A/N: So, I've been a HUGE ATW fan ever since the pilot, but had always been kinda afraid to try a fic. Until now. Last night aired "Countdown to Meltdown", one of the most emotionally intense episodes yet. And I couldn't resist having my way with the Don/Sheila dynamic. That said, please be nice, and enjoy.
Disclaimer: WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS. Also, I am in no way associated with Against the Wall. If I was, it would have already been picked up for a second season! =0)
"You don't need a wife or a kid right now!" He sighed. "You're right, Sheila, I don't need any of that. But I want it. I want you…" PRE-ATW, oodles of Don/Sheila.
"Congratulations, it's a perfectly healthy baby boy," the attending nurse crowed as she placed the squalling newborn in his mother's arms.
A boy? Instantly, the tears began to course down Sheila Joyceski's face; but whether they were tears of fear, joy, sadness, or a combination of all of these, suddenly became irrelevant. Now she was a mother, and had someone else to watch out for.
"Don't cry, sweetheart," she whispered, "Momma's here." And slowly but surely, he quieted. For a moment, she cursed Speedo for walking out on her, but seconds later, a voice broke through her thoughts.
"Hey." Don Kowalski was leaning against the door frame, grinning at her. They'd been seeing each other for a little over two months, and he'd already proposed, but she'd refused, much to his disappointment. So to see him here now was a pleasant surprise.
"Hey yourself," she answered, trying to get a grip on all of the emotions that were running rampant within her.
"I heard you were in the hospital, and I thought these would make you smile." He gave her the flowers, winking at her. Unable to resist, Sheila smiled. "See, it worked."
"Thank you." Don peered down at the baby she was holding.
"Yes, he is." He took her hand in his.
"Just like his mother." Sheila felt the blush creep across her cheeks.
"Oh, stop…I must look awful." Don shook his head.
"On the contrary, I've never seen a prettier woman. And pretty women deserve pretty things." The instant she saw the ring, Sheila felt the breath leave her. Why did he keep doing this? It was silent for what seemed like ages. Don finally broke the silence. "So will you marry me?" Sheila stared at the ring, then down at her sleeping little boy.
"I…" What could she say? Where were the words? The last two months had been wonderful, and she really did love him, but she couldn't ask such a strong, attractive, otherwise completely unattached young man for such a sacrifice-not for her sake. Finally, she found her voice.
"Don, you…you have everything in the world going for you. You wanna be a police officer, for Christ's sake! You don't need a wife and a kid right now!" Again, silence. Then he sighed, heavily.
"You're right, Sheila. I don't need any of that. But I want it. I want you." The intensity in his dark eyes told her he was serious. And still, Sheila remained mute as he walked back toward the door. "You know I could never love anyone else as much… Just…just think about it, okay?" And then, he was gone.
The self-loathing kicked in right away as it dawned on Sheila that she may very well not see this man who had treated her better than anyone else ever had, again. And if she didn't, she would know why.
Hours later, Sheila was resting-deservedly, after the emotions of the day. A sudden knock at the hospital room door startled her awake. Reflexively, she looked at the incubator sitting a few feet away, and was relieved to find that her son was still napping.
We need to find you a name, little one, she thought, but heard herself say, "Come in." Don was back.
"Busy?" he asked. Sheila allowed herself a giggle.
"Oh, extremely." He came inside, and sat down on the edge of the bed.
"So, I talked to Speedo." Straightforward, Don figured, was the best way to go about it. She froze.
"You did what?"
"And he agreed to sign over his parental rights, which would mean that we could draw up the adoption papers whenever you wanted. That is, of course…if you wanted to, you know, marry me." The woman could scarcely believe what she was hearing. It was almost too much.
"Yes! I-I mean, of course I will. God, I love you." The kiss that followed was passionate, a final seal to the promise that had been made. Suddenly, the baby started fussing. The man carefully picked the child up.
"Hey, little buddy," he said. "It's okay, Daddy's gotcha." The words reached to the deepest part of Sheila's soul, making her feel as though her heart might burst with happiness.
"Don," she said.
"Hm?" Her fiancée never once took his eyes off of the baby in his arms.
"I was thinking that's what I'd name him…Donald Kowalski Jr. That way, it's like he's already yours. "
"Babe, he was mine two months ago. And anyway, I don't think Speedo Jr. has quite the right ring to it." They laughed. Gradually, the woman became tired, and began to doze off. And as she slept, Don was left alone with his newborn son, silently thanking whatever higher power would listen for what was now his.
And there we have it. Go ahead and tell me whatcha think Reviews are like cake! ;)