A/N: I want to get this fic wrapped up pretty quickly because I'm hoping to start another Gwevin fic, so I'll be updating this a lot, hopefully, and finishing off "Kevlie Difference" within a week or two if I find the time and drive. Anyways, this is still rifting off of the Counting Crows album "Recovering the Satellites" which is one of my favorite albums by this band and is totally Kevin. So here goes the fic to the song "Monkey". As always, better to listen to the song while reading.

Disclaimer: I do not own the inspiration for this fic nor any of the characters involved.


Everything is soft around me. The light, the couch, the air, the sounds. I'm breathing lightly and the weight on my chest feels like nothing these days as stress floats away every single day when I get home so I can have moments like this.

Things were so bad before. It was all chaos and madness, every day being another battle that the three of us just struggled to get through. And now we're living the good life, watching Plumbers fight off anything too menial, and Ben only goes in as the big guns. We were just kids before and now it's all real and it doesn't feel like it's a game or a job anymore. It's just life, melting into the background like slightly less crappy elevator music.

And today, we're here. And I'm on the couch, watching the front door, waiting for Gwen to get home while I just sit and breathe. Breathe. And I feel light. And I feel like nothing's going to bother me. The world could end tomorrow, but today's okay. Today's good.

Today, Gwen will come home in roughly five minutes or so and she'll take the little monkey off to the park with Zed and it'll all be okay. And I'll be alone again for a little while, even though I feel alone right now. It's a good kind of alone, not like before. Not like the spiraling downfall of watching myself descend into psychosis and self-loathing.

Today is good.

One hand brushes across Zed's head and her tail makes a light thumping on the ground, but the rest of her doesn't move. She almost seems to gargle a bit, but who cares? Alien dogs are weird. She's such a good girl even at this gray age of hers. What a weird animal. I have no complaints.

My other hand keeps a hold on our little monkey to make sure he doesn't tumble off of my chest as I breathe and he breathes and feeling him there is a comfort in itself. Any fear of being a father has been eliminated by this point because he's a good kid. This far, anyways. Eight months isn't exactly a good way to judge how good your kid's gonna be in the future but he's good so far. And quiet. We've been quiet like this for over an hour now. And he's just been asleep.

He's really done a lot for me. Hell, Gwen's done a lot for me. Pulling me back down. Into reality. Showing me that the world can be a good place for good things. Good things like this. I almost laugh but instead just smile and keep a hand on Devlin.

It started in college. I wasn't all that great. Life happens. I always seem to take a turn for the worse whenever any kind of turn is inevitable. Gwen almost lost me again, and I had to be roped back down from the stars, back to my girlfriend, back to my dog, back to my life. Self-destruction is a habit that's hard to break.

And so while I was trying to wreak havoc on a world that wouldn't pay me for dealing their weapons, Gwen was back here, stressing about finals and Zed and bills and pregnancy and me. And she roped me back in without even telling me that. And that was all before the miscarriage.

I came home from illegal work to get back with my girlfriend, to be loyal and honest with her. And she'd told me that she was pregnant as soon as I was back, not to keep me there, but because she knew I wouldn't leave again. Trust. Forgiveness.

Part of the beauty of coming home is being able to come home to someone that you know has a way of forgiving every mistake even though they shouldn't. But Gwen always does. She does without fail. I've sworn a hundred promises to never leave again, to never scare her like that again, to keep her safe for the rest of our lives. And I've broken all of those minimum five times each. And she gets angry. She can be angry all she wants; she will never reject me when I come home.

But then, it was only a few months in when we found out she'd miscarried. Which was an entirely enveloping experience for the both of us, which involved dozens of nights spent holding her crying or her holding me while I cried. It was just a lot of crying. Zed slept in bed with us for the longest time just for the comfort of knowing we weren't alone together.

Still, it was an experience that reminded me that I was here to stay. To support her as a boyfriend. Then as a husband. And always as a best friend. After the wedding, I knew I'd never leave her again. I've gone off on "business" a few times to take care of some punks or to take care of personal things that she doesn't need to know about, but I'm a good man. I'm a loyal husband. And I'm humble as hell.

And so when she told me she was pregnant with this little tike, our little monkey, this little shit that kept us up for practically three months straight, that was another experience of screaming at each other half the time. That phrase that people say? "You argue like a married couple"? That phrase is entirely true when you're so fed up with each other courtesy of hormones and pride and stress because the universe seems to hate you.

But then we got this little pain in the ass. Who sleeps like an angel half the time and tries to fall down stairs on a daily basis and tugs on Zed's tail too much. And Devlin is my son through and through. Gwen doesn't even bother to get up in the middle of the night anymore because she can just roll over and know I'll be the first one up to take care of him. I'm not a great dad. I don't even know if I'm a good dad. I just know I'm there to try.

Which is why I stay home from work about half the time whereas Gwen just wants to keep powering on because she has one hundred percent more drive than I do. And while her job will always come first, I'm more than happy to stay sitting at home with this shithead and make sure he doesn't hurt the dog or run into anything as he tries to toddle around because he's not exactly coordinated at this point and it's kind of hilarious to watch.

Oh, I'm a horrible parent half the time.

The front door opens and five o' clock sunlight pours in on Devlin and I, and Zed's tail just thumps a little bit as she lifts her head to see Gwen without even getting up. And she shuts the door and kicks off her shoes and comes on over, rubbing Zed's head with one socky foot. And she leans over to kiss me softly. Because everything is soft right now. "Do you want me to take him?" she asks, her voice like air and light and sugar.

"I'll keep him for a little longer," I whisper, knowing we need to stay quiet. "Go take a nap while you can."

Instead of ruffling his hair, she ruffles mine and says nothing, knowing that our actions say everything that words can't. And I want to ask how the doctor's office went today. I want to ask how the ultrasound went. I want to ask if she knows the gender of our second one.

But now's not the time. I stay here. I hold my son; I feel him breathing.

Today's a good day. Zed's tail thumps. She probably agrees. I don't know. She's a weird dog.

A/N: Leave a review? Thanks for reading.