Thursday, December 22, 2016

Chapter 12, Treatment

***WARNING!!! My stories often contain strong language, sensitive issues, and, at times, other content that could be construed as offensive. Beliefs and viewpoints of characters are not necessarily the beliefs and viewpoints the Author holds in true life.***

I was a bundle of nerves as I sat with Robin in Dr. Hughes' office. He held my hand, squeezing it reassuringly. I was grateful for his presence, for I dreaded enduring this alone.

"Mr. and Mrs. McIntyre, the doctor will be in shortly." The brusque voice of the nurse startled me. I gave Robin a weak smile and gulped audibly. 

"On to the slaughter," I whispered, squaring my shoulders in an attempt to be braver than I felt.

"It won't be so bad, sweetheart," Robin said, kissing my cheek.

Dr. Blythe Hughes was a pretty, smiling woman with a kind expression. I shook her hand and arranged my lips into what I hoped was a friendly smile. "Thank you for seeing me right away. My mother said if I mentioned Lenora Landgraab's name, you would agree to see us quickly."

Dr. Hughs' smile widened. "I owe Lenora a lifelong debt. She helped save my life and taught me everything I know about...certain things." She paused before saying the last two words as if pondering a secret she was reluctant to tell.

"We know of your circumstances, Dr. Hughes. Lenora is my aunt and Alina is the daughter of Mathilda Kelly. I'm sure you're familiar with her," Robin said.

The physician's eyes widened, her smile turning into a grin. "Any witch or wizard would have to have lived under a rock if they haven't heard of Mathilda. Of course, I know who you are, now that you've mentioned being Mathilda's daughter." She beckoned us to sit. Although she was still smiling, a look of great concentration came over her face. "Now, why don't you tell me why you're here."

I blushed and looked down at the floor. "I am having difficulty falling pregnant," I whispered and felt tears sting my eyes.

"I see," Dr. Hughes replied. She patted my hand and handed me a wad of tissues. "It happens more frequently than you probably realize. In many cases, a situation can be turned around and a pregnancy is achieved fairly easily. There's no need to be embarrassed or nervous. Let's start from the beginning so I can advise you to the best o my ability."

Haltingly at first, I began expressing my concerns. Dr. Hughes' kindly expression never wavered and with her encouragement, the words came easier. Robin chimed in whenever appropriate and squeezed my hand when I became tearful. Dr. Hughes listened intently, let me ramble, and nodded in the right places.

"Well, the first thing we need to do is give you both an examination. That will often give us a clue as to the next steps we'll need to take," Dr. Hughes said.

Robin stayed with me as I was poked and prodded. I nearly succumbed to embarrassment when the doctor wanted to examine my most private area. "I'll tell you everything I'm doing as I do it," she said, giving me an encouraging smile. "I promise to be very gentle."

Robin endured similar treatment, his cheeks filling with color when he was asked to give a sperm sample. However, he grinned wickedly at me and winked when we were directed toward a room that was, apparently, specifically designed for such things. "Take all the time you need," Dr. Hughes smiled. "There will be a button on the wall to push when you're through. I'll look things over and we'll discuss our options at your next appointment."

I was unsure of what to expect from this aforementioned room, but what I saw exceeded my wildest imaginings. I squawked indignantly, buried my burning face against Robin's chest, and closed my eyes. "Robin, it is indecent! I could never..." There were magazines with scantily clad women, movie discs with men and women in extremely compromising positions, and other things I could not bring myself to view.

To my chagrin, a barrage of laughter escaped Robin. I felt his chest heave with mirth and when I looked up at him, he had that wicked, sexy grin I loved so much. His eyes danced as he attempted to get his laughter under control. "All of this is to get us in the mood," he explains.

"In the mood for what? I mean, if we're to have Bedroom Time, think you we should have it in our own bedroom? This is..." My cheeks flamed again and I groaned helplessly.

He leaned down to brush his lips against mine. "There will be plenty of Bedroom Time for us, Alina, my love. For now, in this room, I'll need to..." He grinned sheepishly and held out some kind of plastic dish for my inspection. "I must ejaculate into this rather than inside you so Dr. Hughes can see if the...uh...swimmers are swimming okay."

I shook my head, then allowed it to flop against his chest. There are things I know I will never understand about this time I now live in. "Do we need to do anything with...?" I made a vague gesture toward the magazines, discs, and other unmentionable items.

Robin tilted my face up so he could look at me. "I think we'll do just fine without the visual aids." His voice took on that husky tone he always had before Bedroom Time. The flame of desire burned in his eyes as he studied me intently. Then, his lips were on mine and I lost track of everything.

The next few months were unlike anything I had ever experienced. I always thought that falling pregnant was so easy and natural, that it came from love if one is truly fortunate. For Robin and me, there was no longer any romance and intrigue to it. Even the act itself was cold and regimented. I endured artificial insemination, numerous examinations, tests, morning temperature taking, and even hormone boosting injections. Not only was I feeling highly depressed but more times than not, I became terribly ill from the hormone injections. We were tense as we waited to see if any of the treatments worked. When they didn't and it became clear, month after month, that I was not pregnant, I dissolved into uncontrollable fits of tears. Robin would always hold me during those awful times, comforting me as best he could. However, in many ways, I began to feel him pull away from me. I reckon I, too, retreated. We slept in the same bed but we no longer snuggled at night. I lay curled in a ball on my own side, my back to Robin. I ceased to smile easily, and there were times I could barely look into his eyes. Regardless of what he'd always said, I knew I'd failed him in the worst possible way a wife could fail her husband; I could not give my Robin a son.

Robin began staying at work late, and I, too, threw all my energies into my job. To me, that was the only thing I had left that I could do well at. As Robin's late work nights increased in frequency, the fear of him taking a mistress took root. The very idea of him being with anyone other than me made me feel nauseous. However, I could not blame him if he did. I was a sub par wife, and perhaps a mistress could give him the son he deserved and needed. Even so, the thought of it hurt more than I could say.

One rainy night, I was feeling even more out of sorts than usual. I was alone when I discovered that pregnancy had evaded me yet again. Surprisingly, I did not weep this time. Mayhap I had no more tears to shed right now. Instead, I heaved a defeated sigh and let the horrible sense of resignation engulf me. There would never be any sons produced from me; motherhood would not be in my future. I was barren and I would have to live with that.

During the fertility treatments, I was advised not to drink. But, what did it matter now? It was over and I desperately needed to drown my sorrows. Robin was out doing Ariadne-knew-what and I was home. I was alone.

I riffled through the bar and found a full bottle of Jameson whiskey. I preferred wine but liked a good shot of harder liquor now and again. I loaded a cocktail glass with ice and poured a generous measure of whiskey over it. "Here's to Alina McInyre and her barren womb," I muttered, lifting the glass in a mock toast. "May she always suffer in Hell." I swallowed a large mouthful, sighing and wincing slightly as I felt the burn make its way to my stomach.

Author's Note: I used Cottonwood Medical Center by Martine for the doctor's office and finagled things around a little to set up what I needed for this chapter.

Blythe Hughes made a couple of appearances in another of my stories, "Forever in Time." We will be seeing more of her in this story as well as "Forever in Time." You can find the link for "Forever in Time" in the sidebar of this blog in the "Other Works By Me" section.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Chapter 11, The Birds and the Bees

***WARNING!!! My stories often contain strong language, sensitive issues, and, at times, other content that could be construed as offensive. Beliefs and viewpoints of characters are not necessarily the beliefs and viewpoints the Author holds in true life.***

Being married to my Robin was like living in a wonderful, never-ending dream. Robin frequently bought me little gifts and took me out on the town when our work schedules permitted. Family often came for visits. Work was going very well for both Robin and me; Robin wanted to be the Police Chief for Dragon Valley and I wanted to be Executive Chef at the restaurant. The only glitch in our lives was that I still hadn't fallen pregnant within the first year of our marriage.

My eyes welled with tears at the first sign of blood that signaled the beginning of my monthly courses. The pain of the all-too familiar cramping paled in comparison to the ache that was growing in my heart day by day. I was starting to once again feel like the bumbling, inept girl I'd been upon traveling to this modern time.

The very thought of failing my Robin, of disappointing him, brought on a freshet of uncontrollable weeping. It was my duty to present a son to my husband and I had yet to follow through. He had always dome so much for me, given me everything, even saved my life, and I felt woefully inadequate for not yet being able to give him the son he so deserved and needed to carry on his family name.

I must have looked a sight when my Robin arrived home and found me sobbing on the floor. Wordlessly, he pulled me into his arms and I wailed all the more. "Well now, it can't be all that bad." His breath gently blew my hair as he murmured softly into my ear.

"," was all I could utter through my strangled cries.

"Ah," he said, his strong hands caressing my hair and back. "Starting your period has never made you cry before, Alina. Are the cramps hurting you badly this time?"

"No. It's just...I thought for sure that..."

"Ah, I see," Robin said, then breathed out a long sigh.

"I beseech thy pardon, Milord, for I have failed thee. I--" I couldn't continue because another sob stifled me and shook my entire frame.

Robin tilted my chin up so I had no choice but to look at him. "There is nothing to apologize for, Alina. There is nothing to forgive and you did not fail me! Things are different nowadays and women aren't made to feel guilty when a baby doesn't come right away. Sometimes it takes longer for some people, that's all. Like I said before, we'll just keep trying and have fun while doing so. It'll happen in time, I'm sure, but for now, I'm happy with how things are."

"But Robin, you need a son to carry on your name and as your wife--"

"Listen to me, sweetheart. You are everything and more that I could ever want in a wife. You are everything to me, Alina, always remember that. Even if we don't have a child or if we do, the gender doesn't matter. I'm okay with whatever happens. Sure, it would be nice but if we don't, I'm content with that. I have you and that's all that matters." In between his words, he kissed away my tears. When more threatened to come, his arms held me fast. "I mean it, Alina. As long as I have you, everything will be all right."

"I do love you so, my Robin. I-I just never want to be a disappointment or disgrace to you." I touched his cheek, marveling at how blessed I was to have such a kind, generous man as my husband.

"You could never be a disappointment or disgrace, and I love you with all my heart, Alina mine." He put the aforementioned love into a searing kiss and my arms instinctively wrapped around him.

We stayed like that for many long moments until I broke the silence with my next words. "I just wish it wasn't taking so long for me to fall pregnant. My mother managed quite nicely, so I never expected to be barren."

"Sometimes it's just harder for some people. Nowadays, there are ways of finding out if there's a problem that's preventing a pregnancy. There are tests that can be done and treatments for problems we didn't know about even twenty years ago," Robin said.

"Then, I should undergo those tests," I said, squaring my shoulders in an attempt to look braver than I felt. I had no idea what I would endure or if it would hurt, but if they were needed for me to give Robin a son, I would gladly do it.

"If that's what you want, we'll ask your mother to put us in touch with a good fertility specialist. Knowing your mother, she'll know exactly who we should see," said Robin.

"We?" I asked, puzzled.

"Of course. In most cases, both the man and woman undergo testing to try to pinpoint a problem."

"But..." I gaped at him. "I don't understand. Why would you need to have testing when it's the woman who bears the children and gives sons if she is blessed enough."

To my chagrin, Robin threw his head back and roared with laughter. It was the last thing I expected to see and I was vexed that he'd laugh at my confusion. I reckon this must have showed, for he pulled me to him once again and buried his face in my hair. "I'm sorry, love. I wasn't laughing at you per se. It was just--" He trailed off and chuckled. "I guess I never imagined having to explain the birds and bees to my wife but looks like there's no way around it."

"Birds and bees?" I frowned in puzzlement.

"It's just slang, sweetheart. Come here, Alina. There's something I think you need to see." He guided me to the sofa and gave me a gentle push to make me sit. Then, he riffled through the bookshelves and selected a gigantic tome.

"Anatomy and Phys...ah...what is that tome, Robin?"

"Anatomy and Physiology. It's a medical book that explains all about the human body. Now then, let's see what I can find." Robin got comfortable beside me and whistled softly as he turned page after page of the tome. Upon finding what he wanted, he sent a lopsided grin my way. He scooted the tome over so I could easily see the text and illustrations. As he started speaking, I came to understand that I was given a gift that nobody in my original time had ever known about. It wasn't the woman who was responsible for a child's gender but the man! Goosebumps erupted on my arms and shivers ran down my spine. According to Robin's modern day knowledge and this magnificent tome, a woman isn't necessarily to blame when a child does not come. Things can go wrong with both males and females.

"This is a lot to digest, I know, but we can talk about it again whenever you need to," Robin said, closing the book. "Like I said, things are different and people are more enlightened and educated." He gave me that lopsided grin that always made me go weak in the knees.

"I am astounded," I said. "I had no idea."

"Well, now you do." My Robin gave me a loving kiss. "No more talk of disappointing me, okay?"

"Okay," I said, smiling for the first time that day.

We phoned Mother the next night and approached her about my worries. "Robin tells me not to fret and the knowledge he shared with me is astonishing. Still, I worry that I am, indeed, barren," I confessed.

"Oh, darling, I wouldn't worry too much. It's only been a year since you and Robin were married and you began actively trying for a baby. Sometimes these things just take time."

"That's what Robin said, but there are tests," I replied.

"I don't think it's time for that yet. Perhaps you're trying too hard. Stress is a factor sometimes when it comes to conception. Even so, I know how you are when you get a bee in your bonnet."

"Some things never change, even after hundreds of years," I sighed.

Mother's chuckle brought a grin to my lips; she always had a way of cheering me up. The sound of pages turning filled the silence, and I waited for her to resume our conversation. When she came back, she instructed me to write down a telephone number. "Ask to see Dr. Blythe Hughes. Drop Lenora's name and you'll get in immediately."

Robin and I decided to wait a little longer before calling Dr. Hughes. Three more months passed and still no pregnancy.

"I want us to call Dr. Hughes, Robin" I said forlornly as I sank into my chair.

Robin rested his hand on my sagging shoulder, then leaned down to kiss the top of my head. "All right, sweetheart. We'll call first thing in the morning."

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Chapter 10, A Crazy Little Thing Called Newlyweds

***WARNING!!! My stories often contain strong language, sensitive issues, and, at times, other content that could be construed as offensive. Beliefs and viewpoints of characters are not necessarily the beliefs and viewpoints the Author holds in true life.***

I'm also putting a PG-13 warning in this chapter due to mild sexual references.


Our honeymoon in Sunlit Tides was magical, and Sunlit Tides was beautiful. I cold imagine that this must be what paradise is like. Our days were full with sightseeing and spending time at the beach; our nights were romantic and passionate with Robin showing me his artistic talents as a lover. Life couldn't get much better than this.

I felt a litttle melancholy when it was time to leave for home. "Where did teh time go, Robin? I wish we could stay here forever," I said as I reluctantly packed our suitcases.

"I know, love. This has been a wonderful time for us, but it's time to go home and settle in as an old married couple." He waggled his eyebrows at me and I grinned. "We both have to return to work and we still have to finish moving the rest of your stuff to my...uh...our place."

"Our place. I love the sound of that," I said dreamily.

"Well, get used to it because that's how it's going to be for the rest of our lives," Robin said, putting an arm around my waist and kissing my cheek.

And so, we left our magical paradise and returned home to Dragon Valley the next day. Robin and I still had a couple days' respite before we were to return to our jobs, but there was still lots to do. Lenora and Tyrone came to help us move my things from my little house to Robin's. Although Robin and I could have managed since I didn't have much to bring, I welcomed the opportunity to spend time with them.

Robin's home was exquisite. It was clear that he enjoyed fine things. I was almost afraid to breathe for fear of displacing anything, but as always, Robin somehow knew what I was thinking. He put a strong arm around my waist and gave me a gentle jostle. "If there's anything you want to change up, you can. Remember, this place is yours as much as mine now. With you here, this is a home and no longer just a house."

"Och, Robin! I have never seen such a fine home," I said, smiling up at him and feeling my heart swell with love. "I can scarcely believe I'll be spending the rest of my days here with you."

"Well, believe it because that's how it is. This is only the beginning." He kissed me, then grinned. "I want nothing more right now than to take you up to bed and make passionate love to my wife, but we'd better finish arranging this place or neither of us will ever find anything."

It felt as if I were walking on air as we got everything in its place. I was making a home with my Robin, and I was no longer a peasant woman. With four sets of hands at work, it didn't take nearly as long as it might have. Even so, we were exhausted by the time we finished. Robin and I offered Lenora and Tyrone the guest room to stay in overnight, but Tyrone said they needed to return home. When Lenora winked at me, I felt warm color rise to my cheeks and I understood the real reason they were in a hurry to be off; they wanted to give Robin and me time alone to settle in together in every way possible.

Newly married life with my Robin was even more blissful than I ever dreamed it could be. True to Robin's word, he gave me the leeway to put my own touches to our home. I had an area set up for my alchemy station and easel, and Robin made sure I had top of the line cooking appliances. At first, I was overwhelmed by all the buttons and switches. Naturally, I'd been working in a modern professional kitchen for a while now, but Robin insisted that the appliances we had in our home were the absolute best. "It was much easier when I had only a stone oven and my powers to lay a fire for food preparation," I confessed sheepishly.

Robin just laughed and shook his head before guiding me around the kitchen to show me how everything worked. "I promise you, Alina, my love, once you get used to everything here, you'll see how much easier it is than any stone oven could ever be. You see, all you have to do is just push a button or turn a dial." He demonstrated the food processor. "See? Much easier than chopping by hand. Just mind the blades when it's time to clean it up. They're viciously sharp and will cut you to the bone if mishandled."

"My coworkers will be green with envy," I said on a laugh. "Och! I shall be able to prepare food fit for a queen now."

"In that case, we'll have to have the family in to visit often but not so often that it cuts into our Bedroom Time." He leaned down to flick his tongue over the sensitive spot below my earlobe, making tingles of pleasure course through me.

"Aye! Bedroom Time is top priority," I replied, feeling very brazen indeed. With that, Robin swooped me up into his arms, carried me upstairs to our suite, and proceeded to teach me just hoe creative Bedroom Time could be.

Robin and I wanted to start our family right away, and I yearned for the day that I could present my loving husband with a son. I was certain that I would be with child very soon but was discouraged when my woman's curse came next. Many women in my village during my own time were always bearing children. When one was born, another one was soon on the way. I did not understand why it wasn't happening to me.

"It doesn't always happen on the first try, darling," Robin said, unconcerned. "We'll just have to keep trying until it does. You have to admit that it's certainly fun to practice." I couldn't help but laugh when he leered at me as though he wished to gobble me up.

"I just cannot help but feel I am letting you down," I said on a sigh. "It is a woman's place to conceive healthy sons for her husband right away."

"Never!" Robin said, enfolding me in his arms. "Somdtimes the body has other plans, sweetheart. It doesn't always come as easy for some as it does for others, and I'll love our children no matter what gender they are. No worries, love. It'll happen when it's supposed to. Now, give us a smile."

I did as he asked, looking into his beautiful eyes and seeing not but love for me. "We will just have to have Bedroom Timie more often."

"I won't argue with that," Robin grinned.

As discussed, we often had family in for visits and dinner. I was so pleased when Aurora and Silvan arrived on a Tuesday night. Aurora's singing career was blossoming, as was her relationship with her fairy prince. I could see how much Aurora loved him by the way she looked at him. I could also tell that Silvan was over the moon for her although Aurora confided to me earlier on the phone that he hadn't yet declared his love for her. I was certain that would come anon.

"I'm so pleased you could come," I said, hugging my honorary niece tight. "I wondered if you ever would since you've been so busy with your concerts."

"It's nice to catch a little break when I can." Aurora smiled at me. "I love it but I'm always exhausted after a show."

"It's because she puts her all into it, including her powers," Silvan said, pride in his voice. "The instant Aurora opens her mouth, I'm a goner."

"Ah, flattery! Isn't it lovely?" Aurora said, tossing her golden head.

I laughed but it turned into a giggle when Silvan lifted my hand to his lips and kissed it. "A pleasure to finally meet ye, lass. Aurora has told me so much about ye. I regret missing your wedding but trust that ye had a spectacular day."

"I'm so happy to finally meet you and so pleased that you could come tonight. There is no need for apologies. I understand that things happen. I did have a spectacular day, in fact." I beamed at my Robin.

I suggested relaxing in the sitting room and told Aurora and Silvan to make themselves at home. I made a fire, then we settled in for a nice chat. The more Robin and I talked with Silvan, the more we liked him. He was a very handsome man, especially when his eyes twinkled. It was no wonder Aurora was head over heels in love with him. A moment later, however, his eyes weren't twinkling. They were grim as they searched me; I squirmed under the scrutiny.

"Is anything wrong?" I asked.

"I was going to ask ye the same thing. Alina, lass, are ye feeling unwell?" Silvan asked, clearly concerned for some reason.

"I feel very well," I replied, puzzled. "Why do you ask?"

Silvan didn't speak for a long moment. His brow furrowed as those penetrating eyes studied me intently. He came to me, then gently touched my forehead. "No fever and ye look the picture of perfect health. Still...your aura..."

"My...aura?" I asked, rubbing the back of my neck. "I do not understand."

Silvan moved away to return to his seat next to Aurora. "Och, lass, forgive me. I dinnae mean to frighten ye. Fairies can see auras and there is a lot to be told by a person's aura. Yours in mainly the color of yellow, which symbolizes warmth and kindness. I can also tell that ye have brooding tendencies from time to time and are still uncertain about things in this time. However, there is a disturbance...a disturbance that I cannae put my finger on."

Robin cleared his throat. "Perhaps we should talk about this later, Silvan. Alina looks fine to me and this really isn't the time--"

I shook my head in protest. "Nay, Robin. It's all right. I know not much of fairies and would like to hear more." I turned back to Silvan. "Mayhap my journey forward in time or my trip to the spirit world has caused the disturbance you say you see. I beseech thee, tell me more of this aura, for I know not of what thou speakest of. I scarce can understand how thou canst discern such truth about me from something I cannot see." I realized I'd reverted to speaking the way it was done in my time, which was something I always found myself doing when I was upset or flustered. "I shall fetch some wine, and we shall speak of this as we partake."

Instead of me carrying glasses of wine from the kitchen to the sitting room, we decided to make our way to the dining room to make it easier. With wine glasses in hand, Silvan began. "Every living thing has an aura, which is a sort of glow surrounding them. The glow has one main color with other colors passing through it somehow. The pattern to how the secondary colors pass through the primary one depends on many things, one of the main factors being how the person, or creature, is feeling. Let's stick with people for now. For example, if a person is content and serene, the secondary colors will swirl through the primary color in a slow, relaxed fashion. The aura will expand and people or creatures in close proximity may or may not be affected. If someone is feeling guarded, the aura will enclose more protectively around them in a sort of protective manner. When angry, sparks may erupt from the aura and depending on the reason for the anger or the amount of anger a person is feeling, it could have negative effects on people or creatures in close proximity. Reading auras is something that is second nature to fairies. We can see the nuances and glean much information from not only the aura but how the aura is behaving."

"Fascinating!" I said, entranced by his words. "Can anyone other than fairies read auras?"

"In rare occurrences. It happens to be one of Aurora's gifts, but honestly, she is the first non-fairy I have ever known who has this ability," Silvan said.

"I always knew I was a freak," Aurora said, bringing some levity to the conversation.

We all chuckled and Robin ruffled his cousin's hair. "I've been telling you that for years, dear cousin," he teased her.

Aurora laughed and poked him in the ribs. Then, the conversation turned serious. Aurora spoke again. "Ye can trust Silvan to know what he's talking about. What better source of information than a fairy prince?"

"So, you speak of a disturbance." Robin directed his statement to Silvan. "You asked her if she was feeling unwell. Is there reason to be concerned? If something is amiss with Alina, I need to know this so she can get the help and attention she needs."

"DInnae fash, Robin. Alina is in no physical danger. As I said, she is the picture of health. Perhaps the disturbance is due to the journey through time or to the spirit world after her alchemy accident. I'm certain it will iron itself out in time. I was just concerned. Please forgive me for causing ye worry," Silvan said.

"No forgiveness needed. It's sweet of you to be concerned, but it's fine, I am," I said. "In fact, I'm the happiest I have ever been."

"That is what counts then. May I ask a favor nonetheless?" said Silvan.

"Of course," I said.

"Ye will let me know if anything changes. If ye feel unwell, will ye contact me?"

It was a strange request and I blinked in surprise. "Why? My mother sees to me and I am on Robin's health insurance plan. There are qualified physicians to look after me should the need arise."

"I realize that, lass. I, too, am a trained and licensed physician although I do not own a practice at this time. Someone who has been around as long as I have has plenty of time to be more than proficient in a number of fields. Anyway, I'm not asking this favor of ye in order to necessarily treat ye as a physician would. I am asking because of the disturbance I see in your aura. Should anything change, I'd like the opportunity to study your aura again and help if I can, for I have never seen such a thing in someone's aura. I confess I am curious."

"Och, well, no harm in that," I smiled. "You have me curious as well."

"Well, try not to think about it and just carry on as ye normally would," SIlvan said reassuringly. "Now, let us speak of other more pleasant things, shall we?"

I was glad to oblige. I wanted this to be a nice evening with everyone relaxing and enjoying themselves. I put the finishing touches on dinner, and soon, we were talking again like old friends."So, Silvan...or shall I address you as Prince Silvan or by some other title?"

Silvan chuckled and shook his head. "It's just Silvan, lass. No titles when we are among friends."

I smiled and nodded. "Do you know of my mother? You say you have been around a very long time so I thought that maybe..."

"Of course I ken your mother and have been in her company a number of times. Mathilda is the most powerful witch in the multiverse and has been referred to as a goddess in her own right. I cannae say we've been friends, per se, but now, I see her quite often since Aurora and I are together. She is not one to be crossed, I will say that."

"Amen to that," Aurora laughed. "I'll never forget the time she found out about our plans to go to the spirit world when Ma was missing. Chris made it but she brought him back to Earth none too gently."

"She had a right to be more than cross about that," I said sternly. "That was far too dangerous of a thing to even consider at that age."

"I know, but I felt it was necessary. I was sorry about not considering all the consequences but in a way, I'm not sorry we did it. Desperate times sometimes call for desperate measures. I reckon I'd spearhead it again if I had to do it over," Aurora said.

Silvan leaned over to tap Aurora's nose and grinned devilishly at her. "And here, I thought I was the wild one."

"Me? Wild? I was an innocent little flower," she said, her eyes dancing.

"Spoken by the jailbird herself," Silvan quipped.

"Screw ye, McBeth." Aurora laughed and gave Silvan a playful punch on the arm.

"Alina knows what it's like to be a jailbird, don't you, Alina?" Robin said, a teasing smirk on his lips.

"And to think, all I did was try to help. I didn't realize that performing street art inside my neighbor's house was considered vandalism," I said, chortling at the memory. "I believed I'd be losing my head for certain soon after."

It was a grand evening for all of us. I found that I liked Silvan very much and could see that he made Aurora happy. I knew for certain that the next wedding we'd be celebrating would be Aurora's. She did catch my wedding bouquet, after all.

The time passed quickly and we said our goodbyes. I hugged Auora tightly and promised that Robin and I would attend her next concert. It had been a while since I'd seen her perform, so I was looking forward to seeing her next show. I was taken by surprise when Silvan kissed my cheek and pulled me in for a hug. "Thank ye, Alina lass. I had a most enjoyable evening and ye are a verra generous hostess."

I beamed at the praise, for I did so love to entertain. "We must do it again soon."

I tidied everything up after Aurora and Silvan left, then sat beside my Robin on the sofa. "I quite like being lady of the manor," I said on a yawn as I snuggled against Robin's side.

"You are the most beautiful lady of any manor, my Alina. But right now, you look like an exhausted lady of the manor. I think some sleep is in order."

"Not quite yet." I gave him a come hither look. "Bedroom Time first."

"Yes sir, Milady," he said.

I giggled and followed Robin upstairs, hoping with all my heart that Bedroom Time this night would result in the conception of a son for my Robin.

Author's Note - As with other chapters, this one contains a crossover with characters from one of my other stories. Lenora, Tyrone, Aurora, and Silvan are from my story "Forever in Time: An Immortal Legacy." Generation 1 features Lenora and Tyrone with Generation 2 belonging to Aurora and Silvan. You can read this story by clicking on this link.

"Forever in Time"