“I do believe this is the first time you’ve relaxed in a week” Holly smiled looking up at her husband from her position nestled into his arm’s.
“Social event’s are always stressful” he reasoned
“No it was more than that, every time the Duchess or Baron came near you froze. Is there something going on? Do you know something about them I don’t?”
“I just don’t like them that’s all” he replied kissing her forehead
“Why not? They seemed reasonably charming to me” Holly smiled.
“Trust me men do not acquire that sort of wealth without having a few secrets” he replied, She knew there was more to it than that, he was hiding something from her. He hid a lot from her and it was getting worse she didn’t doubt he loved her or think whatever it was he was hiding was anything which would hurt her, but she had known him along time and she knew when things troubled him. Right now it was like he held the weight of the kingdom on his shoulder’s her pregnancy was part of it but there was something else going on but she hadn’t quite worked out what.
“Do you think Anya is in danger? she asked suddenly concerned for her stepsister. “I know she wasn’t happy about the marriage but Orrick … he seemed so sure it would be good for her”
“I don’t begin to understand, what they want with her”
“They… you mean he surely?”
“I mean the duchess and baron.. Whatever they are upto you can bet they are in it together”
“Valdermar your scaring me?!” she whispered.
“I’m sorry.. its probably nothing” Valdermar replied, another lie she was sure of it her husband was worried, no he was scared.. very scared but did he have to be scared of? “Your getting big” he smiled changing the subject and placing his hand to her swollen belly, “We won’t be able to hide it by the Winterball”
“Perhaps I shouldn’t go then” she replied, she didn’t want to face Orrick once he found out. He wasn’t her father but in many ways he was the only father she’d ever known and he would undoubtedly be very disappointed with her and she didn’t need to hear from him how upset her mother would have been she’d chosen this path.
“I won’t have you hide” Valdermar reasoned, “You think you can slip out of the backdoor and no-one will notice? For as much as I wish .. we hadn’t done this, I won’t hide from it. People are going to find out and I’ll be damned if I face the disapproval alone” he sighed “They’ll blame me you know… “
“I won’t let them” she reasoned “I’ll tell them I refused to get herbs”
“Herbs don’t matter, they’ll blame me for putting you in this situation in the first place”
She nodded, resting her head back on his shoulder. She had been so sure this was what she wanted it had seemed so easy but the bigger her stomach got the heavier the guilt. Valdermar was dealing, at least he was trying to accept it but she worried for him. He had such capability’s for anger and frustration she worried he would follow Gabriel down his path once she was gone and if that happened what would happen to Eadric.
“When I’m gone” she whispered “Promise me you’ll try and be a good man… a good father for Eadric”
“I will try” he agreed.
“Don’t try” she urged sitting up “Just do it… if you love me.. Please just try and be a good man, love Eadric keep him safe… promise me”
“Alright” he nodded.
“Will you marry again?” she asked, hoping he would say yes. Valdermar needed someone he needed someone to talk too, to keep him on the right path.
“I think losing two wives is enough” he reasoned.
“The baby… Eadric they will need a mother”
“They will have Hannah” he reasoned “I’ll hire her full time”
“It’s not the same” she reasoned, “Please Valdermar consider marrying again… find someone to love the way you love me”
“I will never love anyone the way I love you” he whispered softly.