A Good Clutch

A Good Clutch

Who: Aerishani, O’rlen, Amorenth, Roreliuth
When: Month 6, 202 AT
Where: Weyrleader’s Weyr, Honshu Weyrhold
What: Not one, but two.

Whatever it is that the Weavers and the Healers have been telling Aerishani about what size her clothes ought to be and how far along she is in her pregnancy just cannot add up right, something that’s finally drawn her to stand before the full length mirror in her weyr and tug at the skirts of her dress to try and make them fall evenly or at least in a manner that better conceals what everyone is telling her is not so far into her second trimester. What were never sharp angles of her features have softened further, it’s true, but she doesn’t seem to have put on obvious, excess weight, and the frustration and confusion of the whole affair has her growling an unladylike curse under her breath. From the wallow she shares with Roreliuth, Amorenth observes her, whatever commentary she’s offered earning a, “You knew I was pregnant and didn’t tell me. If I have to go to the dolphins and you’ve known something all along…”

Roreliuth happens to be curled up in the wallow beside his mate, his attention centering on Aerishani as she delivers her verbal response to Amorenth. Some awareness trickles in from his rider – who was having a meeting with Honshu’s Weyrsecond. Roreliuth rumbles disgruntled, shifting beside Amorenth as he opens his mind to her if she were curious as to how that meeting is going. It is not going well. O’rlen arrives home an hour later, looking exhausted and aggravated, though he manages to gear shift once he’s thrown off his coat and loosened the buttons on his shirt. He heads towards the direction of Aerishani. “What’s this that Roreliuth keeps going on about? Something about the obviousness of more than one egg?” He rubs at his forehead and sighs, moving to flop on the nearest surface.

Whatever it is that Amorenth has decided to finally tell her, it’s plainly done little for Aerishani’s weariness and frustration, for by the time O’rlen returns home she’s been lying curled atop the covers of their bed and drifting in and out of consciousness. She’s just about awake when he flops down next to her, reaching out to run a lazy hand through his hair. “…They,” is uttered lowly with an accusatory glance in the direction of their dragons, “are saying that you flew me well enough for a proper clutch and not just one egg.” Her other hand drifts down to her stomach, where she once again tries to get fabric to sit right, only to give up and curve her palm to the evident bump. “Amorenth claims she can feel flickers of two distinct presences that aren’t mine,” she murmurs. “I’m apt to believe her. That there’re two of them, I mean. I’ve lost more weight because of the sickness than I’ve gained and I’m still… big.” For where she should be, anyway. “So… short of dolphin confirmation… I guess we’re having twins…”

O’rlen’s boots are kicked off as he settles down on the bed beside his dozing mate, his body scooting up so he can offer an arm as a pillow to Aerishani. He listens to her with a contented sigh, his own hand moving to rest on that prominent bump of her stomach. “Twins,” he murmurs, lifting up on an elbow and turning to place both of his palms reverently along her abdomen. He kisses against the peep of skin that her shirt is constantly exposing. “Twins,” he says again, looking up at her with a bright smile and a shimmer of wetness in his gaze. “We should make sure the healer’s know and you get taken care of properly.” He clearly does not need dolphins to believe their dragons. He eases back along her side and draws her hand up to his lips. “What a joy you are, Aerishani,” he tells her, kissing her palm and then her wrist. “What a strong, beautiful woman.” He pauses, then frowns for the first time, concern flooding his gaze as he looks to her. “I don’t want you to have to rush our wedding with the fear of exposing yourself and our future to all, unless you want it. We could postpone it until the baby..,” he chuckles, nipping at her finger playfully, “I mean the babes are born.” He draws a hand through her hair and cups her cheek. “You are the most darling woman. I didn’t think a man could love a woman as much as I love you.” He tips his face to hers and claims her lips in a deep kiss, preventing any commentary from her for some time as he battles a need for air and a need to taste her lips.

She’s not been able to resist since the beginning and now it’s habit and second nature that Aerishani should try to twine herself with the man she intends to marry, lifting a leg around O’rlen’s hips to press herself closer as he kisses her, her figure presently not so altered as to make it a particularly awkward thing. She’s got both hands in his hair by the time that breathing makes itself a requirement that can no longer be ignored, her forehead pressed to his as she murmurs, “We’re probably lucky that you can’t get me with any more babies right now,” through a soft huff of laughter. “Though I’m not sure that you will be calling me a joy or beautiful for much longer. I don’t know what it’s like to carry one baby, let alone two.” Easing back a little, she keeps her leg lazily hooked around him while pillowing her head on his arm. “I want us to be married before our babies are born, I think,” she quietly considers. “Not that I wouldn’t have wanted them if we weren’t married… but now we have the right to do as we might as Crafters…” She sneaks a quick look up at him. “Looking after two of them, I might never again look in a state to be seen in public,” she gently teases. More seriously, she declares, “I love you and I want to be your wife. Amorenth won’t let anything happen to me or them. She’s made that plain enough already, in her own way.”

O’rlen’s laughter is easy on his lips as he looks up at his future wife with an indulgent smile. He’s never done anything but encourage Aerishani’s thirst for the physical intimacy they so easily share. “Rather than take you right now, my love,” he teases her once she’s got her head pillowed on his arm once more. “Let’s spend the day finalizing our plans. We’ll need to send out invitations,” he’s avidly picked those out a number of weeks ago, surprisingly he’s the sort to be extremely excited by the prospect of wedding planning. “And you’ll need to get your dress altered,” he teases as he turns to kiss her forehead. “I can see C’aol’s anger rolling over now. You should make sure to send Lady Silverfield an invitation. I’m sure she’ll be pleased to return to Honshu under such circumstances.” He muses with his nose burrowed in her hair, inhaling the sweet smell of her. “What else is left?” As to her safety, he’s protectively curved an arm about her, his hand wandering to press against her bump. “Amorenth is fit to the task, I’m sure of it. And Roreliuth is ready to help us raise them, of course.”

Something of the mention of C’aol and Lady Silverfield makes Aerishani physically shudder, shiver running its way down her spine. “I don’t know how she can go to bed with that man,” she utters lowly. “And I truly hope that she doesn’t consider some insane idea to marry him and lend further legitimacy to her children. I would have thought that she would’ve married her bluerider by now.” Amorenth’s accompanying rumble of disapproval is a thing she doesn’t bother to try and smother. Her rider tucks her face in against O’rlen’s neck for a moment, not quite able to shake the guilt of letting the whole thing happen to the once-weyrling. “The longer we wait, the more often I’m going to have to have the dress altered,” she considers, curving a hand in at his ribs. “How about in two weeks? It’s short notice… but it isn’t as if people couldn’t reply by then. We’ve everything we need to throw a full Gather if we wanted to, so we’ve certainly enough supplies for a day or so.”

“Are they going to bed?” O’rlen asks, frowning at the thought. “I didn’t think it was worth her time to figure out the heir business. She’s obviously… a bred Lady. They view the world so differently than crafters and riders.” He rubs a hand along his square jaw with a huff of contempt. “C’aol should’ve been the better man and told her no. He sighs then and looks towards Aerishani. “I don’t want to think about that man. He’s a subject I want to avoid when we’re finding out we’ve got twin boys due,” clearly, his dreams have a direction, “and our impending marriage.” He twines their fingers together and lifts them to press against his lips before he settles them on his chest. “Let’s make it a Gather. A Lady and Lord wouldn’t hesitate to make it so. It’ll be Honshu’s first Gather that it hosts,” he beams at her, “And we can make sure people recognize our claim as Weyrlady and Weyrlord. Whether or not I stay Honshu’s Weyrleader, I’ll always be it’s Weyrwoman’s Weyrlord.” He shifts then, moving so he can claim her lips as his hands sneak down her side. “My future bride,” he murmurs between kisses,

“She has to produce heirs in a set time or they’ll take her rank from her and pass it to some distant relation,” Aerishani says quietly, ducking her head slightly as she also has to acknowledge, “just as Honshu would pass to another queen if Amorenth failed to rise. No matter what advances we make… they can’t seem to uncouple any power women hold from their ability to reproduce.” Running a hand over the bump that continues to make a mockery of her clothes fitting properly, she murmurs, “At least these are ours and because we want them,” though she can’t help but smile and tease, “whether they’re boys or girls or one of each.” She gives a quiet huff, remarking, “Amorenth probably knows that too.” Not that her queen is at all forthcoming at this point, too busy pressing herself against Roreliuth until she’s fitted herself close just how she wishes to find sleep. Aerishani’s acquiescence to O’rlen’s thoughts about the gather is provided in the form of a pleased hum that transforms into another sound entirely as his hands drift down her sides. “If we were going to do this properly, I should keep you from our bed until we’re married,” she pretends to consider on the heels of a kiss and before she claims another. She can’t help but laugh, for it’s far too late for that, and far too late to keep her from doing anything but getting layers of clothing out of the way and encouraging him to remind her exactly why casual physical contact is a dangerous game for them.

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