A New Normal (A New Dream Book 3)

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Chapter Twelve

Three days later, Keely and Angel are released from the hospital. Roger borrowed his parents car to drive his wife and daughter home. Everyone was at their apartment, ready to welcome them home and spend more time with the little Angel that has joined their family. In the car, Roger is sitting in traffic on his way to the hospital. He stares at the car seat in the back of the car and can’t believe that his newborn daughter will soon be strapped safely into it. Since meeting Keely a little over 2 years ago, his life has changed so drastically. He went from a heroin addicted loser whose band didn’t want anything to do with him to a husband and father with a record deal and sleepless nights ahead of him. He was ready for everything that his new life had waiting for him. He pulled into the parking lot of the hospital and parked the car before going upstairs where his family waited for him.

Stepping into the doorway of the room, he saw Keely cradling his daughter in her loving arms. Arms that have provided comfort to him on countless days and nights during his withdrawal and after his HIV diagnosis. She would hold him in her arms and tell him that everything was gonna be OK. And it was. She was smiling down at her daughter as she sat on the bed. He smiled as he watched them. He didn’t realize that Keely knew he was there. “Earth to Roger, come in Roger. Are you OK, Baby?” she asked looking up at him.

“Huh, um… yeah. I’m… I’m fine. Just… I can’t believe how beautiful my family is.” he stuttered as he entered the room.

“You’re welcome.” she giggled, leaning up to kiss him.

“You joke, but I do owe you everything, Keel. Without you, I get out of the hospital and go back to finish what I started. I keep using and I die in an alley. No life, no future. Nothing.” he looked down at her.

“Everything is happening because of you too. If I didn’t have to help you, I would have been a drunk. I would have been no use to you or anyone else. I had to get sober so I could help you.” she looked up at him.

“We saved each other for this little Angel. She’s the reason why we’re both here, clean and sober.” he smiled leaning down to kiss his daughter’s head.

“Are you ready to go?” she looked up at him.

“Yeah, Baby. I’m ready. Do we need to sign anything?” he asked going to the bed to retrieve Keely’s bag.

“Nope. We’re all set. We were just waiting for daddy to come bust us out of this place and take us home.” she smiled at him as the nurse came in with a wheelchair.

“Sorry, Mrs. Greyson. It’s hospital policy.” she smiled looking over at her.

“I just had a c section a few days ago, you won’t hear me complaining.” Keely laughed looking over at her as she gently sat in the chair, with her baby still in her arms.

“I’m gonna go get the car. I’ll meet you out front.” Roger smiled leaning down to kiss Keely and Angel before rushing out the door to get the car from the parking lot.

“He is something, huh?” Keely smiled up at the nurse.

“He’s very devoted to you. You’re a lucky woman, Mrs. Greyson.” the nurse smiled at her.

“Yeah, we’re very lucky to have him in our lives.” Keely smiled as she sat back and enjoyed the wheelchair ride downstairs, where Roger was waiting to take her home.

“You’re chariot awaits, my loves.” he stood outside the car as Keely and the nurse exited the hospital.

“Oh, yay. I get to see you drive. I’ve never seen you drive before.” Keely giggled seeing Roger outside the car,

“Don’t plan on me going any faster than 20 miles an hour, though. Not with this precious cargo.” he smiled, collecting his daughter into his arms and putting her into the car seat and securing her. The way his mother taught him to. Only he used a teddy bear to practice on.

“We live in New York City, Roger. How fast could you possibly be able to go? I mean, really. With all the traffic between here and home, it’ll be a miracle if you even make it to 20.” she laughed as the nurse helped her out of the chair and into the back seat of the car next to her daughter.

“I’m gonna be extra careful with my wife and daughter in the car.” he smiled kissing Keely before closing the door and getting into the drivers seat. “Ready, Baby?” he asked, starting the car.

“I don’t know. How crazy is it at our place?” she asked buckling her seat belt.

“Wendy, Jason and the moms are going crazy making sure the apartment is perfect for you and Angel. The guys are just sitting around. My dad was looking for a hockey game and your dad, Rick and Oliver are arguing over the Yankees and the Mets.” he laughed, putting the car in gear and starting toward home.

“Oh great. Well, I guess we’re lucky we didn’t have a boy. Otherwise, we’d lose him to sports before long.” she laughed admiring her sleeping daughter.

“Girls can like sports too, but I hope her mommy can teach her to be a prima ballerina.” he smiled, paying close attention to the road.

“Roger, um… I’ve been thinking.” she looked over the seat at him.

“About what, Baby?” he asked, curious.

“I wanna be on stage.” she smiled at him.

“I thought you were. At least until Angel starts going to school when you go back to teaching.” he looked at her through the rear view mirror.

“Actually, I… I don’t want to go back to teaching. I wanna hire another teacher and someone to take care of the day to day operations, so I can record and tour with you guys. And when Angel gets old enough to go to school, we can get her a tutor on the road if we have to. I… I think it’s really important for her to be out there with us. Knowing that nothing is impossible and no matter what, dreams matter.” she explained to him as he pulled up in front of the building, He parked the car and turned around towards her.

“Are you serious, Keel? I mean, I… I thought you made up your mind. You were gonna tour until Angel started school and then you were gonna stay here to raise her.” he was confused, but trying to understand what Keely was saying.

“I did. But the minute I looked at her… looked into her eyes, I… I wanted her to be proud of me, you know? Being a dance teacher is fun and all, but it isn’t gonna do that. Not as much as being up on that stage is.” she looked intently at him.

“If that’s what you want, Keel. I’ll support you no matter what. You know that.” he turned around to take her hand.

“Thank you, Roger. You… you always know what to say. I mean, you… you always have the perfect husband response no matter what.” she smiled at him.

“I love you, Keel. Do you think those were just words? I mean it every time I say it.” he smiled at her before leaning over the back of the seat to kiss her.

“We… we should get inside. Everyone is probably anxious to see the baby.” she smiled at him.

“Yes, dear.” he laughed before getting out of the car and taking the baby out of the car seat while Keely carefully got out of the car. They entered the building and Keely carefully made the ascent up the stairs. When they got to their apartment, they could hear the television blaring and the guys were cheering. Jason and the women were hollering at them to lower the television. “Ready?” he smiled at her.

“Yeah, let’s get inside to our crazy family.” she smiled as Roger unlocked the door. They stepped into the craziness and smiled.

“You’re home. Martin, turn the tv off.” Mrs. O’Reilly called out as she rushed to the door.

“It’s OK, daddy. You can leave it on. I’m just gonna put Angel down in her room and then I’ll be right out.” Keely told him as she and Roger brought Angel into her room.

“Maybe you should lay down too, Baby. You should sleep when she does.” Roger looked down at her as he took Angel out of her carrier and put her into the crib. The newborn began to stretch, but quickly fell back to sleep.

“Roger, I’ve been in bed for 3 days. I really need to move around and take care of my house. I’m sure Wendy and the moms meant well, but I need to put my house back together after all of the “cleaning up” they think they did.” she told him quietly as she stared down at her daughter.

“She is something, huh?” he wrapped his arms around her, holding her close.

“We made that.” Keely giggled, leaning in closer to him.

“You always said that our love can do great things.” he smiled kissing her head.

“It just did.” she smiled.

“Why don’t we let her sleep? I’ll take the baby monitor in case she wakes up.” Roger suggested looking down at her.

“You’re gonna be a hands on dad, aren’t you?” she asked smiling up at him.

“Better than being some guy walking around her life in a daze, huh?” he laughed, remembering what she used to say to him when she was pregnant and he was a nervous father to be.

“Much. You really snapped out of it.” she looked up at him.

“She’s my daughter, Keel. I look at her and I want to give her everything. A good life and more memories of her father than she knows what to do with.” he looked down at her.

“She is sure to do that, Roger. I promise. Our daughter is gonna have pleny of memories of both of us. She won’t forget us because we’re gonna be there in her life for a long time.” she held on to him tighter as Jason listened at the door.

“That kid is one lucky girl. Those two are gonna be the greatest parents a kid could have.” he looked over at Wendy.

“If they love her half as much as they love each other, that’s a safe bet.” Mrs. Greyson smiled at him.

“You do realize that if Keely catches you eavesdropping, she’s gonna kick your fruity little ass, don’t you?” Oliver laughed looking over at Jason.

“Yeah, she really hates that. We should go in the kitchen before she catches us.” Wendy agreed as she and Jason scattered.

“They’re gonna be OK, right?” Mrs. O’Reilly asked Mrs. Greyson.

“Yeah, Lynn. I have a feeling they’re gonna be great. They bring out the best in each other. With Keely by his side, how could Roger not be the perfect husband and father.” Mrs. Greyson smiled at her.

“Your son isn’t too bad either.”

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