November 1, 2015

In Which Sev Gives a Reminder

August 18, 1195

Rennie cracked her knuckles as Sev took a seat on the other bench. Ordinarily, he'd sit beside her, but she didn't want that. She hadn't even wanted his hand on her shoulder as they'd left her mother's house. Rennie was affectionate in her own way, but touch was best reserved for when she wasn't feeling vulnerable--or, when she wasn't worried about someone else's vulnerability.

Not that Aunt Lettie, from what Sev could tell, seemed particularly vulnerable. Yes--she was visibly pregnant despite having been divorced for several years now, with no obvious candidate for the role of father. But, she kept going about her life as usual, protruding stomach no more a hindrance than a misplaced notch in her belt, a stinging retort for anyone who dared mention it and a guarantee that no one would mention it twice.

But Rennie was Aunt Lettie's daughter. An insult to the self wasn't the same thing as an insult to one's mother.

"I, uh... I thought your father was going to claim it. I mean, a lot of people don't acknowledge divorce, right?"

Rennie sniffed, shaking her head. "No one who knows either of them would believe it. Besides, there's Melria to consider now."

As always, she rolled her eyes as she spoke her stepmother's name. Melria too was expecting, due in the middle of November--a month and a half after Aunt Lettie's baby at the end of September or beginning of October. There was a point in life, Sev knew for a fact, where the thought of parents having more babies became more alarming than exciting. The thought of two at once? Especially with one conceived under less-than-ideal circumstances?

"I don't think Melria would mind. She didn't marry your father for love."

"Neither did my mother. No one would believe that they rekindled their passion for the night; any passion they ever had is well beyond rekindling." She kicked off the heel of one slipper and flung the shoe from her foot. It fell about at two-thirds of the distance to the fireplace. "I shouldn't have spent so many nights at the dormitory over the holidays. I might have at least seen who it was."

"Would you want to know, though? I mean, your mother obviously isn't interested in telling anyone." Not that she didn't know that. But, the odd reminder couldn't hurt. "Maybe when she says it doesn't matter, it really doesn't. If she wanted whoever it was in her life, she would have done something about it by now. I know most of us aren't going to get it, but I think she prefers it this way, or has at least come to terms with it."

"Maybe." But, even as Rennie looked Sev's way, the other shoe followed the first one's journey across the floor. The toe might have even reached a little further. "Doesn't make many any less angry with him, though--whoever he is. It takes two to make a baby. The least he could do is own up to his part in it."


1 comment:

Van said...

Hope everyone enjoyed their Halloween!

Sorry about the lack of focus in this one. All I've done is type today, since I had some college stuff to work on... which wouldn't usually be a problem, but my left arm is kind of swollen following a tetanus shot. I'm not too worried about it, since it seems like a normal reaction, but it's kind of... I don't know, stiff and immobile?