Wake up Call, Infinity Ch.3
Summary: QUEEN AU WHERE ROGER (ROWAN)IS A19 YEAR OLD SINGLE DAD TRYING TO FIND A PLACE IN THE WORLD OF MUSIC
WARNINGS: iNTENSE FLUFF AND SOME SWEARING
Chapter 3: Row has to start stepping out of the bubble him and his daughter have been living in while in the safety of the hospital, and break the news to his best friends.
When Row had hung up on Len mid sentence, the boys had been confused. Then again, he was at his mom’s house and they had heard her infamous shout of <<ROWAN EUGENE QUEEN>> that always preceded an argument, so they let it go. But then he didn’t turn up to rehearsal, or called back for the rest of the afternoon. Or the following afternoon. Or for rest of the week. And that was unlike him. He always called back. (Well, most of his former one night stands would disagree with this). Let’s just say he always called his band mates back. Sometimes drunk, at 4 AM, Thus leaving a wakeful Terry with 2 hours to spare nothing to do but to start revising for whatever exam he had ahead.
So, when they didn’t know of him, they went directly to the village’s police station, to see if he was locked up, and if not, to report him missing.
“What if we ask Gina?” Rick suggested
“I’d rather check the morgue first, thanks” Len said.
“Well, what else can we do? Huh?”
“Audition new drummers”
“Seriously boys. Let’s go.”
They knocked on Row’s childhood home. Gina opened, with messy hair, a dressing gown and slippers
“Oh, hello boys. He ain’t here” she took a drag of the 4th cigarette she had smoked that day despite it only being 8:30 AM.
“Where is he?”
“He isn’t at home?”
“We’ve checked and there’s no track of him. We haven’t seen him in 7 days”
She sighed “in the hospital, I think. If he hasn’t left already”
“Hospital?” All three said simultaneously
“What happened?!” Len added
“You don’t know?”
She smiled, mockingly “Wow, father of the year isn’t so sure after all”
She laughed bitterly. If he hadn’t told his best friends yet, it maybe meant he was reconsidering the whole thing. Maybe common sense had hit him after the first stinky nappy.
“You know what? Come in.”
“Oh we were actually in a rush…”
“You wanna find him or not? Come in, I don’t bite
"Alright” all three musicians entered somewhat awkwardly in the house where so many sleep overs had taken place, back in the day.
She led them to the kitchen, where the phone was, and dialed.
Callie was the closest to the phone “Row? Yes, I’ll get him”
She made her way to the room where the Prune had been moved in the previous evening, due to her favourable evolution and the need of free incubators.
She grinned at the scene: the 6 day old infant was dozing against her dad’s bare chest, supported by his hands -which seemed huge in comparison to her small figure-. His eyes were closed, but Callie could tell he was awake as his left hand was stroking her head. It was adorable, and they seemed at such peace -poor Row had spent his first whole night on night watch and was exhausted-.
“Row” she called softly
He opened his big blue eyes in acknowledgement.
“You have a call”
“A call? From who?” He whispered back, before looking down at the baby to make sure she was asleep
“Didn’t say. But she was kind of irritated”
“Oh, that’s mom then” he smiled sarcastically, but didn’t move a bit.
“You aren’t gonna get on the phone?”
“I don’t know. She doesn’t deserve our attention does she?” He cooed
“How bad can it be?”
“You don’t wanna see my bad side. And I don’t ever want her to see it either”
Callie smiled “Go. I’ll stay with her”
He groaned in annoyance. He was so comfortable, and he didn’t want to get up.
“C'mere darling” he mumbled, detaching his daughter from his lap and carefully lying her on the cot
He exited the room and walked to the phone “What?”
“Row! Where are you?” The three voices of his best friends greeted him from the other side
“Oh, hi guys I… How did you get this number?”
“We’re calling you from your mum’s. She says you’re in hospital” Terry’s soft voice said worriedly
“You’ve gone fucking AWOL! Where are you man? We’re worried as hell” Len scolded
“Oh yeah, hehe been…"he scratched the back of his head "been pretty busy” He glanced in the direction of his daughter’s room, where he saw Callie readjusting the yellow teddy bear he had bought her the second day.
“Busy? With what?” Rick inquired
“It’s… It’s a long story.”
“Well we’ve got time”
“Shouldn’t you be in uni?” Row said in hopes they’d have to run into class
“It’s Sunday, Row!”
“Oh is it?” He had lost track of time, honestly
“C'mon! Spit it”
He sighed “Alright, huh…” He tried to think of where to start. He couldn’t really think much tho; his brain was pudge at that moment. “I met a girl in…” He counted nine months back from February “June?” No wait Piper was premature so it could be July or… Then it hit him. “No, remember that afternoon when we set up that Live Aid session in your parents backyard, Len?”
The boys nodded. July 13th. How could they forget? It had been dubbed the best Summer Party of 1985 in town. The four of them had tried to get tickets, but they couldn’t even afford a ticket to London in the first place. And so, They watched the whole show with four TV screens around the yard instead, and the whole village had joined them, arguing on which performance had been the best.
Of course, all four members of Symbols agreed that it had been Queen.
“But they signed up late” someone said
"Yea, they came late to the party" another agreed.
“So what? They rocked the party! You just say that because you like U2 better”
"Like you prefer Queen!“
"But we’ve got a point! Regardless of how much we like them, they were, objectively, the best performance” /
“Objectively? Bullshit!” Anne Williams snapped “They played the same shit they always play! And Bono was a true gentleman, helping that girl who was getting crashed by the crowd.”
"Yea, I’m sure Freddie wouldn’t have given a shit, so full of himself and his teeth up his~“ /
Dennis Phelps couldn’t finish his sentence as a someone tossed him a Converse, which hit his head. A young woman, with Bowie-like orange dyed haircut approached, with a bare left foot and the matching shoe on the other
"You know nothing about putting up a good show then. Also, you mess with Freddie Mercury again and next time the shoe will be stuck up your ass” she told Dennis, retrieving the item “I mean, it’s clear who I’m rooting for but Queen really did what had to be done. Geldof told them all to play the hits, because that’s precisely why they’re hits: they work. Other artists, like your boyfriend Bono and his band played new material, as if this was their concert. And it’s not. Even though they signed up on time and whatever. They took a risk, crowd didn’t know the song, they lost interest. But Queen had common sense: they played the hits, the anthems, and people connected with them. And it’s not about Freddie or him hypnotizing Wembley. It’s having some common sense. And not even you two knew the lyrics of U2s new song. So shut the hell up”
Row had liked her instantly. That’s a girl who knows the stuff.
They exchanged a smile, a wink and a complicit nod
“We must join our forces to help out our friends under pressure, don’t we?” She said
“Oh yes, Bowie girl.” Terry remembered
“So what’s with her?” Rick said
“Well, that.. she…” He cut himself off when a cry echoed in Pip’s room “Gotta go, guys. I’ll call you back”
“No! Row!” Len said, but the line went dead
“What happened?” Gina, who had watched the scene from the door frame, -and was about to finish her 6th cigar in a row,- asked
“He rambled about that Live Aid day, and a girl he met there”
“Did he say her name?”
“No. He had to go suddenly. It’s all weird”
“Yea, well… Life is weird, boys”
“I don’t understand. What’s going on? Can’t you tell us, Mrs. Queen?”
“Oh no. No. It’s not my story to tell. Nor my business. I tried my best, but that stubborn bastard didn’t listen. I’m sorry” she said
“But is he okay?” Len asked, concerned
Gina grinned, at how despite it all, the four boys would stick up with each other to the end of the world “Yes. He’s fine.”
“Row, are you okay?” Callie said, as the drummer wordlessly took the bundle from her
“Yes, yes. Why wouldn’t I be?” He said, sitting with the fussy baby
“You’re a bit pale”
“Oh I… Nothing. Just… I’m nervous honestly. Because we’re about get discharged and I’m gonna be alone with her and I’ll have to dad around all by myself and… And everyone will know…”
“And is that a problem?” Callie crossed her arms
“No, I mean… No, of course not. But everyone will ask questions and judge me and… I’m worried I will end up believing them more and fuck it all up”
“They’ll start telling me it’s a mistake, that I’m gonna screw everything up and that I won’t be able to be a good dad and I’m afraid it will become true”
“So you’re saying that how people think of you is gonna affect the way you… How you called it? Dad around?”
He nodded “Well, answer me these, will you? Have you, in this moment or at any point during these seven days, thought you are making a mistake?”
He looked at the tiny bundle and shook his head.
“Are you willing to always do your best for the shake of Piper?”
He nodded, noticing he was unconsciously rocking her back and forth.
“Then what’s the problem?”
“Look I haven’t exactly been a role model in… Well anything. One thing my mom’s proud of is that I’m not into drugs. Everyone who has a daughter in the block hates me. So how am I supposed to raise one?”
“Exactly how you’ve been doing the last six days”
“Yes but I have you guys. And the medics, and the equipment. But there I’ll be all alone”
“You will never be alone. You have the friends you’ve told me about. And your mum…Maybe the little darling is gassy”
“Oh stop about my mum” he carefully changed the Prune to an upright position and began to rub circles on her back without even hesitation. Wow he was actually getting a hold on the burping stuff.
“Yes. Your mum will eventually come to terms with the lil'raisin. I’m sure.” She said, whist handing him a muslin to place on the baby’s range of accuracy
“Oh you don’t know her”
“I know she’s a mum. Your mum and mother’s rarely ever turn their backs on their children for good”
Row looked at the baby, then raised an eyebrow at Callie
“I said it’s rare. There are obviously exceptions” she said “And believe me you’re better off. Also, she did call. That’s gotta Mean something”
“I didn’t speak with her. Just the band. They were at her place, yeah but… I don’t know. I’m not gonna beg on my fucking knees…” He was interrupted by a burp I his ear. Damn, that was a big one. He’d need 2 beers to produce such a loud one.
“Easy, tiger.” He laughed “Goddamn it, where did that come from, huh? You’re unbelievable” he praised, while getting the muslin out his shoulder and handing it to Callie
“And a neat one too. 10/10.” She chuckled
“Atta girl. That’s my lil'raisin. Yeah, good girl” he cooed, bringing her to face him, before she started fussing and he nested her again on his chest “Aw, don’t cry honey. Please. You’re alright. C'mon” he begged. She settled down quickly, and he sighed in relief.
“The point is, that here is like… I feel safe, you know? It’s like another world. Another life. And now I have to fit her in my every day, and be in charge and stuff, and… I’m not sure I’m ready”
“Parents are never ready to take them home. Not even those who had 9 months of preparation, and parenting classes, and a nicely decorated and supplied nursery. No one feels ready. But nerves are good. Nerves mean that you care. Worrying and doubting about your ability to be the dad your child needs is precisely what’s gonna make you raise your game. Just one last question: are you 100% that you love that lil one with all your heart?”
He looked at his daughter, who had gone back to sleep with the rambling of his voice, as his hand still caressed head and grinned “Hell yeah” Otherwise, how could he explain the way his chest seemed to be holding two hearts whenever she was in his arms? Or how, when he had to leave for the night it felt as though both those hearts were ripped away from him? Or how else could he have turned this goddamn sappy? Yep. That was the proof.
“Then that’s all the two of you will ever need. She won’t care if you two are rich or live in a cardboard box, or if she wasn’t in your initial plans, or that she doesn’t have a mom. As long as you love her and make her feel like it.”
He nodded, and rested his lips on her soft scalp.
“Right, I Gotta get to another patient. Call'em back.”
He stood up, this time taking his Prune along, and went to the corridor where the phone was. Making sure her head was safely cradled along with the rest of her small body on his left arm, he tucked the phone between the right shoulder and neck and dialed their shared place’s number
Rick picked up “Yes?”
“I’m a dad” he said simply, and waited for his reaction.
I’ll post the picture separately in order to preserve my goddamn sanity cause Tumblr is being a pain in the arse!!!!!
How do you guys do it? Am I the only one who needs 5 bloody tries to post this things?