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Maternal Instincts (attn: Aran)


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OOC: Just a note for a reader who might get confused. This RP happens many years in the future from the fresh Raising to the TG rank due to some forcing reasons.




Thick velvet curtains were pulled closed to not disturb the sleep of the pregnant woman on the bed. No light filtered through and it was hard to tell what time of the day it was. Sahra woke up to a disturbing feeling of another presence in the room even before a soft male voice called her name. She sat up groggily and peered into the darkness to make out the form until she finally recognised the speaker. "Jaz?" She had asked to be told right away when Sana returned home from Kandor so excitement bubbled in her. "He is back. I need to get up", she uttered with hopeful certainty and begun push aside the blanket covering her and the other one she held curled against her.


The other Tower Guard moved to part the curtains and Sahra shielded her one remaining eye from the sudden bright light. "Not him but Aran." There was a stab of disappointment but it settled quickly as she thought of her quirky grand mentor. She had asked to be notified of his come back too. As the advanced stage of pregancy prevented her from doing pretty much everything she loved, like training, she had had ample of time to fret and worry about how Aran was doing in Cairhien, especially after the news of the severity of the rebellion came. "Great. I have missed him too. And it is time to rise and shine", she declared as she stood up stark naked.


Jaz didn't look away but remarked with amusement "You sure have a penchant for nudity." That earned him a sharp look before she snatched a blanket and wrapped it around her. This was her bloody room and she had right to be however she liked at her home. Besides, he knew about her insecurities related to her looks after her scarring. He had a bad burn on his face so he knew how it was to deal with it and he had helped her to come on terms with it. Things had been alright for last few years until the pregnancy and the issues with Sana. The one part of her that was still beautiful beside her hair had become something unfamiliar and out of her control and she couldn't train anymore. Sometimes she wondered why she had wanted it so much but such doubts were always abandoned when the baby moved. Nature had arranged it so that you just couldn't but love the unborn little punk. She laid a gentle hand on the swell of her stomach before glaring at Jaz.


"If you don't like it, there's the door", she snapped tersely. She had started sleeping in Sana's shirt but they had gotten too small to her aggravation. She turned her back on him, pulled briskly a pair of breeches and a loose tunica on her and dropped the blanket off her shoulders. "That is not how I meant it and you know it", Jaz sighed. She merely shrugged and patted his cheek as she passed him. "I'm going to go see Aran now."


"Just be careful, he is pretty drunk."


Sahra gave him a withering look and snorted. "I have seen him drunk more often than you can imagine and I am a big girl who can handle herself and Aran."


"Not this kind of drunk", Jaz said dead serious. "Something bad happened to him and he isn't talking to anyone."


That stopped her on her track and she begun to pester him for details as he joined her side and they made their way to Aran's room. He didn't know anything for sure but his guess was that Aran had lost some close friends in Cairhien in the rebellion. It took some persuading to get rid of Jaz but finally Sahra stood alone behind Aran's door. She didn't expect him to be talking to her more than anyone. In fact, she had made the mistake of pressing him a few times over the years and the results of prying hadn't been something she wanted to repeat. No, he just needed someone and she could possibly start repaying the support he had always given her.


She knocked the door and stepped in without waiting an answer. Sahra had been prepared to meet quite a sight but still she was taken aback. Aran had always taken good care of himself but now he looked like a bum. He was unshaven and likely stunk and there was no sign of the jolly drinking buddy in the way he stared into emptiness and took an occasional swig from his magnum bottle. "Aran", she called his name but got no reaction that he had even heard her. She didn't let it to deter her and she walked... fair enough, waddled, closer. She sat beside him on the bed. "I want to be there for you if you'll just let me. In fact, I am not going anywhere." Cautiously, she reached over and laid her hand on his shoulder.


Sahra Covenry

Tower Guard

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Staring at the window and at the same time not, Aran prefered his current state to the alternative.  His head diluted with alcohol, it helped bring the different voices, thoughts, memories and other myriad shards of existance to a minimum, life simplified with a bottle.  All he needed was the fortitude necessary to keep going, to keep going and he wouldn't need to deal with the other things that were on his mind every morning until he'd had enough to dull them from his mind.  Things that he naturally shied away from even now.


Taking another sip from his magnum, Aran ignored the burn as something other than wine washed down his throat as easily as it washed away substantially coherent thought.  It had no taste, at least one that he was capable of noticing anymore after having been drinking for the past few hours.  In fact, he couldn't really sense or feel much of anything, it was a pleasing numbness that he had sought and found.


Running a hand through his hair, Aran clenched his fist around a particular tuft as he pulled at it.  Not enough to rip it free, but enough to register a dull pain, enough to know that he was still there.  It was enough to let him know that he hadn't had enough to drink, when he couldn't feel his hair, then he would be well and truly beyond any need to bother further, at least for a time.


The door.


While his senses were dulled, he wasn't quite far gone enough to not notice the knock at the door.  On the otherhand, his care to answer it, or even have taken the trouble to lock it, were a different matter entirely.  Ignoring the woman, Sahra, he also ignored the fact that she closed the door and was on the inside of it rather than the outside, approaching him.  By any luck, she would simply turn away and go, therefore not necessitating the need for him to actually spe-


"Get your hand off me."


Quiet, but the vehemence resulted in the quick removal of the offending hand from his shoulder.  An unwelcome touch, much like the unwelcome attention that he was being shown by her, something that he didn't want, didn't need.  He did not require sympathy, or pity, simply to be left alone to his drink and nothing more.  He did not need to speak to anyone, nothing to be said.


"Go away."




Tower Guard

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A reaction to her touch had been expected but nothing of this kind. The tone alone was enough to get Sahra whip her hand back. Aran had never spoken to her like this before. He has been disgusted with her in the past but this intense displeasure was frightening. But he wasn't himself and she was no coward who abandoned a friend in need that easily. "Alright alright, no touching. No talking either, I guess. But I am staying."


There had to be something, anything that she could do. She wondered when he had last eaten. He didn't seem to be caring much about his own well being or anything really, except the bottle. She tried to not stare at him and felt more useless than ever in her life. The feeling was only increased when he sprung to his feet and simply walked out of the door.


Calling him to stop would be futile so she didn't even bother. Instead she stood up with some effort, disgusted at the loss of agility. The baby obviously didn't like it and protested by flailing with both, its little arms and legs. This one would make a fine little soldier some day with a nasty temper. The bruising of Sahra's organs and sides forced her to stop for a moment to catch her breath and by the time she made it to the door, Aran wasn't at sight in the corridor anymore.


Persistently she duck-walked to the Yard and was in time to glimpse his form walking through the gate and heading into the city. She might find him, as he likely would go to some tavern and drink himself under table there, but she would try again the next day. She was becoming more and more aware of her voracious hunger. She ate like a cow and likely looked like one too but still she craved food every few hours. The baby was growing which was good but she was afraid that if it got any larger, it wouldn't fit out, not without ripping her. Of course there would be Yellow Sisters to Heal her afterwards but Sahra didn't want to think the pain that came before it. She had been to battles and been scared before them but it was nothing when compared to the fear that gripped her when she thought of the upcoming birth. No, she wouldn't think it now. Everything would be well and Sana would be with them and the baby needed food now. They both did.


With a resigned sigh, Sahra headed to the dining hall. Maybe Jaz would be there. She really wanted to apologize her grumpy behaviour. Or then Conor as she could use some cheering up.


Sahra Covenry

Tower Guard

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