Monday, February 05, 2007

It was after the birth but before the naming that Erasmus became the children's Godfather. Galen and Calista were alone in her rooms, anxious and afraid. Erasmus had been a wise and respected professor and mentor of theirs before the Event. He knew of the approaching parturition and, making his way to Calista's rooms, assisted in the birth, for the couple was young and he was the only one of the three who had any experience.

Galen caught the children, his hands shaking with nervousness, as Erasmus directed the boy. The children were healthy and pink. The mother exhausted. After the children nursed and Erasmus saw that all was well, he and Galen took the two children to the baths so Calista might rest. The girl-child, carried by Galen, had faint wisps of pale red hair brushing her head, for the mother's of Calista and the biological father were both from the Emerald Isles. For this, Calista was glad. She fervently hoped the girl-child would grow to resemble Galen, who would take the place as her father. The boy-child, carried by Erasmus, had locks as dark as night covering his crown, as did Calista and the father. Both children had eyes as blue as the deep ocean. Erasmus admired the tiny, beautiful newborn he carried. He hoped the eyes would stay. Already, they seemed to pierce the soul, or perhaps he was just overtaken by the miracle.

When they returned from the baths, Calista appeared a little refreshed. She had cleansed herself in the rooms. The children were placed on the bed with her and Galen joined so to admire their loveliness. Erasmus stood back and observed the new family. They would do well. He bid them farewell, stressing that they should not be anxious or slow to ask for help. With that, he turned and left the young family to their cooing. He passed one of the Brothers on his way to his rooms and turned to watch where he went.

The Brother stopped at Calista's rooms. He knew of the birth. Galen was surely still with her. The Brother did not truly wish to separate them at such a time but, by-the-by, such were the rules and Galen had not yet taken Calista as his wife. He knocked at the door and presently was greeted by Galen. Upon seeing the Brother, Galen's face fell. He well knew the reason for the calling.

"You know the rules, Galen. I know of the circumstance, and it will still not allow," the Brother countered as Galen tried to reason. "You may not remain in Calista's rooms tonight. For it is said in the Articles 'No man shall stay in a woman's room, or she in his, if they not be wed--"

"Unless there may be a chaperone to stay with them," interrupted Erasmus. Galen and the Brother, looked up from their posts at the doorway. Erasmus was farther down the hall, but not so far as to allow the Brother to do his work unhindered. The Brother paused, unsure of how to respond. He seemed to ponder this for a moment.

"And you, Erasmus, are to be the guardian, the chaperone?" The Brother asked, seeming to think this to be in jest. "Would you not be better suited with your books for company?" Yet, Erasmus stood fast.

"If I stay in Calista's room, ever keeping watch on her and Galen, then he is allowed to stay," Erasmus paused, before appealing to the Brother's gentler side. "Surely you would not separate them so soon after the birth of the children?"

The Brother paused to consider this. "Yes, Erasmus, I think you are right. If you will stay here tonight then I shall not remove Galen. Some other Brothers might come and check the rooms tonight, but all shall be well should you remain with these two." With this, the Brother left.

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