December 25, 2013

In Which Alsina Is Not Alone

March 26, 1184

The usual timing suggested it had to be soon, and Alsina had been bracing herself for a week now. Her husband was going to be a father again. She would try to cope, even try to care about the baby. What else could she do? She could be as angry with Aldhein and Aydelle as the situation merited, but nobody asked to be born. Surely no one asked to be born a bastard to a married man and a fast woman! If there was another victim here, it was the baby.

She'd had months now. She'd thought she was as ready as she'd ever be. But she hadn't anticipated walking past Aydelle's house on her way out of the shire and meeting the screams along the way. "Aydelle?"

"Oh, Alsina!" Near the couch, Aydelle turned about, body tensed and face strained. She must have found that pacing about helped; Alsina had noticed the same in the early part of her last labor. "Thank God you're here!"

Aydelle and her were not so close that a mere social call brought such a response. "The baby's coming, isn't it?"

"It is." She reached behind her head and rubbed at her neck. The slight crouch that followed did little to minimize her full middle. "Don't look in the kitchen. Just... don't."

Alsina shuddered. Aldhein could clean that up when he arrived. His presence couldn't have been the first priority, though. "Do you want me to run and fetch Arydath?"

"No. Stay with me. It should be a few hours yet, but... just in case." So there was a chance, however remote, that she alone would be here to deliver her husband's bastard. Great. "The girls will be home from school in a few minutes. Leina can run for Aldhein, and Hanna can take the horse to fetch Arydath. And maybe she could get Princess Camaline too--she's a friend."

"All right. I'll tell them when they get here." And with any luck, it wouldn't be long. It seemed about the time Fenrick got home; surely Aydelle's girls wouldn't have taken any longer?

"Thank you--ooooh!"

Her teeth gritted, Aydelle clutched her stomach--the first contraction of Alsina's visit. It didn't sound like a big one. Good. She couldn't escape involvement in this, but at least she wouldn't have to do it alone. "Let's just get you comfortable, all right?"



Van said...

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate it! And happy holidays, etc. to the rest of you! :)

Ekho said...

Ooh, baby time! I'm grinning, babies are awesome. But Alsina is right, if anyone else is the victim here it is the baby, and I like that she's doing the fair thing and not holding it against the baby.
Merry Christmas to you Van! (Though it's the 26th here in aus haha) hope you enjoy the day and all that it brings :)

Van said...

This poor baby is probably going to have to put up with a ton of judgement from people who don't know how to mind their own business, and Alsina's gone through enough hardship in her lifetime to know that people kind of suck sometimes. Her feelings about this are pretty complicated, but she does get credit for setting her anger toward fairer targets.

Merry (late) Christmas! It's the 26th here now too; I made the silly mistake of deciding to re-watch Avatar: The Last Airbender, and the past few nights I've been all "Just one more episode... just one more episode... well, that one was the first half of a two-parter... oh shit, it's 3:30 AM". XD

Ekho said...

Haha you have good taste! Have you seen the new season? Legend of Korra? I was severely disappointed, though some of the characters are just lovely.

Van said...

Indeed, I have! I like the original series better, but I enjoyed Korra as well. I may or may not have squealed audibly when Uncle Iroh showed up. XD

Ekho said...

Me too! He should have been more in the story I think, all of the fire nation - or at least their decedents would have been a nice surprise.
Have to say, since watching the new series I miss Zuko heaps, I have always had a soft spot for bad boy princes who get redeemed *cough* Vegeta *cough* :P

Van said...

I'm hoping that Zuko turns up in the next season (some quick Googling suggests that Word of God says he's still alive). I'm curious about what happened to Azula and the others as well.

Ekho said...

It would be amazing to have some of the old gang back, I still get chills when Katara is on screen. I really hope Zuko is still alive!!! And I'd like to know what happened to Sokka as well.
WAAAAY happy you like Avatar AND sims haha finally someone who understands my madness :P

Van said...

Yeah, I am curious about what happened between the two series. I'm hoping everyone who died went peacefully.

Ann's also an A:TLA fan! You (and everyone else) should join us in Lothere's chat room some time.

Ekho said...

That would be cool! Only thing is time zone difference :S but I'll keep an eye out for yous!

Van said...

Yeah, it can be tricky coordinating timezones... but I've caught Verity in chat a couple times, and she's also in Australia. My tendency to be up at strange hours helps. XD

Penelope said...

lol Oh man, how absurd. Depending on how long the ride to Arydath's is, I would have never said yes to staying with that ho.

Van said...

Arydath isn't too far--she's near the Tetran/Armion border--but she's a busy woman and there's never any guarantee that she's actually going to be around (though she does seem to keep track of people's due dates well). From Alsina's perspective, if Arydath can't make it in time, someone ought to be there.