Author's Note: This is a sort of gift fic for GoGothGirl, who requested this story. Enjoy, my lovelies! And don't forget to review. Please?
This is set during the Blitz. Lucy is 9, Edmund is 11, Susan is 12 and Peter is 14.
The rain was pattering against the window panes, sliding down in rivulets and it was dark. Lucy was lying on her stomach on her bed, reading a fairy tale, called Rumplestiltskin.
…and so they lived happily ever after, and the Princess and her baby were safe from Rumplestiltskin. Lucy shut the book with a dull thump and pondered about the story. There was something bothering her.
… and the Princess and her baby…
Then something occurred to Lucy.
Where exactly did babies come from?
Lucy was slightly unsettled that she didn't know about this; she considered herself quite smart. Lucy had a vague vision of large women with swollen bellies claiming they were 'pregnant' or something like that but Lucy had never thought about it thoroughly until now.
She got up and ran downstairs, where Susan was sitting before a warm, crackly fire in a plush armchair, also reading a book.
'Susan,' Lucy ran up to her and sat down on the floor.
'Yeah, Lu?' she replied distractedly, flipping a page.
'Where do babies come from?' Lucy asked, not knowing of the mental scarring she would induce in Susan after today.
She dropped the book she was reading. It fell quite painfully onto her lap. 'What did you ask?' she said warily.
'Where do babies come from?' Lucy repeated her question.
Susan twisted her fingers around. She knew that this day would come sooner or later. Then she got a flash of inspiration.
'To make a baby you need a man's sperm and a woman's egg cell. When the sperm and the egg meet each other, a zygote, or a zygocyte is formed. Thenfetal stage starts at the beginning of the 9th week following fertilization, after the zygote, blastocyst, and embryonic stages. The risk of miscarriage decreases sharply at the beginning of the fetal stage. The fetus is not as sensitive to damage from environmental exposures as the embryo was, though toxic exposures can often cause physiological abnormalities or minor congenital malformation. Fetal growth can be terminated by various factors, including miscarriage, feticide committed by a third party, or induced abortion.' Susan explained.
Lucy blinked and thought that her brain might've just melted into pink mush.
'There's still more. Would you like to hear it?' Susan asked, hiding a smile.
'I think I should just go ask someone else,' Lucy said, picking herself up.
'Good luck,' Susan called out to her as she walked out, and Lucy wondered what exactly did she mean. Lucy found Peter in the kitchen, sipping some tea while reading a newspaper.
'Peter,' Lucy hopped onto a chair and sat next to Peter. She laid her head on Peter's shoulder.
'Hmm?' Peter turned around to look at her tenderly. He took another sip.
'Where do babies come from?'
Peter choked on his tea and accidentally knocked his cup onto the floor, where it broke with a small tinkle. Why on earth did that question always manage to induce such behavior in her brothers and sisters? From the room she had just left, Lucy could hear a distinct peal of laughter that sounded most suspiciously like Susan. But then again, she could've misheard.
Peter was still coughing and spluttering. The whole kitchen tabletop was splattered with tea. Peter wordlessly got up and retrieved a damp towel. He then cleaned the table meticulously, studiously not looking at Lucy. She waited patiently. She was sure that if everyone else didn't want to tell her, Peter would. He never let her down.
'Where do babies come from?' Lucy repeated her question when Peter was done.
'I have no idea.' Peter claimed unconvincingly, cheeks turning red.
'I know you do. Please Peter!' Lucy begged him, brown eyes looking up at him beseechingly.
'Okay, well… a man and a woman love each other very much. Then they… do something that makes them have a baby. The end.' Peter rushed through and hastily busied himself by arranging some plates and bowls in a cupboard.
'But what's that "something" that they do?' Lucy persisted, jumping of her chair and joining Peter.
'They… tell the stork that they want a baby.' Peter gabbled.
'What's a stork?'
'A stork is a giant bird thing. He was the one that carried you here when you were born.' Peter invented wildly.
'Then why do people's bellies get real big?' Lucy made a distinctly circular shape in front of her.
'Oh, that? Urm… it's just a normal process you have to go through. When you're ready you, er, press your belly button and the baby comes out, whoosh like that.'
'Then what about the stork? I thought you said he was the one who carried babies?' Lucy was getting more and more confused.
'Oh the stork,' Peter cursed inwardly. 'Um… forget about the stork. The stork doesn't exist. I made it up.'
'What makes their bellies grow so big?'
'Because the baby's inside.'
'How did the baby get inside?'
'Er… it climbed in there itself and stayed there.'
'Where did it enter from?'
'Um… it just suddenly appears.'
'How come boys don't ever have babies?'
'Because they don't have a womb.'
'What's a womb?'
'Oh, God.' Peter buried his face in his hands helplessly, shaking like a geriatric leaf in front of a hairdryer. 'I'm not really an expert on the subjects like this, Lu. Maybe when you grow up. It's getting late. You should really get to bed now.' Lucy pouted and perked up again. There was still Edmund.
She trudged upstairs and burst into Edmund's room. He was lying on his bed, just staring at the ceiling.
'Where do babies come from?' she repeated, rapidly getting frustrated. Really, it was just a simple question! What was so very wrong about it?
Edmund sat up straight immediately.
'Babies?' Edmund repeated.
'Yes, babies. I never thought of where they came from until now.' Lucy explained. 'So tell me. Peter mentioned something about a stork and Susan just came up with a lot of scientific claptrap. You're my only hope, Edmund.'
'Stork?' Edmund snorted disbelievingly. 'Sounds like something Peter would say.'
For the next fifteen minutes, Lucy listened to Edmund rant on about men and women and loving and something called sacks, or at least that was what Lucy heard. Lucy simply felt as muddled as ever and wished that she had never mentioned it in the first place.
Edmund was in the middle of talking when Susan and Peter came in. Peter took a look at Lucy listening intently and Edmunds hands gesturing and immediately cottoned on.
'Edmund!!' Peter said in horror. 'She's only nine, for Pete's sake!'
Susan reprimanded him, 'You should know better than to pollute Lucy's mind like that-- hold on, how on earth did you know in the first place?'
Edmund shot Peter an evil look, and Peter instantly started stuttering.
'I--I might've mentioned it-- once or, erm, twice--' Peter looked at Susan's face and hurriedly added, '--but he didn't understand it either!'
'It doesn't matter, I still don't understand anyway,' Lucy said despairingly.
Susan blinked. 'You don't? At all?'
'Good.' Peter, Susan and Edmund said simultaneously.
Author's Note: :) Hope you guys liked it! Reviews would really do my self-esteem a lot of good right now... wink