A.N: Well, here we are, the final chapter! Hope you guys enjoy. : )
Noted this ones a little different than the previous two, most obvious being that it's half as long as the others, and that instead of coming up with the babe's name, we're finding a nickname for it. Reason being that Gene and Punzie would've already picked out a girl's name for Ayden. So, it's a bit of a different pace, but hopefully a good one, and fair warning, it's also a little angsty.
~I'm calling Evelyn, "Marie" in this, which is her middle name. Since most everyone calls her Marie, I thought it'd be confusing to use her first name. The only one who really calls her Evelyn is her father, but to most everyone else she's Marie. I think she'd be annoyed by her first name, preferring to be called Marie, instead. Like, how Eugene didn't particularly like his name.
~Marie is 7 and Ayden is 2 years old.
Eugene paced haphazardly up and down the hallway, making sure not to get too far away from the ivory double doors that lead to his and Rapunzel's bedchambers. She'd woken up in the middle of the night, gripping his arm in a vice like hold. Her heavy breathing and the sweat that graced her brow told him all he needed to know. But it wasn't until she grunted out, "Baby's coming," that it hit him with all the intensity of a speeding arrow.
The baby was coming, three weeks early. Rapunzel was in labor. He needed to go and get the Queen, pronto.
That was roughly six hours ago. Rapunzel had been in labor for half the night. And every yelp and groan of pain from the other side of the door made Eugene's heart ache for his wife.
He was increasingly worried. Marie and Ayden hadn't taken this long, three hours tops for Ayden, Marie even less.
But there was more. First off, the baby was three weeks early and on top of that; Rapunzel hadn't had the easiest pregnancy. Her morning sickness was much worse and lasted longer than before; her mood swings were rather violent and much more frequent. Not to mention all of her other symptoms, the swelling, aching and fatigue had been downright horrible. She'd also had bouts of random fevers crop up at least twice a month since the sixth month of her pregnancy, which unfortunately put the baby in harm's way and was probably the cause of Rapunzel's preterm labor.
When she was eight months along, she was stricken with a fever that'd escalated dangerously high. Fortunately, they were able to get it back down before it'd reached high enough to cause much damage, but still, that had been a very scary experience. It shook Eugene up quite a bit.
Needless to say, he was sick with worry.
Eugene continued his pacing, glancing at the double doors frequently, especially when there was any kind of noise from inside. While he knew it was forbidden, he wanted nothing more than to be in there with Rapunzel. He couldn't stand this ongoing waiting game.
"Son, you'll make a rut in the carpet if you're not careful."
He turned around at the sound of a warm, deep voice.
The King of Corona stood with two cups of coffee. He offered Eugene one, "I figured you could benefit from a good cup of Joe."
Eugene accepted the coffee with a gratefully tired smile. "Thank you, sir." He promptly proceeded to take a long sip, but then stopped and jumped in painful surprise. "Ah, it's hot!"
"Oh, sorry, I should've warned you."
He only stared back at the King with a deadpan expression, none too happy about his now scorched tongue.
Eugene put his cup down on the hallway table and sighed. "It's taking too long."
The King approached him and put a comforting hand on his shoulder. "I'm sure everything's all right, Eugene."
"I just wish they could give us an update or something, anything."
"Have you told the kids yet?"
Eugene's brown eyes widened in surprise. "Oh my God, the kids! I completely forgot about them."
King Philip chuckled good naturedly, "That's understandable." He nodded his head, motioning down the hallway. "Go ahead and wake them, then. I'll wait here for any updates."
Eugene looked slightly torn. "Are you sure?"
"Need I remind you, she's my daughter as well. I am just as concerned as you are."
He turned Eugene around by the shoulders and pushed him lightly. "Now go and get the kids. It'll provide a good distraction."
Marie walked beside her father as he paced, mirroring his movements. She was getting bored and needed something to occupy her time, so she figured she might as well try this walking back and forth thing. Maybe it would be fun.
Papa and Ayden had gone downstairs to the playroom and so she was left alone with her father. It must've been at least an hour since he'd woken them up.
Eugene's gaze was adverted to the floor, muttering unintelligibly under his breath from time to time. He didn't even notice Marie walking beside him and she didn't feel the need to alert him to her presence. He looked very worried, so she decided it best to leave him be.
The two paced for a couple minutes more before a loud, painful sounding grunt and a little bit a scream came from her parent's bed chambers. They stopped and Marie looked up at him. Now he looked even more anxious, even a little scared. She frowned; she'd never seen him like this before.
He looked down, surprised. "Evelyn, um . . ."
"Is Mommy okay?"
He sighed and then knelt down so they were eye to eye. "Mommy's going to be fine, sweetheart."
"Then why are you so worried?"
Can't hide anything from this one, can we? he thought. "Well, because Mommy's been in there for a long time and you and Ayden didn't take this long, so I guess I am a little worried."
"Why is it taking so long?"
He shrugged, "I don't know, Evelyn."
Seeing her father's tired, worried face tugged at Marie's heartstrings. He wasn't making any silly jokes or trying to be funny and generally looked the farthest thing from happy. To be honest, that scared her a little. Her Daddy was always such a goofball and now he looked the complete opposite, all serious and worried. She didn't like it.
Moved by compassion and a bit of her own nervousness, she stepped forward and wrapped her arms around his neck, hugging him close.
Eugene wrapped his arms around her in turn, a warm feeling growing inside his chest. Having her warm little body tucked against his, somehow made him feel ten times better. He knew what she was trying to do in comforting him and she probably wanted a little comfort herself.
He picked her up as he stood, and though she was getting a little big, she still fit quite comfortably in his arms. She stayed around his neck, brown head burrowed in the crook of it.
Eugene put a hand on her back, as a marvelous idea suddenly struck him, "Hey, Evelyn."
"What?" she mumbled.
"Would you like to dance?"
She pulled back to look at him, her brow creased in confusion, "Huh?"
"You know, dance?" He smiled at her. "Where I take your hand," he took her right hand in his left. "And you put your hand on my shoulder," he nodded at her to do so.
A small smile crept onto her face.
"May I have this dance, Miss Evelyn Marie Fitzherbert?" Eugene asked with a very formal tone to his voice, a smile creeping onto his face.
A blush colored her cheeks as her smile grew wider. She responded with the same type of formality, "Why of course, Sir Eugene."
"And now, we waltz . . ." he whispered to her.
With them now in the proper position and properly acquainted, he began to dance a slow, steady waltz. One, two, three. One, two, three . . . and so forth.
They danced down the hallway, he swirling and stepping, while she giggled all the while. By the dance's end, Eugene found himself laughing along with her, his stress gone for the moment.
So involved in their dancing, they never noticed Rapunzel's screams of pain, turn to cries of life.
He looked and saw a nursemaid standing just outside his and Rapunzel's chambers. With Marie still in his arms, Eugene ran down the length of the hallway and approached her. "Well?"
The nursemaid smiled, "Both Princess Rapunzel and the baby is alright, sir. You may come in, if you wish," she gestured to the open doors.
Eugene stared back at her in shock, overwhelmed with unbearable relief, it crashing down on him in waves. He swallowed dryly. He then tore his gaze away from the nursemaid, to the open doorway.
It wasn't until he heard Rapunzel call out his name that he moved inside. And the sight that met his eyes was one that made him smile widely.
Rapunzel sat up against a pillowed headboard, clearly exhausted, but smiling triumphantly. Queen Katherine had happy tears in her eyes as she turned to him with a small bundle in her arms. A pink bundle, he quickly noted.
Marie stayed silent, curious green eyes looking about hungrily. She was unsure of what to do or say, she staying put until her father either put her down or someone spoke to her. Fortunately, the latter came pretty quick.
"Hey, Marie, come sit over here by Mommy."
Eugene did as indicated and set Marie down on their bed. She crawled over to her mother, looking wary.
"Sweetheart, it's okay." Rapunzel opened her arms for a hug, to which she quickly responded and folded into. Burrowing her head into her mother's chest, Marie sighed contently.
Eugene, on the other hand, had finally been handed the little pink bundle, while Katherine stepped out to fetch her husband and grandson.
He gazed down at the baby in wonder. She was swaddled tight, only her little face visible. He could already tell she was going to have Rapunzel's nose and by the curve of her lips, she'd have Rapunzel's smile as well.
"So you're the one who's been causing Mommy so much trouble," he said softly as he stood by Rapunzel's head.
She looked up at her husband, "My thoughts exactly."
He smiled. "She's beautiful."
"Just like this one here," she patted Marie's back softly, who had finally looked up.
"Can I see?"
"Sure." Eugene set the infant down in Rapunzel's arms.
Both mother and daughter looked into the baby's face with amazement and joy. "Ah . . .!" Marie gasped excitedly. She was a big sister two times over, and this one was a girl! She couldn't wait to play dolls with her and do each other's hair, once she was big enough.
"Look," Rapunzel said, indicating to both Marie and Eugene. She pulled back the baby's pink blanket some, off of her head. What she revealed was not brown hair, like they were expecting, but bright blonde wisps.
Eugene blinked in astonishment. This was interesting.
Rapunzel smiled excitedly at him, "She's got blonde hair."
"That is- I mean . . . what does that mean?"
She giggled. "I'm pretty sure she doesn't have any powers."
"Well, don't you think we should test it or something?"
Just then, the doors opened and in came the King, Queen and Ayden, the toddler holding onto his grandmother's hand. But as soon as he saw the rest of his family, he let go of her and ran over to his father, a wide smile on his face.
Eugene bent down to pick him up.
"Ayden," Rapunzel called to her son as her parents approached the bed.
He turned his head and looked down, a frown coming across his face as he noticed the baby in her arms. "What's that?"
"That, would be you're new baby sister," Eugene put him down by Marie so he could get a closer look. Both children looked quietly on at the baby, while Rapunzel smiled proudly.
"What's her name?" Philip asked quietly, mirroring his daughter's pride and joy in his blue eyes and soft smile.
Eugene and Rapunzel locked gazes for a moment before answering, and then with a nod of her head, she announced, "Isabel Rose."
"Aw, that's beautiful," Katherine gushed, dabbing at her wet green eyes with a handkerchief.
"Hi, Isabel," Marie said, smiling happily down at her new little sister.
But Ayden didn't catch on quite as quick. Rapunzel noticed his confusion and repeated the name to him. "Ayden, can you say, Isabel?"
"Say, Isabel," Marie encouraged him.
He tried. "Izza . . . Iz-"
"Isabel," Rapunzel repeated.
Ayden then smiled brightly as he triumphantly said, "Izbee!" He threw his hands up in the air as he said it, as if it was some great proclamation.
Marie frowned, "No, Ayden that's-"
"Close enough," Rapunzel interrupted, putting a gentle hand on her daughter's shoulder.
"Well, that's one way to say it," Eugene commented with a grin. Both the King and Queen chuckled.
"Izbee! Izbee!" he continued to proclaim, seeing as it was so well received by everybody. But, his shouting disturbed another small being, as she began to squirm in her mother's arms and then gave off a sputtered wail.
Ayden whipped his head around, immediately going silent as his father gave him a stern look.
He looked down at his hands, "Sorry," he mumbled.
"Now you made her cry," Marie chided.
But a soft humming directed their attention over to Rapunzel. Slowly, she began to sing a familiar lullaby. "Flower gleam and glow, let your power shine. Make the clock reverse, bring back what once was mine. Heal what has been hurt, change the fates design. Save what has been lost. Bring back what once was mine." She sighed, "What once was mine."
All leaned in to see if Isabel's hair started to glow, Ayden excluded since he didn't know what was going on, and only knew the song as nothing more than a comforting lullaby.
But, the only thing of interest was that Isabel quieted, settling into Rapunzel's arms more comfortably.
While everyone else sat back, only slightly defeated, Ayden smiled joyfully. "She stopped crying!" he announced, although this time remembering to keep his voice down.
His mother smiled back at him, and in an act of both joy and brotherly love, Ayden crawled over and kissed Isabel on the cheek, a little sloppily, but the baby didn't seem to mind as her only response was to adjust slightly.
"Hey Izzy," he said quietly, just enough for Rapunzel and Marie to hear.
A.N: Well, there ya have it- for the last time -her nickname is Izzy, full name being Isabel Rose Fitzherbert! Notice how she cries when Ayden calls her, Izbee. That'll be used in later stories. ; )
~As I said before, feel free to uses these names for Eugene and Rapunzel's children if you want to. And you can even reference this story if you'd like, just be sure to tell you're readers where you got the info, please. I forgot to mention, my names for the King and Queen are, Philip and Katherine. You can use those, too. I think it'd be cool if all us Tangled authors could use the same names for the King and Queen.
Anyhoo, I still need a Tangled Beta. I know I sound like a broken record that you'd like to toss out the window, by now. But, please, if you're interested either send me a PM or leave a review. I would appreciate it so much. Please and thank you!