A/N No excuses I know and I'm sorry.
Just An Accident
Mark hadn't wanted to leave his babies but when Addison had come into the NICU telling him that Callie wanted to see him, Mark couldn't leave the NICU fast enough. He was so relieved that things had gone well. He couldn't imagine having to raise the babies as a single father. He didn't think he could have done it. He was so glad that Callie had survived the accident. He wasn't sure if he could have gone on without her.
When he walked into Callie's room, she appeared to be sleeping. Mark didn't want to wake her. He knew that she had been through one hell of an ordeal and it was not one that either of them would ever be able to forget. He wanted her to get her rest for as long as she needed it. Just then, Callie's eyes fluttered open. She blinked a few times and then smiled as her eyes focused on Mark.
"Hi." Her raspy voice tried to croak out. Her voice came out barely above a whisper.
"Hey babe." Mark greeted her as he took her hand in his and gave it a light squeeze. It was good to see her awake and talking.
"The babies?" Callie asked. She didn't remember Addison talking to her only a short time ago. The drugs that she was on were making her very loopy.
"Tiny, but they are beautiful. We've got one of each." Mark told her with a small smile. He knew that the babies were nowhere out of the woods yet but it felt good to hear Callie's voice. Even if it was at a whisper .So he was trying to focus on the good right now.
"They need names Mark." Callie whispered. She didn't like having the babies nameless. Baby Boy Sloan and Baby Girl Sloan was not what she had intended to name her kids.
"Later. For now we rest." Mark told her. He knew that getting Callie to sleep was going to be a difficult task. He knew that she desperately wanted to see the babies but she couldn't go see them for at least twenty-four hours.
"Mark…No. The babies need names." Callie insisted, her voice still at a whisper.
"They will not be nameless forever Cal, but right now, you need your rest. You just had an emergency C-section." Mark argued. Just then Addison walked in to check on Callie. She had left the babies in very good-and watchful eyes and hands. She had wanted to come see Callie before Callie drifted back off to a drug induced sleep. She suspected that Mark may have a bit of a problem keeping Callie in bed even with the medications that Callie was currently on.
"Who's with the babies?" Mark demanded. He had only agreed to sit with Callie because Addison had promised that she would sit with the babies in the NICU.
"Derek's watching them." Addison reassured Mark with a small smile. She enjoyed seeing this side of him. This strong protective side. In the past, that would have turned her on, but not anymore. Now she was turned on by only one man and that man was the one keeping an eye on the small babies.
"They need names Mark." Callie reminded him sleepily. She was exhausted but she refused to go to sleep until her kids had names. She suspected Mark underestimated her stubbornness.
"How about Liam Ryan Sloan for your son?" Addison suggested. Callie had shown her the short list of names two weeks ago and that one had always stuck out in her mind. She wasn't sure Mark and Callie would be able to come to an agreement right now anyway.
"Perfect." Callie agreed with a smile. That name had been one that had been underlined & circled on a shorter list of names that only she and Mark had seen.
"How about Audrey Katelyn for our daughter?" Mark suggested as he reached for Callie's hand and squeezed it lightly. Audrey had been another late addition to the list. It had replaced Jaclyn on the list in the last few days. It was unique without being slutty or geeky.
"Very pretty." Addison commented as she waited for Callie's approval. Addison wasn't used to this Mark yet. She guessed that she would just have to get used to Mark as a father.
"That's perfect." Callie agreed with a smile. She wanted to see her children so badly. Waiting twenty-four hours was probably going to kill her. She was jealous that Mark and Addison and Derek had all seen Audrey and Liam. Mark sensed that she wanted to see her children so he pulled out his Blackberry and showed her the pictures that he had taken on his phone. Callie's eyes filled with tears as she studied her babies' faces. They were hooked up to all sorts of monitors and Callie hated that. She hated that her babies had had such a rough start to life on earth. It wasn't fair to them and privately Callie blamed herself.
"We made those Callie." Mark remarked softly as he looked at his kids. He was so proud of Callie. For all the issues that had gone on during the pregnancy, he and Callie had made two of the most beautiful babies Mark had ever seen. He knew that Callie had been uncomfortable and tired as the babies got bigger but he never doubted her excitement over this pregnancy. He never doubted that she was excited about becoming a mom and he never doubted how much she would love these babies.
"I'll go and leave you two alone." Addison told them softly. They needed this time to themselves. They were parents to two very sick babies. No one was sure if they would survive or not but Addison had to believe that they would. She had to or she'd go crazy. There were no two people who deserved this more than Mark and Callie.
"Thank you." Mark told Addison. He wasn't just thanking her for leaving. He was thanking her for all she had done for him and for Callie.
"No thanks necessary. I'll come see you two later." Addison told Mark quietly as she stepped out of the room. She doubted that Mark would be away from the babies for long, but she also knew that he needed time alone with Callie. Mark turned to face Callie after Addison had left but Callie had already fallen back asleep. Mark was glad that she wasn't trying to fight her exhaustion. She needed sleep after all she had been through in the past few hours.
Mark wasn't sure if he believed in any higher power, but he was so greatful that Callie had been spared and that Liam and Audrey had survived the trauma. They might not survive the trials of being born prematurely but for right now they were here and Mark was going to be greatful for that because it could have been a million times worse.
It had been twenty-four hours since Mark and Callie had become parents and they were finally going to be able to see their children. Well Callie would finally be able to see them. Mark had stayed by their side all night. Callie was nervous and excited. She was nervous that she wouldn't have that motherly instinct. Nervous that she wouldn't have that instant love that mothers had with their babies. Both Addison and Mark had repeatedly assured her that, that wouldn't happen, but Callie wasn't convinced. She was excited because these were her kids. They had come out of her body and they had been created out of love even though it hadn't blossomed to romantic love at that time.
Callie hated to admit it, but her best friend and boyfriend were right. The minute she laid eyes on her tiny babies, she was overcome with love and happiness and so much joy. They were tiny, so tiny but they were here and right now that was what Callie was going to focus on.
"I'm a…mom." Callie whispered in wonderment as she stared at her son and her daughter. She could still hardly believe that these two babies had been growing inside of her not two days before.
"I'm a dad." Mark whispered as he put his arm around Callie's shoulders. Neither of them could believe that this road was the one that they had been placed on. They were parents to two premature infants and they didn't even have any permanent commitment to each other. What Callie didn't know was that Mark was planning on proposing soon. He had wanted to do it now but Addison had advised against it. She told him that too much was going on and Callie needed to absorb the fact that she was a mom to two sick infants before she would be ready to add on the title of married woman and become Mrs. Callie Torres-Sloan. As much as he hated to admit it and postpone the proposal, Mark suspected that Addison was right about this.
"How…how are they doing?" Callie asked Addison as she bit her lower lip anxiously.
"They are doing well, all things considered." Addison reassured Callie. She knew Callie was scared. It was written all over her face. She knew Mark was scared too but he was doing a decent job at hiding it. Addison suspected that he was trying to be the strong one for Callie.
"What are their chances?" Mark asked quietly as he put an arm around Callie to steady her.
"You know I don't like to play that game Mark." Addison warned gently.
"I know but give us a damn percentage. They're our kids Addie." Mark told her. He wouldn't admit it but he was terrified of hearing the percentage. These babies had been born at 28 weeks. They were three months early. Mark tried to recall his neonatal rotation in med school but he also knew that those numbers had significantly increased in the fifteen years since he had been in medical school so he doubted that remembering those numbers would help him very much.
"About seventy to eighty percent." Addison finally told him. Callie took her eyes off of her children to look at Mark. She could see that he was scared and she was guessing that he was trying to hide that from her. She wished he wouldn't though. She was strong and she wanted to help him through this as much as he was helping her.
"I'm sorry Mark." Callie whispered as tears filled her eyes. She blamed herself for all of this. If she had stayed in bed, this never would have happened and Audrey and Liam would still be safe inside of her.
"Don't Callie. Don't let me hear you blame yourself for this. It was an accident. That's all it was." Mark told her gently. He was angry at himself for leaving her alone to get that ice cream. He had been so sure that she would fall asleep and he felt completely comfortable with leaving her alone while she slept.
"Mark's right Callie. It was an accident. Don't blame yourself. Please." Addison whispered. She hated watching two of her closest friends go through this kind of pain and despair and she hated that there was nothing that she could do to help them. The twins were holding their own right now but that definitely did not mean that they would have smooth sailing from now on. Premature babies always had some sort of issue.
"It was no ones fault." Came a voice from the door. Derek gowned up and walked over to the Sloan twins. He knew Mark better than anyone else did and he could tell that Mark was blaming himself for this accident. Mark was glad to see Derek. As well as Addison and Callie knew him, there were still bits and pieces of him that Derek knew best.
"Just enjoy your time with these two beautiful babies that you two created." Addison told Mark and Callie with a smile.
"For however long they get to stay on earth." Commented a pessimistic Mark. He didn't like being a pessimist bur he was trying not to get too attached. What if he got attached and then they both died. Mark wasn't sure he'd be able to recover from that.
"Mark, don't." Addison warned. When Mark had spoken, Callie had burst into tears again. Addison would not let Mark do this. She wouldn't let Mark's pessimism get in the way of the fact that he had two beautiful children.
"Sorry." Mark apologized quietly as he looked at Callie who looked ready to collapse. He pulled her into his arms, being careful of her incision and he held her close. He brushed his lips across the top of her head and listen to her as her cries turned into sobs. After Callie had calmed down a little, Derek helped Mark settle Callie back into her wheelchair.
"Come on, let's get some rest. We'll be back soon." Mark told Callie as he brushed his lips across hers.
"Okay." Came a croaky voice that Mark knew belonged to Callie.
Derek pushed Callie's wheelchair as Mark walked beside Callie rubbing his hand across her hand. Addison was going to stay in the NICU and keep an eye on Audrey and Liam. Mark knew that they both needed sleep and he was hopeful that once Callie was settled in her bed and asleep that he too could get some sleep because he was starting to run on empty. He knew that was good for no one and he needed to be as alert and focused as he possibly could be and he couldn't do that right now. Not without a decent few hours of sleep which he fully intended to do while lying in that poor excuse for a fold out bed in the hospital.