Title: Never Grow Up
Tagline: "Oh darling don't you ever grow up, don't you ever grow up, it could stay this simple."
Summary: "A child is a curly dimpled lunatic." -Ralph Waldo Emerson. The most perfect example of everything good and honest in this world is dancing in her bedroom with a college tee that is ten times to big for her.
Disclaimer: All television shows, movies, books and other copyrighted material referred to in this work, and the characters, settings and events thereof, are properties of their respective owners. As this work is an interpretation of the original material and not for profit, it constitutes fair use. Reference to real persons, places, or events are made in a fictional context, and are not intended to be libelous, defamatory, or in any way factual.
Author's Note: This is nothing but fluff, so it's not so much my best. Personally, I think that I write angst better but I was watching The Lion King the other day and I just couldn't help but want to write this. I do hope you enjoy this, it took quite a bit of work to get it to this point but there's a toddler and Callie and Arizona plus some singing thrown in so, please enjoy. And don't forget to share your thoughts with me, because that certainly is my favorite part of writing.
"Your little hand's wrapped around my finger
And it's so quiet in the world tonight
Your little eyelids flutter cause you're dreaming
So I tuck you in, turn on your favorite night light
To you everything's funny, you got nothing to regret
I'd give all I have, honey
If you could stay like that
Oh darling, don't you ever grow up
Don't you ever grow up, just stay this little
Oh darling, don't you ever grow up
Don't you ever grow up, it could stay this simple
I won't let nobody hurt you, won't let no one break your heart
And no one will desert you
Just try to never grow up, never grow up"
Never Grow Up- Taylor Swift
Rhabdomyosarcoma. It is the one word that sends shutters up her spine when she hears it, the one word that makes her heart sink into her stomach, the one word that makes her feel defeated before she ever picks up the scalpel. A type of cancer of connective tissues that can be located around the intestines, muscle tissue or any other skeletal tissues. It is the most common cancer in tissues of children from one to five and this certainly was not the first time that she had seen it this staged. Olivia Grace was four years old, she had the biggest smile of any patient on the Peds floor with sparkling emerald eyes and dark raven hair. She had been battling this cancer since she was only five months old, through various rounds of Chemo, radiation and experimental treatment. Today, she and Karev attempted to remove most of the tumor through surgery but it was too far gone. She hates losing children, especially children so young, children who never had a chance to make a difference in the world.
Arizona Robbins has always been a softie at heart when it comes to her patients but there was something about Olivia. Something that she loved so dearly, something about the way that her green eyes sparkled with the utmost innocence and child like wonder, something about the way that her bubbly voice called out her name when she entered her room. To lose her today, to lose her to a cancer that they should have been able to beat, took all that was left of her.
She keeps going over again and again in her mind where they went wrong. Some say it is that quality that makes her a great surgeon, but it is also that quality that keeps her awake at night. She is the best of the best, Dr. Webber assures her, but tonight, tonight she just doesn't feel that way.
It is beginning to snow when Arizona pulls into the drive way and it creates the familiar smile sneaking upon her face. Christmas is a week away and it certainly looks like Seattle is going to have a white Christmas again this year. Making the move to Seattle was one that she had not been sure of when she packed up her car and left her family behind. But now, eight years, a job, and a family of her own later, she knows that making the move to Seattle was the beginning to a series of right decisions that she made for herself. Even now, when the loss of such a young patient shakes her to the core of everything that she is, she would do it all over again if it meant that she got to home to the heaven that is waiting for her.
Digging through the pockets of her large, black coat, the snowflakes fall peacefully around her. Swallowing back the emotions that she is sure is hanging onto every inch of her body, she turns the brass doorknob in her hand, pushing open the door. She is hit by the black abyss of a darkened living room and the smell of the sweet perfume of her loving wife, the perfume that causes her heart to skip a beat and her breath to become lost somewhere in her chest. Dropping her bag and keys onto the near by table, she hangs her coat onto the coat rack with a sigh.
She is heading up the stairs when she hears it. The familiar music. The familiar voice. With a smirk playing upon her lips, she turns the corner to find the light cascading from under the white door, shadows dancing upon the hardwood floor beneath her. Running her fingers through her disheveled blond curls, she bites her bottom lip carefully as she opens the door to the master bedroom in which she shares. The sight before her captures her breath and steals her heart, suddenly, like all the many times before, it all manages to fall away around her. The loss. The stress. The anger. The frustration. Suddenly, it doesn't matter that she lost a patient, it doesn't matter what she had a massive break down in front of the Chief and it doesn't matter that she made an ass of herself in front of Alex Karev. No, she smiles with a giggle, the only thing that matters to her is the two dancing girls standing before her.
"Imma be a 'ighty kwing so nenemies beware!" The toddler sings loudly and it takes everything that Arizona has left in her to suppress the giggle inside of her. A mess of blond curls and tiny limbs, the young girl dances to a beat of her own, a trait that she knows she must have received from her side of the family.
"Well I've never seen a king of beasts with quite so little hair," The voice of an angel belongs to the raven haired beauty that still manages to steal her heart and make her fall in love with her all over again. Even five years after the night that she kissed her in Joe's bathroom, even after five years of happiness and sadness, five years of loving and losing, five years of laughing and crying together. Five of the best damn years of her life.
"Imma be the mane event, like no kwing was before! I'm brushing up on looking down and I'm 'orking on my roar!" The curly haired toddler makes her own roaring lion sound, pretending to sharpen her claws on the bed post. She is wearing a shirt, a shirt that is ten times too big for her with the word MAMI written across the front. It's good to know, she smiles, that someone else loves that shirt just as much as she does.
"Thus far, a rather uninspiring thing," Callie's voice is the most perfect melody; she is the harmony that lives inside of her head, the beat in her heart, the oxygen in her lungs, the blood that pulses through her veins.
"Oh! I just caaaaannt wait to be kwing! No one saying do this, no one saying stwop that!" The little voice sings, badly off key, but it is the best sound to ever fill this large house. Leaning against the doorway, the smile plays upon Arizona's lips, the warmth rushing through her, healing her, completing her.
"No one saying see here!" Both Calliope and their daughter sing in unison and she swears that she melts into a puddle standing right there. How could any one ever question this? How could any one ever say that their love is wrong? How could any one ever say that it wasn't right for them to bring a life into the world the way that they had? Couldn't they see? This was the American dream. This was all she would ever need.
"Free to run around all daaaay," Their daughter sings loudly, twirling about in mother's large college tee. The college tee that Arizona has worn to bed so many nights, the tee that she holds close to her when Calliope is away, breathing it in, breathing her in, and knowing she is the only thing that matters.
"Well that's definitely out," Her voice catches both her wife and their daughter off guard. A pair of warm chestnut brown eyes quickly find their way across the room and stare deeply into hers and she loves how she can do it. How even now, after five years, after everything they have been through, she can still stare straight into her soul with one careful bat of those long eyelashes.
"Free to do it all my waaaay!" Her daughter sings, wrinkling up her nose and she can't stop the smile on her face as she steps into the bedroom to join her two lovely ladies.
"I think it's time that you and I arranged a heart to heart," Arizona playfully scolds, pointing her finger at the toddler as she wrinkles up her nose in attempt of playful annoyance. A squeal escapes from the young girl as she stands beside of her Mommy, a hand clamped tightly within her own as her eyes study her Mama's face.
"Kwings don't need advwise from wittle ornbillfs for a start," She incorrectly sings the lyrics and it melts her at the sound of her child like voice. It's her daughter, their daughter. A daughter made of love, of innocence and wonder, a daughter who like her Mama, holds every piece of her heart.
"If this is where the monarchy is headed, count me out! Out of service! Out of Africa! I wouldn't hang about! This child is getting wildly out of wing!" Arizona sings, a smiling laughter escaping from her lips. The young girl is quickly scooped up in Callie's arms, holding her tight against her as she buries her fingers into her side, creating a burst of innocent laughter escaping from the young girl.
"Oh, I just can't wait to be king! Everybody look left, everybody look right! Every where you look, I'm standing in the spotlight!" Both Calliope and the toddler sing in unison as Arizona watches them with a smile upon her face; she wonders how things could get any better than this, any more perfect or amazing.
"Let every creature go for broke and sing! Lets hear it in the heard and on the wing! It's gonna be Queen Mady's finest fling!" Arizona sings, taking Mady into her arms with a smile that steals Callie's breath. Mady smiles at her Mama, wrapping her chubby little arms around her neck, the brightest pair of blue eyes staring into hers and suddenly everything good in the world is right here, in her arms.
"Oh, I just can't wait to be king! I just can't wait to be king! Oh, I just can't waaaaaaaaaait to be king!" The family sings together as Arizona lifts their daughter into the air, holding her high against the ceiling as she shrieks out in laughter and excitement. The song fades away, not to Arizona's disappointment and Calliope turns off the classic Disney movie soundtrack as studies her wife and her daughter together. Tossing her in the air, Arizona catches Mady with a similar grin that is pressed upon her chubby cheeks and she doesn't know what she did to get this lucky, to deserve someone like Arizona as a wife and someone like Mady as a daughter.
"Mama! Mama! We misseded you!" The toddler speaks incorrectly and Arizona only smiles, lowering her daughter onto the floor. She brushes the blond curls away from her daughter's face, and it all makes sense. All the places that she has been, the places she is going, it all makes sense when she looks up at her under those long eyelashes.
"I missed you too, sweetie. But it's past your bedtime," Arizona states with a warm smile and Mady only shakes her head, glancing up at Calliope.
"But Mommy said that I could stay up!" Mady replies in an excited voice and Arizona chuckles a laugh, arching an eyebrow as her eyes find Callie's. The taller woman only shrugs with a smile, laughing quietly as she steps toward her wife, nodding her head carefully.
"I'm sorry but have you met your daughter? She's very impossible to say no to. She inherited your eyes and your smile and your pout and she uses all three of them against me! I'm helpless!" Callie whines dramatically and Arizona only laughs with a shake of her head.
"Mady, no fair. You know your Mommy is a push over for pretty girls," Arizona scolds and Mady only smiles that deep, dimple revealing smile. She will be a heart breaker, Arizona knows this without a single doubt in her head but it's not something that she inherited from her. No. The beauty. The grace. The heart. It all came from Calliope. And whether the Latina would admit it or not, their daughter is more like her than any one else.
"Pretty girls like you, Mama?" Mady asks with a bright smile, "because Mommy thinks that you are they pwettiest girl in the whole wide world. Mama loves you beary much, Mama," Callie smiles at her daughter, placing her hand on her head as she shrugs her shoulders when Arizona's icy blue eyes find hers. It's moments like this that she is grateful that she ran in after at Joe's that night, it's moments like this when she wonders how she ever lived without her before.
"Kids. They say the darnedest things," Callie chuckles, leaning down to whisper to her daughter, "reaaaaal smoth, slick. Mommy is definitely going to have to teach you how to flirt when you get older. Flattery gets you everywhere in life, babe." She whispers so only she can hear, placing a kiss upon her cheek as Madelyn laughs in content. Rolling her eyes at the two girls, Arizona reaches down, taking her daughter's hand within her own, the size and the warmth catching her completely off guard at the familiarity of the feeling, the innocence and love of her daughter.
"Okay, well, whatever you Mommy just told you, don't listen to her. And apparently, I'm the bad cop tonight. It is almost eleven o'clock. It is time for bed, young lady!" Arizona scolds but Mady only shakes her head, pulling her hand away as she steps back toward Callie, her eyes fixated upon the taller version of herself.
"No, buts! It's time for bed! Or else, Mommy and I will not be taking you to your Abuela's tomorrow. And if I heard correctly, she has a present for you. Perhaps it's that doll that you have been wanting for so long, huh? Come on, squirt. Time for bed. To bed, I said!" Arizona exclaims, scooping her daughter up in her arms, holding her upside down as the sound of shrieking laughter echoes down the hallway, the shrieking laughter that is the perfect melody to Calliope's ears.
Almost half an hour laughter, the Peds surgeon drags into her bedroom that is now filled with darkness. Stumbling her way to the bed, she collapses in a exasperated sigh next to the beautiful woman with raven black curls who lay in bed beside of her. Twisting her fingers in her hair, she stares blankly at the ceiling, listening to the sound of the evened breathing of her wife. She isn't asleep yet, and without looking at her, she knows that she is studying the features on her face, counting each breath that she takes. This is what she loves about her, about tonight and every other night that she spends with her beautiful wife, the simplicity, the familiarity, the comfort. She loves the way that Callie knows her, everything about her, even when she doesn't know things about herself.
"She's getting big," Arizona sighs, turning in the bed to face the lovely woman beside her. She shifts to rest upon her elbow, her eyes fixated upon Calliope's. She would have never done it, she sighs. She would have never gotten married, never had children with any one else but Calliope. She is her one, she always has been and she regrets that she didn't notice that until the day that Gary Clark threatened to take it away from her.
"Yeah. She's almost three now," Callie replies in a whisper. Gently, their fingers intertwine around one another as Calliope brushes her thumb over Arizona's skin, allowing the sensation to create the chills that dance up her spine. Biting her bottom lip, Arizona only stares at her and Calliope simply stares back, both lost in the moment, lost in one another's eyes. Her blue eyes flicker downward for a moment as she lets out a long sigh before a smile curls upon her lips.
"Calliope..." She begins, her voice trailing off and Calliope listens carefully.
"I know that I didn't want kids. Kids were.. not my thing. Being a Peds surgeon, you watch kids come in with life threatening injuries and diseases that you can't fix. Like tonight, for example. I lost a little girl, a little girl to a cancer that we should have beat. And I have been against having children my whole life but then you came along and you... you changed everything. We got married and we had Madelyn Sophia Torres. Born 4:08pm, six pounds and seven ounces. My life changed that day, for the better. She's my heart and I can't imagine life without you and her. You are such an amazing Mom, she's so lucky to have someone like you. I am so lucky to have someone like you. And now she's almost three and I was thinking that maybe we could..." Arizona doesn't finish, instead she only closes her eyes tightly, fearing the reaction on her wife's face.
"You want to have a baby?" Calliope asks and Arizona opens one eye carefully to find the bright smile upon her face, the smile that takes her breath away every single time. Her lips move but no words escape her until she clears her throat and nods her head.
"I want to have a ba-" But before she can finish, Calliope's lips are colliding hard with her own. A soft moan rumbles in the back of her throat as the Latina straddles her, lifting their intertwined fingers above her head as her bottom lip slips unnoticed under her tongue. After a moment, she pulls away, brushing her nose against Arizona's.
"I wanted to have a baby ever since Mady turned two. But I know how you felt. How nervous you were when I was pregnant. You don't think that I knew that you watched me slept the entire nine months of my pregnancy but I knew. And you don't think that I knew that you kept your hand on my stomach the entire night to feel her, but I did. You didn't sleep the first two weeks of her life, you stayed awake, watching her sleep because you were afraid that she would stop breathing. But I watch you with her, Arizona. Mady loves you so much. She told me today that she wanted to be a doctor like her Mama. She's so proud of you and you... you are so good with her. But I didn't want to be selfish and make you think that I needed another baby to be happy because I have you and Mady and you guys make me so happy and..." Her voice breaks as Arizona's lips press tightly against hers. She smiles against the kiss as Arizona's hand wraps around her neck, twisting the curl within her fingers.
"Will you have another baby with me, Calliope Torres?" Arizona asks and Calliope only smiles.
"I thought you would never ask," She replies in a hushed whisper as she leans down to steal a kiss. As her lips settle against hers, a tiny voice calls out, breaking their moment, the sexiness that she had hoped would soon occur.
"Mommy! Mama! Can I sweep wif you tonight?" Mady asks, wiping her eyes as she clutches to the teddy bear in her arms. Staring up at her wife, Arizona only laughs as Callie groans, rolling her eyes inwardly before she falls away in the bed beside of her, holding up the covers for their daughter. Mady smiles brightly at the acceptance, running as she jumps into the bed, snuggling down in the covers between her two parents. She curls up beside of Calliope, her fingers buried deep into the fabric of her shirt and Arizona watches the two of them with a smile. Calliope plays with the toddler's curls and she can't believe how blessed she truly is to have such two amazingly perfect women in her life.
"Thank you," Arizona whispers, reaching over and taking Calliope's hand within her own, placing it upon Mady's stomach as the young girl sighs happily, her breathing even as the slumber overcomes her, "thank you for giving me this. Thank you for loving me. For loving us." She whispers and Callie smiles at her wife before her eyes flicker down to the mini version of Arizona that sleeps soundly next to her.
"Anytime, baby. Anytime," Callie whispers in a loving smile.
Reviews are always appreciated and are welcomed with a McDreamy 2.0 smile!