Capturing the Moment
Things were finally quieting down at the hospital. It was getting late; the sun had set long ago, causing everyone to begin heading home, little by little, until they were all gone. The roads were still deplorable, but most of them had walked there anyways- it was all worth it to see Regina so happy.
Not that he was trying to be rude, but Robin really didn't want everyone there in the first place. He got that they were concerned; Regina needed the comfort of them being there as well, but he just wasn't in the mood for talking to everyone. All he needed right then was his immediate family.
"You're getting tired, aren't you?" Will asked, the yawn coming from his nephew not going unnoticed. Henry gave him a look.
"No, I'm just ready to see Caroline again," he replied. Secretly, he loved saying his little sister's name- it felt so new to him.
"When can we see Mommy?" Roland asked, perking up slightly.
It felt rather lonely being the only few people in the hospital, besides the nurses and Whale. Will had control over both boys while Robin checked up on Regina and the baby again, so he sat the two of them down on the hard metal chairs of the food preparation room and forced them to eat something so they wouldn't starve.
"When your dad says it's okay," he explained, "they have your mom under all sorts of drugs- she's been knocked out for at least a solid two hours."
Henry sighed, seeming more interested in his overripe apple than anything else. He was beyond bored; hospitals were just plain uninteresting. He remembered when he had last been there, when he had taken that sleeping curse. Those weren't good memories, mostly because they reminded him of the time when he hated his mom, and wanted Emma to be his one and only mom. But that was a long time ago.
"Roland, why don't you close your eyes, you can see her tomorrow," Will said gently, seeing the boys head was about to fall limply onto the table like a doll.
The child shook his head. "I have to see Mommy."
Will rolled his eyes. "Fine, but you're going to pass out soon. Don't be surprised if we leave you on the floor while we all go home."
That put a horrified look on his face. "No! If Henry can stay up late, so can I."
They could argue for hours. Will understood he wanted to see his sister, but this was getting a tad ridiculous. Well, so was giving birth in the back of a diner. The whole idea made him not want to eat there for the rest of his life- though he would never tell Ruby that.
Will just knew that if Regina didn't wake up soon, he was going to have a riot on his hands.
Whale had just finished taking her off the painkillers she had been on for hours, leaving them both with the reassurance that their child was right in the next room, ready for another feeding whenever Regina was ready. Or, rather, awake.
Robin originally planned to check up on the boys, but he quickly became transfixed by how precious Regina looked asleep on that hospital bed. Her hair stood out sharply against the crisp white sheets, falling past her shoulder in a braid and framing her face perfectly. Snow had came in and touched up her hair before she left with David, insisting that the first pictures they took with Caroline had to be perfect when they decided to take them.
Robin had sat himself down in the only chair in the room, simply staring at her while lost in thought.
In fact, Robin was so out of it, he didn't even notice Granny come in behind him.
"She's still asleep?" She asked, causing him to jump. When she saw him whip around with an undeniable startled look on his face, she held back a laugh.
"Relax, it's just me. Has everyone already left?"
He nodded, turning his gaze back to Regina to see if she showed any signs of waking up.
"The medicine they've given her is so unnecessary," she muttered, mostly to herself, "she would've been fine with an aspirin and bed rest for a couple hours."
Robin smiled. "Well, you sure know what you're doing. I don't know what we would've done without you." He said, sincerity showing through his voice.
"As I said, happy to help," she replied simply, putting a hand on his shoulder, "you did good today too. I honestly thought you were going to hurt me when I told you there was no way out- your car is still parked at my diner, by the way."
He figured the keys were probably still in the diner as well. "I suppose we'll be there whenever we can to move it."
"You two have got a busy schedule for the next few months," she remarked, "how in the world are you going to fit marriage into this? Ruby's been fangirling about it for as long as you've been back- it's getting annoying."
Her enthusiasm was definitely emphatic. "I can't wait to finally be married to her. It just feels like we already are, with the baby and everything."
"She won't be easy to take care of, just being honest," Granny said, though he already knew that, "but it'll all be worth it. Might I suggest getting a bigger car? Getting that baby in there with her car seat will not be fun, trust me. I've seen Regina nearly kill herself over getting Roland strapped in far too many times- she's had that Mercedes forever now, get a minivan or something easy."
Robin had no idea what a minivan was, but he nodded anyways. She then glanced down at his tattoo, seeming more noticeable than ever.
"Regina had a good heart, she just needs someone to protect it for her. She's seen so much more than she ever needs to- that's why I'm glad she found you."
The words of kindness came so quickly, Robin wasn't sure he was ready for them. And just as quickly as they came, they were gone. She glanced up towards the bed, where Regina let out a soft moan.
"I better get going. Got four feet of snow to trudge though- the joys of living in Maine." Granny said, turning towards the door and closing it without a sound.
Regina blinked her eyes open a second or two later, glancing around the room with a confused look on her face. "Did someone just leave?" She asked, in the most sleep filled voice Robin had ever heard from her. He instantly found this version of Regina absolutely adorable.
"I thought you were under a sleeping curse or something," Robin said, blatantly ignoring her question as he stood up.
His fiancé gave him an ambiguous smile, rubbing her eyes with the back of her hand.
"Not... Exactly," she said, letting out a soft yawn that she tried to cover up.
Robin made his way over to her, stretching his arms across the bed so his hands gripped the metal barriers, his body hovering over hers- she was right where he wanted her.
"I haven't been able to tell you how proud I am of you," he said, before capturing her lips with his own.
After a brief moment, she pulled back and glanced up at him with sparkling brown eyes. "I still can't believe that all happened. I feel like I've been run over by a truck... Multiple times."
She then ran her fingers through his hair, biting her bottom lip between her teeth. "But we made a beautiful baby, and that's all that matters."Kissing him again, she noticed him break out into a smile.
"Granny suggested we invest in a minivan so we can drive all three kids more easily," Robin said, watching her chuckle.
"A minivan? Can you seriously picture me driving one of those ridiculous things? Storybrooke isn't even that big! I am a queen, mind you."
"But we have to think about our growing family," he counteracted, "I honestly don't know what a minivan is, but I know you'll look cute driving it around."
Regina rolled her eyes carelessly. "Whatever. So where is Caroline? I miss her."
Her emotional attachment to her child was already so strong. Regina found it unlike any other relationship she had; as soon as she saw her, she knew she loved every bit of her with everything she had.
"In the next room over," Robin told her, "she's been sleeping a lot, just like you have. Whale said she's probably getting hungry again. Apparently she's supposed to be fed every two hours."
Regina put on a smile. "All the more times for her and I to bond together."
Placing a quick kiss on her forehead, Robin straightened himself upright and glanced towards the open door. "I'll go see if I can bring her in. Afterwards, we can finally let the boys come and see you. They've been aching to all day."
"Well I've been aching to see them," she replied, soon realizing that she hadn't seen either of them since about seven in the morning.
"You just sit tight, I'll be right back M'Lady."
With that, Robin slipped through the door, heading towards the room where his little baby girl was being kept. They didn't even bother putting an identification tag on her; nobody needed anything to distinguish the daughter of the former evil queen and the famous Robin Hood. Besides, there hadn't been a baby born in the small town for quite some time.
"Oh, glad you're here Robin," Whale said when he noticed him, in the middle of filling out some papers by the baby's side. "I need you to put her name and today's date on this paper- it'll be her birth certificate."
He held it out towards him, along with a black gel pen.
Robin felt a heaviness to the paper as he took it, carefully looking it over before prepping the pen. He knew he had to be precise, due to the fact that it was an official document. Regina wouldn't be happy if he messed up.
So he gave attention to every single word he wrote, until her first, middle, and last name were written on the top line. Then he wrote down the date, March 12th, 2014.
"Great, now she legally exists in the world," Whale smiled, taking it from him and sticking it in a folder. "Is Regina up yet?"
Robin nodded. "She wanted to see Caroline again."
She had been placed in a bassinet full of blankets, making her look smaller, with her faint pink skin and deep brown eyes. Robin gently scooped her up with his hands, lifting her easily into the comfort of his arms. She seemed to fit snuggly in the crook of his elbow.
"When I picked her up, all she did was squirm. I guess she loves her daddy more than her doctor." Whale said rather sarcastically, turning to leave out the door. "I'll be in my office if either of you need anything. Other than that, you're free to spend the night here with Regina if you'd like. I'll probably head home in an hour or so, I don't need much sleep."
Robin hadn't realized it was so late. He wondered if Roland or Henry had fallen asleep yet.
"She's sure missed you," he said with a warm smile, when he brought Caroline back into the room Regina was put in.
She beamed when she saw her child again, her energy quickly coming back to her. Robin gently placed the infant in her arms, loving the sight of the two of them together.
Regina studied her for a moment, noticing all her little facial features she hadn't been able to see the first time in that dark little room in the back of Granny's diner.
"She's going to be such a strong girl," she said, glancing up at him with love in her eyes. "And sweet, and loving, and perfect."
Robin tucked a tray hair behind her ear. "Well I'd expect nothing less from our little princess," he replied soundly, glancing down to see his daughter tugging at the front of her mother's hospital gown.
"I'll go check up on the boys and see if they're still awake," he whispered, "it'll give you two a little time to yourselves."
Regina didn't want him to go, but she knew both boys had to be checked up on, especially since they were being looked after by Will.
Robin found them both running up and down the halls; quite the contrary than what he thought he would see. The hospital seemed somewhat dismal at the untimely hour they were there. The lights were florescent, but ever so often they would flicker due to the wind outside.
"Boys, why do we have so much energy? It's almost eleven at night!"
He caught his son as he attempted to scurry away from his open arms.
"What's going on here? Where's Will?"
Henry looked up at him with michevious eyes. "Nothing. Will fell asleep on the table over there, and Roland and I have been playing cat and mouse ever since."
Robin gave them both a surprised look. "I can't believe you have so much energy in you, especially you Roland. I feel just about dead right now."The boy giggled as he rested his head on his father's shoulder. "Can we see Mommy now?
He ruffled his hair. "Soon. Let's go see how Will's doing first."
Setting the boy down, Robin walked over to the empty table where his brother lay; his head was face down on the surface, and he was drooling. He couldn't help but chuckle when he saw his brother lying there, fast asleep. Flicking his head with his index finger, only taking a few seconds for the man to wake up.
"Hey... What was that for?"
"You can't be sleeping on the job," Robin told him, folding his arms across his chest crossly, "Roland and Henry have been running around with nobody looking after them. I don't have time to be worrying about them, I have Regina, and the baby-"
"I know, I know. But you can't blame me, it's late!"
His brother gave him a cold look. "Well, think you could help me get them calmed down a bit? Regina is feeding the baby right now, but she'll probably be done in a few minutes. I promised the both of them that they could see her before they go to bed. By the way... Think you could take them home with you?"
Will gave him an unimpressed look. "I'm not about to stay here all night. I guess I can take them off your hands. So you're staying here all night then, huh? In this creepy old hospital?"
Robin rolled his eyes. "Whale is making Regina stay at least two days, so it's only fair I stay here with her."
Will then stood up and stretched his back, glancing down the hallway as he heard Roland squeal loudly. "Guess you're on daddy mode full force now," he smirked, giving him a hearty slap on the back, "I could learn a thing or two from you. But I'm not the responsible dad, I'm the cool uncle."
"Whatever. Just get me through these last few minutes and I promise they'll both be passed out when you take them home."
With that, Robin grabbed his brother's arm, leading him down the hallway in pursuit of his two energetic boys. The hallways were filled with a strange nostalgia, silence covering every single crack and crevice. Robin was about to turn around and check another hallway when Roland popped out of nowhere, screaming a "boo!" at the top of his lungs before taking off down the rest of the hallway.
Will nearly jumped out of his skin, though he tried hiding his surprise from Robin as best as he could. His brother stifled a laugh before taking off after Roland, soon running full force down the isolated hall. Henry had joined the boy in his scheme, bolting through twists and turns, not showing any signs of slowing down.
Robin couldn't let his own kids outrun him, but he was near exhaustion by the time he finally caught up to Roland, grabbing his middle and stowing him under his arm like a football. Will had let his brother win that game.
"What do you think you're doing little man?" He asked, panting under his breath.
"Roland bet me he could beat you," Henry said simply, while giggling relentlessly.
His father gave him a long, hard look. "Henry Mills, this is a hospital, not a place to run like maniacs. You two would've given Mother Superior a heart attack if she saw you. Now- we've all had a really long day. You two can either shape up and see your sister, or go home with Will now."
Roland craned his neck to the side in order to see his Dad. "Sorry Papa... I'll be good."
"Yeah, we want to see her," Henry added, an apologetic look written all over his face.
Sighing, Robin put his son back down. "Alright then. Mom is waiting to see you two, so is Caroline."
So the four of them walked the long stretch back to Regina's room, hand in hand. Robin quickly checked on how she was doing before letting the boys in.
"Mommy!" Roland practically squealed, taking off towards her bed with open arms, throwing them around her.
Regina smiled brightly when she saw him again- it felt like forever.
"Gentle," she warned softly, feeling pain shoot up her body when he pressed up against her midsection.
Robin took Caroline from her, allowing the five year old to properly climb up onto the bed.
It was odd; Regina felt like an entirely different person than she had been just hours ago. She felt like a new woman, one that had a new course in her life, one that involved taking care of her daughter for a long, long time.
"Did it hurt at all?" Henry asked, breaking the peaceful silence.
Regina gave him a look, about to say something witty when she realized that he was twelve, and had absolutely no concept of pregnancy.
"Yeah, a little bit- but I'll be all better soon." She told him with a slight smile, stealing a sideways glance towards her baby, who seemed to he loving the attention.
"Hey, do you guys want me to take a picture?" Will proposed, holding up a silver digital camera he had brought with him.
"Sure," Regina said, "I almost forgot about that. What happened to you Will? You look like you've just been chased by a murderer."
He narrowed his eyes. "Not exactly. Do you want the picture or not?"
Roland responded for her, obviously with an enthusiastic yes, positioning himself on her lap. Henry and his father leaned in towards her, making the boy wish he could be young enough to sit on his mother's lap again. But Robin had something even more special in store for him.
"Would you like to hold her?" He asked, causing Henry to widen his eyes.
A sudden fear coursed through him- what if he held her wrong, too tight or not tight enough. What if he dropped her? She was so tiny and helpless; he didn't want to hurt her in any way.Robin must've sensed this fear, because he then turned his expression down to Caroline.
"You just have to support her head and hold her close to your body," he explained, gently passing her over into his arms.
Henry was nervous at first, but he did what his father had told him to do. The first thing he noticed was how warm she was. Her heartbeat was surprisingly strong against his own; she may have been small, but she had life. In that moment, Henry concluded that she was the best thing that could ever happen to their family. He remembered his mother's words from a couple months ago- marriage isn't what makes a family, it's the love.
"Okay, smile on three," Will ordered, counting down quickly and pressing down on the button, capturing the moment forever.