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This is How it Goes

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This story is No. 2 in the series "In Another Life". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: "I'm not giving birth in an elevator!" (six months after In Another Life)

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Television > Numb3rs > Willow - CenteredLylFR1318301153,7825 Jul 095 Jul 09Yes
Disclaimer: I don’t own either Buffy or Numb3rs. I just like to play in their sandboxes.


“I’m not giving birth in an elevator,” Willow announced.

“I’m really, really hoping you don’t, too,” replied Colby, casting a suspicious eye at her bulging stomach.

Willow decided not to be offended. Under different circumstances she would probably share his wary attitude, but right now she was sitting on the dirty floor of a stalled elevator that was apparently looked after by a questionable cleaning crew; either that, or FBI agents were really gross on a daily basis.

So far they’d been confined in the elevator together for nearly two hours, and both their nerves were starting to fray under the constant stress. The increasingly frequent pains Willow was trying to ignore were only adding to it all. A slight tremor had locked down the elevators in the Federal building, just as Willow and Colby were on their way up.

“It was barely a 2!” griped Willow, still put out that the mild tremor had caused so much trouble.

“The ground moved,” said Colby. “I don’t care how ‘mild’ it was. It’s just wrong.”

“You big baby,” Willow taunted. “You’ve lived here almost as long as I have. Well, that I can remember. You should be used to it.”

“Yeah, I don’t think I’ll ever be,” he replied. “It’s not natural. The ground should be firm, flat and unmovable.”

“It’s perfectly natural,” Willow retorted, anything to take her mind off the mild pains she totally wasn’t having. In an elevator. “An earthquake is a force of nature, the movement of the tectonic plates that has always and will always be going on, no matter how much you complain. Force of nature, thus: natural!”

Willow smiled a perfectly smug smile at the FBI agent, refraining from pointing her finger in the air as she made her argument winning point.

“I’m from Idaho,” he reminded her. “Where the ground doesn’t move. And we’re perfectly happy with that.”

“Well then you should have stayed in the mid-west and not-“ Willow bit back a gasp as the mild pain she totally wasn’t having, suddenly became a sharp pain. That she totally wasn’t having.


“-not moved over a fault line,” she finished, blowing out a breath. She chose to ignore the way Colby looked at his watch – again – because she totally wasn’t having any pains.

She refused to name them contractions, so Colby could just stop timing her right now.

“I’m not giving birth in an elevator,” Willow reiterated, feeling that it was important to get that across to Colby.

“You might not have a choice,” said Colby, wincing as he looked at her.

“No! Having a baby while being stuck in an elevator is the height of bad clichés and I won’t do it.”

“Ok,” he conceded, his tone conveying the exact opposite.

“My water hasn’t even broken,” she tried to argue. “They’re just Braxton-Hicks, brought on by stress.”

“You know what else stress brings on? Labour.”

“I’m not in labour!” said Willow more forcefully than she intended to.

Colby still didn’t look convinced.

“I’m not in labour, because if I was in labour, then at some point soon you’d be seeing parts of me that I’d really you rather didn’t,” argued Willow. “When the time comes – and this isn’t it – I’m going to have my baby in a nice, clean hospital with lots of nurses, doctors and drugs; not in a tiny elevator in the Federal building, with someone who only knows basic first aid.”

“I have a little more than the basic first aid they teach at the Academy,” Colby shot back.

“Patching up a gun shot or pulling a piece of shrapnel from somebody’s liver is not the same as helping someone have a baby!” Willow shouted back. She felt bad about being so mean to Colby – he’d been a sweetie the entire time they’d been stuck in the elevator – but Willow was scared and Colby was convenient.

“Besides,” she told him, “I’m wearing pants – or the equivalent that I can fit into – and I really don’t feel like stripping in front of you.” It was hard enough letting Don see her when she felt so big and ungainly, and drew the line at random co-workers and friends, no matter how much like family they were.

Willow bit her lip and clenched her hands as another sharp pain shot through her abdomen. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Colby check his watch again before grimacing.

“Let’s see if anyone’s there yet,” he said, leaning forward to grab the emergency phone off the hook. Cell phones worked for shit in an elevator on a normal basis, but an earthquake, no matter how small, always crashed the cell system as millions of people tried to call family and friends.

“Yes. Let’s,” Willow agreed, really hoping someone would answer this time.


Five hours later, Molly Susanna Eppes was born in a hospital full of nurses, doctors and drugs.

Much to the relief of her godfather, Colby.


The End

You have reached the end of "This is How it Goes". This story is complete.

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