December 12, 2015

In Which Dea Compares the Roles

September 4, 1196

"My God, laddie, you're getting heavier by the day!" Henry hoisted a giggling Sparron off the ground with mock-difficulty and bounced him about. "I don't think we ought to have let you have that pastry after all."

Dea pulled herself off the blanket with a shake of her head. It was little Sparron's first picnic. It would have been borderline criminal to deny him of a pastry. "I think half of it is his hair. Perhaps we ought to trim it."

"Never! He has long, luscious locks, just like his father--and we're going to keep them that way."

"For now, maybe--but that will be up to him when he's older." Dea indulged Henry with a wink, then reached forth and tickled Sparron under the neck. His hair flopped about with splendor amidst the squirms and laughs. "I refuse to be the sort of mother who insists on dictating her children's hairstyles."

It was a large part of being a queen, she'd learned--knowing what had to be legislated and what ought to be left to the people. Being a mother was much more difficult, but there was no lack of overlap between the two roles' basic principles.

"Fair enough--but all hair-cutting proposals must be approved by the father." Henry pulled Sparron to his shoulder and kissed the boy's forehead before flashing Dea a smile. She'd yet to figure out just how he managed to keep his teeth so white. "That's how it works, after all. The queen rules the land while the prince consort squawks at castle servants and redecorates rooms a thousand times and frets over little princelings' looks."

"You haven't redecorated a room since you got here."

"Ah, lass--I never said I was a good prince consort."

"You're good enough where it counts." Only because she was sure Sparron couldn't see at that angle, Dea sidled up to her husband and placed a hand to his backside. Maybe it was the early fall, maybe it was the kingdom's current prosperity, maybe it was that Sparron wouldn't fairly have claim to the title of 'baby' much longer, but she'd been feeling rather... restless of late.

A devilish gleam in Henry's eye proved the urge mutual. "The most important consort duty of all."

"I believe this little princeling will be needing a nap when we get home." With perfect accidental timing, Sparron yawned. "And I don't have any pressing royal duties to tend to today."

"Well--then it seems that I do." Henry leaned in, handing her their son as a pretext, but nipping her ear as they drew close enough. "Perhaps we ought to make a wee princess."

"Or another prince; I have no objections to either." Odd to think that already, she had no objections to the idea at all. Sparron was still young yet, after all.

But being a mother and being a queen were not so unlike. Perhaps added effort in one role would also pay off in the other.

"What do you think, Sparron? Is the Crown Prince of Naroni ready to be a big brother?"



Van said...

Eh. Today is one of those days I have nothing to say.

Winter said...

This chapter has really lovely pictures. The autumn colors add a real warmth to the scene and to the people in it. It's not hard at all to see why Henry and Dea would be inspired to work toward a sibling for Sparron. And they really have developed into a great couple, especially considering how their marriage came to pass.

Van said...

Thanks! Seasons does make for a pretty fall.

Heheh... Dea and Henry have worked out far better than either Dea or Henry expected. Having kid after kid won't be their first priority, but I suspect Sparron will eventually have more than just the one little sibling.