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Titled? ~66

October 03, 2017 08:14PM

Chapter Sixty -Six

Anna Margaret did not really notice what Frederick had gone to do. He had moved about, laying out towels, talking on his phone and she did not know what else. But he was there when she felt it happen and she yelled.

She sat feeling bemused with a tiny baby against her chest when the midwife came in. It was good they had someone downstairs to let her in. Frederick had not done it, at any rate, because he had stayed with her. Now that she was no longer busy, her shoulders grew cold and she shivered.

“Wow,” said the midwife. Today it was Carine, with whom she had had at least two appointments recently. “He was in a hurry, was he? How do you feel?”

“Er…I have no idea.” She was glad it was over, but she was not sure she could get up or walk. Perhaps dazed described her most accurately.

“Mind if I check him?” Carine took a towel and wrapped the little thing in it. He let out a howl. “Did he cry when he came out?”

“Yes. I think?”

“Can I get Anna Margaret out?” Frederick asked.

“Just a minute.” Carine was examining the baby. It took a little while. “Perfect. Now, take him from me and dress him up. Keep him warm. I’ll have a look at Anna Margaret. Oh, don’t forget the nappy. Then bring some clothes for her.”

Frederick took longer dressing up his son than it took Carine to look at Anna Margaret and help her out of the bath. Anna Margaret was in a bathrobe when he reappeared. It was really all quite messy. She did not look down.

Carine ushered her to the bedroom and told her to sit or lie down when she was dressed. Frederick gave her the baby. Then he disappeared.

She looked at the time. It was nine o’clock. She had had no idea how much time had passed since she had come home.

Carine instructed her about some matters and did her paperwork. She also made a list because she was not sure the information would be remembered. “I’ve written things down for you. I’ve got someone else to check up on, but Iris will be coming to see you shortly.”

Frederick joined her when he had let Carine out. He kissed her. “What did just happen?”

She chuckled. “You were there.”

“I know, but I was so busy that I didn’t really stop to think about it.”

“Thanks,” she said gratefully. “I love you.”

“I did have someone on the phone telling me what to do.”

“I don’t care.”

“I hope he’s dressed right.”

“He’s not complaining.”

“Is he drinking?”

“Not sure. Practising maybe. I’ve been ordered to let him try. It’s not all that comfortable.” Suddenly she realised something. “I’ve not had dinner yet.”

“Neither have I. Shall I make something?”

“Call me when it’s done. I’ll come downstairs.”

He gave her a look.

“I can.”

Frederick realised something. “I could have filmed him swimming to the surface.”

Anna Margaret had been too busy to wonder about that, but she was glad. “I’m happy you didn’t take any half nude videos of me looking exhausted. And is this proud daddy kicking in already? I’m sure he didn’t swim. I know what. You cook some dinner and we’ll come downstairs and then you can take a picture. I’ll put on some better clothes.”

“I’ve got some of him when I dressed him, but not when he just came out.”


“I’ll carry him down. You might faint.”

“Whatever you want.”

“Should we inform people?” They had discussed what they would do, but they had not counted on ending up in a situation in which they could postpone telling people. Here at home it was so easy not to tell anyone just yet. It was very tempting.

She thought about it. “Not if they want to come over. I’d like some time alone to get used to the situation before people come over to see how I cope.” She did not want anyone telling her she was holding the baby incorrectly or whatever else they might comment on. She would rather be seen when she had managed it all.

“All right.” He went downstairs.

Anna Margaret switched the baby to her other breast. It was just as painful, but she was determined to get the hang of it – or rather, to let him get the hang of it. At some point when she did not feel anything anymore he turned out to have fallen asleep. It was amazing. She studied the small creature lying by her side. Sleeping, he did not look like anyone. It was a little daunting to be responsible for him now. She did not know what she would do if he started to cry, which he was certainly going to do at some point. At least nursing seemed to be one skill he was born with. That was good to know.

The first person to come back was not Frederick, but Iris. “I heard it went fast,” she said, setting down her bag. “I was with someone where it was taking far longer, but Carine is with them now, since the birth might happen on her shift.”

“I honestly don’t know how long it took.”

“You had an appointment only this morning.”

“Yes, no problem yet.”

Iris asked her a few more questions, examined the baby again and looked at the notes. Anna Margaret had the impression there was no real need for her to be there, since she did not do anything Carine had not done. Still, it was a little reassuring to find that nothing had gone wrong after Carine had left.

“One of us will be back in the next few days,” Iris announced as she closed her bag. “You have a private nurse, don’t you?”

“We haven’t actually informed anyone yet.”

“I think you’ll be all right during the night, but if you’re worried you can always call us. Call your nurse first thing in the morning, all right?”

“Yes,” Anna Margaret said obediently. It was Saturday, so that might make it easier for someone to come by.

Anna Margaret dressed in nice pyjamas, the ones she had picked out for a trip to the hospital. Since the baby was asleep, she laid him in his cot and covered him up. Hopefully he would stay asleep while she ate.

Downstairs, Frederick sat her down at the table. “I wonder if anyone is going to notice your belly is gone.”

“It’s not,” she had to point out, although some of it was.

He fiddled with his phone. “I’ll let you check the photo before I post it.”

“Thanks. What will you say?”

“Bedtime snack, or something.”

“I’m not sure what the news value of that is.”

“I’m not sure anything I post ever has any news value, so people won’t notice the difference.”

Despite knowing that he had an account that he used regularly, she still never personally went to Twitter. “I couldn’t tell you.” She quickly ate the omelette he had cooked up. Although she was hungry, she was eager to get some sleep as well. There was no telling what the night might bring.

In the morning Frederick felt tolerably rested. It helped that he had expected a bad night. He had let Anna Margaret sleep a bit longer, since she had been up during the night and he had not. By the time she came downstairs he had prepared a luxurious breakfast.

“Wow,” she said. “Is that just for the two of us or have you invited company?”

“I phoned Isabelle, if you don’t mind.”

She did not. “She’s not coming?”

“Not yet.”

Isabelle had a point. Visitors to this house were bound to get noticed. Even if they did not advertise the birth to anyone outside the family, people would realise what was going on if there was a continuous stream of family members suddenly visiting. They should not let people come here until they were ready for the media camping out in the street. Hopefully the media would not, but it was a possibility they should reckon with, considering how things had gone in other countries. “And Murielle?”

“She said she’d tell Murielle.”

“Any news on Twitter?” she asked.

“About your belly? Yes, someone remarked that you look far less fat from that angle.”

“Hmm. I hope it’s from every angle.” She glanced down, but she doubted it. Everything still had to shrink, unfortunately.

Frederick seemed hesitant. “She sounded a bit busy, you know.”

“Busy like I was?”

“Don’t know. Murielle might be able to tell us when she gets here.”

It was not Murielle who arrived, however, but her friend Nathalie. She congratulated them warmly and examined the latest arrival. She weighed him, took his temperature and asked about his feeds. All was well. “Are you okay as well?” she asked Anna Margaret.

“Yes, I’m fine. He wasn’t awake all night. I suppose it could have been worse.”

“Great. Take some rest. Murielle or I will be back tomorrow. We’ll send a message to see when. But if you need to ask anything sooner, you have the number.”

“Is Isabelle busy?”

“Oh, Murielle’s mother…” Nathalie was clearly not all that comfortable with her first name. “Yes. You know.”

“Did she go to the Lamotte Clinic?” Anna Margaret looked excited. That would mean their nephew was also arriving this weekend, maybe even today.

“She was supposed to…”

Anna Margaret’s eyes widened. “But she didn’t. Does that mean nothing was happening?”

“She ordered the doctor to come over. But they did not send the one she phoned. I mean, the one she phoned, phoned another one and that one came with a complete delegation, even though he hadn’t delivered a baby in like a decade, so Murielle’s mother sent him away.” Nathalie looked impressed.

“Was that a clever thing to do?” Anna Margaret could not decide. She was impressed as well, but she did not know in which way.

“It was certainly satisfying. But there are people there. Probably too many already, so I could go and see you.”

“But she’s forty-seven.”

“I don’t think it’s wise to mention that. She would throw something at you.”

“But things could go wrong.”

“She said it would not.” She shrugged. “What could anybody do? She’s the queen. And Murielle’s father was just sitting there, so we assumed it was all right.”

Titled? ~66

LiseOctober 03, 2017 08:14PM

Re: Titled? ~66

Sarah WaldockOctober 05, 2017 09:07PM

Re: Titled? ~66

AlidaOctober 04, 2017 08:23PM


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