A/N: This fic is a sequel to 'Til the Sky Turned Blue. I know what some of you are thinking, "NO! We thought we were well shut of it!" and for that, I am sorry. I honestly had no choice. Every time my muse showed up she would tap me on the shoulder and ask, "So, how are Martin and Sam handling marriage and parenthood? What are their kids like? How about Danny and Emma? Does Emma's father still have issues with Danny? What about Viv? Does she like teaching at a university? How's her heart? Is Jack still dating Elaine? How's that going?" Believe me, I honestly did not think I would be back to my first fic but the questions were posed and now I must answer them. If it helps, I am going to do my very best to keep it to two books; three, tops.
TITLE: Red Sky (working title)
KEYWORDS: MS, D/OC, J/OC, VM, and friendship all around.
SPOILERS/TIMELINE: This is a sequel to my previous fic, 'Til the Sky Turned Blue
ARCHIVE: It will be posting simultaneously at and DISCLAIMER: Hank and Co. own everything Without a Trace. No copyright infringement is intended. Heaven knows if I had any control of the show I wouldn't have to write at all.
SUMMARY: Red sky at night, sailors delight. Red sky at morning, sailors take warning.
"Happy endings are just stories that haven't finished yet." - Jane Smith, 'Mr. and Mrs. Smith'
"I'll give you a thousand dollars if you get up," Martin mumbled into his pillow.
"We're married. Your money is my money," Sam replied, stifling a laugh as she rolled over and pulled the covers tighter. "Now, go see what's going on before she burns down the house."
The mattress dipped and rose as Martin got out of bed to inspect the suspicious noise coming out of Gracie's room. It was the kind of noise that didn't set off their federal training alarms but the parental one that told them their child was up to no good. Still grumbling he muttered, "I still don't know how I got stuck with the job of early wake-up patrol and noise inspection. I'm exhausted."
"You don't want to challenge me on exhaustion," Sam retorted. "I had to carry each one for nine months, push them out of my body, nurse them…"
Martin huffed and interrupted, "Are you going to use that excuse every time?"
"Yes," she replied definitively. "Besides, you should be the one to get up since it's you that they always ask for anyway."
Martin reached the door and mumbled, "One of these days I will get Gracie to confess that you taught her to ask for me."
"She's my daughter, she'll never rat me out," she replied as she glanced at the alarm clock that read: 12: 05 a.m. While part of her wondered what her 5-year old was doing up at this ungodly hour a bigger part of her just wanted one more hour of precious rest. So she clasped her eyes shut and tried to will herself back to sleep.
"Then I'll get the boy to do it," Martin said as he opened the door. "I know for a fact he accepts bribes. Two cookies and he'd rat out Barney."
She smiled knowing that he was right. At three-years old Nate was not only a certifiable cookie junkie but he was also the family tattle-tale. He never did it to be malicious; he was just a good, honest kid. Unlike his diabolical older sister who knew that his silence could be bought for a price; usually one involving chocolate chips.
She heard Martin walk down the hall and knock on Gracie's door before he opened it. She couldn't make out what he was saying but judging by his tone their girl wasn't up to too much mischief so Sam pulled the pillow over her head and prayed for sleep.
It didn't work because she was still wide awake when Martin returned a short while later. He slowly shuffled his way back to bed and she followed him with her eyes asking, "What was she doing?"
"Jumping on the bed smoking a cigarette," Martin replied as he crawled back into bed. "I told her to use an ashtray and keep it down; Daddy's trying to sleep."
Sam lifted her head and looked at him in disbelief. "What?"
"Relax. She's just excited about starting her first day of school. She was reorganizing her backpack – again," Martin replied with a yawn as he relaxed back into the bed. "I helped her put everything away and put her back to bed."
Sam rolled back over and curled up against him, tucking her head in the nook between his neck and shoulder. Her eyelids were heavy but there was no denying that she was awake. She could tell by Martin's breathing that he wasn't asleep yet either. "Can you believe she's starting kindergarten? It seems like just yesterday that we brought her home from the hospital."
"Mm-hmm," he mumbled as way of a reply.
Sam could still recall just how much Gracie weighed that day. Her arms still remembered the feeling of her little body bundled up in a blanket as she carried her carefully down the hall towards her room for the very first time.
She watched as Martin hustled ahead of her to make sure the pathway was clear of any possible dangers. He would have carried her and the baby if she had asked. She moved slowly partly because of her need to be careful but also because she was still sore; feeling like she was stretched out and broken in a way she didn't think possible. She reached the door and Martin moved Milo aside so Sam could walk into the room.
They had decorated the nursery in pale green and blues and the furniture was rich honey oak color. Sam nervously walked Grace to her bassinet and carefully laid her down.
Martin tiptoed up behind her and whispered, "Now what do we do?"
"Well, according to all the baby books I am supposed to sleep whenever she does so I guess I should go take a nap." She said and Martin nodded his head in agreement although neither one of them made any move to leave. She looked down at her tiny sleeping daughter; small and perfect. Gracie's face was still pale pink and she worked her mouth in suckling motion as she slept.
"I can stay and watch her while you sleep," Martin offered. His gaze focused on the baby.
"Um, I don't know. I mean, we can't take turns watching her all the time. She has to sleep alone eventually." She leaned close and rested her head on his shoulder. She was completely drained and exhausted but she was also hesitant to leave Gracie alone. "Then again, maybe we should stick around for a little while."
"Okay," Martin replied. They stayed like that for a few minutes, just watching her sleep. Martin tilted his head toward hers and whispered, "Can you believe she is ours? I keep thinking all of this is a dream and I am going to wake up any minute."
Sam laughed and snaked her arm around his waist. "I just spent over 30 hours in labor. Believe me, it's no dream; this is very much real."
Martin put his arm around her shoulder and pulled her to him. He kissed her head and said, "You were incredible."
Sam looked down at Grace and replied, "Yeah, well she was worth it." She paused and added, "Of course, when she's older I am definitely going to remind her how much I went through to bring her into this world."
He laughed. "It's an excuse that has worked for mothers for centuries."
She felt Milo's tail brush against her leg and she looked down to see the big Labrador move to sit under Grace's crib. He walked around in circles before finally finding a good spot to lie down and go to sleep. Sam was about to comment but when she opened her mouth instead of words she yawned.
"Why don't we put you to bed too? Milo can stand guard." He clicked on the white baby monitor, grabbed her by the shoulders and turned her around to move her out of the room. "The baby monitor is on and we can hear everything from the bedroom."
She hated to leave but she knew that she needed to sleep now because Gracie was going to need to nurse again in two hours. They walked into their bedroom and Martin clicked on the other monitor as Sam lay down. He sat on the edge of the bed to make sure it was working. He gave her an unsure look and said, "It's quiet."
"She's sleeping," she replied.
"How do we know what to listen for? How do we know if it's working?"
Sam considered and said, "Go back to her room and say something into the monitor. I'll stay here and listen."
"Good idea," he replied as he walked out of the room. A few seconds later she heard Martin's voice on the monitor. "Testing, one, two, three." Martin poked his head in and asked, "Did you hear me?"
"Yeah, loud and clear," she answered.
Satisfied they both laid down on the bed to nap. However, as tired as Sam was she could not seem to relax enough to sleep. She cracked open an eye and saw Martin's gaze focused on the nightstand where the baby monitor sat. She took a deep breath and exhaled hoping to calm her nerves but no luck. She scooted next to Martin and he shifted so they could both be comfortable. She wanted to sleep but she found that she kept trying to listen for any unusual sounds. Conceding defeat she raised herself up on her elbow, looked at Martin and said, "Maybe we should just bring her bassinet in here?"
"Good idea," he replied as he moved out from under her, hopped out of bed and over his shoulder added, "I'll be right back."
A few minutes later Martin rolled the small bassinet into their room with Milo in tow. He was pushing it slowly, doing his best to not wake the sleeping infant. He positioned it next to her side of the bed, checked to make sure Gracie was still asleep and then rejoined her on the bed. Milo moved to the corner of the room and plopped himself on his pillow bed and fell right back to sleep.
Sam moved closer to the bassinet and lay on her side with one hand resting on the edge of the bassinet. Martin moved in to spoon her from behind, his own hand resting lightly over her hip. She closed her eyes and miraculously fell right to sleep.