Author's Note: This is THE LAST CHAPTER! I'm glad actually. It has been a long journey and at times I struggled. Real life got in the way many a time, but it's done now and I feel I was true to the spirit of the show and the characters. I hope so anyway.
Enjoy the final chapter and thank you all for reading and commenting.
Mac and Felicia were hesitantly congratulatory when Robin broke the news of her engagement to Patrick the morning of Thanksgiving. Maxie and Georgie were elated, asking to be bridesmaids before Robin had even taken off her coat.
The past was still fresh in Mac and Felicia's mind and Patrick spent much of the morning and afternoon hours groveling and apologizing. Robin spent the day watching as acceptance took hold and when Patrick told them of the house he'd bought, Robin could see admiration and approval grow in her uncle's expression. Patrick was finally taking responsibility and Robin was happy. Eventually Mac and Felicia warmed to the engagement. Mac and Patrick even spent some time together bonding over the afternoon football games while Robin sat with Felicia, Maxie and Georgie talking about the wedding; the latter two already brewing with ideas and plans.
Mac congratulated them as they left and Robin felt the world was perfect.
Well, almost perfect.
Robert and Anna were still MIA and Robin found that after the initial shock and sorrow that had followed the news, it was quite easy for her to slip back into a life without her parents. It likely wasn't healthy or responsible, but Robin ignored the situation and the feelings of loss that it brought up within her. Instead she focused on her work, her health, the baby, and Patrick.
Together they had decided to move Robin into the house immediately to prepare for pending parenthood. They quickly settled into a groove and Robin could easily forget the past seven months and the pain and distress she felt. She easily forgave Patrick of every offense, and even forgave herself. They were both at fault for the hell they lived those months apart and they both knew that they didn't ever want to suffer apart again.
The wedding would be held after the baby was born. Robin insisted on this and Patrick, after much pouting and argument, finally agreed.
Christmas approached and Port Charles received record snowfall. The decorations glistened and the community's Christmas-spirit grew with the snowy weather. Robin spent her time at the house decorating and organizing when she wasn't working her required three days a week at the hospital.
Several days before Christmas, Robin and Patrick were both home at night (a rarity) and enjoying dinner together. The phone rang, disrupting their reverie, and despite their habit not to answer the phone while eating, Robin made for it anyway. Something told her it was a call she should take.
The caller ID read "restricted" but Robin picked up the receiver anyway. She listened with wide eyes and a grin that brightened her face. She looked to Patrick and his expression questioned. After a quick confirmation Robin hung up the phone.
Her parents were safe. That had been her mother, but she had been unable to elaborate or spend any time on the phone. She and Robert were safe; and Anna had said she would call back after Christmas.
Robin suddenly felt as if an invisible weight had been lifted. A weight she hadn't even realized was pressing down on her. Robin and Patrick made tender and slow love that night and afterwards Robin wept. They were tears of joy; of relief; of happiness; of contentedness…Robin felt she would explode with the excess of emotions surging through her. Patrick held her gently and Robin felt that if he were to let go she would drift away on the emotional current. He was her tether, her lifeline to sanity. Blissfully, sleep came fast and Robin slept, dreaming dreams she wouldn't remember but that calmed and comforted her through the night.
Christmas came and went with the usual commercial, religious, and personal significance it held for people. The Christmas party at General Hospital took on new meaning for Robin as she and Patrick listened to Alan Quartermaine read the Christmas story from the Bible. Robin nestled neatly against Patrick's body as they both cradled her tummy, fingers interlaced.
At home that Christmas Eve night, Patrick and Robin held their own celebration; their first Christmas together.
The New Year holiday followed quickly and Robin found herself alone. Patrick had been paged into work with an emergency so Robin curled up in front of the fireplace and tried to read a book. Her mother finally called again, and though the details were not given, Robin understood that her mother and father had been in hiding. Their job had taken a turn for the worse and they'd had to bail on their assignment. It posed a major problem for them and the agency they were working for. Robin interrupted her mother's tale to let her know some things were better left unknown. Robin was just happy they were alive and safe. Anna promised she would be in Port Charles by February 1st and she would spend the month with Robin, helping out. Robert should be back in town by early January, Anna explained. A few minutes later, Robin said goodbye to her mother. Exhausted, by 11pm, Robin was asleep on the cushy sofa, the fire slowly burning its white hot embers down to black, cool ash.
Robin awoke in the New Year in her bedroom with Patrick beside her. He must have come home late and carried her up to bed. Robin smiled and curled up next to Patrick, who responded immediately and wrapped his arms around her, his hands gently resting on the baby, who was currently making slow lazy turns within Robin.
Robin's due date was February 12th. She was now just over a month until the new life within her would be brought into the world. She felt her nerve endings sharpen and suddenly every moment of every day was a precious thing and not to be squandered. She sensed Patrick felt the urgency too. They never spoke of it, but they both lived like their lives as they knew them would be ending on that 12th day of the 2nd month.
It was January 31st that things took a turn for the worse.
The morning dawned bright and white. It had snowed through the night and Patrick grumbled as he dressed to shovel the driveway.
"I never thought through this house thing," he teased, kissing Robin's cheek as he headed outdoors.
Robin moved to the kitchen, humming nursery rhymes and preparing breakfast when she thought she heard a noise from the front of the house. Robin shuffled to the door in her robe and slippers and immediately heard Patrick calling for her.
Opening the front door with concern, Robin stepped out into the bitter cold to see Patrick flat on his back in the middle of the driveway, lying almost buried in about 8 inches of fresh snow.
"Patrick!" Robin exclaimed as she started to move out towards him.
"Stop!" he yelled, almost panicked, "the driveway is sheer ice under the snow. Go back inside and call 911; I can't move. I think I've done something to my back."
Robin nodded and rushed inside, dialing 911 and with a breathy voice on the verge of hyperventilation gave their address. Robin hurried upstairs and threw on some clothes then darted (as much as a pregnant woman can) back down to wait outside with Patrick for the ambulance.
Despite his protestations, Robin slowly crept out onto the driveway and tried to calm Patrick. They didn't have to wait long in the cold as within minutes they saw an ambulance, lights flashing but no siren, turn onto their cul-de-sac.
The paramedics rolled Patrick onto a backboard and loaded him into the ambulance. They then helped Robin in and they were off to General Hospital.
Five hours and thousands of dollars of tests later was it determined that Patrick had badly sprained his back. The muscles were twisted and knotted and Patrick was prescribed a muscle-relaxer to be used as needed. Limping to the parking lot, Patrick slowly and painfully lowered himself into Mac's car, and Robin followed.
Once home, Mac helped Patrick upstairs to bed, and then shoveled their driveway, carefully so as not to fall himself.
"Are you okay?" Robin leaned on the doorframe of the bedroom, looking with sympathy at Patrick lying flat on his back.
"Yeah," Patrick smiled, slightly grimacing. "I'm starving though. Did Mac leave?"
Robin nodded, than walked into the room bringing a box of Girl Scout Cookies out from behind her back.
"When did they get here!" Patrick's eyes widened and he licked his lips.
"Yesterday," Robin smiled as she handed Patrick the box of Thin Mints, his favorite.
Patrick pulled the box apart and opened the packaging, pulling out four cookies and stuffing them two at a time into his mouth. He looked up apologetically and Robin just laughed.
"Come closer, let me feel our baby. I've missed him," Patrick smiled as he finished his cookies, setting the cookies aside and reaching out with his hands. Robin had Patrick convinced it was a boy and now he was in the habit of calling the baby a "he" too.
Robin moved closer and sat on the edge of the bed, smiling as Patrick winced at the shifting bed.
"Sorry," Robin said.
"s'Okay…," Patrick said forcing a smile.
Reaching his hands out, he cupped Robin's greatly enlarged belly and started talking to the baby. The first time he'd done it Robin had been amazed; Patrick had started talking and the baby immediately responded, moving quickly and sometimes kicking or punching Robin's belly. Robin loved the sensation and watching Patrick interact with the unborn child. Waiting with anticipation for the baby to start again, Robin ran her hands through Patrick's thick, dark hair. After several minutes Patrick turned from the weather to the tale of what had happened, regaling the story with many embellishments.
"Robin," Patrick paused and looked at her, "when was the last time you felt the baby move?"
Robin's smile faltered as she realized she hadn't felt the usually very active baby move since late last night.
"It's been almost a day," Robin said softly as her mind tried to rationalize the horror of that could mean.
"We've got to get to the hospital," Patrick said, clenching his jaw and groaning against obvious pain as he tried to sit up.
"Stop!" Robin said emphatically, about to burst into tears. Patrick laid back down and stared hard at Robin, the worry and concern on his face tearing at her.
"I'll call my uncle," Robin said, her mind working rationally as if detached from her emotionally charged body. She saw more then felt herself move to the phone and dial.
Ten minutes later Mac was back; and twenty minutes later he was driving Robin and Patrick into the parking lot of the hospital.
Everything happened so quickly.
Robin was rushed into the ER, where immediately she was examined. It was determined that the baby had to be delivered at once by C-section; it was in distress, the umbilical cord wrapped around the neck.
Robin was afraid. Patrick, still suffering spasms of pain even though he'd taken two muscle relaxers, accompanied Robin to delivery in a wheelchair.
Roughly an hour later, and two weeks early, on January 31st at 3:23pm, Baby Drake was born.
It was a boy; but before Robin could cradle her newborn son, he was whisked away by the doctors. He wasn't breathing and his coloring wasn't good; Robin and Patrick cried silently as they waited and as the remaining doctors and nurses finished working on Robin.
"What's happening," Robin finally called towards the group of doctors huddled in the corner around the tiny form of her son.
"Don't worry, the doctors are doing everything they can to make sure your baby is healthy and strong," one of the nurses replied soothingly as she cleaned up the area around Robin.
"He needs an HIV test," Robin blurted, feeling so helpless and needing to contribute something.
"We know," the soothing nurse responded.
"Patrick," Robin looked at him, the father of her baby, and watched a tear fall from his eye.
"He'll be okay, just believe that. He's got you and me waiting for him. And don't forget what stubborn stock he comes from," Patrick cooed, his voice thick as he held back tears.
Robin smiled wanly and submitted to waiting. After what felt like hours, the doctors in the corner started moving with less urgency and then the first soft cry came from the baby boy.
Robin almost leapt from the gurney to rush to her son. She needn't have worried as the soothing-voiced nurse was now bringing him to her.
"Your baby boy, and he's beautiful," the nurse smiled and Robin happily reached out and embraced the small baby.
He was beautiful. Now that he was breathing he was rosy-cheeked and had a head full of jet-black hair. His nose was perfect, his lips were full and red, and he had ten perfect fingers and ten perfect toes. Robin smoothed the shocked hair back, but it refused to obey, remaining standing on end. Robin kissed the baby, holding him close and listening to him coo. He was so warm and small.
Robin looked at Patrick and with a grin she gently passed the baby to him. Seemingly forgetting about his sprained back, Patrick reached out for the baby and Robin watched as he performed the same examination as she had; looking over his tiny body, touching his fingers, touching his toes.
"Wow," he whispered and Robin's heart leapt with joy.
"Congratulations," Dr. Henson smiled as she approached Robin, Patrick and their newborn son.
Robin smiled at the doctor, though hesitantly.
"How long was he without oxygen?" Robin asked, unable to hide her concerns as she watched Patrick gently cradle his son.
"I'm not sure. You said you hadn't felt movement in almost a day, and he wasn't responsive when we delivered him. At this point I couldn't tell you if there'll be any residual brain damage."
Robin nodded, somewhat grateful for the doctor's bluntness, but also needing a bit more tact and hand-holding.
"Once he starts developing, we'll better be able to determine what, if any, damage was done," Dr. Henson added.
"What about HIV?" Robin asked.
"All the tests we've run thus far have been negative. No sign of the virus in the amniotic fluid, and we'll test the umbilical cord as well as take a blood sample when he's a little stronger. You've done everything right, Robin. You yourself are, for the most part, virus free. I'm hopeful he'll be perfectly fine," Dr. Henson smiled and Robin felt slightly reassured.
"Now you rest, and we'll get you moved to another room in moments."
Soon after Robin was moved, Mac, Felicia, Maxie and Georgie bombarded the room and took turns holding the baby. They were soon joined by Noah, and lastly Robert. The nurses were on the verge of kicking them all out but Patrick sweet-talked her into letting them stay a bit longer.
Everyone questioned his name, and teased Robin and Patrick endlessly because they had none. They hadn't even discussed it; so much for being prepared, Robin thought.
"Well, you must name him because I refuse to keep calling him baby," Maxie said matter-of-factly as she held the sleeping boy.
"He looks a little like a Norman to me," she added, laughing as everyone in the room groaned.
This started off a tirade of bad names, teasing the new parents with their silliness; Oslo, Dickie, Bartholomew, Jefferson, Ringo, Elvis, and so many others…
By the time Mac and Felicia carted the girls off and the two fathers departed on other required errands, Robin was exhausted and sore from laughing. The baby was taken to the nursery and Robin drifted in a fitful sleep, names bombarding her mind; keeping her from truly resting.
Patrick had requisitioned a cot that he set up by the window of Robin's room, and he now lay there, snoring loudly as his muscle relaxer's got the better of him. Robin and the baby were to stay in the hospital for an additional day just so the doctors could monitor the baby. Though only two weeks, he was still premature.
A few hours later, a new nurse Robin hadn't met yet brought the baby back in (his bracelet read glaringly, Baby Drake) for Robin to feed.
"I know you probably want to breastfeed; but you know with HIV you can't," the nurse looked apologetic, like she was at fault.
Robin quickly nodded and explained she had realized that and tried to come to terms. It was still hard for her to accept. She could sense her breasts were longing to be relieved of the pressure. Her body was ready for doing it, and it really hurt her that she just couldn't.
The talking stirred Patrick, and he slowly arose, his face betraying all the pain he felt, to witness the miracle of the baby eating. After a few minutes he declared he was going to take a walk around the floor to try and exercise his back.
Robin was holding the sleeping baby when Patrick got back.
"When did he finish eating?" Patrick asked, smiling, easing into the standard hospital armchair next to Robin.
"Not long after you left. The nurse said he'll eat often and a little at a time. It's a vicious cycle," Robin smiled.
"So, do you think we should name this boy?" Patrick asked.
"Yes, I suppose we should. Ideas?" Robin asked, already knowing what she wanted and ready to fight for it.
"A few, but I think you already know what you want to name him. And I can't find any fault with the choice," Patrick responded somewhat mysteriously.
"What choice?" Robin questioned, curious if he was correct in his assumption.
"Michael," he said, smiling and Robin nodded slowly.
"You're right. I do want to name him after Stone. Though obviously not Stone-though it is a great name," Robin teased.
"Okay, so Michael it is. And I think you should choose the middle name," Robin ceded.
"Thank you," Patrick smiled, "I actually found myself wandering the halls thinking about this. I have three ideas. Robert," Robin raised her eyebrows in surprise at this, "or Noah," Robin then nodded in approval, "or Scorpio."
"Wow," Robin replied. She was speechless.
"What would you like?" she finally asked him.
"Well, I sincerely hope we can someday have more children together, but if that doesn't happen I would hate to see your family's name end here. So I'm not opposed to Scorpio."
"I appreciate that, I really do. But it kind of sounds like he's some zodiac sign. I would prefer we name him after your father. Michael Noah Drake. It has a lovely ring to it," Robin smiled and looked down at the sleeping baby.
Nothing more was said about it. And the baby had a name.
Three months passed and Mikey (as everyone had taken to calling him) was developing at a wonderfully normal rate. The doctors were confident he'd suffered no brain damage and were pleased at his growth. His black hair remained thick and stubborn (like his father's¸ Robin thought happily) and his chocolate brown eyes were his mother's.
Mikey was also HIV negative, a fact which thrilled Robin to the ends of the earth and spurred conversation about when another baby might grace the Drake household. Robin cringed at the thought, only three months out of pregnancy she had just lost the last of the weight she'd gained.
Anna hurried her arrival after learning of the early birth and she promised to stay until the wedding. Robin accepted all the help her mother gave her.
The wedding was to be held July 1st at Wyndomere on the cliffs at the far side of the island. The early morning wedding saw perfect weather and perfect attendance. Everyone who had been invited had come. Robin had never known so many people cared about her happiness. Mac and Robert had walked Robin down the aisle, while her mother held Mikey in her arms. Maxie and Georgie were bridesmaids, while Noah was Patrick's best man. Robin couldn't help but feel that Mikey's birth had healed the last of the wounds that had divided Patrick and Noah for all those years.
So many things had changed for the better when Mikey was born that Robin couldn't imagine how the world would have turned without him.
The honeymoon was to be held later in the year, after the summer. For the time being, Robin and Patrick were content to love each other and their new son.
It was a pleasure Patrick had never thought he'd desire and a pleasure that Robin was sure she'd never know; it was the pleasure of being a family.