8 weeks have past since Charlie & Brax's baby daughter Zoey was born. But trying to adjust to living together with a new baby is providing difficult. Charlie is finding it hard to cope with her new family. Will a familiar face bring them all closer together or rip this family apart?

Hello everyone! My name is Steph and this is my 3rd Home and away fan fiction, but I have been writing fan fiction...coming up to around 5 years I think haha. Charlie and Brax are one of my favourite couples and ever though in the show they are gone, they are still very much alive in my heart and in my writing. This fiction is a sequel to one of my early stories called '9 months'. So if you don't get some parts of this you might want to go back and read that first. This story had been in the back of my mind for a while now, ever since I started 9 months actually. This was originally going to be part of the fic but then I decided against it because I felt like some of the themes were similar to another fic I wrote a few years ago. But then last week I decided to ask some readers if they thought a sequel would be good and everyone said yes so I thought ok...time to sit down and think. So for a few days this fic was titled 'sequel to 9 months' but I'm like 'THAT IS HORRIBLE! YOU ARE NOT PUBLISHING THIS!'...so then I thought about the themes and what I want to come from this so I decided 'Life as we know it" would be a suitable name despite how lame it is =/ but ah well...as long as you all enjoy this and tell me what you think! Ok blurb over...get reading and reviewing!
Enjoy all my lovelies xo

Life as we know it

Chapter 1

Brax's point of view

I woke up to a small mumbling sound in the baby monitor on Charlie bedside table. "She's awake…its your turn" Charlie mumbled, half asleep as she took my arms from around her stomach.

"Do I have to? You're the one with the milk" I groaned back. I heard her snuffle a laugh.

"Just go before she starts crying" Charlie pushed me out of bed. I sat up and rubbed my eyes trying to keep myself awake. This had become a routine for me now. Charlie and I would take turns during the night feeding her. Apparently only waking up 3 times during the night was good for a baby…but hell for me.

"Come on Zoey…up we get" I plodded into the nursery and grabbed my wide awake cherub. I slowly changed her before walking out into the kitchen and grabbing some breast milk from the fridge. She made a few little sighs as I put it in the bottle warmer to heat it up. "Hold on bub its coming" I smiled, holding her close to my chest. Her tiny hand was placed on part of my 'Blood and Sand' tattoo as I watched her. "Blood and sand ay? I can tell you now you're mother would not be impressed if you became a river girl…neither would ya Nanna Morag, but shh…we'll keep that between you and I" I smiled, kissing her forehead. The bottle was now done so I sat on the sofa and turned on the tv to keep me company. "You are hungry aren't you bub" I chuckled watching her scoffing down her bottle. She had started to look like Charlie more and more, and I could even see a bit of Ruby in her. She may have looked a lot like a Buckton, but she definitely had that Braxton twinkle in her eye. We had been sending photos up to Mum every week so she could watch her grow and even Uncle Heath had become quite smitten on the new addition to the Braxton clan. Morag was visiting all the time to check up on us and Ruby and Casey were so supportive of having a new baby in the house. Ruby loved the idea of having a little sister and was always happy to take her out while Charlie had a well deserved nap. Charlie had been doing it tough the past couple weeks. She was having trouble sleeping and I knew it was the fear of not connecting to Zoey like she had when Ruby was born. What concerned me even more, was her exercise regime and her obsession to lose the baby weight she'd gained. I mean she had hardly put on anything and she was thin as a stick in the first place. "All done bub" I sat Zoey up and burped her before grabbing a blanket and holding her close to my chest. "Time for bed" I whispered, in her ear before kissing her cheek. She was still wide awake so I decided to sit there until she went to sleep.

"Hey Sleepy heads…wake up" a voice awoke me as I jumped, noticing I was still holding a sleeping Zoey close to me. I turned to find Charlie with the camera in her hand and a huge smile on her face.

"Must have dozed off" I chuckled sitting up.

"Ok well I'm off to the gym..." Charlie started.

"Hold on…I've got to work today" I stood up handing her Zoey.

"I'll come and pick her up after my gym session" She pushed her back to me.

"Charlie…I can't take her to work! I work in a bar…its so unprofessional!" I stated.

"Brax, please. I'll make it up to you tonight" She smiled, before kissing my cheek. The truth was…we hadn't had sex properly since Zoey was conceived. The doctor gave Charlie the all clear when Zoey was 6 weeks old, but every time I initiated something, Charlie backed off.

"Fine…but you're also on feeding duty tomorrow night" I yelled out as she walked out the door. I looked at Zoey who was now wide away and desperate for a feed, change and bath. "Come on bub…its take your kid to work day…again" I sighed taking her into the nursery to get her ready.

I walked into the dinner to grab myself a coffee with Zoey strapped to my chest in the baby carrier. "Aww that's so cute!" Marilyn gushed as soon as I walked in. "What can I get for you Brax?" She asked, eyes completely fixated on Zoey.

"Just a flat white and an espresso thanks" I sighed back.

"Oh rough night with the little one?" She asked concerned.

"Not exactly" I chuckled back, watching Zoey look around.

"Where's Charlie?" Leah walked out of the kitchen.

"That actually something I want to talk to you about" I pointed to the woman then walked into the kitchen. She followed with a concerned look on her face.

"Would you be able to talk to Charlie…something is not right and I just don't know how to bring it up with her. We've never been a couple that shared emotions and I'm just a bit worried about her, that's all ay" I explained to Leah.

"Why, what's up?" Leah was getting worried.

"I have to take Zoey to work with me and I've had to a few times now because I've either woken up and Charlie is gone who knows where, or she's told me she's gone to the gym and just pissed off…she's always at the gym or exercising, and leaves me to handle Zoey…she's both our responsibilities" I groaned.

"Look Brax I think that's something you two need to sort out. I don't want to get involved" Leah looked at me hesitantly.

"Leah please…something is seriously up with her and she won't tell me" I sighed.

"Ok fine…I'll have a chat to her" She smiled before Marilyn walked in.

"Your two coffees" She handed them to me.

"Um Brax…I didn't mean to eavesdrop, but I heard that your taking Zoey to work with you…a bar really isn't an environment for a baby. I'm about to finish my breakfast shift…would you like me to look after her?" She suggested.

"Really? Marilyn, that would be great. Thank you so much! I'll just go get her bag from out of the car!" I felt relieved.

"Hey Mate…seen your Mrs at the gym this morning. She does a tough work out!" Heath commented as I walked into Angelo's.

"Yeah I know and she leaves me stuck with the baby" I shook my head.

"Well where's Zoey now?" He asked confused.

"Marilyn said she'd take her for the day…I couldn't bring her to work again. That's ridiculous!" I got out the books to do some accounts and paper work.

"You left my niece with that basketcase?" Heath was outraged.

"I left my daughter with someone who's going to look after her…unlike her mother at the moment" I mumbled the last part.

"Well man, I'm going to unload the delivery of booze we got downstairs…and it looks like you've got company" Heath made me notice who was coming up the stairs.

"Um why is our daughter with Marilyn and not you? And why didn't you tell me what was going on?" Charlie didn't look impressed.