I haven't written a story in a few months, and thought I might write a small one before attempting bigger stuff, so here it is. This is based off a song by Miku Hatsune, also named Ievan Polkka. So, enjoy. If you have comments, please don't hesitate to drop me a VM or PM.
The sound of a polka drifted over the fence and field to Ieva's house. Me and Ieva tapped our feet to beat. Grinning at each other, I could tell what Ieva was thinking. Ieva tossed her blue hair, a wild look in her eyes, one her mother hadn't been able to squash. Ieva was my best friend, and had been so for ten years. Her hair was a rich brown, but she had snuck out and dyed it that startling bluish-gray, much to her mother's chagrin. Ieva's turquoise eyes gleamed against the white alabaster of her skin. I was so plain next to her. My own hair was a dark red and hung in loose curls when I let it down. I envied Ieva her stick straight locks. They looked so shiny and soft. My eyes were a boring brown, my skin lacking the luster and translucency that Ieva's had. We were still dressed in our school uniforms which consisted of black skirts, white sleeveless blouses, green ties and black knee high socks. We wore black high tops to match. Ieva and I had our hair up in pigtails on either sides of our heads. Our feet tapped against the bright green grass, keeping time to the music. Ieva's mother, who was hanging up laundry on a clothesline, kept one eye, the same shade of Ieva's, on us. She had her brown hair piled on the top of her head. Ieva's mother wore a plain white dress that went down to her ankles. Ieva's mother was a stout catholic, and didn't believe in having fun. Well, what Ieva deemed 'fun', which included parties and boys. Ieva was much more daring than I, and where I was content standing back, watching life, Ieva ran to meet it head on. Ieva waited for her mother to turn away before flipped the end of a blue pigtail over her shoulder. If the look on her face was anything to go on, Ieva was hatching a plan. She grinned, her teeth straight and white. My hand automatically flew to my mouth. I had to wear braces for the next year so my teeth would be completely even. I was still self-conscious about them, though. The music wailed on, carried on the breeze. I looked away from Ieva, my gaze scanning the prairie. There was green grass as far as the eye could see, with skies so blue, the color didn't seem real. It was a hour or so till sunset, so Ieva and I still had time to talk. If that was what she had in mind, that is.
"Tsukiakari," Ieva whispered my name, taking extra precautions so her mother wouldn't overhear us. "Wouldn't you like to see where that wonderful music is coming from?" Ieva's eyes gleamed with mischief. I did want to see where that music was coming from, and how someone could make so sweet a melody. I smiled hesitantly at Ieva. "I thought you would. Let's go." Ieva started to stand, but my hand on her arm stopped her.
"Ieva, what if your mother sees? She'll have our hides!" Ieva and I were almost eighteen, and Ieva hated being stifled by her mother the way she was. She snuck out from underneath her mother's death glare whenever she had a chance, taking me with her more often than not.
"Oh, I can take care of that." Ieva glance back at her mother before pulling out two red and white Poke Balls. Ieva was an avid Pokémon lover and had plenty of them. I only had one, a Weedle named Pretzels. She threw the Poké Balls, and they burst open mid-air. Red light washed over the lush green grass, turning white as the Pokémon were released. Two small black Pokémon raced up to her. They resembled foxes and had big blue eyes, red paws, red tipped tufts of hair on their heads, and three red marks above their eyes. They were the Pokémon known as Zorua. Ieva loved all Dark type Pokémon, which explained why she had two Zoruas.
"Hamilton, you stay here and use your Illusion ability to make it look like Tsukiakari and I are still here." The first small Zorua nodded, and hopped onto the wall where we were sitting. The stone wall separated Ieva's house from the prairie, where my house was farther down. "Warwick, you're coming with us. Use Illusion to cloak us." The second Zorua nodded, just as serious as the first. Ieva scooped him up and the little Pokémon began to glow white.
"This feels kind of wrong," I told Ieva, hesitating.
"Nonsense," she said back to me. To her mother, Ieva called, "Hey, mom! Me and Tsukiakari are going to sit out here and talk a while longer!"
"Don't stay out too long, Ieva." Her mother told us sternly. With that said, she turned around and walked into the house. Presumably to lock herself in her room to knit and listen to her music.
"Hold on to me," Ieva cautioned once she was gone. I laid my hand on her shoulder.
Ieva was touching Warwick, so she would be included in the illusion. If I wasn't touching either of them, I would be left out. Trying to stifle our laughter, Ieva, Warwick, and I all walked off in the direction of the music. It all seemed too easy. Would we really get away with this? Well, it would remain to be seen. There was smoke in the sky, and soon we were lead to a giant bonfire. Ieva and I stared at all the people in wonder. They were gathered around the fire, dancing and singing in a foreign sounding language to the ditty. The words tripped over their tongues, almost rolling over their teeth as they spilled out. A few feet away from us were two boys about our age. One played the fiddle and the other was dancing. They shared the same spiky brown hair, eyes as green as the grass underfoot, and tanned skin. They looked were tall, but it hard to tell, and dressed alike in white button-up shirts, blue jeans, and black boots. There was still light left since the sun hadn't yet set. Warwick broke the illusion, making us visible to the people partying. Ieva grinned at me before handing over Warwick. I gaped at her as she raced off to dance. I pushed my way through the crowd that had made a circle around her. The fiddler and other guy moved closer to get a better look at Ieva. Ieva was smiling, the fiddle wailing as people crowded around to wish her luck. The one boy who wasn't playing the fiddle had joined the circle with Ieva, and they were dancing, their feet a blur. It was so hot, but no one seemed bothered by it. After all, who cared when they were dancing like that? I managed a laugh as Ieva let loose a string of curse words. She had missed a step in her dance, loosing her concentration. The boy she had danced with placed a hand on her shoulder and leaned closer to whisper in her ear. Ieva grinned, her teeth flashing white. She grabbed his hand and led him through the crowd to me. I turned red as he smiled at me.
"This is my friend, Tsukiakari!" Ieva had to shout over the music.
"Oh, that's a cool name!" The boy yelled back, but his eyes were glued to Ieva.
"Thanks." I mumbled, my words swallowed by the fiddle's notes. I didn't take any offense toward the boy. After all, who would notice me when Ieva was there? Ieva was so full of life and I was just dull in comparison.
"Hey, I'm Ryan! I get the feeling you're shy, Tsukiakari! How would you like to sit with my brother? He's the fiddler and he'll keep you company!"
"That sounds okay, I guess!" I called out to him. Ryan pointed out the place where his brother was sitting before taking off with Ieva. I sighed and Warwick looked up at me, a look of pity shining in his blue eyes. I slid my hand over his silky fur, smiling a bit. I took a step and tripped over someone's foot. I let out a shriek and Warwick went flying as I fell. I crashed into someone, pain exploding in my chest. I let out a groan and opened my eyes. The music had stopped. I didn't realize why until I looked at who I had fallen into. It was Ryan's brother, the fiddler. Up close, I could see his eyes were a pure green, without a fleck of another color in them. Warwick came trotting up to us, an indignant look on his tiny face. I tried to stand up, but the fiddler and I were tangled together. He let out a light laugh, much to my eternal embarrassment. The fiddler unhooked his legs from around mine and slid out from under me. After he was standing, he helped me to my feet.
"Wow, little lassie." He smiled. His voice had a strong lilt to it, one that I hadn't noticed his brother having. "You took quite the spill there. Are you all right?"
"Yes," I mumbled, looking at my feet. I could feel the red blush creeping up my neck to spread across my face. "I tripped. I'm sorry I crashed into you." My words came out sounding like a whisper. Ugh, I was so bad at this! Why couldn't I be normal and not blush when anyone talked to me?
"Oh, that's no problem, lass. What is a problem is the fact that you weren't dancing. If you had been, maybe you wouldn't have tripped." His words were designed to lessen my embarrassment, but I blushed even harder. Oh, I wished I could disappear. "It was a joke, lass. You doona have to be embarrassed. I'm Roark. What's your name, pray tell?" The fiddler, Roark, retrieved his fiddle from where it laid on the ground.
"I'm Tsukiakari," I peeked up a bit, trying to get a good look at him before he caught me looking.
"You know, looking up at me won't set you on fire. Why doona you try it?" I squeezed my eyes shut before lifting my gaze to his face. By now, everyone was staring at me and Roark. And why not? They couldn't dance because the music had stopped. Roark righted his stool and sat back down, drawing his bow across the fiddle's strings. The sweet strains of that song Ieva and I had heard over at her house. I smiled, bending to pick up Warwick, who had parked himself at my foot, waiting patiently for me to pick him back up. As if his paws were too dainty to touch the ground. Warwick swiped at the end of a pigtail with one red paw. Okay, it seemed he liked my hair.
"Thank you for not making a big deal out of my clumsiness," I whispered into Roark's ear.
Without missing a note, he replied back, "You said it yourself, you were tripped. I doona call that clumsiness. Why doona you draw up a seat keep this lonely fiddler company?" I smiled, and drew a nearby stool over to where Roark was sitting. Warwick let out a little yip as I settled into my seat. Once the music had resumed, everyone forgot about my little fall and returned to the task at hand; dancing till the dawn.
Ieva gave Ryan a come-hither glance, and crooked her finger at him. They were in danger of being swallowed in throng of people, but were still dancing like they were losing their minds. Roark's music was carried by the wind over the prairie and magnified by the otherwise silent night. Ieva laughed as she and Ryan clasped hands. They were dancing closer to the flames, the red, yellow, and orange tongues flickering out to try and taste their skin. The sun had set hours ago, it seemed to Ieva, but was really only thirty minutes in reality. But Ieva wasn't in reality. She was dancing between the layers of physical and spiritual worlds, and she had never been more alive, Ieva thought. She could feel Ryan's body bumping against hers in the dark as they danced. Overhead, a thousand stars glittered like distant diamonds, shining for only her. Ryan taught Ieva more dance moves, then in time, taught her tongue to dance. They stood interlocked as time raged on around them. When they finally broke apart, gasping for air, Ieva could see something foreign in Ryan's eyes. It was something she didn't know, but wasn't scared of. Her heart pounded in her chest, threatening to burst free of its confinements, like Ieva herself had done so only an hour and half before. Ieva could see Tsukiakari sitting with Roark, laughing. Warwick sat still in her lap, observing the people as they danced. Ieva looked up at Ryan when he placed a hand on her shoulder. Ieva could feel the pressure of his hand through the cloth of her blouse.
"Ieva, would you like to go somewhere private with me? So we could talk?" There was hope in Ryan's eyes, hope that she would say yes.
"Sure!" Ieva agreed, her naiveté shining in her eyes.
I looked around, frowning. Where was Ieva? Come to think of it, I hadn't seen her or Ryan in a while. I looked over at Roark, who had his eyes closed, absorbed in the music he was playing. Warwick whimpered in my lap. The little black and red Pokémon stood up, walking around in a circle before settling down, his tail wrapped around his hind legs. I scratched his head, feeling his fur bunch as I did so.
"Roark, I'm going to find my friend Ieva and your brother. I think they went off somewhere together." I said, my mouth close to his ear.
"Hang on, and I'll come with you," Roark held up a hand and a man ambled out of the crowd. He was huge, with a thick red beard that matched the hair on his head. He smiled at me. Roark paused the music to hand over his fiddle. The man started playing a fast paced beat, one that I believed to be called a jig. "Let's go." Roark tucked my hand into the crook of his elbow and led me through the crowd of people. It was quite chilly outside, and I could feel gooseflesh start to stand out on my skin. Why hadn't I changed out of my school uniform before going over to Ieva's? I lifted Warwick up until he was sitting on my shoulder. He dug his small claws into my blouse to stay upright. Roark and I had to duck, dodge, and jump over flailing limbs. We must have walked around the bonfire at least ten times, but we didn't spot Ieva or Ryan. Where had they gone? I could feel panic rising up in my chest, trying to cut off my air supply. What was I supposed to say if I returned to Ieva's house without her? What would her mother think?
Ieva pulled away from Ryan. He had one leg folded, the other curled around where she was sitting, which was between his legs. She was struck by the intimacy of the pose. Honestly, it excited her, being this close to a boy. The feeling was unknown to her, which made it all the more thrilling.
"Ryan, don't you think Roark and Tsukiakari will be looking for us now? We've been gone an awfully long time." Ieva rubbed the palms of her hands against the chilled skin on her upper arms. Ryan replaced her hands with his own. Ieva's skin heated where his hands touched. But worry had long replaced the tug of desire in her stomach.
"It's okay, Ieva. Roark is a big boy and he won't let anything happen to your friend. I promise." Ieva nodded, his words lessening the hold concern had over her. Relaxed, Ieva allowed herself to be pulled back into Ryan's embrace.
Roark and I sat back down on our stools. The man Roark had given his fiddle to was making the bow dance across the strings, the resulting notes short and loud, but just as good as Roark's music. Roark wrapped his arm around me, pulling me into his side. Warwick had fallen asleep on my shoulder, his little claws still hooked in my blouse. He had wrapped one of my pigtails around his body like a blanket. I gently unwrapped it and tossed the hair behind me so he wouldn't be tempted to do it again.
"Don't worry, Tsukiakari. We'll find your friend and she'll be perfectly fine, and all your worry would have been for aught." Roark tried to comfort me. He didn't mention that she should be safe with his brother, which made me frown. Didn't he trust his brother?
"Ieva's mother will probably know that we're gone by now. Ieva will have hell to pay, and then her mother will call my mother, and we'll both be in trouble."
"We will find her, Tsukiakari. What does your name anyway?" I knew the question was said to take my mind off of Ieva, but I looked up at him away.
"Moonlight." I sighed. Some people couldn't even pronounce my name, so it made me wonder when Roark asked me what it meant. The music suddenly stopped, and we both looked up.
"This is when the real fun begins," Roark said, shaking his head. "But I think this is a type of fun that you shouldn't see. Come on, I know a place we can go."
"Is it far?" I asked, suddenly scared. It was really dark, and there were wild Pokémon out on the prairie.
"No. It's no more than a few stone's throw away, lass." Roark clasped my hand in his, his larger one swallowing mine completely. I could feel the callouses on his palm and fingers; they rubbed against my skin. It felt weird. We walked, the grass squeaking under our feet from the dew that rested on the blades. When I was just about to ask if we were there yet when I saw a shape looming out of the dark. Roark seemed to know where we were going because he walked us around the shack and pulled open the door. There was a small kerosene lamp lit on the floor. The windows were blacked out, and the shack was empty. Well, almost empty. I saw Ieva and Ryan laying on the leaf covered floor, their limbs intertwined. Ryan was sprawled over Ieva, his brown hair damp with sweat. I knew what had happened in an instant. Roark grabbed my arm and whirled me around, hugging me tightly to his chest.
"Doona look, lass. You'll just upset yourself." I nodded slowly into his shirt. Ieva and I had always talked about boys and intercourse. I hated the S word, so we had always called it intercourse, or coitus. Our verdict had been to never sleep with somebody until we were married, so how could Ieva renege on her word like that? We had promised. I closed my eyes to try and hold back the tears.
"Just let them come, lass. You'll feel better if you. I know you feel like you don't know Ieva anymore, but she will still be the same. Just a bit... Wizened." I let out a shuddering breath as the tears coursed down my face. They were absorbed by Roark's shirt, making it damp. When I was done blubbering, Roark used a small square of cloth from his pocket to mop all traces of tears from my face. He held it to my nose and I got a whiff of lime and cherry.
"Blow," he ordered. I blew my nose loudly, but Ieva and Ryan still slept. I guessed their act of coupling had been exhausting. They were covered with an old moth eaten blanket. Roark used the toe of his boot to nudge Ryan in his side. Ryan muttered something intelligible and waved a hand.
"Ryan!" Roark snapped. Ryan lifted his head. He stared at us for a couple seconds before his eyes flew open. He cursed. Roark grabbed me by my shoulders, careful not to disturb Warwick, and steered me out of the shack. The air was freezing, and the grass crackled as we stepped onto it. I shivered.
"Thank you for not making fun of me when I cried. It was pretty stupid."
"Crying is never stupid. Tears come from the soul, and to hold them in would be to stifle your emotions, which you should never do." Roark smiled at me. He rubbed a lock of my hair between two of his fingers before releasing it. A warm feeling spread through my body when he smiled at me.
"Do you live around here, Roark?" I asked, curiosity rearing its annoying head. My mother had always said I possessed more than my fair share.
"Yes. I live a mile or so away from where we held the bonfire. Ryan and I moved her with our family from Ireland." Roark tucked his hands into the back pockets of his jeans and rocked back and forth on his heels. The door to the shack opened, interrupting Roark and I. Ryan and Ieva were dressed, Ryan holding the lamp. Their hair was messy and full of leaves. Their had been a layer of them covering the floor in the shack. Ieva gave me a sheepish look. She stuffed her hand into the snarled blue locks of hair and tried to smile. Since we had been best friends for ten years now, I could tell she was trying to hold back tears. I slid my arm around her shoulders, keeping quiet. I didn't know what to say to her. I was mad because she had done the nasty with a boy she hardly knew, but I didn't want to make her feel horrible about it. Ieva was my friend and despite her bad decision, I needed to show her that I wasn't about to judge her. Ieva leaned into me, her shoulders slumped. I could feel her sadness. It was wrapped around her like a cloak and so thick, you could cut it with a knife.
"Where do you live?" Ryan asked, his voice solemn.
"Ieva lives about a half mile from here, but my house is farther down the prairie." It had been a long night, filled with surprises, and I just wanted to crawl into my bed to sleep for a couple days. Ryan and Roark walked a few paced behind us, talking in hushed voices. I could barely make out their words. Roark was reaming Ryan for taking advantage of Ieva. Overhead, the sky was turning pink. The sun was starting to rise. Had we really been out for that long? Soon, we came to the three feet high stone wall that wrapped around Ieva's house. Her house was two stories high, and completely white. It looked like a box with windows. We came up on the side of her house. I could see the flowers planted in her front yard, and the clothesline in the back. Ieva's mother was standing on the other side of the wall, waiting for us. Her brown hair was caught up in a bun on top of her head, her eyes narrowed. One look at Ieva and Ryan, and she knew what had taken place like I had.
"Ieva, don't cry," I said, patting her on the back. Ryan lifted her up over the wall while Roark help me. They remained on the prairie, hands tucked into their pockets. Ryan looked a bit cowed, but stood tall.
"You stupid girls!" Ieave's mother cried, anger lighting a fire in her eyes. "How could you be so callous as to run off and... And... Fornicate with these heathens! Have you no sense?"
"Actually, I didn't do any fornicating," I said. Ieva hung her head, knowing she couldn't make the same claim. Immediately, I felt bad for my comment.
I gently shook Warwick awake as Ieva's mother screamed at her. I unhooked his claws, freeing him from my blouse. I was glad to be forgotten for a moment because Ieva's mother scared the living hell out of me. I knew for sure that Ieva would be locked in her room for years with only prayer beads and a Bible for this. He mother would not stop until Ieva's spirit was broke. Warwick yawned and stretched in my arms, his little paws stretching toward the sky. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see Ryan shifting from foot to foot, a muscle working in his jaw. He was mad. Roark stood next to him, as tranquil as a forest. They were so different, even though they looked almost exactly alike. Warwick caught hold of a pigtail with his claws and wrapped it around his paws, squealing in delight. As I released my hair from his hold, a loud crack filled the air. I looked up to see Ieva's mother standing over Ieva. Her hand was raised to strike Ieva again. Ryan cursed and vaulted over the stone wall, Roark on his heels. Ryan snatched back Ieva's mother's hand, a look of outrage on his face.
"Don't you dare 'it her," he cautioned. There was a promise in his voice, a frightening one.
"I will discipline my daughter as I see fit, you devil! You will not come near Ieva again!"
"No, ma'am. You see, you have it wrong. You will be the one never coming near Ieva again because I plan to take her far away from this place." As Ryan spoke, I helped Ieva to her feet.
"Ieva, go pack only what you wish to not leave behind. Ryan will honor his word and take you away from here if you want. All you have to do is say so."
"Hell, you can even nod," Ryan broke off from his screaming match with Ieva's mother to say that to Ieva, who nodded on reply. I smiled at her, even though I was uncertain of the risk she was taking. But anywhere was better than with her mother, right? I saw pain flash in the eyes of Ieva's mother when Ieva shook her head, and suddenly wasn't so sure of what I had just thought. But just as soon as it had disappeared just as fast as it had appeared, replaced by the steel of anger.
"Ieva, don't you dare! You will atone for your sins!" Her mother shouted. Ieva ignored her mother and disappeared into her house. Ryan waited until Ieva was out of sight before he lowered his voice a few octaves till it was no more than a rumble.
"Now stop that noise or I won't be responsible for what I do. If you go quietly and stay in your house, you won't get hurt while Ieva and I get out of 'ere." His brogue was thick when he was mad, and he slurred his H's when he talked, like Roark.
"You try to take my daughter away, and I'll hunt you down." Ieva's mother said.
"One thing I tell you is you won't trap me, no, you won't find me an easy catch. Travel to the East and West but Ieva and I are going to marry and you'll never 'ear from us again. So doona make the mistake of thinking that you will."
Ieva came out of her house lugging a suitcase behind her. Ryan took it from her and wrapped an arm around her shoulders. He tossed the suitcase over the wall and helped Ieva over as well. I waved goodbye to my best friend as she walked away with Ryan. Only me, Warwick, Roark, and Ieva's mother were left standing outside. Ieva's mother went inside after a few moments, probably to pray.
"Well, Tsukiakari, what do you want to do?" Roark asked as he grabbed me around the waist to lift me over the wall. It was such a sweet thing to do. My skin tingled from when he touched me and I felt giddy inside, like something amazing was about to happen.
"I dunno. Wanna meet my parents? They should be up already."
"That sounds like fun." Roark smiled at me and picked up Warwick, who let out a pitiful wail and stretched his paws toward me. Ieva hadn't taken him back before she had left, so I would keep him. It would be one of the only things I had to remember Ieva by. I had been carrying Warwick all night and my arms were tired. I smiled back at Roark and could feel something blossoming in my chest. It wasn't until we were walking down the prairie when I realized the most ridiculous thing. I had never known the name of Ieva's mother. I always just called' Ieva's mother'. I ruffled Warwick's fur and grinned up at Roark, unable to hide my excitement. Maybe last night hadn't a total waste after. My house could be seen after we walked for ten minutes. It was a sprawling ranch style house, painted bright yellow. My mom was standing on the stoop, her arms crossed over her chest. I had inherited my hair and eye color from my mom, who looked like a slightly older version of me. Her black jeans and white T-shirt were speckled with all sorts of colors, telling me that she had been painting.
"Hello, dear. It seems you have deigned to join us after all. And who is this young man?" My mom reached out and picked up Warwick. She held him up to her face to nuzzle the underside of his belly. My mom loved Pokémon.
"I'm Roark O'Malley. I see you have the musical lilt native to our country. What part of Ireland are you from, ma'am?"
"Dublin," my mom answered, an impressed look on her face. My mom may have been Irish, but my father was Japanese, which explained my name. "I'm guessing you're from the County Clair yourself?"
"You'd be guessing right, ma'am," Roark winked at my mom, then turned to me. "Sorry, Tsukiakari, but it looks like I'm going to have to be marrying your mother." I rolled my eyes and punched him lightly in the arm.
"Now, what was it that you two were doing all night? Ieva's mother called to last night. She was afraid that you were off fornicating, in her words." My mom smiled at that. She had Warwick perched on her shoulder like a little bird, his head held up high. My mom reached up to tangle her fingers in his fine fur.
"Ma'am, I assure you, your daughter and I weren't fornicating," Roark said, a smile fighting to make itself known on his face.
"Oh, I know that. Tsukiakari is much too proper for that. She'd need a bed, and judging by the smoke in the sky, you were outside the whole time. Now, why don't you tell about your night over some waffles? Tsukiakari hates pancakes, which is befuddling, since pancakes and waffles are the same thing!" My mom laughed and tweaked my nose. "Oh, and you can call me Erin."
I glanced at Roark, a small smile on my face. Thank the heavens my mom was so open minded. Dad always said she was a free spirit.
"I'm still marrying your mother. But just know, if she wasn't so great, you'd be first in line." Roark linked his fingers with mine. I rolled my eyes at his comment, but inside, I could feel butterflies flapping their wings, stirring up feelings I hadn't known I had. I silently thanked Ieva. If not for her, I wouldn't have just had the best night of my life.
Six months later, in Ireland
Ieva smiled as she read Tsukiakari's letter. Written in her perfect cursive, she went into detail about how she and Roark were getting married. The wedding would take place in a few months, and wouldn't be big, just their immediate family. Ieva's smile widened. It seemed Tsukiakari still hadn't gotten over her shyness.
"Hello, gorgeous," a voice said from behind Ieva. Strong arms slid around her waist, pulling her into a hard body. "How are you two doing today?"
"We're fine," Ieva leaned back into Ryan's embrace, her hands folding over his. He rubbed her swollen stomach. Their child was growing in there, and was already so big. Ieva was only four months along, but she looked like she was six.
"Hello, little Ryan or Ieva. How are things going along in there?" Ryan asked her stomach, his hands tracing circles. "Are you almost ready to come out? Your mother and I would like to meet you, and waiting another five months is going to be torture. So, how about we cut a deal, huh? You stay in there for four months and we can skip the last month. What do you say to that?" Ieva threw her head back, laughing at Ryan's antics. He was so silly, she thought.
"Don't you listen to daddy. You stay in there as long as you need, okay, baby?" Ieva smiled down at her extended belly. Ryan planted a quick kiss on her neck before letting go. They had only been married for six months, but it seemed like a few days to Ieva. Their house was small, but it had three bedrooms, and was quite nice. Her kitchen was barely big enough to turn around in, but Ieva kept it ruthlessly clean. The white cabinets and cupboards were scrubbed until they shined like new. The counters were blue tile, like the floor. The sink was pushed under the window, the stove next to the refrigerator at the end of the U shaped kitchen. A table was set up in the tiny space that served as a dinning room. It had two chairs and was made out of sturdy oak. They were in the middle of repainting the inside of the house yellow, so there were sheets and paint brushes everywhere. Ieva set the pot of stew she had been cooking on the table before sitting down.
"I love you, Ieva," Ryan said, like he did every night when they sat down to eat.
"And I love you, Ryan. And we'll be together forever."
"Well, duh!" Ryan scoffed. "I got you pregnant so you can't leave. What, you actually thought I wanted a kid?" Ryan joked, making Ieva laugh. Ryan reached across the table and clasped hands with his wife. They shared a smile before eating their dinner.