“Keep it up, Miss Ancarin…the child is almost out…” Cheered a roughly 15 years old Dark Elf, dressed in a black maid’s outfit that seemed that much more striking because of her almost sickly pale complexion and burning red eyes.
Laying on the bed, Ancarin continued wailing amidst a shower of sweat that made it seem like she was in a sauna of some sort, assuming saunas caused your face to contort horribly in pain.
“Ahh…” Other than pain, there was nothing that could be heard from her cries. Being a doctor herself, Ancarin knew better than anyone else how painful this ordeal would be for women.
To be honest, the pain wasn’t the main issue here. Rather it was the question that Ancarin was about to ask: “Jez…sere…is it the head…first…”
“It’s the legs…” Jezsere gasped in fright after giving the opening a peek. “Hurry, Big Sis, keep pushing…or the baby will suffocate to death…”
Normally during childbirth, a baby being born legs first wasn’t an easy thing to deal with because the baby had a chance of dying before it could even leave the mother’s body. If something like this had happened on Earth, the hospital would most likely perform a caesarean in order to ensure the safety of the child or mother.
As a world focused heavily on magic, the Western Human Realms naturally possessed medical techniques that were far superior to that of 21st Century Earth. There were methods to handle such complications as well but the requirements were noticeably more stringent.
For example, in order to retrieve the baby from the womb, Light or Water magic would be applied on the wound. However, because the Western Human Realms was a feudal society, such healers would only appear in the larger towns. A village like this would almost never have a healer. Even if there was one in Plateau Village, it still might not be possible to treat her wounds because she was a Demoness…a Demoness who worshipped Mo Ke…
As a Demoness, Ancarin’s resistance to Light magic was basically in the negatives. Even healing magic when used on her would harm her. Thus, it was only possible to heal her wounds using Water magic. Yet should her Demoness background be ever uncovered…she would probably be burnt on the stake before even being able to give birth.
In short, finding a healer wasn’t an option at all.
In actuality, healers didn’t only have to come from the Water or Light branch of magicks. Occultists were able to heal as well though their methods were more extreme. Instead of calling them healing spells, it would be more accurate to say that their spells exchanged life for life. By sacrificing another life form, they were able to heal wounds using the resulting life force. Compared to their Light and Water counterparts, such spells required a lot less mana to cast. Still, they were basically evil arts at that point…at least it was so for the majority of the world.
There was, in fact, another method of healing wounds, and that was using potions. However, giving birth was already a difficult situation let alone when performed in such a backward setting. Adding on the fact that such potions were extremely rare and Ancarin so happened to have none at the moment, this method really wasn’t viable at all.
As for normal medical methods such as stitching up the wound…Plateau did actually possess such a doctor…but he was killed in the bandit raid…
At the end of the day, the only option left was Jezsere, their resident Occultist. The problem was that her personality was rather…timid. Who knew if she would end up making some kind of mistake out of fright…
Long story short, it was a dire situation for Ancarin.
Despite all that however, Ancarin’s mind was focused on another matter right now. Bearing with the pain, she asked another question: “Is it a boy…or…a girl?”
“…” Jezsere was stunned into silence by that sudden question. She simply couldn’t understand why would Ancarin harp on such details at a time like this. Although Ancarin had explicitly stated that she wanted a girl before, Jezsere still didn’t realize the implications of what those words meant. It wasn’t like she was going to toss away the child if it was a boy, right?
“…boy…or girl…” Seeing Jezsere in a daze like that, she managed to force out those words through a pained grunt. “Sere…tell me…quick…”
“It’s a girl, Sister Ancarin…”
“A girl huh…AHHH…”
Surprisingly, the moment that bit of news came out, so did the baby. All that talk about suffocation instantly became a moot point…
“Master…it’s a girl…” As she laid on the bed, Ancarin affectionately leaned towards the baby who had just been wrapped up in a towel, and smiled.
Even now, Jezsere couldn’t understand the strange reaction Ancarin had just showed her. Even though Dark Elf Society was a matriarchal one, it wasn’t like they tossed away their male babies either. Furthermore, even if males had a lower status than females, it was still a fact that they were lacking males so they definitely wouldn’t do that.
At the same time as Ancarin’s childbirth, Elona lost her life. She was in the midst of childbirth as well, and just like Ancarin, her child came out leg first. Unlike Ancarin however, she didn’t survive the entire process. Moranthal was naturally nearby to witness the process and take care of her.
Still, while he might have done so, it wasn’t because he bore any sort of feelings for his former wife who had callously abandoned him. It was merely because they happened to share a bond before so he decided to watch over her pregnancy, making sure to stop by often to check on her condition.
In truth, his attitude towards her was probably the best she could have hoped to receive here. The other villagers bore no good will whatsoever towards her, given that she was the only one who willing went over to the bandit stronghold to be a wife. Furthermore, the man she chose was the head of those bandits…the worst part would be that she even bore that man, Dawson’s, child…
Thus, when Dawson’s death was confirmed, a number of villagers, of whom all had lost family members to the bandits, rejected her and didn’t want her to return to the village at all. Thankfully, Moranthal took pity on this former wife of his and pleaded with the villagers to let her stay and even stated that he would look after her. However, all that was merely because she pregnant and that they used to share a bond.
Moranthal had no intention at all of reuniting with Elona, not even if Elona wanted so. Besides, Elona probably was too ashamed to make that request as well.
Ever since that harrowing battle with the bandits, Moranthal had never once had a peaceful day. His dashing features belied the turmoil he had to endure in his heart.
Elona herself wasn’t any better off either. Her days were fraught with emotional distress, caused in part by the villagers who would often proactively curse her for what they had suffered at the hands of the bandit. Even though none of them actually used force on her, the emotional pressure they applied wasn’t something a person could take.
Adding on the fact that Moranthal no longer loved her and that there was basically no hope of a reunion since he had inexplicably fell in love with Mo Ke, her remaining days were basically a living hell. Had it not been for the baby in her belly, she might have just killed herself.
Going back to the pregnancy, Moranthal naturally wasn’t one to stand idly by and leave Elona to die like that, even if he had basically decided to sever all ties with her. He did his utmost to try and save her but alas, it failed. The only silver lining was that the child survived.
Matters of childbirth wasn’t something a man like him could handle so naturally the entire process had to be done by another female. However, because of her sensitive status as the wife of a bandit chief, Moranthal had no choice but to request aid from one of the women in the Demoness Abode who so happened to have experience with childbirth. In the meantime, all he could do was wait outside, heart still embroiled in a maelstrom of emotions.
Throughout the entire process, the pained wails of Elona did nothing to affect his state of mind at all. That was because he, more than anyone else, was painfully aware that the woman in there wasn’t his wife anymore, and the child she was birthing wasn’t his either. It was only out of pity that he decided to take her in.
Finally, after an indeterminate amount of time, right about the time when Moranthal became numb to her cries, an unfamiliar female voice could be heard gasping from behind the door.
“It’s out, the child has been born…ah…this…how’s this even possible…”
The woman’s surprised gasp caused Moranthal’s heart to seize up momentarily. Thankfully, he still had enough self-control left in him to not barge in right away. He merely asked from the outside: “What happened?”
“The child…has a tail…” Came the woman’s garbled words. A long while later, the woman finally confirmed that the child was all right: “It’s a girl…she has a wolf tail and her ears are that of a wolf’s too…”
There was nothing else that needed to be said at that point. It was entirely possible that the child born between the two of them would end up with a wolf’s tail seeing as how Dawson was a Werewolf. Normally, the child should have been a Werewolf as well but it was entirely possible for a Beastman to be born too…
“What about Elona?” Entering the room, the first thing he saw was a crying infant resting in the arms of a woman. It took all the energy he had to turn his eyes towards Elona who seemed to be sound asleep right now.
“She’s…” As the woman tenderly wrapped the newborn baby in cloth, she said thusly in an even tone: “Dead, she died the moment the baby was born.”
Clearly, this woman didn’t like Elona either.
“Dead huh…” His already complicated feelings became that much worse upon hearing that. He truly didn’t know what kind of expression he should have on now. Even though he had told himself countless times that this adulterous woman no longer had any relation to him…even though Elona was the one who set on this path of no return herself and even though it was him who constantly used the word ‘pity’ to justify taking her in…those were all nothing but lies to fool himself. How could he ever sever ties with someone whom he had loved so deeply in the past?
In a sense, Elona’s death like this was a form of release for both her and Moranthal. After all, once Dawson died, she truly had no one to count on. Had it not been for Moranthal, those villagers would have never let her off the hook like that. Even if she was pregnant, they still wouldn’t have let her off. To the villagers, the child in her belly was no better than a [email protected]…