100. Chapter 99 - July 1439
Ivy lay back in bed and groaned, fighting the nausea. Why didn’t she listen to Estella? Boromir started to cry from his cradle, hungry again, and she nearly started to cry herself. She didn’t know how she was going to deal with this.
Boromir was only four months old, but Ivy was positive she was pregnant again. Her nipples were suddenly sore, though there was no change in Bori’s nursing. She was exhausted again, though he was starting to sleep longer during the night. And she’d been feeling slightly ill every afternoon for the past few days. Today it was worse.
She should have listened to Estella. But she’d been feeling better, and though she and Pippin had found other ways to pleasure each other, one day she’d just given in, wanting Pippin as much as he obviously wanted her. Bori had only been three months old--it had to be too early to get pregnant again, right? So she’d taken that one chance. What had Estella told her about it only needing once?
Boromir started to scream louder and Ivy rolled out of bed, just barely making it to the chamber pot to empty her stomach.
She heard the bedroom door open. “What’s wrong, Ivy? Bori’s been crying... Ivy?” Ivy felt Pippin’s hand on her back and she started to sob.
“Are you sick, love? I can go get one of my sisters to help you for a while--”
She shook her head, suddenly angry at him. He got to enjoy himself, but then didn’t have to go through this! “I’m not sick, I’m pregnant!” she snapped.
“Oh.” Pippin stood up and went to the cradle. He picked up Bori and shushed him, giving him a finger to suck on. “Do you want me to get Lily or--?”
“No.” Ivy grabbed a clean diaper from the stack on the dresser and wiped her mouth. “I’m better now. Just bring him to me.” She stood and got back into bed. She leaned back against the pillows and opened her blouse. Pippin handed her Boromir. Pippin looked guilty. Good.
“I’m fine.” she snapped, keeping her eyes on Bori. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw him pick up the pot and leave. She burst into tears. She hadn’t really meant to snap at him. She was just... tired. She was just very tired and she was going to be more tired now, with another baby on the way.
Pippin came back just after Bori had finished. “I sent one of the stableboys to get Estella for you,” he said quietly. “I figured you’d want to her.” He set a cup of tea on the table--peppermint, by the smell of it--and put the cleaned chamber pot next to the bed. “Lily’s busy right now, but she said she’d be by in a little while.” He paused for a moment, then sat on the edge of the bed. “I’m sorry,” he said.
She shook her head and the tears started coming again. Pippin took Boromir from her and carried him to his cradle. Then he came back, sat next to her, and pulled her into his arms.
“I’m just so tired,” she finally sobbed. Bori had been such a demanding baby, needing to eat every two hours or so. He still needed her around the clock. And now she was getting the nausea and tiredness of early pregnancy on top of it. What if the next baby was just as demanding? How could she cope?
She turned to Pippin, and put her arms around his waist to hug him back. She wasn’t really mad at him. It wasn’t entirely his fault. She could have listened to Estella.
Ivy woke sometime later, all alone in the bed. It looked like early evening. How long had she slept? She sat up and groaned. Her breasts were painfully full. Why hadn’t Bori woken her? She panicked and rushed over to his crib. It was empty. She tried to catch her breath, her heart pounding in her ears. It was rare, but not unheard of, for an infant to be found dead in its crib for no apparent reason. But he wasn’t here. Pippin must have him.
She put on her robe and went out to the parlor. Pippin was rocking Bori and chatting quietly with Lily.
Ivy hurried over and took Bori, cuddling him. “He didn’t wake me. I thought something was wrong...” She shuddered and held her son a little tighter.
“Oh, love, I’m sorry I scared you. 1d; Pippin stood up and hugged her, Bori nestled between them. “You needed to sleep, so I took him for a while.”
She nodded. “How long was I asleep?”
“Almost six hours now.”
She looked down at Bori. He was stirring from sleep, but he seemed content. “Wasn’t he hungry?”
Pippin smiled. “I gave him a bottle.”
Ivy wrinkled her nose. “Estella may not be too happy about that.”
Pippin shrugged. “You needed to rest, Ivy. You can’t wear yourself out.”
“An occasional bottle won’t hurt,” Lily said, standing up to join them. “Both you and Faramir were raised on it, and you’re both healthy.”
“I know.” Ivy sighed. She still remembered how angry Estella had been, because Diamond wouldn’t nurse Fari. She couldn’t help but think she’d get scolded for putting Bori on a bottle, even occasionally, when she was perfectly capable of nursing him.
Bori started to whimper and Ivy sat down, expertly balancing him in one hand while the other opened her blouse. She’d gotten quite good at that. She hissed in pain when he latched on to her aching, sore breast.
“It’s painful?” Lily asked. “Not just when you’re too full?”
Ivy nodded. “For about a week now.”
“How often have you had relations?” Lily asked.
Ivy didn’t even blush. She supposed after giving birth in front of her, there wasn’t much she had to hide from Lily. “Only the once,” she said. “About a month ago, maybe?”
“Hmmm. Well, it only takes once,” Lily said.
Now Ivy had reason to blush. “That’s what Estella told me. I didn’t listen.”
“You aren’t the first, nor the last, mum to figure it out the hard way,” Lily said. “But you didn’t do it alone, either.” She glanced up at Pippin. He gave an apologetic shrug. “From what you and Pippin have told me, it does sound like you’re expecting again.”
Ivy didn’t know what to feel at first, hearing confirmation from Lily that she was pregnant again. Overwhelmed, because Bori was very young and still depended on her so much. Her letter about Bori’s birth had probably just reached Éowyn in Ithilien, and Ivy was already making her a grandmother again. But she was happy, too, now that she’d had some rest. It wasn’t the best timing, but she did want more children.
“Make sure you get lots of rest, dear,” Lily said, patting her arm. “And you’ll need to eat more, having two babies to provide for.”
After Lily had left, Ivy looked up at her husband. He still looked guilty. She felt sorry for him now, that he felt guilty about this. “Are you happy?” she asked.
Pippin’s mouth twitched a little, like he couldn’t decide whether to smile or not. “Are you?”
“I know it will be exhausting, but...” She smiled and nodded. “Yes, I am.”
His face broke into a huge grin. He knelt in front of her and leaned in to kiss her. “I’m happy, too.” He pressed his palm to her cheek. “I’m sorry this happened so quickly, though, when you’re still so tired.”
She shrugged. “We’ll manage.”
Pippin smiled and kissed her again, then tucked his hand under Bori, to touch her belly. He leaned close to his son. “You’re going to get a little brother or sister, Bori!” he whispered into Bori’s ear. “What do you think of that?” He kissed Bori’s ear.
Boromir paused in his nursing and turned his head to give his father a slobbery grin.
“I think he likes the idea,” Pippin chuckled.
“Until he has to share these,” Ivy said, patting her breast.
“I learned to share them.” Pippin gave her a suggestive grin, then he leaned close to her ear. “At least we no longer have to worry about you getting pregnant.”
Ivy rolled her eyes and patted his cheek. “You’re just going to have to wait until I’m not exhausted anymore.”
It was just Ivy’s luck that Estella would show up the following day as she was having a bout of morning--afternoon?--sickness. Estella waited by the bedroom door until she was done throwing up. Once it had passed, Ivy wiped her mouth and drank down the peppermint tea Vinca had brought her earlier. Then she got herself back into bed and finally looked over at Estella.
Estella came towards her, giving her a look that plainly said ‘I told you so’. Ivy groaned and lay back on her pillows. “Don’t even say it, Estella,” she said.
“I’m not going to say anything.” Estella sat on the bed next to her. “But if it makes you feel any better, I did say something to Pippin.” She winked.
Ivy had to smile at that. Though they were happy about the baby, Pippin still felt a little guilty that she had to go through all this.
Estella refilled the teacup and handed it to Ivy. “Feeling better?”
Ivy nodded and took the cup. “This helps,” she said. She took a sip of the tea. “I should be back to normal in an hour or so.” She glanced at the clock on the mantle. “Pippin took Bori for a while, so I could get a nap, but my stomach had other plans.”
“Pippin said Bori did fine with the bottle. Did he nurse all right for you after?”
Ivy nodded. “He did fine.” She sighed. “Are you mad Pippin used the bottle?”
“Of course not,” Estella said. “He said you were miserable and needed the rest. Nothing wrong with that. Why would you think I was mad?”
Ivy shrugged. “You were mad when Fari used the bottle, when Diamond was capable of--”
“Entirely different!” Estella said. “Diamond wasn’t exhausted and suffering from morning sickness!” She patted Ivy’s leg. “The only concern is that bottles are easier to feed from, and some babies don’t want to switch back--that’s why Fari couldn’t use a wet nurse--but it sounds like Bori’s doing all right. And you will probably need the bottle in a few months anyway. Your milk will decrease some and then change back to the ‘first milk’ for the new baby.”
New baby. It was still hard for Ivy to imagine. She was still getting used to her first new baby. She yawned. She wondered if she could catch a short nap before Bori needed to nurse again.
“I’ll let you get some rest,” Estella said. She looked at Ivy, eyebrow raised. “Now what did we learn from all this?”
Ivy sighed. “Don’t let Pippin come near me until the new baby is three years old.”
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.