I went to bed last night and everything was different. Two-Twelve and I had just finished, after spending the last few weeks trying to determine just who these people who claim to be the old gods really are. We were not able to find out much information, but Two-Twelve has always managed so far, so I am not too worried about it.
I have been the boss monster to Two-Twelve’s dungeon for a few years and other then finding a man I love more than anything else in this world, there are other advantages to being a dungeon boss. I no longer age, which is a great bonus, but I don’t have to worry about growing hungry, or getting hot or cold, unless the temperature is quite extreme.
There are also minor bonuses as well, as a woman there are some things that can’t be avoided, but being a boss monster to a dungeon it has been so negligible there are months I didn’t even notice it. That’s why when I missed it this time I never gave it another thought.
This morning however for the second day in a row I was quite queasy. Yesterday we were still messing with all of those old books, and who knows how long it has been since some of them have been opened. Even if they did contain something that would make you sick as a dungeon monster it would be over very quickly.
That’s why after a few hours when I felt fine I put the thought out of my head, but this morning when I got up I had to rush to the bathroom, and I actually threw up. Now the thought running though my head is impossible, but if I didn’t know any better I would think I was pregnant.
I know that is impossible however. Not that anything prevents me from becoming pregnant, but it is Two-Twelve that is the one that is incapable. We have talked about it in great detail in the past, and although I always wanted children I knew from the moment I chose him it just would never be.
I remember one time getting so angry with him, because he once made the suggestion in summoning a monster for me to get me pregnant. Of course that was before he lost his memory, and he didn’t understand why that wasn’t acceptable since he couldn’t have children himself.
We finally came to an agreement that when we were ready I would just summon a child and treat it as our own, I mean there are those out there that adopt and live perfectly happy lives, so this, in a sense would have at least been part of us because we summoned it.
I don’t know how it happened, but when Inari was first born in the dungeon and she called me Mommy I kind of lost it for a little bit. Two-Twelve got quite angry with me and even after Inari finished her training I thought that might be the closest to a child Two-Twelve and I would have.
Inari does think of us as her parents, and Dawn and Twilight seem to be warming up to it as well, but even I know Maeve is just going through the motions. I guess she is like that defiant daughter, so even if she doesn’t think of us as her parents I still think of her as a daughter.
I think when Scylla gave birth to her daughter though is when it really hit me the hardest. I love Two-Twelve and all the girls, but just giving birth to another being from your own body, which was something I would never get to experience.
That is why even after even throwing up this morning no matter how much I wished it to be true I knew that couldn’t possibly be the explanation. If I did manage to get sick from one of the books at the Merretta library, and it was bad enough that even being a dungeon monster didn’t make it go away. I should check to see what it is, so I can warn the library about it.
After cleaning myself up I open [Menu] and after opening my abilities screen, staring right at me is a word under status that leaves me breathless [Pregnant]. I want to start jumping up and down and screaming, but how can this really be possible?!
This has to be some kind of cruel trick or mistake. I then quickly think back about the time when I asked Thirty-seven if Two-Twelve could have children, and remember her saying that she had never heard of it before. She didn’t say it was impossible, but that she never heard of it before.
My heart starts to race, but then I realize all the other times when we have talked about it with the girls and such they all said it was impossible as well. My brain is trying to wrap around what it is I am seeing, and trying to make sense of something I know is impossible.
I try to calm myself down to think about this logically… Now it is impossible for Two-Twelve to have children, so there is no way I can possibly be pregnant right? I mean Two-Twelve always has been a unique dungeon core, so maybe that is why?
Then why would it have taken so long, because it isn’t like it was something we were trying to avoid, so surely if he was capable it would have happened long before now. I guess there is always the possibility of magic, but that is just horrifying to think about, and why would someone do something like that to us?
I think the biggest question, if this really is real, then what am I going to tell Two-Twelve? He knows it’s impossible as well, so if I just tell him I am pregnant what would his reaction be? I would never cheat on him, but I have no way to defend myself to the contrary, especially if I really am pregnant.
The only thing I can think of is talking to Scylla, she was born from the dungeon so she knows as much about it as anyone, and she has had a baby as well. There is also the fact she is no longer bound to the dungeon, so she can’t be compelled to tell Two-Twelve about it.
I quickly use [Menu] to get dressed and try to sneak out of the room to talk to her, but Two-Twelve looks at me from the bed with a concerned expression and says. “Is everything alright?”
I panic and say the first thing that comes to mind. “Yes… We have just been busy for the last few weeks, so I wanted to make sure everything is still running smoothly.”
Two-Twelve: “You’re probably right, I should check on the bunnies, and see how the training of the troops is coming along. Not to mention check to see how much progress Azami has made.”
I hate lying to Two-Twelve, but what can I possibly say? So I just try to get out of there as quickly as possible. “Alright… I will see you later then.”
As soon as I am out of the bedroom I don’t stop till I reach City Hall. It is still quite early so I catch Scylla just as she, Kline, and the baby arrive.
Scylla: “You’re out awfully early this morning.”
“Kline, do you think I could borrow your wife? There is something I really would like to discuss with her in private.”
Kline: “Of course, I couldn’t refuse you even if I wanted to.”
“You know what I mean Kline.”
Kline: “I’m sure we can manage, is everything alright?”
“Yes, it’s just girl stuff.”
Kline then takes Listel from Scylla. “Don’t worry we got this.”
“Thank you Kline.”
Scylla: “Don’t forget, I just fed her before we left, but if she starts fussing give her some of the mashed up fruit I made up for her.”
Kline gives Scylla a brief kiss, and then enters City Hall while Scylla looks at me with a confused expression. “What’s going on?”
Two-Twelve said he was going to go to the dungeon core room so I can’t be too careful… “Shhh, not here.”
This only seems to cause more confusion in Scylla. I then quickly cast [Gate] and Scylla arrive at the capital.
Scylla: “What are we doing here?”
“I’m sorry, I just didn’t know where else to go.”
Scylla: “You’re starting to worry me…”
Scylla seems to have the same whirlwind of emotions I had when I first read the words on my status screen. “But…”
“I don’t know… Are you sure it is impossible for Two-Twelve to have children?”
Scylla: “Master has always been quite different than other dungeon cores, but don’t you think if it was possible, it would have already happened by now?”
“I said the same thing… But I don’t know how else to explain it!”
Scylla: “You haven’t…?”
“Of course not! I would never!
Scylla: “Are you sure you are pregnant?”
“It shows in my status and everything in [Menu].”
Scylla looks around. “Let’s find somewhere we can sit and talk about this…”
After I agree we find a small outdoor café that has little foot traffic this time of day and sit far away from everyone.
Scylla: “If we rule out the traditional way, then what else is there?”
Belinda: “I was thinking with magic anything is possible, but why would someone do this?”
Scylla: “Well you have wanted a child, so it isn’t like it was necessarily done to hurt you. What of the old gods, a god surely would be capable of something like this, right?”
Belinda: “When we talked to the beastkin they did say something about a reward, and that it would have to wait, but I want Two-Twelve’s child! Not something like this! Will it even be human?”
Scylla: “By what you told me that god didn’t seem the type for something like this, what about the other one?”
Belinda: “She did tell Two-Twelve that he would wake up one morning and the answer to helping them would just come to him. You don’t think this is what she meant do you?”
Scylla: “I don’t know…”
“What do I do…?”
Scylla: “I don’t know, maybe we should bring the others in on this.”
“What if they tell Two-Twelve?”
Scylla: “Well you are going to have to tell him something, and it has been so long since I traveled with you all, I am sure they would be far more insight then I do.”
“This isn’t about adventuring though.”
Scylla: “I haven’t had near the contact with Master since his return as the rest of you, and so much has happened since then.”
“I don’t want to bring the others into this, because it not only puts me in a bad way, but it puts them in one as well. With them being bound to Two-Twelve I don’t want them to have to lie to Two-Twelve.”
Scylla: “Then all I can say is talk to Two-Twelve about it… Maybe he might have some idea how this happened.”
“I am sure he would have an idea, but I want to have something I can take to him as a possible other explanation…”
Scylla: “If you can’t go to Two-Twelve, then the only ones I can see able to help us are the others.”
I sigh, and after finally agreeing I leave Scylla at the café and quickly [Gate] back to Tobes. I knock on Roxy and Zoey’s door.
Roxy: “Miss Belinda, what’s the matter? You seem troubled.”
“I want to ask you to do something that as a boss monster of Two-Twelve’s dungeon that may be quite hard. I want you to keep a secret from him.”
Zoey: “Oh! I want to know a secret to be kept from Boss!”
Roxy: “I don’t know what is going on, but I can see this is important… I promise.”
Zoey: “You can’t tell Roxy without telling me!”
“I’m sorry to have bothered you two…”
Roxy: “No, Belinda wait!” –Roxy whispers in one of Zoey’s ears which cause them to perk up quite a bit.-
Zoey: “I promise Belinda under punishment of death to keep your secret!”
“I don’t want to put you two in a bad way with Two-Twelve, but I don’t know who else to talk to.”
Roxy: “If it is something that Two-Twelve uses an ultimate command on us we would be unable to keep it from him, but I promise as long as it doesn’t come to that he won’t hear it from Zoey or I.”
“Well alright, but not here. Scylla is waiting for us.” –I then use [Gate] to return to Scylla at the capital with Roxy and Zoey.-
“I’m sorry for being so secretive with you all, but I just don’t know what else to do.”
Roxy: “I promise if it is something we can help you do we will.”
“I found out this morning that I am pregnant…”
Roxy: “Isn’t that great news?!”
Zoey: “Oh! Belinda cheated on boss!”
“No, I promise, I wouldn’t do that to Two-Twelve, but she is right. Two-Twelve is not capable of having children, so anyone would think that.”
Roxy: “Well this is not only good news for you, but good news for us to right?!”
“How do you figure?”
Roxy: “If it is possible for Two-Twelve to wear the ring and get you pregnant, then that means maybe Zoey and I could have children as well.”
Belinda: “I never thought of the ring…! But I don’t think he has ever worn the ring to bed before.”
Roxy: “If you say you didn’t cheat on Two-Twelve I believe you, but I don’t see how else it would be possible. It only takes once, so are you sure he didn’t forget one night and just leave the ring on without thinking about it?”
Belinda: “I don’t think so… But it is by far better than anything I can come up with.”
Zoey: “Well what did you think had happened?”
“I don’t know… Divine intervention?”
Roxy: “Divine… I know you meant the old gods, but there is the missing divine being that Two-Twelve summoned right? If you think about it, doesn’t that line up when you would have had to have gotten pregnant?”
Belinda: “That’s just as bad as the old gods doing something! You are saying I could be pregnant with a monster?”
Zoey: “I resent that!”
Roxy: “You and Two-Twelve are both divine beings, [Menu] didn’t let Two-Twelve select any options when summoning a divine being, and as for the unknown requirement, I am sure you can guess…”
Belinda: “But he set [Menu] to warn him weeks ago, if what you are saying was true wouldn’t it have warned him the very next time we had sex?”
Scylla: “I don’t know if I agree with Roxy’s reasoning, but it takes more than just that to have a baby… If that was the case I would have had several babies by now. –She says her ears glowing a shade of pink.-
Zoey: “Several… You and Kline have been married how long now…?”
Scylla: “Not everyone is like you Zoey!”
“I don’t know, I see what you are saying, but that seems like a lot of what-ifs.”
Roxy: “After reading that book that Lilah bought in the dungeon, by what she told me it wouldn’t be the most difficult set of instructions for the summoning certain types of monster.”
Scylla: “If you take out the fact it is the dungeon core himself, and one of his boss monsters, it isn’t even an uncommon summoning requirement. I have never heard of it in monsters that carry their young, but I have heard of similar requirements for monsters that lay eggs.”
“I think the ring thing make far more sense. I don’t remember him ever keeping the ring on, but maybe he forgot to take it off when we got home one time.”
Scylla: “Well you wanted options and there are two. They only other thing I could think of would be to talk to an elder, or another dungeon core, but if you really are having Two-Twelve’s baby. That might not be something you want anyone else to know about.”
“Having the opinion of another dungeon core would be quite helpful. What about Inari?”
Scylla: “I know you trust Inari, but I think the next person you tell should be Two-Twelve. This does concern him as well, and you shouldn’t tell another dungeon core before your own.”
Roxy: “I may be a bit of an outsider, because I wasn’t born in the dungeon, but I have seen the way Inari looks at Two-Twelve and you. I don’t think she would do anything to ever hurt either of you, but what Scylla says makes a lot of sense. Not even considering the dungeon part, but just as a man, the longer you don’t tell Two-Twelve about it, the more it’s going to look like you are guilty of something.”
“Even though I didn’t do anything, that doesn’t mean there isn’t the possibility I am carrying a child that isn’t his, so I am not sure I am prepared to tell him that… Will you all go with me to Inari’s?”
Scylla: “I won’t do anything to hurt Two-Twelve. I know what you are doing is to try to prevent that, but talking to another dungeon core instead of him, you are walking on a fine line, and if it gets to the point where I think otherwise I will tell him myself.”
Roxy and Zoey agree to go as well, so after sending a message to Inari asking if it would be ok to pay her a visit, I use [Gate] to take us to Inari’s dungeon, and Inari gives everyone a hug.
Inari: “Not only Aunt Zoey, and Aunt Roxy, but Aunt Scylla too?”
“Yes, we were having a bit of a girl talk, and I wanted to get your opinion on it as a dungeon core.”
Inari: “Is Daddy doing something bone-headed again?”
“Actually it isn’t him this time but me… Can I trust you to keep this just between us no matter what?”
Inari: “It doesn’t involve any secrets about Daddy’s dungeon that me might not want known does it?”
Scylla: “There is a possibly that it might be the case.”
Inari: “I am sorry Mommy, I would do anything for you and Daddy, but also means I won’t do something like that to Daddy either. I can see this is really bothering you though, so I don’t mind just being here for you, but I don’t want you to say anything that Daddy might not want me to know.”
Scylla: “Thank you…”
Inari: “Don’t thank me… It looks like that isn’t want Mommy wanted to hear.”
“I understand… I just…”
Inari: “Daddy loves you and there isn’t anything thing he wouldn’t do for you, so I don’t know what could be making you this upset, but have a little faith in Daddy.”
“Can I just stay here for a while, till I can bring myself to do what I need to?”
Inari: “Of course!”
The girls and I continue to visit with Inari for a few hours, and I almost start to feel a bit of the burden has been lifted, but then Two-Twelve sends me a message about speaking to Logan. I really thought I would be more excited about having a baby, but there are just so many questions I can’t seem to think of it as a happy occasion as I thought it would be.
Scylla has her own baby to take care of so I eventually send her, Roxy, and Zoey back home, but I stay with Inari for a while longer.
Inari: “Was that Daddy? By the way you have been talking, he doesn’t have a clue what is going on, so you sure he is ok?” –She says when I send a message to Two-Twelve after he asks if everything is alright.-
“For now, but once I tell him that…”
“I’m sorry… I’m just scared!”
I don’t know what else to do but cry. Inari looks confused but she just hugs me without saying a word letting my cry on her shoulder. I don’t know when I feel asleep, but I must have at some point because when I wake up my head is resting on a pillow on the floor of a room in Inari’s house.
Inari: “You’re finally awake? Are you feeling any better?”
“I’m… Excuse me!” –I quickly run to the bathroom.-
Inari knocks on the bathroom door asking me if I am alright. When I answer the door she has a concerned look of her face.
Inari: “Are you sure you are ok? I should message Daddy.”
“No, please… I will be fine in a little bit.”
Inari: “But as Daddy’s boss monster you shouldn’t get sick.”
“It’s ok, I’m not sick…”
Inari: “But I heard you… Wait then…?” –The confused face on Inari then quickly changes to one of shock.-
“I don’t know how to tell him…”
Inari: “But I thought… How could you do that to Daddy?”
“That’s why I can’t tell him! I didn’t do anything! Everyone just assumes it was me, but I am not the one that broke our wedding vows! Nobody cares what it did to me after he was with another woman, but the moment they think I cheated on him they act like this!” –I say forcefully with tears in my eyes.-
Inari: “I’m sorry… But then how…?”
“I thought you didn’t want to know?”
Inari: “I know Daddy is different, but if it was as simple as all that you wouldn’t be acting this way…”
“We just don’t know… With the old gods poking around in Two-Twelve’s business, the rings like the one he gave you changing the rules for dungeon cores, or related to his dungeon, we just don’t know. I can’t even be certain that it is a normal baby!”
Inari: “You have to tell Daddy!”
“You think I don’t know that?! Everyone keeps telling me that, and of course I have to tell him, but how do you tell the love of your life that you are pregnant from who knows what from who knows where?”
Inari: “If you didn’t do anything Daddy won’t hold you responsible, just like you can’t hold him responsible what happened after his memories are gone.”
“If I could believe that I wouldn’t have a problem, but I do hold him responsible for what happened! I know his memories were gone, but I still can’t help how I feel… Is love really as flimsy as a couple of memories? I can’t help to feel if he truly loved me, even without his memories he would still love me… Yet he wasn’t even gone a few months and he just moved on…”
Inari: “I thought you and Daddy worked through all that already, and was happy again.”
“I thought so too, but when everyone kept accusing me of breaking my vows with Two-Twelve everything just came back…”
Inari: “I have seen the way Daddy looks at you, and even after his memories of you were taken from him he still found you, and fell in love with you all over again, doesn’t that count for something?”
“I understand, believe me. I do… But there is just that feeling deep down that every time it comes to the surface I have to feel that pain again…”
Inari: “Then tell Daddy, about the baby, and about everything. If you don’t tell him, then he can’t help you work through it.”
Inari gives me a big hug, but then I have to rush back into the bathroom. This time when I come back out she is smiling.
Inari: “I’m sorry Mommy, but I sent Daddy a message and told him you have something really important to talk about. It may be hard, but I know Daddy can handle it, he puts up with all of us after all, doesn’t he?”
“I guess I put it off long enough…”
Inari: “Don’t worry Mommy, even if the baby comes out green and furry, I don’t think Daddy would love you any less.”
“That’s not helping… But thanks for putting up with me.”
Inari: “Of course Mommy.”
I give Inari one last hug and then use [Gate] to return home. I find Azami and Kaelmathis in the living room, but I don’t find Two-Twelve till I enter our bedroom. He is sitting on a small bench at the foot of the bed pulling on his boots.
“You’re still here?”
Two-Twelve: “I didn’t sleep in Shima, so it’s still quite early, you know…”
“I guess you are right…”
Two-Twelve: “Are you alright? You had me a little worried by the way you were acting yesterday.”
“I love you, you know that right.”
Two-Twelve: “I would hope so…”
Two-Twelve: “I love you too.”
I quickly make my way across the room lightly hitting his shoulders as I say. “Then why did you do that with Listel?!”
Two-Twelve quickly wraps his arms around me confused as I start to cry. “I’m sorry. Kline said it was ok, I didn’t really think it was something you would get upset about though…”
“Not Scylla’s Listel, why did you break your vows to me with Laura’s Listel?”
“Why did you cheat on me!?”
Two-Twelve: “You know what happened, it’s not like it was something I had planned on doing.”
“If you really loved me it shouldn’t have happened!”
Two-Twelve: “Where is this coming from? I can’t help I lost my memories, and no matter how much I love you it doesn’t change the fact that I didn’t remember it.”
“It also doesn’t change the fact it hurt me!”
Two-Twelve: “I don’t know what else to say except I’m sorry…”
“I know this doesn’t make any sense… I just can’t help that it still hurts.”
Two-Twelve: “No, I made light of what happened… I didn’t understand when I first returned, and by the time we worked though it I even joked about it, but I never stopped to think just how hard it must have to deal with.”
“Even after all that you know I still love you right?”
Two-Twelve: “I know I am not exactly the same as I was before, but even when I didn’t remember anything when you held me or I could smell your scent in the bed, or when I saw you I just knew it would be alright in the end. I know that doesn’t make up for what I did without my memories, but that feeling was what brought me back, so no matter what pit of darkness I wind up in, I know that I will love you no matter what.”
“Then there is something I need to tell you…” –I say pulling my face from his shoulder and meeting his eyes with my own.- “I’m pregnant.”
The emotions the wash over his face are many, and although I can tell he had to think the same thing as everyone else, he never voices it.
Two-Twelve: “That’s wonderful. When Scylla had her baby it was so hard on you, I am glad you will finally get to experience that as well.”
“But I’m not sure I can, because I don’t know how it happened. I know after what I said it must of sounded like an excuse for making up for something I did, but it wasn’t I promise. I just wanted you to know that hurt me so much, and I would never bring that hurt to you.”
Two-Twelve: “I don’t understand…”
“I don’t know how to explain it. That ring you use to gain xp, have you ever worn it to bed?”
Two-Twelve: “I never thought of that, but no I always take it off with the rest of my equipment.”
“If it wasn’t the ring, then maybe it is something the old gods did? The one woman that gave us the warning spoke of your children, but when she spoke of Inari, she said the dungeon core you trained. She also said the answer to the problem was something you might wake up one morning with the answer to. Maybe this was what she was talking about.”
Two-Twelve: “If that is true, how can we even be sure what it is?”
“I don’t know, but that wasn’t the only other conclusion we came to either. Roxy thinks it might be the Divine Being that you tried to summon.”
Two-Twelve: “That would explain, what happened to the xp, but do you think that is really possible?”
“Honestly, I was hoping it was the ring that caused it. I don’t know what to do if it is some kind of monster or something the old gods placed in me…”
Two-Twelve: “What do we do now…?”
“I don’t know….”
Two-Twelve: “Do we just let it grow in you then?”
“Do we have a choice?”
Two-Twelve: “What if it puts you in danger?”
“There are spells that can be used to remove it, at least for a normal pregnancy, but if somehow it really is our child…”
Two-Twelve: “Then you want to wait?”
Two-Twelve: “Then that’s what we will do.”
Two-Twelve then kisses me.
Two-Twelve: “What is it?”
“I love you…”
Two-Twelve: “I love you too.”