Characters: Sam, Danny, Tucker, James
Word Count: 1, 560
With a light sigh, Sam pulled the sticky note off the toilet lid. The ones on the mirror she could forgive. The notes stuck to the fridge she could look past. She could even ignore the post-its all over the front door. But this? On the underside of the toilet lid? This was officially crossing over into scarily obsessive.
Upon exiting the bathroom she approached Danny, holding the sticky note out. "You left the toilet lid up," she scolded, sidling up next to him. Danny had his goggles over his eyes still, half watching the TV and half-watching whatever was humming in the microwave.
"Oh, sorry. It happens," he mumbled distractedly. She continued standing beside him, waiting for him to take notice, so when he didn't she flapped the sticky note by the side of his head. He turned to look at it and she smacked it on one of the lenses of his goggles.
"Danny. You have got to chill out with these reminders." He stripped the post-it from his goggles and scanned it. Not like he didn't know exactly what it said – they all read April 3rd, every single one he had tacked onto every surface in the apartment, and just like the reminder he got on his phone every morning.
"Well, I- I just don't want to forget, y'know?" he whined indignantly, sticking the note onto the fridge by two offensively green and yellow ones with the same message. "You know how upset my mom got about my dad-"
"But I'm not your mom and you're not your dad," Sam said for probably the third time since the post-its began appearing. She plucked the note off the fridge and tore it in half despite his little squeak of protest.
"B-but, I mean, it's our first anniversary. I want to make sure – absolutely sure – that everything goes right."
"Danny." She put one hand firmly on his shoulder, always made difficult by how much taller her was, and looked him in the eye as best she could through his opaque green goggles. "I. Don't. Care. If it goes wrong. You're the one making this a big deal. Our lives are super crazy, I'm totally aware of that. So I'd never blame you if you for-"
In the middle of her speech Danny hiccupped a wisp of blue mist, and she settled back on her heels. "Oh, I, uh," Danny stammered out, tugging the goggles off his head.
"Yeah, that's exactly what I mean." She pulled him down by the shirt collar for a peck and released him. "Good luck. Don't stress out, alright?"
Danny groaned, his shoulders drooping. "Yeah, alright," he muttered.
While he was gone Sam took the liberty of removing a few more sticky notes from around the house. It was still mid-March. She wasn't sure if she'd be able to survive until April.
The sticky notes never went away completely but she stopped finding them in bizarre places. It didn't stop Danny from constantly checking his suit, wrapped in plastic and tucked away in their closet. On the last day of March he called the restaurant just to make sure they still had the reservation squared away. By the time April 3rd finally rolled around Sam was exhausted and more than ready to show Danny that all this fretting was stupid, and hopefully prevent him from going through this nonsense again next year. Luckily when he was sitting at the table, menu in hand, he was back to his own laid back way.
Until her mini ectogun, the one she always stashed in the hidden pocket of her purse, malfunctioned and caught fire, setting off the sprinklers and evacuating the restaurant. They stood outside the restaurant wringing out their wet clothes. Sam set her jaw, daring Danny to say anything. They were silent on the ride home and settled for reheated leftovers in their pajamas instead.
March 2nd of the next year Sam found the first sticky note on his bedside table. She tried to nip it in the bud but by the end of the week the apartment was even worse than the year before. He had gone smaller-scale that year with plans, a simple picnic in the park – he'd rented one of the concrete gazebo structures, too, on the off chance that it rained. He took his nervousness out especially hard on ghosts and a week before their anniversary there'd scarcely been even a sighting of a ghost.
The sky was a little cloudy but blessedly clear of rain. Danny and Sam landed in the foresty outcrop surrounding the park, picnic basket full of (mostly) vegan food, wine, and a red-and-white checked blanket.
Even before they got to the park they could hear the raucous screeching of kids. The gazebos were teeming with parents supervising dozens of eight year olds in party hats punting around a soccer ball.
"Uh, are there any other gazebo things?" Danny asked in a hushed tone, but Sam was already calling back the lady they'd set the reservation up with.
"Y-yes, we're so sorry, Mrs. Fenton," she mumbled. "It was our mistake. We accidentally double booked for today. Would you like to reschedule?"
Danny shook his head so Sam told her no, thank you, and goodbye. "Look, we'll just…" She pocketed the phone and scanned the park for the clearest patch. "Over there, we'll just set up over there in the grass. We don't need the gazebo," she added when she noticed Danny's mistrustful look. "It'll be fine. Cute, even. Romantic."
There was nothing romantic about the soccer balls constantly being shot at them, though, especially the one that knocked the open wine bottle into Danny's lap. Disgruntled, they headed home. It wasn't quite as romantic to spread the picnic blanket in their living room in their pajamas again.
By their third anniversary Sam was starting to get a little on-edge herself. She didn't gripe at Danny about the sticky notes and found herself calling the theater a few times to make sure they hadn't given away their tickets or burned down or something.
Then April 2nd she got a phone call from Tucker. "Hey, Tuck!" she chirped. "Long time hearing from you!"
"Uh, yeah, hey Sam," he said sheepishly. "Been kinda grounded, what with my arm." An arm that he had pulled a nerve in a while ago, Sam recalled. "Uh… I was wondering if either you or Danny could come with me to the d- uh, the d- the doctor's tomorrow? You know how I get, I just…"
Sam opened and closed her mouth a few times, meaning to remind Tucker it was her anniversary tomorrow. But instead she asked "What time?".
"Well the surgery starts at nine but I gotta be there by eight and I can't eat anything – or is that pregnancy? I dunno, but I'll be super out of it so I'll need a ride home too." Sam did the vague math in her head and guessed she'd get back by one or two pm, which left plenty of time to get to the theater. She told Danny her plans that night when he got back from his folks' and he'd agreed it was the best course of action. He was going to spend the morning with his parents again moving them to their new location downtown and they were going to meet at the theater at five.
Sam was so distracted by seeing Tucker again that she forgot to be worried. The drive up was pleasant, even with Tucker a little nervous as he was. The surgery went longer than Sam had hoped. The drive home was horrific and rife with traffic – the highway was shut down to one lane and crawled along unbearably slow, with a woozy, drugged Tucker loudly belting along to the radio in the passenger seat. By the time she got home to change she found two voicemails on her phone about how Jack had accidentally released a forgotten subject in the new lab and Danny wouldn't be home until late and the theater was a bust. Danny crawled into bed around midnight with Sam already sound asleep.
The aftermath of a massive ghost infestation prevented them from celebrating it again the next year and Danny was at his wit's end. The following year Sam was riffling through bills like any other day – mostly electric bills, but thanks to the more efficient energy plans Sam had put into effect for the old Fentonworks building, these were getting smaller and smaller each time. She skimmed the print disinterestedly before looking back at the date it was sent and freezing up. "Oh," she said simply. Danny, lying on the couch with a five-month-old James asleep on his chest, made a little questioning grunt, not looking away from the TV. "It's the 7th today, isn't it?" she asked.
"Uh… I think?" Danny replied.
Danny was silent, drumming his fingers against James' back. "…oh, we missed…"
She watched Danny intently as he scrunched his brow up. "Uhhhh…" he drawled out, lolling his head back to look at her. "You wanna go get ice cream or something?
Sam padded over and sat down at the foot of the couch, brushing her fingers over their son's dark hair. "Nah. I think we're okay to sit around in our pajamas for a change."