Never Tear Us Apart
by Jackie Pena
A few months later..
Archie arrived home from a days' work and found Morgan in the bedroom in tears. He knelt down beside her.
"Darling, what is the matter?"
She took a deep breath to calm herself. "I can't bear this, I am not used to this way of life!"
"How do you mean my love?"
"I am used to doing things for myself. Getting dressed, cooking, cleaning, making the bed. I feel so bloody useless, this is not a girl born to privilege! I just can't sit around and do nothing, it drives me mad!"
Archie chuckled and wiped the tears from her eyes. "Darling, that is what the help is for, they are not here to make you feel useless. They are here to free you from household duties so you can enjoy things such as visiting your friends, taking a walk, reading a good book, whatever you want darling, you must let them do their work."
"Oh darling." He answered.
"I miss working for Mr. Cummings. Do not get me wrong, I am very happy and relieved that he has finally decided to retire and settle down with Mrs. Harris, but I do miss working in the bookstore."
"You visit Becca every day, do you not?"
"Yes, but I can't be there all day. The poor dear is a little over her fifth month of pregnancy, and she tires so easily. One minute we would be discussing about the baby, the next, she's nodded off to sleep whilst in the middle of the conversation!"
Archie laughed. "Poor Becca, but Charles has been deprived of sleep himself."
"Yes. He said Becca has been craving the most unusual things late into the night. Just last night she wanted walnuts with onions fried in butter. It was three in the morning!"
Morgan giggled. "Will you do the same when I crave such things in the middle of the night?"
"Of course, anything for my lovely Irish beauty!:
She cracked a smile. Her emerald eyes sparkled. "I am glad to hear it dear husband because our great love for each other is growing within me."
"What? You mean you're, are you sure?"
"Yes. My monthly bleeding is over a week late and I've had stomach sickness."
"Oh Morgan!" He picked her up from the side of the bed from where she sat, spinning her around.
"Good God, what am I doing!" he said. "Did I hurt you?"
Morgan giggled. "No my love." She caressed his handsome face."
"You are definitely not to lift a finger Madam, no matter how mad it will drive you, understood?"
"You do have a job nowthe mother of our children!"
Morgan rolled her eyes and shook her head. "Don't start. I am still perfectly able to take care of myself dear husband."
"But do not go into extremes, I mean it."
"Aye, aye Sir." She said and knuckled her forehead."
"You!" Archie gently swooped her in his strong but loving arms, and carried her to the bed. "I love you Morgan."
"And I you my love."
Their lips met for a kiss and turned into passionate lovemaking."
Morgan woke in the late night to find Archie out of bed and staring out the window into the darkness.
"My love, what is the matter? Can't sleep?" Morgan asked while sitting herself up.
"No darling, I am having one of sleepless nights, don't worry, I'm fine."
"Did you have one of your dreams?"
"No," he sighed. "just thinking."
He walked over to the bed and sat down on it and faced Morgan. "I want to be a good Father. I do not want to be like my own was with me, uninterested, uncaring, and cold."
"You will be a good Father darling. I know you will. You care too much to be any other kind."
"But what if it inherits my fits? I will never forgive myself."
"If our child does, then we will not love him any different, and you will not blame yourself, understood?"
He reached over and tucked a lock of her hair behind her ear. "I don't deserve you."
Morgan cracked a smile. "Don't be silly, yes you do."
Four months later..
Morgan's belly began to show evidence of the life growing inside of her. Archie always made sure he "kissed the baby before leaving to work and at night before going to bed and once a week he reads Sheakespeare's works to it.
Morgan began to feel more comfortable with being with on but still tried to do as much as she could. The servants adored her because she was king and was always gracious to them.
Archie arrived home one day to be greeted by the aromatic smell of baking. He smiled and headed for the kitchen. He found Morgan engaged in conversation with the cook.
"Mmmm, I smell cake!" He said.
"Darling, you're home." Morgan kissed him and he returned the gesture.
"Mum, should I go into town and get the lettuce for ye?' The cook asked.
"Yes thank you Constance."
The cook curtsied and left.
"May I ask why you are in the kitchen Mrs. Kennedy?"
"Baking a cake for my husband."
"What a lucky fellow he is. Do I know him?"
Morgan giggled and put her arms around his neck with her lips meeting with his.
She pulled away and put her hand on her belly.
"What's wrong?" Archie asked with concern.
She chuckled. "I felt it move!"
Taking his hand, she placed it on her swollen belly. The slight movement amazed him, made him smile.
"I guess he is as thrilled as I am that he is going to eat a piece of his mama's delicious cake!"
Archie and Morgan were awakened from their deep sleep in the middle of th night by one of the servants knocking on their bedroom door.
"Enter." Archie said.
"Sorry to disturb you Sir and Ma'am, but there is someone downstairs sent by Mrs. Carrington. She is in childbirth and has requested for Mrs. Kennedy to be fetched Sir."
Morgan's grogginess quickly subsided. "Oh dear, I am on my way!"
Morgan dressed as quickly as she could with Archie's help. He too was going.
The carriage headed for the Carrington's. Archie had asked the drive to ride carefully in concern to keep Morgan from experiencing a bumpy ride.
Morgan found a very worried Charles trying to tend to his wife.
"Becca, I'm here dearest." Morgan said while gong over to he friend.
Rebecca was flushed, breathing hard and in great pain. "Oh Morgan, I am so glad you could come."
Becca flinched and grabbed her belly from the pain. "Oh Morgan, I am afraid!"
Charles, I will tend to her. You look like you need to rest for a while. Why don't you go to the drawing room? Archie is there."
"I don't want to leave her. I just can't"
Yes you can." Rebecca said. "Besides, this is women's work. I will be fine my love. Morgan will take care of me. Go and rest."
"I am not tired."
"Then play a game of cards with Archie."
"Charles, I am not in the mood to argue at this moment now please go before I really get upset."
Rebecca finally lost her patience and picked up a book from the bedside table, and threw it at Charles narrowly missing her mark. He couldn't believe his eyes, neither could Morgan.
"No bloody go or the candlestick is next!"
"Alright dear." He said, and left the room with his head hanging down.
Becca's labor pains continued and were getting worse. The feeling of remorse of the behavior towards her husband immediately began to sink in and she started to cry.
"You must think I am a tyrant for treating Charles as I did. I feel terrible! Forgive me for my actions."
Morgan patted her hand. "I know Becca. Now worries." She dipped a cloth in the water basing to wipe Becca's brow.
Morgan was very worried. She too will be in the same predicament in about four months. Thoughts and questions went through her head. *Will I be in great pain like Becca?* * What if I become irritated with Archie and begin to throw things at him!" *Good Lord!*
"Becca hates me. It is my fault she is in so much pain."
Archie poured brandy into a goblet for his distraught friend. "No she doesn't. Becca does have a temper, I guess it comes from having MacMillan clan warrior blood running through her veins."
Both men laughed, making Charles feel a bit better.
"I felt useless in there with her. I couldn't ease her pain."
"I'm sure I will feel the same when Morgan gives birth, but Becca will be fine my friend, you'll see. How about a game of cards?"
Morgan asked the servants for hot water and fresh linens.
"Come on Becca, lets get you out of that bed to walk around a bit. It may help to bring the baby down more if you're on your feet."
"Why is it so warm in here?" Becca asked.
"It is an unusually warm night," Morgan replied. I will open a window."
They walked around the room in a slow pace. Rebecca grabbed on to things when the pains hit hard.
Many hours passed and down it was nearing dawn. Morgan and Becca were both exhausted, but they could not give up.
After a long night of drinking brandy, playing cards, and talking about old times, Archie and Charles drifted off to sleep and woke upon hearing a rooster crow marking the beginning of a new day.
"Dear God, she's still in childbirth Archie. Why do women have to suffer like that?"
"I don't know my friend. One of the unfortunate things about nature."
"Come on Becca, push!"
Becca was exhausted beyond means. She was running out of strength. "I can't, I am so tired Morgan!"
"Yes you can. Don't stop!"
Rebecca started to cry. "No I bloody can't! I can't push anymore damnit!"
"You're almost done dearest, you can do this, come on now, push!"
Rebecca pushed as hard as she could.
"I see the head, keep pushing, just one more big one for the shoulders!"
Rebecca obliged and screamed to get a big push out of her exhausted body and mind.
"You're doing fine dearest, it's almost out!" Morgan said.
The room filled with the sound of crying, an infants cry.
"It's a boy!" Morgan said. "Oh Becca he is beautiful!"
"Let me see him."
"Just a moment, I need to cut the cord and clean him up."
Morgan cleaned the crying babe with warm water. "Shhh, there, there little one. You sure have healthy lungs!, but I bet you will be happy once you are clean." Morgan dried the baby and then wrapped him in a clean blanket. "Alright, here is your mama."
Rebecca cried tears of joy. "Oh Morgan, he is beautiful. I love him so much already."
Morgan smiled. She cannot wait until she has the opportunity to hold her own and Archie's hold it her arms and feel the same joy as Rebecca.
"Now Becca, lets get you cleaned up, your hair brushed, and the sheets changed before I get Charles."
"I don't know how I could have done this without you. I am forever in your debt." Tears ran down Rebecca's cheeks.
Morgan walked over to her friend and took her hand. "Oh Becca don't cry. We are friends, well more like sisters actually, and I am at your beckoning call whenever you need me."
"Same here dearest Morgan."
Morgan entered the drawing room bringing Charles and Archie to their feet.
"Congratulations Charles, it's a boy!"
Charles let out a breath of relief and happiness.
Archie shook his hand. "Congratulations!"
"I will go to her." He gave Morgan a kiss on the cheek. "Thank you!"
Morgan went over to Archie's open arms. He nuzzled her hair. "Come sit down and rest my love, you must be exhausted." He said.
Charles was estatic. He kissed his wife over and over again. She risked her life to give him a child who will be loved and cherished by them both.
He carefully took the baby in his arms. "I think we should give you a name little one."
"Did you have one in mind my love?" Rebecca asked.
"Yes. Charles Alexander William MacMillan Carrington."
Rebeca cracked a smile. "A lovely name."
Charles left the room holding his son in his arms and went downstairs to the servants. "I would like you all to meet my son." They all congratulated him.
Then he went to the drawing room to show Archie who was holding his exhausted sleeping wife in his arms.
"Look Archie, isn't he the most beautiful baby you've ever seen?"
Archie carefully slipped out of his hold on Morgan to take a look. "Yes he is quite handsome, definitely takes after his mother."
"Very amusing, but your are right."
Charles looked over at Morgan. "Poor thing, she should be in bed."
Archie and Morgan went home. They were both exhausted, but Morgan more than Archie he at least got some sleep during the long night. He ordered one of the servants to prepare a bath for his wife. He knows how much Morgan loves to bathe. Archie helped her out of her clothes and then into the bathtub. The water was not too hot, not too cold, it was just right.
"Darling you don't have to bathe me, you've done too much already." Morgan said.
"I want to. You did all the work tonightwell almost all."
"Alright, if you insist," she said. "I'm afraid I am too tired to bathe myself."
Archie chuckled. "I am going to wash your hair also."
"Oh what torture!" She said jokingly and kissed him.
The bath was delightful. Archie helped her out of the tub, put a clean nightgown on her and then carried her to the bed.
"You are spoiling me Mr. Kennedy, but I am not protesting."
He laughed. You deserved to be spoiled.' He kissed her and tucked in her in. "Now get some sleep my love, I will join you shortly after I take advantage of the bath water before it gets cold."
After his bath, Archie put on his nightshirt and joined his wife in bed and pulled her to him to hold her in his arms.
To be continued..