AN: Hey! This was another one of those 'Conditioning My Hair' ideas, in that it came to mind while I was, you guessed it, conditioning my hair. I hope that you like it. Please let me know what you think.
Disclaimer: The only Scrubs related things I own are my DVD Boxsets and the DVD player I use to watch them.
Big Brother Sammy
Sammy is four years and eleven days old when his sister is born.
At breakfast, Mommy told him that when he was sleeping, Daddy phoned to say that Elliot had had the baby – a little girl – and they were going to the hospital to meet her. Be sure to put your good clothes on, Mommy had said. You want to look nice for your new sister.
St Vincent's Hospital is a familiar place to Sammy. He went to day care here before he started Pre-K. Still, he holds on to Mommy's hand tightly, because he feels small compared to all the other people walking about here dressed in scrubs of pink and green and blue and he's not sure where he's going. Mommy seems to know though.
When they eventually meet Daddy, Mommy hugs him and says congratulations. Sammy zones out, looking around the maternity ward as Mommy and Daddy talk. (How's Elliot doing? She's well but exhausted – sleeping now. Thirty hours in labour. Thirty hours? Woman deserves a medal.) Looking around, it strikes Sammy that this is a happy place. It's light and bright in here and there are pictures of storks painted on the walls. Something tells Sammy that this place is hopeful, although he's not sure why.
"Hey, buddy," Daddy says, making Sammy refocus his attention. When Daddy kneels down to his eyelevel, Sammy notices that Daddy's eyes are red and bloodshot, and his dark hair his ruffled and messy. "Do you want to meet your little sister?" he asks.
Sammy nods, and he feels the excitement and nerves bubbling up in his stomach.
Daddy looks at him and grins. "Come on then."
Mommy hug Sammy and tells him that she'll see him in a little while, and Sammy holds on to Daddy's hand as they walk away, down the placid yellow corridor.
When they get to the nursery, Daddy lifts Sammy up so he can see through the nursery window. The little plastic cots are lined up neatly in rows, like Sammy's class has to when they go to assembly. Sammy can see lots of babies in there, lots of little people, safely wrapped in pink and blue blankets, but Sammy can't see his sister.
"Which one is she?" Sammy asks.
With the free hand that's not holding him up, Daddy points to a cot three rows back. "That's her, right there."
"Oh." Sammy wonders how Daddy can pick her out so quickly and so definitely, when to him all the babies look the same.
"Do you want to go in to see her?"
Sammy smiles. "Yes, please."
"Okay, great!" Daddy lifts Sammy down on to his own feet. "But when we get in there, we have to be quiet. Some of the babies will be sleeping and if they get disturbed and woken up, they can be cranky and they'll start crying, and we don't want that. Okay?"
"Okay." Sammy follows Daddy around the corner to the nursery door.
It's quiet inside the nursery, but not silent. Sammy hears the faint, unintelligible baby noises. To Sammy it's like they're having their own conversations in a secret language that only babies can understand. Over in the corner there are two other adults talking to a baby, swaddled in a light blue blanket. Sammy can't hear specifically what they're saying. They must be trying not to wake the other babies too, he thinks.
Daddy leads Sammy carefully in between two rows of cots and sleeping babies. At one particular cot, Daddy stops and tells him to wait there for a second while he gets a chair. When Daddy returns and the chair is put in place next to the cot, Daddy lifts Sammy to sit on his knee. "This," Daddy says, "is your little sister."
From here, Sammy can get a better look at his sister. She's got dark brown hair like Daddy but not like him. He has blond hair. Her face is scrunched up tightly and her eyes are closed. She must be sleeping too.
"What's her name?" Sammy whispers, remembering he has to be quiet because if he isn't then he might wake up his little sister and the other babies.
Daddy smiles, looking down at the baby. "Her name's Cassie. Cassie Alexandria Dorian."
"Cassie," Sammy repeats. "It's pretty."
Like she knows they're talking about her, Cassie opens her eyes. She blinks a few times and seems to look around the room, trying to take in her surroundings. Sammy notices that Cassie's eyes are blue, same as his.
Sammy frowns worriedly and he waits for her to start crying, like Daddy said. "Did I wake her up?" He's going to get in trouble now, he thinks.
Daddy doesn't look angry though. Instead, he's smiling at Cassie. "No, you didn't wake her," he says. "She woke up on her own."
"Oh," Sammy says, trying to hide his relief. "Okay."
For a minute or two, Daddy and Sammy watch Cassie as she stretches her little arm towards the sky and kicks her little legs, dancing to her own rhythm and song. Occasionally she lets out a little noise, like a squeak, as if she's joined in that conversation only the babies can comprehend.
"You can talk to her if you like," Daddy says. "She can hear you."
Looking up at Daddy, his eyes inquisitive, Sammy asks, "What should I say?"
"Whatever you want. Maybe you could just say hello and tell her who you are, what you like. That sort of thing."
Sammy seems to understand. He leans over slightly, so he's closer to his sister. "Hi Cassie," he says softly. "I'm Sammy and, um, I'm your big brother. I'm four years and eleven days old. Um... oh, for my birthday I got a Nintendo DS and a bike. My bike's my favourite thing ever. I can't ride it very well yet though but it's so cool." Sammy tells her about his bike. It's blue with lightning stripes on it. It's so much cooler than Bradley Hannigan's green bike. Then Sammy pauses, and looks away from his sister. "Daddy, can Cassie get a bike too?"
Daddy chuckles a little. "Not until she's a bit older. She needs to get the hang of holding her own head up first."
Sammy has no idea what Daddy's talking about, but he has another question, another thought that crossed his mind when he mentioned his next door neighbour's ugly green bike. "Who is Cassie going to live with?"
"Well, she's going to live with me and Elliot at our house."
The words seem to stay in Sammy's hearing for much longer. "Oh." The response is quiet. So quiet that Sammy's unsure if he even made a noise. He looks down at the ground, away from Daddy and Cassie, and his eyes begin to sting.
Sammy doesn't realise that Daddy's looking at him and not Cassie as the first warm, salty tear runs down his cheeks.
"Sammy," Daddy says. "Why are you crying?"
The little boy hesitates, not sure if he should even ask his question. "Do you love Cassie more than me?" he asks, not moving his eyes from their fixed stare on the floor tiles.
"No, of course not," Daddy answers quickly, no delay. "Why would you think that?"
"You're my Daddy and you don't live with me." That's the way it's always been. He lives with Mommy and Sean in one house, and Daddy lives with Elliot in another house. Sammy goes to Daddy's after school some days, and he stays over there every second weekend. But will Daddy still want to be Sammy's Daddy if he's Cassie's Daddy now and Cassie lives with Daddy and he doesn't?
Daddy lifts Sammy up slightly and spins him around so he's facing Daddy. But Sammy doesn't look at Daddy as he's being hugged tightly, a bear hug that's meant to make him feel better but just makes him feel more upset.
Daddy sighs before he speaks. "I know it's strange that I don't live with you and I know don't understand right now, but I promise you will when you're older." Daddy frowns, noticing Sammy's distant gaze. "Sammy, look at me," he coaxes.
It takes Sammy a few seconds before he decides to respond, and lifts his sad eyes to meet Daddy's reassuring ones.
"Just because I don't live with you all the time doesn't mean I love you any less," Daddy says. "And it certainly does not mean I love Cassie than you. I don't. I'm just as much your Dad as I am hers, even if I don't live with you all the time. Nothing's ever going to change that. You hear me? Nothing in the world?"
Daddy's smiling, but Sammy isn't. Not just yet.
"You promise?" Sammy asks.
Daddy holds out his finger. "I'll even pinkie promise it."
Sammy's smiling now, because a pinkie promise is really special and won't be broken. Ever.
"You know, I only live a couple of streets away from you," Daddy says. "You can come round to visit or stay any time you want."
Sammy's smile changes into a grin. "Really?"
"Yeah," Daddy replies. "You can come round for dinner or we could go to the park or the bowling alley or the batting cages, although that last one the least favourable option. But I'll take you if you want to go. And hey, I'm going to need your help when Cassie and Elliot gang up on me with all their girl power nonsense. We can't let the girls win now, can we?"
Sammy shakes his head resolutely.
"Although in a few years, it'll be you and Cassie ganging up on me, won't it?"
Cassie makes a gurgling noise that almost sounds like a laugh, like she's saying a sassy 'Yeah, we are.'
Daddy's laughing. It's quiet, but he's laughing undeniably. "I see you two are making a good team already."
Sammy looks down at his little sister and it seems like she's looking at him too. Good team, he thinks. I like the sound of that.
AN2: I hope you enjoyed this chapter. There are two options now. I could leave it as a one-shot, or (and this is the option I'm rooting for) I can continue this, showing snippets of Sammy's relationship with his sister. So, opinions please. Let me know if you'd read it, should I continue. Thanks guys. :)