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Questionable News

Writers: Aaron, Heather
Date Posted: 28th March 2024

Characters: Toman, Veslera, Toman
Description: Veslera shares questionable news with Toman
Location: Leeward Lagoon Hold
Date: month 7, day 17 of Turn 11
Notes: Introducing Leeward Lagoon Minor Hold!

Three months. Three long months keeping this secret. Veslera studied
her reflection calmly as she sat at her vanity, brushing out her
lustrous blonde hair. **It's time to tell Toman,** she thought as she
smoothed her hair back, twisted it into a severe bun, and pinned it
into place.

It wasn't that she doubted her husband's support, no, she knew he
would be supportive, he always was... but sometimes that made the
miscarriages more difficult. It was like failing him.

**This is nonsense, Veslera,** she scolded herself as she smoothed
some white cream over her face and then began applying her eye
makeup. **You have given him _seven_ children, six more than that
good-for-nothing first wife of his.**

The fact that she'd had three miscarriages over the last seven Turns
did not mar the beautiful family they'd made but... They had taken an
emotional toll on her. She loved her children and losing three of them
that way...

Powdering her nose and then tossing the powder puff down into the
dish, she spritzed on the perfume that Toman liked and then left her
dressing room. She knew at this time of the morning her husband would
be in his office, and hopefully, she would catch him there alone.

Toman looked up from his work and smiled brightly when he saw who it
was. He shoved aside his paperwork and stood just in time to smell the
perfume. He grinned, wondering what the special occasion was. It was
not their anniversary... He had not managed to forget her birthday or
any of the children's...

Was it _his_ birthday? No... Then what?

"Good morning, Darling," he said. "You look... stunning. Absolutely
stunning. I feel a touch underdressed." Or overdressed. And stunned.
"What have I forgotten?"

Closing his office door, and sliding the lock into place, Veslera came
around his desk and perched on the edge of it, crossing her legs as
she did. "You have forgotten nothing," she assured him, lips twitching
in amusement. For a man, he was surprisingly good at remembering
important dates, she thought. "I've got some news," she said, trailing
off, marveling that she felt nervous, even after all these Turns

Toman smiled and nodded. As she seemed a touch in need of reassurance,
he took her hands, though he could not imagine what the news could be.
It never occurred to him that it might be something bad, not when she
had dressed up for it.

"What is it?"

"I'm pregnant," she said the words softly. Her eyes raised to meet
his. "About three months along."

"Darling, that's wonderful!" Toman smiled brightly. It _was_
wonderful. But it was also worrying, and a tinge of that worry showed
in his eyes. At her age, having a baby could be fraught with
complications, and they had already lost three.

"How do you feel? Do you need anything? Have you spoken to the Healers?"

"I feel fine. One of the healers knows. I swore him to secrecy. I
wanted to wait as long as possible.... in case..." she shrugged a
little as she trailed off. "The problem is, I couldn't wait any
longer. I'm already hiding a little bump under this skirt." Her hand
went automatically to her stomach. It was true that after the first
child showing happened much sooner, and on her slender frame it was
easy to notice.

"Oh..." Toman embraced his wife and laid his chin gently atop her
head. "I wish you'd have told me sooner. I would never want you to go
through that alone just to spare my feelings." He kissed her hair.

Veslera took comfort in her husband's embrace. "Saying it out loud
makes it real." As if keeping it a secret had somehow protected her
own heart against sadness.

"I love you," said Toman. "Now that it's real... what are you thinking
for names?" They had come up with so many already, but he could not
deny that he did enjoy it.

A part of her was afraid to even think about names. "I've always liked
Vareman, for a boy, and Tesllae for a girl."

"Perfect." Toman smiled. Veslera had always been so good at choosing
names. "How would you like to have brunch?"

"Y...e...s?" she said slowly, a weak smile crossing her face. "I've
been so nauseated lately, but I'm also starving."

"What does the baby like?" It seemed like each of their pregnancies
were slightly different " in many ways, but especially in what foods
Veslera craved and which made her consider swearing off eating for the
rest of forever. "Anything at all."

Veslera considered it. "Fruit sounds okay... oh, and maybe some really
fresh, crunchy vegetables... And water? Lots of cold water."

"I think we can make that happen." Toman smiled and kissed Veslera
again. "Would you like to eat on the terrace?"

"That would be perfect," Veslera said with relief. Out on the terrace
meant fresh air and no possibility of the nauseating smell of other
peoples' foods wafting around.

Before too long, Toman had arranged for the meal, and the two were
seated on the breezy terrace with heaping bowls of sliced fruit, raw
vegetables, a few dipping sauces, tall glasses of chilled water, and
an extra pitcher beside.

Toman pulled out Veslera's chair for her and then joined her at the
table once she was seated.

"How goes business?" Veslera asked as she seated herself. "Has
Tomendre returned from his trip with Tomesh?"

"They're due back today, actually! Tomesh sent Fisher this morning to
say they were still on schedule," said Toman. Fisher was Tomesh's
aptly-named brown firelizard, who was very eager to deliver messages
when it meant he would be rewarded with his favorite snack.

"We have another shipment of dye for the Weavers planned to go out
today, and Gallien is expecting a new journeyman technician from the
mainland to help with training for all the youths who apprenticed
after they helped with repairs from the hurricane last Turn... Let's
see, what else..." Toman tapped his chin as he pondered.

Veslera barely heard anything Toman said after the report that
Tomendre was apparently well. She had held a small hope that he'd have
been horribly injured, maimed possibly, or even... dead? Her husband
still had not named an heir, and if his first son by his first wife
ended up as heir... Her hand tightened around her fork. To think that
her own precious son, Toveran, might miss out was unbearable. She
placed a piece of citrus fruit into her mouth.

**I'll just have to take things into my own hands,** she thought.

Last updated on the March 28th 2024

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