A New Normal (A New Dream Book 3)

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Chapter Seven

Roger and the band are at the studio laying down the first of their tracks for their debut album. Keely and Wendy are walking around the city, shopping. Wendy wanted to buy her niece and goddaughter an outfit to wear home from the hospital. She also bought her a blanket for her ride home. Keely picked up a onesie that said Daddy’s Little Angel and had a shirt made for Roger that said Angel’s Daddy is a Rock Star. Wendy bought Oliver a shirt that said Rock Star Daddy to Be. The girls went out to lunch and laughed about their impending motherhood. Keely told Wendy about her cravings for hot dogs and macaroni and cheese. Food she never ate because it wasn’t healthy for her when she was a dancer. But now with her pregnancy hormones kicking in, she’s indulging in her cravings. Wendy hasn’t had cravings yet. She also hasn’t had any morning sickness either. They got back to Roger and Keely’s apartment, Roger is in the baby’s room rearranging the furniture. She dropped her bags on the couch before rushing over to the baby’s room. “Roger, what the hell are you doing?” Keely asked standing in the doorway.

“I’ve been doing some thinking and started feeling like her room wasn’t right. I wanted to fix it.” he looked over at her.

“Roger, stop. Her room is fine. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how I like it and now you’re messing it all up.” she started to yell at him, but calmed down. She knew Roger well enough to know that he had something on his mind. “What happened at the studio?”

“Nothing happened. I just got to thinking about how much better things would work if we put her crib by the window and the changing table next to the crib.” he stood in front of the partially moved crib.

“You can’t put her crib over there. That’s where the radiator is. She’s gonna be sweating like crazy come winter. Now, put everything back where it was and get out here.” she told him before turning around and going into the living room.

“Keel, give him a break. He’s nervous. You should see Oliver. He already bought baby proofing stuff to put around the apartment and the baby isn’t gonna be able to reach anything for two years.” Wendy looked over at her.

“I’m 6 months pregnant, Wend. He’s driving me crazy. He’s gonna have to get over this, because when Angel gets here, I’m not gonna have him walking around in a daze all the damn time.” she ranted pacing around the living room.

I’m sorry, Keel. I just got to thinking and I want everything to be perfect for her.” he came out of the nursery.

“Nothing is perfect, Roger. I thought with our life, you’d realize that.” she looked up at him.

“I… I know, Keel. it’s just…” he started when she interrupted him.

“You have to stop this. You’re driving me crazy.” she looked up at him.

“I know, Keel. I just can’t help it sometimes.” he wrapped his arms around her.

“You need to clear your head and get over it. We’re gonna have a daughter. She’s gonna be here soon and she’s gonna need her father. Not some guy fumbling his way through her life. I never realized how neurotic you could be.” she looked up at him.

“My head is clear, Keel. I swear.” he looked down at her.

“So, what is all this? God, every day it’s something else.” she looked up at him.

“I know, I’m sorry. I’m losing it, aren’t I?” he asked giving her a slight smile.

“That would imply you actually had it.” Keely laughed.

“Funny, Keel.” he laughed with her.

“So, how was it at the studio?” she asked.

“Great. We laid down tracks for Angel’s song. It was surreal. The producer loved it.” he smiled at her excitedly.

“So you thought you’d celebrate by rearranging her room and getting yelled at by your wife.” she smiled at him.

“Something like that. I’m just getting anxious and I feel like I should be doing something for her.” he looked down at her.

“We are doing something, Roger. We’re making a life for her. She’ll be here before we know it and then we’ll have a newborn. Diapers, crying, midnight feedings, teething. It’s gonna be great, but not as fun as you think it is. At least not at first.” she smiled up at him.

“Keel, I’m gonna enjoy every second of it.” he smiled.

“I bought you some things when we were out.” she smiled going towards the bags she set by the door.

“What did you get me?” he smiled sitting on the couch. She brought over the bags. She handed him one of the bags. He opened it and pulled out the t-shirt. “Angel’s Daddy is a Rock Star. I love it, Keel.” he laughed reading the shirt. He held it up to his chest.

“I had it specially made.” she smiled at him.

“And what is this?” he asked as she held a bag obviously holding a small box

“A little something we’re gonna need with a baby to raise.” she smiled, taking the box out of the bag. It was a Polaroid camera. Keely had many cameras and she still took pictures and developed them in the dark room she made out of the walk in closet in her room, but she knew that once the baby is born, she won’t have much time to develop pictures. A Polaroid camera would come in handy with a new baby. Roger would be able to use it too since her other cameras were a little more difficult.

“This is great, Keel. Thanks.” he wrapped his arms around her.

“And I picked these up.” Wendy smiled handing Keely the bags.

“Scrapbooks. We’re gonna need plenty of those. Thanks, Wend. This is great.” he smiled, holding the hand full of pink photo albums, big and small.

“Well, with parents as gorgeous as hers, the camera is gonna love her.” she smiled at him.

“You think I’m gorgeous?” Roger asked looking over at her.

“Technically, you were my man first.” Wendy joked.

“Wend.” Keely called out.

“Wait a minute. How come this is the first I’m hearing of this?” he asked setting his gifts on the couch beside him.

“When I first came to the city, I’d been hearing about you from everyone. The guys in Alienated were raving about you and then Wend tried taking me to see you and the Knights in the old bar you used to play in on 10th, but you guys weren’t there. We thought you guys broke up until we saw you and Dawn in the café where Wend used to work. Wend had a huge crush on you, but after the night you saw me perform on my birthday, she agreed that you and me belonged together.” she explained.

“When you put two hot rock starts together, sparks fly.” Wendy smiled at them.

“And apparently the spark is being used to cook a bun now.” Keely laughed caressing her belly.

“You really said that?” Roger asked Wendy in disbelief.

“Was I wrong? I mean, look at you two. Since the day you met, you’ve been wrapped up in each other. That night when you brought her home, I saw that you had feelings for each other.” Wendy smiled at them.

“We sang that duet that day.” Roger recalled looking over at Keely.

“I sang Little Liar and Alone too that day. You had just told me that you and Dawn got back together and I was really depressed.” she looked over at him.

“I knew that was for me.” Roger looked over at him.

“We were so confused back then. I had feelings for you and I didn’t know how to handle them. I… I never felt that way about anyone. I drank so much that day. You had to bring me home.” she looked over at him.

“It was my fault that you got that way. I couldn’t let you get home on your own.”

“It… um… it wasn’t your fault. I… I was sneaking vodka when you weren’t looking. I had it in a bottle in my bag.” she looked down into her lap.

“I was pretty messed up myself that day. When she came back, I didn’t know what I was gonna do. I had feelings for you, but I couldn’t turn my back on her either. She wasn’t handling things very well and she was using. I didn’t feel right just abandoning her. When I went home, we got into a fight because I was late coming home. I told her that I was helping a friend and I shot up with her to forget about my feelings for you. I felt like my life was over. I had so much guilt about being with her, but all I really wanted was to be with you. The smell of your hair, the way you looked at me haunted me. I wanted to be good enough for you, but I knew as long as I was shooting up with Dawn, I never would be.” he looked at her.

“We’re here now, Roger. None of that matters anymore. I’m sober and you’re clean. We’re having a baby girl and everything worked out for us. I’m still sorry about Dawn, but we can’t afford to live in the past. Our HIV showed us that life is too precious to dwell on things that happened in the past. All we can do is move forward. Our life is worth too much.” Keely took Roger’s hand in hers and saw that he was feeling regretful about Dawn’s death and everything that led up to her taking her own life.

“I know, you’re right. I’m a married man, I’m gonna be a father in a couple of months, we both have record deals and our life couldn’t be more perfect.” he looked down at her.

“And with a daddy like you, she is gonna be a lucky little girl. Just like I’m one lucky woman to have a husband like you.” she smiled wrapping her arms around him.

“I’m the lucky one, Keel. You stood by me through a lot. You got me through it all and you and Angel are my reward. I’m gonna take care of you girls. I swear. I’m never gonna let you and our daughter down.” he held her close, kissing her head.

“You could never let me and Angel down. Just be you, Roger. That’s all me and our little girl needs.” she looked up at him.

“See. Perfect. I’m a genius, really.” Wendy smiled at them.

“Yes, you are, Wend.” Roger smiled at her.

“How about you guys let me take you out for dinner. Oliver’s working late and I was just gonna eat some cereal for dinner since it’s just me and my little guy.” Wendy smiled at them.

“We’d really like that, Wend.” Roger smiled at her as he and the ladies left for the pizzeria where they all used to go when they were roommates.

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