“Waahhhh! Waaaaaahhhhhh! WAAAAHHHH!”
When Phil heard the baby monitor send the cries of his daughter into the bedroom, he knew it would be his responsibility to take care of her. Though evenly splitting other parenting duties came easily to Dan and Phil, nighttime soothing was harder to share. Dan, already a naturally heavy sleeper, was even harder to wake because of the intense sleep deprivation that came with taking care of their newborn. Phil wasn’t very good at sleeping through the night anyways so he didn’t mind waking up often but he could never soothe their baby Ella as easily as Dan could. While Phil was better at keeping her entertained during the day, Dan was inherently better at lulling Ella to sleep. The same warmth that would often cause puppies to fall asleep on his chest worked just as effectively on infants. However, Phil knew nothing would wake Dan tonight so he put his glasses on, rolled out of bed, and sleepily headed to the nursery.
He stepped into the pastel green room and was greeted by Ella’s piercing cries, loud enough to drown out the sounds coming from the white noise machine on the other side of the room. Phil looked into the crib to see his daughter, red in the face and mouth open wide enough to accommodate her screams. He leaned over the crib, placing one hand under her head and the other behind her back. Carefully lifting her up, Phil brought his daughter close to his chest and held her in a secure embrace. He hugged her for several minutes, hoping her cries would soon subside. Her diaper was in no need of changing and, according to the carefully monitored schedule he and Dan maintained, she did not need to be fed for another few hours, so all Phil could do was calm her with gentle touch. Hearing no change in the intensity of her wails, Phil began to slowly and steadily pace around the nursery, rubbing her back in smooth circles. He tried to sing the lullaby that he and Dan used every night to put her to bed but Ella’s incessant cries overpowered every note her father attempted to hit. When he began to tire from pacing, Phil sat in the rocking chair next to the window and cradled Ella. He rocked her back and forth, glancing at the stars outside and wishing, for only a fleeting moment, that he could take a break from his new life. But looking back at the baby in his arms made Phil remember how grateful he was for his little one. She was so beautiful, even when her face was scrunched up and red. Her long eyelashes, chubby cheeks, and tiny nose made Phil smile at the distressed yet adorable being in his arms.
He was getting tired of how distressed she was though. Nothing he was doing seemed to work so Phil finally resorted to using reinforcement. He rose from the chair and carried Ella into the master bedroom where Dan was sleeping just as peacefully as ever. Phil approached the edge of the bed and gently laid Ella on his partner’s chest. At first, she squirmed, reaching up and pulling Dan’s nose. His eyes finally began to open and he smiled at the angry little infant on top of him.
“This is what you resort to, babe? Using my chest as our daughter’s crib?” Dan whispered to Phil, raising his eyebrows and grinning brightly despite his annoyed tone.
“Well, my parenting skills are worthless tonight so I thought your magical warmth would do the trick.”
Indeed, Dan’s warm chest did work magic. Ella’s cries softened to a murmur and her head rested on her father’s collarbone. Her other father gently scooped her into his arms once it seemed that she had fully drifted off. Phil returned to the nursery and put her back in the crib with a sigh.
“You’re a handful sometimes but it’s a good thing you’re so cute,” Phil muttered to the baby. He leaned down, kissed her on the forehead, and quietly trekked back to the bedroom.
Dan had already fallen back asleep when Phil entered their bedroom. He crawled back into bed and sprawled on top of his partner.
“It’s a good thing you’re so cute since I wouldn’t be able to put up with your supernatural dad powers otherwise,” Phil mumbled into Dan’s chest of eternal, magical warmth.