Welcome to Chapter 2 of Time after Time. If you haven't read Chapter 1, I would suggest paying it a visit before you continue this chapter.
I'm getting a bit ahead of myself. I still haven't explained the curse to you. Let's get back to the story of Princess Laurita and her prince.
* * * * * As you'll recall, we left Princess Laurita with child and marrying a man who was of no relation to her unborn baby. Within a couple of months, they had both nearly forgotten that detail. Prince Frederique was treating Laurita like a queen. He was eager for the arrival of the baby and doted upon her every chance he got. She found herself enjoying the attention. Within those few months, Frederique had become more than a husband to her. He had become a true friend. There were many nights that were spent talking and sharing. They were still getting to know each other, but Laurita was finding that they had more in common than she could have ever predicted. Lymia was still working as a maid in the household. She went about her life seemingly unnoticed by anyone. She was taking great pleasure in watching Laurita suffer. What she failed to realize though was that Laurita was hardly suffering at all. She was getting along beautifully with her husband and his family. She was happily going through her pregnancy and decorating the baby's wing of the family castle. There was very little weighing on her mind that would make her suffer. Carla found Laurita in the kitchen one night after everyone had gone to bed. Her daughter-in-law was eating a late snack of omelettes. As she sat beside Luarita and talked with her, she took her daughter-in-law's appearance in. Laurita was glowing from head to toe and a small bulge was noticeable under her gown. It took Carla a moment to put it together. She interrupted Laurita mid-sentence.
"So, when were you and Frederique planning on telling us?" Carla asked her.
"Telling you what?" Laurita was thouroughly confused.
"About the baby." Carla commented.
"Oh. The baby." Laurita replied. "I was letting him choose the right moment." Frederique and her hadn't really discussed when they were telling his parents. "Well, he must be overjoyed!" Carla said, as she patted Laurita's stomach.
"He is." Laurita replied. "He's actually quite happy with it."
"He'll make a good father."
"Yes, he will." Laurita replied.
The women chatted a bit longer before heading back upstairs to their respective husbands. Carla debated about whether or not to wake Carl. She couldn't contain her excitement, so she went ahead and roused him from his sleep. "You're never going to believe what I found out tonight." She started.
"It better be good to have woken me." Carl grumbled. He was not a friendly person when he first woke up.
"It's better than good." Carla said. "Laurita is with child!"
"She is? Frederique told you this?" Carl asked. He was surprised his son hadn't mentioned it to him first.
"No, she did. I found her in the kitchen and kind of put it all together." Carla explained.
"We'll have to talk about it with them over breakfast." Carl said, before giving his wife a good night kiss and rolling back to sleep. Laurita found Frederique fast asleep in their room. She hoped he wouldn't be mad at her for telling his mother before he got the chance. She snuggled up to him and fell fast asleep. The happy family did discuss things over breakfast. Frederique explained to his parents that he had been waiting for the perfect moment to tell them. Carl started talking about the possibility of an heir to throne being born, while Carla rambled on quickly about redoing the old nursery wing. Frederique and Laurita spent the morning enjoying each other's company and ignoring the ramblings of his parents. Later that night, they were laying in the garden enjoying each other's company when Laurita brought up the subject of happiness.
"Are you happy?" Laurita asked Frederique. "I mean, really happy?"
"Yes, I am." Frederique replied, looking at her carefully. "Why, aren't you?"
"I am." Laurita began. "And it scares me."
"Why?" Frederique asked confused.
"Because I'm exactly where I thought I'd be - in a strange country, married to a prince, and with child." Laurita replied.
"So, why does that scare you?" Frederique asked.
"Because I always thought that life would make me miserable." Laurita replied. The next couple of months passed slowly as Laurita hid in the castle because Carla insisted that a woman with child, especially a noble woman with child, was in no condition to be seen in public. Not until after the baby was born. After two months of abiding by the queen's wishes, Laurita decided that she had had enough. She got the carriage and horses ready for an outing, only to find Carla staring at her the moment she climbed into the carriage.
"You're not planning on going anywhere, are you?" Carla asked.
"I actually am. I am planning on going into the market for some lunch and shopping." Laurita replied.
"It is not fitting. You will bring much shame to our family if you go out like that. What will Frederique think?" Carla asked. "Oh, I think Frederique would be just fine with it." Frederique replied to his mother as he climbed into the carriage beside his wife. It had been his idea for them to get out of the house.
"Frederique! You know it's not proper." Carla told her son.
"I know. But that doesn't mean I care." He replied matter-of-factly. "She is with child. There is no reason she should be shunned. If anything, she should be celebrated - she is going to be bringing a life into this world. There is no shame that can come from that."
"But it's not our way." Carla replied.
"No, it's not your way." Frederique replied, looking from Carla to Laurita. "But it is OUR way. Good-bye mother. I will see you when we return." They arrived about an hour later at the local marketplace. Frederique suggested that they begin with lunch. They sat down at the closest restaurant and looked at their options. They toasted their marriage and the upcoming baby with glasses of water. They were enjoying each other's company immensely. Both were overjoyed to be out of the castle and even more happy to be out of the castle together. They spent the entire day out enjoying each other's company. They ended by watching the sunset from a bench. Then, they loaded themselves back into the carriage and headed home. At home, they found that Frederique's parents were enjoying each other's company as well. Carla looked a lot less worried when they walked in and Frederique couldn't help but wonder what his father had said to her to get her so calmed down. They spent the evening together talking about their day out in the village. Laurita wasn't sure but she thought that Carla actually looked a bit envious of her. Frederique surprised Laurita with a fresh cut bouquet of roses. When she asked him what the occassion was, he told her that it was to commemorate their first date. As Laurita carried her roses up to their bedroom, she realized the full significance of the day she had just spent with Frederique. It had been the first day they had spent alone together. All of their other days had been in a castle with their parents nearby, often times just down the hall. A couple of days later, she headed into the market by herself. She knew that Carla was probably having a fit back at the castle that she was out in her condition. Laurita had cleared it with Frederique though and was not scared of the reaction she was sure Carla was having. While in the market, she ran into the one person she would have never expected to see - George. It was him that called out to her first.
"Laurita! Is it really you?" He asked.
"It is. What are you doing in Engles?" Laurita asked him, completely taken aback that he was there.
"I found a job as a gardener at a local home." He told her. "You're married to Frederique now, aren't you?"
"I am." She told him. "And we're very happy together."
"I can see that." George said, gesturing towards her stomach. "That's too bad."
"Too bad? Why?" Laurita asked.
"Well, because I still have feelings for you." George told her. "Really?" Laurita asked, surprised. "Then why didn't you ever show up at the marketplace after I visited your home."
"I tried, but every time that I managed to get away from things, you were never there. Eventually I gave up trying." He replied.
"Aren't you with someone now anyways?" Laurita asked.
"No, who told you that?" George asked.
"Lymia. She said you were with - never mind." Laurita said, shaking her head.
"Lymia? Lymia likes to lie. She's wanted me to be with her sister since I don't know when. The thing she doesn't realize is that her sister doesn't like me that way and I don't like her that way. It could never be." George replied.
"Oh." Laurita said, surprised. George had never actually deserted her. "Well, it's been nice seeing you, but I have to go now."
"Okay, I'll see you around?" George said it as more of a question than a comment.
"Maybe." Laurita fumed quietly as George walked away from her. She had a maid at home that she was going to have a very angry conversation with. Laurita found Lymia in her bedchamber. She did not waste a second in confronting the woman.
"You lied to me!" Laurita said as she walked into the room.
"I did?" Lymia asked, pretending to be ignorant.
"You did. You lied to me about George. You said he was with your sister and that he was through with me." Laurita told her.
"Oh that." Lymia said, coyly. "Oh yes, I suppose I did lie to you."
"Why? Why did you lie to me and why are you my maid?" Laurita asked her. "I want the real reason." "I'm not so sure you do." Lymia said, moving away from Laurita. "I'm not too sure that you are going to like the full story."
"I want to know." Laurita told her. "I have to know."
"Okay, you asked for it." Lymia replied. "I'm here because I want to watch you suffer. I want to watch you have a baby that doesn't belong to your husband. I want to watch your marriage and your life fall apart."
"What?" Laurita asked, taken aback. "But, why?"
"Because you came into our world and changed it. Things were going well before George met you. We were living peacefully from day to day. And then George met you. And he started to dream." Lymia said. "Do you know what happens to a gypsy starts to dream? They cease being a gypsy anymore because they lose sight of what's important - the here and the now. Family and love. George knew well that he would never be with you forever. But he allowed himself to hope anyways. And it was bound to be the downfall of us all." "So, you lied to me?" Laurita asked. "Because you thought George was going to bring down the whole tribe?"
"Yes." Lymia admitted. "But things were set into motion long before I lied to you. Things were set into motion the night you stayed in the village. Things were set into motion that can never be changed."
"What sort of things?" Laurita asked Lymia. She was not liking where this was headed.
"I was angry - still am actually. So, I invited an old friend over. A fried who practiced magic." Lymia explained. "She helped me put a curse on you - and all the generations of women to follow."
"A curse? What sort of curse?" Laurita asked in shock.
"One that will bring shame to your family for generations to come. You may have eluded that shame so far, but that doesn't mean your descendants will. For generations to come, the females of your line will get pregnant young and unmarried. There is no escaping it - for any of you." Lymia told a schocked Laurita. Laurita had never realized how cruel people could be. Laurita walked away from Lymia upset and in shock just as Frederique entered.
"I heard raised voices - is everything okay?" He asked Laurita. She just continued past him, barely noticing him.
"Oh, Frederique." Lymia said. "Everything is just fine. Your little wife just discovered a few things about her heritage is all."
"What Lymia?" Frederique asked, completely confused.
"Oh nothing. She'll tell you if she wants to." Lymia said, before leaving the room as well. Frederique found Laurita lying on the bed in their room.
"Is everything okay?" Frederique asked, as he joined her on the bed. "You seemed to be having an important conversation with Lymia earlier."
"Everything's fine - or at least it will be once I digest some information." Laurita assured him. "You know you can talk to me about anything, right?" Frederique asked her.
"Yes I do." She replied. "Are you okay with this baby? With it not being yours and all?"
"Of course. I wouldn't have married you if I wasn't." Frederique said, looking intently into her eyes. "I may not have helped create it, but I will definitely help raise it to be a smart and strong person. I am going to love this baby as though it were my own. As far as I'm concerned, it is."
"Thank you. Thank you for everything." Laurita said to him before swiftly getting out of bed. "I think the baby's coming!" Laurita shouted, as Lymia came into the room and Frederique stared in shock from the bed.
Within moments, Frederique was being ushered out of the room in order to allow the women to take care of the delivery. Many hours later, Laurita held a baby girl in her arms. She could barely stand and was quite weak, but she was determined to hold the baby. The delivery had taken almost all of her strength. Frederique and her had decided to name a girl Liliana. Laurita held Liliana in her arms a few more minutes before reluctantly handing her over to Carla, who was delighted to have a grandchild finally. Carla carried Liliana to the library where Frederique was waiting with his dad. He had been pacing the floors since Laurita went into labor and it was only after the noise quit from the bedroom that he had reluctantly agreed to have a seat. Frederique took the baby from his mother's arms and held her close to him. She was to be his pride and joy from this day forth. Laurita spent several hours sleeping and woke to find Lymia standing by her bed.
"Now, I'm probably just feeling sympathetic and nostalgic because I helped bring your daughter into the world, but I am going to tell you something. Listen carefully, because this is the last word I'm going to say concerning this curse." Lymia said to her.
"I'm listening." Laurita told her.
"Only a love that can withstand the barriers of time will break the curse." Lymia said, pausing. "I don't exactly know what that means, but there it is - the one salvation for your descendants. Do with it as you please."
Lymia left Laurita thinking intensely about the meaning. Frederique and Laurita spent the next year taking care of Liliana. There were many sleepless nights, many proud moments, and a lot of happiness between them. As she watched her daughter grow, she wondered whether or not she would one day tell her about the curse.
She also pondered what the doctor had told her days after Liliana's birth. He had examined her and informed her that this first birth had been a lot for her body. The likelihood that she would be able to have more children was slim. Laurita was dismayed at this news because she had desperately wanted to give Frederique a child of his own. He seemed less phased by this news and more overjoyed at the prospect of watching Liliana grow. Laurita spent every moment she could with her growing daughter. She knew that these moments would pass all too quickly. Laurita soaked in every smile and every little laughter that her daughter produced. She was growing up quick. As Liliana grew, so did the love between Frederique and Laurita. There were days when Laurita forgot that Frederique wasn't Liliana's father. Frederique had been formally crowned by the country. He was learning all he could from his father and was prepared to take the throne when the time came. Laurita was growing closer and closer to Carla as she learned what her role as Queen of Engles would be. Their lives seemed to be going quite well and they were both happy.
* * * * * I guess that's where we'll be closing our story for today. I have company to get to and things to attend to. I hope you will join me again sometime soon to hear more of the story. Laurita's story is only the beginning of things.
Time after Time - Chapter 2
Mar 21, 2009 by enchantmentsisters
Moderator actions: Unpublish
Report this Story:
If you find a problem with this story or wish to report inappropriate content, click here