had just discovered that she was pregnant, she knew it posed a problem because her past was not a good one. But she got used to it and then she got excited. But now she couldn't help thinking that her new family was in trouble. But she would do anything for her baby, including dying. She would not let her family die because of a pesky, stubborn, dangerous ex-fiancee.
    The baby suddenly started crying. The mother knew he was just hungry and revealed her breast to the baby so she could breastfeed him. He sucked joyfully and she watched him. He had her eyes, but her husband's spirit. He didn't have much any hair yet, but from what she could see he had her hair color. She was overjoyed with her new baby. The start of something entirely new, she thought. A wild new adventure in raising their first child. She watched the three-day-old breastfeed, seeing her tattoo-located above her left breast-out of the corner of her eye , which read 'Roxane' with deep red roses surrounding it.

    "I will always protect you, Justin..."