Chapter Seven

Lindsey and the twins are put to bed and Rose lays awake cuddled close to her sleeping husband. Lying there she examines his face and thanks god that she hadn't lost him after all she's put him through. She didn't know what she'd do if she had to go through this custody battle alone.
"Rose?" Jack stirs in his sleep and slowly opens his eyes. He must have felt her watching him.
"I'm sorry Jack. I couldn't sleep," Rose strokes his cheek. I was just thinking about Lindsey and you. I don't know what I'd do if you weren't here to get me through this."
"I'll always be here for ya Rose. Don't you know that by now?"
"I should, but I'm always surprised. Someday Jack, you will get tired of being my rock. I know you will," Rose sighed sadly.
"I'll never get tired of being your rock Rose. I'm your husband and that's what I'm here for. Besides, I love you and enjoy being your rock," Jack smiled. "Now go to sleep. We have to meet with our layer so he can give us a better idea of what our chances are," Jack kissed her forehead.
"Yes Jack," Rose sighed.
Jack remained awake until Rose drifted off to sleep. Stroking her hair gently he wished with all his might that it was within his power to keep Lindsey with them. Rose loved the little girl so much and do did he. She was a part of them now...and the twins would be heartbroken if they lost their big sister. Sighing deeply, Jack drifted off to sleep.

The Dawson family lawyer sat behind his desk, his brow wrinkled in a frown as the young couple sat before him with pleading eyes.
"Please Mr. Emery. Tell us there's a chance we can keep Lindsey, even if it's next to nothing," Rose sniffed back her tears at the thought of losing the little girl.
"Jack...Rose...what can I say. In these cases, the foster parents never have any rights. All the rights belong to the biological family. Mr. Linningston can take this child away from you and there's nothing either of us can do," The lawyer sighed. "All I can tell you do do right now is to say your goodbyes now and turn her over to her grandfather. It'll save you a whole lot of heartbreak."
Jack lowers his gaze to the floor. Not sure of what to do. He couldn't let Rose down, that's for sure. He had to at least try to keep Lindsey. "Mr. Emery, what would you say if I told you we don't attend to give up on lindsey? If we planned to fight this?"
"That you were crazy and foolish to think you could defeat a powerful man like Albert Linningston. The man is very powerful Jack. He can wipe out an entire company like the White Star Line if he so chose. For your wife's sake and the sake of your own children...give it up. Let the girl go with her grandfather. You two are young. It's not like you can't have children of your own."
"But we want Lindsey!" Rose cried. "She's our little girl...we were there for her through everything. When she lost her mother I was there to comfort her! When she had fallen off a swing, I was there to patch it up! When she needed a hug, a kiss, someone to talk to I was there! When she was scared of monsters being under her bed it was Jack who comforted her and gave her the sense of security! Where was Mr. Linningston then huh? Where was he when that car hit his daughter! Where was he when Stacey's husband died and she was forced to raise her daughter by herself? Where was he?" Tears stream down from Rose's eyes, her body shakes with each sob. Jack can do nothing but hold her in his arms and try to comfort her with gentle words and kisses.
"Mrs. Dawson, I understand where you're coming from. I really do," Mr. Emery sighed, handing the sobbing woman an handkerchief. "I too adopted a little boy and I love him like he was my own. In fact, I all but forget that he was adopted. But you have to think what's right for Lindsey..."
"We're right for Lindsey. Mr. Emery, I grew up in a house just like the Linningston mansion. It was a cold and unfeeling place and I was scared to death to even breath. I was so afraid that I'd do something wrong and my mother would punish me severely. It was a horrible childhood and I'll be damned if I let that old man take Lindsey and traumatize her the way my mother traumatized me," Rose sniffed. "Even if I have to take her and disappear!"
"Rose..." Jack warned.
"Listen. This decision is yours. I'm just saying that it'll be better to just give in. But if you want to fight this...I'll stand behind you and do my best to make sure that Lindsey stays with you," Mr. Emery sighed. "Just be prepared for a long and nasty battle."
"What's the first step Mr. Emery?" Jack asked.
"I'll call the judge and halt that custody thing linningston has going. That'll buy us some time. Then I'll get a court date set up as soon as possible. In the meantime, you two make sure that Lindsey is living in a comfortable and stable home. Which shouldn't be too hard with all your grandfather had left you," The lawyer sighed. "Make sure she's completely safe and secure. The judge will look for that. Make sure that all three of the children get along."
"Is that all?" Rose asked.
"Afraid so Mrs. Dawson," The lawyer simply nods. "But don't worry. I'm totally in your corner and I'll get a couple of New York lawyer friends to work w ith me on this case. So that'll give you a lot of gunpower. But let me warn you that this is bound to get dirty. I've heard of Mr. Linningston and he pulls o ut all the stops to get what he matter who it may hurt. Do you understand?"
Rose solemnly nods. "Thank-you Mr. Emery. This means a lot to us and lindsey."
The lawyeer just smiles and nods. "Well I have to cut this meeting short. I have a lunch date with one of those lawyer friends of mine and if I want his help I can't be late."
"We understand," Jack stands, helping Rose to her feet. "Will you keep in touch?"
"Of course. I'll talk to you tonight and let you know if there's another lawyer on your team. Good day Jack and Rose."
As they leave the office, a gray cloud settles over their mood. The future was so uncertain. All they can do was stick close to each other and head for home where their children awaited them.