Based on the musical Jersey Boys, which I of course do not own. Francine is born.
An Angel is Born
Frankie paced nervously up and down the hospital waiting room. He was so jittery, although he had no idea why. He and Mary already had two children, two beautiful daughters. Surely he had gotten over his initial nerves of fatherhood then, right? Yet, no matter how much he tried to convince himself to act otherwise, he kept moving, eager and apprehensive.
A nurse passed through the room and Frankie asked how Mary was doing.
"She's still in early labor, Mr. Valli." She touched his arm as if to tell him to stay patient.
He paced for a few minutes longer. Then he decided he should call Bob. He had gotten Mary to the hospital around one in the morning, and had since been nervous and excited that he forgot to let anyone else know. In his state of mind he figured he needed someone at the hospital waiting with him.
He quickly explained where he was over the phone, and in less than a half hour, the songwriter showed up.
"Frankie, how is Mary doing?"
Frankie shrugged. He hadn't heard anything since the nurse came through.
"How are you doing?"
Frankie chucked and smiled at Bob's consideration. "I'm fine. Just nervous."
Bob cocked his head slightly, "You've already had two girls. Why are you nervous now?"
"I don't know." He paused and repeated, "I don't know," with more conviction. "I've been telling myself that for the past couple hours. But…" he paused in effort to keep Bob from thinking that he was crazy, "I keep getting the idea that this kid's going to be special. You know?"
Bob smiled and nodded.
The next forty minutes were filled with either silence or slightly tedious conversation. It wasn't that Bob and Frankie didn't enjoy talking with each other, in fact they connected more with each other than anyone else in the group, but Frankie couldn't focus. His mind kept wandering to Mary and his child about to be born.
"Frankie, do you want me to call Tommy and Nick?"
"Huh?" He snapped out of his reverie.
"Tommy and Nick. Do you want me to call them? They probably would want to know that Mary was having your baby now."
"Oh…yeah." Frankie was surprised that he hadn't thought to call the rest of the group. They had all been together for the better part of the last several years. He felt it should have been second nature to call them at such an important time in his life. But he hadn't.
As Bob stood up, Frankie stopped him. "Bob, I'll call them." He said, figuring that he should fix his own mistakes.
The two missing members arrived quickly, and Frankie and Bob greeted them. Nick walked immediately over to Frankie, while Tommy stopped to speak with Bob.
"Bob, when'd you get here?"
"About an hour ago."
"An hour? When did Frankie call you?"
"About two thirty."
Tommy glanced at his watch. It was now four. In a moment, a festering anger filled Tommy. He was beginning to realize how he was losing control of not only Frankie, but also the whole group, to Bob, and that made him both angry and scared at the same time. He pushed past Bob, who was a little lost on why Tommy was suddenly upset.
"It's funny," Frankie told Nick, "I didn't even think to call you guys until Bob suggested it."
"Gee, thanks." Nick said sarcastically.
"Don't be offended!" Frankie quickly hoped to make up for the lack of judgment with what he said. "My mind just isn't in the right place now."
Although Nick still had a feeling he was being forgotten, he halfway smiled and said, "Yeah, I guess so," with a nod.
As Tommy had pushed his way to Frankie, he asked, "Do you know how Mary's doing?"
He shook his head, "No. I talked with this nurse a while ago but…"
He was cut off as a nurse tapped him on the shoulder. "Mr. Valli?"
"You can go in and see your wife and newborn daughter now."
"Oh my God." Frankie's anticipation was renewed as he thought of seeing his child. He started to follow the nurse.
"Um, Frankie?" Bob stopped him and motioned to himself and the other two guys.
"Oh, uh, can they come too?"
"Yes, if you promise to be quiet. She's very tired."
Tommy laughed as he tried to remember a time that Mary had ever been quiet. He couldn't think of any.
They followed the nurse to Mary's room. She had her eyes closed, as she lied back on the bed. She wore no makeup and her curly, red hair was in a complete state of disarray, but she somehow looked perfectly beautiful. Frankie walked up to her and kissed her softly.
Her eyes opened and she blinked with the light. "God, Frankie did you have to wake me up?" She said, half-joking, half serious.
Frankie smiled. At least she was fine.
She looked around, "What are they doing here?"
"They waited with me."
She rolled her eyes, and the nurse called him, "Mr. Valli."
They had finished washing and wrapping up the little girl. "Would you like to hold her?"
"Yes, please." He took the little bundle from her, and the nurse left.
He sat down on a chair in the room. "Hi, sweetheart." He said, and he fell silent, staring at her, while the others continued talking.
"So what's her name?" Bob asked Mary.
"Actually, we hadn't decided on the name. We weren't able to agree on one."
Nick wandered over to where Frankie sat. "You could name her after someone."
"Who?" Mary asked.
"I don't know."
"Big help, Nick." Tommy said sarcastically.
"Shut up." Nick raised his voice slightly.
"What the…" Tommy began to counter.
"Will you two both be quiet! I'm trying to actually get some rest here!" Mary almost yelled.
With the noise, the little girl began to cry. Frankie quietly soothed her to stop her crying."
"Hey look," Tommy joked, "She'd gonna be a singer."
"You could name her Frankie." Bob suggested.
Frankie looked up at Bob, then at Mary. It was the first time he had taken his eyes off his daughter. "Maybe, Francine wouldn't be a bad name. Mary, what do you think?"
Mary was becoming more and more exhausted. "Really, I don't care right now. Francine sounds fine. Now, would you guys leave?"
The men agreed and began to file out. Frankie kissed the child lightly on her forehead and handed her to Mary. "Night Mary." He paused, and reached out to touch the little girl one more time. "Good night, Francine."
He left thinking about Francine. She was tiny and beautiful. He kept being reminded of the angels he had learned about in church. He thought to himself, "She's just a perfect little angel."