It's later now/ Distance

Chapter 11

Amelia didn't get any real sleep, she basically laid on the uncomfortable on call bed staring at the ceiling blankly. The alarm set on her phone was useless, it only reminded her how she had to go on and face another day of angst. Every time she remembered it, it hit her all over again, was her happy healthy relationship with Owen now over? It sure seemed like it the previous night. Then again, how healthy and happy were they if he went behind her back to adopt her patient? It was an impossible situation, she understood what he did and she loves him for it, but she also hates him for it. She concluded to go and get coffee before it was time for rounds, and that would be enough to get her through.

As she was brewing the coffee, she heard someone come in the attending lounge. She didn't need to turn around to know it was Owen, she was too familiar with his heavy steps and she could feel his eyes on her, she hadn't anticipated her day to start this hard. Owen walked directly toward her and talked in a low voice, as if there was someone else in the room eavesdropping on them, "Amelia, you didn't come home last night." It was a curious concerned statement muffled by the tone of jealousy and distress.

She looked at him like she was staggered he actually dared to speak to her or ask her for any sort of clarification, "I'm sorry, are you actually talking to me?"

"Amy, we had a fight I get that, but you not coming home? I called Meredith, Arizona, Stephanie, I called the hospital, I even thought of calling Addison, where were you?" His immense heartache was being covered up by exasperation and a slight but evident hint of patronization.

"I'm sorry, a fight?" She narrowed her eyes at him growling, "You adopted a child, my patient, without even mentioning the idea to me!" Her emphasis was growing with each word, still unbelievable to her own self, " and don't you ever dare call me Amy again do you hear me! don't bother calling me at all for that matter," she had no regard to her loudening voice, she hadn't let herself dwell on how much she cared before this interaction. She grabbed her ready mug angrily and walked away slamming the door behind her.

On her way to start rounds and view the charts briefly, she saw Edwards at the counter and was horrified by the sight. "What the hell are you wearing?"

"Please don't be angry with me, you're amazing, neuro is amazing, I just need to let myself explore my whole potential before declaring my specialty," the 5th year resident rambled, hoping her mentor won't snap at her. Luckily, her attending had no energy to be mad at anyone more than she already is.

Amelia, already aggravated, breathed out heavily and retorted, "So you're leaving my for pink scrubs and babies, cool, seems like a trend these days."

Stephanie, confused about the last part of her superior's comment, tried to defend herself, "I was-"

She cut her off sharply, not needing to elaborate on the topic, "Edwards, it's fine." She smiled to reassure her student, "So who do I have on my service instead?"

"Deluca" she replied, content she wasn't screwed out of her chance in neuro

Amelia sighed, "the intern?"

"Yep, the hot one," she whispered jokingly, and Amelia's raised eyebrows were enough to tell that she was not amused

"Fine I'll take the baby duckling, just remember to not get attached to the vagina land, pink just doesn't suit you," Amelia jested and walked away with the tablet, leaving Stephanie to question herself and her new self discovering plan

She wasn't planning on going easy on the intern but she tried to be as kind as she could handle, "C'mon Deluca we have a long interesting day," she said sarcastically as she motioned for him to follow her in the hall, "What's first?"

The intern ran after her and started talking confidently in hope to charm her, "Dania Rafi, 4 year old female, you removed her massive ATRT tumor successfully with absolutely no post op complications, she finished her chemotherapy sessions 3 days ago, these are the repeat scans, it seems clear and ready to be discharged, and an adoption agency is coming in to take her today they just need you to sign her off," he fully informed with a smile

Amelia flinched at the mention of the adoption agency, it was happening too fast, did this mean Owen was already going to take her home? Or was he backing out? She secretly hoped he wouldn't back out on adopting this little girl, especially not because of her. "I can handle this on my own, you can handle any other post op patients I have," she was surprised when she looked up and found him still beside her, "do you have a problem?" she asked threateningly

"Oh, um no, it's just that, you only have one other stable patient, and I was hoping I could stay and help with all your cases and learn from you," he grinned at her charmingly, which almost fooled her, but just wasn't enough.

"I don't need an intern on this one and I certainly don't need a kiss ass," this cute intern was starting to push her buttons, "Go to the ER, find something, I don't care, just get out of my face," she waved her hand at him dismissingly which sent him running away. Sometimes it isn't so bad to be the crazy neurosurgeon with the dead brother, she thought to herself, it can be helpful.

She pulled herself together as she neared Dani's room, that little girl had an odd charm on Amelia, like her smile would make the world brighter in an instant. "Hey Dani!" Amelia beamed.

"Hey Amelia Badelia," Dania muttered the name Amelia had allowed, it usually made her giggle every time, though now, she seemed to be on the verge of crying.

" I have good news, you're no longer sick anymore, I can send you home, what's wrong?" Amelia tried to cheer her up

"But I don't wanna go home," she whined, her eyes filling with unshed tears

"Heyyy" Amelia said more softly as she sat on the kid's bed, "why not, you'll be done with the icky hospital food and go back to play," she forced a smile and hoped she believed it

"Papa is gone isn't he, he's not coming back? I don't wanna go home alone, I don't know how to pour my cereal, Papa always made my cereal," Dani's lips quivered and she failed to swallow and stifle the sobs

Amelia pulled Dania in for a hug, she knew too well what it felt to lose a parent at such a young age, but she couldn't imagine what it would have been like if she and her 4 siblings were left with no family at all. She was slightly surprised no one has talked to her about her grandpa's death yet, she assumed Owen had done so. She held her tightly and stroked her hair soothingly until her breathes became more steady. Her grip loosened as she felt Dania pull away slowly. The little girl looked at Amelia with wide hazel eyes and begged with heartbreaking puppy eyes, "Can I pweeze stay here with you and Doctor O?"

Amelia felt a sudden wave of emotion burning her heart, and she let what her mind has been avoiding to make its way to her conscious thought; she wanted to say yes, she wanted Dania to stay with them, the image that Owen had drawn for her last night of them being a family crept to her imagination and her tear buds seemed to be overworking. She held the tears in and opened her mouth to say something, a logical explanation that would not make her the bad guy for Dania, a little scared she'd say yes accidently instead. However, before she could voice anything, the lady from the adoption agency interrupted with Owen following behind her. Amelia roughly wiped her face and took in a deep but shaky breath, hoping that it wasn't drawing attention.

Owen quickly broke the silence to avoid the obvious awkwardness of the situation, "This is Dr Shepherd, the leading doctor on Dania's case. Dr Shepherd this is Mary Harrison, she's here to find Dania a foster family," Owen paused awkwardly as he watched the two women shake hands pleasantly and Amelia's gaze shifted to him worriedly when hearing about finding a foster family.

Amelia placed her sweaty palms in her coat pocket and tried to not look at Owen too much and act as professional as she could, "Oh, I thought Dr Hunt was adopting her, I may have misheard the news." She kept the very obviously fake smile as she subtly asked like it was something everyone has heard

"Oh yes, but it's going to take some time to go through the paper work and the interviews so Dania is going to need a nice cozy place to stay for the mean time," Mary responded, all with a wide grin and a chirpy voice, "so is she ready to go?"

Amelia shot Owen a quick secretive glance before returning to Mary and holding up the scans again. She acted like she was completely immersed in analyzing the clean scan and tried to look concerned. She distracted Mary by rambling out random medical jargon with complicated words and spoke fast, Owen was barely able to suppress his giggles when he realized exactly what Amelia was doing. She was sophisticatedly and over informatively saying that Dania was healthy and there was a slight chance she might have picked up a common flu. Mary however had no idea what was happening, scared and confused by the big words Amelia was using, she furrowed her eyebrows and asked what that meant. Keeping a very straight face on Amelia translated her words to Mary in a simple order, "Oh it's probably nothing serious, but it's best to keep Dania here a little more, better safe than sorry." She was trying effectively to stay sounding serious and ignore Owen's face from behind.

Mary nodded with the reassurance and approached Dani gently to talk to her. Amelia excused herself out of the room and Owen mouthed her a silent 'thank you' at the door, she rolled her eyes and unintentionally brushed her shoulder with his, being reminded by his tensing muscles visible even under scrubs was the last thing she needed for now. She walked out into the hall way and paced rapidly in no certain direction. Catching herself smiling, she felt stupid, her actions made no sense to her. Her mind was completely elsewhere that she didn't notice Arizona in front of her and bumped right into her colleague.

"Oh god, I'm sorry, are you okay?" Amelia rubbed her temple and scowled

"Yeah, yeah I'm fine, are you?"

Amelia nodded and the two froze and glared at each other for a moment before falling into chuckles and giggles together. They continued walking by each other and Arizona wanted to start small talk and unfortunately picked the worst topic, "I saw Owen talking with someone from an adoption agency, are you two getting a baby?" she whispered excitedly

Amelia rubbed her temple and half smirked as she replied flatly, "Owen is."

Arizona turned to Amelia to try and understand more from her expression, "Wha- what?" she hushed herself down, "Why? I mean.. what?"

"He adopted my patient without telling me, I could swear there was nothing on the refrigerator, can you imagine? She quipped

"Wow, doesn't seem like Owen.." Arizona scowled

"Yeah except the baby is a 4 year old girl who needed brain surgery and then her only left family member died," Amelia further clarified with guilt, "I'm not wrong for being mad at him for not letting me in on this, right?"

"No you're not," Arizona sympathized with her friend

"Then why do I feel so guilty?" she disclosed, whining

"Because you love him, and her. I know how you feel."

Amelia looked at Arizona softly and remembered Mark, they might not mention him on a daily basis but they all always remembered him. Sofia would smile or say something witty and they all knew where it came from. Amelia tried to redirect the attention from herself, "Have you talked to Callie yet?"

"We are moving back together actually"

"Go calzona! Are you getting remarried? I make an awesome maid of honor," Amelia raved

Arizona chuckled and shook her head, "it's way less exciting than that. I'm moving back in for parenting and economical reason, I couldn't live with Meredith forever and it's better for Sofia when both parents are in the same house, we did it before we got divorced, it's still the same" she reported sadly

Amelia's pager interrupted their conversation, "You're still-ex-wife is paging me to the OR, we'll catch up, okay?" Arizona nodded with a sad smile and watched Amelia run off.

….

Owen had arranged for it to be a light day, knowing he'll have to spend a lot of time with the social worker following him and analyzing him. Kepner was left in charge of the ER but Owen pretended to get a page so he could get a break from chirping Mary bombarding him with shrink questions. He dared not go to the ER and get distracted by the chaos it's always in. He opted to go check in with his friend in the ortho department. He found Callie in an X-Ray room, grinning peacefully at the lights falling on her face. She noticed her friend walking in and turned her head to smile at him and turn back to admire the injury she was going to fix.

"What are you so happy about?" Owen bantered, a little jealous

"This joint is completely shattered and the Humerus is sticking out of her skin, completely out of proportion," Callie shared with amusement

"Don't sound so gleeful," he chortled

Callie chuckled, "well what are you sulking about? Hey you can scrub in and tell me about it, I'm going to insert a fully functioning purely titanium joint and give this women full function back, that should cheer you up."

Owen agreed and went to manage his schedule and let Mary know before he came back to meet Callie in surgery.

"So what's bothering you, Hunt? It has to do with that women following you around all day today doesn't it?"

Owen sighed, unsure where to start, finally deciding to share the root of his sorrow, "I think Amelia broke up with me."

"What?!" Callie reacted a little too loudly, she went back to her work and continued the conversation, quieter, "Please tell me you did not cheat on her, is that who the women you're with today is?"

"What? No, of course not, I didn't cheat on her, I wouldn't," the notion made Owen sick to his stomach

"Okay, good, then what's the deal?" she was still clueless

"I adopted one of our patients.. without telling her," he said, toneless.

Callie looked up at him and froze, this time her reaction wasn't expressed by words, she just eyed him for a long time glowering at him before returning her focus to the severed arm. "Why the hell would you do that?"

"I screwed up, but this kid, she lost everyone, and she's just.. she's my daughter, I know it, I don't know how to explain it, and Amelia, she's furious, but today she.. she helped me keep her a little longer, and what does that mean?" perplexed was an understatement for what Owen was going through

"It seems to me like your problem isn't the adoption, it's the communication," Callie pondered loudly.

"Hey, you paged?" Amelia walked in the OR, holding an untied mask over her face

"You paged her?" Owen scolded his friend in a muttered whisper

"Yeah, I wanted a consult on the nerve function, scrub in and join us Shepherd," Callie replied to Amelia, ignoring Owen.

3 doctors were not really needed regardless of how bloody the situation actually was. Owen stepped back and stood beside Amelia as she assisted, watching the delicate procedure closely. He cleared his throat and attempted to clear the air, ending up only adding to the uneasy silence, "How has your day been, Dr Shepherd?"

"Oh, splendid," she answered immediately scornfully.

The edginess of the atmosphere grew, Amelia continued to work pretending that she was very concentrated, even though her role in this surgery was minimal, who was she kidding, she could do it in her sleep, she was just cautiously avoiding any possible conversation, certain that Owen would have told Callie by now.

Owen was not satisfied, he scooted closer to Amelia and spoke in a tone audible only to her and barely to Callie, "This isn't right, you should keep the house, I'll find something."

Amelia had no regard for Owen's hushed manner and replied with annoyance, "Oh really? And when Mary asks you where you'll keep Dani you'll show her an on call room? Give me a break, if you ruined us for this, then you better make it freaking work with this kid." She sneakily glanced around the stillness that surrounded her and felt the glares on her, she hated people staring at her. She checked her work one last time before tagging herself out, "Nerves seem intact and in place, my work here is done."

The rest of the day was uneventful but tiring for both of them. Amelia considered her options as she walked toward her car, half asleep. She had no idea where to go, she knew she'd like to go to a bar, but she had something to lose still, so she went to a meeting instead. After an inspiring session, she decided to call her realtor to start actually looking for her own place, and pick up an extra night shift for now.


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