Warnings: Just Awkwardness
Just a Mirror universe drabble. The boys come to see Zechs and Noin's new family member in May of AC 198
The excitement was rather dulled the morning after. Light shimmered faintly through the half-sheer curtains. On Mars, light was strange and not quite brighter but not quite darker and tinged with a color that wasn't quite blue. Everyone on the colony had gotten relatively used to it but there was still something faintly unnerving about it.
Lucrezia slept deeply in her hospital bed, curling on her side. Her short hair was sleep mussed and face tired. An I.V. was still stuck in one arm. She should have been the least attractive thing around, but Milliardo thought she was the most beautiful woman he'd ever lain eyes on.
The baby was a healthy little girl. He'd cried when the doctor assured him she was perfectly normal.
After the war, birth rates had dropped astronomically. Too many men and women had suffered serious injury to their reproductive organs or sustained enough damage to their body that procreation was just not possible. Added to that the effects of various gaseous weapons that had been used in certain places... Nearly a forth of all live births had serious defects and fully half of those ended up dying in the first few weeks. Any babies were precious miracles.
She had ten fingers and ten toes. Her limbs were formed just right and even lengthed. Her organs were healthy. Her skin was clear and soft and whole. Her eyes saw and ears heard and she had a jaw. She felt touch and her bones weren't brittle as glass. She showed no sign of a genetic mutation or genetic illness from either parent. Absolutely nothing was wrong with her. Milliardo had cried harder than even Lucrezia at that news.
They named her after Lucrezia's mother, but Milliardo kept crooning to the sleeping infant his Little Ninny. Now, he stood next to the crib and stared at the perfect little girl as she slept. Good God, what right did he have to be this child's father? How could he ever have thought he was ready for this, for the crushing responsibility? He could break her, ruin her, utterly fail her...
There was a faint knock and then the door opened and a set of curious blue eyes stared through a narrow opening. Milliardo could see others behind him and beckoned them in. The five teenagers were all nervous uncomfortable but their curiosity was outweighing that. Milliardo found it rather...cute.
"We don't mean to interrupt-" Quatre began, smiling a bit even as his eyes drifted towards the crib.
"Oh God, it's a real baby," Duo whispered in awe. His hands were curled in the back of Quatre's shirt as he stared over the blond's shoulder, as if he were terrified of somehow hurting the child. Milliardo was sure he'd seen infants before, but Duo looked skittish as a colt. The braided boy lifted his awed gaze onto the father. "...It's...okay, right?"
Duo knew about the birth defects and the stillborns and the rising SIDs cases. Milliardo could only nod to him and instantly, Duo relaxed a fraction, but he still clutched to Quatre's shirt.
Behind them, Trowa, Heero, and Wufei didn't seem to know what to do with themselves. They kept looking at the baby and then Lucrezia and then out the window and everywhere else that wasn't one of the former two. It would have been amusing- No. It was amusing. Milliardo hid a soft smile.
"She's beautiful," Quatre breathed, a soft grin on his face. "We just wanted to see the new addition to our family."
"Family?" Milliardo asked with surprise. The blond just smiled at him while Duo peeked over his shoulder again.
"Of course. W-we're her uncles now." Milliardo politely ignored the slight waver in Duo's voice. "I mean, who else is going to teach her how to pick locks and sneak out to meet her boyfriend - of course, we'll have to help you put the fear of God into him-"
"You are not teaching my daughter to pick locks!"
"And to jump start cars."
"Damn it, Maxwell! My child won't be a delinquent!"
"And how to kick guys in the groin-"
"No Max- wait. No, that one's okay."
Duo grinned and even though it was still rather awkward, Milliardo felt warmed by it. He sat down in the soft chair next to his daughter's crib. "...Would any of you like to hold her?"
There were four suddenly very white faces, but Quatre just smiled and took a step forward with Duo stumbling behind him.
"Not hold," Quatre said softly even as he reached out and gently ran his fingers along the infant's cheek. "She's so soft..."
Duo audibly swallowed and Milliardo got up, grabbing his hand gently. The teen gave him a half-frightened look as Milliardo tugged his hand out from behind Quatre and towards his daughter's hand. Slim fingers brushed along her tiny hand, shaking faintly, but when Milliardo let go, Duo didn't jerk back. His touch was so light, terrified, but scared as he was, Duo looked happy through it.
And then Heero suddenly grabbed Duo's shoulder and leaned over both of the other teens to get a look at the child. Milliardo found the strangely open look of curiosity on Heero's face both disconcerting and strangely endearing. Heero didn't move to touch the infant, but the fact that he got this close was amazing. Trowa and Wufei made no such attempt.
"...Her name?" Wufei asked, arms folded over his chest uncomfortably. He must have been dragged here rather forcibly.
"Mirna, after Lucrezia's mother."
The boy nodded, satisfied, then got a half amused smirk. "So. Do you want to see what we brought you now or would you prefer to be overwhelmed at the house?"
Milliardo blinked and Quatre got a distinctly embarrassed look on his face.
"It's rather...extensive," Trowa explained. Before Milliardo could think of a response, there was a voice from the bed.
"How about we wait until I can go home and we can all be properly shocked and thankful," Lucrezia murmured, expression amused. Milliardo stepped over to kiss her forehead.
The boys didn't stay long. Trowa and Wufei refused to touch the baby, but Quatre and Duo were rather fascinated by her and Heero kept giving her measuring looks. Milliardo thanked them all for coming anyway and invited them to the house the next day when mother and baby would be venturing there. It was rather sweet that they'd flown all the way to Mars to meet the newborn. Three days in a shuttle couldn't have been comfortable.
Milliardo closed the door after them and turned back to smile at his wife and child. He'd never been happier.
On cue, Mirna woke and began to cry, but Milliardo couldn't manage to be upset by it.