Chapter 1: Sam and Harriet
Sam and Harriet Worry About April.
"Woe is me. Woe, O, woe is me!" Sofia says as she enters through the back door of the house.
"Problem, Sofia?" Sam asks her as he is taking his medication for his OI.
"Yes." Sofia says. "It's my hair - it has split ends, it's dull and listless, it makes my face look-"
"It's age?" Harriet says.
"My sister!" Sam cheers.
"If you're gonna make fun of somebody, make fun of Bailey!" Sofia snaps.
Bailey looks up from his paperwork, visibly annoyed at her statement.
"I need the professional care of the most talented hairdresser in Seattle - Keri Knauff. Oh, she's so brilliant. Do you know he was the first one ever to use coconut oil?"
"I'd check my facts if I were you, Sofia. Thousands of people have been using coconut oil for their hair ever since it came into existence. Plus, it'll keep your hair in check for as long as it need to."
"I just don't believe you, Bailey!"
"Ask Zola and everyone else." He tells her. "She's a phone call or a plane ride away."
"The problem is, Keri charges $475, and it's just not in my budget this month. Oh, that's the trouble with being beautiful - the maintenance will kill you."
The Avery's roll their eyes at Sofia.
"I have an idea, Sofia." Bailey starts. "How about moonlighting and making some extra money?"
"Another job?" Sofia says in disbelief. "Bailey, I already work my fingers to the bone 40 hours a week at the daycare. "Don't eat the paste, Morgan. Don't sit on the rabbit, Peter. Stay away from the monkey bars, Alex." It's a wonder I'm not an alcoholic."
"Yet." Sam chimes in.
"Ugh. What I meant was, how about working for me? I'm swamped with this project for media arts class, and there is money for an assistant." Bailey says.
"Tell me more." Sofia says, suddenly interested.
"Well, we're creating spectacular pieces of art, that ranges from computer animation, digital art, internet art, etc. There's about 20 or so choices."
"For someone on the look out for something new for their hair, it's not a matter of life and death. I mean, you excel in communications, so picking one of the given options shouldn't be a problem." Harriet says.
"It really shouldn't." Sam concurs.
"By "Tell me more," I mean, "Does it pay about $500?"
"Well, I suppose that'd be OK." Bailey sighs.
"But I can't believe, with something this important to Bailey, that you are still so self-centered." Sam says.
"No wonder your moms cut you off." Harriet says.
"Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Whatever." Sofia says, as she is pulling a compact mirror out of her purse and a tube of lipstick. "Count me in." She says as she starts to put on her lipstick.
"Harriet, Sam, can one of you drive me to the mall Friday night? They're giving free blood pressure tests, and some of the girls and I have a high-low bet." A frail April says as she enters the kitchen.
"Mom, honey, don't you remember?"
"Remember what?" April asks her daughter.
"Friday night we're planning on having dinner at Joe's Stone Crab." Sam states.
"Oh?" She asks them, confused.
"It's your wedding anniversary." Her kids tell her.
"Oh, yeah, right. Sounds nice." April says.
"Mom, you didn't forget, did you?" Sam asks her.
April huffs semi-angrily.
"April-" Bailey starts, but she cuts him off.
"Oh, forgive me, I forgot something." She tells them. "Maybe you should ship me back to one of those ill-equipped nursing homes. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'll be in the living room being feeble."
"If I can find the living room!" She says as she exits the kitchen.
"Sam, what just happened?"
"Well, weren't you listening?" Sofia asks. "April came in and asked one of these two, to drive her to the mall for a blood pressure test. And then Sam told April that they had a date to go out to dinner Friday night, and then April said-"
"Um, Bailey, would you hand me the newspaper, please?" Sam asks him.
"Oh." He says, handing Sam the paper.
"No, the "Metro" section." Harriet says.
"Here you go." He says as he hands Sam the "Metro" section.
"-that she and the girls-"
Sam whacks Sofia in the head with the newspaper.
Harriet and Bailey laugh.
"Hey, don't kill the messenger." Sofia says.
"It's Ma." Harriet sighs.
"She's becoming more forgetful. And she denies it and she gets mad." Sam says.
"How bad is it?" Bailey asks them.
"Bad." Sam says. "We never even took her to a nursing home at all."
"It's not just a matter of small things anymore. I can't believe she forgot this dinner." Harriet says. "I mean, every year since our dad died, we've been taking her out to dinner on her wedding anniversary, because she's lonely."
"Maybe you'd better talk to her doctor about this." Sofia says.
"You're right, Sofia." Sam says. "I guess I've just been hoping that things would improve by themselves."
"You know, I never thought Ma would lose her memory at all." Harriet sighs. "Of course, I never thought Beyoncé would get on my nerves." She says.
"For real. She is one overrated ho." Bailey states while rolling his eyes.
"I'm gonna go talk to mom." Sam says as he's about to leave the kitchen.
"Me too." Harriet says as the leave the kitchen.
"Ma, can we talk for a minute?" Sam says as he and Harriet sit next to her.
"I'm going through the family album. I thought I'd pay your father a visit." April tells her kids as she looks through her album.
"Look, here we all are! Your sweet sixteen party, right?"
"Right! Look at that beautiful lace dress." Harriet says.
"Yeah, your always did like to make a splash at parties." April says fondly.
"Ah, look! The Jersey shore, summer of......" Harriet exclaims.
"2031. July 2031." Sam says as he looks at the photo.
"Pop sure loved playing with you kids. But why on earth do I look so upset?"
"Oh, Ma, don't you remember?" Sam says.
"Pop was a big fan of Ginuwine's back then. You hated it when he wrote "If you're horny lets do it, ride it, my pony" in the sand, in front of the children. It is truly an awesome song!" Harriet says.
"He was really some character. And it was a good song to-" Sam starts, but April looks at him. "Who are you to judge?"
"Oh, look at us at your birthday party, Sam!" Harriet says.
"Oh, boy, your father sure looked stupid."
"'Stupid?'" Ma, this was one of your favorite pictures." Sam says, looking at his embarrassing Christmas photo.
"Oh, Pop looks so proud." Harriet says.
"The idiot's dressed like an crazy go-go dancer, drunk of wine."
"Remember, we had lot's of fun at that party, wasn't it Sam?"
"We sure did, even if I needed to take my own breathers from everything that happens." Sam says.
"Oh, look, there you are, stirring sauce." Harriet says, pointing at the photo.
"Ah, my old kitchen in Seattle."
"And there are the potholders Grandma made, your pasta maker." Sam supplies.
"Ah, the pantry. I loved that part of the kitchen."
"Remember what Pop kept behind the pantry door?" Harriet asks Sam.
"Yeah, he had a height chart for the both of us, Bailey and his siblings, and Sofia."
"No he didn't. Your father carved a giant heart there that said "Jackson loves April."
"No, Ma, it was our height measurements. He kept track of them on the back of the pantry door." Harriet tells her.
"Stop! Look, that was my kitchen, that was my Jackson, and he put the heart there because he loved me. That I remember!" April snaps at them.
"I'm sure you do." Harriet says sympathetically.
"Listen, Ma why don't we talk to your doctor and see what he has to say, hmm? Just to see that everything is alright with you?" Sam asks.
"Yeah, well maybe." April concedes. "I don't remember half these photos. I honestly don't remember Moline or Seattle." She says as she closes the photo album.
"I'm sorry." Sam says hugging her.
"I don't even remember you going off to your senior prom." She says as she gets up from the couch.
"Ma, I never went to my senior prom." He says. "I had minor complications with this damn OI, remember?"
"Yeah and I had the flu, remember?" Harriet says.
"Actually, I did remember that, but why should I be the only one here to feel like crap?" She says as she is walking away from her kids.
Sam and Harriet simply shake their heads.
"I can't believe she's 85 and feisty." Sam says once their mom is out of ear shot.
Chapter 2: What's With April?
Household Conversation About April
BECAUSE THE SEASON FINALE OF GREY'S ANATOMY REALLY PISSED ME OFF!!!!!!!!!
“Hi.” Sofia says as she enters the house.
“Sofia, I thought you were gonna be working. The deadline is in a couple days.” Bailey tells her.
“You don't think playing three sets of tennis in this heat is work?” She says as she puts her tennis equipment down on a chair leading to the lanai.
“When are you gonna get the survey done?” Bailey asks her. “Because I have to say ‘THE DEADLINE IS IN A COUPLE DAYS!’ you nitwit.”
“Bails, let me explain something to you. Now, in this world, there are two kinds of people. One is an industrious, hardworking, give 100%, pain-in-the-butt-to- everybody-else go-getter. Trust me when I say that I am not one of those people.”
“Gee, I wish I felt better about this.” Bailey sighs at Sofia’s statement.
“Well, I wish you did, too. I feel wonderful.”
“Ugh.” Bailey says as the door opens. “April, Sam, Harriet, how did it go at the doctor's?”
“It was great.” Sam says.
“It really was.” Harriet says as she takes a seat next to Bailey on the couch. “He said that Ma's memory problem could be related to a nutritional imbalance.”
“He did?” Sofia asks them.
“He sure did.” Sam confirms. “So he put her on a special diet, and if she follows it, she'll be fine from here on out.” He finishes as he takes a seat on one of their chairs.
“Oh, lucky me, I can remember from now on.” April says as she sits on Bailey’s other side. “My whole past is gone! I could have slept with George Clooney or Denzel Washington and don't even know it!”
“Ma, I don't think so.” Sam says.
“You're not mentioned in any of the infamous blogs that we love to talk about from ages ago.” Harriet says.
“Well, that doesn't necessarily mean anything.” Sofia says. “Remember when I slept with-”
“Sofia!” Bailey reprimands.
“Ma, come on, now.” Harriet says. “He also said that there are things that you can do that might bring back some of what you've lost.”
“That’s not a bad idea!” Bailey says. “You can go to some old stomping grounds, look at videos.” He suggests.
“That’s not a bad idea.” Sam says. “I mean, we could even talk about the good old days, reminisce with old friends.”
“Honey, you have to look on the bright side.” Sofia says. “Something is always bound to come to you.”
“I've had a lifetime of bright sides.” April says as she gets up from couch. “I'll just have to learn to do without them.” She says as she proceeds to walk towards her room.
“Oh, dammit.” Harriet says. “I hate watching what this is doing to her.”
“Ditto.” Sam says. "It's been hard to take care of her after that debilitating stroke she had six years ago. I hate that it distorted parts of her memory. I hate it."
“I hate watching what it's doing to you.” Sofia says.
“I hate watching those FBI warnings at the beginning of video rentals.” Bailey says. “They could at least make them more entertaining, especially the dull, ugly blue FBI warnings that roll immediately after the end credits at the end of the movie from a Warner Brother’s Home Video.”
Miraculously, the other three agree with him.
Chapter 3: April's Plan
Sofia and Bailey Chat/April's Plan
“Oh, hello, sir. I am conducting a phone survey regarding media arts for the elderly. May I ask your age?” Sofia asks the caller.
“That's not so old! And what's your general opinion on it?”
She pauses again.
“That's good. What would you say is your annual income?”
“Oh, that's very good!” She says as Bailey walks in from the lanai. “Marital status?”
“Oh, I am sorry.” She tells the guy as Bailey walks into the living room. “How long? Two weeks! I'd say it was time you were getting on with your life, honey.” Sofia says with a laugh.
Bailey snatches the phone from her.
“I-” She starts but Bailey cuts her off.
“Thank you very much.” He tells the caller and he hangs up the phone. “Sofia, marital status is not a question on the survey.”
“Well, I'm sorry, Bailey, but I ask a man 50 questions, you can bet your life one of 'em's gonna be, "Are you married?"
“I can't believe it! I just can’t! Haven't you done anything?” He asks her irritably.
“Of course I have. Do you see this big stack right here?” She says as she is motioning to the stack right next to her.
“Yeah. What about it?”
“Well, just behind it is what I have done.” She says pulling a single paper from behind the stack of unfinished surveys. “It's only one survey, but I'm very proud of it.” Sofia says with a huge smile.
“I should've known this was gonna happen.” He says as he glares at her. “You should never work with friends. You're fired!”
“You can't fire me. That's against the law - that's sex discrimination.” She says with a smile on her face.
“Oh.” He says as he starts to walk away from her. “Well, I'll give you one more chance.”
Sofia laughs and he pauses.
“Wait a minute!” He says as he walks back towards her. “You're such a liar! That doesn’t make any sense at all. How is it sex discrimination?”
“That's what I was doing this afternoon when I didn't get this work done.” She smirks at him.
“You are such a hoe.” He says as the kitchen door swings open. “How's April, you guys?”
“I don't know.” Harriet says as she sits on one of the chairs.
“Today's her anniversary. She won't come out of her room.” Sam says.
“I've never seen her like this.” Harriet says. “She is really depressed.”
“Poor April.” Bailey says.
Suddenly, a door slams shut. April is walking down the hallway with a suitcase.
“Au Revoir! Everybody wave goodbye! I'm off to Seattle!” She says as she’s walking to the front door.
“Honey, what are you doing?” Sofia asks.
“I'm going back to the old neighborhood.” April says as she puts her luggage down.
"You're going where?" Harriet asks.
“As Bailey suggested, the doctor said it would help if I stirred up some memories.”
“Ma, you can't go back there alone!” Harriet says.
“No kidding. I'm 85. I walk to the driveway, it's a coin toss whether I get back.” She says sarcastically.” You two are coming with me.”
“We are?” Harriet asks.
“What the hell? One of you paid! I used one of your guys credit card, but you paid!” April tells her kids.
“Look, I can deal with losing some of my memory. If I didn't have to remember what's-his-name over here, I wouldn't care.” April says as she is motioning towards Bailey.
“Well.” He says, somewhat offended.
“But Jackson was the most important person in my life, and scrapbooks aren't doing the trick at all.”
Harriet and Sam look at each other briefly.
“OK, Ma, if this is what you really want to do-” Sam starts, but April cuts him off.
“It's not what I want to do, it's what I have to do.” She says as she sits down next to Sofia. “Guys, today is my anniversary, and I barely remember getting married.” April sighs deeply before she continues. “You know, I hate getting old. You always seem to be losing something. First it's your eyesight. Then people are telling you to turn down the TV set when you can barely hear it. Asking one of you two to make some of my food a little bit spicy. And you could live with that. But this? They're trying to take something from me that I just won't give. I can't let this happen. I can't lose my Jackson. Not again.” She finishes with tears in her eyes.
Chapter 4: Home, Sweet Home
The Avery's Trip Back At Home
“Isn't it good to be back in the old neighborhood, you guys? Watching the kids whack a piñata at the house on the corner?” April says, excitement rushing over her.
“Ma, they were beating a man. That was sort of why I called the police.” Harriet says as Sam is pulling up in their driveway.
“Ah, they were just having a good time.” April says.
“Now, look, Ma, I don't want you to be disappointed if the aunt Kimmie’s grandkids don't let us in.” Sam warns as they exit the car.
“Buenos días.” Their little cousin says.
“Oh, God! José!” Sam says.
“José, what have I told you about- Sam! Harriet! April! How are you?” Kimmie greets them with a hug.
“Aunt Kimmie! We’re fine! How are you doing?” Harriet says.
“Gran, who are they?”
“These fabulous people are our family and the owners of this house.” She tells him. “This is-”
“I'm Sam, this is my sister Harriet and this awesome woman is my mother/ your aunt, Mrs. April Avery. I know this is going to sound odd, but we used to live here many, many years ago, and we were hoping that we could look around - you know, for old times' sake. Would that be possible?”
“Avery? As in Harper Avery? You guys used to live here and your our family?!” José says in total excitement.
“That us.” Harriet says.
“Can you guys tell me stories about your family? Please?” He asks them.
“Well….” Sam says.
“Can they come in Gran?” José asks his mother.
“It is their house, so of course you guys can come in.” Kimmie says.
“Ok, okay. But don't take anything. I'm meeting my friends and I want to show them this awesome house!” José warns them.
“José!” Kimmie snaps.
Sam decides to humor him.
“We appreciate it very much. You see, my mother is having a memory problem. We were hoping that if we looked around the house.”
“There's no need to explain. I have an elderly grandmother myself.”
“You are so lucky that I’m not your mother.” Kimmie tells her grandson as he runs off.
“Thank you!” Harriet yells at her cousin.
“Oh, One more thing.” He tells them.
“Yes?” Sam answers still humoring him.
“Don't take anything.” Their cousin warns them.
“José, you stop that!” His grandmother tells him.
"So how’s everything aunt Kimmie?” Harriet asks her aunt.
“Well, I’m doing the best with what I’ve got with this arthritis, these crazy kids of mine and their kids. How’s Montana?”
“It’s wonderful.” Sam says. “We live with Sofia and Bailey, I’m keeping my OI in check….”
“And I’m a successful doctor.” Harriet says.
“Sam, Harriet, look - my old painting of our family!” She says touching her painting.
“It’s amazing!” José says.
“Oh, God, it still looks the same.” April says before she turns away from it. “And that old window I used to look out of.” She says looking out of the window.
“Oh, Ma, I remember when I was a little girl playing out in the street. I can still hear your voice. "Sam, zip up your pants! Harriet, fix your dress - the whole neighborhood can see your business." Harriet remembers.
“Sounds like me.” April says with a smile.
“Ma, according to José, we don't have too much time.” Sam warns his mother.
“Nonsense! This is your house and you have all the time in the world!” Their aunt tells them. “Take all the time you need.” She reassures them as she exits the dinning room.
“OK, let's get in the kitchen. I want to show you that heart your father carved for me and prove to you I'm not totally crazy.” April tells her children.
“Ma, remember, it's only a carving. Don't put all your eggs in one basket.” Harriet tells her mother.
“Hey, I may be fading, but that's the sweetest thing that man ever did for me.” She says walking to the pantry door. “I know that heart's behind the door.”
She opens the door.
“I can't believe it! They must have sanded it off!” She says, highly offended.
“No, Ma. No, no. See, Ma, it's our height chart. You can see it through the paint. See? “Here's Harriet,” Sam says motioning to the faint line that’s nearly 2/3rds of the door from the bottom. “Bailey,” He says motioning to a line that’s on the middle of the door. “Ellis,” He says just under Bailey’s line. “Zola and Sofia,” He says, motioning to a line about 6” from Bailey’s line. “Me,” He concludes, indicating a line between Harriet’s and Bailey’s line.”
“I could have sworn I would have bet my life on it.” April says, sounding sad.
“Oh, Ma, there are so many memories in this house.” Harriet tells her.
“Don't be so down. You remember the day you brought Daniel back from the hospital when aunt Alice wasn’t feeling well? I was a little upset, because that was the day Pop usually took me to the zoo. Well, it was the racetrack, but he called it the zoo. You kept Phil in this room because it was the warmest room. And I guess I was a little starved for attention, because I remember….” Sam starts.
“Oh, Jackson, isn't he beautiful? A piece of art.” April says as she is cooing at the newborn baby.
"Can we try for another one?” She asks Jackson.
"Yes!" She cheers.
“But what do you have him in Sam and Harriet's hand-me-downs for?”
“So he wears girls' clothes for a while - what's it gonna hurt? Besides, all of Sam’s shirts are dirty.”
Sam and Harriet who are witnessing the encounter start screaming and throwing tantrums.
“Sam, Harriet!” April says in shock, but they are still acting out.
“Jack, do something about your kids.” April says desperately.
“Sam, Harriet, come over here.”
“No!” They scream in unison.
“We know you're upset about the baby, but we need for you to both to be a big boy and big girl. Your mother's had a rough week.” He says as he kneels down to face them. “First, I'm called away, and then your aunt Alice’s baby's delivered by a cabby.”
“Cesarean! Poor Alice! At least the cabby is a retired doctor!” April exclaims.
“Now, I know you think that your cousin Daniel here's taken your place, but he hasn’t. I wanna tell the both of you something that is the truth. I love both you more than anything.” He reassures them.
“Even more than your favorite football team on beer night?” Sam asks.
“Well….” He says playfully
“Daddy!” Sam and Harriet whine.
“OK, even more than that.” He says picking them up.
“Wow! Daddy, I love you!”
“Me too!” Sam says kissing his father’s cheek.
“I love you, too, kiddos.”
“Come on, let's go to the zoo. I got a tip on a giraffe in the sixth race. Heh heh!” He says playfully as he’s carrying his kids out of the kitchen.
“Daddy!” Harriet squeals, while her brother laughs.
“Pop sure taught me a lot about rivalry that day. When we got home I went right over to the baby and said, "I love you, Daniel." No, wait. I wrote it on him.” Sam says.
“And I helped.” Harriet says with a smile on her face.
April sighs heavily and leaves the kitchen, depressed.
Sam and Harriet
simply sadly watch their mother.
Chapter 5: Friendly Chat
Bailey and Sofia's Chat.
"Here you go, Bails." Sofia greets as she enters the kitchen. "Finished my work." She says as she gives him a folder.
Bailey is shocked.
"I see you're shocked. What's on your mind? My stunning beauty?" She asks him.
"Well, turn me upside down and paint me blue! You actually did it! You're actually capable of doing hard work!"
"Well, give me my money." She demands.
"Sofia, look, I'm sorry we fought the way we did, but this work for my class is very important to me, and I was hoping it would be to you, too."
"Well, it wasn't, but it is now."
"It- it is?" A flabbergasted Bailey asks.
"Yeah. How could I help it? After I looked through the paperwork, I realized how expressive media arts can be and how it affects people. It's really something. You know, with movies, some folks have something to create on a daily basis and people rip them of by downloading them and what not. I mean, people ought to write their congressman or something. In fact, I am so touched, when you cut my check, don't make it out to me." A determined Sofia tells him.
"That's- that is actually beautiful, Sofia. You actually have a heart." A touched Bailey tells her.
"Make it out to Keri Knauff my friend." She says with a smug look on her face.
"It's amazing. Just when I thought that you were being sincere about something important, you revert back to your old ways. Underneath that thin veneer, there's an even thinner veneer."
"I'm not gonna declare it as income and let those lazy congressmen have my tax dollars! Screw them all!"
"Sofia, I am not gonna do that."
"Oh. Well, all right, just pay me under the table."
"Oh, sure! I know that you're gonna be there, waiting for that money." He says sarcastically.
"Yes. So I expect my money in eight $50's, three $20's, three $10's, a $5 and $1 bills, alright?" She says as she leaves the kitchen.
"This conceited bitch...." Bailey says. "I'm gonna make Kill The Bitch a traditional birthday party game in three weeks. First victim: Sofia Robbin Sloan Torres."
Chapter 6: April and Jackson
April falls asleep.
"Boy, this room is sure alive with memories." Sam says as they are in the dining room.
"Those were good days." Harriet says.
"I think I'll go up to the bedroom. Jack and I spent our most intimate moments there."
"Ma, is there anything I can do for you?" Harriet asks April.
"Yeah, stay out." April tells them. "You barged in on us enough when you were kids." She says going to her old bedroom.
As April enters her bedroom, she pulls a frame out of her purse and puts it on the night stand. Once it’s on the night stand, she lies down on the bed.
“Jackson, what's going on? I don’t know what’s going on at all. What's wrong with me?”
“You think you got problems?” She hears. “Try being dead.”
“What the-?” April wonders as she starts looking around.
“Hey, babe.” Jackson greets.
“Jackson! Is that you?! Is that really you?!”
“Yup, that’s me.”
“I missed you so much. What the hell are you doing here?”
“Relax. I'm not really here. I'm just a Fig Newton of your imagination.”
“No, but this is your dream, so just go along with it.” He says as he lays next to her.
"Dream? I fell asleep?"
"Yup so be happy that you aren't dead yet."
“Oh, Jackson, it's been so long, I've forgotten how handsome you look.” She says.
“So, how are things?” He asks her.
"How are things?!” She repeats. “Jackson, talk to me. How are you? What's new? What's heaven like? Are George, Charles, Reed, Lexie and Mark alright? Is-”
He smiles at her, caressing her cheek.
“You know, everyone thinks heaven is right above. Actually, it's a little more to the left.” He says, gesturing a little to the left with his hand in the air.
“What's God like? Is he-”
“You know, I never thought I’d say this, but he’s nice. He’s real nice. You should see his car! He’d make my mother jealous. Oh, before I forget, both Charles and Reed send their well-wishes.”
“You fooling around with anybody?
“Of course not.” He reassures her. “But you’ll never guess. Lexie and Mark are totally married and they are hanging out with Derek like there’s no tomorrow. As for Reed and Charles, let’s just say that whenever they aren’t in their own, we are The Three Musketeers.”
“I guess so.”
“I guess so?” April repeats. “You don’t sound too chipper about. What’s wrong?”
“April,” Jackson sighs. “I see from upstairs you've kind of lost your spunk. What's the matter with you, babe?”
“Oh Jackson, I'm slipping. I’m literally slipping away and it's frightening.” She says sadly. “I'm even forgetting you, forgetting the good old days. Everything.”
“And what, I'm supposed to feel sorry for you?” He snorts. “Get real.”
“Well, that'd be a start!” She says, somewhat offended.
“No way. The April Kepner I know is a survivor. She bites the bullet. She doesn’t hide behind personal diaries to help cope with her insecurities, or panics under pressure. The April that I know is competitive - refusing to give up until she wins. She's extremely receptive and notices things that most people would overlook. She is also compassionate and understanding. But the trait that I love most about her is that fact that she seems to be much stronger and more serious about everything when we almost lost Sam. Above all, The April Kepner that I knew, put up with all my faults and difficult ways, but was always there to support me every step of the way. That's why we got married.”
“Plus, you beat out a lot of other women.” He tells her. “That counts for something.”
“Oh, yeah, there was a helluva long line waiting to get to you, Jackson!”
“There was a line remember? It was the eyes that got people, remember?” He smirks and she rolls her eyes.
“What's the name of that girl that you dated after we broke up due to the pregnancy scare? Stephanie?”
“You see? Some things you do remember!” He reassures her. “That’s a start!”
“Yeah, but only some things.” She sighs deeply. “I'm 85, Jack. I don't have the energy for this.”
"Why are you sighing?"
“You have lost your spunk.” He tells her as he gets off the bed. “You know, maybe I don't find you so attractive anymore.”
“What?!” She says in a heartbroken tone as she is getting off the bed.
“You're not my April. You’re not the same April.” He tells her shaking his head. "I wonder how Sarah Richardson and Penny Cairo are doing. Sure, they were my first, but who knows? Maybe they are still interested in me.”
April glares at him.
“What?” Jackson asks her.
“Jackson Avery,” She starts of angrily. “You miserable, wannabe, hood-rat! If you so much as look at another ghost that isn’t me, I swear-”
“See?” He points out to her. “There's the spunk! It's still there. But use it for yourself, not on me.” He says, smiling at her.
“Tell me about the things you remember.” He tells her as he lies back down on the bed.
“Well, where do I start?” She asks, repeating his actions, turning to face him.
“Let’s start with our intern years.” He answers, turning to face her.
Chapter 7: Intern Memories
April and Jackson Stroll Down Memory Lane
“I remember when we introduced ourselves.”
“You were like: “Jackson Avery, originally from Boston. Cardiothoracic all the way. Can I be done now?”
“That does sound like me.” He says. “Short, sweet and to the point.”
“It sure was. I’m pretty sure that I was a hot mess though.”
“You sure were.” He laughs.
“Hey!” She says, playfully punching his arm.
“I remember that day as if it were yesterday, with your little red notebook. It went something like this: "Do you know a Catherine Avery, the urologist?"
“That was an important question to ask.” She states.
“And my response was: "I do, actually. Are you writing this down?"
“I think I remember saying: "She's just, like, amazing. Are you going into urology, too?" Then you said: "No. Cardiothoracic all the way. Can I be done now?
“Then you started to introduce yourself: "I'll go. Hi. I'm April Kepner. I'm from Ohio, and I'm super-excited to be near the ocean, although I don't really know how I feel about the rain yet.
“As far as specialty goes, I'm looking for something with set hours so that I can raise kids eventually two boys and a girl. So I'm thinking plastics, urology, proctology…."
“You captivated me.” He says. “I don’t know why, but you captivated me.”
“What else do you remember about us?”
Chapter 8: Virginity Stories
April's Former Dilema
"I remember when you were making fun of me, for being a virgin." She grimaces. "Damn all of you."
"Now THAT was pretty funny though." Jackson says. "I mean, the beach thing would've worked if you weren't so......"
"Jackson!" April blushes.
"You're still making fun of me!"
"I'm just saying!" He giggles. "Look on the bright side, At least you had the balls to snap at us."
"Are you teasing me or are you proud of me for snapping at you?" She wonders. "It wasn't my fault that the topic came up. I still can't believe that you lost it to two different girls at prom."
"Ahh. Sarah Richardson and Penny Cairo." He sighs.
April huffs. "You are the worst. Why can't you be more serious?"
"Is this a test?" He asks. "Does this sound familiar to you: 'Stop! Okay just stop. I’m a virgin, yes. So what? It’s not something I talk about, okay? We all have things we don’t talk about. Alex, you’ve been afraid of the elevator for like a month, but I never said anything because it’s none of my business. And Jackson, you wake up every night screaming because you have nightmares. And, Meredith, you don’t talk about Cristina because you’re afraid she’s never gonna be the same Cristina again. And Lexie, for God’s sake, Mark never thought you were a psycho. He loves you. That’s why he stares at you. Because he can’t keep his eyes off the woman he loves. Of course, he’s never gonna say anything cause he doesn’t feel like he can. Well, we all have stuff we don’t talk about! I am a 28-year-old virgin. Mainly because I wanted my first time to be special and then I waited too long and partially because I’m pretty sure guys find me annoying. I’m a virgin! That doesn’t make it drinks conversation! We all have stuff we don’t talk about!'
"You remember what I said? That was decades ago!" She says.
"Well, I was surprised, but very proud of you for standing up to us." He says genuinely. "Besides, you shut us all up and got everyone's respect."
"Just one question though, babe."
"What's that?" April wonders.
"How come we never had sex on the beach, at sunset? I mean, we wouldn't have died." He jokes.
"Shut up!" April says, laughing at her husband.
Chapter 9: Who Is April?
April Tells Gary A Bit About Herself
“The shooting.” April says after a few minutes of silence.
“What?” Jackson asked her.
“I was so scared when that gunman was at that hospital.” April says. “We were really screwed up for a while.”
“We sure were. I thought I had it together, but man, we were checked out for a while.”
“I know.” She tells him.
“How were you able to get away from him?”
“My life story.”
“My name...my name is April Kepner. I'm 28 years old, and I was born on April 23rd in, in Ohio. I'm from C-Columbus. Columbus, Ohio. Um, my mom, my mom is a teacher, and m-my dad is a farmer. Corn. C-corn. He, he, he grows corn. Their, their names are Karen and Joe. I have three sisters! Libby's the oldest. I, I'm next, and then there's K-Kimmie and Alice. I, I, I haven't done anything yet. I haven't...I've barely lived! I, I'm not finished yet. No one's loved me yet. Please. Please. I'm someone's child! I'm a person! I'm a person!" She says."That's what I told him."
“I know that people grieve, but that was just horrible! I still can’t believe that he shot….that was hard.”
“At least he killed himself.” Jackson says nonchalantly.
“I know you disagree with it, but come on! I say he’s getting what he deserves.”
“And to think that you’re in heaven.” She says, shaking her head at him.
Chapter 10: Hugs
“Hmm.” She ponders. “I got one!”
“Lay it on me.” Jackson encourages.
“I remember as residents, we were complaining about Mark and Owen being hard on us.”
“I remember that too. Man, if we were lucky enough to look into the future, our complaints back then were nothing compared to dealing with Sammy’s OI. Now that was a bitch, but we survived it.”
“I was referring to that stupid joke about me “dying a virgin” in that hallway.”
“Aren’t you happy that you don’t die a virgin? I mean, we made good looking kids.” Jackson tells her.
“I can’t believe that I hugged you out of nowhere. Hugging you in the hallway, remembering when I slipped in Reed’s blood.”
“That was hard.”
“Yeah. You know what else I remember?”
“You defending my honor because of Alex.”
Jackson chuckles at that.
"I had to defend my woman's honor."
"We weren't even a thing yet." She reminds him.
"So what's your point? You were still my person, remember?"
"Point and match." She says after a brief moment.
"Yes! Score one for Jackson Avery!" He says.
“Question. About Sloan.” She says.
“Ask away, babe.”
Chapter 11: Sexual Encouragement
Mark Sloan's Advice
"Did you know that I got some sexual encouragement just before our boards from Sloan?"
"What?" Jackson laughs.
"Sexual encouragement." April repeats.
"Stop lying. That's not from Sloan. Where did that come from?"
"Not where. It's who?"
"Fine. Who did that come from?"
"I repeat: It's from Sloan."
“And what is it that he said to you?”
"You're an attractive woman." He tells me.
"And what did you say?" Jackson asks her.
"Who? Uh, me?"
"Of course you would." Jackson smirks.
"God, Jackson, you're so stupid." She says feigning laughter.
"I know." He replies cheekily. "So what did my mentor tell you?"
"You and Avery spend a lot of time together, don't you?" He wonders. Naturally, I was clueless about sex at that time so I said, "We do, yes. Uh, but we're just study buddies. I mean, we're not, you know..."
"Boy you were clueless." Jackson agrees.
"Shut up." April says. "Anyway, your mentor proceeded to say, "He's an attractive guy, nice bone structure, hypnotic eyes, etcetera."
"Man, he was checking me out? I don't know whether I'm thrilled that he was checking me out or just plain creeped out." Jackson states.
"I guess so?" She says, repeating her words from her conversation with Sloan long ago.
"What does that mean?"
"Exactly what it means." April says half-amused and half-mysteriously.
"What happened next?"
"If I can remember correctly, I think he said, "Have you noticed how uptight he's been lately?"
"I was uptight?" Jackson asks.
"Well, you were." She says. "Those boards were no joke. I still can't believe that I failed, but that's beside the point. You were equally as uptight as I was."
"No wonder he was wondering when was the last time I had sex."
"Oh, why did I have to go and bring this up?" April wonders.
"So what did you say?"
"Uh, l-like I said, we're study buddies, so..."
"So..." Jackson repeats.
"Study buddies should help each other out, relieve some of that stress. Maybe extend that buddy relationship." She says, repeating Sloan's sentiments.
"Extend?" A confused Jackson asks her.
"Exactly! I was like, "Extend? Um... I-I don't..."
"And what happened after? What did he say?"
"You're two attractive people. Any thoughts on how to alleviate that stress?"
"We are attractive people." Jackson says. "Look at our kids. So what was your answer?"
"We could ... we could go for more walks?"
"Those would've been helpful. Why didn't we do that?" Jackson asks.
"Beats me. But Sloan told me that, "Walks are good. Walks are nice. I was thinking, since you're already study buddies, you could extend that relationship... become the other kind of buddies."
"Aah. I see where this is going. And how did you freak out?"
"I was flabbergasted! I remember saying something along the lines of, "Are you...are..."
Jackson starts laughing.
"Stop it, Jackson Avery!" She whines.
"I'm sorry, but that is just too funny!" He tells her. "So what was his answer?"
"I am." April tells Jackson. "He said it so damn nonchalantly."
Jackson laughs even harder.
"Anyway, I was so shocked that all I could say was, "Y... Dr. Sloan!" And do you know what he told me?"
"What did he tell my little April Kepner, Queen of Good Quality Pork?"
"Well, we did win." Jackson tells her.
"Even in my dreams, you're still crazy as hell."
"I try, I try."
"I couldn't help but say, "Th-this is sexual harassment. You know that, right?"
"Only my pretty little woman."
"He didn't even think of it as sexual harassment."
"Then how did he think of it?"
"I think of it as sexual encouragement. Think about it, Kepner. Take one for the team."
"What?" Jackson chuckles.
"Yup. And he said it with a smile on his face, putting a thumb up for encouragement as I started walking away from him."
"That's my mentor!" Jackson says with a huge smile on his face. "I'm very happy that I ended up taking his advice."
"You and your mentor are both crazy."
"Maybe, but didn't you eventually take his advice?"
"Ahhhh, you remember that too?" She smiles.
Chapter 12: San Fransisco
Bar Room Brawls, Hotel Rooms and Restrooms. Oh My!
“Well, going to San Francisco was pretty interesting.” Jackson tells her.
“In what way?” Aprils asks him.
“For starters, I never expected you to fight in a bar.” He smirks.
“You remember that too?”
“Picture it as if I were a person watching this on TV.” He tells her.
“We're falling apart.” April says as she and Jackson are at the bar.
Jackson eats his meal while she is nursing her glass of wine.
“Meredith's sick and Alex - What the hell was he thinking?” She asks in disbelief as she lifts the glass to her mouth.
“Mnh-mnh.” Jackson says as he is lifts his fork and waves it around like a wand, prepared to give his person a pep talk. “See, you gotta put all that out of your head. Okay? Concentrate on your own game.”
“I'm a soldier.” She says as she regains her composure after putting her drink down.
“Nothing.” She says as she shakes her head. “Hey, but we're still standing, right?”
“Hell, yeah, we are.” He says in agreement giving her a small smile.
“Me and you.” He says.
“Me and you.” She repeats.
They hear some obnoxious person laughing and they both turn around and see this guy a few tables from where they are seated.
“Who is that?” He asks, digging into his food after turning away from him.
“Oh, that's the guy who thinks I stole his job.” She says as she turns away from the guy. “He hates me.”
“So what? He's a douche.” Jackson says as he turns around. “Ah, and here he comes.”
April turns around.
“Nah, dude, just don't.” The guy’s friend says, following him. “Just sit down.”
“No, no, I-I want to apologize.” He says to April. “I was a tool this afternoon. No hard feelings?” He says, as he holds out a hand for April to shake.
Jackson watches the exchange.
“Sure, yeah.” She says, shaking his hand. “No problem. No problem at all. I'm sorry.”
“You have nothing to be sorry for.” He tells her.
April looks at Jackson .
“I mean, best man wins and all that stuff, right? Or woman, whatever.” The guy says.
“Yeah, he's had a few beers.” The guy’s friend tries to explain to them. “You know what? And he got bad news today, so we'll just-”
“All I'm saying is, obviously, she can offer something that I can't offer.” The guy says.
“All right.” Jackson says. “Everybody's a little wound up, all right? So big day tomorrow, maybe you should, um, go sleep it off.”
“Are you the boyfriend?” The guy asks Jackson . “You know, you should watch out next year, 'cause, uh, Ted Stevenson likes himself a redhead.”
“All right.” Jackson says as he’s standing up from his seat. “Okay, Kevin. I think you can leave.”
“Or maybe you found that out already. Is that how you got the job?”
April snaps. She turns around and punches the guy.
“Oh!” April says as she brings he fist back.
“Ohh! Whoa.” The guy says. “Bitch!”
Jackson, who’s currently tending to April, turns to the guy.
“Hey, look, you need-”
The guy punches him.
“Really?” Jackson asks Kevin.
“You want to go?” Kevin asks him.
To Jackson’s surprise, April turns to the guy.
“Yeah, bitch! I want to go!” She pounces on the guy.
“Stop!” Jackson yells as he’s pulling April off of Kevin.
“Yeah, you want more of this?!” April asks Kevin as Jackson is blocking her path from getting to Kevin. “'cause I got more!”
“Shut your big mouth, all right?” Kevin tells her.
“Oh, yeah, it goes with my big brain, dumb ass!” April yells back.
“What?” A confused Jackson asks her.
“That's why I got your job next year!” April continues on with her rant.
She pulls away from him and manages to hit Kevin.
“Ugh!” She grunts.
“Enough!” A commanding voice booms.
Jackson pulls April away from Kevin for the second time.
“Now if anyone is still here in 30 seconds, you're barred from the test. Now get!” Webber yells.
The patrons scatter.
“That was not our fault, okay? These case western reserve guys,” Jackson tries to explain.
“What are you doing here?!” April asks Webber overlapping Jackson’s-
“- they started the whole-”
“What am I doing here?” He asks incredulously. “What are you doing here?”
“We just came down here to get something to eat and-” April explains truthfully, but Webber cuts her off.
“No, I thought you were here to prove that the considerable amount of money spent training you wasn't wasted, that the dreams you had of becoming surgeons won't vanish in a puff of smoke tomorrow when the examiner asks you a question and you can't answer it because instead of getting a good night's sleep, you were engaging in a barroom brawl.” He tells her.
“We should probably go.” Jackson says.
“We should go.” April says scurrying off.
“Good night, chief.” Jackson tells him, following April.
“Okay, night, chief.” She says as she starts giggling.
“Oh, my god.” She says laughing as they are reaching her hotel room.
“Oh, my god.” He repeats.
“That was amazing.” She says excitedly.
“You just punched a guy.” He says, shocked.
“I punched a guy!”
“You were freakin' crazy in there.” He tells a giggling April.
“ Jackson , we are gonna do this.” She says, turning to look at him. “I-I-I can feel it. I- this is our last night as residents.” She says opening the room door.
“No, stop that! You just stop doubting yourself.” She says shaking his shoulders. “We freakin' kicked that guy's ass in there. We are gonna kick this test's ass.”
“How come you're so confident all of a sudden?” He asks her with a smile on his face.
“I'm a soldier.” She says waving her hands around.
“Yeah, I still don't know what that means, but- Mm.” She shuts him up with a kiss.
“April.” He says in-between kisses.
“Should I not have done that?”
She kisses him again.
“If you want me to stop, just say so, and I'll stop.” She says in-between kisses.
“I just- you're- The way you're kissing me right now,” He says breathlessly as he pulls away from the kiss. He lifts his head and says. “You're a virgin. You're a virgin.”
“Yes, because my whole life since I was a kid, I had this idea of how my life was supposed to be, these rules that I was supposed to follow, but I'm not a kid. I'm not the same person I was when I started my residency. I just punched a guy.” She says bringing her face closer to his. “And it felt really good. And if something feels really, really good, it can't be bad, right?”
He stares at her, dumbfounded.
“ Jackson, hey.” She says. “It's okay. Really. It's okay.”
They kiss each other passionately before heading into the room and shutting the door.
April is currently on top of Jackson, simply making out for a moment before she rolls off of him. Once she’s on her side of the bed, she starts laughing to herself. She’s no longer a virgin.
”Hey. That was really great.” He says, basking in the moment.
“Yeah. Yes. Yes. Yes, that was.” She says, laughing.
“You were great.” He tells her. “I mean, are you, uh- Are you glad we did that?”
“Yeah.” She says. She turns to look at him for a quick second. “Yeah.”
He props himself up on his left arm and looks at April.
“So you're okay?” He asks her.
“Yeah, I'm fine.” She tells him, still breathing heavily. “I'm just tired.”
“Yeah.” He says nodding his head, still looking at her.
“You should get some sleep.” She says as she turns to look at him.
“Yeah, I should get some sleep.” He says, lying back down. “Here or-”
“Yeah.” She tells him. “Yeah. Or -or you could go.”
They stay in complete silence for a few seconds.
“Don't you have to get your pencil?” She asks him.
“It's the middle of the night.” He tells her. “Yeah.”
“Right.” She says and they both laugh.
“But you know what? I could go if you want.” He says, sitting up as he looks at her. “Yeah. You know what? I'll go. You can get some sleep.”
“You sure you're okay?”
“I'm great.” She says as she looks at him.
“I'll see you tomorrow.” He says with a smile on her face.
He kisses her and gets out of the bed.
Jackson spots April sitting in a chair in the hallway.
“Good luck.” He tells her but she doesn’t respond.
“April?” He wonders. “Come on. You're not even gonna look at me or-”
“No.” She says turning to face him. “No, it's not you, Jackson . It's- it's Jesus.”
He simply stares at her.
“I was a virgin because I love Jesus. And now Jesus hates me.”
Jackson looks at her, with a loss for words.
“April Kepner.” The mediator calls.
She composes herself.
“Hi.” She says walking over to the exam room as Jackson watches her walk away.
A door opens.
“Jackson Avery.” Another mediator calls.
“Here.” He says after a moment. He stands up and moves to shake the mediators hand when suddenly his lucky pencil falls out of his hand and-
Jackson looks at the broken pencil and looks up at the guy.
“Sorry.” The guy says as he walks back into the room.
Jackson simply looks at the broken pencil before buttoning up his coat and walking into the exam room.
“What do you think?” Jackson asks.
“I think we’re crazy.”
“Sure you do but do you remember what happened in that bathroom?”
“Well….” She starts as she is about to tell him her side of the story.
April is currently in the men's room, trying to calm herself down, but it isn't working.
"If you don't mind, it is a men's room." As one of the men inform her as Jackson walks into the restroom.
"What? What?!" She yells, throwing her hands up in frustration. "You're supposed to be doctors. I've seen your things. You've seen mine. It's all just flesh and cartilage. Get over it!"
The men starts exiting the restroom as Jackson watches the scene.
"Ugh!" She groans in frustration as she lifts her blouse up to the hand dryer.
"Oh, hey, Jackson." She says nervously. "How's it going?"
"Not so good." He automatically spits out. "You?"
"I am dying in there." She says as she throws her blouse on the ground. "I am actually failing." She says hysterically as she's pacing like crazy in the restroom.
"You, too? 'cause mine is a total fiasco." He tells her, freaking out himself.
"They think I'm insane!" She says throwing arms up in the air.
"Oh, they're toying with me." He says putting his hand on his chin, pacing back and forth.
"I am self-destructing into a puddle of sweat." She says motioning to her whole body standing by the hand dryer. "I don't know what's wrong with me."
"Oh, I know exactly what is wrong with me and I still can't reel it in." He tells her as she starts pacing again.
"I broke my promise to Jesus and now I can't even talk to him a-and I need him."
Jackson stops pacing and stares at her.
"He's the only one who can calm me down!" She says as she is freaking out.
"Why the hell did you do it? Why'd you let me?" He demands.
"I don't know!" She yells back.
"You said it was okay!"
"I know!" She yells.
"I knew you'd regret it!"
"Stop yelling! Why are you yelling at me?!"
"Because I'm all messed up now, too!" He says walking over to her. She leans on the counter of the restroom sink. "I mean, what am I? I'm-I'm now the guy that made you break your promise to Jesus? I am not that guy! All right? That guy is gross. Okay? It's all very unbecoming, especially for an Avery."
"What?" She asks incredulously as he stops pacing around. "Are you are you honestly comparing breaking my promise to Jesus with putting a tiny dent in your family crest?"
He thinks for a moment as he looks at her.
"You're right." He says as he stands near a stall. "You're right, and I'm sorry. My mom is the examiner in the room right next to mine. It's throwing me."
"I know." He says as he's motioning to a random spot in the restroom with his hand. "It's-it's I'm worried about my mom and what she's gonna think if I fail. It's pathetic." He says as he leans against the stall of the door. "Right?"
"No." She says shaking her head. God, no, Jackson. It's not pathetic. That's the most important relationship in your life."
Jackson stares at her as she takes a deep breath.
"The problem isn't that I broke my promise. That's not the problem." She tells him.
He stares at her.
"The problem is-" She says as she looks away from him for a moment. She looks back at him and continues with her thought. "The problem is-"
"That it felt good." He finishes.
"It felt good." She repeats as she is looking at him.
"I shouldn't have taken advantage." He says as he walks away from the stall.
"Taken advantage?" She chuckles. "What?"
"Oh, we should we should go." He says shifting his weight from one foot to another before he walks away from her.
"Taken advantage? I kissed you, remember?"
He pauses just as he places his hand on the door handle, getting ready to exit the restroom.
"Yeah, but I kissed you back." He tells her.
"Yeah, but then I unbuttoned your shirt." She says as Jackson starts to look back at her.
She turns to look at him.
"Yeah, and then I pulled up that skirt." He says, eyeing her.
"Yeah, but then I kissed your neck." She tells him.
He moves to the door and he locks it.
"Yeah. And then I took off your shirt." He says as he's walking towards her.
"And I But then I unbuckled your belt." She says as he stands infront of her. "And then I slipped my hand up your back." He says as he slips his hand up on her back.
"And I wrapped my arms around your neck." She says as she wraps her arms around his neck.
He places her on the counter of the restroom sink and stands between her legs.
"And then I-" He whispers against her lips.
"Then you-" She says running her hands on his suit top.
"Then I-" He says as he looks into her eyes.
They kiss each other passionately as if they were starving.
She wraps her arms around his torso as he carries her into the stall with one arm.
Once inside the stall, she closes the door.
“Damn, that was quite a sexual awakening you had.” Jackson tells her.
“Like I said, it felt good.”
Chapter 13: The Proposal
The Flash Mob Proposal
"Is mom alright?" Sam asks as he's taking his medication.
"I'll go check." Harriet says as she make sher way to the room.
"Alright." Sam responds.
"Mom?" Harriet calls out as she knocks on the door. "Are you alright in there?"
She opens the door and finds her mom turning on her side, dead asleep.
"I'll take that as a yes." Harriet says as she turns away and closes the door.
"Ahh." Jackson says as he remember's that proposal all to well.
"It was amazing." April gushed.
"Even I will admit defeat and give him props for that. That was very amazing!"
"What do we got?" April asks Nicole, the paramedic as she walks towards the patient on the gurney.
“A 48-year-old male complaining of tightness in his chest.” Nicole replies as April is examining the patient. “He says he feels like his heart is gonna burst.”
“All right, sir, we're gonna take care of you, okay?” April reassures the man as they are moving towards the entrance of the hospital.
As they are moving towards the doors, the man starts ‘having’ seizures.
“Is he seizing?” April asks the paramedics as music starts playing in the vicinity.
The paramedics take the bar of the gurney away from April and they start spinning the gurney around.
“Was there a head injury involved?” April asks and she spins around. “Uh, what is that music?”
“I’m Gonna Be” by The Proclaimers is blasting somewhere from the vicinity.
Suddenly, the man sits up on the moving gurney.
“Brrr.” The old man says.
“Um, sir, no.” April says as she tries to get the patient under control.
The old man gets off of the gurney and stands inbetween Nicole and the other paramedic.
“Um, you probably don't wanna get off of that if you don't…..uh-” April says but the paramedic duo and the old man start dancing.
Suddenly, Nicole grabs April and starts to pull her away.
“Nicole, what are you doing? What is what are you doing?” April asks but Nicole doesn’t answer her.
People start coming out of the paramedic and from other parts of the hospital.
Nicole leads April to a seat, which April takes.
“Nikki? What are you what are you doing?” April wonders.
The mob of people starts dancing in sync with each other while April moves her seat in amazement.
Even the hospital workers start to come out from their stations.
“Oh, hi. Scott? Wait? What?” April says, confused as she covers her face with her hands.
April laughs happily.
“What is going on?” Cristina asks as she stands next to Arizona.
April’s still laughing like crazy as the people are dancing all around her.
“Melissa!” April exclaims as Arizona starts with-
“I'm-” With a smile on her face.
Matthew starts running down the stairs.
April spots him as Nicole and a few others spin her chair around.
Matthew joins the dancers and starts dancing in front of a laughing, but happy, April and the crowd he’s with.
“Oh, Matthew! Oh, my God!” She laughs out loud.
“They're everywhere.” Meredith says as she stands next to her husband, who’s currently smiling himself.
April stands up from her chair and two people men pick her up.
“Aah! Oh, God! It's so high!” She says through her laughter.
Nonetheless, they pick her up and she’s sitting on their shoulders.
“Oh! Oh, sorry.” She says as she is carried off to Matthew.
He hugs her as she’s laughing and he places her back in her seat.
“Who'd have thought Kepner would've found somebody as dorky as she is?” Alex asks as he is standing in-between his twisted sisters.
April is still laughing her head off as Matthew is pushing a small table with a rose in a vase on it.
“He is like the male Kepner.” Meredith states. “What are the odds?”
Alex smiles, a bit.
As the mob is still dancing, Matthew takes the flower out of the vase and hands it to April, who gladly accepts it.
They all surround April as the song continues until the song finishes.
The whole vicinity starts clapping (except for Cristina, who’s currently sporting a disgusted look as Meredith laughs and points at her) and Matthew takes his bow, right in front of April.
“All right, April!” Someone cheers.
“Oh, my God.” April says as the applause starts to die down.
“Uh, April, I know that this seems crazy.” Matthew starts off, as he’s regaining his breath.
“This is totally crazy! What?” A happy April exclaims as she’s still laughing.
“And to some, sudden……” Matthew starts off somewhat nervously. “But when I know something, I know it.”
April stares at him with a huge smile on her face as if the world had just stopped.
“When I first saw you standing in this doorway I felt a shock.” Matthew tells her seriously as April laughs.
Arizona looks at Callie, with a somewhat sad expression on her face.
The other doctor turns and sends a smile Arizona’s way.
Arizona notices and turns away to catch a glimpse of Callie before she turns away.
“And, uh, and I thought this is the most beautiful person that I've ever seen. And then I thought yeah, well, no, I I knew that I was gonna fall in love with you.” Matthew tells April.
“Oh, God.” April exclaims as she is starting to tear up.
She covers her mouth as she’s looking at him.
“And I have never been so happy knowing anything in my entire life.” Matthew says.
“Oh, my-” April cries as Nicole hands Matthew the ring box.
“Oh, my God! Oh, my God!” April cries as she’s covering her mouth with her hands.
The vicinity laughs.
Matthew gets down on one knee.
“April Kepner.” He starts as the doctors are all smiling and laughing, proud of their little April Kepner.
“Wow!” Cristina exclaims as Meredith is being pulled in by Derek.
“I love you, and I want to spend the rest of my life trying to make you as happy as you make me-” Matthew states.
“Oh, my God.” April cries.
“-if you'll let me.” He finishes.
He opens the box.
“Will you marry me?” He asks as most of the people in the vicinity coos at the cute moment.
“Yes.” April responds shakily (due to her tears and voice), with a huge smile on her face. “Yes.”
The dancers throw rose petals over the couple as she pulls Matthew in for a kiss.
April stands up from her seat and is still kissing Matthew.
The crowd is still cheering them on as petals are still falling on them.
“It was beautiful!” Someone yells out to them.
“Way to go, Matthew!” Another one yells out as Matthew picks April up and spins her around.
“Many happy years!” A woman supplies.
“All right, Matthew!” A man supplies.
Matthew breaks the kiss and puts April down.
Jackson, who was watching the whole encounter, is looking directly at them. April’s huge smile falters a little, as if she’s worried about something. Jackson simply smiles at her and just claps for the couple and smiles at April. April’s smile returns as she’s laughing.
Chapter 14: Conversation
Jackson vs. Matthew
"You know, he talked to me after? You know, later that night." Jackson tells her.
"He did?" A surprised April asks.
"Hey." Matthew greets as he walks up to Jackson, who's currently writing something on the OR board. "Never saw it coming, right?"
"What's that, the storm?" Jackson asks as he turns around.
"No." Matthew says with a small smile. "April. I was sure someone would let it slip."
Jackson still looks at him.
"And have you, uh, seen Dr. Hunt?"
"No, no." Jackson replies as he looks around the busy hospital. "What's up? I-"
"Nothing." Matthew says. "I'd- would you tell him thanks, though? I had him keep April out of surgeries all day."
Jackson nods his head. He understands.
"This was kind of my only shot at this. Didn't wanna miss it." Matthew tells him.
"No, no, you didn't." Jackson says as he 'sports a smile' Matthew's way. "Congratulations, both of you guys."
"Thanks." Matthew says as he exits the hospital lobby.
Jackson simply stares after Matthew.
"You were civilized to him?" A shocked April asks.
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"Well, you only seemed civilized when the three of us were together. It's just....strange that you were civilized when I wasn't around."
Jackson thought about this for a moment.
"Point taken." He tells her.
Chapter 15: Perfect Storm
Rainy Nights and Bus Explosions
"Matthew! What are you doing here?" April asked her fiancee.
"My rig stalled out in the river that used to be Pike Street." He tells her as he enters the hospital. "I walked the rest of the way here. How can I help?"
"Grab some blankets." Owen says as he appears out of nowhere.
"Man, Matthew is too easy." Jackson tells April.
"Shut up." April tells him.
"Come on! You can't deny that he was a push over."
"He was a nice man, with a good heart."
"Yeah, yeah, yeah." Jackson tells her. "Now, back to the story of April Kepner."
"Oh my God!" Callie says as the bus just crashed and landed onto it's side.
The bus slides a little bit more until it comes to a stop. It catches on fire.
"Oh my-" April says. She and several other doctors rush outside.
"Hurry!" Someone yells.
"I smell gas." April says.
"There's a gas leak somewhere." Matthew says.
"We were coming from the church," A man says as Jackson is helping him up. "-trying to wait out the storm."
"Careful." Jackson says as he's helping the man."
"The roof, it caved in on us. We had nowhere else to go." He tells Jackson.
"We've got to get everyone away from this fire!" Owen yells out to his colleagues.
"Easy. Easy." Matthew tells one of the victims.
"All right, if you can walk, let's get you inside! This way!" April tells the man as it's raining heavily.
"We're gonna need to setup an emergency triage inside." Owen says over the rain. "We're gonna need meds. Bailey, can you handle this?"
"Y-yeah." Bailey says hesitantly. "Uh, Murphy!"
"We gotta move, Hunt. This thing's gonna blow." Callie says as she is pushing a patient in a wheelchair in the hospital.
"Avery, hurry up!" Owen bellows.
"I got one more. She's jammed between two seats." Jackson says as he's pointing at a random spot in the bus that he's currently in. "Help me get her out."
Owen quickly moves to help Jackson out as their peers are scrambling quickly.
"Where are Hunt and Avery? That fire's getting bigger." Callie says as April is checking out the patients that are currently waiting for pain medication.
Suddenly, Bailey and Murphy appear.
"Where are the pain meds?" April asks Bailey. "I got a patient in pain over here."
"I-I tried to get the meds. The machine, it it won't open without power. I can't get it to open." Bailey tells her.
"All right. Never mind that." Callie reassures her. I've got at least two open fractures and some nasty lacerations...."
Bailey zones out for a moment as she looks at the patients.
"You want to jump in over there?" Callie asks her.
"I-I don't, uh Uh, you need meds." Bailey says.
April gives Callie an alarmed look.
"I'll figure out the meds. Murphy." Bailey says as she turns away to scour for the meds.
Murphy simply gives April and Callie a confused look before she follows Bailey.
Callie gives April an un-amused look.
"Bailey sure was a mess." Jackson says.
"God bless her soul."
"Hello? She was called 'The Nazi' remember?"
"She was still our mentor, you heathen."
"Point taken. Now it's time for my part of the story."
"Smell that? There's gas everywhere." Jackson tells an woman of some Asian decent as he's waving his flashlight around.
"I have a daughter. She's 3. Have have you seen her? Is she okay?" She asks Jackson, in total panic.
"All right, I'm gonna have to wrap this arm to stop the bleeding." He says, starting to tend to her wounds as Owen is looking at her other wounds.
"No, no, she's wearing pink high-tops." She tells Jackson as she looks at him. "Her name is Evelyn. I call her Evie."
"Everyone's inside, ma'am. I'm sure that she's there." Owen tells her.
"If we can move this thing even an inch, I think we can get her out of here." Jackson tells Owen.
Owen looks out the bus for a quick moment before he turns back to Jackson.
"Let's do it fast."
Both men start to pull her out from some of the debris.
"Pull her out. Pull her out."
"All right, go, go." Jackson says. They pull until Jackson manages to get her out of the debris.
"I got her." Jackson says.
"Ah." The woman says in despair.
"All right, we're gonna walk you out through the door." Owen tells her. "We're gonna you're gonna have to walk-"
"No, no, no, no. My leg, my leg." She says in complete pain. "I can't."
Owen can see the pain in the woman's eye.
He looks at Jackson and Jackson looks back.
Jackson looks up and sees a window.
He looks back at Owen, who nods his head.
Jackson bends and picks up a rod.
"Ma'am I'm gonna need you to cover your eyes, all right?"
Owen shields the woman's head and turns his head away too.
"Ready? Here we go." Jackson says.
He hits the glass once, and it shatters.
"Stay down." He says as the glass falls. Once the glass falls, it's safe to get out from the opening.
"All right." He says.
"You broke the glass?" April asks in complete awe.
"Why the tone of surprise?"
"Cause you're weird." April tells him.
Jackson tickles her and she laughs like crazy.
"Back to the story." She says once she regains her composure.
"This thing's a ticking time bomb!" Owen says as they place the woman on a gurney.
"Come on. Come on. Come on. Come on." Callie chants.
"Almost there. Done." Jackson says. "All right. Let's go."
As they are moving the patient, Jackson looks back and he stops.
He notices the high-top shoe.
"Start a large-bore I.V." Owen says.
"Where's Jackson?" April yells as she runs outside.
"Right behind us." Callie tells her as she and Owen are going inside.
"No, he's not!" April tells her.
None of them notice that he's on the ground waving his flashlight in the bus.
"Hey. Your name is Evie, right?" He asks as soon as he spots the girl.
She doesn't respond.
"I like your shoes, Evie. Those are really cool. Bet you can run pretty fast in those, huh?" He asks Evie as he indicates at her right shoe.
"Hey, you want to race? I bet I could beat you. Come on. Just grab my hand. We can go right now. Come on. Here, take my hand."
"What happened? Can you see him?" April asks.
"Wait, is that him behind the bus?" Callie asks as soon as she spots him.
"Avery!" Owen exclaims.
"Jackson!" Callie yells out.
"Avery, come back here!" Owen yells.
April starts running.
"Evie!" The woman yells.
"Why is he-" April yells as she's running.
"Avery, get back here!" Owen yells.
"April!" Callie yells.
"What is he doing?!" April yells.
"No, no, no! It's too dangerous." Matthew tells her as he catches her.
The bus explodes.
Matthew and April fall to the ground.
"Jackson! Jackson!" April yells out as she get to her feet. "No! No!"
Matthew gets on his feet.
Suddenly after an agonizing wait, they can see a shadow.
From the smoke, Jackson emerges.
He's carrying Evie. Like a boss.
April is shocked.
So shocked that she can't close her mouth.
Jackson walks past her as Matthew walks up behind her.
"Evie?" The mom says as she sits up on the gurney. "Evie!"
She reaches out for her daughter.
"Oh, God, baby." She sobs as Jackson hands Evie over to her.
April is still in a daze as she walks back inside the hospital.
"Thank you so much. Thank you." The woman tells Jackson as she sobs.
He nods his head.
April is still shaking like crazy as she is about to break down in tears.
"I still can't believe you did that!" April says as she hits him.
"Again with the hitting?"
"Yes! Because you almost died that night! If you had died, then I probably would've been trapped in a bad marriage."
"Will you stop hitting me? Your hits still hurt."
"Damn right it's a dream. My dream, so I can hit you as many times as I want."
"So hitting me after the explosion wasn't enough?"
"Hold it right there." Callie tells Jackson as he's on the bed. "Hold it right there for me."
Jackson sits still as Callie gets the necessary equipment to fix Jackson.
"You idiot!" April yells as she's running into the room.
"Hey! - Ow! Don't -" Jackson says, but April hits him, relentlessly.
"You you could have -" April says as she continues to hit Jackson.
"April-!" Jackson says, but he doesn't get any other word out.
"Hey, Kepner." Callie says as she blocks Jackson from April's attacks.
"Died!" April says as she tries to get past Callie. "You-"
"Stop." Jackson says as Callie successfully stops April.
"Kepner, what is your problem?" Callie asks her.
April is about to move towards Callie until-
"Hey! Kepner, take a walk." Callie tells a scared April. "Take a walk!"
Jackson simply looks on as Matthew is witnessing the whole ordeal.
April, who realizes what she's done, flees from her colleagues and runs past Matthew.
Matthew turns around and simply watches her run. He then turn to look at Jackson, who looks away from him as Callie wraps his arm up in gauze.
Jackson, whose lying in his bed in the dark, doesn't expect anything or anyone. That is until the curtains slide open.
She slides the curtains so that they can closed.
She turns around.
"Don't." He tells her as she walks up to him. "Whatever it is that's bugging you, just keep it to yourself, all right?"
She stops walking and stays quiet for a moment.
He shrugs as he is waiting for her to say something.
"I want you Jackson." April tells him.
'Did I mishear her?' He wonders.
"I want you." She says as she's fidgeting.
"I haven't been fair to you, I know, and I've I've really hurt you." She tells him as she gets closer to him.
"And you're getting married."
"When that bus exploded, and I thought you were gone-" She says while motioning to a spot in the room before she covers her mouth with her right hand.
"You're getting married." He repeats.
She removes her hand from her mouth and looks directly at him.
"Unless you can give me a reason not to?"
He leans back.
"You know, that proposal really threw me off guard." Jackson tells her.
Chapter 16: April and Matthew
What Jackson Didn't Know
'Of course you would.' April thinks to herself as she's smiling.
"Why are you smiling?"
"Cause you are a bit.....hard to convince at times."
"That's not true and you know it." Jackson tells her.
Jackson and April are staring at each other, when suddenly-
"I just heard." Stephanie says as she rushes into his room.
She runs to his bedside.
"Are you okay?" She asks him through her sobs, touching his torso.
April simply stands there, looking at them.
"Yeah." He tells her.
She burries her face in his neck as he stares at April.
April stares back at him, uncomfortable with the exchange.
She walks away.
"You know, I asked him to marry me in private." April tells him.
"YOU PROPOSED TO THAT SOFTIE?!"
"Oh, so now you can get mad?"
"How did you, of all people, propose to him?"
As April walks out of the hospital doors, she sees Matthew at the ambulance door.
"Are you headed back out?"
He simply ignores her and moves to gather his equipment.
"Be careful, okay?"
"It was Avery, right?" Matthew responds as he's gathering his equipment. "He's the guy that you......I get it."
April looks ashamed.
"He's a good-looking guy. Practically runs the hospital." Matthew says as he's moving towards the vacant seat.
"-and I proposed to you in front of a hundred people. I didn't really give you the opportunity to say "no." He says looking at her.
She looks back at him with a sad expression.
He nods his head, stands up and walks away from her.
She watches him walk away from her.
"And what happened after that?"
April grimaces before she tells him the rest of the story.
Matthew is being dragged into the little 'church' that's within the hospital by April.
"April, I really don't have time for this." He tells her as she drags him to the podium.
"Please just-Just Please." She says as they face each other.
He looks....somewhat uncomfortable.
"I want to accept your proposal in private, without anybody pressuring me to say "yes." And I want to do it in front of God."
He looks bored.
"Actually-actually, no, you know what? No." She says waving her hands around. "I-I'm not accepting your proposal, I am proposing to you."
Matthew looks confused.
"I want to be your wife."
He looks flustered.
"I think you need to think some stuff out." Matthew tells him.
He starts to walk away.
With those two words, April manages to stops him.
She regains her composure.
"Okay. Yes, it was Jackson."
Matthew looks away from her.
"And yes, I-I have feelings for him. He's always gonna be a part of my life. And that gets confusing sometimes, especially when he's pulling babies out of burning buses." She says.
Matthew looks like he's been kicked.
He looks down.
"But I-" April grunts in frustration. "I-I'm not good at this. I-This is all new to me."
He looks up at her.
"Okay, I was never the girl that got picked at the dance. I-I-I'm not good at it, and I'm indecisive because I see eight sides of everything."
Matthew looks away for a moment while he's sproting a small smirk.
"And that's what you're picking when you pick me. And you may not want that. I thought maybe nobody would ever want that."
"But I-I want you." She says as she puts her hand over her heart.
He stares at her.
"I want to marry you."
He keeps his gaze on her.
"So will you marry me?"
He looks down.
He looks at the podium.
It seems as though he's going to walk away, until he picks her up bridal style.
She laughs as she's being spun around.
"I can't believe you proposed to him!"
"Well, you should've chosen me when I spilled my guts out to you."
"I still can't believe you proposed to him. And why didn't you propose to me?"
Chapter 17: Bridal Showers
April VS Her Sisters
"Do you want to here about that disastrous bridal shower that my sister's threw for me?"
"Boy, do I ever." Jackson says.
April opens up a box, and pulls out the content.
It's a salad spinner.
"Ugh, you are gonna love that thing. I use mine all the time."
April is still examining it like it's something foreign.
"Great!" April says.
"It's a salad spinner." Meredith tells her.
April looks at her with a confused expression.
"I don't know what it does." Meredith tells her.
"But the guy at the store recommended it and.....the receipt is on the back."
"Thank you, Mer." April tells her as she puts the box with the salad spinner into the gift box.
"Ooh! Another bow! Who's making the ribbon bouquet?" Libby asks.
"Ooh! Hey, yay!" Arizona says as she reaches towards Libby for the ribbon.
"So she can carry it at the rehearsal." Libby says excitedly as she gives the ribbon to Arizona. "Super fun."
The door opens.
"Ooh, we are late. Do you think she noticed that we're late?" Stephanie asks Leah.
"I don't even think she knows we're invited." Leah answered Stephanie before she turns to Webber. "What did we miss?"
"Um, garlic press, coffee maker, and a delicious tray of bruschetta." Webber says, with his answer muffled by the food in his mouth. "Oh, beautiful!"
The women in the room are cooing as April opens up another box.
"Did you even see what she got?" Leah asks Webber.
"It doesn't matter, as long as you say something nice. You gotta try the quiche." He answered as he motioned towards the quiche. He looks up. "Lovely!"
"Love it." Stephanie supplies.
"Fantastic!" Leah supplies as he hands a plate to Stephanie.
"Okay, um, you know what? This one is from your sisters." Arizona says as she hands a box to April.
"Oh, no, not that one." Libby says as her other sisters are in agreement with her. "We wanted to save that one, Duckie, to open in private."
"Oh, my god. You guys, you-you actually remembered?" April exhales, totally happy with their thoughts about her. "You remembered how much I wanna wear mom's veil?"
April rapidly unwraps the ribbon on the box and starts to open the box.
"No, we didn't..."
"Grab it, Alice!"
"I'm trying, stop!" Alice says, but it's too late.
April pulls the item in question out of the box.
It's a skimpy lace/beaded thong.
"Oh. This isn't mom's veil." April says as she simply looks at it.
"Adorable!" Leah and Stephanie shout in unison as they are about to shove food down their throat.
"Delightful!" Webber says as he's still eating.
Cristina starts laughing her head off as Meredith and Arizona simply smile.
"It's not. We are sorry. That was supposed to be for later." Libby reassures April, but it isn't working.
April is in shock.
"But since you've opened it..."
"Surprise!" Kimmie says.
"It's for your wedding night, for when you and Matthew..." Alice supplies as her other sisters hum in agreement.
"Oh, god." A dismayed April says as she puts the thong back in it's place.
"There's no reason to be embarrassed. We all had our first times, too, right, ladies?" Alice states as her sisters agree with her.
"We wanted to give you the lingerie and some tips. The pearls, by the way, are for the inside... "
"Stop. Just stop talking." April says as she cuts Libby off. "I..."
"But Matthew is your first real boyfriend. We're trying to help." Alice states, not giving an opportunity for April to stand up for herself.
"Please, don't." April says, but it's of no use.
"And he's a great catch." Libby says. "And you don't have the best track record with men."
"No, she doesn't have any track record." Kimmie says as Cristina is looking through the gift bags.
"When I found out you had a boyfriend, I was like "Don't make any sudden movements!" Kimmie says.
Libby and Alice are laughing along with Kimmie.
April is beyond mad at this point.
"Oh my God, stop talking to me like no man has ever found me sexy." She tells her sisters.
"Duckie?" Kimmie asks, but April isn't having it.
"And stop calling me Duckie!" April snaps.
Her sisters smiles and laughter are all gone.
Everyone in the room has gone silent, while Meredith is playing the the box, which contains an ice cream maker.
"I'm not Duckie anymore! My acne cleared up years ago. I got rid of my braces in college. I wear contacts. I use makeup. I did years of physical therapy to correct my pigeon toes and in case you haven't noticed, I learned how to condition my hair. I'm not your hopeless, ugly little sister anymore. I am not an ugly duckling. I'm a swan!"
"Hmm hmm." Cristina agrees as she nods her head.
"Yeah." Arizona agrees.
Meredith has now stop playing with the box and is looking up at April and her sisters.
"And a surgeon! A freaking kick ass surgeon who, by the way, has had sex before!"
As April drops that bombshell, Meredith, Christina and Arizona are stunned at April for admitting that in front of everyone in the room, while her sisters are just shocked as she's commuted a big no-no.
"What?" Libby asks.
"Oh, wow." Kimmie says, shocked.
"Does daddy know?" A visibly perturbed Alice asks.
Stephanie turns away with a smirk on her face.
April stands up.
"You know what? You're fired as my bridesmaids, all three of you. I don't want a single one of you standing up for me at my wedding."
Alice is shocked at April's words.
"Honey, don't be silly." Kimmie states as if April is joking with them. "You have to have bridesmaids."
"And I will." She tells Kimmie.
She turns an looks at Meredith, Cristina and Arizona.
"These are my people now." She says as she motions to them.
Meredith, Cristina, and Arizona are taken aback by the news as they don't react.
"Right?" April asks them, slightly desperate.
"Right!" Arizona says after a moment.
"Yes." Cristina says as if it's the most obvious thing in the world.
"Yeah." Meredith answers, as if she's still unsure about what happen.
April walks up towards her co-workers ans puts her hands on Arizona's shoulders.
"These are my bridesmaids!" April says, extremely happy.
"Yay!" Arizona cheers.
The look on April's sister's face means one thing to her and one thing only: the other Kepner sisters are not happy about this at all.
Jackson is laughing his head off.
"What so funny?"
"I just can't believe that you replaced your sisters. Were they really that bad?"
"Yes, they were Jackson."
"Why?" He teases.
"Because, Jackson. I said because." April tells him.
"But they gave you a lace/beaded thong. I mean, don't you think you would've looked good for me?"
"That's not the point." April says. "But since you're teasing me, I'm happy that I never wore that thing for you." She teases.
Chapter 18: I Do?
What Happens On April's Big Day?
"Ooh, how about your "wedding day" to Matthew?"
"Would you believe me when I say that day made me happy?"
Jackson only laughs.
"You tell me your side of the story about that day, and I'll tell you mine." He says.
The elevator bell dings as it opens. April steps out of the elevator and looks around and she sighs. She starts walking to her left and as she's walking, Jackson walks into her as he's not paying attention to where he's going.
"Wow, you look..."
"Nope! No. Don't say I look nice."
"Like a train wreck." He says. "But I can see where it's going."
She gives him a look that literally screams 'duh!'
"Um, what are you doing here?" He asks her.
"I'm hunting bridesmaids." April responds, somewhat desperate.
"Now is that a farm tradition?"
"Are you gonna be there?" She asks somewhat uncomfortable with the exchange.
They both look at each other, uncomfortable with each other's gazes as the telephone rings in distance.
"All right. I totally understand if you're not. " She says, as if she's admitting defeat. "I just..."
"Do you want me to be there?"
"Yes! Of course." She says, relieved.
"Then I'll be there." Jackson tells her as he moves to give her a side hug.
"Thank you." He says as he pats April on the shoulder.
"All right." SHe says.
His hands bump into her hair as he tries to move in for a full frontal hug.
"Oh, watch it." He says the same time she says-
"Oh, wait. You know what? The hair is..." She motions to her hair as she starts to walks away.
"Yeah." Jackson says as he walks away.
"You sure did look like you were torn up from the floor up." Jackson says with a smile on his face. "A hot mess, I might add."
"Haha, very funny. Haha, it is to laugh." April retorts in her best Daffy Duck impression. "Now let me get back to my life story that was meant for TV."
"Alright, alright." He conceeds.
April is currently scouring the hospital for her bridesmaids, that are still nowhere to be found. SHe turns a corner and she spots Cristina.
Several people are standing in front of Cristina with their camera shutter clickings.
"Ugh!" April exclaims as she barges into their current photoshoot.
Cristina turns and sees April in her current state.
"Yeah, there you are." April says. "Yeah, she is the magical healer of children. But you're done now, right? You're done? Can we go?" April says as she is pulling a surprised Cristina away from the crowd.
"Can we get one more?" One of the men asks.
"Please come with me." April says even though she's dragging Cristina along with her.
"Why are you here?" Cristina asks as she's being dragged away from the paparazzi by her co-worker.
"Are you bailing on the wedding?"
"What? No! I'm not bail... why would say that?" A flustered April asks Cristina. "No, I need you. Come with me."
Cristina still sports her 'unbothered' look.
" Meredith! " April exclaims as she barges into the lad where Meredith is studying for a case, with the 3D printer whirring next to her.
Meredith turns away from her work and looks at April, who's currently standing by the doors she barged in from.
" April, what are you doing? " A confused Meredith asks.
April doesn't respond and Meredith looks excited.
"Oh, god. Are you making a break for it?" A highly excited Meredith asks with a smile on her face. "Don't worry. I know what to do."
" Really? Why does everybody think I'm running? I'm not running. " A flustered April asks her as she walks up to Meredith. " Come with me. "
" But I -"
"No." April says as she drags Meredith out of the lab, and through the halls. "You bailed on every single one of your fittings for your bridesmaid's dress, so..."
April has dragged Meredith to another room. She opens the door and finds Cristina being fitted for her bridesmaid gown.
"I brought the seamstress to you." April finishes. "You will look pretty for my wedding."
"Hello." A woman says. "No clothes, please."
Suddenly, the telephone rings from somewhere as Meredith walked over to the seamstress.
"You guys are supposed to be doing this stuff for me." An annoyed April says as she leaves the room and slams the door shut.
April is currently walking down the hall, looking extremely frazzled. As she turns a corner, she bumps into Matthew.
" Aah! "
" Oh, my god! " She exclaims as the gurney Matthew is pushing, crashes into something.
" What are you doing here?! " They ask each other as they are standing on opposite sides of the wall/barrier.
The telephone rings in distance as they are catching their breaths.
" I'm working. " He says.
" On our wedding day? " She asks incredulously.
" I have to earn enough to take time off after our wedding day. " He says, defending himself.
April, who appreciates the gesture, sighs deeply .
" You saw me. " She says worriedly.
"Barely." Matthew assures her. "I-I didn't see your dress. I didn't see your hair. Do you have a really big hat on?"
"This is such bad luck!" She says as she stomps foot. "Such bad luck!"
"No, no, no, no, no. No." He says as he reaches out for April's hand while she huffs. "It's good."
April looks down and notices his hand. She takes his hand in hers.
"It's good, 'cause..." Matthew sighs. "If the first time I saw you today was in the dress with the hair, looking that beautiful, I would just be reminded of how much I don't deserve you, and I'd probably pass out. And we'd wind up back here. We wouldn't be married. They'd have to cut off my suit, and I'm still paying for it."
They both laugh at his statement about his suit.
"I'm glad I saw you like this, 'cause I'm gonna see you like this a lot more than I'll see you like that for the rest of our lives. And I love you like this. " He says genuinely.
April only smiles.
"I love you, too. I can't wait."April says as she inhales deeply, with a huge smile on her face. "Oh! Hey, don't forget black socks. Matthew?" The sirens are wailing from a distance as April is lost in her thoughts. She pulls away from her side of the wall and looks for her man. "Matthew?
April and Arizona are currently standing in front of a mirror, admiring their looks.
"You look so beautiful." Arizona says as her voice breaks.
"Aw!" April says, nodding her head as Arizona is sobbing. "That's really sweet. But, uh....." She grabs a tissue and hands it to Arizona. "You're gonna be all puffy if you keep that up."
Arizona laughs as she takes the tissue from April.
" Are you gonna get it together? " April asks her friend as Arizona walks away from her.
"Yeah." Arizona says as she cries and laugh. She turns to face April. "No, I'm fine. Callie's trying so hard to forgive me and to take care of me, and it's driving me crazy."
" I thought you wanted... " April starts, confused.
"I do! I do. I love her and I want her back. And I-I broke us. And I... and I wanna fix it." Arizona says, sniffling. "But she wants to fix me."
April nods her head and looks at Arizona sympathetically, and quite annoyed if she's honest with herself.
"The reason that I cheated that night-" Arizona says as she's looking up in the sky with a smile on her face. "-someone was attracted to me. And she never knew me before. She only knew me after. And I was enough for her. And Callie... you know, she knew me before and she loved me before. And now sometimes I-I feel like..."
Arizona starts crying again as April is trying to figure out the word that fits in this conversation.
" I'm not... I'm not... "
"Enough?" April supplies.
"Enough." Arizona repeats, tearfully.
"It's not fair. It's not fair." Arizona sobs as April gives her a rueful expression. "It's not her fault. It's not her fault that I hate feeling this way. And Callie's just... she's trying to... to fix everything. And I'm finally feeling okay the way that I am now! And I'm-I'm not sure that Callie will ever make me feel that way." Arizona finishes, sobbing heavilly as she is being hugged by April.
" I'm so sorry that you're going through all this. " April says as she hugs a sobbing Arizona. " Today. " April says, patting her friend on the back, looking up in the say, really annoyed.
Arizona wails as the doors open.
" I'm here. " Meredith says as she closes the door.
" Oh, thank god! " April says, relieved as she breaks from the hug.
"Yang forgot." April scoffs as Arizona and Meredith are putting the veil on April. "I knew one of you would forget."
"No." Arizona reassures her.
The door opens.
"Aah!" April exclaims. "Thank you!" She says as Cristina makes her way into the room. "I knew you'd make it. Okay, so when we get out there, Arizona's gonna take my bouquet. So if you and Meredith can be on either side of my train, I... "
"How dare you say I haven't changed?" Cristina aks Meredith.
April and Arizona stop their movements.
"I don't have to justify my choices to you, not one." Meredith responds.
Both Arizona and April look between the two best friends.
"How dare you say I am the same person I was when I got here, before I knew Burke and Owen and you? Your life looks different because it's filled with houses and husbands and kids. And my mine looks the same, but I'm not. I've changed. I'm doing this alone. And that's... that's just as hard as what you're doing. But I thought I would at least have you." Cristina tells her.
Meredith, who's been on the recieving end of Cristina's rant, stares at her intently.
"I'm so jealous of you, I wanna set things on fire." Meredith admits, frustrated with her current predicament with her person. "You did what I tried to do, and I couldn't. And you don't even know how you did it. You have nothing but time and focus. You're not who we were when we got here. You are who we both set out to be."
"And you've become something... we never saw coming." Cristina says as Meredith hangs her head. "You are as good a mother as you are a surgeon. And I'm happy for you. But we are growing apart."
"I know." Meredith says after she lifted her head. "And I don't wanna compete with you, but I do, because we're supposed to push each other and make each other better forever. Since the day we met, right?"
"Okay. So then..."
"God, I know. I'm so glad because-"
"Oh! Shut up!" April bellowed.
Cristina and Meredith simply look at her, shocked.
"Today is not the day. You two... " She says motioning to the twisted sisters. "-super neat that you're working your crap out, but not today."
Cristina and Meredith simply stare at each other, forgetting that they were supposed to be doing something.
"And you!" April snaps, turning to face Arizona. "You know what? Stop talking about adultery on my wedding day, because it is my wedding day! I should be feeling very special right now."
Cristina and Meredith are nodding their head in agreement while April is carrying on and on with her rant.
"I should be flounced and fluffed up and checked over and handed tissues and told not to cry with joy. So just... you know what? Stop thinking about you, and you make me feel special." April says before she sighs deeply.
"Get-" Meredith says as she motions to something on the coffee table.
"Would you like a tissue?" Cristina says as she hands April a tissue.
"Uh-huh." April says as she takes the tissue.
"I'm gonna..." Meredith says.
"You looked good." Cristina says.
"You know what? The veil turned out to be so pretty." Arizona supplies.
"Okay, we ready?" Meredith asks as they are all dressed up and ready to go.
"Yeah." Arizona says.
There's a knock at the door, and Meredith opens the door.
"Oh! You made it!" She exclaims.
"I made it." He tells his wife with a smile on his face.
"Oh, great! Come here." She says, pulling him in the room.
"Chief!" April greets Owen with a smile on her face. "You came!"
"Of course." He says. "The whole hospital's practically here."
"Really?" She asks.
"Yeah." He tells her. "You're very well liked."
"Okay, well, now you have to go, 'cause I'm gonna start crying." April says as her voice starts to crack. "Because if it weren't for you, none of this would be happening to me."
"You deserve it, all of it. And you look beautiful." He tells her with a smile on his face before he pecks April's cheek.
April can only smile.
"Congratulations." He tells he before he leaves the room.
April appears at the end of the aisle with her father. She smiles widely as she spots Matthew at the alter.
He smiles back at her.
As April is walking down the aisle with her father, she can't help but smile like an idiot as the crowd murmurs in whispers.
When they reach to the alter, Joe hands his daughter off to Matthew and she hands her boquet to Arizona.
"There is no greater example of God's power than the love we share between us." The reverend says. "April and Matthew are here today to commit that love to each other before god and before all of you. So let's pray."
As everyone in the church bows their head, Derek's cell phone rings .
Everyone looks at him.
He pulls the phone out of his pocket and it beeps. Derek stands up from his seat, moving to the back of the farm.
" Heavenly father , Watch over April and Matthew as they take the first steps on a journey that will last them the rest of their lives on earth . Give them the strength to commit their love to one another. Unshakable through any storm, unbreakable in the face of any stress. A promise we simply refuse to break. And you, April and Matthew's closest friends and family, are here today to bear witness to their union." The reverend says.
April, Matthew, the bridesmaids and the groomsmen all turn to all of April and Matthew's friends and loved ones.
"Will you promise to love and support their married in all the days to come? If so, please respond "we will." The reverend says.
"Man, that was hard for me." Jackson tells her.
"Because that whole time, I was wondering whether or not if we had something left to fix between the two of us."
"Well, I guess you've been listening to Bob Marley's Get Up, Stand Up, and remembering Sloan's words."
"My turn to tell my side story." Jackson says.
"We will." The place says as I stay silent.
Stephanie looks at me.
"I'm sorry." I tell her apologetically as she's sporting a confused look."
I stand up.
All eyes are on me.
I sit back down.
I can see the the bridesmaids all look at each other, confused.
Stephanie is confused too, but I don't give a damn right now.
The reverend, Yoda, Yahew, whatever he is, chuckles as April and Matthew exchange a baffling look with one another.
"April and Matthew, I have known the two of you for quite some time, and I'm happy to be here today..."
This time I stand back up and stand still.
"I love you, April."
April turns and looks at me.
"I always have. I-I love everything about you." I tell her.
This time, Matthew turns around.
"Even the things I don't like, I love."
Her mouth is wide open, expression: shocked.
"And I want you with me."
Bailey is so shocked that she literally turned her head.
Meredith's mouth is hanging, wide open.
Cristina and Arizona are looking at me like I'm crazy.
April looks at her bridesmaids, completely taken off gaurd with my admission.
"I love you, and I think... that you love me, too. Do you?" I ask her.
Stephanie looks heartbroken, but to hell with her.
I can feel Alex rolling his eyes, while his girlfriend just sits there like she's been confounded by Hermione Granger.
Matthew turns his head towards April who still hasn't said anything.
I'm still waiting on April's answer.
Her sisters look at me, and they are all equally as shocked as April as they turn too look at her.
Suddenly, April gasps.
"Even in a dream, from your perspective, you still manage to make me cry." April says.
"Hahaha! I should've bet that you'd cry." Jackson says.
Chapter 19: The Aftermath
What Happened After Jackson's Confession In That Barn?
“I still can’t believe what we did!” April says as she is sporting a huge smile on her face.
“Did what? Ran out of the barn? Elope? What?”
“You’re nuts, but I love the hell out of you.” Jackson says.
Jackson and April are running out of the barn, hand and hand, smiling at each other.
“Oh my God!” April happily exclaims as she gets in the passengers side of Jackson’s vehicle. “Oh my God!”
Suddenly, she is shocked.
“Oh my God!” She says, completely taken aback by their actions.
Jackson looks at her as she keeps repeating “Oh my God!” as if it were a prayer.
She starts breathing heavily.
“April, do you- do you not want to do this?” Jackson asks her.
She turns to face him, and she grabs his face, kissing him senseless.
“Drive the car.” April says as she breaks the kiss.
"Freaking out on your big day? The shame!" Jackson teases.
"Well it was unexpected."
"Jackson, pull over." April says as they are traveling down a dark road. "Jackson, just pull over the car."
"Just... what is it?" Jackson asks.
"Jackson, please, just pull over the car now!"
"Relax." Jackson sighs as he pulls over his car. "Just calm down."
"Calm down?!" A shaken April asks. "What are we doing? Is-is there a plan? Is..."
"There's no plan. You think I would plan to ruin your wedding?" A confused Jackson asks April.
"No-no! That doesn't seem like you." April says as she breathes shakily.
"All right, April, look..."
"I can't. I'm sorry." April rushes out as she opens her door. "We can't do this. I can't."
She leaves the car.
Jackson is confused.
"Man, I have to admit that you cooked a mean spaghetti."
"Mean?" Jackson scoffs.
"Yeah. Your spaghetti was a lot better than mine."
"Yes, I know." Jackson brags.
"You don't have to be smart about it."
"Yes I can. I'm already dead, so you can't do anything to harm me." He points out.
"But we are in my dream, so-"
April punches his arm.
"Shame on you." Jackson says, feigning the pain as he smiles cheekily at her.
“So, how are you going to tell this part of the story?”
“I think I’ll start with after the escape and before I told you about the board meeting.”
“Fire away, Jackman.”
"April, get back in the car!" Jackson yelled out after she is walking away from him. "You can't just walk back!"
She stops and turns to look back at him.
"Matthew doesn't deserve this! And-and Stephanie? What are we supposed to say to them? My-my parents? Your mother?"
"Oh, my god. My mother." He says as he turns to face the car, with one hand on his hip and the other on his forehead.
"How do we explain that we just destroyed two perfectly lovely people so that we could... what, date?!"
"Okay, the best solution is never to speak to any of them ever again." He tells her as he is moving one of his hands around.
"Or...?" She says, confused, waiting for an answer.
"Or we get married. I..."
"Because that's easier to explain." She says as she throws her arms up in the air.
"No. No, 'cause you're right, all right?" He says as he is walking up to April. "Because I don't want to just date. April, I want the whole damn thing. I..."
"We can get to lake Tahoe in 13 hours." He supplies.
"How do you know that?" She asks.
"Do you want to get into that right now?"
"No, you don't want to get into that or, no, you don't want to get married?"
She stares at him.
"Yes." She says running to him. "Yes!"
They kiss as he lifts her and spins her around.
After a moment, they both break the kiss and get back into the car.
“So how did it feel, choosing me over Matthew?”
“Ask me that question again in a few minutes, babe.”
“Okay, but why?”
“Because we eloped, remember?”
“You’re the one who couldn’t remember stuff, not me.”
“Jackson, be quiet and listen.”
Jackson is still driving down the empty highway as he and April are eating fries.
"No, no, wait. You can't steal all my fries." He says, stuffing his mouth with a fry as he looks at her.
"Sure, I can. What's mine is yours. What's yours is mine." She says eating a fry herself.
"We're not married yet."
He is so busy laughing that he accidentally pushes the fries off the console, which stains her wedding dress with ketchup.
"Aw, crap. Sorry. Crap, crap, crap."
"Oh, no! Aah! You know what? No more fries for you."
"It was an accident." He says as he eats another fry.
"No, no. No more." She says as he is eating yet another fry. She laughs.
He eats another fry as she wipes her hands on a napkin.
"Hey. Where are we gonna live? After?"
"Well, I was thinking... What about my place?"
"Absolutely." She says without conviction.
"Really?" He asks as he turns to look at her.
"Yeah. It's way nicer. It's bigger. It's perfect."
"But I'm not changing my name."
"What? Avery's a great name."
"So is Kepner. You want to take it?"
"No. He laughs.
She starts laughing as well.
"No, I'm not changing my name." He says through his laughter.
"Okay." She laughs.
"I didn't expect you to, either." He says. "That's not really a thing for me."
"No, definitely not."
"What?" He asks, laughing.
"Holy crap. We did this! We are doing this." She says happily.
"We're doing this." He says.
They lean in at the same time for a kiss.
April pulls away from Jackson, smiling at him.
He smiles at her, caressing her cheek with his finger.
Jackson and April are currently in a shop somewhere far from their town.
“What time?” Jackson asks from somewhere near April.
"What about this one?" A woman asks April as she is holding up a yellow dress..
"I really have my heart set on getting married in white." April says.
"The wedding dress you're wearing is gorgeous. I know a cleaner who can get that stain out." The saleswoman says motioning to the ketchup stain on April's current wedding dress.
"Yeah, thank you, but I need a new dress." April tells her.
"I'll see what I have in the back."
"Thank you." April responds to her as she turns and starts to browse through the rack in front of her.
"Thank you. Yes, thank you. Bye. All right. We've got ourselves a justice of the peace." Jackson says as he is walking towards his woman. "Tomorrow afternoon, he will marry us."
"Uh, a justice of the peace?"
"Mm-hmm." He says as he moves around her, stands to her left and starts browsing though the rack as well.
Okay, so, um... Our wedding will be..."
"Legal. Yeah." Jackson confirms. "He's got a license. He's not an Elvis or a pirate or a cartoon character."
"I-I... I had just really hoped that we'd find a minister. Someone nondenominational, obviously," She says as she waves her hands around. "-but, you know, just someone who's at least been ordained."
"April, I'm not religious."
"No, I know, I know. Just having someone with some sort of relationship with God marry us is kind of important to me."
"I mean, even finding this guy wasn't easy on such short notice." He says as she is nodding her head, understanding his point of view. "I mean, having a wedding without a lot of God talk is kind of important to me."
"I always had such, like, a clear idea of what my wedding would look like."
"Want me to bring you back to the barn, or were you..." He says with a smile.
"No! Stop it, Jackson. No." She says, laughing softly. She inhales deeply as she wraps her arms around his waist, standing in front of him. "I just want God at my wedding. I want him there for the most important day of my life."
"Well, you know that after we get married, I'm not gonna turn into this churchgoing guy. You know, I watch football on Sundays." He tells her.
"You are not changing who you are, and I do not want you to. But you can't expect me to change who I am, either."
Suddenly, footsteps approaching them.
"How's this one?" The saleswoman asks April.
April leans over Jackson's arm and looks at the dress.
It's a gray dress.
"Oh. Right idea, wrong color." April tells her.
The woman walks away, annoyed.
"I'll make some phone calls, and we'll find an ordained minister."
"Thank you." April says.
"Mm-hmm." He hums as she kisses his lips.
She pulls away.
"Did you see what we just did there?" She asks him. "We disagreed. We discussed. We compromised."
"We are pretty amazing at this marriage thing." Jackson says with a small smirk on his face.
"We are." April laughs.
"This one?" The saleswoman asks April.
"Oh, my gosh! Oh, my gosh!"
It's a white dress with a green intricate design around the middle.
"Oh!" Jackson exclaims as he tries to turn around and look at the dress.
"No, no, no, no, no! Don't look! It's bad luck!" She says as she stops him from turning his head around.
"Yes, yes, yes!" April squeals as the saleswoman is looking at April as if she is crazy.
As the woman walks away from the couple, April kisses Jackson.
"I know you think it's silly." April says as they are walking through the hotel parking lot, with her arms wrapped around his right arm.
"'Well, I didn't say that."
"But I'm serious, okay? No premarital sex." She says and they stop walking.
Jackson sighs and he turns to face April.
"How serious? Like "absolutely not" serious or "I could be convinced" serious?" He asks as he moves in to kiss April's neck.
"We will survive one more night." She says as she's fighting and willing herself not to moan.
Jackson lifts his head up and sighs.
"Speak for yourself."
"If we wait..."
"...our wedding night will be so amazing."
"And tonight could also be..." He pauses. "-so amazing." He says, trying to imitate April's voice.
April laughs just before they kiss each other.
"Okay." April says in between their kiss.
"Mm-hmm?" Jackson agrees.
They break their steamy kiss.
"You..." She says as she pulls away from him.
"Good night, Jackson."
He sighs as he gives April her hotel key.
She kisses him, giggles after she takes the key before she climbs the three or so stairs to her room.
Both of them sigh as she is unlocking her room. Once the door is open, she turns to look at him before she steps inside the room. As she is in the room, she turns to look at him with a goofy look on her face.
"I'm gonna go now." She tells him as if she were a love struck teenage girl.
He waves at her just before she closes the door.
She chuckles just as the door closes.
He chuckles as he's staring at the door as the lock to April's door engages.
Jackson looks around, smiling.
After a moment of just standing around, he climbs the three or so stairs. As he is making his way to his own room, he turns back and knocks on April's door.
The lock disengages and the door opens.
"Good night, Jackson." April says as she is smiling.
"You put the chain on?" He asked her in disbelief, rocking a smile.
"I'll see you in the morning." She tells him.
He sighs as she closes the door with his hand on the door.
"All right." Jackson says as the locks to the door re-engages. As he starts to walk away, the lock disengages and the chain rattles. He rushes back.
"Forget something?" He asks cheekily.
She looks at him before she pulls him into her room. They passionately kiss for a moment with the door open.
He shuts the door with his foot.
The next day, April and Jackson are standing in front of an ordained minister, enjoying their outdoor ceremony.
April is chuckling.
"Oh, I can't believe we're doing this." Jackson tells her.
"I can." April tells her man.
"You may now kiss." The minister tells them.
Jackson immediately leans down and kisses his new wife.
As they kiss, Jackson picks her up and he spins around while the minister is smiling and the birds are chirping in the background.
“Damn, we have such an incredible story.” April says.
“We sure do. It was very awesome.”
"Hope you're okay with spaghetti. I had to ditch that leftover chicken." Jackson says as he's putting Parmesan cheese on the pasta.
April hugs him from behind.
He leans back into her hug.
"I found a home for the ice-cream maker."
"Oh, I thought we were keeping it. Hope we didn't go through all that for nothing." He whines.
"Hey!" She says as she playfully smacks him before she moves around to face him.
"We had a board meeting tonight. I don't think we're gonna be able to keep this a secret much longer."
"A meeting about us?"
"What happened?" She asks.
"I'll tell you about it after dinner." He says as he kisses her again.
“So how did it feel, choosing me over Matthew?” Jackson asks his wife for the second time.
“Right." April says as she shrugs, smiling like an idiot. "It feels right.”
Chapter 20: "Hypothetical" Samuel
April's Turbulent Pregnancy
“Remember our first fight?”
“Which one?” Jackson asks.
“The one about how we would raise our children, when I told you that I was pregnant. Does that ring a bell?” April asks.
“Yes, I remember.” He says. “All I had to entertain myself at night was a bottle of lube and my hand.”
“You are so disgusting!” April exclaims through her laughter.
“I might be disgusting, but I’m an honest one.”
“And hard-headed. I mean, you don’t even like leftovers.”
“That’s a depressing concept!” He defends. “Throw-pillows are an even stupider concept.”
“Stupider isn’t even a word!” April laughs.
“So?” He asks, not caring that she’s being picky with her vocabulary.
“That is just so, so wrong, Jackson.” She giggles.
“Yeah, yeah. So let’s talk about our fight.”
April is back at the apartment after spending a couple days at Callie and Arizona's house. The door opens and a pair of keys jingle.
"Hey." Jackson greets his new wife.
"Hey." She repeats.
"So, you are..." He starts of slowly as they stare at each other. She shows him the item in her hand. "Right." He says as he walks over to the other side of the room.
April simply stares at him.
"Uh, I'll see you tomorrow." She says as she makes her way to the door.
"April." He says turning around to look at her.
She stops and she turns to look at him.
"I said a lot of things the other night that I regret. And I'm sorry that I hurt your feelings."
"I'm sorry, too." April admits as she hangs her head.
"Good. So come home. Stay. This is a conversation we're always gonna have to have. It's a part of who we are. It's gonna take some talking. But we got married. We love each other. We made vows to push through this sort of thing." He tells her as she looks at him apologetically.
"I know. I love you, too, and we made a commitment." She says as she places her iPod on the couch and slowly makes her way towards him.
"And if you believe in god, then you believe he made me... your husband... who shares your values, which I do." He says walking towards her with slight open arms. "I believe we shouldn't kill or steal. I believe that you should be truthful. I believe that you should treat others the way you want to be treated."
"I agree." She says as she takes a breathe.
"So, then, we can push through this problem. At our core, we believe the same things." Jackson finishes.
"Until I think about telling our children how unbelievably loved they are by the creator of the universe, who also made them, and I can just see you standing there, judging and dismissive, and I just can't get past it." April says, trying to make her point cleear to him.
"Can we please just take a break from our hypothetical children?" Jackson says irritably.
"No we can't! Because they're not hypothetical anymore." She says with her voice shaking.
He looks at her with a blank expression.
"Jackson, I'm pregnant." April tells him as she is looking up at him.
By the expression on his face at the news, he understands.
"I have to say that ‘that’ was some news that I wasn't ready for."
"Me either. I mean, everything was still so…new to us at that time.”
“It really was.” Jackson says.
"See right there?" The OB/GYN says as she indicated to the screen. "That little blueberry's what you've been waiting for... Or not." She finishes as she notices the somewhat worried look on the newly weds' faces. "This wasn't the idea?"
"Uh, well, sure." Jackson says as he turns to look at his wife.
"Are you looking to terminate?" She asks the couple.
"God, no, no." April says as she sits up.
"No, no." Jackson responds, the same time April looks up at him.
"Okay, then. Well, get dressed and meet me in my office." The doctor says as she gets out of her seat and hands April the sonogram.
Jackson sighs as the doctor leaves the examination room.
"You don't want to terminate, do you?" April asks her husband.
"No." He reassures her. "I want us to be happy about this."
"I-I am happy." April says, trying to convince herself.
“That was so surreal.” April says.
“Because our lives really changed and we couldn’t process it right away.”
“True.” April says.
"I just think it's kind of shocking that the first option tossed onto the table for a pregnant woman with mixed feelings is termination."
"I think she's just doing her job."
"Can you just be on my side?"
"I am on your side. I just don't think we need to vilify the O.B. for one comment."
"I wasn't." April says. "I-I was... Maybe I was. I don't know. I don't want to fight."
"What about Phoebe if it's a girl?"
"Phoebe Freebie? Slutty." Jackson says.
April stares at him.
"Uh, but, uh, cute. Terrific. It's one of the better names.” He tells her as he spots his stepfather coming into the cafeteria. He stands up and walks over to him. “Dr. Webber, did I hear that you called a meeting of the board?”
“Yeah, I did. Well, next time, could you please make sure I'm available?”
“Well, we needed to discuss some issues with the foundation. Your input wasn't needed.”
“Excuse me, sir. If you have something to say about the foundation, you say it to me. I would appreciate that.”
“Okay, well, here's what I'll say, then. I built this place with certain ideals in mind, and I'm not gonna let them be trifled with. We got in bed with your foundation too fast. It's clear that there are certain fundamental differences of philosophy. It's not gonna work. It's a doomed marriage.” Webber tells him as he walks away from Jackson.
April, with her head turned towards where the two men were just conversing, is staring at Jackson.
"Hi." Jackson says as he walks up to the pew where April is sitting at the mini church that is in the hospital.
She looks up at him.
"How did you know I was...?"
"I know who you hang out with." He tells her.
She scoots down to make room for Jackson to sit next to her.
"Yeah." Jackson says. "Yeah. I just needed to sit down for a bit."
"Should probably get used to these seats, though." He says facing her.
April immediately turns her head.
"I can't change who I am. But that doesn't mean I want to sit at home every Sunday when my family's off at church."
"You would go to church with me?" She asks, with a watery smile.
"You're my wife. Of course I will." The chuckle as he caresses her cheek. "As long as we can get waffles after."
April laughs as he puts his arm around her shoulders, bringing holding her close.
"We can have waffles after."
“Had I known what I was going to meet you in that little church in the hospital, I would’ve prayed.”
“So what were you doing there?”
“Just looking for you.”
“And you knew that I would be in the little church?”
“I called it a hunch, my little woman.” He says planting a kiss on her cheek.
Even in a dream, he still makes her giddy.
"Ooh, look at this cute, little fetus." April says with Jackson's arm is around her as they leave the OB/GYN room. "I want to send this to my mom."
"Of course, right after the first trimester... two more weeks."
"Come on, that's so far." April whines.
They stop walking.
"Look, if we start telling people, we got to tell my mom." Jackson says. "She already tried to torpedo our relationship once over a hypothetical child. What do you think she's gonna do with a real one?"
"Oh. Hey, guys." Callie greets.
"Hey." Jackson greets.
"Hi! Hey!" April says. "Just, uh, having a checkup with old ob-gyn, making sure all the parts are... in order." She says as she motions at both her's and Jackson's stomach.
"Yeah." Jackson says.
"Both of you?" Callie wonders.
"Callie Torres?" A nurse called out as she popped out from an examination room.
"Hi. Yes. That's me." Callie says turning to look at the nurse. "Uh, I think I can handle this on my own." She tells the newly weds as she faces them.
"Okay." April chuckles.
Callie walks away from them.
"That was terrible!" April laughs as she faces her husband.
"And what's up with this?" Jackson asks, sporting a smile as he mimicks April's motions towards their stomachs.
"I don't know!" April laughs as they walk away.
“You are so weird.” Jackson laughs.
“Hey, you married me, dream lover.”
“Hey, are you about to quote Mariah Carey right now?”
“You did ‘take me away’, Avery. Don’t deny it.”
“Don’t do it.” Jackson begs, even though secretly he wants her to sing the song to him.
♪I need a lover to give me
The kind of love
That would last always
I need somebody uplifting
To take me away
I want a lover who knows me
Who understands how I feel inside
Someone to comfort and hold me
Through the long lonely nights
Till the dawn
Why don't you take me away
Dream lover come rescue me
Take me up take me down
Take me anywhere you want to baby now
I need you so desperately
Won't you please come around
'Cause I wanna share forever with you baby
I don't want another pretender
To disillusion me one more time
Whispering words of forever
Playing with my mind
I need someone to hold on to
The kind of love that won't fly away
I just want someone to belong to
Of my life
So come and take me away
Dream lover come rescue me
Take me up take me down
Take me anywhere you want to baby now
I need you so desperately
Won't you please come around
'Cause I wanna share forever with you baby
Baby come and take me away
Dream lover come rescue me
Take me up take me down
Take me anywhere you want to baby now
I need you so desperately
Won't you please come around
'Cause I wanna share forever with you baby
Dream lover come rescue me
Take me up take me down
Take me anywhere you want to baby now
I need you so desperately
Won't you please come around
'Cause I wanna share forever with you baby♪
“That song never gets old.” April says.
“Yes it does.” Jackson says.
“Stop lying to yourself, Jackson.”
“And what makes you think I’m lying?”
“Because you’re breathing.”
“What?” He laughs.
“You’re lying, twiching and blinking.” April says.
“Alright, alright, you got me.” Jackson says. “I love it!”
“I know you do.” April says smugly.
“Let’s get on with the story.” Jackson suggested.
It is the end of another work day as Jackson and April are walking down the hallway, making their way to the entrance of the hospital doors.
"You know, I've thought about it, and if you want to send the ultrasound to your mom, that wouldn't be the worst thing." Jackson says.
"You've told!" April says, hitting his arm while trying to keep the surprised look under control.
"I d... I-I kind of..." He says, scratching his head.
"Who did you tell?"
"Stephanie?" He responds as he makes a funny face.
"Oh, wow." She says throwing her head back. "So, after all the crap you gave me this morning, you went and told your ex-girlfriend?"
"It was an accident, okay?"
"Okay." She says smiling.
"I'm sorry." He says putting his arm around her shoulders.
“Uh-huh." She says as they are walking.
She looks up at him before she looks forward. " I forgive you."
"Thanks." He says looking at her.
"Mmhmm." She smiled.
"Still don't know how we're gonna tell my mom."
April chuckled as they reached the door to leave.
"What do you mean, "we"? That is all you, talkie Tina." She says as the pushed the door walking through the threshold.
Jackson simply stands at the door, smiling before he pushes the other door to walk out of the hospital.
"Guess what." Jackson says as he is walking down a hall towards his wife. "I delivered a baby today. And the good news is: if the O.B. doesn't show up for ours, then I get..."
April runs up to her husband and hugs him.
"Hey." He says as she sniffles.
"Our baby will be fine." April says as they are wrapped up in each other. "He'll be fine... or she will be 'cause she'll have us." She says as she pulls away, just enough to still have him in her arms and look at him.
"Hey, of course she will." Jackson concurs. "You know, my mom always says that's how the world changes."
"Good people raising their babies right." She finishes with a smile on her face.
"Wait, is that... is that a thing? I thought that was just my mom."
April shuts him up with a kiss.
After a moment of passionate kissing, April breaks the kiss.
"I love you." She says before they resume kissing.
“Good people raising their babies right.” Jackson repeats. “Wait a minute! You talked to my mom, didn’t you?”
“Duh!” She playfully responds. “Were else would I get a phrase like that from? Oprah?”
“Honestly, yes.” Jackson says. “You did love watching Oprah.”
“Yes, I loved Oprah, but let’s be honest. I don’t think that she’d ever say that since she never had kids.”
“She had Gayle’s daughter.” He reminded her. “And Steadman’s daughter too.”
“Fair point.” April says.
Jackson and April are in the attendings' lounge simply staring lovingly at each other.
Jackson clears his throat, still smiling.
"Oh, hey." Jackson says as he reaches the table, where the coffee pot is stationed at.
"Good morning." Richard says.
"Morning, sir. Yeah."
"Mm-hmm." Webber says as he walks away.
Jackson watches as Richard leaves the lounge before he pours a cup of coffee in his cup.
He sighs happily as he walks over to his wife, who;s currently standing by an open cupbord like closet.
"We're having a baby." He sings as he grabs his wife's hand.
"We're having a baby." They sings as he twirls her around, dancing happily. "We're having a baby."
Arizona walks in on the couple.
"Ooh. Hey. What you doing?"
"Oh." April says as they look at Arizona.
Jackson starts humming.
"We're dancing." April supplies as she and her husband look at each other, dancing.
"Dance." Jackson says.
Arizona ponders this for a moment.
"Right on." She says as she starts to move. "Right on."
April is humming happily as they are all dancing.
Suddenly, Meredith walks in the lounge.
"Oh. Hi." Arizona says.
"Hi." Meredith says as she starts dancing too. "Well, who died?"
"What?!" April laughs.
"Nobody." Jackson says.
"I only dance it out when something bad happens." Meredith says as she's dancing.
"Oh." Arizona says.
"Not today." Jackson says.
"Did someone-" Meredith starts, but she get's cut off by Webber, who walks in on the celebration.
"Did I leave my-" He starts, but he notices that his co-workers are dancing.
He stares at them for a moment.
"Well, all right!" He says as he joins in.
"No." April says as she laughs.
Alex walks in the lounge.
"What the hell?" He asks.
April laughs as Callie walks into the lounge.
"Oh." Callie says. She simply stares at the people who are dancing before she claps her hands.
"Hey." She says with a sing-songy voice.
Laughter could be heard from the mother to be.
"Oh, all right. All right." Callie says in a normal voice, still dancing. "We celebrating the new baby?"
Everyone but Callie stops dancing, while Alex looks at the couple with a 'What was that? Come again?' expression on his face.
"What?" Webber asks.
"Wait. What?" Arizona says.
"What did she say? Torres?" Webber asks a twirling Callie. "What- what did you say?"
Callie stops dancing.
"Uh, well..." Jackson starts.
"I'm so sorry." Callie whispers to the couple.
"We are actually celebrating a baby. I am pregnant." April tells them with a smile on her face..
"Oh, my God!" Arizona exclaims.
"Holy crap." Alex says, smiling a little.
"Yeah, yeah." April says as Arizona hugs her.
Laughter and cheers are filling the lounge.
"Congratulations." Webber says as he pulls his
stepson in for a hug.
"Thank you!" Jackson says.
"Hey, hey." April exclaims as she pulls Meredith in as they begin to dance again
"Thank you! Thank you!" April says as laughter is still ringing within the loungs.
"Work it out." Someone says as Alex simply stands there, watching everyone else dancing.
“I bet you that Cristina would’ve been dancing with Meredith if she had stayed at the hospital.” Jackson says.
“I also think that Alex would’ve danced too instead off looking like an odd ball.” April says.
“We’ll never know.” Jackson says.
“What a boring tool. He was always such a grumpus. I mean, he only showed off his skills to every slut that he slept with between Izzie and Jo.”
Jackson laughs, but he agrees with that statement.
It has been another busy day at the hospital and April is running the place. She has just given an intern a order when-
"April." Jackson called out as he walks into the trauma area.
"Hey, uh, I thought you were on the..." She starts, but Jackson cuts her off.
"Yeah, your mom's flight got in early, so I brought her here."
"Why would you do that?"
"'Cause she wanted to see you."
"I-I set her up in the attendings' lounge." He tells her. "Just give me a page when you get a second."
He walks away.
"Love you!" He calls out as he's walking away from his wife.
April sighs as she turns back around.
"Sorry, uh, what was I saying?"
“That was evil, Jackson Avery.”
“No it wasn’t. You were the one who was evil.”
“Fine, we were both evil.”
“I agree with that.” Jackson says nonchalantly.
"Hi, mom!" April greets her mother as she walks into the attendings' lounge.
"Ah!" Her mother laughs as she runs up to her daughter. "Oh, look at... Oh, look at you!" She says as she's motioning to her daughter's stomach. "Oh!"
"How was your flight?" April asks as Jackson puts his hands on his wife's shoulder.
"Oh, not as good as my ride over. My chauffeur has the prettiest eyes." Karen says making eyes towards her son-in-law.
"Mom!" Aprils says, scandalized.
"Oh, uh, thank you?" Jackson responds.
Karen gasps. "Oh, look, I almost forgot." She says as she turns towards her luggage.
Jackson and April look at each other.
"Look what I found in the airport gift shop..." Karen says as she holds the item up for the couple to see. "Zoo animal decals from the Seattle zoo!"
The couple are...speechless as Karen holds up the decals.
"I thought they'd be adorable on the nursery wall, and they'll go with whatever color you're planning on painting, which I assume is gender neutral."
"Oh, you know, actually, we haven't... We haven't really had time to think about colors." Jackson says as he looks at his wife.
"Mnh-mnh." April agrees.
"Oh, you two and work... Busy, busy, busy!"
She turns away from them as the couple turn to look at each other.
"Speaking of which, um, the E.R. is a madhouse." April says as she turns to look at her mother.
"Oh, yeah." Jackson agreed.
"I-I probably... I just need to get back down there, but I promise I will try to make it back for dinner."
"Oh, dinner?" Karen asks, dismayed.
"Mom... what?" A confused April asks.
"I thought maybe you could take off the afternoon. We could shop for paint samples for the nursery and open a baby registry. Mrs. Frye at church asks over..." Karen starts, but April isn't really having it and Jackson moves behind his wife.
"Mom, you know what I do for a living. I don't know why you thought I could just take all afternoon off to..."
"You know what? I have a super-light day, so I can... “Jackson says as he steps away from his wife and walks towards his mother-in-law. “I can do all of... All of those things."
"Jackson, you d... You don't have to do that."
"It's not a problem." He reassures her.
"It'll be fun!" Karen says.
"Yes, it will. We've got this." Jackson says with a smile.
April can only look down.
Karen and Jackson are currently in the nursery, fixing up the room.
"Hello, Jackson?" April calls out.
"In here, Dr. Mom!" Karen laughs.
April exclaims as she walks into the room.
"Hey." Jackson says.
April sighs as she walks into the room.
"Wow! You've been... busy."
"We were just gonna start a gift registry, but then we saw this adorable mobile, and the next thing I knew, I filled a shopping cart." Karen tells her daughter as she is holding a pack of baby bottles in one hand and another baby item in the other.
April chuckles. It's a forced chuckle, but a chuckle nonetheless.
"Yeah, we actually had a pretty good day today." Jackson says as he looks from Karen to his wife.
"Don't sound so surprised! I am quite fun." Karen says as April turns to her left and looks at the crib.
"Uh, this didn't come from a store." April states, looking at the crib.
"Four generations of Kepner babies have slept in that old war-horse." Karen says, smiling as she is holding the baby bottles.
"How did you... You didn't bring this in your carry-on." April says as she is eyeing the crib warily.
"Shipping cost a fortune." Karen says.
April looks annoyed.
"Your sisters thought I should send it along, but I wanted to be here to see your face when it arrived, so last week, I called Jackson." Karen says.
"You called Jackson?!" April exclaimed as she turned to look at her mother.
"I do know how to use a telephone, little miss." Her mother says with a smile on her face.
Jackson looks from his mother-in-law to his wife, sporting a small smile.
"I am famished." Karen says.
"Well, why did you wait for me to eat?" April asks. "I called. I told you I'd be late."
"We probably just lost track of time." Jackson says as he looks at his wife.
"It's no a big deal. I'll just hop in the kitchen and whip something up." Karen says, brushing off April's statement.
"Well, I didn't go to the store because I thought that we would be going out." April says as she is motioning towards the door.
Karen starts laughing.
"I'm sure I can figure something out." Karen says.
At this point, April snaps.
"No, no, mom, stop it! I don't... I don't need you to whip something up, and I didn't need you to come out here and set up my whole nursery." She says as Karen looks at her daughter.
Jackson stands up from his kneeling position.
"I don't need... I... I don't want your help! Do you understand?!" April asks her mother.
Karen is shocked.
"April." Jackson says as April turns to look at him. "Come on, that's not fair."
She looks at him with wide eyes.
April and Jackson are standing in a hallway, just outside of an examination room, talking to one another.
"Uh, you're the last person who gets to lecture me on avoiding my mother." She tells her husband.
"That's not true." He tells her. "My mother is a nightmare, and yours is the sweetest person I've ever met."
"No, what happened last night was not sweet. It was condescending."
"Come on, you're overreacting." He tells her.
"Yes, 'cause she just decided that I needed her help."
"I needed help." He admits.
She stares at him.
"I asked her for it, okay? I have no idea what the hell I'm doing here. I just spent four hours in that baby store, and my mind was blown. Do you know how much I don't know about having babies? So much." He says motioning with his hand as he sighs.
April looks down smiling just a little.
"And she knows everything and so do you, and it's easy for you guys. My family was not built that way."
She looks up at her husband.
"I didn't have grandparents falling over themselves trying to... love me, but lucky for us, our kid will." He says as he puts his right hand on her left shoulder as he looks directly into her apologetic eyes. "That is, provided that you do not drive her away first."
She knows that he’s right.
April and Stephanie walk out to the ambulance bay, April looks to her right.
"Edwards, start his work-up. I'll be there in a second."
"Copy that." Stephanie says as she moves to the ambulance.
"Man: 47-year-old male..." The paramedic says. "He was the passenger in a vehicle…"
April walks over to the nearby bench.
Her mother is sitting on the bench, luggage in tow.
"I thought your flight wasn't till later this afternoon." April says as she stands in front of her mother.
"I pushed it." Karen says. "You owe me an apology. And I'm not leaving until I get one."
"I owe you an apology?" April asks in disbelief.
"You were rude, and I raised you better. I understand you're very busy, and I understand you work hard, but..."
"Mom, I am not going to apologize for having the life that I want, even if you think...."
"April Kepner!" Karen reprimands. "You have made choices that are very different from mine, and it's scary. Any mother who watches her child do something she hasn't done herself... It's scary. But that doesn't mean I haven't been proud of you, and the more I see you in this world, in this work, in this marriage..."
April crosses her arms and looks away from her mother with a solemn look.
"The prouder I am. I have no earthly understanding of what it is you do, but I know a lot about babies, and I don't want to take anything away from you. I just want to help you. And I get to do that because I am a grandma. And I am also... your mother." Karen says.
April sighs as she sits down next to her mother.
"So, can I... Can I call you if I have questions?"
"Well... I suppose." Karen says.
"If you must" Karen says as she takes her daughter's hand in hers.
Jackson is sitting on a chair in the baby nursery when April is standing at the threshold, asking-
"How's the baby book?"
Jackson looks up from the book as he closes it.
"Um... It's the scariest thing I've ever read."
"I was a jerk today." She says with a sad smile.
"Yeah, you were." Jackson agrees.
"Uh, so, this is the part where you say, "No, you weren't the jerk. I was the jerk." She says as she walks up to him.
"Yeah, but I wasn't, and you were." He retorts playfully.
"Get up." April laughs. "I want to sit down."
"Okay." Jackson chuckles as he gets off the rocking chair.
April clears throat as she sits down on the chair.
"You built this?" April asks her husband.
"Twice, actually." He says partially confused at the idea. "I'm pretty sure there's something wrong with the directions."
"It's perfect. You did a good job." April says, and she stands up from the chair and walks up to her husband. "You're gonna be a great daddy."
"Thank you." He says as he looks into her eyes. "Thank you."
“You were such a bitch to your mom.” Jackson chuckles.
“Don’t remind me, you slow reader, you.” April groans.
“Don’t worry. I was a total ass to my mother.” He admits.
“That is very true.”
“Hey!” He giggles. “Let me be the one to freely express that to the world!”
It is night time and April is sitting outside on a bench waiting for her husband so that they can go home.
Jackson sighs as he spots his wife on the bench.
April looks up at her husband.
"I heard about your patient. You okay? Jackson asks as he sits down next to his wife.
She turns away.
"There was so much blood, Jackson. I mean, I know we see it all the time, but..." She says softly.
"Yeah." He says wrapping his arm around her shoulders.
"I just... I didn't think it was gonna stop."
"And I know it can be scary." He tells her.
April remains silent.
"But you and our baby are just fine." He says putting his hand on his wife's belly bump. "So do not worry, okay?"
"I'm not worried." She says.
She looks up at her husband.
"Are you worried?" She asks.
He looks up for a moment then looks back at his wife.
"All the time. How can you not be?"
She puts her head in the crook of his neck.
"You know how."
"Right. It's all in God's hands." He says as he's rubbing her belly.
"Yeah. God, I don't know how you can do that... just write off all the unanswered questions."
"We don't get to know the answers. That's your answer." She says. "I don't know why that woman had to die tonight."
"She exsanguinated. That's why."
"Yeah, okay. But why?"
"Because all of it just... All of it just happened."
She looks up at him.
"You're really comfortable with that answer?" She asks him with a smile on her face.
"See, I don't know how you do that." She tells him.
They both laugh as they are enjoying each other's company on the bench.
“It is good to talk about the good times from my first pregnancy.” April says.
“I don’t blame you. We didn’t have so many worries at all.” Jackson says.
“I know.” April sighs.
Now for the hard part of her pregnancy.
"Edwards?" April asks as the door closes.
She's lying down, waiting to check out the growing baby in her belly.
"Hi." Stephanie greets.
"What are you doing here?" April asks her colleague.
"I am interested in fetal surgery, and Dr. Webber said that I could do some O.B. ultrasounds, so..."
"So, you're doing my ultrasound?" April asks.
"Unless you don't want me to." Stephanie says.
"No, no, no, it's fine. You got to learn...On me."
"I mean, it's fine with me either way." Stephanie says as April puts the gel on her tummy.
"No, it's all good." She says. "We don't want to know the sex, so I'm not gonna look." April says as she lays back.
"I will do all of the looking." Stephanie says as she starts examining April. "All right, so, there are the feet and the toes. He's breech, sitting cross-legged like a little Buddha."
"Yeah, he does that."
The elevator bell dings as April realizes something.
"Oh, my God."
"What?" Stephanie asks.
"You said "he."
"No, I didn't.
April says as she lays back.
"I will do all of the looking." Stephanie says as she starts examining April. "All right, so, there are the feet and the toes. He's breech, sitting cross-legged like a little Buddha."
"Yeah, he does that."
The elevator bell dings as April realizes something.
"Oh, my God."
"What?" Stephanie asks.
"You said "he."
"No, I didn't."
"Yeah, you did. You said "he."
"No." Stephanie says.
"You said "he."
"Oh." Stephanie gasps as she realized that she did in fact say "he".
"Oh, oh, God."
"I just said I didn't want to know the sex!" April groans as she puts her hands behind her head in frustration.
"I'm sorry. I'm sorry. It was a rookie mistake."
The door opens.
"Oh!" He says as he walks in and closes the door.
"How's it looking in h... "
Stephanie looks at him.
"Hey. Stephanie." Jackson says awkwardly.
"Why...?" He starts to ask, but she answers him before he can finish the question.
"I'm practicing." She says looking at the monitor in front of her.
"Okay. Yeah. Mm-hmm."
"Yeah." April says.
"Um, all right, well, just don't let her know the sex." Jackson tells Stephanie.
"Oh, no." April says as she looks at Stephanie. "No, she says the baby's sitting like a little Buddha, just like last time."
"Last time?" A confused Stephanie asks as she looks at the mother-to-be.
She quickly turns to the screen.
"Hey, there, little... thing, you." Jackson says.
"All right, well, I got surgeries most of the day, so I'm gonna miss our lunch. Sorry." He says.
"Aw." April says as Stephanie is double checking her findings.
"Torres might get one of our guys back up on his feet today, and I'm gonna miss that, too."
"Ohh. But, yay, you guys. Good luck" April tells her husband as Stephanie is still pre-occupied with her findings.
"All right." He says as he leans down to kiss his wife.
Keys are clacking in the back ground as Stephanie is in the zone.
Jackson looks at Stephanie curiously for a quick moment before he walks away.
Stephanie's eyes are glued to the screen.
The door opens and closes a second later.
"And I just lied to my husband." April says as she grabs a dark cloth to wipe the gel off of her belly. "That's a great way to start parenthood lying. Awesome. Thanks, Edwards."
Stephanie looks at her as April wipes the last off the gel off of her belly.
"I'm really sorry, but we're not done."
"Oh, we're done." April says.
She grunts as she gets up from the examination table.
A moment later, the door opens and the computer is beeping as Stephanie is paying close attention to it, worried.
Sometime after April’s appointment, Jackson has heard some devastating news. After hearing the news, he starts contemplating on his next move.
Later on, Jackson is readying himself as he's going inside the empty examination room to talk to his wife.
"Hi." She greets as her husband walks in.
They talk for less than a minute and April’s smile completely falls.
She runs out of the room.
Jackson is left alone until he knocks over some of the items on the desk in the room.
“Hearing that was hard.” April says solemnly.
“Telling you the news wasn’t any fun either.” Jackson says. “I was scared.”
“It was hell.” April states.
"Dr. Avery, a word?" April says irritably as she spots Jackson.
"Uh... Excuse me. One second." He tells the patient's father and the police man.
"Hey. You all right?" He asks as they walk down the hallway. "I'll get somebody to cover for me, and we can just go home..."
"What is wrong with you?" She asks, highly irritated. "Letting a cop interrogate a 5-year-old?"
"They... Needed to know..." He says, sporting a confused look as he tries to take a step towards his wife, but she takes a step back.
"Those two kids were almost killed by their mother. T-they are... they're terrified." She says as Jackson tries to put his hands on her shoulder, but she takes another step back.
"Okay. Slow down. They're- they're in shock. Listen, listen, I think you're in shock, actually."
"They shouldn't even be down here. Get them out of here. Get them someplace safe. Get them admitted."
"Okay. Let's just go home."
She huffs angrily as she looks down for a moment before she looks back at her husband.
"Have you seen those people in there?! What that woman did?!"
"I know, and there are plenty of people here that can take care of them, right?" He says as he tries to open his arms to console his wife, but she isn't having it. "You need to..."
"I... I need to be in an O.R. But you seem to be making all sorts of decisions for me today." She says letting the anger out.
"I'm trying to help you." He calmly states.
"Yeah, well, you're not helping. You go to Owen, and then two men decide what they think is best for the little lady, like I'm some helpless idiot, and then I suddenly find myself standing outside of my O.R.? That... that... that is not helping!" She says as he looks around in disbelief.
"Why don't you tell me what is, then?" He snaps. "Talk to me instead of running away. Tell me what you need. Tell me what I can do. Tell me how you feel. Tell me something... anything. Say something. Talk to me. I'm trying to help you. That's all I'm trying to do here!"
She covered her face as he's talking to her.
April looks up as she removes her hands from her face.
"Okay, okay. You want to help?" She asks, very irritated.
"Yes." He says automatically.
"Just get that family into a room and stitch up that girl's face." April says as her rant is over.
Jackson watches April as his wife walks away.
“I’m sorry, babe.” She says in a sad tone.
“Why?” A confused Jackson says.
“For running away, not letting you be there for me.” She says.
He kisses her cheek as he wraps his arms around her.
Jackson sighs as he walks into the supply room.
He grabs the supplies he needs off the rack, only to put them down and his arm around the metal bar of the wrack that holds it up. He
seems.... is extremely worried.
He is breathing deeply and after a moment alone, the door opens.
A throat clears.
"Everything okay?" Richard asks.
Jackson turns around and he looks at his stepfather.
Jackson starts laughing, and he turns around and leans against the rack, still laughing, but not out of humor until he starts crying.
He wipes his tears away, whimpers, and looks up at Richard.
Richard simply looks at Jackson, concerned.
Jackson inhales deeply.
"No." Jackson responds.
Richard still looks at Jackson.
"Everything is not ok." He says as he regains his composure.
“Man, makes me want to hear a sad song.” April says.
"Okay, that should prevent any tamponading." Maggie says, finishing up the procedure on the patient as one of the nurses takes the phone away from April's ear. "One woman loses it, and look at all the damage she can do."
"There's a chest contusion with intermittent arrhythmias in bed 6. Can you take a look at that next?" April asks Maggie as she turns around.
"Mm-hmm." Maggie agrees. "Boy or girl?"
"What?" April asks, distracted as she turns around to look at Maggie.
"Oh, are you guys not finding out?" Maggie asks, suprised. "I am such a control freak."
April turns around as she holds her belly while Maggie is speaking.
"I don't think I could handle not knowing. I would want to have a list of names in mind. That would be the hardest part, I think... choosing the name."
"Bed 6, consult now, please." April reminds her.
The door opens.
It’s Stephanie walking into the room.
"Uh, I'm looking for Greg James. Is he still down here?"
"I need to talk to you." April tells Stephanie.
"Okay." Stephanie says as they step out of the room and walk into another room. "So, you talked to Jackson. Are you... are you okay? Can I do anything?"
"You saw something on my ultrasound."
"Yes, you saw something, and you didn't say anything." April says, highly agitated.
"I-I know. I wasn't-" Stephanie starts, but April cuts her off.
"I was right there in the room. It was my baby, and you said nothing. Nothing."
"I just wanted to be sure before I told you." Stephanie says as she is defending her actions.
"Oh, but you had no problem going and telling other people. You had no problem telling Jackson before I even had a chance to process."
“To have you, of all people, knowing before I did..." April says motioning at nothing at all.
"I'm sorry." Stephanie repeats.
“Yeah, well, you should be." April sighs before she turns away from Stephanie.
Stephanie can only look at her.
April turns back at her.
"Mr. James is upstairs. His kids were admitted.” April says as she walks away.
April walks away from Stephanie, steps into back the room, and the door slams.
“I am April. Hear me roar.” Jackson says, imitating The Hulk.
“God, Jackson, you’re so stupid.” April laughs.
“Thank you. Thank you.” He say, stepping back to give her a bow.
As Callie is at a station tending to a patient who's arm is dislocated, April walks up to her.
"Are you almost done here?"
"I've got two tib-fib fractures and an l45 compression fracture in trauma 4."
"Okay. Hang on." Callie tells her. "All right, I'm gonna count to three, and then I'll do it, okay?" She tells the patient.
"Okay." He says.
"You ready?" Callie asks him.
"Yeah." He responds.
"Aah!" The guy exclaims.
"Ah. Always better when you don't see it coming." Callie tells him. "Go ahead and put a shoulder sling on him, please." Callie tells the woman that was holding the man up on the bed.
Callie turns away and gives her undivided attention to April.
"All right, Kepner. What's next?" She asks as she takes off her gloves.
"I already told you, if you'd been listening." April says, completely irritated.
Callie pulls the curtain that is behind her.
"What is going on?" Callie asks.
"No, you're not, and I know because I'm the queen of taking my personal crap out on other people... especially you. It looks like this." Callie says motioning to April's demeanor. "What's going on?"
"I-I don't want to talk about it." April responds.
"And I don't want you snapping at me." Callie retorts.
April just stands their, trying to figure out this whole situation.
"You can't have a baby." April states.
"Excuse me?" Callie says, somewhat offended.
"And it's what you want. All you want is to have a baby and love that baby and nurture that baby and raise that baby, and this woman this... " April is frustrated as she is motioning with her hands. "Woman throws her perfectly healthy kids off of a bridge. Doesn't that just enrage you?!"
"I'm saying... how are you not screaming right now at what she's done? To her kids? To all of these people?! How is any of this fair?!" April asks as Callie is trying to calm her colleague down.
"April! April. April. Okay." Callie says. "Now-"
"Patients are waiting." April says.
She walks away and Callie just stands there, baffled.
"Take her up to the I.C.U. and check her coags every hour." April tells the nurse.
April sighs as she walks into the waiting room.
"Who's next?" She calls out.
"That's it." Jackson tells her.
She turns around and sees her husband behind the desk, sitting at a computer while Owen is looking at his tablet.
"Take a look at the board, babe."
April looks at the board.
It's completely blank.
"Everyone's been either admitted or discharged." Jackson tells her.
"No, there were... there were at least 25 patients here." She says walking up to the desk.
"And you treated every one." Owen tells her. "It's damn good you were down here." He says as he pats her on the shoulder, leaving the couple to talk.
April sighs and simply stands at the desk.
Jackson gets up from the chair and walks over to his wife.
"Listen, um... You and I have a real chance here, you know?"
April makes her way over to him.
"We're able to see this thing coming." He tells his wife as she puts her elbow on the counter and simply holds her head as she's looking down. "Then we are gonna find out exactly what it is and prepare ourselves. I already talked to Arizona. She's gonna sit down with us. We're gonna get some answers."
"I already have answers." She says as she pulls her hand away from her head, looking at everything but Jackson for the moment. "Jackson, I spent all night looking it up. I pulled case study after case study."
"Yeah, I did the same thing, but those are other cases." He says.
"There are four types of osteogenesis imperfecta, ranging from a manageable disability to completely fatal. Types II and III are the most severe." She states.
"I'm talking about our baby." He says in a clipped tone, looking at her.
"So am I." She says, finally looking up at him. "I studied my ultrasounds. Best case... our kid gets surgery after surgery. Worst case... our kid lives only minutes after birth."
They have a moment of silence.
"I don't... I don't need answers. What I needed today was just... To do something, to treat things I could treat, to help people I could help." April sighs as her husband is looking at her as if she were broken. "At the very least, undo some of the damage this lunatic woman did to her kids and all of these people here." April says as she is rolling her eyes, pinching the bridge of her nose.
"She had a tumor."
April suddenly looks up at her husband....looking shocked and sad.
"It turns out she had an insulinoma. Causes cognitive deficits. Hunt told me all about it. Look, she was not trying to hurt anyone. She had... no control."
April looks up, then looks around, then walks away from the desk, and out through the doors used at the ambulance bay, sighing as he hits her thighs with her hands.
Jackson follows her out of the doors.
She stops walking and places her hand on her head.
"Why?" She asks as her husband stands by the doors.
Thunder rumbles in the back.
"Why would that happen?" She asks as her husband walks closer to her. "Why would God give her kids, give her a family, and let that... why would God let that happen?! I-I don't understand it!" She exclaims as she's motioning to everything.
He stares at her.
"You can do everything right, and I-it doesn't even..." She sighs as she looks up. "Why?" Why asks with her eyes closed.
"I don't know." He says after a moment.
"I don't know." He repeats.
He takes a step towards her but she puts her hands out.
"I... I just... I don't want you to hold me, 'cause if you hold me, I'll start to cry, and I don't want to start crying. 'Cause if I start crying, I... I will not be able to stop. I will never be able to stop." She says, trying to be strong, but it's failing.
"Okay." She repeats, taking a deep breathe, closing her eyes. "Okay."
"Whatever you need... I'm here." He tells her.
She looks up at him with a tearful expression.
Suddenly, she starts sobbing.
"Did I tell you that it's a boy?" She asks him with her voice breaking.
He looks at her, then her belly, then back at her with wide eyes.
"We're having a boy." She says through her tears.
April finally breaks as Jackson immediately holds her.
All she can do is breakdown and cry as she is holding on to Jackson.
It is another day at the hospital as April and Jackson are in the examination room, waiting for the official prognosis.
April looks up in the sky with her hand on her chest as Jackson puts his hand on her belly for support.
"Okay, you're gonna feel a little bit of pressure." Arizona says as she injects the needle in April's belly.
"And this will tell us conclusively if the osteogenesis imperfecta is type II or III?" Jackson asks Arizona as he is stroking his wife's hair.
"Yeah." Arizona says.
"It's probably type III though, right?" April asks, hopeful. "I mean, so far there's been no indication of fetal distress."
"Well, we'll know soon enough." Arizona says as the whooshing continues within the small room.
"It'll be okay." April says as she looks at her husband. "O.I. type III, it's hard, sure, when there's surgeries and challenges, but we're surgeons. We can... We can handle challenges, right?"
"I mean, we'll... We'll still be able to give our baby a wonderful life. Right?"
"Many type III babies live very, very happy lives." Arizona reassures them.
Jackson looks at his wife's belly as Arizona is pressing two fingers into it.
"Shouldn't Dr. Herman be doing this?" He asks Arizona.
"Mm, it's a very routine procedure." She says as she is wielding another needle. "Dr. Herman is the big gun. We only fire the big gun when we need the big gun. I'm the little gun, so...Let the little gun work." She finishes with a whisper.
She injects April's belly with the needle and the couple turn to the monitor, looking at their baby.
"So I think we need to talk about what we'll decide if it turns out the baby's type II." Jackson says as they are leaving the exam room.
"I already told you, he won't be."
"Yeah, I know that's what you believe. So do I, obviously. But if he is type II, then it's so terrible..."
April sighs as they turn a corner.
“Usually. All right? And before that, it's even worse.”
“I... I know all of this. I just... I don't wanna talk about it. But we should talk about it. We need to talk about it.”
“W-why? Why can't we just wait until tomorrow?”
“Because we should have a plan. What do you mean?” He asks his wife as they are walking into the waiting room.
“Okay, well, uh, what do you wanna do?”
“That's what I'm saying. I think we should decide.”
The stop walking as April turns and looks at him.
“No, no. I'm... I'm... I'm asking what you want.”
“I want for us to figure this out together.”
“I don't... I don't think that's true. I think that you already know what you would wanna do. So...”
“What?” He asks.
“Just... yeah, just say it out loud.”
“Don't-” He starts as he looks around.
“Right now. Well, what do you wanna do?
Jackson sighs deeply before he speaks.
April looks at him, impatiently waiting for his answer.
“If our baby is type II, I... I think we should terminate.”
“And I don't care whether our baby is type II or type III.” April says as her voice breaks. “Either way, I wanna keep him.” April states as she turns away from him.
“I told you I didn't wanna talk about this.” April states as she walks away.
Jackson stares after her.
April and Jackson are now sitting on in the wait room, discussing their predicament.
"The longest documented surviving type II case that I could find lived for all of 18 months." Jackson says. "In an I.C.U. his entire life, hooked up to a feeding tubes and a ventilator. That's not a life. That's not a life I want for my son."
"I... of c... neither do I. I... "
"Okay. So then how can you-"
"Because we don't know what will happen. We don't even know if he's type II." April says.
"Okay, but what if he is?" Jackson asks.
April looks at him.
"Any amount of time that he survives... Any amount of time that he lives will be-" He whsipers, but he gets cut off.
"Will be with us, in our arms," April says as she crosses her arms and puts her hands on her chest.
"Yes." Jackson says, irritated.
"Knowing that he's loved and wanted."
"And his bones can break if you touch him. His bones can break if we're changing his diaper." Jackson softly says.
"We're doctors. We can handle it. If... if anyone can handle it, we can."
"I'm not saying we can't handle it. I'm asking if we should. Yeah, we're doctors. Maybe we are better equipped to make an educated decision here."
"And maybe we were given this baby for a reason." April says.
"April." Karen calls out as she enters the hospital with her luggage.
The couple turns.
"You called your mom." Jackson asks, but it more comes off as a statemeny.
"Yeah. People need their mom in a crisis." April tells him as she stands up, walking towards her mother.
"No, not everybody does." He says.
Karen rushes towards her daughter and wraps her arms around her daughter.
"I came as soon as I got your call, sweetie. It's okay. Everything's gonna be okay. I'm here." Karen says, patting her daughter's shoulder as Jackson walks towards them.
Karen exhales deeply as she pulls away from her daughter.
"Are you working today?" She asks.
"No." Jackson replies, shaking his head.
"No." April says as she looks at her mother.
"Then let's get out of here. You could use a change of scenery." Karen suggests looking at them.
"That's actually a really good idea." Jackson says.
April turns to look at her husband, nodding at him.
"We should take the day, go somewhere nice, maybe drive to the ocean." He suggests.
"Let's go to church." Karen says.
April turns around to face her mother.
"You'll find comfort there." Karen says.
Jackson looks at her with an expression that literally screams 'Really, woman? Really?'
The women both look at Jackson.
"Yeah, go ahead." He relents.
"Let's go pray." Karen says as she puts an arm around her daughter and leads them out of the hospital.
Jackson simply watches the women leave.
It's night time, and April is in the kitchen, peeling a carrot.
The door opens and closes.
"Oh, good! You're home! Just in time for dinner." Karen exclaims as she takes a full bowl from the counter to the table.
"Smells good." Jackson says.
April smiles a bit.
"How was church?" He asks, putting his back down.
"The choir was there, practicing for their service tomorrow night." Karen says as Jackson takes off his jacket. "Really beautiful. We should all go to it."
"Ah, I don't think we'll know what we'll be up for tomorrow, Karen."
"Because of the test results?" Karen asks as she grabs the hot baking dish with a pair of oven mits. "April told me about the test, and I told her there's really no point in even getting those results."
"Excuse me?" Jackson asks as he stops fiddling with his jacket, looking at his wife, who's peeling more carrots.
"God gives what he wants to give. No test is going to change that. And April's already so upset, so stressed. It's not good for the baby. Just focus on loving that sweet little baby. That's all that matters."
"No, that's definitely not all that matters." Jackson says.
"I know. It's hard to understand sometimes how His plan will unfold." Karen says as she puts the dish on the table.
"Yeah, but I'm not worried about His plan, am I? I'm worried about our plan." Jackson says as Karen is grabbing the table settings.
"He never gives us more than we can handle." Karen reassures him.
"Getting the results, being informed about our baby's condition, that's how we handle it." Jackson says as he lookes at who's occupied with her carrots.
"I called our pastor at home. April spoke to him at length. He was very helpful."
"April." He says as he walks up to kitchen island.
She looks up at him.
"Me. Let me help you."
"Whatever happens, we will shoulder the burden - when it is placed upon us." Karen says moving around.
"We will. You and I. We'll shoulder the burden."
"She's just trying to help." April says once she looks up at him before turning away from him.
"Is she, though?" Jackson asks. "Really? Is she helping?"
"Don't snap at her. Don't talk to her in that tone." Karen tells him.
An argument is now beginning to start.
"What tone?" Jackson asks his mother-in-law. "I'm not talking using a tone. I'm trying to understand."
"You're trying to talk my little girl into doing something she knows in her heart and soul she does not want to do."
"I'm not trying to talk her into anything. I'm supporting her in trying to make the best choice possible for our baby, for her, for our family."
"This is between April and her God."
"Okay." Jackson scoffs.
"And if you think she is going to agree - to abort her child-"
"Get that straight. It's our child."
"Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it!" April snaps.
Her mother and husband stops bickering and looks at her.
"None of this is helping! You are not helping, neither of you. I am standing here, listening to you tell me that God only gives me one choice," She says motioning to her mother. "-and you telling me that I should forgo God's choice." She says motioning to her husband. "And the truth is, I don't know anything expect that I am scared and sad and I'm alone. You're both just standing there, yelling at each other and talking at me, but I am alone, and it is terrifying! And the louder you get, the more terrified I become, so I just need you both to just shut up! Can you... Can you do that? Can you please... can you please both just shut up?!"
They both stare at April.
April turns away from them and she exhales shakily as the other two are still staring at her.
Later that night, Jackson finds April lying down on their bed.
He crawls in bed, wrapping his arms around her belly.
The next day, the couple is in the examination room holding hands as they are in separate chairs.
Jackson takes a deep breathe before he releases it.
The door opens and the couple looks up.
Arizona walks in.
"It'll be a minute." She says after she closes the door.
April looks at her.
Jackson looks at her very closely.
"Okay." He says slowly.
April turns to him.
"What?" April asks.
"This is a big guns conversation, isn't it?"
Arizona simply looks at them.
She sighs sharply.
The door opens.
It's Dr. Herman.
"April, Jackson, we have your test results." She tells them.
They are silent.
"With type III, we're dealing with a lot of things. We're looking at: birth, mildly shortened and bowed limbs, small chests, and a soft calvarium, respiratory and swallowing problems are common in newborns,possible multiple long-bone fractures at birth, including many rib fractures, frequent fractures of the long bones, the tension of muscle on soft bone, and the disruption of the growth plates lead to bowing and progressive malformation. I can go on and on, but even though it is a severe case, you will be able to carry your baby."
The couple remains silent.
April burries her face in Jackson's neck.
Tears are falling from their eyes.
It's going to be a long journey, but everything will be fine.
'Thank God.' Jackson thinks to himself.
Maybe right there and then, he believes in a higher power after all.
"Okay." April says as she pulls away from her husband. "What happens now? What do we do?"
"Man, he's so tiny." Jackson says as April has just given birth to little Samuel Norbert Avery. "I'm just- this is- I feel so....blessed."
"What?" April asks through her tears.
"I feel so blessed right now. Even though we have a lot of challenges ahead of us with little Sammy here, everything feels complete."
"So, how does it feel, now that we are parents, Jackman?" She asks he husband as she is staring at their little bundle of joy.
"Right. It feels right." He says as he moves to kiss the both of their foreheads.
‘It’s going to be hard, but I feel complete.’ Jackson thinks to himself.
"I didn't think that we would be so blessed." Jackson states.
"Who knew that something that could've been so bad, make you so....religious?" April asks.
"Shut up." Jackson laughs.
"But seriously, did you ever think what would've happened if we weren't so lucky?"
"Yeah, I did. After Sammy's first surgery." Jackson admits. "I think we would've gone through tremendous hell and that there was no way to ever come back from it."
"Me too. It wasn't a nice thought at all." April says solemnly. “My thoughts consisted in going off to the other side of the world, come back, go back to Jordan, have lots and lots of fights, have sex, get divorced, find out that I am pregnant, more fighting, custody battles, giving birth on a table, co-parenting, me dating and you getting jealous, more fights, sleeping together after we meet your father, not interacting with one another, you dating Maggie.”
“Well damn, that’s specific.” Jackson says.
“I told you that it wasn’t nice.” April says.
“Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m happy that didn’t happen to us.”
“I know.” April says.
"Look at the bright side."
"Bright side?" April asks.
"At least Sammy had a Nike fetish like I did."
"You and your damn Nikes." She says.
"You're damn right." He agrees, chuckling.
Chapter 21: Questions
“Was that when you started to think of me as more than just a friend?”
“I don’t know.” He honestly tells her. “I do know that after the shooting, you were the only one to help me cope with the aftermath. The night before the boards. Confessing your love for me after the bus explosion. Who knows.”
“The wedding was my favorite though.”
“Because of what you said.” She tells him.
“And what did I say?” He asks, testing her.
“I love you, April. I always have. I love everything about you. Even the things I don't like, I love. And I want you with me. I love you, and I think that you love me too. Do you?" She repeats.
“Best decision I ever made.” Jackson says.
“Dancing.” She says.
“Dancing in the attendings’ lounge.”
“We’re having a baby.” She sings.
“We’re having a baby.” He repeats.
“We’re having a baby.” They sing in unison.
They both start laughing.
“That was a good day.”
"How about when I was pregnant with Harriet?"
"Terrified, but at least that one was a breeze, even with your potty mouth and bitchy attitude."
"Pregnancy wasn't fun at all." She says as she shudders.
“You know what the best day was?” Jackson asks.
“Your 42nd birthday. Eating waffles, Sunday football, yelling at our kids.”
“Didn’t you call them noisy calendars?” She remembers.
“See?! You remember more that you think you do."
“What’s your favorite memory of me?” He asks.
“I’ll have to say when you told your mom that you believed that I was the one.”
“Wanna know mine?”
“Lay it on me.” She says.
“When you slapped me on the back of my head, when we were at the table drinking beer.”
“When you were looking at that one girl who was looking for a glass?”
“That’s the one!”
April slaps him upside the head, again, in the exact same spot.
“What was that for?” He says, rubbing the area where she hit him.
“Because that smirk of yours still pissed me off.”
“It’s been years!” He laughs.
“So what? You were my person!” She says defending herself.
“You’re my person too.” He says.
They hear thunder rumbling.
"What is it, Jackson?" She worries. "What's going on?"
"You're not gonna believe this, but-"
"God, April." He introduces. "April, God."
She looks up, to her left.
"Wow, now I see where Jesus got those eyes." She says, completely mesmerized. "Hello." She says to God.
"He's talking." Jackson says, shushing her.
"Yeah, yes, I understand, God." Jackson says. "I know these things happen."
They hear more rumbling.
"What?" He asks. "I couldn't hear you that well.
"Well, if you insist." He says.
April is confused for a bit.
Suddenly, he starts imitating Whoopi Goldberg's character from Ghost. "You can't just blurt it out like that! And quit moving around, because you're starting to make me dizzy. I'll just tell her in my own way." He pauses. "Molly, you in danger, girl."
"Jackson, you look so sad. What's wrong?"
"God says it's not your time yet." He says regrettably. "You gotta go back, April."
"But I wanna be with you. I don't wanna go back." She says sadly.
"He pretty much gets his way in these things." He says as he shrugs sadly. "Besides, someone's got to take care of my little spumoni-face and home skillet biscuit.
"Who?" A confused April asks.
"Sam and Harriet. When I worked late, I'd come home, we had our little secret ice cream club, and that was the nickname I gave them."
"And what was their nickname for you?"
"The cool parent." He says with a smile on his face.
Thunder rumbles again.
"It's time, April."
"Do I have to?" She asks, face wet with her tears.
"Don't be so sad." Jackson tells her as he is wiping her tears away. "We'll be together again."
“I love you, Jackson.”
“And I love you.”
“And tell my little homies something. Tell them that I'm proud of them.”
He turns away from her.
“Wait! One more thing!” She yells as she's chasing him.
Chapter 22: The Lost Carving
April Finds The Carving.
“Yes?” He says.
“You think I can be ok?” April asks him once she reaches him.
“If I didn't, would I have made the trip?” He answers.
“I miss you, Jack.” She tells him. “I miss you so much, Jackman.”
“Hey, I'm always with you.” He reassures her. “And when the time's right, see you at my place.”
“Promise?” She asks with her tears falling.
Jackson pecks her lips.
“I promise. You are worth the wait.” He says as he disappears.
“Ma.” Harriet says.
“Ma.” Harriet repeats.
“What is it, sweetheart?” April asks a she wakes up.
“Ma, we thought that we should just go out for dinner tonight and maybe catch a movie.” Sam says.
“Yeah! And maybe you can tell us more stories about being an Avery!” José says.
“Oh boy. See what you did?” Kimmie playfully asks her niece and nephew.
“Can we watch The Jungle Book on Netflix if there aren’t any good movies at the theater?” José asks.
“Maybe.” Kimmie says as she opens the door to her closet.
April’s eyes widen as she quickly scrambles off of the bed.
“What’s wrong, Aunt April?” José asks.
“Sam! Harriet! Oh, my God!” She says. “Can you believe it?”
“Okay, maybe we can watch another movie.” José suggests.
“Harriet! Sammy, look! It's the carving.” April says as she walks up to the door. “See? ‘Jackson loves April’.
“Oh, Ma!” Sam says as he and his sister move to hug their mother.
“That’s really your name on your door?” José asks.
“That's right, little man.” April tells the young boy. “And I remembered.” She says to her kids. “I mixed up the rooms, but I remembered. Of course. I thought the carving was in the kitchen. Jackson used to live in the kitchen, and used to hide food in the closet. “I may be fading, but I'm still holding on to some of the big things.”
“Yeah, and you might get more back.” Harriet says.
“Might?” She says incredulously. “I insist! All I need is a little more spunk. Imagine finding that carving in here! Kitchen, bedroom - I knew it was a room I was good in!” She says as Kimmie grabs a jacket.
“So, who’s up for Italian?” Sam asks.
“I am!” José and Harriet say in unison.
“Let’s roll.” Sam says as they all leave the room.
April scurries back to the room and grabs the picture from the night stand. She kisses it, and puts it back in her purse.
“Thank you, for everything.” She says as she looks up in the sky with a smile on her face.