A/N; Pretty self explanatory. Female!Ronnie
Ronnie couldn't understand Shane's actions, and reactions at the methadone clinic. It was strange. But perhaps, Ronnie had thought as she and Vic had stood in the hallway watching Shane walk mindlessly through the methadone clinic, it was just grief. She was feeling the full effects of it herself, as she knew Vic was. It hadn't even been a week, and there they were. Working.
Ronnie sipped her drink slowly, as she watched Aceveda on the TV. Aceveda, always Aceveda when something bad was happening. She was surprised she wasn't having nightmares about him. She looked down into the whiskey, swishing it around in her cup she thought about Lem. And the last time she had seen him. They were standing beside the car, hugging. She had patted his back as he'd walked away.
And she'd never seen him again.
Ronnie was sitting on her couch, looking at the wall blankly. She couldn't find the focus for her work, and she didn't have the desire to do anything else. She couldn't understand what was wrong with her. And the worse part was that she couldn't even take tomorrow off. She didn't have any more sick days, and only one more personal days.
She was still grieving, Vic told her. Tried to comfort her, but like her with him, they didn't know how to comfort each other. And there was no comfortable way to hold a person that was going through the same kinda of pain as you. So they would sit awkwardly beside each other at the bar, and look at the TV. They would talk, of course. But it was mostly the kind of talk that started with 'Remember that time'.
They were running out of excuses not to cry, but still they tried not to.
Ronnie took her personal day to go out and get her hair cut. To get a manicure, a wax. Whatever she wanted. But it didn't make her feel better. She stood looking in the mirror at home for over twenty minutes, before she had crawled into bed, holding her robe tightly around herself, in a pseudo-hug, while squeezing her eyes shut tightly.
Trying not to cry was harder now then ever before.
Ronnie groaned as she rubbed her eyes slowly, as she took a long sip of her coffee. "I just feel so crappy lately." she told Danny as they stood in the break room, looking out into the barn.
"Well you know, it hasn't been that long." Danny said as she sipped her tea, frowning as she watched Vic and Hiatt rushing through the barn, with Julian trailing after them. Like a little puppy, she thought smiling.
Ronnie nodded as she turned away from the window, stirring her coffee slowly, she looked up at the ceiling. "It feels like something more then that." she murmured as Danny looked at her curiously, "I've been feeling... sick." Ronnie said hesitantly, as if she were almost afraid of what she was saying. Running her fingers through her hair Ronnie stood up straight slowly sighing, "Guess I better go see what we're working on now." she sighed exasperatedly as she turned toward the door.
"Ronnie..." Danny said softly as she turned slowly to look at the other woman, "I know you probably don't need me to be asking this, but..." Danny frowned as she stood up straight, looking down at her coffee as Ronnie turned to look at her, "You and Lem, was that... just, you know, a friendship?" Ronnie could tell by her voice that they both had the same suspicions.
Ronnie frowned as she turned back toward Danny, glancing toward the door she walked over to the other woman, and leaned on the counter by her again, "...For years, yeah. But one night..." she paused to look down, "The night of his stupid party..." she sighed heavily, as she looked up at Danny, "It only lasted a couple of minutes. I... Even without a condom, I don't... I really don't." she murmured as she looked away.
Danny didn't really seem to know what to say as she slowly gazed out into the barn as well. They stood in silence for several moments before Danny looked at her again, and softly whispered, "You need to make sure. What you do... it's a lot harder on a woman then what I do."
Ronnie frowned deeply as she watched Dutch follow Claudette up the stairs, turning toward Danny slowly she nodded, "You know... I kinda want to. I mean... It'd be a part of him, you know?" Danny smiled, and Ronnie knew she understood. "Can, uh, you have lunch with me tomorrow?" Danny knew what she was asking, and she just smiled,
"Yeah, of course Ronnie."
"Oh no, no, no." Ronnie was pacing back and forth in the bathroom of the taco shop she and Danny had chosen to go to.
"Calm down, Ronnie." Danny said as she leaned against the bathroom door, watching Ronnie, "I mean... if you don't want-" Danny frowned as she folded her arms over her chest, looking toward the changing station on the wall, she couldn't even bring herself to finish the sentence. And even if she could... she knew Ronnie would say no. "Isn't this... a good thing? A piece of Lem?" Danny asked softly, encouragingly.
Ronnie paused in the middle of the room to look at Danny, frowning she slowly looked into the mirror, and placed one hand over her stomach, smiling half way she nodded as she covered her hand, slowly, with her free hand, "...A piece of Lem."
"Vic." Ronnie said softly from the doorway of the clubhouse, waving to Danny as the other woman walked past, "I have to talk to you." Hiatt glanced back at her, sitting on the table, and smiled. She knew Kevin was interested in her, he was sending so many smoke signals that she'd learned not to inhale. "Hi Kevin." she murmured, while narrowing her eyes at Shane, as he sat up to the table reading the paper.
"Yeah, okay." Vic said handing Hiatt the football before slapping his shoulder, and approaching Ronnie, Ronnie was sure she saw a flash of fear pass through Shane's eyes. Smiling widely at Shane, she hoped he was scared, as she walked away from the clubhouse with Vic, passing Julian in the hallway.
Pausing by the basket ball hoop, she placed her hands on her hips, and looked at the ground, trying to breathe. She didn't want to tell Vic this, but she felt like she owed it to him. And maybe...
"I'm pregnant, Vic."
"What?" he sounded surprised, and a little angry. "Whose?"
She looked up at him slowly, and smiled, and he could see the tears she refused to let fall glistening in her eyes, "...Lem." she said biting her bottom lip and shaking her head slightly. Vic opened his mouth slightly, as if he wanted to talk, but he ended up laughing, as he moved forward to wrap his arms around her tightly.
Ronnie wrapped her arms tightly around Vic as she buried her face in his shoulder She heard the door open, and glanced up to see Shane standing in the doorway looking out at them. Vic pulled away slowly, wiping his eyes as he looked back at Shane, "Hey, man." Ronnie was sure she physically felt the tension lifting from them, and she didn't forgive Shane, she hated him. And she wanted him dead.
But she had something real to focus on. And in eight months, and one week, she would be holding it in her arms. She didn't care if it was a boy or a girl, but she hoped it was a boy. Because then she could name him after his father.
Vic turned to look at her, and she looked down into his eyes, completely ignoring Shane, as Vic grabbed her shoulders tightly, "I'll help you, in anyway I can. All you have to do is ask, you know that."
"You don't have to help Vic." Ronnie murmured as she wiped her eyes, she knew Vic meant well. And she was glad he was offering, she knew she would probably need his help. But she wasn't too keen on the idea of Shane knowing that she was pregnant.
"I want to Ronnie. We owe him." Vic touched her cheek, and Ronnie felt like crying. She felt the same way Vic did, and she was glad he was going to help.
"I know Vic. I know." she whispered as she looked at the ground.
Shane, having long since closed the door and walked over to them, stood awkwardly with his hands in his pockets, as he watched them, "Uh, what are you guys talkin' about, now?" he asked slowly.
Vic glanced at him, and then back at Ronnie, mouthing 'It's okay.', he turned to look at Shane, and smiled as he wiped his eyes, "Ronnie..." he choked slightly and looked at Ronnie.
"Lem and I had sex before he ran." she said putting emphasis the word 'sex', as she looked at Shane, placing a hand on her stomach softly.
The look on Shane's face made the past week seem pointless. All of the hurt, all of the suffering, all of the betrayal, flashed through his eyes in an instant. And Ronnie swore he was going to cry, as he slowly raised a hand to his mouth, "Oh man." his voice was quiet, and she knew he felt like eating his gun. "I..." Ronnie and Vic exchanged looks slowly, "I'm so sorry, guys." Shane said as he dropped his hand to his side, and she noticed his nose was turning red, he was trying so hard not to cry. "D-do you... need anything?"
Ronnie tried to smile, tried to say something, but all that came out was a choked sob. And she covered her face with her hands slowly, she heard Shane put his hand on the fence, as Vic wrapped her in a hug.
"I'm so sorry." Shane said weakly as he looked at the ground. He knew they didn't understand, and he didn't know how long it would take them to understand, if they ever could understand. "I... I thought-" he stopped to look at Ronnie, as she clutched the front of Vic's shirt tightly, and looked at him through tears. "I didn't know." Shane choked out as he punched the wall, turning and slamming his back into it, he covered his face with his hands as he slid down the wall. "I'm so sorry, Lem." he hissed as he looked up at the sky.
Vic looked at her, and she knew without him saying what he was asking. She didn't want to, she didn't believe it. She hated Shane. And always would. But when Vic pulled away to go and kneel in front of Shane, she let him. She listened quietly as Vic tried to explain to him that it was okay, but she wanted to hit something. When Shane looked to her slowly, for confirmation, she swallowed as she wiped her eyes, and nodded.
Ronnie closed her eyes as she turned away. Walking back into the barn felt like a mistake, but pretending to forgive Shane felt like she was being stabbed in the heart. Lem had been her best friend, and Shane had taken him away from her.
Ronnie walked into the clubhouse, ignoring Kevin when he said hi, again. And went to her locker, opening it she peered inside, frowning. She wasn't sure what she wanted to do in here, but she knew she couldn't go off gallivanting across the city, without a reason. Or a case to work.
"Listen Ronnie, I was thinking-"
"Not now, Kevin." Ronnie said as she checked her holster. She couldn't understand what Kevin saw in her. She wasn't the prettiest girl in the barn (Tina had that covered). She definitely wasn't as well endowed as some of the other women. Maybe it was just because she was so disinterested, she mused.
"Oh hey now, at least give me a chance to say it." Kevin laughed as he tossed the football to an obviously disapproving Julian. "I was just thinking... Maybe we could grab a beer after work, or-"
"I said no, Kevin!" Ronnie snapped turning to look at him, "No. I'm not interested, alright?" Kevin sneered and Ronnie assumed she was probably the only woman to ever turn him down. She raised her hand to cover her mouth, "Just leave it alone." she hissed turning back to her locker.
"Whoa. I wasn't trying to upset you, Ronnie. I just-" Kevin shrugged, "Kinda like you is all."
Ronnie put her hand on the edge of her locker as she looked down at the floor, "Well, you know what..." she said looking up in time to see Vic reenter the room, "I don't like you." Ronnie said as she placed her hands on her hips, and turned slowly to face him, "Not even kinda." she challenged, furrowing her brow.
Kevin looked really surprised, and taken aback, as he raised a hand to run it through his hair, and she involuntarily thought of Lem. "You're just not... right for me. Not even right for right now." she said raising her hands as she looked at him, perfectly aware that he was supposed to be taking over the Strike Team soon. Yet not caring. Because he could only spin insubordination if it was under a direct command that she said no.
"Ronnie what's going on?" Vic asked slowly, as he looked at Julian.
"Tell Kevin, since he has trouble hearing me say it, that I'm just not interested, Vic." Ronnie said as she walked past Vic to stand in the hall, where she hesitantly began to pace.
"Kevin what, uh, what's going on?" Vic asked as he slowly approached the other man, looking at him curiously.
"I dunno! I asked her out and she just..." Kevin motioned after Ronnie, "Freaked out."
Vic shook his head, sighing as he looked to the floor, "She just got some very stressful information. She'll calm down soon." he assured Kevin. They both looked up when Claudette knocked on the door frame, motioning Kevin out,
"I need to see you Hiatt."
"I've been drinking, Vic." Ronnie said nervously as she and Vic stood in the middle of her living room.
Vic ran his hand over his head nervously as he turned away, obviously thinking. "What if my baby has Fetal Alcohol Syndrome?" Ronnie asked nervously, and Vic turned to see her twisting the edge of her shirt between her fingers, "What will happen then?" she raised her hands slightly, and Vic wondered if she was going to freak out. "What am I gonna do, Vic?" Ronnie asked nervously, and Vic realized that Ronnie needed him more then she'd initially let on.
"He's gonna be fine." Vic assured her as he grabbed her shoulders, "Ronnie. It's going to be fine. Just... sit down. I'll get you some water." he said as he went into the kitchen. He knew Ronnie, she liked to drink, but she wasn't an alcoholic. But he also knew that she probably had some beer in the kitchen, maybe some whiskey too.
He would, he decided, just take all of the temptation away, and then Ronnie would be fine. And their little piece of Lem would be fine. He realized he was shaking as he filled the glass of water up. What if the baby was already affected? Vic sighed as he gripped the edge of the sink, he couldn't think like that. He just couldn't.
The baby was fine. The baby would be fine. It would be a strong, happy, healthy little boy.
Vic looked up at the wall, and tried to imagine what Lem would say if he was here. He would probably be making Ronnie take it easy, Vic concluded. Making her sit back with her feet up, waiting on her hand and foot. Taking care of her every want and need.
Lem was selfless like that.
Vic decided, as he turned the water off, that he would just have to try and be as selfless as Lem had been, to help Ronnie get through this.
"You're... you're transferring off of the team?" Vic sounded so devastated that Ronnie regretted even considering it.
"No. Not if... Not if you don't want me to." she said frowning, and Vic realized that it was in her best interests to leave the team, "I didn't think you would mind though, Vic."
"You mean cause they're pushing me out?" Vic asked as he wiped his mouth, looking out over the barn parking lot.
"Well, yeah. I mean, that only leaves me, Julian, Shane, and Kevin. You honestly think Claudette is going to approve new members?"
"Good point." Vic grumbled as he slipped his sunglasses on. "It makes sense, I guess." he frowned as he looked at Ronnie again, "But do you really think that she's going to disband the team, if there are four guys?
Ronnie smiled as she leaned on the wall heavily, "I dunno, probably not. But do you think she's gonna keep Kevin?"
"Yeah." Vic said looking at the ground, "But I can't blame you if you want to get away from Shane."
"... Thanks, Vic."
Ronnie felt like she couldn't breathe, as she stood looking at the wall. Shane's words were still ringing in her head; 'If you're leaving, then I'm staying'. She had to get out of here. "Vic, I..."
"Ronnie, I know." Vic said holding his hand up to stop her, "There's still time."
"What are we going to do about him?" Ronnie asked as she dragged her chair out, sitting down slowly, "I can't stay if he stays."
"We'll deal with it, Ronnie." Vic said reaching over and lightly gripping her shoulder, "We'll be fine."
Ronnie looked up as the door opened, Kevin seemed agitated. She considered asking if he was okay, but hesitantly turned back to her paper work. But Kevin's annoyed sigh, and the slamming locker door made her look up again. "Kevin, about the other day... I'm uh, I'm sorry."
"Doesn't matter now." Kevin said as he turned toward her, "Didn't you hear yet? I mean gossip seems to travel fast in this place."
"...hear what?" Ronnie asked as she set the pen down, frowning at Hiatt.
"I just got let go." Kevin said exasperatedly.
"Oh." Ronnie said frowning as she looked away.
"Claudette put me in charge of the Strike Team." Ronnie said as she paused behind Vic in the hallway. Vic frowned as he looked back at Ronnie, she looked disappointed.
"That's good though, Ronnie." Vic said as he turned to face her, "Isn't it?"
"Not with Shane around." she hissed as she took a step closer to Vic, looking down the hall toward Shane as he stood at the computers, looking something up. Again.
"We'll deal with that." Vic assured her as he patted her arm, "Soon."
Ronnie rubbed her eyes as she sat up to Vic's kitchen table, across from Vic. He had actually been fired. She couldn't believe this. "Claudette disbanded the Strike Team." she said as she slowly looked up at him.
"Oh yeah?" he seemed surprised as he sipped his beer, looking at the wall just over her shoulder. He wouldn't look her in the eyes, and she understood he was upset, but it hadn't been her fault.
"God, I could really use a beer." she mumbled as she rested her chin in her hand and just sat looking at him, he finally looked at her, and she just smiled.
"Ronnie." he said firmly as he sat up, and it reminded her of their first days together, the first time they'd met. She had always felt like a child around Vic, it was strange how he seemed to have that effect on people. "That's not funny."
"This is one of the last pieces of Lem we have." Vic said as he reached across the table to cover her hand with his.
"Vic... I-" she shook her head slightly, "I've been meaning to ask you something, it's... it's not a little favor, either."
"What Ronnie?" Vic asked as he sat up, a look of concern plastered across his face.
"You wanna maybe... get a place with me? I mean... just until-" she sat up to slowly touch her stomach, "I know what to do, and all of that. I'll be needing a bigger place anyway, and you can stay in the spare bedroom until..."
Vic opened his mouth as he sat up slowly, pulling his hand back across the table as he did so.
"I'm not trying to make you uncomfortable. By all means, feel free to say no." Ronnie said quickly, "I mean, I understand that you have your own kids and everything. I just thought..." she smiled weakly as she folded her arms across her stomach in a pseudo-hug, "You know, a little Lemonhead."
Vic sighed heavily as he dragged a hand down over his mouth, "Yeah. Yeah, I think I'd like that." he said as he looked at the wall. "...you're not transferring out of city, right?"
Ronnie leaned back in her seat and looked up at the ceiling, "...No. No, I think I can stand to see Shane, as long as he isn't on my team, you know? Besides, I couldn't ask you to leave your kids so far behind."
"Hey, lets get a place with a few bed rooms. Cassidy will need one on the weekends."
Ronnie smiled softly as she sat looking at Vic, "Of course." she said rubbing her stomach slightly. "...I'm scared."
"Me too." Vic admitted as he looked down at his beer, and began pulling the label off. Ronnie knew full well they were talking about different things, but she took the statement at face value.
Ronnie didn't know why she wasn't going to the hospital. She knew she needed to. It'd been nearly ten weeks since her last ultrasound, and she knew she was taking a high risk not going, and Vic was practically on his knees begging her to go every morning. And nearly every afternoon when he brought her lunch.
Claudette had partnered her with Dutch, which had really surprised Billings. She had offered to take someone else as a partner, or fly solo (which she would have preferred), but Claudette had taken her aside and explained to her that she needed a competent partner for Dutch, and Billings just wasn't challenging him enough.
It annoyed Ronnie when people would throw it in her face that 'since her boyfriend had gotten thrown out' the brutality complaints had gone down, but she usually just smiled and shrugged. Or ignored them.
"Hey Danny." Ronnie said as she walked into the break room, putting a hand on the small of her back, propping her self up on the counter with her other hand.
"Jesus Ronnie, you're getting huge." Danny said as she stood up, "Uh, no offense or anything."
Ronnie laughed shaking her head, "I know I am."
"Here, sit down for a minute." Danny said pulling a chair out for her, Ronnie sat down slowly, thanking Danny as she did so, "So, is it a girl, or a little Lem?" Danny asked as she sat down beside Ronnie.
Ronnie smiled softly, she was actually glad she had told Danny. It was nice to have someone to talk to about it, especially someone that knew, and understood. "Actually... I don't know yet. I'm waiting for Vic to come in, he's going to take me to lunch. Then we're going over to the hospital, he doesn't know yet." Ronnie said as she brushed a strand of hair back.
"Oh, you need a head band, if you're growing your hair out." Danny said off-handedly. "Oh. Hey, can you bring some pictures back with you? I'd love to see them." she said smiling.
"Of course, Danny." Ronnie said pressing the other woman's hand lightly. Hearing a commotion in the main area they glanced back to see Vic horsing around with some of the guys on the squad, "Hey I heard you're trying for detective?"
"Oh yeah, I thought I'd give it a try."
"You'll pass." Ronnie said winking as she stood slowly, just as Vic and Cassidy walked in. "Oh, you brought Cassidy?"
"Yeah, Corrine had some stuff to do with Matty and Megan. You don't mind right?"
"No, not at all." Ronnie said waving at Danny, "I'll see you later, Danny."
Ronnie was relieved that Cassidy waited until they were outside to accusingly ask a question she'd obviously had on mind for a while now. As they approached the car (Ronnie's car. She let Vic use it, since Dutch would drive her around for case work, and other wise she didn't have any reason to leave the station), Cassidy turned to her and asked, "Is that my dads baby?"
"Cassidy!" Vic exclaimed, turning to look at her, obviously shocked.
"I was wondering when you were going to ask that." Ronnie said as she paused to let Cassidy climb into the back seat, "But no, no it isn't."
"Whose is it then?" Cassidy asked, and Vic shot Ronnie an apologetic look before they climbed into the car.
"Actually, the father was a friend of ours." Ronnie said motioning between herself and Vic. Opening the glovebox she took a picture out, that was folded in half, and handed it to Cassidy as Vic turned the car on, "Him." Ronnie said tapping on the picture, to indicate Lem, once Cassidy had unfolded it. "Your dad is just helping me out, cause I've never had a baby around before. And I can tell that he raises them well." she said smiling at Cassidy, who blushed slightly.
Ronnie patted Vic's arm softly, as he beamed, "Mission Cross, Vic."
"Why? What happened? Are you okay?" Vic sounded so scared that Ronnie almost laughed.
"I scheduled an ultrasound." she said smiling.
Vic looked at her, surprised as they pulled out, and she could tell that he was relieved, because she'd saved him another afternoon of asking. "Okay." he said smiling, as he glanced back at Cassidy, "You okay with that kiddo?"
"Will we get to see if the baby is a boy or a girl?" Cassidy asked as she leaned back in her seat.
"Yeah, we will." Ronnie said as she shifted to get more comfortable in her seat.
Ronnie couldn't explain why she was so happy. Why she felt so ecstatic. But she was shaking, as she walked back into the barn, looking the ultrasound pictures over again. She went to her desk slowly, pausing she slipped them into the envelope she was carrying, and looked up at Dutch as he approached her, reading a case file. "Hey Dutchboy." she said as she put a hand on the small of her back, and stood up straight.
Dutch sighed as he looked up at her, frowning, "Claudette wants to talk to us together about this case." he muttered handing her the file, before he began to walk over to Claudette.
Ronnie grinned as she watched him walking away, she enjoyed picking on him sometimes. It relieved a little of her preliminary stress. Walking after Dutch she began to read the case files, pausing behind him, she sat on the edge of his desk as he flopped down into his chair. Glancing up she saw Danny walking past, "Danny." she called, tossing the other woman the envelope, "Lemonhead." she said grinning as she opened her arms, not minding when the folder hit Dutch in the back of the head, and shrugging.
Danny opened her mouth slightly as she smiled, "That's great Ronnie! Hey, you wanna come over to my place for dinner tonight? We can talk about a few things that, trust me, you're really gonna wanna know."
"Yeah, of course. I'll see you around...?"
"Oh, just eight, or whenever." Danny said waving her hand before she began to walk away.
"Okay." Ronnie said waving, "Oh hey, thank you." she called, before slowly looking at Dutch "...what?"
"What did you mean?" Dutch asked slowly, "Lemonhead?"
"Just a gag between me and Danny." Ronnie said looking up at Claudette, she knew Claudette, who'd been around when they'd refereed to Lem as Lemonhead, knew what it meant, but the other woman remained silent.
"Hey Ronnie!" Shane called as he walked over so quickly she didn't have a chance to get ghost.
"Hey Shane." she said exasperatedly as she passed the file to Claudette, "Can I take a minute?"
"Take five." Claudette said smiling knowingly at her, and Ronnie nodded slightly as she stood up, and motioned Shane to follow her, walking back to her desk, she frowned at Shane as he puffed his cigarette nervously.
"What's up?" she asked as Shane grabbed her arm and led her to the old clubhouse, which was, much to her disgust, being used as a store room for the files. Closing the door behind them he ran his fingers through his hair, "How's the baby?"
"Uh fine. Active, and really, really strong." Ronnie said rubbing her stomach slightly, she frowned.
"Good, that's good."
"You look kinda... shaken. What's-" Ronnie groaned slightly as she put her hands on either side of her stomach, "He kicks when you talk." she observed. "Do you need something, Shane?"
"He? It's a boy?" Shane seemed so happy that she was taken aback. But the tears that suddenly sprang to his eyes surprised her more, "Can... can I feel?" he sounded so desperate she could only nod dumbly. Shane smiled, and seemed a bit relieved as he knelt in front of her, putting a hand gently on her stomach, "Hey baby." he whispered, pressing his cheek against her stomach. He grinned when the baby kicked, after a moment, and looked up at Ronnie, "I-I felt it."
"Yeah, like I said, he's really strong." she said rubbing the side of her stomach slowly, in a circular motion. "But uh, there was something you wanted?" she asked hoping he would just get on with it.
Shane smiled as he kissed her stomach, thoroughly surprising her, "Hey... You're gonna grow up to be like your daddy, ain't ya?" he cooed petting her stomach, and Ronnie felt bad for Shane against her better judgement. Because Lem had been Shane's friend too. But Shane had killed him.
Shane licked his lips as he stood slowly, "Yeah. I... Can I come over this weekend? I really needa talk to Vic."
Ronnie frowned slightly, "...I guess." she murmured as she looked down.
"I-I'll bring Mara. She's pregnant too, you know? Almost due but, heh, she'd like to tell you a few things. I-if you want to talk to her." Ronnie looked up at Shane slowly, she knew he was in trouble, she just didn't know what kind of trouble. And she knew that right now she wouldn't be able to look into it, but Vic still could.
"Yeah. We'll do a barbeque. I'm sure she'll enjoy it." Ronnie said, putting special emphasis on 'barbeque'. "The house I'm buying has a pool out back, you know?" she said raising her eyebrows, and Shane nodded slowly, and she knew he got the point. "Just come over Saturday around twelve. I gotta go work on my case, now." she said softly, glad when he opened the door for her.
"Hey Ronnie." Shane said when she was walking away, pausing Ronnie looked back at him, "Thank you." he whispered. Ronnie looked at him for a moment before slowly walking away.
Vic seemed a little on edge Saturday, and Ronnie could understand why, though it had been Vic who had tried to get her to make up with Shane to begin with. Ronnie was glad she'd had a chance to invite Corrine, and Danny, though. It made the day a lot calmer, Shane and Mara however, seemed shocked to see them there.
Ronnie was sitting on the edge of the pool with Danny, playing with Danny and Vic's son Lee, when Vic approached her, tapping her shoulder lightly as he squatted behind her, "Shane wants to know if you can come show him the house?" she knew that just meant that Shane wanted to talk to them alone, and she was annoyed.
"Yeah." she forced herself to say as she handed Danny Lee, "I'll be back soon." she said as Vic helped her up, to make sure she didn't slip. "Hey Vic, you remember Tavon?" she asked as they approached Shane (she made sure Shane heard her).
Vic grunted as he nodded, "Yeah, why?"
"He called me this morning." she said as Vic handed her a robe, pulling it on she waved at Mara, who was Walking Jackson around the yard.
"Oh yeah?" Vic asked as they walked into the house.
"Yeah, I told him he could come over today. To see-" she rubbed her stomach slowly, "Lemonhead."
"Tavon, huh?" Shane asked as they walked into the kitchen.
"Yeah, I didn't tell him I was pregnant. Just told him I had something special Lem left me. He asked to see it, I said today was good." Ronnie said casually as she walked to the fridge, getting a coke she came to sit up to the table.
"What do you need now, Shane?" Vic asked, suddenly not in the mood to dance around the subject.
Shane sat up to the table slowly, and ran a hand through his hair. "I... I need help Vic. I need Vic kinda help." he said desperately, as he looked up at Vic, "Strike team help."
"With what?" Vic asked as he and Ronnie exchanged glances.
"I wonder what they're talking about." Mara said as she joined Corrine by the side of the pool, and helping Jackson into it.
"Who knows with them? Probably sports." she said laughingly. Sipping her iced tea slowly she looked over at the gate, "Who is that?" she asked as she pointed to Tavon, who was waving from the gate.
Mara narrowed her eyes as she looked to the gate, "...he was on the Strike Team for a while." she said looking at Corrine, "Can you go see why he's here? We have a bad history." she said smiling weakly.
Corrine raised her eye brows before smirking and nodding, "Sure thing, Mara." she said patting the woman's shoulder before walking to the gate to speak with Tavon.
"Jesus Shane!" Ronnie snapped, barely able to contain her angry, "How'd this happen?" Vic sighed heavily as he ran a hand over his head, turning away from them.
"I-I don't know." Shane sounded near hysterical as he rubbed his knuckles against the palm of his hand. "I just needed a little extra money, you know? Another kid coming... and with everything going on."
"Shane that's no excuse! I'm not out there pedaling drugs!" Ronnie screamed standing up abruptly, and slamming her hands onto the tabletop.
"Calm down Ronnie." Vic said putting a hand on her shoulder. "Shane-" he sighed again as he looked at the other man, "This is a little messed up."
"It's nothing we haven't done before." Shane said softly.
"We've never been greenlit for doing it though." Vic pointed out as he rubbed Ronnie's shoulder slowly.
"Ronnie?" Tavon called from the other room, "You in here?"
Ronnie sneered as she looked at the door, slowly turning her attention to Vic she glared at him, "Try to come up with a plan. I'm going to speak with Tavon." she said as she tied her robe shut and started out of the room.
"Th-thank you guys." Shane said as he looked toward Ronnie, who just stared at him pitifully, before walking out.
Ronnie paused as she came out of the room, standing looking at Tavon's back as he looked at the picture of The Strike Team she and Vic had framed and hung up. She knew he had to have missed Lem, still, otherwise he wouldn't have called. Walking over slowly she put a hand on his arm, he tensed but didn't flip around. "Hi Tavon." she said softly.
"Hi." he said as he slowly tuned away from the photo to look at her, "Whoa! What's this?" he asked motioning at her, "How far along are you?" he asked as he slowly reached toward her stomach.
"Uh, well you know... about seventeen weeks. And uh, four days." Ronnie said pulling the robe open. Tavon looked surprised so she smiled, "It's the special thing Lem left me." she whispered as he gently touched her stomach, "My little Lemonhead." she said laughing as she rubbed the side of her stomach.
"Oh God, tell me you aren't cruel enough to actually name the poor boy Lemonhead." Tavon asked laughing.
Ronnie grinned, shaking her head slightly. "I dunno what to name him." she said softly, as she looked at the picture of Lem, "...I never talked to Lem about what he would name his kids, so I'm not sure what he'd want me to name him."
"Lem and I talked about having kids once." Tavon said leading Ronnie to the couch and sitting with her, "Funny thing is, the woman he talked about having kids with, he never told me who she was, but I always had a feeling it was you he was talking about." Tavon said as he rubbed her shoulder softly.
Ronnie sighed as she leaned against Tavon, resting her head against his shoulder. "I still miss him." Ronnie whispered as Tavon wrapped his arm around her. "I... think I was in love with him."
"I think he might have been in love with you, too." Tavon said softly as he stroked her hair. Ronnie closed her eyes as she wrapped her arms around Tavon's midsection, pressing her face against his chest, she tried to choke back the sob she knew as coming as he wrapped his arms around her, holding her tightly. "He would be happy, and proud." Tavon said as he rubbed Ronnie's back, and she finally stopped looking for a reason not to cry.
Ronnie frowned as she looked through the baby name book, while Vic stood behind the couch and read it over her shoulder. She was almost due, and she hadn't even considered a name for the baby, until breakfast, when Vic had asked her if she planned on naming the baby or not.
Sighing heavily she closed the book and rested her head against the back of the couch, looking up at Vic. "I can't concentrate on this, right now." she said as she tossed the book to the side.
"You don't like any of the ones we read, then?" Vic asked as he leaned on the back of the couch, frowning at her.
"No, not really." she said as she rested her hands on her stomach and shifted lower in her seat.
"You know... that baby is going to be huge." Vic said as he leaned forward, placing his hand on her stomach softly as he did so. "And hyper." he said happily as he smiled at her.
Ronnie smiled at Vic and nodded, "Yeah... like his Dad." she said softly, sighing.
Vic had been right about the baby being big. And Ronnie had felt like she was being torn in half, it had hurt to the point that she had almost quit and asked for a C-section, but Corrine was one of her nurses, and helped her through it. Since Vic wasn't actually family he hadn't been allowed in the room, and even Corrine had seemed a little apologetic about it.
Ronnie felt like she'd been going to die from the pain, but when they handed her her son, with a little mess of blond hair (flipping up in the front, as if he had some sort of cowlick. And she wondered silently if it ran in Lem's family), and the brightest, bluest eyes she'd ever seen on a baby, everything was alright. Even when she started crying, and Corrine started crying, it was alright. After Corrine excused herself to leave Ronnie alone with her son for a few moments, Ronnie tried to calm herself a little.
Sitting up slightly she stroked her sons head as he laid in her arms, looking up at her. Ronnie smiled, trying not to start crying again she raised the baby to kiss the top of his head, before looking at the ceiling, and closing her eyes. 'He's so beautiful.' she thought, 'He looks just like you.'
Ronnie wished more then anything that Lem could see his son.
"He's so beautiful, Ronnie." Shane said as he leaned over the crib and looked in at the baby.
"Watch." Ronnie said as she picked the baby up, taking the bottle from Vic she checked the temperature, and started feeding him. "He has dimples like Lem did." she murmured as Vic stroked his head.
"What's his name?" Tavon asked as he stepped a little closer, "...he really does look like Lem." he observed.
"Gardocki, or?" Tavon asked as he slowly looked up at Ronnie.
"... Gardocki. Lem and I weren't an item. We just had sex the one time." She said as she looked up at Tavon, "I listed him as the father, though." she said shrugging.
"C-can I hold him?" Shane asked cautiously, Tavon seemed surprised by Shane's tone, turning to look at the other man he raised his eyebrows;
"Why wouldn't she let you? You're her boy." he said shrugging, "Right?" Shane looked at Tavon slowly, and then back to Ronnie, questioningly.
Ronnie frowned, looking at Vic for a moment, and the silence seemed to be making Shane, and Tavon, nervous. But when Ronnie slowly turned back to Shane, the hopeful look on his face broke her heart, "...Right." she said smiling as she stepped closer to Shane, "You can hold him, you are after all, one of the closest things to an uncle he has."
Vic laughed as he patted Shane on the back, smiling widely at him, "Yeah, he's our boy."