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"Mother Night, that hurts," Surreal gritted out between clenched teeth. Women did not do this every day. It was impossible to think that anyone went through this much pain for something that was supposed to be a joyous event.

Of course, said joyous event was weeks early, which had to mean it wasn't even the actual pain she would have later. She squeezed her eyes shut, fingernails biting into her palm until she drew blood, trying to deflect the pain from her abdomen and the tightening there. She had held off her moontime before, and knew how horrid it would be the month she let it come, and somehow she had expected it to be like that, not this.

She had fought. She had been beaten. She had been raped. And, possibly, if she really cast her memory back to the latter she would admit that pain was far worse than this, but that wasn't somewhere she liked for her memory to go, and so right now she clung tightly to the thought that this was possibly the worst pain she had ever felt. Making it worse was that laced over the pain was fear, cold and clutching at her in a way nothing had since possibly that night at Briarwood.

It was too soon. She didn't know nearly enough about babies and how they were supposed to come, but Morghann had said not until the beginning of March, at least, possibly the middle of the month, and it was not anywhere near that yet.

Another contraction clutched at her, and she felt tears seep out from under her squeezed tight eyelids.

Scared, and hoping he could somehow stop this betrayal of her body of her and the baby it carried, she sent for Samael, and then she did something else she never thought she would do.

She prayed.

Date: 2007-01-24 03:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Sam popped in with a loud bang and something less than his usual magical grace. It sounded urgent.

"What's wrong?"

Date: 2007-01-24 03:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
She looked up at him with very frightened eyes.

"I think something's wrong..."

Date: 2007-01-24 04:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"What ..." And he could almost see the contraction, could see it if he looked at her energies as well.


Date: 2007-01-24 04:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
She bit her lip, eyes closing as she tried not to cry out.

"It's too early."

Date: 2007-01-25 02:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Sam blinked. "Oh."


He took a breath. Started to go over to her, stopped, turned and grabbed her robe and went back to throw it around her shoulders. Blinked a couple of times.

"Should I... I should go fetch Morghann. Find her. She'd be at her house, yes?"

It was possible he was very scattered now.

Date: 2007-01-27 04:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal nodded shortly. "Probably. Unless she's visiting the Hall. Or Khary's people. Or...I don't know." She was trying to remember what Morghann had said about breathing, but she'd expected to have a refresher course before they got to this point.

"Can't you make it stop?"

Date: 2007-01-27 04:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"I could..." He was almost visibly jittering. "I don't know what that would do."

All kinds of horrible, bloody images were playing through his head. None of them worth repeating. He was at least together enough to know that.

Date: 2007-01-27 04:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Then get her. Please..." The pain hit again, and she actually whimpered.

Date: 2007-01-27 04:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"All right..." he started towards the door. Stopped. Realized that it was rather silly to head towards the door at the same time as he realized...

"... I don't want to leave you alone..."


Stuck his head out the door. "JULIANNA...!!"

Date: 2007-01-27 05:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Not being alone would probably be good, she thought, curling up tighter on the sofa. Fear was making her snappish, though, and she tried to bite that back.

Date: 2007-01-27 05:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Tiny footsteps sounded a moment later. "Sam? What are you bellowing ab-- ohhhh."

"Can you... I mean, I have to go... Morghann..."

"I'll watch her." Julianna took him by the shoulders and shoved him in some direction that seemed to be more away than anything else. "Go. Shoo. Not the door!"

As Sam seemed to have forgotten he could teleport again. He gave both women a sheepish look before poofing out.

Date: 2007-01-27 05:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal was torn when he left, glad he was gone with his panicked energy feeding hers, and at the same time wanting him back, here, telling her everything was going to be fine and their baby was going to be fine and this happened all the time.

"I don't need watching," she half-snapped, half-fretted at Julianna.

Date: 2007-01-28 03:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Of course you don't," Julianna replied, calmly but in that dry tone of a woman addressing someone who is speaking less than full sense. "Let's see. No, let's get you into bed." She held out her hands.

"And then I'll fetch some water and towels, because this is going to be a very messy process."

As the other woman may or may not have guessed. Likely had guessed, but would not appreciate until it happened to her.

Date: 2007-01-28 03:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Morghann's going to stop it," Surreal said stubbornly, though she took Julianna's hands and struggled to her feet. "It's far too early. She can't be born, yet. It's too soon..."

Date: 2007-01-28 03:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Not that soon," Julianna's hands were strong, sliding to her forearms for better support as she stood, one arm sliding around her shoulders when she was on her feet.

"Early, yes, but plenty of children have been born earlier and lived full and healthy lives with no ill effects."

Date: 2007-01-28 04:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Truly?" Surreal looked at her, the fear clear in her eyes, something she struggled never to show.

Date: 2007-01-28 04:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Truly." The calm certainty of knowing it to be fact in her voice.

And about that time Sam popped in, still with less grace than usual, with a slightly wild-haired Morghann who looked...

...actually rather as though she had come from the stables, with her clothes all teleported off and roughly back onto her in approximately the same positions as they had lain originally.

Date: 2007-01-28 04:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal blinked, startled, and stared a little at her, mind sliding through just what they might have interrupted, and glanced at Sam, then back at Morghann and started to say something when another contraction hit.

Date: 2007-01-28 04:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Morghann looked somewhat disgruntled, and actually pushed Sam out of the way as she went to help Julianna get Surreal into bed.

"He thought it would be faster if he magicked all the dirt and straw off of me rather than wait for me to change clothes," she explained.

Date: 2007-01-28 04:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Sorry," Surreal murmured with a sort of glare in his direction, as she sank back onto the bed.

Date: 2007-01-29 02:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Males." Morghann rolled her eyes as she fetched several towels, spreading some over the bed, draping some over the corner fo the end table on which the water basin had been set, with an approving glance at Julianna.

"Their lovers or wives go into labor and their brains turn to mush. How far apart are the contractions? How much pain is there?" Pillows to prop her up, and she reached into the pouch at her side.

Date: 2007-01-29 02:29 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"There's a lot of pain." Which coming from Surreal probably said a lot more than anything else. "And....I don't know. I didn't know to time them..."

Date: 2007-01-29 02:34 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Well, minutes or half an hour?" She rooted around in the bag for a moment. "Or an hour? From the look of you I would guess, minutes."

There. She had a handful of some rather nasty smelling root. "Ordinarily I'd brew it and lace it with wine but I'm afraid you'll have to settle for chewing. It should ease the pain somewhat."

Date: 2007-01-29 02:37 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Minutes," Surreal agreed with a short nod, looking at the root with something akin to desperation.

Date: 2007-01-29 02:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Then the good news is, it's almost over." She handed the root to Surreal, with Julianna following it up with a cup of water.

"Let's see how far along you are."

Sam actually twitched and had to keep from turning away when Morghann started to take down Surreal's clothes, to see.

"Oh, don't be such a baby," Juli told him.

Date: 2007-01-29 02:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal took the root, wincing at the taste, but she'd do anything to make it stop hurting so badly. She glared at Sam.

"Don't you dare flinch..."

Date: 2007-02-01 06:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"I wasn't!" Cringing away from what had suddenly become an ooky sight was not flinching. Really.

He did manage to make his legs unfreeze, going over and half sitting next to her on the bed. Really, leaning against the bed, one knee and leg up on it and taking her closest hand in both of his.

Date: 2007-02-01 06:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Men were such babies. She half-snarled and would have pulled her hand away, but another contraction hit and she decided to squeeze hard instead, crying out.

Date: 2007-02-01 06:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"You're halfway there," Morghann said, meaning to be encouraging but knowing ruefully that it probably wasn't. "She's in quite a hurry."

Julianna handed a wet cloth to Sam, or rather, placed it in his hand and curled his fingers around it. "While you're there, you might as well make yourself useful. For her forehead," she explained, when he gave her a blank look. "And other parts that are sweaty and need cleaning. The cool will be at least a little soothing."

Date: 2007-02-01 06:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Too much of a hurry," Surreal said, fretful. "It's too early....she can't be born yet. You have to make it stop..."

Date: 2007-02-01 06:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"There's no stopping her now, I'm afraid," Morghann murmured, touching her lightly over, underneath her belly, looking through her with her Jewels. "Much like her mother."

Date: 2007-02-01 06:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"But it's too early....." Surreal looked distressed, shifiting against Sam. "She's not ready..."

Date: 2007-02-01 08:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"You can tell her that when she arrives," Morghann commented dryly, letting her jewels fall back on their chain. "It'll be all right, Surreal. Plenty of women go through this, bearing their children a little early, without harm to either mother or child."

Date: 2007-02-01 08:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"You're sure? Can you tell if she's all right?" She held Sam's hand tighter, clinging to him.

Date: 2007-02-01 09:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"I can, and I have. And she's all right."

Sam freed one hand to slide his arm around her shoulders, pausing at a headshake from Morghann.

"Don't..." she told him, moving to physically straighten them both up. "Posture is important. I know it's hard, but ...Well."

Sam fidgeted. But he did try, at least, to keep them both in an upright and settled posture that didn't put undue pressure on her spine to bend in one way or the other.

Julianna was preparing a bassinet for the baby, laying down clothes that could be easily removed and cleaned, making sure everything was quite clean and ready.

Date: 2007-02-01 09:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal whimpered as another contraction hit, nails digging into Sam's skin. They were harder now, closer together. There was relief that the baby was all right, but still terror, and now, mother night but it hurt.

"Why would anyone do this more than once?" she ground out.

Date: 2007-02-01 10:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Almost there," Morghann said, smiled. Didn't answer, either. In her experience women tended to forget exactly how bad it was, between births. And of course it was always different.

Date: 2007-02-01 10:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal tried to breathe through the pain, fingers biting into Sam even deeper.

"Can I push?"

Date: 2007-02-01 11:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Morghann leaned over to check again. "Not yet, but soon." Small, encouraging smile. "Very soon."

Sam was thinking that it was a damn good thing he wasn't human, nor subject to human injury.

Date: 2007-02-01 11:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal growled, trying very hard not to push, to remember how to breathe properly.

"I don't think this is going to work," she said, slightly panicking. "There's no way this is going to work."

Date: 2007-02-01 11:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"You're doing fine, Surreal..." Morghann told her. "You're almost there." Her Jewels were out again, though she didn't seem to be worried.

Date: 2007-02-02 12:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal just whimpered, turning her head to bury it in Sam's chest.

Date: 2007-02-02 02:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Minute by excruciating minute. It took a little while longer for Morghann to say it, but finally.

"Now! Now you can push..."

Date: 2007-02-02 02:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal pushed with everything she had in her, not caring if she nearly broke Sam's fingers in the process. She was fairly certain nothing as big as a child was going to come out of her, but she was going to try.

Date: 2007-02-02 03:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
She nearly did, too. Thank god, again, he wasn't human.

Morghann made all the usual encouraging noises, knowing that 'its over' was probably what Surreal really wanted to hear right now. Also knowing that it would be several more very long moments before it was over.

And then, suddenly, in a rush of fluid and sticky, it was.

Date: 2007-02-02 03:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Surreal cried out softly, collapsing back on the pillows in relief.

Date: 2007-02-02 03:40 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Samael..." Morghann smiled. She loved this part. Julianna assisted with the cord and the blanket. They sponged the child's mouth and nose clear, much to the girl's loud objections. "Surreal."

"Meet your daughter."

Date: 2007-02-02 03:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The cries were a relief, a great relief. She sounded healthy, strong. Surreal smiled weakly, head a little spinning as she looked at her.


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