Archive for September, 2013

The change of fortune occurred precisely on the twenty first of May. I had missed the moon’s blood by nearly a fortnight, though I had thought nothing of it at the time. Such changes in cycle were common at my lengthening age, though I could not ignore the incessant nausea. I have never been ill as such in the entirety of my life, so that in itself was enough to raise a brow.

It was evening when I met with Lady Dawnstrike, and she, having been through the experience herself recently, was all too aware of my curious condition. The lady suggested that perhaps I was carrying a child, though she could not have known exactly how unlikely that would be. I rather kept my struggle with fertility a secret – a piece of knowledge shared only between my lovers and I. Though, I imagine it is not particularly difficult to arrive at such a conclusion, when a lady in such a position as myself in the Court did not produce an heir. Then again, most of the individuals in the Court are rather wanting for intelligence.

I nearly laughed off Lady Dawnstrike’s suggestion then, as I was wont to do to avoid exposing the terrible little flame of hope that her words might ring true. Too long had I struggled in this battle, and failed over and over again, each time breaking off pieces of the heart many do not think I have. It is my born purpose to continue my line, and when I continually failed to do so… well, I had little alternative but to fulfill my duty in the only other way – conscription in the military. Such was a turn of fate that I would never have expected from myself, a hundred years’ previous.

The first thought that crossed my mind upon rationalizing Lady Dawnstrike’s claim was this: How different would my life have been, if this had occurred two hundred years ago, when it was supposed to? Might I still be married to Hadrian? Would he have chosen to inflict the same pain upon me, if I had been able to produce an heir for him? I would not be the same woman that I am on this day; I have no doubts of that.

Truly, I struggled to hold myself together in that moment – it took all of my centuries of practice to remain composed in the Lady Dawnstrike’s presence.

The second, more grueling thought that arose is the fact that there is uncertainty regarding the child’s patronage. Though I had consistently been with the Lord Netherstar for months at the time of conception, my attention had a brief diversion to my terrible vice – the Captain – after which, I had become with child. The cause for the uncertainty is the fact that conception occurred shortly after this single evening, as opposed to any time in the span of my physical relationship with the bloodmage. I was admittedly concerned after the embarrassment both men would suffer, upon discovering the child was not his own.

More important than that, however, was my own turmoil at such a prospect. Despite the power behind my name, a child born out of wedlock would face staggering difficulties within the realm of Thalassian Aristocracy. Neither of the potential fathers are in definitively favorable positions in the Court – considering the dubious allegiances of Izulde and Vaelrin’s former status as an outlaw. Both do have noble blood to their name – Netherstar and Firestorm, though I am quite aware of the notion that the Captain will never return to the life of the Court as it were., and I have a duty to my house.

Most objective individuals would insist that I formally name the child as Netherstar, but they do not know the same facts about the bloodmage as I. Izulde, I am afraid, is of the same brand as myself. To some that may be a blessing – they may even seek such a thing in life, but for a woman such as I, it is only troubling. Such a thought was evident to me in the treacherous arrangements we partnered upon in the past year.

Termination of the pregnancy was simply not an option, so I, in my cowardice, retreated to my lands and hid for four months from the problems that faced me at Court.

Aside from the paternal figures, only Drissa, my unexpected midwife has been permitted audience with me. The Captain’s fondness for her is obvious, and perhaps gave cause for the impulse that directed hiring the creature. However timid, she has proven to be quite resourceful in assisting me with the struggles that accompany pregnancy. It is well that she fears me.

The Highlord as well is aware of my condition, and perhaps notified the Archon himself already, but the Dreadnaught deserves proper announcement from me, rather than hearing of my state by word of mouth… particularly given the relationship between himself and Izulde. I am far along enough now, however, that the curve of the child is obvious, and I cannot disguise it any longer.

I will have to step forth.

The slow burning dissent regarding the Warchief has granted me time to sit idly in my realm, but I do not doubt the ‘Guard will call upon me soon. I know I will be required to give what assistance I can, if I cannot participate in combat. I may yet assist the Dawnmenders, in the same way that I protected the minds of Telchis and Raserus from the suffering their bodies endured.

It is not well for my little heir to be present in a warzone, but that I cannot change in a world such as this. I can only hope that he or she will be born with a resilience in their heart to endure the barrages this world will throw.


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