AN: Okay, so I know I said that I was going to try and finish up my unfinished stories, but this is an idea I've been throwing around for a while. This story is quite blatantly my version of that great movie, 'It's a Wonderful Life'. If there's anyone out there who's never seen this amazing classic film, just google the title and you should be able to come up with a link to watch it. The movie was voted the most inspirational movie ever made so it's definitely worth a look over. Anyway, I hope you like this. Please let me know what you think.
Dear God, please help my dad. Mom says that until he's better I can't see him, and I want to see him real bad. He's so sad right now and I just want him back. Help me get him back, please.
St. Anthony I'm asking for your help. Seeley is so on the edge of something destructive and he doesn't deserve that for his life. Send him the guidance he needs to come back to himself, please.
Look, I know I don't pray that often or at all really, but I'm seriously worried about Booth. Something's wrong and I seriously don't know what it is, but you need to help him. He's the most selfless man I know and he needs help. Please.
I don't know why I'm doing this, because it's completely illogical to think that there is a higher being out there in the universe somewhere that would intercede in someone's life just because I'm asking, but Booth always said that I have to have more faith, so for his sake, I'll do this. I think that if there truly is a higher power then that being would have treated someone as good as Booth much better in his life, so you need to help him. I'm worried that he is going to do something destructive with his life and I don't know what I'll do without him. I don't want to be the person I was before I met him, and though I'm not dependent on him, I've come to love how we depend on each other. Please, if I'm wrong and there is a god out there, help Booth. He has a lot of people that love him. Let him see that, please.
Booth stood on a bridge overlooking the Potomac River as snow swirled around him. He watched the water move below him, carrying chunks of ice along in the current. How could this be his life at the age of thirty seven? Fighting the memory loss brought on by his brain surgery was bad enough without longing for the life he'd made up during his coma. At least then he'd had everything he wanted in life. He had a beautiful and intelligent wife, a child on the way, and a job that didn't involve dead bodies.
He sighed and closed his eyes, trying to organize the flood of memories bombarding his mind with the same chaos as the ice in the river below. The flood had started out as a trickle really, a memory here or there, but now he was overwhelmed with them, though none of them seemed to be good. Maybe if he could find enough good in his life, then he could prove to himself that he was worth something in the long run, because it certainly didn't feel that way to him right now.
Booth clutched at his coat, pulling it tight around him. He'd remembered enough from his career in the FBI to know that he needed to leave on his coat, shoes and socks to make sure it didn't look like he'd intentionally thrown himself into a river. He glanced down again at the freezing water. He just needed one more chance to think he was good enough, and not the failure that he currently felt. Thinking hard, he reorganized the flood of memories in his mind. There had to be enough good in his life to make it worth sticking around, and he was determined to remember it.
"Seeley, you hold still," Margaret Booth scolded her two and a half year old as they stood at the exit ramp, waiting for the passengers to disembark. The little boy pulled at her hand and whined a bit as he tried to escape and urn toward the large windows. His grandfather chuckled and picked him up, settling young Seeley on his hip.
"Asking him to calm down is like telling the tide to stand still, you know that."
"But John's going to be here any minute and I want him to see how well behaved his son is."
"Seeley's always a good boy, he's just active, that's all. Besides, he's likely to not remember his dad at all you know."
"Don't say that. I've shown him pictures. He knows what his daddy looks like."
"Knowing what he looks like and knowing who he is are two different things." Margaret opened her mouth to retort, but closed it again as passengers began to exit the plane. She looked through the growing crowd with anticipation. Her husband would finally be back after two years away.
All around them, families hugged their loved ones, tears of happiness streaming down their cheeks at the sight of their loved ones gone for so long a time. The stream of passengers slowed, and Margaret was losing hope that her husband was one of the many people exiting when she saw him. He looked tired and so much older than he'd been even two years previous. There was a stoop to his shoulders and a dullness to his eyes that seemed to draw in those around him, dousing them in the hurt he was feeling.
"John," Margaret called out, waving her arms and running toward her husband. A smile lit his face, and for all his weariness, he looked much more like the man she married. He met her with open arms, pulling her close and kissing her. Here was something real, something tangible that he could hold onto.
"Where's my boy," he asked as they pulled away from each other, though never letting go. Margaret pointed to her father-in-law, who set Seeley down and watched as he ran up to his father.
"Daddy?" John grinned and picked the little boy up.
"That's right little man, I'm daddy. You're so much bigger than when I saw you last. What happened?"
"I can see that. What do you say we get out of here? I've had more than enough of airports." John set down Seeley and took him by the hand as they left the terminal with Margaret and his father. It had been two years since John had last been with them, and it was time to be a family again. This time, he intended to stay. He hadn't yet told his wife that his career in the army was over, but there would be time. For now, he just wanted to enjoy being together with the people he cared the most for in the world.
"Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Seeley, happy birthday to you." Margaret put a birthday cake down in front of the four year old and watched as he blew out the candles. She bustled to the living room to pick up her new baby, Jared, as her father-in-law cut the cake and dished out a piece to young Seeley.
"Grandpa, I thought we were waiting for daddy." The old man's face tightened and then he smiled down at his grandson.
"Your daddy's got some business in town and he'll be back later. Don't worry, there's plenty of cake left for him."
"But he's not gonna be here for my presents."
"Well then, I'll make sure to take lots of pictures so he can look at them later, okay?" Seeley nodded and took a small bite of his cake as his mother came back in the room with Jared.
"I was hoping he'd sleep a little longer, but looks like I was wrong. Do you like the cake Seel?"
"Yes thank you." Margaret ruffled his hair and smiled as she cradled the month old infant in her arms.
"You hurry up and eat that so we can get to your presents, okay?"
"Can't we wait for daddy?" His mother sighed and sat down next to him at the kitchen table.
"Sweetie, he wanted to be here, really but something came up and he's not going to be home until late. I don't want you up past your bedtime waiting for him. Besides, didn't your grandfather say that he'd take lots of pictures?" Seeley nodded his head and looked back down at the cake in front of him. It just wasn't the same without his daddy around. "Well then we'll just have to show him the pictures."
It was late when young Seeley woke from a fitful sleep to the sound of yelling. He squeezed his eyes shut tighter, hoping to block out the argument just down the hall, but it was to no avail. The voices were just too loud.
"Who gives a shit why it took me so long to get home? That's none of your business."
"It is when your son was wondering why you weren't there for his birthday. He was really disappointed John."
"Well he's just going to have to learn to live with disappointment then, isn't he? I don't want some sissy son who whines when things don't go his way."
"He's four! How can you think that you're doing him a favor?"
"Better he learn now than when he's older. No one likes a crybaby."
"I don't know what happened to you Jonathan Booth, but you're not the man I married five years ago."
"You think this is the life I wanted back then? Who the hell would want to be trapped in this shit hole?" The voices stopped, and the sound of the front door slamming shut announced that John Booth had left the house. A tear slipped out of Seeley's eye as he opened them to stare at the ceiling. If his daddy wanted him to be a grown up then that's what he'd have to do to make sure he'd stick around. There was no way his daddy would leave because of him. He'd show him just how much of a big boy he could be.