Thursday, March 19, 2015

Farmer, Orb's Year 945-948


Orb's Year 945
Garth Farmer headed outside, despite the snow, anxious to begin preparing the soil for planting.  With such a large field to tend, alone, he needed plenty of time to get started!

Especially since this was to be such an important day!
"Garth! Are you working in the fields on your wedding day?!" Lydia King, his betrothed, exclaimed in mock horror as she approached.

Garth sheepishly laid down his compost bag on the ground and walked over to greet his wife-to-be.  "I was only going to work until noon-time."

Lydia laughed.  "Mm-hm, a likely excuse!" she teased.  "I wouldn't be surprised if we married in the fields!"
Garth chuckled and pulled Lydia into his arms.  "Come now, surely you believe I have a little  more class than that!"  He kissed her.

His decision to marry Lydia had been impulsive, but during their betrothal, he'd come to realize what a funny, smart and incredibly lovely woman she had become.  He'd intended to have a long engagement period, but found himself eager to get married and start the next generation of Farmers.
"But why do they have to take my room!" the young Harlow pouted.
"Och, and do you think you still need the crib for a bed?" her cousin, Helga teased.

Harlow glanced up at her beautiful cousin. "No!" She frowned.  "But it's always been my room!" she protested.

Helga laughed.  "And mine before that, and your papa's before that, and probably even Grandpa Able's before that!"

"Enough girls," Cade admonished finally.  "There is always room in this household for family!"

Helga turned aside, muttering, "Except when we girls are sent off!"

"What was that?" Uncle Cade asked sharply.

"Nothing!" Helga said, fluttering her eyelashes.  Her sisters Gia and Ingrid had each been sent to the royal court as servants this generation.  She wanted more from life than that!

Cade narrowed his eyes at his flippant niece, knowing exactly what she'd said, but had no time to respond as Garth came in with his bride-to-be.
"We're ready," Garth announced.  The girls gasped with pleasure and rushed Lydia into the bedroom to prepare as Garth paced anxiously in the main hall.

"She'll make a wonderful wife," Cade told his son, clasping his arm.  "And you will make a wonderful husband."

"Thank you, father," Garth said.  "I had two wonderful examples!"
Once Lydia was ready, the family spilled out into the night to witness Garth's marital vows.
Garth slipped the ring on Lydia's finger. 
Ignoring the cheers and catcalls, Garth pulled his wife into his arms and kissed her passionately.  
Garth slipped away with Lydia inside to enjoy their wedding night.
But the wedding celebration continued on... for all but one heart-broken girl...

***

Honeymoons rarely last that long, especially for the peasant class. 
The fields would not tend themselves, so Garth dragged himself from his wife's warm side and began to plant for the coming spring. 
And Lydia dressed, prepared to start her day... doing what?  She didn't really know what was to be expected of her!  Feeling intimidated, she sunk back down onto the bed and fretted.
"She's sleeping the day away!" Shanna complained.  "When I was her age, we woke and tended to the cleaning and the cooking!"
"Give her time to settle. She's a new bride!" Uma suggested. 

"Hmph!" Shanna snorted in disagreement.
Garth hurried inside after planting was mostly done.  I can finish the other row on the morrow, he told himself, anxious to return to his wife's arms.  Barely greeting anyone when he entered the main hall, he took precious moments to rinse the sweat and dirt from his body.

Able and Cade laughed as Garth hurried past them and shut the door to his room.  "Ah, to be young!" they chuckled to themselves, casting smiles towards their wives. 
"Oh blessed Orb," he groaned when he entered his room and found his wife in their bed.  "This is exactly where I want to find you every day I come home!"
Lydia tittered as he slipped into bed beside her and pulled her into his arms, kissing her with abandon.

They spent the remainder of the afternoon making love until at last their stomachs protested their empty state.

***

"Good evening," Garth said, sitting down at the table with his parents.  "How are you this fine night?"

Cade chuckled.  "Very well.  And how does married life settle with the two of you?"

Lydia blushed as she met Garth's parents all-too-knowing gazes.  
"We missed you for breakfast and lunch this morning," Shanna admonished.  "Did your parents not require you to help with the morning chores?" 
Lydia blinked at the veiled attack.  She floundered for a response.  "...I'm sorry Shanna...  I was unusually tired this morning..." She blushed again at the implication as father and son chuckled.

Garth reached across the table and held her hand.  "Yes, excuse us Mother.  I seem to have worn my wife out!" he joked lightly.

Shanna frowned slightly, "It didn't escape my notice that you still worked in the fields this morning!" she pressed, ignoring Cade's disapproving look.

Garth seemed oblivious to his mother's censure.  He joked, "You'll have to excuse her on the morrow, as well!"  Grinning, he grabbed Lydia's hand and pulled her to their room, the only one laughing.

Orb's Year 946
It soon became apparent to Lydia that she was pregnant.  And she would be blissfully happy, if it wasn't for her mother-in-law.  Garth never seemed to notice the insults and barbs sent her way.
"She told me that I would probably burn dinner when I offered to help prepare dinner!" Lydia whispered. 

Garth patted his wife's hand.  "She didn't mean it like that," he said, defending his mother.  "I'm sure she's just used to taking care of everything on her own."

Lydia scoffed. "On her own?"  There were more people in the Farmer household with helping hands than in the house where she'd grown up!
"Well, maybe she's intimated by you?" he offered.

Again, Lydia scoffed.  "She's shared her work with your Aunt Uma for years, but she's threatened by me?!"

"I don't know, Lydia! But, it can't help that you seem to be looking for slights! Just get to know her! Give her time to get to know you!"  He kissed his wife's cheek and headed out to the fields.

Lydia sighed.  Why couldn't her husband see how his mother treated her?!

***

Lydia finished showering and headed to the kitchen to prepare a light lunch for when Garth came home from the fields.  He was always so ravenous!
Shanna walked in as Lydia left the bathroom, each studiously ignoring the other.  She couldn't believe her son had married such a helpless ninny!  She glanced at the mess on the floor.  "She thinks she's a princess!" she exclaimed with frustration.  She was always cleaning up after the messy girl!
Grumbling, she grabbed a broom and began mopping up the water.  Why couldn't her son see how his wife shirked her duties!

***

Helga fluffed her hair and admired her form in the mirror.  Alejandro had asked her to meet him at the Kitchen.  Definitely not to eat, though, she thought with a thrill.  No, tonight she would become a woman!
She grinned when Alejandro walked in, coming straight to her..
..and pulling her into his arms.
He pulled away after a passion-filled kiss...
...chasing her upstairs...
..where she allowed herself to get caught.
"Oh, Alejandro!" she exclaimed, looping her arms around him and kissing him. 
He led her to the bed, where they fell down atop the sheets, running their hands up and down, reveling in the desire they felt.
Helga blew out a breath and stretched luxuriously afterwards.  She certainly felt like a woman!

Orb's Year 947
"What are people going to think if you keep going to the Gypsy Grotto?!" Uma admonished her daughter.  "They're going to think you're a loose woman! Easy with her favors!"
Helga laughed easily, kissing her mother's cheek.  "Oh, mama, you worry needlessly! I'm just having fun and dancing!"

Uma crossed her arms.  She had a strong suspicion that dancing was not all that Helga was doing down at the Grotto.  "I cannot continue to cover for you!" she whispered. "If you father hears, you know he'll be angry."

"Don't worry, mama!" Helga called as she skipped from the room.

***

"Thank you for walking me home," Helga said softly, stroking her hand down Casey's cheek.  "How can I ever repay you?"
Helga had danced around the fire, swirling her skirts around in front of him... enticing him with views of her ankles... and beautiful legs.  They'd slipped into his tent for a little privacy.  He'd loved every second of their lovemaking.

Casey glanced towards the darkened cottage to make sure there was no one watching.  "Perhaps you could do that thing you did earlier tonight..." he suggested huskily. 
Helga giggled, but wrapped her arms around his neck, leading him to a darkened corner.  "You'll have to be very quiet," she cautioned.

Casey groaned, "You naughty, naughty girl!"

***

"Well, you're certainly up early!" Uma grumbled, seeing her daughter-in-law at the table bright and early.  Although, she was not surprised to see that Helga was serving her breakfast.  "Couldn't you make your own breakfast?"

"Oh, Auntie Shanna, leave off!" Helga groaned.  "She's pregnant! I don't mind making breakfast for her!"
Shanna sat down beside Lydia. "When I was pregnant, Uma and I shared the responsibility of raising five children! You can't even take care of yourself, how are you going to take care of a baby!"
"I will handle it just fine, thank you," Lydia responded firmly.  She was beginning to learn that cowering before Shanna only gave her mother-in-law more ammunition against her.
"How are all my lovely ladies this morning?" Garth said, obliviously interrupting the tense meal.  He kissed his cousin, Helga on the head before taking his seat across from Lydia.

"Just wonderful!" Shanna said brightly.  "I was just instructing your wife on her duties once the baby comes!"
Garth glanced across the table at Lydia and winced.  It was a good thing he interrupted that conversation!  Reaching across the table, he took Lydia's hand in his own and squeezed. 

***

Garth worked the fields, willing the small plants to survive this brutal winter they'd been having.  He spent long hours tenderly caring for the sprouts.  If they did not survive the harvest, then his family could face lean times.

***

While Garth battled the weather, Lydia gave birth to their child. 
She'd barely held her daughter, Isla, in her arms before Shanna was commanding she turn her over to her.

"Let me see my sweet grandbaby!" Shanna announced, reaching out to hold the newborn in her arms.

Lydia felt bereft as Shanna began to rock and croon as though it was actually her own daughter.  Tears pricked her eyes as she imagined spending another twenty years locked in this constant battle with her husband's mother.

When she ran to her room and threw herself on her bed weeping, she heard Shanna informing the rest of the family that it was just a new mother's tears.

Orb's Year 948
Shanna doted on her grandchild, often slipping into the parent's room to get her before she cried.  She fed her, rocked her, and bathed her.  It was so nice having a baby in the house again!

She was sure Lydia would thank her, leaving her free to do.. well.. whatever it was that Lydia did all day!

***

Lydia walked into the nursery, surprised to hear Isla's wails cease almost as immediately as they'd begun.
She came to a stop when she saw Shanna rocking her daughter.

Shanna glanced up. "There's no need to trouble yourself.  I have her," she said, shooing her daughter-in-law from the room.
Dazedly, Lydia staggered from the room and collapsed down on the bench.
"Why do you let her treat you like that?" Helga asked.  "You should stand up to her and tell her to sod off!"
Lydia shook her head. "I couldn't say that to her!" she gasped. 

Shrugging, Helga responded, "Then get used to being treated like this..."

***

Garth worked in the fields, proud of how well the plants were all thriving.  It should be a good harvest this year!  Stretching his sore muscles, he headed inside to find his wife.
Walking into their room, he smiled when he found her in their bed.  He loved it when he found her like this, he thought as he slipped beside her. 

The look on her face stopped him cold.  He sighed.  "What's the matter?" he asked.  He had a feeling his mother was at the root of his wife's unhappiness.

 "She doesn't respect me!" Lydia said angrily.  "I'm sure she wishes you'd picked anyone but me! Nothing I do is right!"
"I'm sure that's not true," Garth said.  He pulled his wife into his arms and kissed her brow.  "And even if it were, it doesn't matter to me.  I chose you! I love you!"

He proceeded to show her all the reasons that he loved her. 
"Oh Blessed Orb!" Shanna exclaimed when she walked in the room without knocking.  She averted her eyes quickly.

Garth turned his head in horror and grabbed the blankets to cover himself.  "MAMA!"  Lydia reached for her nightgown since Garth seemed more concerned with covering his own nudity than hers.

Shanna turned and hurried from the room, shutting the door behind her.
"I told you that she didn't respect us!" Lydia raged.  "She just walks in here as if we are not a married couple! She treats me like a wayward child! And she treats Isla as though she is her child, not mine!  I cannot stand it here anymore!"
Garth stepped forward and held his wife, attempting to soothe her.  "I'll talk to her. I promise, Lydia."

Taking a deep breath, he strode from the room to find his mama.
Finding her nearby, he awkwardly stated, "Things need to change around here, mama..."

***

Apparently a lot of things were going to be changing...

***

"Can I speak with you, Lydia?" Helga asked nervously, interrupting their breakfast. 

"Of course," Lydia answered, hurrying to her side.  "What's the matter?"
Helga whispered her dilema.
"Pregnant?!" Lydia gasped.

***

Helga sat before the men she'd been intimate with recently.  "Unfortunately I do not know who the father is..." she said shame-faced. 
Gaius Consul shared a pointed look with his friend, Casey Potter.  "I only joined the two of you that one time," he whispered. 

Casey tugged at his neckline.  He enjoyed making love with Helga, but he wasn't ready to settle down! Variety was the spice of life!

"Pregnant?" Alejandro echoed.  He glanced at the other two men seated beside him.  He'd had no clue that Helga had been seeing anybody else...

...

When all was said and done, she left her father's home with a ring on her finger and a father for her unborn child.

***

Lydia snuggled Isla in her arms.  Her daughter was growing so fast!  Already her mother-in-law had begun hinting for a male heir.  Lydia wasn't surprised.  If it wasn't one thing, it was another! 

***

Harlow sighed.  The house felt so empty without Helga!  The elders whispered in hushed tones and no one would tell her what was going on!  Nobody ever told her anything because she was the baby!
She didn't feel like a baby anymore, though.
"Lydia?" she asked, sitting down beside her sister-in-law.  "I've been wondering...." she trailed off.

Lydia smiled kindly at her.  "What is it, dear?" she asked.

"How am I supposed to meet boys?" Harlow asked.
"BOYS?!" Lydia gasped.

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