Chapter 9 - It'll All Be Alright

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-April 4, 2017, morning-

"Any problems so far?" Dr. Darnell asked.

"No, not really but... uhhh... I was told a while ago that I would not be able to get pregnant... so..." Natasha started.

"Well, you definitely are. We'll take a closer look when I do the ultrasound," she confirmed. "Have you been getting morning sickness?" Dr. Darnell asked Natasha.

"Yes, I have," Natasha answered. Steve thought she sounded nervous which was so unusual. He sat near her head as the doctor examined her.

"Is it getting a little better lately?" she asked, fixing the cover on Natasha's legs.

"Uhhh, no not yet," Natasha answered.

"Okay, we will follow up on that at your next appointment," Dr. Darnell said, removing her latex gloves. "Your due date is October 25th." She walked to the ultrasound machine and pulled it to the table.

Steve watched as the doctor squirted gel on Natasha's tiny stomach and she jarred a little at the cold temperature. It was hard for him to imagine her stomach as anything but tiny.

Dr. Darnell moved the wand around on Natasha's stomach and soon they heard sounds as if they were underwater. Steady, beating sounds streamed through the speakers. "That's your baby's heartbeat," she said. "Sounds perfect." She showed them on the screen where the baby's head and heart were.

Steve looked to Natasha, smiling, and he noticed that her eyes were glistening as she looked back at him.

"I'll take a few pictures for you," Dr. Darnell said and then moved the wand to a different area. "I see you do have quite a bit of scar tissue here..." She then moved the wand to the other side of her stomach. "And there's some scar tissue here but not nearly as much." She looked to Natasha for a reaction. "I take it this is a surprise to you...?"

"Yes," Natasha answered, her voice broken. "But it's a good surprise," she said. Steve reached out for her hand.


Natasha was quiet on the drive home from the doctor's office. She sat in the passenger seat looking through the ultrasound pictures. Steve glanced over every once in awhile to see if she was okay. She seemed fine, though she was in her own world. He rested a hand on her knee. "Do you need to stop anywhere on the way back?"

She turned to look at him, a little smile dusting her face. "No, not today," she said. "Besides, I want to get back and see my little Meg."

"You mean the shoe ruiner?" Steve laughed.

"Yes, the show ruiner... one of us has pretty much always been with her or we've only been gone about two hours." She looked at the clock on the dashboard. "We're going on three hours now."

"I'm glad Dr. Darnell said everything looks good, it's a relief," Steve said.

"Were you worried?"

"Well... just nervous, I guess. I mean, this is all new for us," he smiled.

Natasha looked out the door as they drove. "So I have more scar tissue on one side... which I'm guessing means that side is sealed off." She sighed, "Maybe they used a shoddy doctor to perform my procedure."

"I guess we should be thankful for that - maybe the shoddy doctor gave us a chance," he said.

"Yeah," she said, trailing off.

After a moment of silence, Steve said softly, "Babe?"

She looked at him, her face a little sad now. "What if I can't handle all of this?"

Steve pulled the truck into a parking lot and turned to her. "What if you can't handle this?" he asked. "Tasha, you're the most capable person I know. You've never not handled a situation." He looked at her face. "We may not be perfect but we'll love this baby... and there are two of us to tag team."

She looked into Steve's face. "You're right, I guess this whole thing is still such a big shock to me. I just don't want to mess up."

"I think all parents probably feel that way," he said with a little grin. He reached over to lay his hand on her stomach. "But I know this little baby is going to be loved... I know that."

Natasha laid her hand on top of his and smiled. "How are you so calm?"

"I'm sure I'll have my moments," he said. He kissed her gently. "I love you both."

Natasha kissed him again. "I love you too... and I love that you shaved again. It's a crime to keep that chin from me."


When they got home, Natasha unlocked the back door and stepped into the kitchen. Steve was right behind her and he watched as she made a horrible face and stepped back out the door. She started dry heaving on the back porch.

"Morning sickness?" he asked.

"No... I think Meg pooped in her crate..." she said, still bent over.

Steve laughed, "Okay, you stay here, I'll take care of it." He ran into the house like he was running into a burning building. Natasha listened at the back door. "Awwwww, Meg, no!" he said dramatically. She couldn't help but giggle. "Meg, Meg, Meg... oh, man. How am I going to get you out of here...?"

A minute later, Steve called out, "Honey, it's safe to come in now... I'm taking Meg upstairs for a bath."

"Okay," Natasha called back and walked in the house as she heard Steve running up the stairs. She cracked a couple of windows open and sprayed some air freshener before heading upstairs to join them. She could hear Steve talking to the dog and she stopped to listen.

"Was this an accident? Or are you mad at us?" He laughed and turned the water off. His voice was echoing in the bathroom with the sound of water moving. "Now, Meg, I know you're trying hard but we gotta nip this in the bud... we have a baby coming now. You've gotta be a good big sister, a good influence. We don't want the baby thinking it's okay to poop in the house..." Steve laughed at himself.

Natasha stood in the doorway, watching them. All of Meg's fur was soaking wet. "Awww, Meggie," she said. "You're like a third of your normal size, you poor little thing."

"She does look little," Steve said, looking up at Natasha. He continued scrubbing her and rinsing her. "Meg, you can't poop in the house, it makes your mom sick," he said to the puppy.

Natasha knelt down next to the tub. "Aww, but you're so cute, I can't stay mad at you." She looked at Steve, "You're pretty good at this, you know."

"Well, this house is going to see plenty more poop in the next couple of years..." he laughed. "I better get good at it." He reached in the tub to pat Meg on the head. "I dragged her crate out onto the porch for now... I'll clean it, don't touch it."

Natasha reached up to play with the back of his hair. "You're incredibly hot right now, you know. Must be the whole dad thing you've got going on..." she laughed at herself.

Steve raised an eyebrow at her. "Oh really? Well maybe after I clean up all the poop I can show you some appreciation..." he laughed, "and I just killed the mood, didn't I?" He chuckled as he lifted the dog out of the tub and onto a towel.

"I can dry her if you want to go take care of the crate," Natasha said. She sat down on the floor and started to dry Meg with the towel. "Yes, let's get you dry," she said to the puppy. "You are so sweet." Steve watched his two girls from the doorway with a smile. An overwhelming feeling of pride washed over him as he thought about what a good mom Natasha was going to be. He took another gaze at them before heading outside to clean the crate.

Steve stepped back into the living room after cleaning up and looked to Natasha on the couch, her head back and her eyes closed. Meg was laying on her legs and the house was very quiet. He took his phone out and snapped a photo of the adorable duo before quietly heading upstairs to clean himself up.

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