Sorry it's been a while. I've been quite busy getting ready for college in the fall! But here is the long awaited arrival of Scamandrios! Enjoy!
The sun had not yet risen in the sky when I felt my first pain. It didn't hurt so badly in the beginning, just a strange pressure in my abdomen. I lay in bed and tried to calm myself by listening to Hector breathe. I tried not to move, because I did not wish to wake him. He was to take his men to battle that day and I could not get in the way of that.
When he rose from the bed I tried to act as though I were sleeping peacefully. The pains had been going on for a couple of hours and I was surprised, that they were not so bad. Obviously, I was a first time mother and quite naïve. Hector knelt next to me when he was done preparing for the day. I still feigned sleep, but feared he could feel the war going on in my body when he pressed his lips to my distended stomach. He didn't seem to notice anything and pressed a kiss to my forehead before leaving our room.
I waited for a while, making sure that he would not return before I got unsteadily to my feet. The pains were still no more than an intense pressure and I attempted to get ready as I normally did. In my naivety, I thought that I had quite enough time before Hector's child would make its entrance into our world.
I slipped a light blue dress over my head and sat at the vanity. My long hair was brushed out and I braided it behind my back, pausing a few times to press a hand to my womb. The pressure was becoming more uncomfortable with each new wave. I finally managed to get ready and I headed out. In all honesty, it felt better to move around. As I began to climb the stairs to the royal pavilion I realized that I could not watch my husband from there. His family would realize that I was not alright and I would not be allowed to stay. I knew the women would usher me down to the infirmary and I would be forced to lie on my back in discomfort until the child was born.
I retreated back down the stairs and found another staircase that led to a watch tower at one corner of the walls that surrounded and protected my great city. I ascended them slowly, a hand pressed to my child as I went. I could see the fighting below and was thankful that I found shelter from my husband's family.
The day went on and the pain got worse. I really had not thought the birth of my child through. I desperately wanted Hector to be by my side even though that was not traditionally done and even though, at that very moment he was out fighting to protect everything he loved.
More than anything, I wanted Hector to see a miracle. The poor man had been fighting nearly every day for nigh on seven years and there hadn't been much to celebrate. I wanted him to see something amazing. I wanted him to see his son come into the world.
As the day wore on, though, I knew that might not be a possibility. I could feel my son lowering in my womb and there was a heaviness on my lower regions that frightened me. Even when I looked down at myself I could see the changes in form my body had gone through just during that day alone.
Being a princess all of one's life certainly did not prepare them for any sort of pain. I had rarely skinned my knee as a child or anything else. I had never been ill either, but bringing a child into the world was excruciating. The pain became fierce and I had to clutch onto the wall to keep myself up. My fingernails dug into the hard sandstone and knees went weak several times as the pains pummeled my poor body.
My eyes never left the fighting below me. As the contractions got stronger and made their presence known more forcibly, it was difficult for me to not fall to my knees. I cradled the bottom of my swollen stomach, begging my son to wait just a little longer. I could not bring him into the world without his father by my side.
"Andromache!" I was pulled out of my anxious reverie by the sound of my mother-in-law. "What are you doing over here?" Hecuba was flanked on either side by my eldest sister-in-laws, Ilione and Creusa.
Before I could even answer them they must have sensed my pain and fear, as I am sure it was blatantly obvious on my face. All three women before me had birthed their own children.
"Do you intend to have Hector's child here?" Ilione demanded.
"I intend to have Hector by my side when his child arrives," I replied, groaning at the end of the sentence as another pain swept over me.
"You cannot be serious, Andromache," Hecuba said quietly. She reached out to take my hand as though to pull me away. "You must take to your bed."
"I am very serious, Hecuba," I said stubbornly. "I will not go lie on back and writhe in discomfort until it is absolutely necessary."
I grasped my stomach as the strangest sensation washed over me, ending in a rush of liquid between my legs. All of the women just looked at the puddle and then up at me. I knew the breaking of the waters meant that there was not much time left. So not even minutes later, I was eating my words to Hecuba and allowing her to help me down the steps.
It took extra long to get to the infirmary because once the waters had broken the pain became much worse. It was almost unbearable and it took all three of the women to help me get through the streets. Thankfully, no one was in the streets to see my distress as they were all watching the battle that I should have still been watching.
The infirmary was full of wounded soldiers and the ones who could, looked up at me curiously when I entered. I was quickly ushered into the royals' own private chambers. My blue gown was stripped off of me and was replaced with a soft, linen shift. I crawled carefully onto the bed before collapsing onto my back. The pains had intensified and had taken a new course throughout my body.
Hecuba, Ilione, and Creusa were still by my side as the midwife made her appearance. She roughly pushed the shift to my waist and spread my knees apart. I gasped at her blatant perusal of my most secret places and my cheeks flamed red.
"The Prince's son is very near to making his first appearance," the woman said happily. "I can hear his dark head already."
I was dismayed to hear such news and resolved to wait for Hector no matter what. I knew I should be pushing, trying to get my son into the world, I felt the need to, however, I could not do it, not without Hector.
"Your Grace," the woman said urgently. "You must push."
I shook my head stubbornly.
"Andromache," Hecuba whispered sharply. "What do you mean by all of this?"
I groaned as another pain washed over my whole body, urging to me to help my son into the world. I bit down and defied what my body wanted me to do. "I told you that I mean to wait for Hector."
Hecuba shook her head in disbelief. "You intend to harm his child in the process?" She asked.
I looked at the older woman at my feet. I had not thought that I might harm the baby. "My Queen, the baby will come when it is ready, whether the Princess here, wants it to or not."
I sighed at that news, but I knew she spoke the truth. I had resigned myself to producing Hector's heir without Hector himself when the door banged open loudly and there he stood in all of his battle glory.
His armor was caked with dirt, his face was smeared with sweat and sand, and his arm was bleeding, but I reached a hand out to him anyways.
"I knew something was wrong," he said as he knelt next to my bedside and kissed the palm of my hand. He put his own huge hand on the hardened mound that was his child.
"Hector!" Hecuba exclaimed. "You cannot be in here. This is not fit for a man's eyes."
"Mother," Hector said through gritted teeth. "I shall decide what I see and what I do not. My wife needs me now and I would appreciate it if you all left us." He looked at his mother and sisters. They all bowed their heads under his hard gaze and retreated, a silent protest still on Hecuba's lips.
The midwife did not seem the least bit concerned that a man had entered her sanctuary. "Prince Hector, we have been waiting for you so this child can be born. Hurry and get cleaned up."
Just seeing my husband made some of my fear and anxieties dissipate. I knew I could do many more things with him by my side than I could without him. Hector disappeared for a moment and I finally let my body begin to do what it wanted to. I bore down with everything I had. Since Hector had appeared I wanted to give him his son more than anything.
Hector appeared a few moments later in a clean tunic and wrap. His arm was bandaged, but in my haze of pain and desire to gift Hector with a son, I noticed that it was bleeding through. He took my hand in his and kissed my temple. I also noticed the trepidation on his face. The brave many by my side had seen many things in battles he had fought, but I was sure he had never expected to see the birth of a child.
And so I pushed and pushed, giving every last fiber of energy I had to produce Hector's son. However, nothing seemed to be happening and I collapsed back on the pillows. My long hair was drenched with my own sweat and my shift was sticking to my distended body.
"What is wrong?" Hector demanded of the woman.
"This is how childbirth goes, my lord. It takes some time, especially when so large a man as yourself and such a slender woman as your wife create a new life."
I saw the guilt on his face and felt very bad for my husband. As was his custom he took on the blame whole-heartedly.
"Come now, Princess. I am sure I can very nearly see this child's dark head," the woman urged me.
I held Hector's hand tightly and turned my face into his chest giving it every last ounce of effort I had. I cried out, the sound muffled by my husband's body and felt such an intense burning that I knew something had to be happening. I continued to push until the horrid feeling was gone.
I looked up to see Hector staring transfixed between my legs. The midwife took my hand and gently brushed my fingers against the sticky hair of my child. Feeling the babe gave me a renewed vigor and I used the pain.
"You are almost there, Andromache," Hector urged me with a huge smile on his face. "Our child is almost here. You can do it." He kissed my forehead and I very nearly screamed with the effort.
Slumping back on the pillows, I felt the babe slide from my body and into the midwife's able hands. "You have a son, Prince Hector," she said, cleaning the baby quickly and placing the bundle in his strong arms.
"We have a son," he corrected her. "I had nearly nothing to do with this miracle." He stared in awe at the child in his arms and I could only smile, itching to have him in my arms.
It was a sweet sight, though. My husband, who carried shields, spears, and swords, cradling the tiniest babe in his strong arms. Hector sat on the bed next to me and gently transferred the bundle to me. I stroked his soft cheek and held him close to me.
Our new family was oblivious to the midwife cleaning me and the room up a bit. Hector wrapped an arm around my shoulders and I met his lips with mine. I instinctually unlaced the shift and guided my breast to my son's mouth. He had no trouble and already had the large appetite of his father as he latched on immediately and went to work.
"I have taken care of your wife, Prince Hector; now let me see about that arm." Hector didn't even seem to notice as the woman unwrapped his arm, cleaning and stitching it.
"Scamandrios," he murmured next to me. "Our son."
There you go! I hope you loved it! Let me know!