"Ms. Corcoran you are a match, for your daughter. But you aren't the perfect match. If there was any other out come then I would of course use your bone marrow. But, Rachel has to have the perfect match." The doctor sighed as he finished speaking. That was the hard part. But, the hardest part was about to come.
"Okay, so either Giovanni and I are the perfect match for our daughter." Kristopher said in a calm and steady voice. "Which one is it?" He met the brown eyes of the young doctor.
"Neither." The doctor decided to drop the bomb instead of leading up too it.
Both the short Jewish, and the African American mens eyes widen in shock. Shelby's just looked resigned. The doctor looked questionable at Shelby before schooling his eyes behind the professional mask that he had been trained in medical school to adopt. "I'm sorry Mr. Berry and Mr. Berry that neither one of you are a perfect match."
"How can this be? One of us is Rachel's biological father." Giovanni said in hard voice. "One of us is the perfect match. If it's not Rachel's mother then it has to be her father."
"Neither one of your DNA matches Rachel's." The doctor dropped the second and final bomb shell.
"What!" Both men glared into the doctor's eyes – then ever slowly they turned their eyes to Shelby whom was sitting in the chair between them. "Shelby what the hell is going on?" Kristopher hissed in a low voice.
"When I went for my final check up before the artificial insemination it was discovered that your sperm would never latch onto my eggs. I knew that you two would be so heartbroken that you wouldn't be able to be fathers. I knew that it would be a long shot that the courts would allow you too adopt. So I decided to go to a sperm bank." Shelby said looking both the men in the eyes. She lowered her eyes to her lap. "It was the only way to make you two happy."
"Why didn't you tell us, Shelby." Giovanni gripped the younger woman's right hand in his own. "You should have explained to us the gift that you have freely given us. We would have torn up that damn contract."
"I never wanted to be a mother. Even as a child, I knew that I never wanted to be a mother." Shelby looked up and met Giovanni's compassionate eyes. "All I ever wanted was my name on the biggest and brightest Broadway sign." She smiled a thin line, "I was nineteen and desperate to get out of Ohio. But, I didn't have any money. Neither did my family. When I read your add – I knew it was the way out of Ohio for good. It was easy money. Plus I was going to be able to give the ultimate gift to two souls whom desperately deserved it."
Kristopher swallowed around the lump that had formed in his throat the moment that he learned that his precious little girl had cancer.
"What changed?" Giovanni gently asked. His thumb was rubbing in between Shelby's thumb and second finger.
"Rachel grew inside me. I felt every moment. Even so early on as when she was just a fetus making me sick all the time. I was trying so hard to deny that I had fallen completely, and hopelessly in love with my child. I was set on giving her up at birth. I was set to follow through with my promise to you two. But, it was killing me." Shelby didn't realize that tears had been fallen down her cheeks as she spoke.
"I knew that my craving for Broadway success still was firmly implanted in me. Even as I knew that it would kill me to hand Rachel over too you – I wanted to be a Broadway scarlet to badly to let the opportunity to pass up. I knew that if I turned my back on my dream – and stayed with Rachel – that I would end up hating Rachel for making me give up my dream." Shelby took in a shaky breath. "I never asked to hold her. Do you remember."
"Of course we remember." Kristopher finally found his voice. Shelby turned to look at him. "I will go to my grave regretting not holding my baby once in my arms." Her voice became firm.
"The moment that you followed them out of the room with Rachel – I knew it was time to leave. So I left." Shelby took swallow breathes. "It hurt like hell leaving. I knew it wasn't the wisest course of action. To leave right after giving birth. But, I knew that I had to leave. If I didn't then my dreams of Broadway would be for nothing. I knew my baby girl would come to hate me."
"Oh Shel." Giovanni groaned low in his throat.
"I lasted four years in New York. I managed to make a name for myself. But I knew I had to be close to my baby girl once more. I knew that I would be arrested if I moved to Lima. I wasn't that stupid. Although; I could have told you two the truth about the sperm donor – but I just couldn't put you through that. So I moved to Columbus." Shelby sighed. "It took two years before I landed the teaching job at Carmal." She let out a broken cry. "I hired a private Investigator to keep tabs on Rachel. I hired him after I left the hospital. I just couldn't tear Rachel out of my life completely. I just had to make sure that she was loved and okay. Without me."
Giovanni pulled Shelby into his chest, and held the broken woman tightly against him. Shelby finally let it go. She clung to Giovanni like a dying woman would a life line. "Oh God, I may lose my baby girl for good."
Kristopher got up, and wrapped his arms around his husband's back allowing his chest to firmly lay against Shelby's back. He laid his head against Shelby's quivering right shoulder, "You aren't going to lose Rachel, Shelby. Rachel is strong and a fighter."
The doctor looked on as the grief stricken parents finally broke under the stress of their extremely ill child. He swore to himself yet again to do everything in his power to save Rachel Berry. No parent should have to go through this pain. When the three managed to pull away from one another and look back at him, he spoke. "I had all ready called the World wide bond marrow source, and told them of the situation. Rachel is now in the top ten of the list for bone barrow transfer. They are even now sending out a world wide search for Rachel's biological father."
"What are the chances that they will find a match?" Kristopher asked.
"They are doing everything they can." The doctor began. "I'm sorry but it doesn't look good. Rachel's biological father could be dead for all we know." The three faces facing him paled even more. "I'm sorry. But, know that we are doing everything we can."
"Thank you doctor." Shelby bowed her head and quietly broke down once more. She felt arms wrap tightly around her, and knew she wasn't alone in this pain. She prayed to God Almighty to save her daughter.
It was the only thing she could do. Rachel's life was out of her hands. She had to trust the God Almighty to do his will with Rachel.
END OF PRELUDE