I just stare at her. "It can't be. It's too early..."
She shakes her head, face screwed up against the pain. I'm standing there, a hundred thoughts whirling through my head, every possible reason for why this cannot be happening cancelling itself out in a moment that stretches out further than I would have thought possible.
It's too early. It's not.
We're not ready. It doesn't matter if you're ready or not.
I don't know what to do. Do something...
And I'm just standing there as Lisa's legs buckle and she falls to her knees, clutching her stomach. I'd been so certain of us reaching Holme before the baby came that I'd not even considered what I might do if it arrived early. And now my body is paralysed, feet rooted to the spot, mind spinning.
"David..." groans Lisa.
And suddenly I'm back there. Back THERE. The place I thought even my dreams had finally left behind. I'm crouching in the wreckage of a newly burned city watching Sharon, my Sharon, the woman I love, watching as she dangles from the claw of a blood-smeared alien, dangles over the gaping pit-mouth of a monster...
Crying out my name. Needing me to rescue her.
And all I do is watch. I can't move. I'm so scared. Terror, bright and electric, jacked into every nerve of my body.
And Sharon falls. And Lisa doubles over in pain.
If I was any kind of hero...
And then I'm moving.
I jump up out of the boat and kneel down by Lisa, find her hands, pull her into a half crouch. "Come on," I hear myself say. "This way. Get in here, quick."
Step by agonising step I help her down into the boat and into the tiny cabin. She sits against the wall, turning this way and that, arching her back as she tries to find a comfortable position. The cabin is pretty bare, wood-floored and with rusting metal walls. Not the ideal place, but we have to make do with what we have.
"Listen," I say. Lisa's eyes are still squeezed shut, her teeth gritted, but she nods. "I'm going to go and find some things," I say. "Water, blankets. I won't be long." She nods again, but as I rise she grabs my arm.
"You will come back, won't you?" she says, her voice tight and urgent.
"Promise. Promise you'll come back to me."
"I promise," I say. And more than ever before, I mean it.