In Another Life

Okay, so I told myself I wasn't going to do multiple fics at one time because when I do that...I always lose interest in at least one of them. But I already have like 10 chapters of this written, and if I get a good response from this chapter, I'm going to post them over the next week or so. This idea has been bugging me for at least a week goes.

Yes, I have changed a fair few things in this fic, but I hope you guys can get onboard with the changes and enjoy the fic. :)



Andrea woke once again to the sound of Penny crying in the other room. She sighed and rolled over, checking the clock. It flashed, illuminous green: 3.03am. Groaning, she shoved back the quilt cover and got up, walking out of her bedroom into her daughters and lifting the crying baby out of her bed.

"Whats the matter, princess? Hmm? You okay?" She cooed, rocking the child to try and soothe her. She smoothed down the babys hair to find it wet with sweat. She pulled off the childs pyjama top, assuming she was too warm, and then pulled her into her arms once more, attempting to soothe her. Penny wasn't in the mood to cooperate, evidently, as no matter what Andrea did, she would not settle.

Andrea tried giving her milk, she wouldn't take it. She tried giving her water, Penny threw up. Andrea changed the baby and the sheets on her bed, Penny still cried. She sang, she bounced, she hummed, she cooed. Nothing.

"Penny," She said to her eleven month old baby, eventually, when her patience had run out, "There is nothing wrong with you! You're fine! Why are you doing this to me?"

Penny just continued to cry.

Eventully, when she looked at the clock and realized that it read 4.45am, Andrea couldn't take it anymore. She put Penny back into her bed and left the room, closing the door behind her. All that did was make her feel guilty. She moved to sit on her bed, putting her head in her hands when she sat, cross-legged a top her quilt.

Philip would be home soon, she knew, and once he was, she wouldn't sleep anyway. He'd want to rant to her about how bad his meetings in Milan had gone and how everyone was beneath him, how they had no idea how brilliant he was, how it was no wonder he'd been promoted while the rest of them stayed beneath him. Meanwhile, she would sit there, silently, thinking about how she was so nervous about going back to work, for the first time since the baby was born and how she couldn't make her own baby stop crying and how she felt like an indaequate mother. But he'd never want to hear that, he wantedto believe she was the same happy go-lucky person she had been when they got married.

It was then that she heard his key turn in the lock and pasted a false smile on her face, walking to the top of the stairs. He opened the door and looked up at the stairs. When he spotted her, the ever-perfect wife, his face broke into a smile and she gave him a weary smile back, sighing. He frowned when he heard Penny crying.

"She's been going none-stop for almost two hours now." She told him, with a yawn and he nodded, frowning.

"I'll get her. Make me coffee?" He said, passing her on the stairs and kissing her forehead brusquely. She sighed, realizing how exhausted she was going to be for her first day of work tomorrow.

"Sure. Glad you're home." She sighed and he paused on the landing.

"Is that sarcasm?" He said, his voice turning cold. She turned to look at him.

"You have to ask?"

"What the hell is your problem?" He demanded and she scoffed.

"How about the fact that you've been off travelling for three weeks and all I get when you get home is a swift peck on the forehead and an order, hmm? Does that not warrant a little annoyance on my part?" She knew she was going to blow his lid, but she couldn't help it. Penny had been screaming for so long that she could feel her ears ringing and she was so tired, she thought she could cry. His face turned dark.

"You're out of line. I haven't been travelling, I've been working!" He insisted and she scoffed once more, aware deep inside that she was being slightly unreasonable.

"Sure. I'm sure you didn't enjoy one second of it!" She told him, storming past him into their bedroom.

"Just where do you think you're going!?" He asked her, when he walked into their bedroom to see her pulling on a pair of jeans under her 'I heart Paris' t-shirt. It was one he'd brought back from one of his many business trips for her.

."Out." She said, grabbing her keys from her dresser and then storming out of the house, slamming the door and leaving Philip standing in their bedroom, shocked.

"You're late, again." Lori's voice came from the darkness that enveloped their kitchen and Rick cursed under his breath.

"Jesus, Lori." He said, trying to catch his breath again, "You scared me."

She flicked on the light and he could see her sitting near the door which led to the lounge, legs and arms crossed, still in the clothes she'd been wearing that morning when she left for work. She looked pissed. He glanced at the table and saw an empty bottle of red wine. Great. She tended to get vocal about their issues when she'd had a drink. It might be healthy to talk about their issues, but whenever Rick brought it up when she was sober, she wasn't half as cooperative.

"Lori, I told you I was working a twelve-hour shift." He said, running a hand, tiredly, over his face.

"Been working a lot of those, lately, haven't you." She said, a spiteful tone to her voice as she knocked back the last of her wine from her glass. She stood up, walking over to put her glass into the sink and the wine bottle on the side.

"Do you want the extension on the house or not, Lori? Because no offence, but working receptionist at Carls school doesn't pay the bills, let alone pay for that." He told her, feeling his anger bubble over as she pushed all of his buttons. She knew exactly how his temper worked; they'd been together for fifteen years, it would be a pretty telling sign if she didn't.

"Sorry. I came right out of college and got pregnant with your kid. Didn't really get the chance to persue a career after that." She said, her tone nonchalant. He could sense the underlying tones of anger, however, and his rose even higher, as did his voice.

"Our kid, Lori. And watch what you're saying. You love that kid more than anything and you know it. Tell me you'd do it differently if you could, and then maybe I'll consider believing thats what you're angry about, but until then..." He couldn't find calm words to convey his meaning and she rounded on him.

"How would you know anything about him!? You're never even here to spend any time with him!" She accused, her eyes wide with anger.

"Because I'm out working!" He yelled back at her and she stormed past him, into the lounge, spitting her final words back at him.

"Go to hell, Rick."

He heard her storm off up the stairs and, too angry to follow her to bed and too riled to find sleep on their uncomfortable sofa, which he had become far too well acquainted with recently, he grabbed his eyes and slammed the door behind him.