Time has passed so quickly. I can scarcely believe that it has been 5 years since the plague, the rising... Xander falling in love. Do not go gently. Oh how that echos in my mind. It has been even longer since Grandfather has given me the two poems. He gave me a choice that no one else would have given me. To be controlled, do what society wanted me to do or to control my own destiny. Now Society is dead; I'm allowed freedom, freedom that came at a price that was paid with the lives that died of the terrible mutated disease. That dark night is over but, the morning has never ended. The freedom that I have enjoy the most is having the freedom to wear whatever color, (which is usually green for me, of course), that I please. We also have the freedom to do and create so much more than we could under society. At the start the taste was sour and tart. How can one taste sweetness after having so much darkness surrounding our lives. Now the light pours through as we now have the freedom to do little things such as; run, jump, yell, lay down just watching the clouds and smelling the green grass. Freedom is so sweet. And it will be even more enjoyable to be able to raise a family in such an environment.
I look down, and smile what I find. I'm wearing a grass green V-neck top that has knit work on the shoulders. It's one of my favorites because it's like a piece of artwork on its own. However, it isn't the simple design that stands out the 's a natural artwork that came over time. My grin widens as I run my hands over my swollen midsection. It feels hard, but as I continue to rub my belly I feel the life inside wiggle and kick in response. I gasp as I'm reminded just how strong this little life is, and how excited I am to meet them. I look out the window and see some children playing in the park that was recently put up right next to our home. I realized just how much I couldn't wait to see my own children doing the same thing, and it's all because we now have the freedom to enjoy watching our kids grow up this way.
The rising has done so much for everyone, let alone, Ky and I. All of the wonders we have enjoyed would have been nothing but fleeting thoughts and dreams if it wasn't for the rising or people like grandfather. Sometimes, I think about what life would have been like if the rising never happened, if I never did have a choice. Would society die in some way anyway? Would Ky and I still find a way to be together? I can not comprehend that it would not have happened. Regardless of the many factors of this complex question, I chose my path, and there isn't any regret for anything that was done. I can think freely without worrying about what people will see. No longer are their those that stalk my dreams for thoughts of non conformity. This is something I'm forever grateful that my child will never have to deal with.
Along with adjusting to our new freedom we have had other adjusting to do. We have made a life here in Camas. Ky is still a pilot, helping people everywhere. I sometimes dare to think he is as good as The Pilot himself. That may be a little conceited but Ky is an excellent pilot and he has proven himself on numerous occasions. However he wouldn't be able to do that if we didn't live in Camas. That meant saying goodbye to the city and province that I grew up in. But I have found that I love it out here. It's so close to how the outer provinces and the carving felt. Wind constantly whips my hair this way and that; stirring up that wonderful earthy smell makes that me want to sink into the rich dirt. One of the differences is that out here there is grass and sand. When I stand and feel soft grass mixed with fine red sand in between my toes; I'm reminded of those who died in The Carving. It reminds me especially of Indie. I will never forget those months in the Carving with her; they changed me. Camas being the mountainous province is a constant reminder of The Carving, just not as grand. The earthy smell I spoke of is one that Ky loves. It's always blowing here in Camas. Memories along with them, swirling around us.
I shift my thoughts to my dear friend Xander. Xander is still living in the Outer Provinces in the Stone villages. He makes such a difference out there helping with medical breakthroughs. I am so proud of him. He married and already has a little girl that is as beautiful as he is handsome. Everyone has made a new life and found some joy worth living for.
My thoughts are interrupted with a pang of something. Sleepiness, I wasn't able to get in a comfortable position last night for a long time, so I guess it's now taken its toll. I start to walk through my beautiful house. I made sure that the walls are covered in paintings, mostly ones that Ky painted. Even though I myself have tried to paint, I can never seem to paint as well as Ky does. He paints gracefully, so gracefully that the brush itself never seems to lose touch with the paper. Like a hand dance; Together we painted the baby's bedroom with bright colors that wouldn't be overgrown later. I peek in to make sure everything was still in its place. Crib against the wall, changing table across from the crib, a treasure chest hand carved by Ky full of little toys at the foot of the crib, and a closet full of clothing given to us by friends and family.
When Ky and I announced my pregnancy, I was shocked at how been thoughtful and generous people were given the opportunity to be. It's so amazing that to grow up never seeing this side of people, but when you give people the chance and reason you find yourself being blessed and blessed again. It warms my heart that our little child will grow up in this kind of way. I smile as I walk... check that, waddle the rest of the hall to our bedroom. Ours is simply decorated to feel like the outdoors. I climb under the covers and sink into the bed comfortably and smile at all the things I have to be thankful for. Amazingly sleep drifting towards me quickly. My eyes feel heavy and I quickly gave into the weight of it. I drift off thinking of how relieved I will be when our baby finally makes up its mind to make an appearance.
I lurch awake. Something fades away in my body like I have been scrunched up and a muscle had cramped up. Whatever it was, it's gone. I lay there just looking at the beautiful sky that Ky had painted as soon as we got this house. He said that you always want to look up when you wake up and have a beautiful sunrise be the first thing you see. As I lay there I here someone out in the kitchen, moving things around. Ky is home, I can barely contain my excitement as I try to get myself out of bed. I slowly walk down the hall to spy on him. He was in the kitchen making food for dinner tonight. I waited there trying to plot my next point of action.
"I know you're there Cassia," Ky says without looking up from the stove.
He was getting good at this. Looking guilty that I got caught in the act, I walk the rest of the way into the kitchen towards him. He turns, giving me a bright smile as he opens his arms to swallow me in a hug. His skin just starts to touch mine when I feel something building up within my abdomen. By the time I was in his arms I start to slump over in pain. It's been about a minute since the weird feeling I had when I woke up. Ky was startled by my sudden movement and misses me. I was close to falling on the ground when Ky grabbed me, holding me up in his arms. This is a pain that I have never felt before. It feels as if something is wrapped around my stomach and squeezing. I hold onto Ky, squeezing him until it finally eases. Air escapes my mouth as I breathe out a breath I didn't know I was holding. I look up to see Ky looking down in concern.
"Cassia, what's going on, what just happened?" He asked worriedly
As I look up at him, fear etches onto his face, "I think that was our baby telling us that they are ready."
"That can't be right, labor should take a long time." He exclaimed, obviously alarmed over the development of things.
"Listen, I was asleep for a long time, I probably just..." I stop mid sentence. I felt something release, and sure enough, water came gushing down, making a small puddle underneath me.
Ky now looked frantic. "Cassia, I don't know how to do this!"
I tried to respond but a contraction like no other had gotten a hold of me, and I could no longer speak without grunting. The pressure I felt was almost unbearable as I felt the urge to push, but I knew that I couldn't yet. The contraction finally passed, and I once again slumped in Ky's arms.
"You need to help me to our bedroom now, before another contraction comes. Whether you like it or not this baby is coming, and it won't wait for us to argue about anything."
He looked at me and then picked me up quickly, walking quickly to our bedroom and laying me down on our bed.
"Go grab scissors, and two shoelaces now, I can only hold off pushing for so long!" I yelled as I felt the edge of another contraction.
"Ngghhhh" I groaned as once again, I fighting the urge to bare down. I wasn't sure how much longer I could wait. A couple of minutes later Ky finally came rushing in with the needed equipment, along with other items such as a towel, water, and a blanket. I smiled and took a moment to be proud of him, but only for a moment, because once again a contraction started and I was ready for it. A sheen of sweat sprayed across my forehead, each contraction getting harder and harder. Ky had barely arranged a towels underneath me when I bore down with all I had, letting out audible grunts and groans. I gave it all I had, finally rewarded with the feeling of something releasing.
"Wow, you almost have the head out Cassia!" Ky exclaimed in wonder
I ignored him as I continued to push, grabbing the covers of the bed and clawing at them. Sweat beaded my forehead from exertion, and exhaustion started to sweep over me.
"How much more" I pleaded
"The heads out Cassia, just the shoulders left and you're done, just breathe, you're doing great!" Ky reported
I groaned, but it was rather short lived at I gave everything left I had into the last push. I stifled a scream as the rest of the baby dispersed right into Ky's hands. His eyes twinkled as he watched the little red thing wriggle in his arms and howl. He laughed as he looked at me with affection.
"Our baby, she's here."
"She certainly is, and she was rather eager to see the world." I smile down at the infant who was almost in my arms. I recoiled, feeling another contraction.
"Ky, what's going on?" I was terrified something was wrong. As the contraction progressed I tried to stay on top of it, but I felt I was being sucked into a vortex that I couldn't climb out of any longer. This was the first time throughout the progression of giving birth that I truly felt like screaming.
"Cassia, there's another head coming out" Ky said astonished.
"What?!" I cried, I could hear the franticness in my own voice. Twins! No way! I was already exhausted that I could sleep for days, if I tried to have another baby, I would be sleeping for years.
"Calm down, it's okay, you can do this." Ky soothed
He reached over and brushed my cheek with his hand, bringing his head down to kiss me. Another contraction came and he just held me there as it ran its course. I looked at him and felt the strength to do this once more.
"Okay, I can do this" I said to myself, bracing myself for the next contraction. A thought came to mind and I looked around for my baby girl and realized that he had rested her all snuggled and on the floor next to the bed. I returned my mind to the task at hand, steeling myself for the worst, and it came. I gritted my teeth as the full impact hit me. Everything burned, and there wasn't anywhere to escape, so I met it head on, showing that I was stronger than the pain. Ky stood there wide eyed as I managed to eject the baby in one push. He caught the baby and continued to stare at me in amazement. I fell back onto the bed. Jeez, there had better not be another baby after this one. Ky just continued to smile at the infants.
"Are you ready to hold your son and daughter?"
Was I ever, but I was so tired that the world was quickly fading, and I gave into the darkness that was slowly surrounding me. I allowed to be taken somewhere far from here, but as I was just starting out on my journey; I heard a fuzzy I love you, and a brush on my forehead.
I forgot what happened. The last thing I remember is laying on a bed, and Ky was smiling and holding up a baby. Our baby. The bliss of it all was too great. But what happened? Did I fall into sleep? Ky said that I stayed awake but I still don't remember most of it. I couldn't remember the birth. I couldn't understand why. Like the night I took the red pill. I could feel the thick suffocating fog in my mind blocking everything. I looked around my bedroom, and realized that Ky had moved to crib in here for now. I do believe I will remember everything with time, but I think it will help to get as much sleep as possible. I sat in my bedroom sleepy but I didn't want to give in to it. I can't sleep, not with the excitement of twins. I smile, I still find it hard to believe we had twins without knowing it. I was shocked when Ky told me as he held one baby. He realized quickly that I truly had no idea what he was talking about when he was referencing the other baby. He started to try and explain that when I gave birth, I had two babies and not just one. It took me a while to accept it, but I think it's amazing. A miracle you might even call it. I sigh contently as I let my eyes wander back over to the crib. I heard the door creak open and watched as Ky poked his head around it. "How are you feeling?" he asks affectionately.
"Pretty good, I mean I'm tired but I'm good." I smile, and he smiles back.
We have a whole new territory to cover and it is a little frightening but it's all so exciting and new that it's a new adventure that I can't wait to start. I'm so grateful that I won't be alone but that I will have Ky in this with and, and with the guidance of my mother and father, I will no longer be reaching but be reached.