Sorry about that. Again. There, I’ve taken a painkiller, so hopefully now I can tell you what happened next without splitting headaches or passing out. (one can dream, right?)
So Hope was left with a difficult situation. She was pregnant, and no matter how hard she tried she couldn’t get rid of the baby. The teas didn’t work, and when a doctor was called in to prescribe her something a little more potent all it did was make her pass out for a few hours.
Eventually her pregnancy became too obvious. Her usual customers didn’t feel like fucking a pregnant whore – some of them were trying to escape exactly that from home – and business slowly dwindled.
Now, they did look out for each other, and would never have put a good employee out on the street for n0 reason, but the customers were already starting to stay away now. Most regulars made it clear that they didn’t want to be with Hope, and requested others instead. She was no longer earning her share – and with the pregnancy, she ate more. And that was just before the baby was born. But after that? Once there was a screaming, crying baby in the house? It’s not a great turn-on, wouldn’t you agree? Unless you’re into that sort of thing. I’m not here to judge anyone, especially not since you haven’t judged me so far.
Or maybe you have, and are just here to see how this ends? Well, that part will be news for both of us since I have no idea either. I’m working on it, so we’ll both have to be patient.
But we won’t get there if we keep chatting, right?
So, as I was saying, Hope was welcome with the whores, her baby was not. They had already gone through this once as an exception with her, and no mother wants to watch her baby grow up to be a whore now, does she? So it had been decided for her. The baby had to go, or she had to go.
Before long Hope was too far along for an abortion to still be save, and she was left with no other option but to move out for the time being.
Yes, for the time being. She fully intended on coming back once her baby was old enough to stay home alone, to be quiet, or until she found someone else to look after the baby while she was at work. The father was no option, because as you’ve seen he wasn’t mentally stable enough to look after a child. That plus the magic and the baby was in all sorts of danger, so that wasn’t an option.
As much as she hated the idea of leaving the only home she had ever known, she was determined not to abandon her child like her own mother had done.
By the time her due date was just around the corner Hope had found a house. It was a small shack, barely big enough for one and not exactly comfortable, but it was enough for her to raise her baby in. If you remember, it was also more than Sosostra had had when she gave birth to little Hope, but of course Hope didn’t know that.
Hope was alone when her contractions started. The other whores had made a habit of visiting her regularly. Lucinda especially came over a lot to comfort her and to assure her that once the baby was born, she was more than welcome to come back. Hope really wanted to, too, but she had no idea what exactly would happen once the baby was there. She’d need money from somewhere, and without a job that wasn’t going to be easy. Before you ask: No, whores weren’t easily re-employed elsewhere, so you see, Hope didn’t really have anywhere else to go.
Fortunately for her, everything resolved itself very soon after the baby had been born. Or not so fortunately, really, given that this was what made her accept that her mother may have had a point when she had explained the curse to her in her letter.
Because, you see, the insane wizard had kept tabs on her. He was in love with her after all, and in his fragile mind at least he had every right to her and the baby.
But he was mad at her for keeping her pregnancy from him, for allowing him to be kicked out of the brothel and therefore kept away from her, and – most importantly – for trying to get rid of the baby. He had been very serious when he had threatened her life before, and hadn’t forgiven her for trying what she had tried to do.
So he stalked her. Being a wizard of no small talent (no great talent, either – just before you get the wrong idea about how good he really was) he had ways of watching her without her knowledge, and knew exactly when the baby had been born. The baby cried when it was hungry or tired, as babies do, but to him they were all aimed at him, asking him to come and save it from its irrational mother.
So he did. One night when Hope was sleeping, he found his way into the house, silenced the baby easily with a spell, and walked right out without Hope realising what was happening.
By the time she woke up and realised that her baby was missing, the insane wizard was long gone. I don’t know how exactly he managed it, but wizards have all kinds of ways of transportation, even over long distances. Even ones of neither small nor great talent.
Hope was searching for a while. She had not wanted to be a mother, true, but she had wanted to be a better one than hers had been. To her, having lost the baby to some madman was a big failure.
Well, it’d be a failure to anyone, but Hope took it hard. The other whores helped her look for a while, but they couldn-
Huh? Oh, right, you want to know how she knew who had taken her baby. Well, he had threatened her several times, claiming to kill her if she got rid of the child, and he was declared missing around the same time. Didn’t take a genius to figure out what had happened.
Now that the baby was gone, Hope returned to the whore house, and in time and with lots of love from Lucinda and the others she eventually recovered. But you can’t begrudge her for wondering every now and again what had happened to her child. In the hands of an insane wizard, well…
You could say that Hope didn’t have much hope.