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Author's Chapter Notes:

The 3rd installment in the A Moment Like This world.

I own nothing, no copyright infringement intended.

CHAPTER ONE


Lincoln took the stairs two at a time and soon found himself on the second floor landing. Walking now, he made his way down the hall to the bedroom and when he got there, he stopped for a moment, reaching out for the door handle, he smiled.

It had been two weeks since they had brought Lorelei home from the hospital, while it had been amazing, it had also been stressful, he had forgotten how much it was to deal with, having a baby around, not even when Liam was there, because he wasn’t the one who was getting up at night to change or feed the baby.

Now though, it was broken sleep, a few hours every now and then, basically whenever they could, which wasn’t often. When Lorelei cried, even when Stuart would get up to her, Lincoln would still lie there for hours, trying to sleep, but also not wanting to, just in case she woke up again.

The first week was chaos, he was sure that he didn’t sleep at all, he wasn’t sure that any of them did, but by the second week, things had gotten a little better, and Sara had assured them that it would get easier as the weeks passed.

Now he was hoping for the weeks to pass a little quicker. Easier would be nice right about now.

He turned his attention back to the door, and who was behind it. Pushing it open, he glanced into the room, the smile still there and he shook his head.

Closing the door again, he moved quietly across to the bed, sitting down, careful not to wake them.

Stuart was asleep, and Lorelei was lying on her blanket next to him, she was awake and just staring into space. He reached across the bed and took her tiny hand in his.

Every time he looked at her, he still couldn’t believe that he was a father again. Sometimes it felt like she wasn’t his, that he was just looking after her, the rest of the time, given past experience, what he had been through, he was determined to make sure that he kept his daughter safe.

“Linc.” Stuart rolled onto his back and brought his hand to his face, wiping at his eyes. “What time is it?”

“Just after 4pm.” he replied.

“Well I guess that was 2 hours.” He answered. “More than this morning.”

Lincoln shrugged his shoulders. “Yeah, I guess so.” He shifted on the bed. “Stu, if you want to sleep in the other room tonight…”

Stuart sat up and shook his head. “No, its ok, I don’t mind.”

“Yeah, you sure about that, cos Michael just told me that Sara’s started having contractions, so there’s gonna be another baby, possibly tomorrow, you should sleep when you can.”

“And what about you?” Stuart asked. “When are you going to sleep.”

“Well, apparently I’m Superman, so who knows.”

Stuart rolled his eyes at him. “Great, so now we have god and superman under one roof, not really sure how that works, are they on the same side.”

“Are you serious?” Lincoln replied. He leant over and picked Lorelei up and then moved around the bed towards her bassinette.

“Yeah well maybe its the sleep deprivation.” He told him. “Does crazy things to ones mind.”

“Sorry, but you don’t need any help there, was already crazy.” He placed her into the crib and then stepped back, still looking down at her though.

“Linc.”

“Yeah?”

“When did you say the next meeting with the layer was?” He climbed of the bed and walked over to the crib.

“Two days, and its just the last minute stuff.”

“I didn’t think that it would be that complicated, she put you down as the father on the birth certificate, what else is there?” He wanted to know.

“Lisa just wants to make sure that its all good and legal, so that if one day the real father finds out and comes looking for her….”

“Ok, so say that happens, and he gets a DNA test, then what happens.”

“Won’t really matter, because that’s what these papers are for, making me the legal guardian of Lorelei, its part of Lisa’s will.” Lincoln explained.

“Sure, but these things aren’t easy.” Stuart pointed out.

“Why are you worrying about it? I doubt that whoever the guy is, is going to find out about her, and I doubt that he’s going to come after her. Its just a thing. Besides, we’re her parents.”

“Well you are, in the legal sense anyway.”

Lincoln looked up at him, studying him for a moment.

“Don’t look at me like that, you know what I mean.” He took a step closer to the crib. “So, there’s really going to be another baby, possibly tomorrow?”

Lincoln looked up at him and laughed. “Yeah, that idea to sleep in the guest room, not looking so bad now right.”

“Not bad, really good actually.” he walked across the room, opening the door, “Just gonna go downstairs and grab her bottle.”

He made his way down to the living room and saw Sara sitting on the sofa, Michael was kneeling on the floor in front of her, her hands were resting on his shoulders.

“Oh god, I don’t want to see that.”

Michael glanced over his shoulder. “Thank you, that helps greatly.”

“So, is everything good here?”

Sara sat up a little straighter and glared at him. “Sure, everything is just damn fantastic.”

“It could be worse.” Michael offered.

She tilted her head to look at him. “I hate you, you know that right.”

Michael nodded back at her. “Yes, I’m aware of that.”

Sara leant back against the sofa and Michael stood up facing Stuart. “Is Lore asleep?”

“Not right now, she was, of course it didn’t last long.” He told him. “Would it be wrong if we kept her awake until tonight, so that she sleeps longer?”

Sara narrowed her eyes at him. “Don’t do that, are you insane?”

“Hey, I wasn’t going to, it was just a question.” Stuart said. “Gees, what do you think I am?”

“You really want me to answer that?” She retorted.

“Wow, this right here.” he replied waving his hands at her. “Doesn’t agree with you.”

“Screw you Stuart.” She shot back.

“Ok, there will be enough time for this later.” Michael walked around the opposite sofa, and leant back against it. “Don’t make her angrier that she already is, she’s scaring me right now.”

Stuart started chuckling and slapped him across the arm. “Well give it a day or so and you’re gonna know exactly what it feels like.”

“I take it back.” Michael said looking up at him.

“Yeah, it’s a little too late for that.” Stuart laughed.

“What the hell are you two morons doing?”

They turned towards the door and saw Gretchen standing there. She moved quickly towards the sofa where Sara was sitting, in obvious pain and Michael seeing her like that, panicked and rushed to her side.

“I’m sorry.”

“Just remember the hating you part.” She managed to hiss out. She looked up at Gretchen. “I think I need to go to the hospital.”

Gretchen nodded and helped Sara to stand up.

“I’ll uh, there’s a bag, I’ll get the bag.” Michael said. He moved towards the closet under the stairs and produced a pre-packed bag, and handed it to Stuart, while he helped Gretchen get Sara to the car.

“You want us to come with you?” Stuart asked him.

“No its ok, I’ll call later when she’s closer, there’s no point in you guys being up there with Lore.”

“Yeah right of course, makes sense.”

When Sara was in the car, Michael moved around to the driver’s side, climbing in, Gretchen and Stuart stood there and watched until the disappeared out of sight.

“So, that was horrendous, and if I looked anything like that when I had Serena, I’m horribly embarrassed.” Gretchen said.

“Yes, that’s what you should be embarrassed about.” he replied. “You know, of all things.”

She turned to look at him and narrowed her eyes. “Well at least I didn’t cry.”

“What are you talking about, I didn’t cry.” he shot back. “That wasn’t crying.”

“Oh sure.” She mocked him. “You were bawling like a, well a baby, you made more noise than Lorelei.”

“I did not.”

“That first time she opened her eyes and looked at you, and you sobbed like a little girl.” She grinned at him. “It was, weird.”

“I had something in my eye.” he defended himself.

“Yeah, that’s what it was.”

They turned around and headed back into the house.

“So, you think they’ll call the baby Stuart.” He wondered.

She looked up at him, and raised an eyebrow. “Oh yeah, that will be happening.”

“Uh, so clearly I missed something.” Lincoln said, walking down the stairs.

“All the gross parts, aren’t you lucky.” Stuart replied.

“They’ve gone to the hospital?” he asked and Stuart nodded.

“Yeah, Mikey said he’ll call as soon as something actually happens.”

“Well it looks like we might need to go over there a little sooner. The hospital just called, they said that we needed to get down there now.”

“Is Lisa alright?” Gretchen wanted to know.

Lincoln drew in a deep breath. “Guess that’s the question, we should get going.”