It’s nearly 5 months later and Keely has been cleared to sing. Her incision is still healing, but the doctor told her that singing would be good for her. She’s in the studio with Nate while Roger and Oliver sit in the control room. Nate is playing piano and Keely is at the microphone singing. Angel is sleeping in her carriage in the corner of the control room as Roger pays close attention to Keely. He’s playing with the knobs to bring Keely’s voice out more than the piano. Oliver is sitting back and letting him fuss with everything. He knows how nervous Roger is and wants to give him his space. Roger seems to be having a hard time feeling the groove. “Wait a minute. Keel, what… what sounds different?” he asked holding the button down.
“Nothing sounds different. What are you talking about?” she asked looking over at him.
“I… I don’t know, you don’t sound right.” he told her looking confused.
“Rog, she sounds fine. What’s with you?” Nate asked looking over the piano at him.
“I’m telling you, she doesn’t sound fine.” he said before getting up from his chair and entering the booth.
“What’s the matter?” Keely asked taking her headphones off and walking towards Roger.
“I don’t know. You just… you sound different. Not the way you used to. It’s weird.” he looked over at her.
“She just had a baby, Rog. Of course she doesn’t sound exactly the way she used to, but she still sounds great.” Oliver told him from the doorway.
“Are you feeling OK, Keel? Is your incision bothering you or something?” he asked looking down at her.
“No, I’m fine. Roger, what’s wrong with you?” she asked looking up at him.
“I don’t know. Let’s just take it from the top, but Keel, really let me have it. Gimme everything you got. Show me the badass rock chick I married.” he held her face before kissing her head and going back into the control room.
“Keel, blow his face off.” Nate smiled over at her as she put her headphones back on and stepped back up to the microphone. She started the song again and this time she blew him away. The more she sang, the more she felt like her old self. She let loose more. When the song ended, Roger stood up, hooting and hollering as he clapped as loud as he could, waking his daughter up. Keely saw him turn to go to the carriage and she rushed into the control room to help him.
“You woke her up? Really?” she laughed taking the baby from him.
“What? Her mother is kick ass. Maybe more so than before she was born.” he laughed as she bounced the baby on her shoulder.“I guess I was afraid to really let loose before. You know, since it was my first time since she was born. It felt good.” she smiled up at him.
“OK, go back in there and take it from the top.” he told her taking the baby from her.
“What about the baby?” she asked looking up at him.
“I got her. Just go in there and be a rock goddess.” he smiled as she went back into the studio.
“Yes, Baby.” she smiled going back to Nate and setting herself back up at the microphone.
“You’re really gonna sit here with her on your lap?” Oliver asked looking over at him.
“Yes. I want her to see her mother rock out and kick ass.” he smiled as Keely continued to sing. “Isn’t mommy amazing?” he smiled down at his daughter as she listened to her mother intently. She obviously has a love for music.
“Looks like you’re gonna have your hands full with this little one.” Oliver smiled at his niece, who was paying close attention to her mother.
“I hope so. I hope she takes after her mother.” Roger smiled, also paying close attention to his wife.
“What do you think she’s gonna be? A dancer, a singer, a photographer?” Oliver asked looking over at him as he held his daughter tight.
“Whatever she does, she’s gonna be a superhero. Just like her mommy.” he smiled admiring Keely as she concentrated on the song.
“With you and Keel as her parents, there’s no doubt.” Oliver smiled sitting back in the chair.
“What’s that supposed to mean? I’m a mere mortal in this world. Keel is the real superhero.” Roger laughed looking over at him.
“Before you, Keel wasn’t Keel. She was a young girl who had no idea what her life was gonna be. She had her dancing, but when she lost that, she lost herself. You made her the new and very much improved Keely. A wife, a mother, a rock star and the strongest woman we know. You’re as responsible for all of this as she is.” Oliver smiled at him.
“She got me clean and healthy. It’s because of her that I can be a husband and a father to this little one.” he smiled at him.
“I’m glad that my cousin is as loved and respected as she is, but you give her too much credit. You created the Keel that was able to be there for you when you were laid up and hold your spot so you can go back and make this happen. You two bring out the best in each other. You’re as much a superhero as she is. I just hope I can be the husband and father you are.” he looked at him.
“I wasn’t just laid up, Oli. I was sick from heroin withdrawal and she was the only one who could get me to realize that I could overcome the pain and that the cravings would pass. The only one to make me see that it was all gonna be worth it in the end.” he looked over at him.
“And you got her sober, so you did it for each other.” Oliver told him as the song ended and he sat up to hit the stop button on the panel.
“Apparently we did it for this little one.” he smiled as Keely took her headphones off and went back into the control room.
“So, how did we do?” she asked leaning down to pick up her 6 month old daughter.
“Perfect, Baby. Just perfect.” he smiled getting up to kiss his wife.
“I’m sorry about the first take. I… I guess I was a little gun shy at first. You know, with my incision and stuff. I… I was just afraid of doing too much.” she looked up at him.
“Keel, the doctor said you’re OK and you’ll get stronger the more you do. I know you’re a little scared, but it’s normal. There’s nothing to apologize for. That was amazing. I knew that song would be perfect for you. Didn’t I tell you, Oli?” he asked smiling at his co producer.
“Yeah, Rog. You told me.” Oliver smiled at them. He walked over to Keely and kissed her on the head. “Gimme my niece. I need the practice.” he smiled taking Angel from her.
“Sure. But I think she needs to be changed.” she giggled leaning into Roger’s arms.
“Ew, seriously?” he asked scrunching his nose.
“You said you need the practice.” Keely smiled at him. “Her stuff is in her bag under the carriage.”
“But Keel, I… I never changed a diaper before.” he looked at her.
“It’s easy. Roger does it all the time.” she smiled at him.
“You do?” he asked surprised.
“Yeah, come on. I’ll show you. It’s no big deal.” Roger looked at him, taking the baby from him.
“You are a lucky girl, Keel. You do know that, right?” Nate asked putting his arm around her shoulder.
“Yeah, I’m the luckiest girl in the world. That man loves me and he made me a wife and mother.” she smiled watching Roger change Angel’s diaper and Oliver stood over him.
“You were really great in there too. I’m honored to be a part of it.” he smiled down at her.
“You helped me just as much as he did. If you hadn’t asked me to step in for him until he got himself right, I probably would have still been drinking. I had to be sober for him and for you guys.” she smiled up at him.
“If it wasn’t for you stepping in, I would have found another singer and left him behind.”
“We’re all pretty lucky to have found each other.” she smiled at him.
“You’re a great mom, Keel. Not only to Angel, but to us degenerates too.” he laughed going back into the studio. Keely sat down on the chair that Roger had vacated. She leaned forward and looked at the control panel. She was about to press a button when Roger stopped her.
“What do you think you’re doing, blondie?” he asked pulling the chair back.
“I wanna hear what I did.” she looked up at him.
“I’ll do it. You don’t know what you’re doing.” he looked down at her.
“How hard could it be?” she asked looking at him.
“Harder than you think. That’s why you’re the talent and I’m the producer.” he laughed pressing the button.
“The talent, huh?” she laughed looking up at him.
“Just listen.” he leaned down to pick her up from the chair and sat down before bringing her onto his lap.
“That’s me?” she asked looking over at him.
“Yep. What do you think?” he asked looking into her eyes
“I love it.” she smiled at him as they enjoyed the song. Oliver still held his niece in his arms and Nate was listening from the studio.
“Your parents are the coolest ever.” Oliver smiled, kissing his niece on the head.