The snowstorm had died away soon after Liz had fallen asleep in the hallway where the paramedics had left her. About forty minutes after Athena Donaghy had been born in the elevator between the 20th and 21st floors, the new little family was being taken down to an ambulance and to a hospital a few blocks away.
The following morning, the TGS family was packed into the private hospital room, where Athena was formally introduced to everyone. Jack was proudly showing off his daughter to everyone, recounting the story of her delivery to anyone who would listen. Liz was sitting in her bed, smiling at Jack's earnest approach to fatherhood. She didn't know if she had been like this when Avery had her daughter, but she secretly hoped that he hadn't been like this. She wanted her daughter—their daughter, to be given special treatment by her father. But, considering the events of the night before, Liz suspected that Athena already held a very special place in her father's heart.
That night, Liz and the baby were discharged from the hospital, sent home for the first time in what seemed like ages. Jack had asked Jonathan to gather the baby carrier that had required two months' worth of investigation before anything was selected, and to bring one of the two bags that had somehow been forgotten in the flurry of activity from the night before.
Liz was sitting on the bed, grimacing whenever she had to shift around in her seating position. Athena was lying in between Liz's legs, awake, but looking like she might fall asleep. Jack walked in with the bag and the baby carrier. He placed the bag next to Liz on the bed, carefully avoiding the baby, and set the baby carrier in a corner. "Are you ready to go?" he asked Liz.
Liz nodded and glanced down at the baby on the bed. "I want to get home," she murmured quietly as she rubbed her daughter's foot.
"Well, you will be home for quite some time. You couldn't have picked a better time to destroy elevator carpeting by having a baby… your maternity leave will take you through the rest of the season of TGS, and then you have the summer hiatus. She'll be walking and talking by the time you go back," Jack remarked as he unzipped the bag and pulled out a camera.
"Oh, Jack… no… I look terrible…"
"And you think I just walked off the set of a Vogue photo shoot?" he asked as he turned the camera on and snapped a photo of the baby.
"I look like I just had a baby terrible… you just look… frazzled."
"You're supposed to look like you just had a baby. She's not even twenty-four hours old yet. Smile."
Liz couldn't help but to smile as Jack started snapping photos from various angles. Finally, he put the camera to the side and handed Liz the outfit that they had packed to bring the baby home in. As Liz started dressing the baby, a nurse came into the room. "Okay, Mr. and Mrs. Donaghy… we just have a few last documents for you two to sign. One of which is the birth certificate, which came in to us partially completed, and then the final discharge papers," she explained.
The nurse stood back as Jack took the lead in filling out the paperwork. "Liz?" he asked.
She glanced up at him. "Yeah?"
"What's her middle name?"
"I still really like Elevator Floor…"
"Athena Elevator Floor Donaghy?"
"Sure… what's wrong with that?" Liz asked jokingly. "There won't be anyone else with that name in her class."
"Any other suggestions?" he asked with a sigh.
"Adele. I forgot to suggest it last night."
"Adele? As in Athena Adele Donaghy?"
"Sure. Or… if you aren't too attached to Athena being her first name…Adele Athena Donaghy… nah… I like Athena Adele better. Put Adele down as her middle name," Liz instructed as she finished snapping the onesie onto the baby.
Within half an hour, they were on their way down to the town car that Jack had called up to take them home. He had specifically asked that the car that was taking them home be sanitized and cleaned as perfectly as humanly possible. After buckling in the car seat, Liz and Jack took their places on either side of the baby carrier.
They spent the drive watching their daughter sleep, and by the time they reached the apartment, they were both feeling the exhaustion take them over. The new parents made a beeline for their bedroom, where they had set up a bassinette by their bed. Liz put Athena into the bassinette and then collapsed into the bed. Jack took off her shoes, and by the time he was in bed next to her, she was snoring. He was asleep within two minutes.
And thus began their life as a family.