A/N: For anyone who is still willing to read this fic, thank you so much!
All That She Wants
"I can't believe it's already been a week!" Deb said as May squeezed her in a hug.
"You know what they say about fun," May winked. She released her grip on her daughter-in-law and turned graciously to Brooke. "I'm going to miss you, dear."
Brooke bit her lip and swiftly enveloped the older woman in a scorching hug. "Are you sure you can't stay longer?" she begged.
"I'm afraid not," May laughed. "The dogs are only in the kennel until tomorrow and they're brutal with late fees."
Brooke put on her best pout. "But I'd really love it if you could come to the appointment!"
May patted Brooke's stomach encouragingly. "Now, now. I'm honored that you asked, truly I am, but finding out the sex of the baby is something that's for you and Nathan." She kissed the tip of her fingers and pressed the kiss to Brooke's belly. "That's why the first available appointment was on the day we had to get back home, I'd wager. It's the universe's way of making things run smoothly."
"I'm gonna miss you," Brooke sighed. "You're so much fun! You're like the grandmother I never had. Come visit soon?"
"You can bet your bottom dollar!" May chuckled. "And when that baby comes, you make sure Nathan rings us up, you hear? I don't want to be even a half a second late!"
Nathan did a mock salute. "Yes, Grandma."
"Good boy!" She held open her arms. "Hug and kiss for your dear old grandmother?"
Nathan laughed and engulfed May in yet another hug. "Thanks for coming," he whispered into her ear.
"Stop your dodling, May. We've got to hurry up!" Royal grumped as he came into the room, pulling their luggage bags behind him.
"You've still got three hours before you have to be at the airport," Brooke whined. "Can't you stay just a little bit longer?"
May glanced at Royal, with a mischievous gleam in her eyes. "Royal?"
Royal promptly shook his head. "We've got things to do, May." He looked to Nathan. "Places to go, people to meet…"
Nathan hid a knowing smile, recalling their conversation from earlier in the week. He nodded. "My grandfather's anal about promptness, Brooke. It's best to just let him do his thing. Don't worry, knowing my grandmother, they'll be back before you can blink."
"What he said," May nodded.
Brooke twirled a strand of her hair as she watched Nathan and Royal share a firm handshake, then she approached her boyfriend's grandfather and surprised him by tossing her arms over his shoulders. "It was a pleasure meeting you, Mr. Scott. I hope you come back soon."
Royal stood there, ramrod straight in Brooke's arms, as though he wasn't going to respond, then to the room's surprise, he tucked one hand around Brooke and gave her a faint pat on the back. "The pleasure was mine, Miss Davis."
Brooke scurried back to Nathan's side, holding back the grin that wanted to burst onto her face. She knew what had just occurred was landmark, but the last week had trained her to not make too big a deal about it. "See you soon!" she chirped as she waved to the older couple from the front door, as they strode out to the taxi waiting for them at the curb. To her amusement, she even received a longwinded wave back from May from the back of the cab until it disappeared around the block.
Nathan shook his head while watching Brooke and his grandmother, the only two waving until they were out of sight. "No wonder she likes you."
"You're just jealous," Brooke taunted. "I think she likes me better."
"I think she likes you better too," Deb agreed, to the glare of her son. "You have a great rapport with her. In all the years I've been with Dan, I've never seen her take to someone the way she took with you. In fact, come to think of it, this was really the first time she and I have ever gotten along this well."
"She's my idol!" Brooke chortled. "Okay, cooking isn't exactly my forte, but did you also know she's this incredible seamstress? Knitter? Quilter?" she gushed. "She showed me a couple of really neat sewing tricks that I can't wait to try out! She also said she's going to make the baby his or her first baby blanket."
Deb nodded. "That's May for you. She knitted Nathan's first baby blanket too."
"I still have it if you'd like to see it sometime."
The blonde pushed a few strands of hair out of her face. "Done. You know what? I'll work on unpacking Nathan's old baby things while you two are at the appointment."
"Are you sure you don't want to come?" Brooke asked.
"Like May said, it's for the parents, not the grandparents. But thank you for the offer."
Brooke bounced up and down with the energy of a toddler on sugar. "I'm so excited!" she squeaked. "I can't believe we're actually going to find out the sex of the baby today! Aren't you excited?"
"Yes, but I'm toning myself down, because I think you're bursting enough for the both of us."
"I have so many ideas. Pink, blue, pink, blue…my head's just imploding with all kinds of themes!"
"C'mon, Cinnie Minnie!"
Nathan playfully slapped her butt. "For the Cinnabon obsessed? I think it works."
"I'm liking it more and more each time you tell me that, because I think it's code for 'Keep going, you're absolutely right and I can't stand to admit it!'"
"I knew it!"
Brooke reached around to her boyfriend's backside and gave him a well deserved pinch. As he reacted – rather violently – she flounced out the door, grabbing his letterman's jacket and her backpack on the way out. "See you later, Deb!"
"I've missed that old Brooke Cheer," he said once he got into the driver's seat. "It's probably why we didn't win the last three games of the season. Tree Hill High's cheeriest cheerleader wasn't leading the flock."
"Too busy incubating the captain of the next generation."
"Captain of what?" Nathan questioned. "The boys' basketball team or the cheer squad?"
"Well I tried to get your grandma to tell us all week, but all she kept saying was 'you'll find out when the time is right' so what's another hour?" She rolled her eyes. "And besides, who says she couldn't be captain of the girls' basketball team? Or a male cheerleader?" Her knuckles crunched into Nathan's arm. "Don't be sexist, baby."
"I'm not sex-ist, I'm sex-y."
"Whatever you say, Nate-y. Or – or did you say it was Natey the Greaty?"
"No! That is going too far, you can't soil that great nickname!"
"Oh, and whatcha gonna do to stop me?" From her backpack she extracted her sketchbook and pencil.
Nathan stole a peek at the drawings before she had a chance to turn the page. "Hey, isn't that the same thing you're wearing?"
"Good eye! Yeah, I updated a bunch of these old clothes Haley's mom gave me and while your grandma was here, we actually sewed them up to match my drawings."
"So that's what you two were doing all night in your room?"
"Oh?" Brooke challenged. "Were you eavesdropping?"
"It was hard not to hear the cackling through the door!" he shot back.
Nathan watched Brooke sketch from the corner of his eye. "How old are those things anyway? They look brand new."
"That's the beauty of a little reconstructive work."
"You've got a real talent," Nathan smiled.
"Thanks. Now if only I could apply the same thing to my grades. It kind of sucks that the baby is due right near the end of September. I already have enough trouble with school, so I can only imagine how behind I'm gonna be after the birth." She rolled her eyes. "Might have to give Tutor Girl a ring."
"Have you ever thought about a fashion scholarship?"
Brooke ruptured with laughter. "Yeah, if only! I don't think they really have those, do they?"
Nathan shrugged. "Fashion designers have to go to school somewhere, right?"
The ex-cheerleader shrugged distractedly as the hospital came into view. As her boyfriend began to search for a parking spot, she slid her doodles into her backpack. "I think there might be some organizations that offer scholarships for teen parents. Speaking of, when you graduate, where do you think you'll go? I mean, you'll probably get a basketball scholarship, right?"
"I might not go now. Who knows, right? You and the baby are top priority."
"And as much as I love that you just said that, I want you to be happy and not just bound by us. You've got so much passion for basketball, Nate. And you're made for it. You can't just give that up."
"Hey." He killed the engine and reached his hand over to Brooke's leg, where he rested it. "Let's just take things one day at a time, okay? Looking to the future is good, but right now I think we need to live in the present. So let's just get through the pregnancy first and then we can worry about graduation."
Brooke lifted his hand from her leg and pressed his fingers to her lips. She kissed them sweetly, then blew a single word into them: "Okay."
"Now, are you ready to go see our baby for the first time?"
Brooke pressed her hands together and made a series of tiny claps in rapid succession while emitting a high pitched squeal. "Yes!"
On their way up to the hospital doors, Nathan looped his arm around Brooke's shoulders and opened the door for her. "Do you have any blondes in your family?"
"Why?" she asked, leaning her face into the side of his shoulder.
"Just curious. I think it's a recessive gene."
"And what's that got to do with anything?"
"I'm just hoping he or she isn't blonde. If it's a girl, I'd like to see her get your hair."
"Oh come on!" Brooke patted his chest. "Your grandma's blonde. But, just for the record, no, I can't recall any blondes in my family. Not that my knowledge of my family is that great or anything, mind you. My parents were only children, my dad's parents had him late in life so one died before I was born and the other died when I was almost two, and my mother – and I use the term loosely – was disinherited, I would assume for being the epic bitch that she is. But from the few pictures I've seen growing up, they were all black or brown." She rolled her eyes. "Anyway, what's wrong with blondes?"
"Nothing's wrong with blondes, they just seem to represent something tragic in my life." Nathan pressed the up arrow on the elevator.
"Tragic?" Brooke perked her eyebrow. "You mean Peyton?"
"And Keith, my uncle, and Lucas. And even my grandmother and my mom. I love them both, mind you, but…I don't know. Blondes versus brunettes. It seems there always has to be a winner in my family and yet nobody wins. I just want to break the mold I guess. Call me superstitious." The doors slid open, a slew of people rushed out, and the two teenagers stepped inside.
"Yeah, well, I wouldn't be opposed to her resembling your mom." She shrugged nonchalantly. "But I hope whatever the case, girl or boy, blonde or not, I hope our baby has your eyes." Brooke looked down and pressed the button for their floor.
"Did you pull that line out of a romance novel?"
Brooke punched him lightly in the arm. "Shut up! I just…like your eyes, Nate. And if I have to get up at three in the morning to change a diaper or heat up a bottle, I want those to be the eyes I look into."
Nathan grabbed his girlfriend by the shoulders and steadied her in front of him. He hooked her chin with his index finger to tilt her head back and bring their eyes into alignment. The elevator dinged and the doors began to open. Nathan quickly pressed the button to close the doors, causing several people on the other side to growl and yell in protest as the opening doors began to close again, then he leaned down to Brooke's height and kissed her softly on the top of her nose, before moving his mouth to her lips in a tender, moist moment.
Brooke slid her arms around Nathan's neck and held his mouth to hers until the doors opened again, this time with a rush of angry bystanders.
"Holding up the elevator to have sex!"
"Get a room!"
Brooke giggled mid-kiss and withdrew her arms from Nathan's neck, tugged him out of the elevator, and the doors immediately shut behind them. Her face was flushed and while she laughed, Nathan began to also. "What was that all about?" she asked, when she finally could breathe. "Were you just trying to be spontaneous or something?"
"No." He opened the door to the waiting room. "I just wanted to assure you that every time you wake up at three A.M. to change a diaper or heat up a bottle, I'm always going to be right there with you."
"Nathan Scott…" Brooke shook her head. "I don't even know what to say."
Brooke jumped and clapped her hands together giddily. "That's us!" She tugged Nathan up to the counter. "Here!"
"You'll need to sign in here."
Brooke scribbled her name onto the sign in sheet. She grasped Nathan's hand energetically as the nurse led them through a back door, stopping only once to shake Brooke's weight and height before showing them to their room.
"I'll need you to put on this gown." The nurse checked her clipboard. "I see here you have quite a bit of trouble early on in your pregnancy. Have you have any unusual symptoms since your last appointment?"
Brooke climbed onto the paper covered bed and shook her head. "Swollen feet and some back pain, but that's normal from what I've been told."
The nurse nodded and made a few more notations onto her clipboard. "The doctor will be with you shortly."
Brooke snatched the blue paper dressing gown off the table as soon as the nurse was gone and then turned suggestively to Nathan. "You wanna undress me, Mr. Scott?"
Nathan let his hands fall to her hips. "I undress you constantly," he winked. "With my eyes. Any chance to do it with my hands is one I'm not going to waste." He hooked the hem of her shirt between his middle and index fingers and tugged it up slowly, allowing his palms to lick the sides of her torso until they got to the point of her underarms and Brooke finally had to raise her arms so that he could get the shirt off completely.
Brooke let her arms fall onto Nathan's shoulders and smiled brilliantly at him, wearing just a turquoise bra and black maternity pants. "I like it when you look at me like this," she said wistfully. "It makes me feel sexy."
Nathan caressed his hands over her swollen belly and pressed them upwards to embrace the curvature of her bust. "You look sexy no matter what."
Brooke scrunched up her nose and flashed him a grin, showing off all of her pearly teeth against her red lipstick in the way that was entirely unique to her. "I can't tell you how long I've wanted this. How lucky am I?" She leaned in on her tippy toes and planted a kiss on Nathan's mouth.
Nathan slipped the gown out of her hand and shook it open. "As much as I'd like to continue staring at you like this, you should probably put this on before the doctor gets in." Despite Brooke's pout he managed to wrangle her into the gown and get her onto the bed. He was holding her hand when the doctor arrived.
"So we're going to find out the sex of the baby today?" she asked, smiling at the happy couple. She held out her hand, shaking Nathan's hand and then Brooke's. "I'm Dr. Denise White, by the way."
"Brooke Davis," Brooke greeted. "And this is my boyfriend, Nathan Scott."
"It's a pleasure to meet you," Dr. White nodded. She turned on the ultrasound machine and moved to the drawer to withdraw a tube. "Now, this is your first pregnancy, Brooke?"
Brooke nodded. "Yeah and you don't have to tell me: that's going to be cold, isn't it?"
"I'm afraid so," Dr. White agreed. She folded back Brooke's gown just enough to reveal her stomach and carefully applied a palm sized globule of clear jelly. For a few moments, Dr. White moved the node around Brooke's belly and a fuzzy image appeared on screen.
Brooke pointed excitedly to it and squeezed Nathan's hand, emitting a high pitched squeal. "That's our baby!"
Nathan squinted a little. "Uhm – exactly what is our baby?" he asked, unsure of where to look. It all just looked like a bunch of undulating lines to him.
Dr. White looked at the screen and frowned slightly. "Hm."
The smile fell from Brooke's face. "'Hm'? Is that a bad 'hm'?"
Dr. White shook her head and pointed to the top left of the screen. "That's your baby's head," she said. Then, carefully, she outlined a fetal form with her gloved finger. "And that would be your baby, there. See that, it's a foot."
Brooke nodded eagerly. "And is it a little girl foot or a little boy foot?" she prodded.
"That's the problem," Dr. White spoke gently. "I can't tell."
"But - why not?"
Dr. White laughed. "Well, he – or she – has crossed his – or her – legs."
"They can do that? In the womb?" Nathan exclaimed.
Dr. White nodded. "Mhmm. They can also suck their thumbs, just like yours is doing," she laughed while pointing to the screen. "See that right there? Your baby's sucking its thumb."
Brooke's jaw dropped open. "Can we get a picture of that?"
"But there's no way to know the sex?" Nathan clarified.
"Not unless the baby chooses to uncross its legs."
"How do we get it to do that?"
"Well, sometimes parents have had luck pressing on the mother's stomach to try and nudge the baby into another position."
Brooke nodded eagerly and began to poke her stomach. On the screen, the lines wiggled and jiggled and the little frame moved somewhat. "Is it working?"
After roughly ten minutes of poking and Brooke getting up, walking around, and then lying back down, Dr. White shook her head sympathetically. "I'm sorry, Ms. Davis. But your baby simply doesn't seem to be cooperating today."
"Is there a way to find out at a later date?"
"You'd have to schedule another ultrasound. I'm not sure what kind of insurance you have though, if any, but typically insurance only covers one ultrasound. They're extremely pricey out of pocket."
Brooke nodded disappointedly. "I understand."
Dr. White took a cloth and wiped off Brooke's stomach and the node before sterilizing the latter, then she knelt down to the printer on the machine and pulled off the print it had taken of the ultrasound. "At least you have this and if you do choose to come in for another ultrasound at a later date, I'll be happy to try again with you. As of now, you seem to be progressing beautifully, Ms. Davis and I look forward to seeing you again for your next appointment."
"Thank you," Nathan and Brooke spoke in unison.
"Have a wonderful afternoon."
Nathan waited until Dr. White had left and then he turned to Brooke, who he realized was busy with her eyes glued to the ultrasound photo. He leaned into her personal space on the bed to get a good look and realized that Brooke's eyes were glittering in the fluorescent light. He grabbed a tissue from the box on the counter and handed it to her.
"Thanks," she sniffed, dabbing her nose. "You know what? I don't even care! Boy or girl doesn't matter: just look at that! That's our baby, Nathan. We created that! Our very own little thumb sucker."
Nathan rested his head on the pillow against Brooke's, unable to take his eyes off the photo. "All I want is for him or her to be a perfectly happy, healthy baby, just like his or her gorgeous mother."
Brooke snuggled her cheek against Nathan's. "That's all that I want too."