It was the morning of her wedding… could it even be called that? ‘A wedding’ I lifetime of enslavement more like.
Maegan could not recall ever being so terrified, she’d vomited twice and had almost run for it once but no matter how much she told herself the Vauxes needed this she couldn’t seem to steady her nerve.
She had already been shown to her new ‘quarters’ could they even be called that because even the fancy décor could not hide the prison cell they were. Barred windows and a door that could be bolted from the outside. However possibly the most chilling ‘accessory’ where the large iron rings attached to the legs of the bed evidence that if she proved unwilling to cooperate in the bedroom he was quite willing to have her tied down.
“The room was built for Dawn” Ailana explained.
“He expected her to run also?” she asked.
“Not run” Ailana disagreed, “He wanted to make sure no other man could get to her…. You know after…. “ her voice trailing off.
Ailana looked as pale as she did, she wasn’t sure why but she had gathered from a overheard argument that Ailana was yet again being recalled to Hamdun castle.
“Don’t you want to be here either?” she dared ask.
“No-one wants to be here” Ailana reasoned.
“Then why? You were only sent to the castle when I arrived”
“That’s why I was sent” Ailana confessed beginning to cry, “I was ….. sent to convince you if Gabriel could not”
“Oh” Maegan nodded, suddenly understanding this had been some great conspicy from the beginning one both Hamdun women had been involved in. At first both Ailana and the Queen had tried to convince her that Gabriel needed a strong woman, a strong Hamdun woman and that when he had one he could be tamed. However they had quickly changed tacked when the threats where made, making sure she knew what he would do should she refuse.
Still she struggled to hate Ailana for it the argument had made a single thing clear. Ailana was as much of a prisoner to her brother as Maegan was about to come.
“You can still get out” the older girl reasoned, “It’s not too late”
“You didn’t lie to me” she reasoned “He will destroy the Vaux’s if I don’t do this”
“Perhaps… but Orrick he seems like a good man, he wouldn’t want you to do this?”
“I guess he wouldn’t, but has never been good at doing the sensible thing”
Ailana nodded, “Im sorry, I don’t know what advice to give you other than just do what he wants, don’t fight him. He’ll hurt you less”
Maegan nodded, as a knock came at the door. “Come in” she called watching as the door opened and a dark haired girl came in. “Who are you?” she asked “My maid?”
“No” the girl replied “I’m … the midwife”
“I don’t need a midwife”
“He wants me to examine you”
“He wants me to check yer” she reasoned, “When was your last bleed?”
“What business is that of yours” she retorted angrily suddenly understanding.
“The lord, he wants to know”
“Then he can ask me himself”
“Please can I examine yer?” the young girl begged.
“You should let her” Ailana added, “You don’t want to make Gabriel angry”
“Fine” she sighed, “What do you need me to do?”
“Just lie down” the dark haired girl soothed, “It won’t take but a minute”
Climbing onto the bed she lay down, unable to stop tears trickling down her face she took a deep breath while the midwife poked and prodded her belly. She had for many weeks after Christopher’s death hoped he’d left her a gift but she’d had two bleeds since they had last been together and she knew now even without having a midwife telling her that it was not a possibility.
“How am i?” she dared ask “Is there anything wrong”
“No” the young woman smiled “Everything’s fine, are you looking forward to the wedding?”
She shrugged, she didn’t want to tell a stranger the terror that lay in her heart.
“Well everything seems to be in order” she offered.
Maegan nodded numbly.
“Hopefully there will be a baby soon”
“Yes hopefully” she agreed with mixed emotion, never before had she thought she’d fear having a baby but now she feared it greatly. However she didn’t fear it quite as much as she feared not having one at all.