Chapter Forty-Nine: Birth II

Yuu was in the Tokyo Central hospital, pacing in the hallway. Hisashi was in a room in the maternity ward, though with the way he was, Yuu wondered if they shouldn't be in the psych ward again. The blond had turned into a complete mess on the way down, and even though he was a ways from the door, Yuu could still hear his low sobs. Hisashi's anxiety had shot through the roof and they'd already given him drugs to offset a panic attack, though it hardly seemed to calm him down.

Yuu was so distressed himself he couldn't stand to be in the room. He had always been very adept at empathizing with others, and right now he knew exactly how Hisashi felt. To have the life of Atsushi be in danger was the ultimate blow and Yuu feared how his boyfriend would cope should the worst happen…

Tears gathered in the corners of the brunet's eyes and Yuu shook his head roughly. No, he couldn't think like that. He had to stay strong. They were going to be fine.

But even as he told himself that, Yuu breathed a silent prayer that their baby would live, though the odds were stacked against them.

Rushed footsteps rang in his ears and Yuu glanced down the other end of the hallway, where he saw a doctor and several nurses coming their way. It wasn't their usual doctor, Gensei-sensei, but as the group approached one of the nurses recognized Yuu and quickly made an introduction.

"Yanase-san, this is Sakurai-sensei. Gensei-sensei is with another patient right now but Sakurai-sensei specializes in flu births as well."

Yuu nodded and turned to the man, who despite his composed demeanor, had kindness in his eyes.

"Please," Yuu said with a low bow. "Do everything you can."

"I will, Yanase-san," Sakurai said soberly. "Now tell me about Araki-san."

"I don't know how it happened," Yuu said. "But he just started to go into premature labor. His belly button is leaking all over the place."

"All right, let's go in and I'll have a look at him. But the case of your partner is actually very commonplace with flu births. Some men just don't have the biological coping skills to hold a baby for nine months so premature births are happening more and more."

"I guess I can see that," Yuu replied, though this didn't alleviate any of his worry. He led doctor Sakurai into the room, and was glad to see Hisashi looking a little better. Renaka sat next to the bed, holding his hand and gently talking to him and they both looked up as the group entered the room.

Guilt washed over Yuu as he saw Hisashi's eyes flood with relief as he saw his boyfriend, and Yuu quickly rushed to his side.

"This is Sakurai-sensei. He's going to help you. Can you tell us how you're feeling?"

"Strange," Hisashi choked out, his throat sore from sobbing. "My stomach doesn't hurt anymore but it feels fluttery, like it's pulsing. But my back really aches."

Sakurai nodded in understanding.

"Those symptoms are common during premature labor, but with flu births things go a little differently." The doctor walked over to Hisashi and gently felt his baby bump for a few seconds.

"Yep, those are contractions you're having. The baby could be here any time."

"But," Hisashi stuttered. "I always heard that contractions were painful. Why can't I feel them?"

"It's common for premature births to be far less painful than normal ones. However, once your navel begins to split that will be a different story."
"What do you mean?" Yuu asked.

"Well in flu births, the belly button elongates into a slit and rips open during the crowning, but as yours is still normal sized…frankly it's going to be quite painful. I'll have a nurse put you on painkillers right away to ease your discomfort.

"And if worst comes to worst, there is the option of a C-section."

Hisashi swallowed nervously and his lip began to quiver. Yuu noticed and reached down to squeeze his hand as the blond asked the hardest question yet.

"What are the chances of At—the baby surviving?"

Sakurai smiled somberly.

"You are one of the lucky ones Araki-san, as fetuses seven months or older have a high chance of survival. However once the baby is born, we will have to rush him over to the neonatal intensive care unit for tests, just to make sure he's healthy.

"Now, if you're ready, I'd like to get you on an epidural to ease your pain."

Hisashi nodded and allowed the nurses to hook up the tiny needle to his spine, and after a few minutes he felt the pain in his back dull. When they were done, Yuu pulled up a chair to Hisashi's side, always holding his hand in comfort.

"It's going to be okay, Sa-chan," Yuu murmured to him. Hisashi smiled gratefully and settled against his pillow, a little calmer now that his partner was with him. It was then that Yuu glanced across the bed to Renaka-san, who seemed to be deep in thought.

"Renaka-san? Are you all right?" He asked.

"Hmm? Oh yes Yuu, I'm fine," She replied with a smile that didn't quite touch her eyes. "It's just hard for a mother not to worry."

Yuu nodded understandingly, as he too was on pins and needles as the nurses began to set up in preparation for the birth.

"Araki-san," One of them said. "We're going to adjust your bed. Are you familiar with flu birthing procedures?"

"Yes," Hisashi nodded, though right now he was so nervous all he could do was squeeze Yuu's hand as the next fifteen minutes passed. It was then that doctor Sakurai once again timed his contractions and found him to be ready for pushing.

"All right Araki-san," He said. "We need you to pull yourself up in order to open the navel canal. Do you want help?"

A pale Hisashi nodded and Sakurai directed Yuu and Renaka to each of the blond's arms to help assist with the pushing. But as Hisashi leaned forward and began, tears began to well up in his eyes again.

"It's not working," He sniffed. Sakurai also noticed that the belly button was not opening.

"Keep trying, it might take a few minutes."

Hisashi pushed harder and cried out as his belly button began to tear open, but not enough for a baby to pass through.

"If your canal doesn't open within the next couple minutes, Araki-san," Sakurai said tactfully. "I'm afraid we're going to have to do a C-section or the baby could possibly suffocate."

Hisashi's anxiety spiked and his breathing became labored as he began to panic, and he looked over at Yuu as his boyfriend suddenly dropped his arm.

"I have an idea," Yuu said. "Put the bed down a bit. I'm going to get behind him and help him push."

Sakurai's eyebrows rose at the idea but he slowly nodded.

"It could work. Hina-kun, adjust the bed."

The nurse complied and adjusted the head of the bed farther down so Yuu could sit behind Hisashi.

"Be careful Yuu-kun," Renaka said worriedly. Yuu nodded and hooked his elbows underneath Hisashi's armpits.

"Okay Sashi, let's get Atsushi out." He whispered in the blond's ear. Hisashi dipped his chin shakily and gasped as they both began to bear down against his stomach with double the force. The shear amount of strength surprised Hisashi and his eyes widened as he felt his stomach begin to rip open.

"Ahh!" He cried. While the epidural did block some of the pain, Hisashi was still mortified to see blood and clear fluid pour out of his abdomen. And the agony only increased as he felt the baby begin to crown.

"Keep going," Sakurai said. "You're almost there!"

Hisashi grabbed onto his knees and gave a final heave, and found a small wet form emerge from his stomach. Hisashi and Yuu stared down at their son's face and sticky curls, and waited on needles for him to make a sound.

"Nurse!" Sakurai called. One of the ladies raced forward and wrapped the newborn in a blanket, and the second she picked him up, Atsushi let out a creaky wail.

Hisashi collapsed against Yuu with unfathomable belief and with teary eyes watched his baby being carted off to the NICU.

"Yuu, go with him." He murmured as the nurses began to prepare to stitch up his ripped stomach. Yuu nodded and rushed after them. And even though they still had a ways to go before getting out of the danger zone, they both were just happy that Atsushi had made it.

This chapter is dedicated to my darling Cerberus Revised. Without her we never would have had the Uke Flu, let alone these births. So three cheers for the tri-hound! This chapter is for you my cyber seme.

And Vincent Claudius, pinky5907, starrynight1987, puppyfacetwo, sunset siren curse, hiyokocchi, MorallyEvil, Annalisse Rubisher, nekocandy4life, fionamoto, Chiho Kazusa, gothpandaotaku, and Kiyame Hikari-chan- thank you all for your awesome reviews. I treasure them all and hope you wonderful readers enjoyed the latest chapter.

Nostalgia next. Kisses!