So, here it is. My David Story.

A little background...

I participated in an interactive fan fiction on a friend's site, and my character ended up with David. I spent so much time immersing myself in his music and stories about him (which are hard to find, by the way) that he took over my thoughts for quite some time. I couldn't get him out of my head. He's still in there, rattling doors and opening drawers and such, but he's behaving himself. Mostly.

This story came out as an outlet for me to try to get through my little obsession. I told some of the girls from the other fan fic exercise, and they thought it was hysterical that I got so wrapped up, that I couldn't think of anything but him.

They convinced me to "go public" with the story, so here it is.

I hope you enjoy it. It starts here.

~ Hath


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The first few days after the LJs were born went by in a flurry of visitors, baby gifts, phone calls, and telegrams. By that weekend, however, it was down to just the four of them. They worked out a routine for feeding, and Hath’s earlier fear that she’d never be able to breast-feed twins was put to rest. David took great pleasure in watching the intimate bond between his wife and his children, and took several tasteful pictures of the beautiful sight.

When the babies were six weeks old, and Hath had been “cleared for relations”, as Darcy put it, David gently took Hath into his arms and made love to her. Their climax was immediately followed by the squall of hungry children. Hath laughed. “At least we got the chance to finish,” she said, as they got out of bed to take care of the babies.

At Halloween, David and Hath dressed their children up as tiny pumpkins, and took them to Jon and Sam’s for a small family gathering. David’s other kids were there, as were Jon’s, though both exes elected to stay behind. Richie and Lucia were on another trip together, this time to Turks & Caicos, putting in “lots of practice in the baby-making department,” as Richie told them.

The Rashbaums spent lots of time in the fall traveling back and forth to the city so David could work on his musical. Hath spent hours walking the twins on the streets of NYC, which was not an easy task in a double-stroller. She fell in love with the city, and talked David into taking an apartment in Manhattan so they didn’t have to stay in hotels when they came out.

When Toxic Avenger opened the following March, Hath was there in the front row, beaming proudly at her husband, dressed in a Toxie T-shirt, laughing her ass off. Mama G came up to take care of “her babies” as she called LJ.

The holidays were a grand time, with both families descending on the Rashbaum’s house for both Hanukkah and Christmas. The house was alive with the sounds of laughing and cooing babies, laughing and cooing grandparents, and the steady click-click-click of the camera.

Laura did everything first. Just before she and her brother turned a year old, she started walking. John copied his “big sister” and soon the two were toddling all over the house. A week later, Laura pushed John down when he wouldn’t get out of her way. He pushed back, and they had their first real fight.

They started speaking at around eighteen months old. Their first word, other than Mama and Dada was piano.

The twins loved all of Daddy’s “brothers”. Laura was still enthralled by Richie’s voice, and would turn to him whenever she heard it. She fell in love with Jon’s eyes and would reach for them when she saw him. John favored Tico, and would follow the drummer around, chattering and slapping his palms on every flat surface he encountered.

The children were nearly inseparable. Where one would go, the other would never be more than a few steps behind. The few times that Jon would take Lyndsay and Laura for walks together talking to them about the trees, or the flowers around them, or anything that caught their fancy, John would miss his sister and sulk until she came back. If Teek took John off on a “Grand Man Adventure”, Laura would look for him, calling, “Jaw, Jaw, Jaw” as she walked around the house.

The July Lyndsay turned two, the Harem was gathered at Jon and Sam’s to celebrate. The women were sitting together under a huge tent Jon had rented for the occasion, and the men, Jon, Rich, and Dave were watching the little ones as they splashed and played in a kiddie pool. The older ones, Ava and Michael, were in the big pool, being watched over by Matt.

“I can’t believe all our wives are pregnant,” Richie commented.

“I can’t believe we’re all due around Thanksgiving!” David added. “I guess I know how all you losers spent your Valentine’s Day.”

The men had a good laugh and smiled down on the children splashing in the water. Laura beamed at her father, then shoved her brother over, making him cry. “Laura, no!” David said sternly, making her cry, too. He sighed and scooped up his kids, bringing them to his wife.

“Don’t look now,” Sam said to Hath, “but here comes your lovely husband. Looks like the twins are at it again.”

Hath scratched her belly, significantly smaller than the last time she was 5 months’ pregnant, and stood. “I swear, they do it on purpose. They know I’m relaxing, and they get pissed.” She smiled. “I hope Patty doesn’t act like that when she comes.”

“Patty?” David said, coming up behind his wife and kissing her neck. “I didn’t know that was on the table. I thought we were still on Noel.”

Hath and the girls laughed, recalling David’s handle on the Football Forum when he was trying to be a smart ass and get under Jon’s skin. The guys meandered over to sit with their women, tired of being away from them, and wanting to know what was so damned funny. Ava and Michael were wrapped in towels, and sat apart from the adults, chatting softly.

The Football Forum.

How much things had changed since they were on the forum. It’s been almost a full year now. Hath still found it hard to believe that thanks to a small online forum, and a stupid little bet, she met and married the most wonderful man, and had two beautiful children and a third on the way. She checked in on the forum every now and again, but there wasn’t much action. Most of the players had moved on to bigger and better things.

Much like her extended family.

Sam had her life full with Jon and Lyndsay, and the little boy that was growing in her womb. They weren’t sharing names yet, but had been emphatic that they would NOT call their son ‘Robin’. Sam was consulting with the local DA’s office, and once her son is born, has a job waiting for her if she wants it.

Stephanie and Matt were expecting their first child together, and Michael couldn’t wait to be a big brother. They wanted to be surprised as to the gender of their baby, but also swore that even if it were a girl, ‘Robin’ was off the table.

Richie was so attentive to Lucia that she thought she’d have to kill him. After two miscarriages, Richie was taking no chances with his lovely wife. He would let her do very little for herself.

The guys had been in the studio for months, laying down a record that would be out in the fall. After that, there’d be a tour, though this time Jon swore that he wouldn’t do anything until after their son was born. Sam didn’t believe him for a second. Not after what happened with Lyndsay.

As Hath took her daughter from her husband, she looked around at her friends, her family, and smiled. “Have I told you yet today that I love you, Joker?” she asked him.

“Yes, but I never get tired of hearing it,” he answered. “I love you too, Hath,” he said, kissing her gently. “Forever.”

~*~ THE END ~*~

Chapter 123: Hello LJ

Friday, July 31, 2009

Hath groaned. “I don’t know if I can wait a few more minutes. I’m so uncomfortable.”

Dr. Donovan looked at her, frowning. “Uncomfortable how?”

“God, they feel like they want to just burst out like on Alien,” she chuckled. “That would make even more of a mess, right David?”

“You mean it’s forward pressure?” Darcy asked. She put her hands on Hath’s abdomen and pressed. She studied the readouts on the fetal monitors for long minutes. “Hath, I won’t lie to you, I’m worried.”

“Worried?” David echoed, his face going white.

“Yes, that’s the wrong kind of pressure,” she said to him, before turning to Hath. “Everything’s progressing, but I want you to be prepared. If something starts to go wrong, I won’t hesitate to take you into surgery.”

“Anything to save my family,” David said, his hand crushed by Hath’s.

“What kind of wrong?” Hath asked, terrified now.

Darcy just shook her head. “Nothing we can’t handle,” she said. “Let’s check you again.” She smiled. “Someone’s crowning! It’s baby birthing time! Do you want the mirror?”

There was a mirror mounted to the ceiling, opposite the bed. It was on a swivel and currently turned so it would face the wall. But if they wanted, the nurse would turn it so David and Hath could watch their children being born.

“David, it’s up to you,” Hath said. “I’m not going to be watching anything but the inside of my eyelids.”

He shook his head at her. “No, I’ll be too distracted.” He looked down at the foot of the bed. “I want to focus on Hath, doc, you focus on our babies.”

The end of the bed came away, and Darcy positioned her stool at the foot. Janelle stood on one side, David on the other, bracing her feet with their hands. Hath’s knees were bent up close to her shoulders, and she grabbed on to her shins with all her strength.

“I love you,” David said. “No matter what vile names you call me, I still love you.”

“I love you tooooooooo,” Hath said, ending on a moan.

“Okay, Hath,” Darcy said. “With the next contraction, I want to you to push. Nice and easy, but hard, can you do that?”

“A little late to be asking me that, isn’t it?” she snapped. “Yeah, I can do it.”

David saw the contraction coming on the monitors a split second before Hath’s chin buried into her chest. She blew out through pursed lips, moaning with the strain of the push.

“Good!” Darcy said. “Very good. Now relax,” she added, when the contraction passed. “There’s quite a bit of hair here, this little one is definitely not bald.”

David peeked around Hath’s leg to see for himself. “Oh Hath, she’s got your hair.”

She breathed heavily. “How do you know that it’s Laura?”

“Because if she’s anything like her mother, she doesn’t want to miss a second, and wants to be first.”

“Ok, Hath,” Darcy said. “Next contraction big push. Hold it as long as you can, okay?”

Hath nodded. She panted and took a deep breath when her abdomen rippled, and pushed for all she was worth. She squeaked a moan through pursed lips.

“Hath, we’ve got the head honey, but stop pushing,” Darcy said. “Now.”

Hath immediately backed off. Something in Darcy’s tone made her scared. “What’s wrong?” Darcy didn’t answer for a minute, she was busy doing something that Hath couldn’t see. “David,” she said, “please, tell me what she’s doing.”

Darcy gave David a look that said, “Don’t you dare tell her anything” when he peered down to see what was going on. Darcy had her pinky finger between the umbilical cord and the baby’s neck. He paled and swallowed hard. As he watched, she expertly and swiftly maneuvered the cord up and over the baby’s head and exhaled sharply.

“D?” Hath’s voice was shaking with terror. “What’s wrong?”

David kissed her cheek. “Not a damned thing,” he answered. “Everything’s fine.”

“He’s right,” Darcy agreed. “Now we work on the shoulders. Next contraction, give me a big push.”

Twenty minutes later, at 11:17, they were rewarded with an indignant scream as Laura Jean slid into the world. “Laura has made her appearance,” Darcy said, holding up the squirming, red wrinkly bundle.

“She looks just like you, David,” Hath said, reaching for her daughter. “Except for my hair.”

Darcy rested the baby on Hath’s abdomen while she cleaned up and waited for the cord to stop pulsing. When it did, she placed clamps about a quarter inch apart on the cord, and handed David a pair of scissors. With tears in his eyes, he cut the cord, cupping his daughter’s head with his big hand. He looked at his wife. “I love you so much,” he said, his voice cracking.

“I love you too,” Hath answered, and turned her face up for a kiss. They gazed down on their daughter until the nurse came to take her for her APGAR and to weigh and wrap her. Neither of her parents could keep their eyes off their baby girl.

Only when Laura was safely in her bassinet by the bed did they turn their attention back to Darcy, who had a big grin on her face. “One down, one to go.” She consulted the monitors, and noted that everything looked good.

“Why don’t I feel like I’m still in labor?” Hath asked. “Nothing hurts anymore.”

“It could be euphoria or it could be that John doesn’t want to arrive on your schedule,” the doctor answered.

David laughed, looking at Hath. Though their son wasn’t named for his friend, the child already seemed to have his temperament. “Why does that not surprise me,” he said.

“I’d take the time to relax; get to know your daughter,” Darcy said. “You’ll know when John is ready to make his arrival.”

David gently lifted the warm little bundle out of the bassinet and handed their daughter to Hath. “Here you go, Mom,” he said, smiling.

Hath took the baby, settling her in the crook of her arm so David could see her face. He traced the baby’s forehead with a gentle fingertip. “Happy birthday, Laura,” he said softly.

Laura’s deep navy eyes blinked at the lights in the room. Hath pressed her face in close to her daughter’s. “Hi, Laura,” she said. “I’m your mama and I love you very much.” She kissed a tiny cheek and was rewarded with a big, gaping yawn.

“Guess she’s not as enthralled with you as you are with her,” David joked. He leaned in close too, pressing his cheek against his wife’s. “Hey baby girl,” he said softly. “I’m your daddy and am going to spoil you rotten.” Hath chuckled at that. Laura’s eyes blinked slowly, and drifted closed, her teeny little eyelashes resting on her cheeks.

David retrieved their camera from Hath’s bag, and framed his girls in the lens. He snapped off a couple of pictures before handing the camera to Janelle. “Would you mind?” he asked before returning to his wife’s bedside.

“Oh, D, she’s perfect,” Hath said sleepily. “Absolutely perfect.”

David looked at Hath. Exhausted from giving birth, her eyes were drifting closed. David whispered, “let me take her, you rest.”

He scooped the little girl from her mother’s embrace. The jostling woke Laura, and she let out a little squeak of protest. David settled into the rocking chair in the corner of the room and rocked his daughter, singing to her softly.

You're the end of the rainbow, my pot of gold,
You're daddy's little girl to have and hold.
A precious gem is what you are,
You're mommy's bright and shining star.

Janelle took several photos of David with Laura, and returned the camera to the bag. Darcy came over to stand by his shoulder. “How’s our baby doing?” she asked.

“She’s just perfect. Thank you,” he said, his eyes telling her exactly what he meant. “You saved her,” he whispered, tears springing to his eyes.

Darcy smiled and patted his shoulder. “All in a day’s work,” she quipped. “If she was in real danger, I would have taken Hath to the O.R.”

David covered Darcy’s hand with his. “Thank you,” he said again, and this time Darcy simply nodded. “How long do we let her rest?” David asked, nodding at Hath.

Darcy chuckled. “Believe me; she will not sleep through labor. When your son is ready to make his appearance he will wake her up. I’ve got another patient to check on; I’ll be back soon.”

After the doctor left, David sat and rocked a while longer; content to just hold his daughter. Soon after, Hath started to stir.

“David?” she said, her eyes not quite open.

“Over here, my love.”

Hath turned her head, and the sight of David rocking their daughter brought tears to her eyes. “What a beautiful picture you make. Oh! Picture! The camera…”

“Already taken care of,” Janelle said. “How are you doing?”

“Fine,” Hath answered. “Just sleepy and sore.” She rubbed her abdomen and chuckled. “Now that John has the place all to himself, he won’t be in such a hurry to come out.”

Janelle laughed. “That may be true, but he doesn’t have much choice in the matter.”

David came to join Hath on the bed, sitting on the edge. He handed their daughter to his wife, and kissed them both. “Do you want me to call our moms? Let them know Laura has arrived? Or just wait until John arrives?”

“You can call, I’m sure they’re dying for news.”

That was the understatement of the day. Both his mother and his mother-in-law picked up halfway through the first ring and both were overjoyed to hear that Laura arrived safely. David promised to call back when John arrived, and his moms promised to take care of calling everyone else.

About an hour later, Hath felt a searing cramp low in her abdomen. She let out a loud moan, and the monitor showed a big contraction. “God, here we go again,” she said.

“You’re doing so great,” David said, putting Laura back into her bassinette. He stood by his wife’s side, and smoothed her hair back. “I’m so proud of you,” he murmured against her forehead.

Darcy came bustling into the room and went to the sink to wash her hands. “Ready for round two?”

“As ready as I can be,” Hath answered.

“He’s crowning already,” Darcy said, “and he’s bald as a cue-ball.” She chuckled. “It looks like he’s anxious to come out so Laura doesn’t get all the attention. Give us a big push!’

John Edward Rashbaum slid into the world without any fuss. David commented that this would probably be the last time their son didn’t give them any trouble. After getting cleaned and weighed, John was handed gently to his mother. “David, he looks just like me,” she said. “Except for the no hair thing.”

David came over to look. “He is gorgeous,” he answered. “Hey there, little man.” David straightened and started to laugh softly.

“What’s so funny?” Hath asked, looking at her husband like he had lost his mind.

“He’s an LJ too,” David said. “’Little John’. God, that’s priceless.”

“Oh no,” Hath said, smiling. “No way are you calling him Little John. That’s almost as bad as ‘John Boy’. Uh-uh. I love you, and would never hurt you, but if you call our son that, I will have to kill you.”

“Oh, you’re no fun. We could get him a staff and teach him to parry…”

“Tell you what,” Hath said. “If you can get Richie or Jon to name their next child ‘Robin’, you can call him ‘Little John’. Sound like a deal?”

David laughed. “I can live with that.” He kissed his son’s forehead like he did his daughter’s, then placed a longer kiss on his wife’s lips. “I love you, Hath,” he said, punctuating each word with kisses.

“I love you too,” Hath answered. David picked up his daughter and put her in Hath’s other arm. They sat there together while Janelle took pictures, and couldn’t get enough of their little faces.

A short while later, when Janelle led Hath into the shower to get cleaned up, an orderly came to change the bed. David sat in the rocking chair, holding his son, and made another round of phone calls. Laura lay sleeping in the bassinet next to his chair. He smiled down on the newest member of his family, and started to sing for him.

From the first time the doctor placed you in my arms
I knew I'd meet death before I'd let you meet harm
Although questions arose in my mind, would I be man enough
Against wrong, choose right and be standing up

Touched your head gently, felt my heart melt
Cause I knew I loved you more than life itself
Then to my knees, and I begged the Lord please
Let me be a good daddy, all he needs

Love, knowledge, discipline too
I pledge my life to you

Hath had tears in her eyes as she heard his words. “You know, you do not have a voice for rap,” she said. “Will Smith you are not.”

David chuckled. “It’s the thought that counts. I’ll write something for them later; I couldn’t do it until I met them. Now, the music is swirling through my head.”

“Did you call the moms again?”

David nodded. “Yep, and the guys too. I told Jon his namesake was bald.” He laughed.

“When are they descending?”

“Sam and Lucia are coming today, the moms and Stephanie will come tomorrow. The others will wait until we’re home.”

Hath nodded. Now that the equipment and all the people were gone, and it was just the four of them, Hath was nervous. “What do we do now?” The babies were asleep in the same bassinette next to the bed.

“We watch our children sleep, and maybe get a little rest ourselves. They won’t always be this quiet you know,” David answered.

Hath scooted over on the bed a little, to make room. “Come lay with me,” she said.

And he did.

When the nurses came in to check on them, they smiled at David laying behind Hath, one arm wrapped around her waist. Hath’s hand was in the crib, splayed across her children’s legs. All four Rashbaums were asleep. Janelle quietly took Hath’s blood pressure, and ushered the other nurses out, shutting the door behind her.

Chapter 122: Not Yet!

Friday, July 17, 2009

“Christ, Hath!” David yelled, swerving the car. “Hold on! Don’t have the babies in the car! We’ll be there in fifteen minutes.”

David sped up a little, splitting his attention between the road, which was blessedly empty, and the passenger seat that was anything but.

“What the fuck choice do I have BUT to hold on?” she shouted. “You’re driving like a damned old woman! Put some oomph into it, man. Like you mean it!” She cried out as another contraction wracked her body.

“Shit,” David said, and pressed harder on the accelerator.

He was doing eighty as he approached the hospital. He tore into the parking lot and screeched to a halt in front of the Emergency Room, blocking an ambulance. An EMT was coming out of the hospital, and frowned at him.

“You can’t park there, man,” he said.

“Yes, I can,” David said. “If this isn’t an emergency, I don’t know what is!” He indicated the passenger seat where the EMT saw a very pregnant woman panting and muttering to herself. The EMT ran back into the hospital and got a nurse, an orderly, and a wheelchair while David ran around to the passenger door and helped Hath out.

“Jesus, baby, were gonna need a new car. There’s no way that smell is EVER coming out.”

“Shut up, you idiot,” Hath groused.

“Ma’am, what’s your name?” the nurse, Janelle, asked as she stopped in front of Hath and took her arm. Gently, she helped Hath lower into the chair.

“Hath Rashbaum. I’m pretty sure I’m becoming a mother today.”

“Let’s get you inside then,” Janelle beamed. She adjusted the footrests, and steered the chair slowly through the doors. She stopped the chair at the nurse’s station and set the brake. Picking up a packet of paperwork, she said, “Your husband can fill this out while we wait,” she said cheerfully handing David the sheaf of paper before typing something on her computer.

“I sure as hell hope we’re not waiting too long,” Hath mumbled.

Janelle laughed. “This must be your first child.”

“Children,” David corrected. He put his hand on Hath’s abdomen. “We’re having twins.”

“No, no,” Hath said. “I’m having twins. You’re just standing there.”

“Now, children,” Janelle scolded. “Play nice.” She finished whatever she was doing on the computer, and took two long wristbands from her drawer. She wrote something on one of them and fastened it around Hath’s wrist. “Now one for Dad,” she said, writing on the second done and putting it on David. “The babies will get them too. That’s one way we make sure there are no mix-ups,” she said seriously.

“We have to worry about THAT?” Hath said, struggling to get out of the chair,

“No” Janelle said placatingly. “I promise, you and your babies are perfectly safe. Now; let’s get you settled in your room.”


“David, I’m tired of laying in this bed,” Hath said four hours later. “I need to move around.”

She’d been put on a pair of fetal monitors, which were attached to a box that was beeping softly and happily by her side. A blood pressure cuff took a measurement every half hour, just to make sure that everything was alright. An IV dripped fluids and nutrients into her bloodstream, as she wouldn’t be allowed to eat or drink anything, just in case an emergency C-Section became necessary.

The IV insertion was a chore. The first nurse couldn’t find a vein, and stuck Hath three times before giving up. A second nurse tried just once before Hath demanded the anesthesiologist. When the short, wiry man came into the room, he smiled. “I see you called in the big guns,” he said, in a voice that was too big for his small frame.

“I’m done with amateur hour,” she said. “Hook me up.” And he did.

Now, she was getting restless, and her legs were cramping. She needed to stretch.

“Are you sure getting up is a good idea?” David asked. Hath just leveled a stare at him that made him chuckle. “Yes, dear,” he said. He helped her sit, and carefully draped the monitor’s wires over her shoulder. Taking her arm, he helped her stand and pulled her IV bag behind her as she made a slow circuit of the room.

“Oh, that’s SO much better,” Hath said. She breathed deeply as she circled the room again. “Oh!” she cried as another contraction hit. She stopped to rub the side of her belly. “Damn, that was a hard one.”

“Are you sure you don’t want the epidural?”

“David, we went through this already,” she said, exasperated. “I don’t want to be stuck in bed. I want to be able to get up and walk around, or go pee or something.” “She pointed at him and narrowed her eyes. “Stop asking. It’s not that bad yet.”

“Yes, dear.”

“Ah, that’s what I like to hear,” Dr. Donovan said, as she breezed into the room. “Trying to keep Mom happy, I see. How are you feeling, Hath?”

Hath laughed tonelessly. “Like I’m about to burst,” she said. “Surely it’s time to deliver these children?”

The doctor laughed. “We won’t know until we check, and please don’t call me Shirley.”

David laughed, but Hath just groaned. “Oh God; not another Zucker fan. God help me.”

Dr. Donovan had Hath get back onto the bed and lie back, which took all three of them to accomplish. Darcy checked Hath, who moaned at the discomfort. The doctor straightened and smiled, stripping off her glove. “Three centimeters,” she said cheerfully. “You’re progressing quite nicely.”

“Three? That’s IT?” Hath exclaimed. “I’ve been in labor WAY longer than that! Isn’t it supposed to be one an hour?”

“You poor deluded woman,” Darcy said shaking her head. “Babies come on their own schedule and whenever the hell they feel like it. Would you feel better if I checked again?” the doctor asked, reaching for a fresh pair of gloves.

“No,” Hath said. “Sorry. I know it’s not your fault.”

“That’s alright. If that’s as mean as you get, this’ll be a breeze.”

Dr. Donovan told the couple she’d be back in a little while and went to go check on her other patients. Hath spent the time either walking in circles around the room or rocking in the oversized rocking chair in the corner. When she’d sit, David would sit next to her, holding her hand and rubbing her abdomen. He kept one eye on the monitor, and would let her know when a contraction was coming. Hath chuckled and told David she knew before the monitor did, and to save his breath. After a particularly strong one, Hath slumped in the chair.

Alarmed, David shook her shoulder. She let out a little snore and opened her eyes. “What’s wrong, David?”

He chuckled. “Nothing, sorry, you rest.”

“I was trying to,” Hath said. “This may be the last sleep I get for the next eighteen years.” Her eyes fluttered closed again. She’d wake up just before contractions hit, but was able to breathe and moan through them, and dozed in between. David marveled at how she could do that. This woman could apparently sleep anywhere during anything. He chuckled to himself, guessing that he’d be the one getting up with the kids in the middle of the night when they cried.

A couple hours later, Dr. Donovan was back. “So, how are we feeling?”

David answered this time. “I’m fine. She’s snoozing between contractions. She’s really wiped out, but they can’t be too bad if she’s sleeping, right?”

“Right,” she answered. Darcy checked all the various monitors, then checked Hath’s vital signs. “Everything looks good.” She looked down at Hath, who was looking up through slumberous eyes. “Ready for me to check you again?”

“Only if you promise that it’s time to push,” Hath answered testily. “These babies are squooshing my insides all to hell.”

“I’ll see what I can do,” the doctor said dryly.

Once again, and with help, Hath got up on the bed while the doctor examined her. “Great, you’re at about eight now. It won’t be too much longer. How are you holding up? Need any meds? I can give you a shot of Nubaine to take the edge off the contractions.”

“No, no, I’m okay,” Hath said, wincing as a new contraction hit. As she breathed through this one, focusing on a point on the wall, David held her hand, trying to be supportive.

He winced as Hath ground the bones together. “Easy, my love, I have to use that to make a living.”

Hath smiled. “You should have thought about that before you got me pregnant.”

David laughed. “As I recall, you were a willing participant that night.”

“Yes, but I didn’t know that we’d get preg— OH!” She bent her legs and cried out. “Darcy, I have to push.”

Darcy checked her again. “Not yet, Hath.” She nodded to the nurses, who started moving some of the extra equipment and chairs back against the walls. “Soon, I promise. Very soon. You’re at nine. Just a few minutes more.”

Chapter 121: Labor Pains

Monday, July 6, 2009

When Hath woke on her birthday, a Sunday late in September, it was with a scream of pain. David was awake in an instant, scrambling to hold her close. “What’s wrong, my love?” he asked.

“Christ, that hurt,” she said, moaning. She cradled her abdomen and marveled at how hard it was. “David, feel this,” she said, pulling his hand over to her belly. It was hard as a rock, and after a few moments, they both felt the muscles under her skin slacken a little.

“Baby,” David said, kissing her gently. “I think you’re about to get the best birthday present ever!”

Hath paled. “You mean someone else is going to push these creatures out of her body for me?”

David chuckled. “No,” he said, that’s gonna be all you, sweetheart.”

“Oh my God,” Hath moaned.

“You’ll be fine,” David said. “You can always go for the drugs if the pain gets to be too much – they’re completely safe, you know.”

“I know,” Hath answered. “I don’t know why, but I feel like I need to do this without the meds. I just think if I can do this, I can do anything.”

“Baby, you already can do anything, but whatever you want. There’s no shame in changing your mind later.” He held Hath in his arms for a little while and stroked their children. “Uh, baby, I think you’re about to have another –”

“OH MY GOD!” Hath screamed as another contraction ripped through her. “Our children are coming.” She tried to concentrate on her breathing, and started panting through the pain. In a couple minutes, the cramping had backed off, and she could breathe normally.

David checked the clock. “That was about a half hour from the last one.” He slid a look at her. “And unless you’re being melodramatic, I’d say that was a pretty powerful surge there.”

Hath laughed, though it tightened her abdominal muscles more than what was comfortable. “Stop, don’t make me laugh; it hurts. No, you ass, I wasn’t playing Drama Queen. That hurt like hell.”

“We should probably call the doctor, or do you want to go to the hospital?”

“On my birthday? No way do I want to spend the day there unless I absolutely have to.” She pouted. “Don’t first babies have a long labor anyway?”

David laughed. “Not always. April’s labors went on forever, but Alejandra’s was only a couple of hours. It depends on the woman.”

Hath snorted. “Listen to you: ‘It depends on the woman.’ Uh, okay there, doctor.”

“Shut up, I’m trying to be helpful here.”

Hath kissed him gently. “And I love you for it.” They lay together, rubbing the twins, feeling them shift and move. Finally, she sighed. “I guess you’d better call the doctor.”

“Yes, dear,” David said, making Hath stick her tongue out at him.

When David reached over to snag the phone from the nightstand, Hath pinched his ass.

“Ow!” he complained. “What the hell was that for?”

“For making fun of the pregnant woman.”

“Sheesh, no sense of humor whatsoever,” he groused with a fake pout, and pressed the speed-dial number for Hath’s doctor. He got the answering service and asked the operator to page the doctor while he waited. Long minutes later, the doctor came on the phone.

“This is Dr. Donovan,” an imperious and serious voice intoned.

“Darcy? It’s David Rashbaum. We think Hath may be in labor, and she wanted to check with you before we went to the hospital.” He smiled at his wife. “It’s her birthday, and she doesn’t want to spend it trussed up in stirrups if she doesn’t have to.” He covered the mouth piece. “Maybe you wouldn’t mind being trussed up in stirrups if we were alone?” he wagged his eyebrows up and down.

Hath swore at David and punched his arm, making him laugh.

“Let’s hold off on the congratulations just yet,” the doctor was saying, “it’s still early. Can she talk?”

“Sure, just a minute.” David put a hand over the mouthpiece as he handed the phone over to Hath. “She wants to talk to you.”

“Of course she does,” Hath answered, taking the phone and replacing David’s covering hand with hers. “I’m the one having the damned babies.”

She rolled her eyes at her husband and spoke to her doctor. “Darcy, the first pain woke me up it was so bad. My belly got hard as a rock, completely immobile, then it gave a giant heave! I’ve never felt anything like it in my life.”

Darcy chuckled. “Take a breath, Hath,” Darcy answered. “Has there been just the one? Any cramping in your back? Any fluid discharge?”

Hath took a deep, steadying breath. “No, there were two, about half an hour apart. My back is sore, but it’s been sore for the last month, so I can’t tell if it’s something new. My water hasn’t broken yet, but the babies are extremely agitated, and Oh!” She broke off as another wave of pain crashed over her. “D, time,” she panted, after the pain had passed.

David looked at the clock. “The same, about half an hour.”

“I just had another contraction,” Hath said, needlessly.

“I gathered,” Darcy said dryly. “I’d feel better getting you on a monitor, so birthday or not, it’s time to get yourself to the hospital. I’ll meet you there in about an hour.” With that, she clicked off.

Hath looked at David, eyes wide with fear. “She said to go to the hospital.”

David nodded, seeing the terror in Hath’s face. “Do you think you can stand?” David asked calmly.

Hath nodded and David helped her up. “Wow,” she said. “That really took me by surprise.”

“The contraction itself? Or that you’re having more than one?” David chuckled as Hath tried to punch his arm.

He walked Hath to the bathroom, then helped her get dressed, and between the shorts and the t-shirt, held her through another contraction. “They’re about 25 minutes apart now,” David said, checking his watch. “If they stop the Darcy will send you home, but I think this is the real deal, sweetheart; they’re getting closer together.”

“David, I’m scared,” Hath said, reaching for him.

“Shh, baby, it’s alright,” David answered, gathering her to him and rubbing her back. “What are you scared of?”

“What if I’m not a good mother?”

“Oh, honey, you’re so good at taking care of us, babies will be a cinch. C’mon, nobody’s bigger babies than we are when we’re on tour, right?”

Hath smiled. “You may just be right about that.” She kissed David deeply, and they started for the door. David got Hath settled into the car, and she pulled out her blackberry to start making calls. She called her parents first, and her father answered.

“Daddy, you ready to be a grandpa?” Hath asked her father.

“Oh, Jen, it’s today?” She heard him call for her mother to pick up the extension.

“We’re on the way to the hospital now, the contractions, ooooh!” She had to stop as another wracked her body. “Are coming hard, but not too fast, but the doctor wants us at the hospital. Today may be the day! Can you call everyone?”

“Of course, dear,” her mother answered. “Have David call us when he can, and I’m so proud of you, sweetheart. I love you. Happy Birthday.”

“Love you too Mom, Daddy, and thanks. OK, I have to call David’s mom now. We’ll talk to you at some point...”

“OK sweetie,” her father said. “Good luck.”

“John!” Hath’s mother scolded as Hath chuckled and hung up.

“Daddy says good luck,” she said, smiling. “One down, one to go.” She dialed her mother-in-law.

“Hello?” Flo answered.

“Mom? It’s Hath. Dave and I are on the way to the hospital; we think your newest grandchildren want to share their birthday with me. Hang on, let me put you on speaker.”

“Hi, Ma,” David said.

“David, where are you?”

“We’re about ten minutes from the hospital. Hath’s contractions are coming strong, but not fast, but her doctor wants her at the hospital, just in case.”

“Yes, they can always send you home if...” Flo was interrupted by a long, low moan.

“David, hurry,” Hath said. “They’re getting stronger.”

“Oh God,” David answered. “That’s only ten minutes since the last one. Ma, we gotta go. Call you as soon as we can, alright?”

“Go, GO! Take care of your wife. Don’t you dare let her deliver my grandbabies in the car!”

“D, drive faster!” Hath yelled as Flo hung up. “My water just broke.”

Chapter 120: Weddings

Monday, June 29, 2009

Goddess’ Note: The part about Stephanie’s wedding was actually written by Steph. I changed the POV and added some, but the details are hers 

The rest of the summer passed in a blur. David shuttled between NYC and home, and Hath spent lots of time at Chez Bongiovi. Whenever Jon would have to leave for something or another, Hath would pack a bag and go stay with Sam and Lyndsay. Sam told Hath stories about Jon taking care of the baby, and just how wonderful he was in making sure that she had everything she needed.

"I'm sure David will be just the same," Sam said, handing her daughter to her friend. Hath cuddled the little baby close, inhaling the sweet smell of the innocent.

"He'd better be twice as good as Jon," Hath commented. "There are two of them to help with!" The two women shared a laugh. "Seriously though," Hath said, "David's been great. He's been dealing with his stuff in the city, and coming back home to take care of me. I don't think my feet have EVER been rubbed quite so much."

Sam laughed. "I remember that," she said.

Lyndsay started to fuss, and Hath handed her back to Sam. "I think she's hungry," Hath said.

Sam took the baby and expertly put her to breast. Hath sighed, and Sam frowned. "What's wrong, Hath?"

"How the hell am I supposed to nurse two babies?" she asked. "I am not that coordinated."

Sam had to laugh at her friend's expression. "Hath, don't worry. You just do one at a time. Have David take the other for a while, then switch. It'll be fine, I promise."

That's how the weeks went through the rest of July. Hath worked from her house, but with the tour wrapped, there wasn't much for her to coordinate. There were a few stray appointments and appearances to deal with, but for the most part, she was left to her own devices. She spent a lot of time out in the yard getting sun and relaxing, and napped far more than she wanted to. To stave off the boredom, she called Tico and tried to talk him into letting her do work for his Rock Star Baby line, but he said no way.

"Querida, I would love to have your help, but David would kill me. You just rest."

Hath had grumbled something about if one more person told her to just rest, she would kill someone.

In August, Hath spent quite a bit of time on the phone with Lucy, who was getting more and more excited by the minute -- she and Richie were getting married in the middle of the month, and she was counting in hours rather than days. She was concerned about Hath traveling, though.

"Are you sure that you should be flying across the country?" Hath could practically see her friend's worry lines form between her eyebrows.

"Luce, it'll be fine, I promise," Hath said. "The doctor said I can travel, and hell, it won't be any worse than jetting all over freaking Europe."

"Yeah, but you're so close to being due!"

"Bite your tongue, woman! I still have a couple of months to go. Anyway, it'll be fine. So, how are YOU coming on the baby thing?" Lucy had confided to the other girls that she and Richie were trying for a child of their own.

Lucy started laughing. "Nothing yet, but we are having a hell of a lot of fun practicing. He's really, uh, shall we say committed to making a child."

"I'll just bet he is," Hath said.

"So when are you coming out?"

Hath checked her calendar. "We're flying out the Tuesday before, so we can relax a little before the wedding. Are you sure you don't need us to do anything?"

"Positive. Ava and Joan have just been wonderful in helping me get things done, and now there's nothing left to do except wait for the honeymoon!"

"Hah!" Hath said. "Sounds like you're already on your honeymoon, what with all the 'practicing' going on." She sighed. "I wish D and I had had the chance to go on a longer trip together."

"Oh I'm sure you'll manage to get away."

"Yeah, in another eighteen years!"

Lucy laughed. "Oh shut up. You're so excited to be a mother you can't stand it. You're not fooling anyone."

"Yeah, I know." Hath paused for a moment. "Alright, Lucy, I need to go. John is sitting on my bladder again."

Lucy chuckled. "You know, when you talk about your son, I always think you're talking about Jon."

"That'll make interesting conversation once we're talking about nursing and poopy diapers and his cute little winkie."

Three weeks later, Hath and David were on their way to LA to watch their friends get married. The flight was uneventful if not uncomfortable, and every time she had to go to the lav, Hath blushed as she remembered the last time she and David had flown together. "No chance of that now," she said to herself as she tried to maneuver around the little cubby. "We both wouldn't fit this time around!"

Richie and Lucy absolutely refused to let their friends stay at a hotel, so their house was full. Lucy’s mother, David and Hath, Stephanie, Matt, and Michael, Jon, Sam, and Lyndsay, and Tico, Alejandra, and Hector were all in residence by Thursday afternoon. Friday afternoon, the group loaded up into vans, cars, and SUVs and headed out to the beach for the rehearsal. Lucy had always wanted to get married on the beach, and Richie indulged her. They met the minister who told them what was going to happen and where and when. They had opted for a small wedding; just family and close friends. Neither wanted a huge splashy Hollywood 'do.

Saturday morning was beautiful. Not a single hint of a cloud dared mar the beautiful blue sky. Hath woke up with David wrapped around her, his arms cradling their children. His fingers were laced together, and Hath had to wake him up in order to slip from his grasp.

"D, let go," Hath said, turning her head to kiss her husband's cheek. "I need to get up."

"Don't wanna let go," he mumbled, nuzzling her hair.

"You have to let me up. Your daughter is seeing to that."

“Tell her to knock it off,” he muttered, kissing her neck.

Hath laughed. “Yeah, like she’s gonna listen to me.” She kissed David. “She’s totally going to be a Daddy’s girl. You tell her.”

David chuckled and shifted until his mouth was against Laura’s tiny fist which poking out. “Sweetheart, get off Mommy’s bladder. I want to kiss her for a while.”

Hath waited a minute before shaking her head. “Nope, she’s not listening to you either.”

“Laura, honey,” David said, “If you stop, I’ll buy you a pony…”

“Cut that out!” Hath said swatting at her husband’s head. “Nice lesson you’re teaching her. Now get off me before I pee the bed.”

She managed to get herself out of bed, and lumbered into the bathroom. After finishing her business, she drew on her robe and went back to the bedroom. “When are you guys leaving?” The men were going to a hotel for the day. Lucy had insisted that Richie not see her before the wedding, so he had spent the night at a nearby hotel. The rest of the men refused to leave their women, so after the rehearsal dinner, Richie headed off to the hotel, and the rest of them headed back to Richie’s house.

Now, the men were gathering their stuff and spending the day with Richie while the girls took care of whatever they had to do. David looked at his wife, and wished he didn’t have to go. He checked his watch. “We’re leaving in an hour or so,” he said. “Plenty of time for a little see-ya-later-sex.” He threw back the sheet and climbed out of bed. As he crossed the room, there was a pounding on the door.

“You up yet?” Jon called through.

David laughed. “Yeah, yeah.”

“You decent?”

“She is, I’m not,” David called back.

The door cracked open an inch. “Hath, Lucy is looking for you, and sent me to collect you.”

“Gimme a minute to get dressed, boss, and I’ll be right out.”

“Don’t make me come back for you,” Jon warned. “I won’t knock next time.”

Hath chuckled. “How does he do that?” she asked.

“You mean have the worst timing ever?” David shook his head and took his wife in his arms. “Years of practice.” He kissed her soundly. “You’d better go see what Lucy wants, and I should get dressed and go rescue Richie from his loneliness.”

They showered and dressed, and came down to the sitting room hand-in-hand.

“’Just a minute’, Jeeves?” Jon said, raising an eyebrow. “That was way more than just a minute.”

“What can I say,” Hath said, leaning into David. “He distracts me SO well.” She tilted her head up for a kiss. The twins chose that moment to start to fight. “Oh!” she said, breaking the kiss and putting her hands on either side of her belly. “They’re fighting again.”

Lucy came over to feel the children bumping and pushing in there. “Doesn’t that hurt?” she asked.

“Only when they get their fingers stuck in my ribs,” Hath answered. “Otherwise, it just feels a little weird, that’s all. Where’s Sam and Lyndsay?”

Lucy stayed with her hands glued to the twins until they settled down. “They’re in the sunroom, I think. Jon, Dave, you guys better get going. We have girly stuff to do, and Richie needs some company.”

David laughed. “You’re not going to get anything done with your hands wrapped around my kids,” he said.

“Yeah, yeah,” Lucy said, smiling. “Just go.”

When the men were gone, the women went to take their showers and get dressed. Lucy had arranged for them to have their hair and makeup done at Ava’s favorite salon, and once Ava and Joan arrived at the house, the girls all set out. They spent the morning laughing and talking, getting manicured, pedicured, primped and prettied. They had lunch brought into the salon, and by the time they were done, they all looked like they were ready for fashion magazines.

They got back to Lucy and Richie’s house by mid-afternoon; in plenty of time to dress for the early evening beach wedding. Hath struggled to get into her dress and had to have Stephanie zip it for her. “I can’t believe how freaking BIG I look in this thing,” she groused. “Seriously, this was NOT made for a pregnant woman.” The gray silk sheath was darted generously in the front to leave room for her abdomen. It hung to the floor and looked great -- from the back. “Ugh, and look, my boobs are practically falling out of this thing.”

Stephanie clucked and patted Hath’s shoulder. “Now you know damned well you look like a beautiful pregnant woman, and this dress is fine. It is not too revealing, though David will surely appreciate the generous cleavage. Now suck it up. This is Lucy’s day.”

“I know, you’re right, I’m just being silly.” She squared her shoulders, thrusting her ample chest forward. “Let’s go wait with the others.”

The bridesmaids were all together in the foyer, waiting on Lucy. “Aunt Hath, the twins are so big!” Ava said shyly. Her eyes got wide. “And they’re moving!”

“Want to feel?” Hath asked. At Ava’s nod, Hath put the girl’s hands on her stomach.

A few minutes later, Lucy’s mother called down to them. “Here she comes, ready or not!”

The women all sucked in a breath as Lucy descended the staircase. Her dress was a simple sheath like theirs, but of the purest white. It had a short train in the back, and drifted down a few steps behind her. Her hair was piled on top of her head, and her veil floated around her shoulders like a delicate cloud. Around her neck was a simple string of pearls; a wedding gift from her soon-to-be husband. Lucy’s mother trailed down the stairs behind her, gently blotting a tear from her eye.

“Lucy, you look stunning!” Alejandra called to her. “Simply beautiful.”

Ava smiled. “Daddy won’t know what hit him.”

And he didn’t.

When Richie, resplendent in a dove-gray tuxedo, saw his bride-to-be walking down the beach toward him, his heart stopped. He couldn’t believe that this gorgeous creature agreed to be his. He thought he was the luckiest man on the planet. When she said “I do”, and he slid the diamond-crusted band on her ring finger, and accepted a matching band on his, he thanked every god he’d ever prayed to for the day Lucia walked into his life.

That night, as David took the pins out of Hath’s up-do and brushed out her hair for her, she wistful. “It really was a gorgeous day.”

David swept Hath’s hair to one side and kissed her shoulder. “You were beautiful today.”

Hath rolled her eyes. “I was bloated and swollen, and looked like a frump next to Steph and Sam.”

“You looked pregnant and glowing and MINE,” David gently corrected. “Like I said; beautiful.”

Hath stood and wrapped her husband in a hug. “Have I told you today that I love you?”

“Only a dozen times, I think it’s time for another one.” He smiled and kissed her lips softly.

“I love you,” Hath said, closing her eyes and drawing him deeper into the kiss.

In September, it was Stephanie and Matt’s turn. If Hath thought she was huge before, by the first week of September, she was enormous. She was worried that she was going to be too big for anything, much less standing up for one of her closest friends. But Hath was up in Stephanie’s room, helping her thread small white flowers through her curls. The last one in, Hath had Stephanie turn for her, to make sure everything was perfect.

“Well?” Stephanie said. Stephanie’s pale silver dress shimmered in the late afternoon light that was streaming in through the window. She had matching peep-toe sandals that poked out from under the dress’ hem. “You look gorgeous,” Hath proclaimed. She leaned in to give her a peck on the cheek. “You’re going to knock Matt on his ass.”

Steph laughed. “That was my intention,” she said. Stephanie ran her hands over Hath’s swollen belly, “I’m so glad you could be here Hath. I wasn’t sure you’d want to travel so far given how close to your due date you are.”

Hath smiled and took Steph’s hands again, “I wouldn’t have missed this for the world, Steph.” They hugged again. “Besides, David keeps telling me he can’t wait to kiss the bride.”

Smiling, Stephanie moved to the window and looked out over the lawn. Lucie and Richie, Jon, Sam and Lindsay, David; she had been surprised when they all said that they would come. David had given her such a pout. “We always take care of family,” he had said, making Stephanie tear up. The guys looked so handsome in their suits and the girls were stunning in their summer dresses. It was the perfect late summer day; blue skies and sunshine and most importantly, not too hot.

A knock at the door startled Stephanie from her musings, and she watched Hath walk slowly across the room to open it. Hath had chosen a pale peach dress with tiny flowers along the hem and was barefoot; shoes were simply too uncomfortable to her now. It was Michael, ready to escort her mother down the aisle. Hath blew Stephanie a kiss and went back to join David on the lawn.

“Ready mom?” he asked. Stephanie wondered when her little boy had gotten to be all grown up.

“I’m ready, are you?”

Michael nodded and took her hand, “Let’s go.”

“Is that the last one before the babies come?” Hath asked later that evening, holed up in their hotel room. “I don’t think I can stand squishing into one more fancy dress. It’s huge t-shirts and baggy maternity shorts from here on out.

David laughed. “That should be it for now,” he said. “When we get home, you can wear whatever you want. Hell wear nothing if you want.”

Hath chuckled. “Yeah, you’d like that, wouldn’t you. Not gonna happen.”

David took Hath into his arms. “Can’t fault a guy for trying,” he said.

“No, I surely can’t.” She kissed his mouth. “I just wish they’d hurry up and come already.”

David put his hands on her abdomen. “Me too,” he said. “I can’t wait to meet them.”

Chapter 119: Welcome Lyndsay!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Goddess’ Note: Most of this post was lifted directly from the Football Forum fanfic on [the old] T’s Place. I made some modifications to make it fit into my view of the story, but the Sam/Jon stuff was written by T.

When Jon got to the hospital, he was happy to see that Hath had been in true Goddess form. Upon arrival, she had informed the hospital staff just exactly whose baby they were delivering, explaining the need for extra security, private waiting rooms, and the discretion of every member of the staff. She had known that Jon would be extremely pissed if paparazzi managed to reach Sam or the baby. A concerned staff member hurriedly led him to the labor and delivery room where they had put Sam. He heard her long before he ever actually reached the room. She was screaming that she was going to cut off a piece of his anatomy that he was kind of fond of. At his ashen face, the nurse told him not to worry, that lots of women threatened that during labor but that they seldom meant it.

"Oh, she means it," Jon said, grinning. "She rarely says anything she doesn't mean. But, I'm sure I'll be forgiven before the morning."

"Somehow, I'm sure you're right," the nurse told him, flashing a knowing smile and opening the door. "Here ya go."

Sam was in the bed, sitting up with Hath wiping the sweat off her forehead and Lucy sitting by the bed holding her hand. However, after closer inspection, he realized Lucy wasn't holding Sam's hand, Sam was squeezing Lucy's.

After the contraction had passed, Sam yelled, "I want an epidural!" that's when her eyes focused on Jon. "Jon, get me an epidural!"

Lucy quietly moved away from the bed so that Jon could take Sam's hand and sit in her chair. Jon wrapped Sam's small hand in both of his. "Baby, you said you wanted to do this naturally, without any drugs," he calmly reminded his wife.

"I lied," she said quickly, "no, actually, I've just changed my mind. In fact, I've changed my mind about all of this. I've decided I don't want to be a mom; I don't want to have a baby." She said the words with such determination that for a brief second he almost thought she could accomplish that.

"I think it's a little late for that now, baby," he told her. Hath and Lucy nodded in agreement.

"Don't you tell me it's too late," she demanded. "I'll do whatever the hell I want to."

"Okay, baby," he placated. "Do what you want," he told her that just as the next contraction hit. Her grip on his hand almost cut off the circulation. He wouldn't have been surprised to find out she'd crushed bones. He waited until the contraction had faded away, before asking her, "Sam, baby, are you sure you want the drugs? I don't mind going and getting someone to give you something." He didn't say it out loud, but he actually would prefer if she'd take some sort of drugs. He couldn't stand to see her in this much pain.

Both Hath and Lucy watched Jon closely. They could see his struggle to remain calm for Sam's sake. Hath jerked her head toward the door and Lucy got the message. The two women quietly left the room, leaving the couple alone. They made their way to the private waiting room that had been arranged for them and found Richie, David and the others already there.

Richie stopped his pacing at their entrance. "Any news?"

"Not yet," Lucy answered, moving into his arms.

Through the long hours of Sam's labor, Hath, Lucy or Stephanie would quietly enter the labor room and sit on the opposite side of Sam's bed and hold her hand, or just get news to take out to the others.

Several threats, pleas and screams later, at 3:36 am EDT, Lyndsay Katherine Bongiovi screamed her first cries. Her father was the first to hold her, holding her down close so that her mother could see her beautiful face. Jon was barely able to tell Sam how much he loved her before she was falling asleep in exhaustion.

When Jon went out into waiting room, the grin on his face told the occupants of the room that their wait was over. "All's fine. Sam's sleeping, and Lyndsay's being taken care of. They've said that you could all go to the nursery and see her through the glass. The name on her bassinet is Sinclair, just to try and avoid the paparazzi getting a picture."

There were loads of handshakes and hugs and kisses, and backslapping going on, with Jon taking it all in stride. Everyone was just happy that mother and baby made it through it all okay.

When Hath and David went to the nursery to visit Lyndsay, Hath’s eyes teared up. “They’ll be looking in on our babies next,” she said.

“Hopefully you won’t go into labor at a show.”

Hath laughed. “Hopefully Jon won’t schedule anything for this fall,” she countered.

“But there’s Joe,” David said. “We have that musical...”

Hath flapped a hand. “I can handle Joe,” she said. She wrapped her arms around her babies. “Another couple months, kids,” she said softly, “and you can meet your cousin.”


The next morning, standing at the nursery window, Lucy was wrapped in Richie's arms looking at the beautiful addition to the Bongiovi family when a flash went off startling them both and a voice called out, "Richie, which one is the newest Bongiovi?"

Richie didn't even have time to react before Lucy had snatched the camera, slammed it against the wall and told the reporter to send Richie the bill. Security guards appeared quickly to drag the guy away.

"Let's go see Sam," Richie said, trying not to laugh, as he pulled his little spitfire away from the nursery.

Later, in Sam's room, Lucy was surprised when Sam asked if she wanted to hold Lyndsay, but gladly took the baby from her mother's arms. Staring down at the baby in awe, Lucy began to tear up. This was what it was all about. Love. Love of the unconditional variety. She made her decision then, but decided to wait until they were alone to tell Richie. She wanted to get started immediately on a baby of their own.

After Richie and Lucy left, Jon sat on the side of Sam's bed while she held their sleeping daughter in her arms. "I love you," he told her, the emotion pouring out of him.

"I love you too," she answered. "Do me a favor?"

"Of course, anything you want."

"Go on the forum and tell anyone that might not already know that Lyndsay is finally here."

"Sure thing, baby. As soon as I get back to the hotel."

"Baby," Sam began, "It's almost 3:00. You need to get back to the hotel now. You have another show tonight."

"Yeah, I guess you're right," he reluctantly agreed. "I hate to leave you two."

"We'll still be here tonight when you're done with work," she said, smiling up at him.

“And we’ll be here with her,” Hath said, coming into the room. “D’s outside waiting on you, Boss.”

“Thanks for everything, Hath,” Jon said, crossing the room to give her a brief hug. “Sam told me you took charge at the venue, then here until I arrived.”

“Isn’t taking care of you part of my job description? I don’t know of anything that’s a bigger part of you than Sam and Lyndsay,” she said. “Congratulations, she’s beautiful.”

Jon looked at his daughter, now returned safely to her mother’s arms.

“Yes,” he said. “She is. Both of them are.”

Chapter 118: No, Jon, It’s Not A Joke

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Goddess’ Note: Most of this post was lifted directly from the Football Forum fanfic on [the old] T’s Place. I made some modifications to make it fit into my view of the story, but the Sam/Jon stuff was written by T.

Stephanie, Lucy, and even Hath got up and danced for most of the show, but Sam just wasn't quite up to it.

The guys rocked through several songs and had just finished Whole Lot of Leavin' when Jon stepped up to the white mic stand and began to talk to the crowd.

"How we doin' so far, okay?" The crowd roared in response. "This next song wasn't a song that we did very much live, but it happens to be my wife's favorite song." The crowd let out another round of screams, even though they had no idea which song he was talking about. "Well, okay, it's her favorite Bon Jovi song, and since she's here tonight...." he finished the sentence after nodding to David, "Gimme some keys please!"

David began to play, and Sam smiled as Jon began to sing In These Arms. She stood up for that one and just swayed slightly as Jon sang to her. There had been many nights they'd talked on the phone with him in some anonymous hotel room somewhere else in the world, and he would sing the chorus of that song to her.

"And, I would give anything, my blood, my love, my life,
if you were in these arms tonight.
I'd hold ya, I'd need ya,
I'd get down on my knees for you, and make everything all right,
if you were in these arms....

I'd love ya, I'd please ya,
I'd tell ya that I'd never leave ya,
And love you 'til the end of time,
If you were in these arms tonight

Jon had barely finished the song, when Sam grabbed Hath's arm with her left hand and Lucy's with her right. Stephanie, who stood on the other side of Lucy, didn't realize anything was amiss; she just continued clapping and screaming.

In unison, Hath and Lucy asked, "What's wrong?"

"My water just broke," Sam exclaimed.

"Holy shit," Hath cried.

"FUCK!" Lucy yelled at the same time.

Stephanie's head jerked around at their expletives. "What's wrong?"

Lucy quickly explained, while Hath took charge.

"Stephanie, go to the side of the stage,” she said. “On the way, if you encounter any security people send one to help Lucy and I get Sam to the cars in back. Have the next one get you to Jon as quickly as possible. Then meet us at the hospital. Massachusetts General is the closest."

Sam interrupted Hath's litany of commands. "No! Don't tell Jon. He'll freak."

“Relax, he won't freak," Hath said calmly, "he's been through this four other times."

"Stephanie," Sam commanded, "find someone to tell Richie. Let Richie tell Jon. Make sure that they tell Jon I said for him to finish the show, then come to the hospital. I'm sure Lyndsay will still be a few hours before making an appearance."

"Are you sure?" Stephanie asked. At Sam's nod, she turned to go, but Lucy's hand on her arm had her spinning back around.

"Find Takumi, Richie's guitar tech. Tell him," Lucy told her. "He'll handle the rest."

Stephanie took off at a run. Slowing down only slightly when other fans blocked her path.

Hath and Lucy each held one of Sam's arms and followed behind Stephanie more slowly. They were almost to the metal barrier between the crowd and backstage area when one of the security guys came running up to them.

"I've got one of the golf carts waiting just beyond the barrier, we'll get her to the backstage exit quickly. Paul's already called for an ambulance. It should be waiting there when we get there." He bent down and scooped Sam up in his arms, before he'd even finished talking and walked away with long strides, leaving Hath and Lucy to follow along behind. "I'm sorry about this Mrs. Bongiovi," he told Sam.

"For what, my daughter's lack of timing?"

"No, for just picking you up without asking first."

"No worries, OWWWW!" she finished on a scream.

"Hang on, Mrs. B, please don't have that baby in this arena, the boss'd kill me."

When they got to the golf cart, he put her down gently, and Hath and Lucy quickly got on the seats on the back. At the back door, the guard seemed relieved to hand Sam off to the paramedics, and Hath and Lucy had a minor argument with the paramedic that tried to tell them that only one of them could ride with Sam. He only acquiesced when Hath subtly suggested that she might be in labor as well; so, technically they were taking two patients and only one passenger.

Once Sam was up in the ambulance, she pleaded with the driver not to run the siren, at least not until they were well away from the arena, because she didn't want any of the reporters that might be hanging around to get noisy enough to follow them to the hospital. The driver agreed, but only because they weren't that far from the hospital, and could be there in just a few minutes, with or without the siren.


After sending a security guard back for Sam and the others, Stephanie determinedly went in search of Matt. She knew he would be just to the side of the stage with his eyes on the fan pit on Richie's side of the stage. His job was to make sure that none of those women 'attacked' Jon and to pry any off that got that brave. When she got to her fiancé, she quickly told him the problem, and he took her by the hand and practically dragged her to Takumi. When they reached the guitar tech, they were actually under the stage. He had just come down the ramp from handing Richie the guitar for It's My Life and was putting the other one back on the long rack of guitars. It only took Stephanie a minute to explain the problem, while Takumi kept at his job. He had only been half listening to her excited chatter until she got to the phrase 'her water broke'. Then he realized just how important of a job she was asking of him.

"Are you shitting me?" he asked. "You want me to tell Rich instead of Jon? Why?"

"Sam wanted Rich to tell Jon so that he wouldn't freak out. She doesn't want him to interrupt the show."

"Gotcha. I can handle this," Takumi told her. He decided to wait and tell Richie right after I'll Be There For You while Jon was making his way to the platform. Richie could tell the boss when he made it back to the stage.

That wasn't exactly the way it went down though. After Takumi told Richie, the guitarist made a beeline for the platform. Jon didn't even bat an eye when his friend joined him during the first verse of Make a Memory. Rich had been joining him every so often; it just depended on how the show was going and Richie's mood.

Jon noticed that when Rich joined him at the mic, his friend was wearing a smirk like he knew something Jon didn't. During the bridge, Jon found out just what that was.

Richie leaned over and yelled in Jon's ear, "Sam's having the baby."

It took a three count for it to sink in. Jon's eyes went wide and with his mouth still at the mic, he yelled, "You mean, now?"

Being the professionals that they are, the rest of the band never missed a beat. When Richie nodded, Jon's eyes scanned the section where he knew Sam had been sitting while he continued to sing the song. He was really hoping this was one of Richie's sick practical jokes. But, when he couldn't find Sam where she was supposed to be, he began to worry. When the song was over, Richie quickly told him about Sam's wishes that he continue the show. Jon took a moment to explain to the crowd that his wife was in labor, told them about her wishes that he continue the show, and apologizing in advance if he seemed distracted for the remainder of the concert.

During the break before the encore, Jon explained to the other band members what was going on, and told them there would only be a two song encore. He was dropping Mercy and only going to do Wanted and Prayer. He wanted to get to the hospital as soon as possible. Their bows were brief, with Jon being the first to leave the stage instead of the last as usual. He ran straight to the exit where Obie was waiting to take him to the hospital.

Chapter 117: Boston Bound

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Goddess’ Note: Most of this post was lifted directly from the Football Forum fanfic on [the old] T’s Place. I made some modifications to make it fit into my view of the story, adding Hath stuff, but the Sam/Jon stuff was written by T.

It was Wednesday morning, and Hath was going to start her trek to Boston with the girls. Jon had flown on ahead, needing to take care of personal appearances and what he called “stupid-ass media shit”. Stephanie was on her way, and once she arrived, the girls, with David in tow as their pack-mule, would head out for Boston in a gorgeous stretch Lincoln.

That morning, Sam woke up early. She hadn't slept well at all. Her lower back hurt so bad and nothing seemed to help it. Jon had rubbed it for her until she'd fallen asleep the first time, but she couldn't bring herself to wake him up to continue to rub it for her every time she woke up after that.

Her back was still bothering her when the limo arrived, but there was no way in hell she was missing this concert and missing out on a few nights spent with her friends. Her doctor had told her back when she was still in her first trimester that it was safe to take Tylenol for headaches, so she took a couple for her backache before she joined her friends in the limo. The driver had stopped at Hath and David's first, so the couple and Stephanie were already ensconced in the plush leather seats. While the driver put Sam's bag in the trunk, David jumped out of the car to help Sam climb in.

"Hey there little mama," he greeted her, "you look positively radiant."

"Yeah, yeah," she told him grumpily, "cut the shit. I know I look fat and tired."

He laughed as he took her hand and helped her to slowly sink into the car. "Jon said you were grumpy lately."

"He did, did he? Are you sure he didn't say I was being bitchy?"

Hath laughed. "Of course he wouldn't say that. He loves you."

"Sarcasm so becomes you," Sam told her friend, laughing.

"How're you feeling?" Stephanie asked, as David joined them, and the front door slammed signaling the driver had re-entered the vehicle.

"I'm fine," Sam answered. Jeez, she was so ready for this baby to get here so everyone would quit asking her how she was feeling. She shared a look with Hath. “Stop smiling over there, you’re next, you know.”

“I know,” Hath said, “but you’re the one they’re all going to be pawing over tonight, not me. You shoulda borrowed my t-shirt.” Hath’s shirt tonight was “Touch My Belly And Die”.

The five hour drive went by in plush comfort. Hath and Stephanie kept up a constant chatter with David interjecting the occasional smart ass comment. Sam had a very hard time not complaining about how bad her back was hurting, but she didn't want anyone to worry about her.

David noticed her rubbing at the small of her back. He watched her in silence for several minutes wondering just how to go about offering his services as a back-rubber without looking like he was renewing the partner swapping practical joke. Finally, with a look at Hath who had also noticed and gave him a nod, David said, "Stephanie change places with me, please."

Stephanie quickly agreed and moved to sit next to Hath. David smiled at Sam. "Sam, honey, turn around and let me rub your back for you," he ordered gently.

Sam obeyed, thanking him and explaining that Jon had been giving her back rubs for the past few days. She told them how Jon had been spoiling her while trying to make up for scheduling the dates in July. Sam told them how she had really missed him Sunday and Monday night, because she'd really missed the back and foot rubs.

David continued to rub Sam's back off and on for the remainder of the trip. He joked about them not telling Jon about him having his hands on Jon’s wife, because he liked breathing through his nose.

The limo pulled up to the back stage entrance, and David jumped out to help each woman out of the back seat. Lucy came running up to them.

"I'm so happy to see all of you," she said in greeting giving each woman a hug. When she hugged Sam, she teased, "Jon's been driving all of us crazy saying 'Is she here yet?' over and over."

"Yeah, now he'll just find something else to bitch about," David announced.

They were all still laughing when David ushered them past the security guard at the backstage door. Sam disappeared into Jon’s dressing room, and Stephanie went with Hath to David’s.

“Doesn’t he have to get changed?” Steph balked at the door.

“Yeah,” Hath said, “but he can go put on his pants in the bathroom. Or you can close your eyes. Or you can watch.”

David laughed and disappeared into the bathroom when Stephanie turned red. “You are an evil, evil pregnant woman,” she said to her friend. “What would you do if I said I wanted to watch?”

Hath shrugged. “After everything that’s gone on, having you see David in his tighty-whities is nothing.”

“Tighty-whities, huh?”

“Yep, my D is old fashioned.”

David came out of the bathroom a few minutes later, showered, and shirtless. “Damn, that feels better,” he said. “You girls want to pick out my shirt for tonight?”

“You have anything decent to pick?” Stephanie countered.

“Oh, and we invited you into our HOME!” David said, his smile and twinkling eyes belying the indignation.

“C’mon, baby,” Hath cooed. “Even your kids say your clothes suck.”

David crouched down in front of Hath. “Is that true my babies?” he said into her abdomen. “Do my clothes really suck?” He was rewarded with kicks from both babies. “Traitors,” he said, frowning while the girls laughed.

After picking out a shirt for David, Stephanie and Hath left him to his own devices. They met up with Lucy in the hall, with Richie close behind. He took one look at Hath’s t-shirt and started to laugh. “Well, that’s to the point, darlin’,” he said.

“Exactly,” Hath said, smugly.

“But I know you don’t mean me, right?” he said, reaching for her.

“Oh no, Sambora, I mean especially you. Hands off, mister. You want a pregnant belly, make one yourself.”

He looked at Lucy, who blushed and pulled Stephanie away by the elbow. Richie shook his head. “I’m working on it,” he said softly.

“Shit, sorry, Rich,” Hath said just as quietly. “I wasn’t thinking.”

“Don’t worry about it,” he answered. “But now you owe me,” he said. “Free feel?”

Hath rolled her eyes and thrust out her abdomen. Richie cradled the babies with his hands. “Hey guys it’s Uncle Richie,” he said. There was a flurry of kicks and presses that made him smile.

“They’re excited for their very first concert,” Hath said. She put her hand on Richie’s arm. “Don’t worry; Lucy will get there.” She smiled. “Gotta go collect Sam. Have fun tonight.”

The girls knocked on Jon’s door, and he pulled it open, shirt flapping behind him.

“Damn, Boss,” Hath said, shaking her head.

Sam laughed. “Tongue back in your mouth, Hath, or I’m telling David!”

Hath blushed. “Shut up. How are you feeling?” she said with a sarcastic smile.

“Fuck you,” Sam countered.

"We came to kidnap your wife," Hath said to Jon.

Jon laughed. "I'll be glad to loan her to you for a couple of hours, but I want her back after the show."

Lucy jumped in. "Deal."

Jon turned to look at Sam and saw she was having trouble getting up off the sofa. He hurried over and took each of her hands in one of his and gently pulled her to her feet and into his arms. He bent to whisper in her ear, "Are you sure you're okay?"

She smiled up at him. "Yeah, I'm fine," she assured him.

Sam and the Harem barely made it to their seats before the lights went down, and soon the guys were taking the stage and the opening notes of Lost Highway filled the arena.

Chapter 116: Home At Last

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Hath was so glad to be home, even though the house was so empty. It wouldn’t be that way for long; soon it would be July and the guys would be home. HER guy would be home. Then it was a few days of local shows and David’d be all hers for the summer. Then the babies would come, and the house wouldn’t be empty for another twenty years, God willing.

It was harder coming home than she thought it would be. She’d gotten used to fending off the “sneak attacks” from the guys, where they’d ask her opinion on something, get her into a room by herself or in an abandoned hallway, and talk to the babies. Jon continued to get a kick out of the way that Laura would push against his hand when he talked to her while John continued to ignore him, Richie continued to make smart ass comments about how big Hath was getting, and Teek? He got a nostalgic look in his eyes whenever he looked at Hath’s swollen abdomen, moreso than the others.

When it was actually time to pack up the hotel suite again, this time for the last time, she had tears in her eyes.

“Baby, what’s wrong?” David asked, walking in on his wife crying. He could handle anything she dished out except tears.

Hath turned from her suitcase, and David burst out laughing at her t-shirt. She’d changed into the “Hands off, asshole” shirt. She sniffled delicately and wiped her eyes with the heels of her hands. “I’m just going to miss you, that’s all.”

“Aw, I’ll miss you too, but I’ll be home in a couple, er, few weeks.” He took her in his arms and kissed her gently.

Hath rested her head on his shoulder and wound her arms around his waist. “I know, I know. Chalk it up to hormones, okay? Packing to leave you is just making me so sad.”

David walked Hath to the bed, and sat with her on his lap. He picked up the phone and pressed a button. “Yes, hi, this is 2314, I need someone to help my very pregnant wife pack. Great, thanks.” He hung up. “Done. Now you don’ t have to pack.”

A few minutes later, there was a knock on the door and David opened it to find three 40-something housekeepers chattering to themselves. When they saw who opened the door, their words dried up. David chuckled. “Thanks for coming, ladies. My wife is not in the mood to pack, and she’s told me more than once that I’m useless in the pack-girl-shit-up department. I’ve learned not to mess with her decisions or her moods.” He winked conspiratorially at them, making them giggle. “I appreciate you helping us out.”

The women bustled into the room and looked with pity on the pregnant woman. “Poor girl,” one said. “You leave this to us.” She reached out to pat Hath’s arm, but stopped, hand hovered in mid-air, when she saw the tshirt.

Hath smiled, and read the woman’s name tag. “It’s alright, Anna,” she said. “You’re not an asshole.”

Anna and the other housekeepers laughed, and set about packing.

That was weeks-that-seemed-like-years ago. Now, she was finally counting in hours the time until David got home. She had spent a while soaking in the tub, and even longer trying to get out without killing herself. She was dressed in the sexiest maternity nightgown she could find, which wasn’t too sexy, but at least it wasn’t a long t-shirt, as she had taken to wearing. She looked at the clock as she settled into bed. Just an hour to go. She was so excited she didn’t want to wait any longer.

Her eyes glazed over as she vanished into a daydream about what David would do when he came home. She was so lost in thought that she didn’t even realize her eyelids were growing heavy. Soon, she was sleeping, a sly smile on her face.

David’s car pulled into the driveway, and he was vaulting out of it even before the driver could put the transmission into ‘park’. He called back over his shoulder, “Thanks! Just dump the bags in the front hall, okay?”

The driver smiled and nodded his asset. It wasn’t the first time he drove David back from the airport, but it was the first time David had disappeared that quickly. He chuckled to himself. David must have one hell of a wife waiting for him at home.

David flew down the hall to the great room, looking for Hath. He expected to see her curled up as best as she could do in her favorite chair pecking away at the computer. He skidded to a halt with “Hello sexy Mama” frozen on his lips. She wasn’t there. The computer was there, a glass of water was perched on the side-table, but no Hath. Frowning, he went out to the patio, but no Hath. He smiled as he ascended the stairs next; she must be waiting for him in bed. Damn he loved how their minds were in synch like that. He flew down the hall, stopping only to kick off his shoes. By the time he could smell her bath oils in the air, he was hard. He pulled his t-shirt up over his head and flung the bedroom door open. He came up short when he saw his wife sleeping in the middle of the bed.

Chuckling to himself, he stood there and looked his fill. She was propped up on a mountain of pillows, turned half on her side, reclining as a Goddess should. Her hair was piled atop her head, and damp tendrils clung to her cheeks and neck. Her slow, steady breathing was accompanied by little mewls of happiness, and he saw a smile on her face. He hoped to hell she was dreaming of him.

The covers were settled at her waist, and her hand was clutched protectively around the twins. David’s heart surged, as did other parts of his anatomy, and he couldn’t wait another moment to wrap himself around his wife. He shucked the rest of his clothes, lifted the edge of the sheet and climbed up onto the bed next to Hath. He spooned up behind her and gently draped his arm under hers, smiling when Laura kicked against his arm. He reached around a little further until he felt John press a tiny hand or foot against his palm.

David sighed contentedly. Life just didn’t get too much better than this.

His breath tickled the hair that had escaped Hath’s topknot, and she stirred. Feeling a warm, hard body pressed against her, she murmured sleepily, “Hey, you.”

David answered by gently nipping the juncture of her neck and shoulder. “Hey yourself,” he said. “So, you’re so excited to see me, you fell asleep?” he teased.

Hath smiled and turned her head for a steamy kiss. “No, you fool, I was resting up to give you a proper welcome home.”

When she would have turned to face David, he stopped her. “No, baby,” he said. “Don’t move. I’ve got it under control.”

Hath relaxed as David grazed his fingertips across her neck and shoulder. She shivered deliciously as his light touch raised gooseflesh in its wake. He ran his hand down Hath’s arm and back, lightening his touch each time. Long minutes later he ran a hand down her back and cupped her ass. Long, strong fingers kneaded the silk-covered globes, and he placed gentle kisses along her shoulder.

Slowly, David raised the hem of Hath’s nightgown, letting his fingertips graze her naked thighs. With a brief kiss on the back of her head, he slid out of bed and walked around to the other side. Hath watched as David molded pillows around the twins, and used three more to prop her knee up comfortably. Smiling, he went back around to his side and slipped into bed again.

This time, when he trailed his fingers up Hath’s thigh, he dipped them in between, skimming them across her wet, swollen lips. “Oh Hath,” David said. “You missed me.”

“Oh yes I did,” Hath moaned, reveling in the sensations David was raising in her. He stroked her again, starting at the back of her knee, and ending only millimeters away from her clit. The third time he stroked her, Hath pressed down, trying to get David to touch her where the ache was fiercest.

David chuckled. “What’s the matter, sweetheart?”

“Nothing you can’t cure if you’d just OH!” David slid a finger into her, causing her to clamp down hard. “Jesus, David, don’t stop... please... just a little AH!” She screamed as David slid a second finger into her and stroked her slowly.

“Damn, Hath, you’re so freaking tight,” he breathed against her ear. When he slid his tongue across the outer shell of Hath’s ear, she lost control, crying out his name as she came. David kept up the languorous stroking, not letting her come down from the high. When he felt her starting to peak again, he couldn’t wait any longer, and shifted slightly and replaced his fingers with his cock, sliding all the way to the hilt in one stroke.

Hath reached around to grip David’s thigh, pressing hard enough to bruise. She held on tight while David made love to her, bringing her up and over the edge again. Her nails nearly drew blood when she came the third time, but the little pricks of pain only enhanced David’s pleasure. He tilted his hips to press slightly deeper, and emptied into her, groaning her name.

They stayed joined for a long time, cuddled together and basking in the afterglow. Finally, with much effort, and not a little bit of giggling, Hath turned over to face David. Her cheeks were flushed and her pulse racing, and the twins were kicking up a storm from Mommy’s activities. She cupped his face with one hand and kissed him over and over again.

“Welcome home, sweet Papa; I missed you and I love you so much.” Hath’s voice was thick with slumber and desire. She slid a leg up David’s, rubbing it with her instep. She hooked her ankle around the back of David’s knee and anchored him to her, pressing his belly into hers. He could feel every kick and push of his children as they swam and played.

“Love you too, sexy Mama, “he answered, kissing her temple, and settling his wife in his arms.

He was wrong before. Life didn’t get too much better than THIS.

Chapter 115: Back to Normal

Saturday, February 28, 2009


I need some good ideas for t-shirts to wear around here to get the point across that I’m pissed off. I’ve only come up with a few:

"Back off, fucknut"
”Just do your damned job”
"Because I SAID so!"
“I’m pregnant, not a Buddha”

I need your help, Steph. It’s either this, or I start hitting people...
Crap, don’t start beating people up, Hath. You don’t need the hassle. Definitely go for the t-shirts, how about

“You'd look better with duct tape over your mouth! “
"All pissed off and nobody to choke. C'mere..."
"In touch with my inner bitch"
"Piss me of, and suffer the consequences"

Put the minions in a time out until they behave like they are supposed to. You're the boss and they need to understand that.

Sam told me a little bit about what you guys talked about. The way we see it, David is just so head over heels in love I don't think he can help it. The rest of them need to back off a bit and you need to tell them that. I can tell them for you when we get there if you want.

Try to get a little rest before talking to Jon. You don't want to go off on him or cry in front of him do you?
I like yours. I'm adding them to the list. Tony's gonna be a busy monkey.

I know they need to back off, and I have to make them understand that, and on some level they already know, but it isn’t the conscious level.... Oh, maybe it's just because they see the end of the tour tunnel, as it were, and are giddy about going home. Whatever the reason, they have to cut the shit. Seriously.

I so don't want to cry at or go off on Jon. Neither of those things work, though both would be gratifying, and it’s not professional. That’s why I haven’t gone to talk to him yet, I’m still too upset. I’m going to talk with him in the morning, when he goes for his run in the hotel gym, though. I have to, but I don’t want to.

And I know David can't help it. I can't blame him for it when I love that he loves me so much. I just wish he'd put a cork in it in front of the kiddies, you know?

I’ll work it out, I guess. Thanks for listening Steph.
Stephanie had never known Hath to back down from anything, and hadn’t ever seen her so upset. She wondered why in the hell David was letting this happen. She slept on it, but in the end decided to call David. He had to know what this was doing to his wife. She consulted the clock and did some quick math. It shouldn’t be too early to call, but one never knew with rock stars.

“’Lo?” a slightly sleepy voice rumbled.

“David, it’s Stephanie. Queenie. Oh hell, did I wake you?” She was rolling her eyes. It had to be close to noon where he was.

“S’alright, Stephanie, I was supposed to be up half an hour ago.” She heard him stretch and groan appreciatively as the kinks worked their way out of his back. “What’s up?”

“Listen, David, what is going on over there? I've been PM-ing with Hath and she is miserable.”

David bolted upright, totally awake now. “What do you mean ‘miserable’? Sure, she’s touchy, but that’s just the hormones.”

Stephanie smiled. The poor, deluded man. “You need to say something to the guys about the cutsey touchy, feely behavior they are laying on her. It is way too much. And if you call her hormonal to her face, she will kill you. Slowly.”

David was surprised that Hath was upset. She wasn’t showing it. “Jesus, why didn't she say anything? God, the guys just love having her and the babies around; reminds us all of our own/other/whatever kids. She's just such a happy glowing pregnant woman that she makes us all smile, and God, they – we – just love feeling the babies move, though it makes Jon miss Sam more, and Richie gets this strange look in his eyes. Teek just gets this wistful look....” David stopped when he realized he was rambling. “Aw, hell, Steph, we didn't mean anything by it...”

Stephanie chuckled. “I figured it was something like that. And maybe if you were all home it wouldn’t be a big deal. But it’s starting to impact her work.” Stephanie took a deep breath. “Look, her ‘minions’ aren't giving her the respect she deserves; they are going over her head and behind her back for all sorts of crap. This is crazy. She was hired to do a job and if no one is listening to her, what's the point?”

“Wait, what? The crew is giving her problems? None of us knew that. I know for sure Jon didn't know about the staff – he’d never have let that happen. Hell, he gave them the speech...shit, guess he has to do it again. I will get the guys to fix this. She has things running so smoothly here, we hardly have to THINK of something we want to have happen, and it gets done. Damn, I wish I had known sooner.”

“Well you know now,” Stephanie said patiently. “You need to do something. She wants to come home with us next week and doesn’t want to tell you; she just wants to disappear during one of your shows. And I'm worried about her. She says her blood pressure is up and she is way stressed out.”

“Aw hell, I don't want her having stress; and her BP is up? She never said anything. If anything happens to her or the twins, I'll never forgive myself. Thank you for telling me, Steph.”

“That’s what friends are for, David. Now go take care of your wife before she kills someone.”

“I will. See you soon, and thanks again.”

“You’re welcome. See you soon. Bye.”

While David and Stephanie were talking, Hath had gone up to the gym to talk to Jon. She watched him through the door for a minute, gathering her courage, then strode in like she owned the place.

“Morning, Hath!” Jon’s smile was wide and genuine. “What’s up? Couldn’t resist watching me run, huh?”

Hath had to chuckle. “Glad to see your ego is still firmly in place, Boss. No, I needed to talk to you about something, and this was the only place I can think of where nobody bothers you.”

Jon saw the look on Hath’s face and slowed then stopped the treadmill. “Judging by the look on your face, this is something serious. What’s happened? Are the babies okay?”

“They’re fine, Jon, but I’m not. Look.” Hath sighed. She grabbed a bottle of water from the bench and tossed it to Jon. “I feel like a bitch for even mentioning it, because I truly appreciate the love and concern you and the others show me and the twins, but do you think you guys could please stop touching and coddling me in front of the staff?”

Jon looked taken aback. “What are you talking about? We don’t...” he trailed off as he thought back over the last few weeks.

“Yeah, you do. You guys go all goofy and mushy, and the minions think it's OK to do the same, and they’ve stopped listening to me.”

“Minions?” Jon chuckled. “I’m gonna have to get them tshirts that say ‘MINION’ in stead of ‘CREW’. But what do you mean they’ve stopped listening to you?”

“They go to Tony or Obie or even Paul with questions they should be coming to me with. They try to second-guess what I want them to do, and they all look at me like I’m some fragile little creature... Bottom line is they don’t respect me anymore, and a lot if it has to do with the way you guys act around me.” Hath was blushing furiously. She took a deep breath and let it out, feeling loads better for having gotten that off her chest.

Jon was surprised, then Hath watched in amazement as ‘pissed off’ crept into his face. He grabbed his Blackberry from the gym bag on the floor, and called the crew chiefs. He arranged for a meeting in an hour, before they went about their business for the day. Hanging up, he looked at Hath. “Don’t worry, they won’t know you finked on them.” Hath started to protest but Jon held a hand up. “I’m kidding, Hath. You should have come to me when it started to be a problem, though.”

“I thought I could handle it, but I can’t. I seriously don’t want to go to jail, Boss, and I swear, I am about THIS close to killing someone.”

“I can tell, now that I really look at you.” He crossed to Hath, and gave her a brief hug.

“Ugh, Boss, you stink.” She laughed and pushed at him when he wouldn’t let her go. “What’s David going to think when I go back to our room smelling like you?”

“He’s gonna think I’m one lucky guy.” He wagged his eyebrows and held her tighter for a moment before dropping his arms.

“Oh, you’re impossible,” Hath said, backing away, chuckling.

“I’m glad you’re smiling. Now, don’t worry about the crew; we’ll get that straightened out.”

“Thanks, Boss.”

After breakfast, Hath noticed things slowly getting back to normal – or what passed for normal around the backstage area. The crews were doing what they were supposed to do, and when there were issues, they found Hath. She was still going to have Tony make up those t-shirts for her, though. No sense in letting a good idea go to waste.

That afternoon, Hath called Stephanie to give her an update.

“So, he called a meeting and told the team if they had a problem working for me, they could work somewhere else,” Hath said. “I didn’t believe it for a minute, but apparently they did. He told them that they were to treat me with respect, regardless of what the band did. Jon told them they earned the right to be familiar and friendly with me, and the rest of them didn't.’

“Wow,” Stephanie said. “He doesn’t do anything halfway, does he?”

“Nope, not at all. So the funny thing that happened today... after lunch, Jon came and apologized to me again, and said he promised that he'd only put his hands on me in private. His face was so serious, I burst out laughing.”

The two women shared a laugh over that one. Stephanie sobered first. “God, that must have been priceless.”

“Hell, he didn't really realize what he had said at first, but once he did, he started to chuckle, which made me laugh out loud. The twins liked Mommy laughing, and started kicking up a storm. Jon saw my face, and looked around furtively before putting his hands on my belly.”

“You know what this means, right?” Stephanie asked.

“No, what?”

Steph laughed. “Now they're gonna sneak attack you.”

“Oh hell. Well, it’s only for a few more weeks, then I come home. I’m going to take the doctor's advice, and not go to Canada or Michigan.”

“Oh good,” Steph said. “You need some time to unwind and relax. What about the summer?”

“Oh, I’m still going to be working, but from the offices at home. Don’t quite know how that’s going to work, but I’ll figure it out. As for the summer, I'm going to Boston because it's close, and Sam and I are going in a limo and don't have to fly. That ought to be fun. Hey, are you flying straight out to Beantown, or do you want to come to Jersey and ride with us? Lucy's flying in on the 7th, and we're all going on the 8th. We may have to stop a zillion times on the way to pee but it should still be fun.”

“I actually hadn’t decided what to do yet, but that sounds like fun! Count me in!”