“What the Hell is wrong with me?” Flern screamed. “I never said I wanted kids.” She began to breathe. “Let me rephrase that. What the Hellas is wrong with me?”
“Hush, you are doing just fine,” Eir reached up to wipe Flern’s brow.
“Doctor Eir. Just for that, I’m going to get you pregnant, again.”
“Really?” Eir tried not to look excited. “A playmate for Tien?”
“Listen to me. A woman telling another woman she is going to get her pregnant.”
“I know how that can be arranged.”
“Hush you two.” Nanna stood up with baby Tien in her arms. “Isn’t it time for you to push?”
“Dubba, dubba, dubba.” That felt like all Flern could say for a minute. When sense returned, she added. “Really. You know we don’t have to stay in the far east to watch the Jaccar.”
“I like it there,” Eir said. “It is peaceful.”
“Eir doesn’t like being too close to the watchful eye of Aesgard,” Nanna said and sat back down.
“You know, you have fine hips for babies,” Eir said.
“Are you saying I have a fat butt?”
“One more push.”
An hour later, Kined came in, Riah and Goldenwing on his tail. He looked so concerned.
“One would think you were the one sweating,” Flern said.
“He was,” Riah admitted.
“Our daughter?” Kined looked down and touched the precious, baby face, and then the crew came in. Vinnu’s son sat on her hip and chewed a block of wood. Thrud’s daughter wriggled to get down, so she could crawl around and break things. Pinn came last of all. Her baby son, born only a month ago, nursed. Pinn smiled and indeed, she had not stopped smiling since the baby was born.
Flern looked around while Kined held their baby. “Well, we survived.”
“I know,” Thrud said. “Amazed the heck out of me.” Vinnu and Pinn just nodded while Kined spoke.
“Yes, that was a long, dangerous trip. But we made it home and saved our village and brought peace at last to all the people.”
“What are you talking about?” Thrud asked. “We were talking about childbirth.”
“Oh.” Kined froze. He looked once around and handed the baby back to Flern. “Excuse me. I think I am late for being punched in the arm multiple times,” and he left, Goldenwing clinging to his shoulder, just to be safe.
The introduction to Avalon, Season 9, the final season when the travelers get home, wherever home might be… See you tomorrow