My Fic for this week's ngchallenge. It's a little cutesy and a little funny and a little different from the stuff I usually write.
Challenge: Happy Domestic
Rating: PG-13... references to sex and a few bad words
Warnings/Spoilers: Um... lets see... none. It's set in the future
Summary: Greg questions his manhood and his coolness in the same day.
Bathroom was clean
Kitchen was clean
Living room was clean
Back yard and front yard were clean
Dining room was clean
Den was clean
Plane tickets to his parent’s
Plane tickets to Nick’s parent’s
Scattered toys were put away
Kids rooms were clean
Another quadruple Check
Nate’s snacks for football was bought and ready to be passed out
Aisling’s ballet shoes were in her ballet bag rather than under the couch Check
Rhiannon’s piano books were on her desk
Michael’s picture was on the coffee table waiting for Nick to see it
Christmas decorations were on display and the tree looked great
The necessary food that needed to be made ahead of time was in the fridge
Greg still had his penis
Ch… that was being put under review.
Greg sighed to himself as he looked over his to-do list. He had a freaking to-do list. He couldn’t believe it himself, but if he didn’t have these things written down he’d forget something. As it was he felt like he was forgetting something.
It wasn’t as if the gang hadn’t seen his house in a total state of disarray, but that didn’t mean he couldn’t keep it clean and everything organized. It was a tough job, having four kids, having bills to pay, having a huge house to clean, having a demanding job. He sometimes wondered how he was able to do it.
The guys on the day shift said he somehow worked miracles. Greg didn’t really think so. Sure he was good at his job and still managed to keep on top of things in his house, but it really wasn’t that hard if you wanted it badly enough.
Greg had wanted it badly. He’d practically begged Nick to have a kid. He’d pouted and whined and begged. Nick wasn’t so sure about kids with their schedules. He’d seen Catherine struggle with Lindsey and he didn’t want it to be that way if he had kids.
But Greg had whined. He even let Nick name their son, had through one of Greg’s friends who was willing to just hand over a kid. Greg had wanted to name him Damian, but Nick said it would remind him too much of OMEN.
So Nick named him Nathaniel and Greg was more or less happy with that name. Nick had conceded enough to let Greg give him the middle name Damian.
Greg heard keys and a lock being open. Nick was home. That meant happy time. That was until Greg saw Nicks face, a myriad of emotions leaping from angry to frustrated to confused to shocked to worried.
So maybe happy time would have to be put off for a little while. Greg threw the blanket off of himself and got up off the couch. Nick had bags upon bags of stuff in his hands. Greg took them away from him and put them on the ground next to the Christmas tree as Nick sat down on the couch and let out a long suffering sigh.
“Just tell me it was worth it. Remind me again why it was worth it.” Nick said in an almost desperate tone.
“Um… it makes them happy?” Greg said sitting next to Nick on the couch.
He let his head rest on Nick shoulder and sighed.
“Um… it makes them happy and when they’re happy… they… well they’re good kids. Really good kids. Very well behaved really and they deserve good Christmas presents.” Greg said. Nick let out another sigh.
“I had no problem’s with Nate’s presents. New football. New game system. New games for said game system. And Ann was easy too.”
“How many times have I told you to not call her Ann. Her name is Rhiannon.” Greg said slightly miffed.
“New kid chemistry set. New kid doctor set. A telescope. Those chemistry math games for her computer.” Nick said as though he hadn’t even heard Greg’s comment.
It was an old fight they had. Greg had been allowed to name any girls they had and he’d gone a little extreme. Nobody really had the names Rhiannon or Aisling anymore. Greg said they were pretty.
Nick said they were a mouthful and usually refused to call them by those names. So Rhiannon became Ann and Aisling became Ash.
“And even I’ll go as far to say Ash’s were pretty easy although what the hell is up with the new Barbies nowadays? Anyway, you know she wanted that show on DVD and you bought her the clothes right?”
“Yup, clothes have already been bought.” Greg said with a smile.
“Yeah, well now I know why you made me by Mikey’s last present. What the heck is all the craze over Fuzzy Dynamite 2040 talking dolls?” Greg laughed. He let out a big loud laugh. He couldn’t control himself. The look on Nick’s face was just too priceless.
“You just don’t understand the pull of Fuzzy Dynamite. I’m surprised you haven’t heard Michael singing along to the theme song. You really need to put in for that day shift transfer you know.” Greg said.
“Greg you didn’t see it. Mom’s were literally pushing other mom’s for this stupid toy. It’s fake fur and an electronic talking device.”
“It’s Fuzzy Dynamite, space creature from the future ready to blast an hazardous space sprongs to the depths of Ubla.”
“You can’t be serious with that?” Nick said giving Greg a questioning look.
“I’m not, but your son is.” Greg said.
Nick sighed and ran his fingers through his graying hair. There had been a point when Nick was afraid of going gray, but after meeting Papa Olaf properly for the first time his fears were put to rest. It was better to be gray with a full head of hair than it was to be that bald.
“Did the mean soccer moms hurt my poor Nicky Wicky.” Greg said in his best baby voice.
“You knew about the Fuzzy craze didn’t you. And you sent me out there like a lamb to slaughter.” Nick said scowling.
“Nick, you’re the one that didn’t want to clean and go anywhere near girls stuff. You’re the one who said and this is a direct quote ‘I’ll buy anything so long as I don’t have to cook, clean, or buy anything frilly and pink. I’ve even got the tape recorder to back me up. You put yourself in this position.”
“Well that’s it. We’ve got to put a stop to this Fuzzy Dynamite stuff before his birthday.” Nick said.
“Okay, you can sit down and you can have the talk with the five year old as to why he can’t watch his favorite cartoon anymore. See if you get anymore pictures like that.” Greg said pointing to the picture on the coffee table.
Nick leaned over and picked it up. It was a badly drawn picture of a man in a cap standing on top of the world with a big smile on his face. At the bottom of the picture were the words ‘Superhero Daddy’. Greg must have helped him write it because ‘superhero’ was a pretty hard word for someone in kindergarten to know.
“He saw you on the TV again and asked why you were on the TV. He thought you were like Fuzzy Dynamite saving the world from evil space sprongs. He drew that and asked me to help him spell superhero.” Greg said. Nick let a smile grace his face. The first real one the whole night.
“Okay, so maybe we don’t have to take away the Fuzzy Dynamite.”
“Oh please like you’re not just as big a pushover as I am. Probably an even bigger pushover.”
“No, according to Nathan, I never let him do anything fun.” “He’s still mad about the ski trip?” Nick asked.
“Yes, Nick. Yes, he’s still mad about the ski trip. He’s still mad that I ‘embarrass’ him while he’s playing football. Sometimes I wonder if maybe they got the sperm mixed up.”
“Greg, you know they didn’t. He looks like you.”
“Then where did my son go. Because I remember a kid I used to dress up in cool baby Hot Topic clothes and cool kid clothes. I thought I was teaching him to not become…”
“What the anti-you. Face it Greg the kids turn out entirely different from the parents. You see it happen all the time. He’s just pushing at you cause he’s getting older.”
“He needs to stop that. Notice it’s the kids I biologically fostered that seem to resent me.”
“Ash doesn’t seem to resent you. Of course how can she. She’s only eleven.”
“You can do a lot of resenting at eleven. Like today she asks me if she can go see this movie with that Bret Whatever guy in it. I ask her who’s going and she says ‘Like I don’t know I think Stacy and Janice and April’.
“Then I ask her what it’s rated. She turns on the puppy dog eyes completely with pouty lip and says ‘Daddy, it’s just PG-13. There’s no bad stuff in PG-13 movies’. Yeah right, JAWS was rated PG. Nothing bad in a PG-13 movie my ass. So then I tell her no and she says ‘If Daddy Nick were here he’d let me watch it’. Can you believe that?
“Somehow you’ve become the cool parent and I’ve become the parent that does the punishing. I should at least get to wield a whip.”
“Thought we got rid of all that sex toy stuff when Nate was born.” Nick said jokingly. Greg scowled at him and moved away turning his back to Nick.
“Oh, baby, I didn’t mean it like that.”
“You’re not taking me seriously here. This is a problem. Our kids think I’m evil and you’re just making jokes.”
“Look I’m sorry about the joke. I promise…”
“GRRR! That’s not it. That’s not it okay. I fucking sound like a woman! Might as well just chop of my dick and balls now.” Greg said.
“Greg you’re very much a guy.”
“Yes, I know that. I know I’m a guy. I just… I spent the whole day cleaning, Nick. The whole day. Cleaning and cooking and looking for ballet shoes and buying snacks and looking for books and I feel like a housewife.” Greg grumbled.
Nick smiled. He would have said something about the fact that Greg was the one that wanted the kids and the house and the pets, three cats and a dog.
He would have pointed out that Greg worked, almost as much as Nick did and that he was really good at his job.
He would have pointed out that Greg was in jeans, actual jeans and he had been cleaning along with a Marilyn Manson T-shirt that had given Rhiannon nightmares when she was littler.
He would have pointed out that Greg didn’t have mini-van, flat out refused one despite them having four kids.
He wasn’t a housewife by any means, but Nick didn’t think that that would help.
“Would you want to go back… you know to our life before ballet and football and piano and colorful pictures from our five year old.” Nick asked as he pulled Greg into his lap.
“Well, the sex was great.” Greg said.
“The sex is still great.”
“Yeah, but the sex when we didn’t have kids was awesome. I mean remember that time we did it on the kitchen counter? Or when you dressed up like a cop… or a cowboy. We used to be able to go all day long and still be okay for work the next night. Now, I don’t know things changed.”
“Is it good or bad?” Nick asked.
“I don’t think it can be classified as either. It’s neither good nor bad. It’s just… change.” Greg said.
“After fourteen years you’re not used to it?”
“No, I’m very used to it. I’m extremely used to it. I guess I just liked it better when they were all little. Then they didn’t back talk me. Then they thought I was cool.”
“You’re still cool. They just… I’m not around as much so they try to make up for when I am around. They still love you Greg. They still think you’re the coolest. I still think you’re the coolest.” Nick said kissing Greg’s neck.
“Really. I’m still cool?”
“What forty-four year old man could still bleach his hair and it look good? Greg you’re still way cool. You’ll always be cool. There’s no one or nothing that can dispute your coolness. You’re still the best to me.”
“Thanks Nicky.” Greg said.
“It’s no problem. I know that since Gris left and I became Supervisor it’s been hard. I know that I haven’t exactly been around as much and I know you wish I’d just give the job to Sara…”
“That’s not true. I know you love your job. I love my job. No one is quitting their jobs.”
“Yeah, well sometimes I don’t feel like I’m around enough either. Look if it makes you feel better I’ll try and be around for all the ‘NO’ talks we’re going to have with them in the future. You’re not in this alone. We’re a team.” Nick said.
“And we always made a pretty good team didn’t we.” Greg whispered.
They stayed wrapped in each other arms for a bit before Greg sighed.
“We gotta wrap those presents. And hide them. I caught Rhiannon, sweet precious nerdy Rhiannon, looking for them earlier. Oh and you gotta have the talk with Michael about Santa Claus. Nate and Aisling, in their anger towards me, told him that Santa wasn’t really and that he wasn’t going to get any presents for Christmas.”
Nick smiled. Greg didn’t know just how good he was at this whole thing. He let Nick handle the easy ones, but really Greg was better at handling anything that was wrong with their kids that Nick was.
“Let’s give it a little while. There’s no hurry.”