61. Chapter 61
Goldi sighed and shifted on the small couch, her warm breath ghosting across Fari’s leg. He ran his fingers through her hair, gently so as not to wake her. She was tired most of the time, now and he wanted her to get all the sleep she could.
She’d gone home soon after they had returned to the Shire, and he didn’t see her again until the Gamgees had come for Ivy’s birthday. But now she was at the Smials to stay. His parents had convinced the Gamgees to let her stay--his dad had practically begged them--so that Fari wouldn’t miss out on Goldi’s pregnancy.
Her parents had insisted they get married first, but Goldi had refused. She had decided she wanted a wedding in the spring, with a big party. Winter weddings were only done to quickly take care of the embarassment of an unexpected pregnancy, and Goldi was determined that no one would think she was embarassed by her condition. No amount of convincing would change her mind and her parents had finally relented. Fari hadn’t even tried to bring up that they’d nearly gotten married that fall--Goldi was stubborn enough when she wasn’t pregnant. There was no way she’d give in now that she had her heart set on a big spring wedding.
The only condition of her moving to the Smials was that they still had to act as a betrothed couple, which meant Goldi had her own room, and they were expected to respect the Gamgee’s wishes on the matter. Fari thought it silly, considering Goldi was already pregnant, but after all that had happened, he vowed he would obey. He figured he owed her parents that much.
“Is she sleeping?”
Fari looked up at Ivy. She was standing in the doorway of the parlor, a tea tray in her hands. He nodded and she came in and gently laid the tray on the table.
“Thank you,” Fari whispered. Ivy smiled and left as quietly as she had come in. Fari watched her go, thankful again that he had her for a mother. She’d done a lot for him. She’d even ruined her reputation for him.
They hadn’t heard anything else from Diamond, which Fari was thankful for. He was sure she had heard what had happened. The news of Goldi’s pregnancy had made the gossip rounds up north. He’d even received a letter of congratulations from the Northtooks, from an uncle he could barely remember from a childhood visit. Relations with them had improved some, now that they knew what Diamond had done, and that her terrible stories about Fari’s dad had been lies. They’d even invited Fari and Goldi to come visit this summer, when the baby was old enough to travel. He still wasn’t sure how he felt about that. He’d deal with it when the time came.
He sighed and bent over to kiss Goldi’s cheek. She stirred awake, smiling up at him. He smiled back. He really didn’t know what he would have done without her these last few months. And she’d never given up on him, even when he was angry and snapping at her.
“Ivy brought tea,” he said.
She pushed herself up and yawned. “Oh, good. I’m starving.”
Fari chuckled. She seemed to always be starving. He placed his hand on her belly. He’d been so surprised when he’d seen her again after their month-long separation. Her stomach had still been flat when she left. It had all suddenly become very real to him when he had put his hand on the small bulge in her belly. His baby was in there!
“Have you felt anything else?” he asked. She’d felt the first tiny flutters of movement yesterday.
She shook her head. “Ivy said I probably won’t feel many at first. But then she said something about Took babies liking to dance and not letting their mothers get any rest.”
He grinned. “Maybe you’ll be lucky and he’ll take after me. I don’t like dancing.”
She giggled and laid her hand over his, pressing his hand against her hard belly. Now he understood why his Dad had always been touching Ivy when she was pregnant. This was the most amazing thing that had ever happened to him.
He looked up at her. “I love you,” he breathed.
Goldi quickly swallowed the piece of bread she’d just stuffed in her mouth. “I love you , too,” she said and leaned over to kiss him.
The door opened and they startled apart out of habit. Ivy came in again. “Oh, good. You’re awake.” She grinned. “We just got a message from my dad. Moira started her labor this morning.”
“Sit down, Eomer! You’re going to wear a hole in the floor!”
Eomer looked over at his brother. How could Theo expect him to be calm. His wife was having a baby!
“I know that what’s going on in there sounds scary,” his dad said, “but your imagination is much worse than what’s actually happening. Do you want me to see if they’ll let you go in?”
Another groan came from the room across the hall. Eomer stared at the door in horror and shook his head. He didn’t want to see what was happening, because then he’d feel even more guilty for Moira being in pain.
“It will be easier with the next one,” Theo said sagely. “Remember how scared I was when Sar was born, but it was easier with Arwen.”
“I don’t know if I want any more,” Eomer said. He heard Moira groan again and he cringed.
“Well, you might want to talk to Moira about that,” his dad chuckled. “She might have something to say about it being worth the trouble. Lasses are far braver than us lads.”
Eomer shook his head and leaned against the doorframe, his eyes on the door across from him. “They must be, because I don’t think I could do this more than once.”
“That’s why they have the babies,” said Theo.
“Still in labor, I take it?” Ivy asked. She walked towards him down the hall, pulling off her snowy cloak. Pippin, Fari and Goldi were right behind her. “Poor girl,” Ivy said. She gave Eomer a kiss, then hurried into the room. Goldi gave his hand a squeeze and followed her in. Eomer caught a glimpse of Moira sitting on the birthing stool, her face screwed up in pain. She was leaned back against Rose, while Eowyn knelt in front of her. Then Goldi shut the door and Eomer slumped against the wall.
“It’s really not as bad as it sounds,” Pippin said. Eomer glared at him.
“I’ve already tried, Pip,” said his dad. Pippin chuckled and sat next to him.
Time just seemed to drag on for Eomer, punctuated by the sounds coming from his bedroom. He tried not to glance at the clock, but he knew it was nearly midnight and still no baby. Of course, she hadn’t even gone into their room until late afternoon. He had been walking with her all day through the hallways, until her pains got close enough together for Éowyn to tell her it was time.
“Sit!” Theo commanded, pointing at the floor next to him. He’d pulled out the chessboard so that he and Fari could play. “You can relax,” Theo said. “They’ll come get you when it’s over.”
Eomer gaped at him. “You paced for both Sar and Arwen!”
Theo grinned at him. “And you always told me to sit, didn’t you?”
Eomer sighed and sat next to them. They hadn’t even made the first move of their game when Eomer heard a baby crying. He glanced at the door, brows furrowed. It was awful late for Chloe to be bringing Arwen to see her dad. “Sounds like Arwen’s upset.”
“Eomer?” Theo poked him in the side and grinned at him. “That’s your baby.”
Eomer gasped, the breath knocked out of him. Theo pulled him to his feet and on shaky legs he went to wait outside his bedroom door. He startled when Ivy opened the door. “Come in, Dad,” she said and took his hand to pull him inside.
Moira was tucked into bed, her eyes on the little bundle in her arms. She looked up at him as he approached the bed. “It’s a girl,” she said, tears on her cheeks. “She’s beautiful.”
Eomer peeked into the blanket and although the tiny girl was red and a bit squished, he had to agree she was the most beautiful baby in the world. “Hello, Calla,” he said, touching his daughter’s cheek. They’d decided to name a girl after Moira’s mum.
He kissed Moira and then she put the baby in his arms. He turned to face his family. “This is Calla,” he said, propping the baby up a little so everyone could see her.
Rose slid her arm around her husband’s waist and rested her cheek on his shoulder. “Isn’t she lovely, Theo,” she sighed.
“Rose,” Theo pleaded. “Arwen’s not even a year old yet!”
“You can’t argue with them, Theo” Pippin said. “You might as well learn that n--ow!” Pippin rubbed his arm where Ivy had pinched him.
Eomer gazed at his daughter a while longer, gently touching damp curls that were dark like her mum’s.
“She’s lovely,” his dad said, peeking over his shoulder.
Eomer looked up at him and smiled. “I suppose you want a turn, Granddad?”
“Well, if you insist,” his dad said with a wink.
Eomer gave Calla to her grandfather and went back to sit beside his wife. “How are you feeling?” he asked, taking her hand.
“Tired,” she sighed. “But very, very happy.”
Eomer kissed her gently and leaned back next to her. He could finally relax, no longer having to worry about Moira or the baby. Calla. Eomer sighed, suddenly feeling the exhaustion of a day of worry.
Ivy came over and sat on the bed near Eomer’s feet. “I think it’s going to be a while before Dad lets anyone else hold her.” She gave an exaggerated pout.
Eomer smiled and nudged her with his foot. “Where’s my nieces and nephews? I thought for sure we’d have the girls in here arguing over who got to hold the baby next.”
Ivy laughed. “Which is why Ev and Poppy will bring them tomorrow. We wanted to give you at least one day of peace and quiet!” She patted Moira’s foot and grinned. “Ready for the next one?”
Eomer gaped at his sister. “She just got done with this one!”
Moira gave a tired chuckle. “I think I’ll take a bit of a rest before thinking about more babies.”
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.