Disclaimer: Since my name is not Joss Whedon, I don't own 'Angel' or any of the characters associated with the show. The challenge (details below) belongs to me and so does Courtney.
The Baby Boom Challenge.
Inspired by the movie of the same name. Lilah Morgan's life is going great until her cousin dies, leaving Lilah with an unwanted inheritance - her baby daughter. Now, Lilah must juggle her very demanding career at Wolfram and Hart with taking care of a mischievous baby.
- The story should take place during Season Three or Four of 'Angel'.
- The baby should be a girl, aged between ten and fifteen months, ie. old enough to crawl and make trouble, but small enough to have to be carried around and wear diapers.
- Lilah must bring the baby to work, preferably to a very important meeting.
- Lilah changes the baby's diaper - without actually knowing how.
- Lilah does NOT abandon the baby on the doorstep to the Hyperion, or sacrifice her to the Senior Partners. She's stuck with the baby. Whether she becomes Mother of the Year, or turns the kid into a mini-her or something between the two extremes is up to you.
- The baby calling Lilah 'mama' at some stage, and Lilah's reaction.
- The baby biting Gavin.
- Lilah hiring a nanny, preferably going through a string of them, either because she's not happy, or the baby is too much of a handful.
- The baby winning over a powerful, important demon client by being adorable.
- Lilah getting into a 'soccer mom' conversation with the mothers of other babies.
Author's Note:To Darklight – I liked your idea a few chapters ago of having Lilah set up her own law firm and I wanted to get her out of Los Angeles since, going by the canon timeline, after the end of this story she has less than a year to live and Courtney shouldn't be left all alone, but, since nobody leaves Wolfram and Hart (unless they have an evil hand) I had to come up with an alternative.
Three weeks later.Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday, dear Courtney.
Happy Birthday to you.
Despite her best efforts, Lilah couldn't keep a small smile from her face as the baby in her arms wriggled excitedly, clapping her pudgy hands at the Wolfram and Hart employees who, undoubtedly motivated by the prospect of free cake, had joined in the birthday celebrations.
Harmony, who had organized the party – and wisely refrained from telling Lilah about it until it had begun – to celebrate Courtney's successful completion of her first year of life, was in her element, as she always was at a party, regaling anyone who happened to pause near her for more than a few seconds with anecdotes about her tiny friend, whose fame, due in no small part to her charming of the famously finicky Lord Scheltar, was now legendary.
The blonde vampire, true to form, had presented the birthday girl with a neon pink stuffed unicorn.
Lilah had been relieved, and secretly more than a little proud, when Courtney had attempted to chew off the unicorn's horn before dropping it to the ground and making a grab for the glittery paper it had been wrapped in, deeming it a more entertaining plaything.
The baby girl had stared at them in astonishment, thinking that she had fallen into the hands of lunatics, as several of the adults tried to demonstrate how she should blow out her candles.
In the end, Lilah had been obliged to do the honours.
"Wow." Lilah wondered, and not for the first time, whether Gavin had taken formal classes in the art of being annoying when he was a child. "I never thought that I'd see the day when Lilah Morgan became a baby lover. What happened? Was your biological clock ticking?"
"I do not like babies." Catching sight of the rather hurt expression on Courtney's little face, Lilah softened her tone, just a little. "I just don't hate this baby."
"Me lub Mama Li'." Courtney declared fiercely, snuggling into Lilah's arms and giving Gavin a glare that, coning from somebody over a year old, would have been terrifying, as if daring him to challenge her.
Even Gavin Parke couldn't come up with an appropriate response to that.
Lilah sighed, regarding her now year old ward with as much affection as she thought herself capable of feeling.
She did not love Courtney.
She had loved her cousin Lynn when she was a child, but they had drifted apart and now Lynn was dead.
She had adored her father, worshipped him, believing him to be a demi-god, a hero, somebody who was always going to be there to love her and to protect her but he had left, never pausing to bid her goodbye.
She had loved her mother, and if she was honest with herself, she had to admit that she still did, but her mother was now trapped in a prison of her own mind and never recognized her when she visited.
Although she had tried not to, she couldn't keep herself from warming to little Courtney.
She didn't want to see something bad happen to the baby, so she knew that she couldn't allow herself to love her.
"Look, kid," Over the past month, Lilah had grown accustomed to conversing with a baby. "I don't know what you did to deserve this, but you're stuck with me for the next seventeen years. Your grandparents are dead, I don't know where your father is, or even who he is, and you don't have any aunts, uncles or other cousins to speak of. Your only other relative . . ." She trailed off, not wanting to discuss, or even think about her mother. "I'm afraid that I'm all you've got, and you and I both know that I'm not going to win any Mother of the Year awards. You and I are just going to have to learn to live with each other. Listen," Adopting a tone of voice she normally reserved for contractual negotiations, she shifted Courtney into a more comfortable position in her arms, regarding her seriously. "I'm going to make you a deal – I promise not to be a bitch about boyfriends and parties and curfews and all that teenage crap, if you promise to go easy on the tantrums, at least while you're with me. Agreed?"
Courtney burbled her assent.
Come on, babykins." Harmony cooed, coming up to claim Courtney from a slightly unwilling Lilah. "It's time to cut the cake, and we can't do that without our little guest of honour, now can we?"
She tickled Courtney's tummy, delighting in her giggles, and bore her over to her desk, where the cake and an assortment of other goodies were laid out.
It had take the best part of an hour for Harmony to dress Courtney for the party that was being held in her honour but, if the appreciative oohs and aahs of the small cluster of guests was any indication, it had been time well spent.
Courtney, in an adorably impractical lacy white dress with a pink ribboned sash at the waist and pink rosebuds at the hem, her soft chestnut curls secured with a white ribbon, looked deceptively angelic and like an infant princess as she accepted the homage of her adoring subjects, smiling graciously as they presented their tributes.
"An enchanting little thing." There was a faint note of sourness in Linwood's tone that spoke of his bitterness over the loss of his own children. "She really does look just like you."
Lilah didn't bother arguing. She knew that it was true. She and Lynn had been as alike as twins when they were small children and Courtney was the image of them both.
"The Senior Partners were very impressed with your handling of Lord Scheltar." Linwood said in would be casual tones.
"Lord Scheltar may be . . ." He paused, considering his choice of words and wisely decided against his first option. ". . . eccentric, but he is the hereditary head of one of the most powerful demon families in this dimension. They and their associates provide more than half of the business for one of the firm's branches. They have connections all over Europe and America."
The façade of polite interest Lilah had donned when her superior had started speaking was starting to slip.
". . .main branch in London and, as His Lordship refuses to work with anybody save yourself and little Miss Morgan, the Senior Partners feel that you would be suitable."
"For what?" She had tuned him out when he began to list Lord Scheltar's holdings.
"A promotion, Lilah. The CEO of the firm's London branch has died, surprisingly enough of natural causes, and, as you were able to manage Lord Scheltar, their foremost client, so well, the Senior Partners feel that you would be an ideal replacement." His smile was soured by envy. "Congratulations."
Lilah had been certain that she would have to kill at least a few colleagues to rise so high.
There was of course, no question about whether or not she would accept the position.
Only a complete idiot would turn down such a golden opportunity and besides, the Senior Partners did not look kindly on those who were foolish enough to reject their favour.
As CEO she could add at least one more zero to her annual salary and the bonuses and perks were, even by her lights, sinful.
It was rather ironic that she could thank her unwanted little ward for this good fortune.
She glanced at Courtney, who was cackling manically as she cheerfully pelted Gavin with fistfuls of creamy birthday cake, and couldn't keep herself from laughing.
London had no idea what was about to hit it.