6 Years Later
"You know, this is not making it any easier," I huffed, trying to get the crib up the stairs.
"You're past due anyway, Alex. Time to induce some labor."
"Why would you make your pregnant wife help you take a crib up a flight of stairs?" We set the box down inside the baby's room.
"Because," he wrapped an arm around my shoulders, "you've got to earn your keep somehow."
"Alek…" I warned.
"Oh c'mon darling!" he exclaimed in a posh, English accent. "We're in Bayswater! England! Aren't you excited!" I smiled up at him softly.
"I'm glad we're not playing cat and mouse anymore." His voice dropped.
"Me too. How are we going to explain our love life to our child, hmm?" I chuckled.
"She'll find out without us telling her. Especially if she sees your little diary," I said, teasingly. Alek sighed and rolled his eyes.
"That is meant for no one else's eyes but yours."
"I want to write something in it one day."
"Then go ahead. What's mine is yours, Alex." I grabbed the hand that was hanging by my shoulder and kissed his knuckles.
"You know, this baby is having one heck of a time in there," I pointed to my stomach.
"It's probably cozy. I just hope she's not like that in real life."
"What do you mean?"
"You know, squatters." I laughed aloud.
"She will move out when she's ready, Alek. The baby's not even born yet! Give her a chance!" Alek shrugged, looking back at the television.
"She's already proved to me that she can't be punctual. Females…"
"Oh, shush you," I said, leaning in for a kiss. Alek kissed me softly and then pecked me on the cheek.
"You have a nice glow."
"Well, that's nice to know."
"We rhymed," he stated.
"About time," I said, trying to keep it going.
"Corny…" Alek replied, "but cute." I chuckled.
I let my eyes wander past his shoulder to the coffee table. I saw my father, his eyes crinkling as he smiled for the picture. I sighed heavily. I felt Alek caress my cheek.
"Can you believe just a year ago, we got married?" I asked absently.
"And now, we're having a child."
"You're going to get your dream, Alek."
"Ahh, yes. Never thought I would achieve it."
"You were persistent enough. So I rewarded you for your efforts."
"Though I certainly never deserved it."
"Alek, it never mattered how you went about it. I was in love with you anyway."
"Alex, you don't understand. I can't take back how I treated you when we were teenagers. I abused you."
"Well, we were both off a bit Alek. Remember, I fell for you anyway."
"I just wish I could do it over again. Treat you more respectfully."
"Alek, this is a stretch, but I dare say, if you hadn't done what you did, we wouldn't be together now."
"How do you figure?"
"You forced me to realize that I had feelings for you. I would've stayed in denial forever. But you helped me see that, well, mentally we were on the same level. We would've never been able to get to this point of contentment if we didn't have that period of darkness in our lives. We had to get over a lot of the demons we carried with us and somehow, we found solace in each other. I don't regret anything that's happened between us nor would I change it." Alek looked at me intensely for a moment before placing a kiss on my jaw.
"I love you so much."
"I love you too. Around the world and back again."
Sweat was dripping from my forehead and my hair was plastered to my forehead.
"You did well, Alex. I love you more than you know right now." I was still breathing heavily from the labor.
"How does she look?" I said, panting.
"She's beautiful. Just like her mother." The nurse walked over to me.
"Here's your lovely new daughter." She handed the baby to me. She started to fuss.
"Shh, shh, mommy's got you baby girl. Don't cry, don't cry." The baby stopped whimpering and opened her eyes, trying to focus on me.
"What do you want to name her?" Alek asked, "I was thinking Alexi. I figured it would fit with both of our names."
"Alek, her eyes…"
"What about them?"
"I want to name her Midori."
"I picked it out months ago. I thought she might have your eyes. And I wanted to give her a name that was significant. I've always loved your eyes, Alek. I think they're your best feature. And now the man I love the most has given me a daughter with that beautiful eye color. So, I picked out Midori. It's Japanese, meaning green or verdant."
"But… our daughter's not Japanese." I smiled at Alek's look of confusion.
"Work with me?" Alek looked from me to the baby nestled in my arms.
"Fine," he sighed, "Midori it is. I'll go tell the nurse." I nodded and he went out the door.
"Midori," I said softly. Midori made a small noise and I smiled.
"Baby Midori with the striking green eyes..."
And that's the end folks! I hope you enjoyed. It's been a long time coming finding the right ending for this turbulent story. But I'm pretty happy with it now. Please let me know your thoughts!