Paige stood on the wall just before sunrise. The breeze flowed through her red curls easily. She loved the early morning hours the best because it was peaceful. As she stared off into space, a small kick came from her stomach reminding her that the baby was awake and active. The ripple across her abdomen caused her to laugh and place her hand on her small, rounded stomach.
"I see that you are an early riser too," she said.
A smile formed across her mouth as Paige thought of how near it was until she would meet the baby. Half of a year had already passed since she first came to the wall. The first three months were hardest because she was frightened all the time of being returned to slavery. But, the last three months had been better. Lancelot was always at her side, taking care of her and making sure she did not overdo things. It was as if he were preparing for his first child as well. Paige wondered what he would do when it came time for the baby to be born. However, she shoved that thought back into her mind and continued to enjoy the sunrise.
Later that day, Lancelot and Arthur decided to go on a hunt. Before leaving, Lancelot made sure Guinevere was with Paige. Once reassured that nothing would happen, the two men left the wall and set out to hunt. While riding, Arthur and Lancelot engaged in a brotherly conversation.
"How is Paige doing?" Arthur asked.
"She is doing well, but sometimes I think she is doing more than she should in her condition," Lancelot answered.
"You sound just like a father-to-be does," Arthur joked. "What will you do when the baby is born?"
"I am going to be there, come Hell or high waters, I am going to be with Paige when the baby is born," Lancelot answered confidently.
"Do you love her?" Arthur asked.
"What?" Lancelot stuttered.
"I asked if you loved her," Arthur said.
"Well, I do not know. I mean, can you love someone after knowing them only for a short time?" Lancelot inquired.
"Yes you can," Arthur replied.
"Then yes, I wholeheartedly love her," Lancelot replied.
"And the child that grows within her?" Arthur asked.
"I love it as well," Lancelot said.
"And what about after the baby is born?" Arthur asked.
"I intend to make Paige my wife and raise the child as my own," Lancelot answered coolly.
"I think that you would make a good father," Arthur commented.
The two men continued the hunt for several hours. Meanwhile, back at the wall, the women were talking amongst themselves.
"The man hardly ever says two words! Now you are telling me that he carries on whole conversations with you? Good Lord, what have you done to the man?" Guinevere gasped in shock.
"I have not done a thing. He has done everything for me from rescuing me to helping me prepare for this child. It is as if this child is ours and we are both preparing to become parents," Paige said.
"I think he is preparing to become a father," Guinevere noted.
"No, this is not his child to worry about. It is my responsibility to care for it once it arrives," Paige replied.
"You love him, do you not?" Guinevere asked.
"Yes, I do," Paige answered.
"I know for a fact that he loves you and wants to be there for you. If given the opportunity, I believe that he would love to be the father of this child. Just give him a chance to be that man. You deserve the best and Lancelot is the best," Guinevere said.
"What would I tell my child when he or she notices that Lancelot does not look like them?" Paige asked, concerned.
"You tell that child that Lancelot is their father because he loved them so much from the moment they were born," Guinevere said.
There was a long pause between the two women, both knowing the truth in the last statement.
"Do you think that given the chance, Lancelot would consider marrying me?" Paige timidly asked.
"He would not think twice, he would marry you in a moment. I see the way he looks at you and it is pure love," Guinevere exclaimed.
"Do you really believe that he loves me?" Paige asked.
"Of course I do. Arthur notices it too. He is probably talking to Lancelot at this very moment about you," Guinevere noted.
"I do not know what to do!" Paige exclaimed.
"Just do what is in your heart and it will lead you to the right thing," Guinevere advised.
Paige took to heart what Guinevere had said. Later on, she anxiously paced her room, waiting for Lancelot's return to the wall. The baby was impatient too as it kicked and bounced in her womb. The sounds of hooves against the ground brought relief to Paige's mind as she knew Lancelot and Arthur had returned home safely. She quickly left her room to greet him as he came through the door. As Lancelot walked through the door, he was surprised to see Paige waiting for him.
"Can I talk with you, alone?" she asked softly.
"Of course," he replied.
The two parted from Arthur and went outside to the stables, where it was quiet and they would not be interrupted. Paige kept her hands instinctively over her stomach. Her green eyes shifted back and forth quickly as she was incredibly nervous. Lancelot walked over to her and took her by the hands. Almost instantly, the baby kicked. Paige laughed.
"What is funny?" he asked, confused.
"Put your hand right here," she said, taking his hand and putting it on her stomach. The baby kicked again.
"The baby is strong," he said, smiling at Paige.
"If only you could feel it from the inside, then you would really know how strong it is," Paige said, laughing again.
"Somehow, I do not think that would be possible," Lancelot said, chuckling.
Paige's face went into a look of fright as she said, "Lancelot, I am scared."
"What are you afraid of?" he asked.
"Having this child alone," she answered. "When I was a child, I always dreamed of having a child of my own, but with a husband who loved me, not alone."
"You do not have to go through it alone," he said. "If you would like, I will be there for you."
"You would do that, even though the child is not yours to worry about?" she inquired.
"Paige, I have a confession to make," he said. "Since the moment that you told me of your past and the child within you, I have wanted nothing more than to be with you."
"You want to be with me?" she asked, tears streaming from her eyes.
Slowly, he bent down on one knee and looked up into her emerald eyes. He said, "Paige, would you do me the honor of becoming my wife?"
More tears streamed down her face as she said, "Yes!"
He got up from the ground and pulled her into an embrace, being cautious of her stomach. She pulled her head from his shoulder and looked him in the eyes. Gently, he kissed her. For that moment, nothing else mattered to them but each other and the baby. Their kiss broke when the baby kicked again and Paige was forced to laugh.
"Obviously, someone wants attention," she said, looking down at her stomach.
"Well then," Lancelot replied, smiling.
He bent over and kissed her stomach. It was a quiet moment spent between the three of them. For the first time, Paige felt completely happy.
(1 week later)
Paige walked around her room. In the corner was a cradle for the baby with yellow blankets inside. Once the baby arrived, there would be either pink or blue ones. She was excited about meeting her child for the first time. But, that was still a few months away.
It was early in the morning, so no one else was awake. Paige walked over to her window and looked down in the courtyard inside the wall. Lancelot was down training the newest horse that had arrived the day before. The young stallion was being quite difficult. She covered her mouth as she laughed while Lancelot tried to mount the horse, but quickly fell off. Apparently, he heard her giggle and looked up to the window to see her standing there. Quickly, he flashed a smile at her and continued to try to mount the horse. After two more unsuccessful tries, he finally mounted the stallion. Paige smiled and walked away from the window to go down to him.
As she walked down the stairs to the courtyard, Lancelot dismounted the horse and greeted her with a gentle kiss.
"How are you this morning?" he asked.
"I am just fine. And you?" she replied.
"Doing well," he answered.
"I can see that," she said, smiling. "So, this is the new addition to the stables?"
"Indeed, Arthur wants me to train him. He is rather stubborn, but I think that with time he will make a fine horse," Lancelot said.
"I agree," Paige said.
"What are you doing out here? You should be inside where it is warmer for your health and the baby's," Lancelot said, suddenly realizing that it was freezing outside.
"Oh, nonsense. I will be fine. This baby is not coming for a while, so I want to enjoy what precious time I have left to be outside before I am confined until the baby is born," Paige replied.
"Still, do not linger out here too long. Promise me you will go inside soon and warm up," he said.
"I promise on one condition," she answered.
"What is that?" he asked.
"You come inside with me," she said.
"Alright, agreed," he consented.
The two of them went inside and warmed by the fireplace in the great hall. Paige chattered on about what names she thought of for the baby and Lancelot patiently listened and put in his opinion. He loved listening to Paige get excited about the baby.
"I was thinking about naming the baby Josiah Lancelot if it's a boy and Belle Katherine if it's a girl. What do you think?" she asked.
"Both of those names are strong, good names. I love them both," he replied, smiling at her.
"I'm glad you like them," she said, beaming with pride.
"Paige, there is something I want to ask you," he said.
"Anything," she replied.
"After the baby is born, would you come with me to see my family in Sarmatia?" he asked.
"Of course," she answered.
"I want them to meet my wife and child. We will wait until the baby is old enough to travel, of course," he said.
"I would love nothing more than to meet them," she said.
Lancelot pulled her close and embraced her. He loved her more than anyone else in the world and no matter what others would say, the child within her would always be his. In his heart he knew that his family would adore Paige as much as he did. It wouldn't be long before he became a father and husband.
A/N: I'm so sorry for not updating in a LONG time. School happened and then some other stuff got in the way. I'm hoping that I will be able to work more on this story soon, so just bear with me.