This story falls into the same universe as Things We Want for Ourselves and Off of the Floor, One More Time to Find You and it is made up of a bunch of drabbles, mainly focusing on Mark and Lexie and their family. This might be too overly sweet and fluffy in some parts but honestly, I need this because right now, I cannot handle any angst whatsoever. If you like a particular section, let me know and if there is one or two sections that a lot of you seem to like, I am thinking of expanding it into a full-blown story.
He used to wake up to his alarm clock blaring every morning at seven o’clock with some woman lying in bed next to him but he could never remember her name and he would shower, get dressed and leave as quickly as possible before she could wake up and the awkward “morning after” could begin. Sometimes, he would pass a nurse in the hallway who glared at him and he wondered if she had been the one in his bed but just as quickly as he saw her, he forgot her again, moving onto the next one.
Now, he wakes up to the television blaring downstairs – the channel usually always set on cartoons – and a four-year-old, Ally, jumping onto the bed in a fit of giggles, telling daddy that he has to get up. Sometimes, Lexie is still in bed with him, asleep as well, his arms usually always wrapped around her, but other times, she has already taken her shower and is downstairs in the kitchen, their six-month old daughter, Ellie – named Eleanor Carolyn after Mark’s grandmother and Mrs. Shepherd – the newest addition to the Sloan family, on her hip as she gets breakfast ready.
People at the hospital have been whispering, calling Lexie “the Sloan baby machine” since she has taken another break from her residency to stay at home with their daughters, but the gossip bothers him more than her and he doesn’t understand why the staff at the hospital insist on talking about things they clearly know nothing about. Lexie loves being a doctor but she loves being a wife and mother more and Mark hates that she is being silently, and not-so-silently, judged because of that.
He used to live on room service or the slop from the cafeteria that the hospital claimed was food. Now, the cabinets in their kitchen are filled with blue and yellow boxes of macaroni and cheese and cans of chicken noodle soup, red boxes of Ritz crackers and smaller ones of raisins and blue boxes of graham crackers. There are boxes of Trix and Cinnamon Toast Crunch on the counters and a glass jar of Chips Ahoy chocolate chip cookies. In the refrigerator, there are cartons of both white and chocolate milk, juice boxes, fresh fruit and vegetables, pudding and Jell-o cups and a couple purple boxes of peanut butter and jelly Uncrustables.
He eats like his four-year-old daughter does and he endures the teasing Sadie and Callie put him through when he munches on celery sticks with peanut butter or brings a bologna sandwich, an apple and a couple of graham crackers from home to eat for lunch.
His mornings are no longer quiet.
He gets used to a baby crying and eating his own breakfast while holding Ellie in his arms and feeding her a bottle. He insists on always feeding Ellie her breakfast since he is at the hospital all day and he wants to be able to have at least one meal with her. Ally has a thing against chairs and stands up on hers as she eats her bowl of cereal – milk dribbling down her chin – and she sits down when Mark and Lexie tell her to only to stand up again a few minutes later. And though he hears it every other morning, each time the newspaper is thrown against the front door, Charlie, their Dalmatian, begins barking and running to see what the noise is.
Mark and Lexie share brief, smiling kisses between bites of toast and sips of coffee and when he goes upstairs to get ready for work, Ally follows him and stands on the closed toilet lid in the bathroom, watching him as he shaves at the sink, though he really doesn’t shave thoroughly since he always has a scruffy beard. He asks her if he did a good job and she’ll pat her hands on his cheeks, giggling and nodding her head with approval.
Once he’s ready to go, he comes downstairs again and kisses Ellie on the head before giving Lexie a lengthier, deeper kiss than the ones they had at breakfast. Ally has been signed up for a.m. preschool and Mark drops her off every morning on his way to the hospital. Even if he isn’t working, he takes her because Lexie is still unable to do it without getting overly emotional about how their babygirl Ally is already in preschool. Mark doesn’t even want to imagine what it’ll be like next year when they drop Ally off for kindergarten.
He still has his Porsche but it is parked in the garage and it doesn’t make too much sense to drive when he has two kids who need to sit in car seats in the back. He drives an SUV now and his morning drive is no longer quiet but instead is now filled with the eager chatter of a four-year-old from her booster seat and when he drops her off in front of her classroom, he crouches down to her height and kisses her forehead and she hugs him as tightly as she can.
“Love you, daddy,” she smiles before scampering off into the room with the other preschoolers.
“Love you, too,” he says and watches her for a moment from the doorway.
He knows that there was a time when those words were the hardest for him to say. He just can’t really remember that time anymore.
A single mom in a too-tight shirt who has just dropped her daughter off in the same classroom tries to meet his eye but he doesn’t even notice her.
He has pictures of Lexie, Ally and Ellie on his desk in his office and because of this, the interns begin to get it into their heads that he’s a nice guy. So he snaps and snarls and smirks with pride when he makes one of them cry and run for the bathrooms to hide in. He knows that if Lexie was there, she would give him a frown and a disapproving look but to him, it doesn’t matter if he has a wife and a family now. He still doesn’t like interns and he still thinks they’re all idiots. Nothing is going to change that about him.
“I don’t know what to do,” Derek says one night as they sit at the bar at Joe’s.
He doesn’t go out after his shifts anymore, instead, getting home as quickly as he can but that night, Derek begs him to get a least one drink with him and he isn’t able to say no. He now sips at his glass of scotch, trying not to glance at his watch on his wrist every few seconds and trying not to act too anxious to get the hell out of there.
“What do you think I should do?” Derek asks him.
It takes him a minute but he then realizes that Derek is asking him for relationship advice. In the back of his mind, he wonders if the temperature in hell just dropped.
After picking her up from preschool at noon, Lexie brings Ally and Ellie to the hospital, hoping he has time for lunch. He takes the baby carrier from Lexie – Ellie asleep inside - holding it easily with one hand as Ally bounces in front of them as they walk down the hallway, enthusiastically telling him all about her school day.
In the cafeteria, they sit at a table in the corner and people watch the family curiously as they eat their lunch because no matter how much time has passed, they still can’t believe that he has a family. Lexie hasn’t really been back in the hospital since giving birth to Ellie so many come up to her to say hello and to look at the newest Sloan girl. It doesn’t surprise them that Mark now has two daughters. It seems as if it is fate’s way of pulling a joke on him.
He scowls as a resident comes up and comments Lexie on how hot she looks and that it isn’t obvious at all that she has had two kids. Lexie blushes, laughing slightly in that way she does when she isn’t sure what to say. When the resident leaves, Mark leans over and cupping Lexie’s cheeks in his hands, he kisses her hard on the mouth, not caring who is looking.
He makes a mental note to go and have a chat with that resident later.
Ally and then Ellie get the chicken pox and Lexie and Mark forget what sleep is for a week. He reschedules his surgeries and stays home to help rub calamine lotion on their bodies and to make sure that Ally doesn’t scratch and to hold Ellie as she cries seemingly nonstop. And not once does he wish he was at Joe’s instead. He wonders if that means he has changed completely. A miniscule part of him hopes he hasn’t.
Thatcher shows up with a one month sober chip from AA. Lexie believes him. Mark wants to toss him off the front porch. They get into a big fight that night about whether or not they should let Ally and Ellie meet the man who is technically their grandfather. Mark wins though Lexie doesn’t talk to him for a day afterwards so he considers it a hollow victory.
Just like Mark knew he would, Thatcher falls off that weak-wheeled wagon and calls Lexie in the middle of the night, asking her to come and pick him up from whatever bar he was getting kicked out of. Mark goes instead and handles his so-called father-in-law none too gently as he picks him up and then drops him off at his house, all but shoving him literally out of the car, before going back home himself. Lexie is sitting up in bed, waiting for him, and the instant Mark steps into the bedroom, she starts to cry and he holds her as she shakes with sobs. She falls asleep eventually but Mark can’t.
He doesn’t want to just in case she wakes up and needs him.
Charlie is out in the backyard when he gets bit by a bat of all things and though Lexie tries to keep herself controlled, she can’t help but think the worst and begins crying because of it. And since Lexie is crying and also because she doesn’t understand what is going on, Ally begins crying too.
Mark gently puts Charlie in the back of the SUV and drives him to the vet – coincidentally, their vet being Finn Dandridge. As he begins running all sorts of tests on Charlie, Mark stands next to the steel table in the examination room, rubbing a hand behind Charlie’s right ear – the ear the dog prefers to be rubbed behind – and trying to keep himself from getting over emotional. His stomach is in a constant knot though at the idea of Charlie getting rabies and having to be put down.
Charlie has been with Mark and Lexie for five years now. The three became a family even before marriage and babies. He remembers the way Lexie’s face lit up when he took the puppy to the hospital to show her and how he used to sleep on Mark’s chest as he laid stretched out on the couch, watching television. He remembers bringing Ally home from the hospital and then Ellie, introducing both baby girls to the dog and he never barking or snapping even when Ally grew into a toddler and pulled his tail or tried to ride him around the living room.
On his days off, Mark will take Charlie out with him on runs and every Halloween, he comes when Mark takes Ally trick-or-treating around the neighborhood and accompanies the family to the tree farm about an hour outside of Seattle when they go cut down their Christmas tree.
Mark can’t imagine doing any of these things without Charlie. He can’t imagine eating and not having Charlie beg at his feet. He can’t imagine waking up every morning and not having the dog stretched out across the foot of the bed.
When Finn tells him that the bat wasn’t infected with rabies, or anything, and Charlie is going to be just fine – just give him these antibiotics twice a day until the bottle is empty – Mark realizes that he has been holding his breath. He doesn’t even wait until Finn leaves the room to hug Charlie tightly and tell him that he is a good boy.
His Saturday nights no longer include going to Joe’s, getting shit faced and leaving with the first woman he hits on.
Now, he orders them pizza for dinner and they wind up in the living room, watching movies. Lexie changes Ally into her pajamas – she prefers to wear Mark’s white undershirts, which are so large on her, the neckline falls down past one shoulder and the hem brushes against the tops of her feet with the sleeves almost reaching her wrists – and then Ally will climb back onto the couch and nestle her back against Mark’s side and together, the two will eat their slices of pizza and laugh at the same parts as they watch Wall-E and Monsters, Inc., Ally’s favorites.
Lexie will have to put a hand over her mouth to keep herself from laughing just from watching them and she doesn’t understand why Mark gets mad when people call Ally “Little Sloan” because that’s exactly what she is.
Shower sex with Lexie becomes his favorite. At night, when both Ally and Ellie are fast asleep, they go into their bathroom – checking and double-checking that the door is locked and that the baby monitor on the counter is turned on – strip off their clothes and kiss one another underneath the warm spray of the water, a smile blooming across her lips against his.
He turns and pins her against the tiled wall of the stall, his hand slipping beneath her thigh, hooking it around his hip, and he watches as her eyes close and her mouth falls open in a soft moan as he pushes inside of her. Her arms wrap around his shoulders, pulling him closer, her mouth seeking his out.
This is the one time that they are able to take their time – late at night, locked in their own steam filled world, just the two of them.
The water pounds down around their rocking bodies and her soft cries echo off of the walls. Her hands go to his face, brushing the water rolling down in his eyes out of the way, her fingers gripping his hair as he speeds up. He touches her everywhere he can. Her thighs, hips, stomach, breasts, back, his own fingers pushing her wet, heavy hair away.
Lexie lifts one of her feet onto the edge of the bathtub and starts to grind her hips against his, which causes him to grip her hips tighter and lets out his own soft groan. He stops his own thrusting and lets Lexie take over, his hold on her so tight as she fucks him that he leaves finger prints on her hips. She is panting and crying out softly with each thrust of her hips against him and she holds onto his shoulders for much-needed balance.
Mark feels himself getting closer and he resumes his pace, taking over again, thrusting in and out of her, her cries growing louder. He picks her up and her legs wrap around him, tightening her body around him and he pounds her into the wall.
“God, Mark. Oh… my god,” she whimpers, her head falling against the wall with a soft thunk but she doesn’t even notice as his lips latch onto the side of her throat, sucking on the delicate, sensitive skin as he thrusts faster and faster.
She then cries out and her body starts to shake and Mark grinds his teeth and jerks inside of her, emptying himself as she trembles in his arms with her own orgasm, whispering how much she loves him.
She has gone back on the pill since giving birth to Ellie but if she hadn’t, Mark doesn’t doubt that she would be pregnant again very soon.
The nurse doesn’t even hesitate as she stands in front of him and pulls her pink scrub top off over her head and unclasps her bra, dropping both on the floor of his office. Mark is sitting on a stool in front of her, not looking up past her bare breasts.
“I was thinking balancing both out to a C-cup,” she says, her hands on her hips.
Mark doesn’t say anything, instead, taking his marker, he begins drawing on her breasts, noting that her left breast was slightly larger than her right. “And you’re at about a D right now?”
She nods. “I hate them.”
“I’d make the incisions here in this anchor shape,” he said, drawing dotted lines in a line from her areola down her breast to the underside of it and then in a circle around her nipples. “It would be small but I can remove a large amount of tissue and fat from that. We would then move your nipples and areolas up into a higher position about… here.” He draws small circles where he is indicating. “You ever want kids?” He asks, finally looking up at her face. “Because if you do and you want to breastfeed, I don’t recommend getting the surgery until after that.”
The nurse shudders. “No. Definitely no kids. I’m not Lexie,” she responds but when she realizes what she has said, her eyes widen. “Dr. Sloan, I didn’t… I meant…”
Mark stares at her for a moment, his jaw tensing, and then stands up, capping his marker and pushing the stool away with his foot. “Dr. Cadman is down the hall. He’ll do the surgery for you.”
“But…” the nurse sputters. “You're the best-”
Mark smirks. “So after you insult my wife, you think I would do anything for you? And if I did do the surgery, what makes you think that I wouldn’t fuck it up on purpose? Give you one B and one C. Or how about two DD tits? That could look good.”
The nurse narrows her eyes at him. “You are such an asshole,” she snaps, grabbing her bra and top again, jerking them back on. “I cannot believe I ever slept with you.”
Mark looks at her, his expression being quickly taken over with disgust. God, he had slept with her? Had he had no standards when he began sleeping his way through the hospital? Is there any female in the hospital he hasn’t slept with? He nearly shuddered and as she stormed from the office, he looked at a picture of Lexie on his desk. He feels sick with himself and he has no idea what Lexie ever saw in him.
Lexie signs Ally up for a youth soccer league intended for children four to six years old and she practically wears her official blue and yellow everywhere when she first gets it, crying and pouting when Lexie makes her take it off.
Each team has six players, five on a field at a time and whenever one gets tired, they can go sit down while the other goes to play. There are no official positions and neither side keeps score. The first game, Mark stands with Ellie in his arms on the sidelines with Lexie and Owen, who has come to support his goddaughter.
“Controlled chaos,” Owen comments while watching the children scream and run wildly on the field with an amused smirk.
“I have no idea what’s going on,” Mark admits with a confused frown.
Lexie laughs. “She’s burning off some of that endless energy.”
After the forty minute game is up, Ally comes running over to them and Lexie, smiling widely, drops to her knees and Ally instantly runs into her arms, her cheeks flushed from the exertion and some of the dark strands of hair had escaped her ponytail now stuck to the back of her neck with sweat. She has played the entire forty minutes, running back and forth and not stopping to rest once.
“Mommy, did you see? I kicked the ball!” Ally exclaims excitedly and breathlessly.
“I did see,” Lexie smiles, nodding. “You were amazing out there.”
“Daddy! Uncle Owen! Did you see?”
“Of course we saw,” Mark says and holding Ellie in one arm, resting the baby against his chest, he scoops Ally up in his other arm. “Best damn player out of both teams.”
“Mark,” Lexie admonishes his language but she is smiling as she does and he grins at her, giving her a quick wink before looking back at Ally.
“So, in celebration of your first soccer game and your mad kick skills, where do you want to go for lunch?” Mark asks. “Anywhere you want.”
“McDonalds!” She exclaims.
“A fine choice,” Owen nods and she laughs at him, stretching her arms out to him and Owen takes her from Mark’s arms, giving her a hug and patting her on the back before setting her back down on her feet. “How’d you get so good at kicking anyway?”
“She had nine months of practice when Lex was pregnant with her,” Mark smirks.
Ally begins chattering as she and Owen begin walking across the park to where their cars are parked, practically bouncing up and down as she does, and Owen listens to her every word intently. Lexie and Mark, still holding Ellie in one arm, follow behind them and Mark glances at Lexie before he lifts his free arm and drops it around her shoulders, pulling her to his side. She tilts her head up and smiles at him, a smile he returns.
“So how do you think we’re doing, Mrs. Sloan?” He asks her.
Lexie smiles, laughing a bit. “I think we’re doing pretty damn good, Mr. Sloan.”