King Nicolas Ch. 1

The clouds of angry spirits swooped through the air, as the sun rose in the west. The stars aligned illuminating a now emerald Afari sky of the new earth. The air stood still and the animals of dawn were silent as if they were waiting for something. Howard was far from astonished, this was something he’d witnessed before on the birth of his daughter, Claire.

Now, the same phenomenon was occurring at the moment of his second child. He stood waiting with Claire outside of the villager’s straw hut, impatiently pacing from one end of the porch back to the other end. The straw hut was inside an orderless bubble, which kept the air outside from being inhaled. It wasn’t that the air was toxic or anything, but by law any straw hut outside city limits needs to be concealed in a giant bubble. Straw huts were essentially hospitals for immigrants of the planet.

Howard’s daughter, Claire, being ten at the time, had never seen her father behave in this manner. It was as if a weak-willed boy had taken the place of her tranquil papa.

Suddenly, he jumped.

“PUSH!” the shout of the nurse came tunneling towards the entrance of the building.
“MARA, YOU HAVE TO PUSHHHHHH!” the voice came again.
“I– I–I can’t, AHHHHHHH!” The cries of pain from his bride made his ears ring and shook his body into a paralyzed state.

Howard couldn’t move, his mind was racing towards a million bad scenarios a second and he couldn’t stop his vision from blurring. With his tear ducts on the brink of maximum waterworks, Howard couldn’t bring his mind back to the present situation. Claire, who had been relieved to see her father stop pacing, was more terrified of him standing in one place. In all her years alive, she had never seen a sight like this, her father was helpless and couldn’t do anything but breakdown on the porch.

His long brown hair was tied in a ponytail like it often was in the morning. He wasn’t built like a professional wrestler or anything, but he was definitely tall and had a great build for a man his age. He had grey stormy eyes that often changed to an ocean greenish blue, depending on his mood. Today, they were a mixture of both. He looked terrified out of his mind, but there was something about the color of his eyes that hung on to hope. Claire made her way towards her father and placed her tiny right hand into his big baseball mitt. Just like that, Howard had found his way back into the real world.

He glanced down at his daughter; she had her mother’s face and his brown hair, but her eyes were her own, one was gold and the other one was silver. She was quite beautiful, but her eyes struck terror in those that haven’t gotten to know her yet.
“Is mom going to be okay?” the child has been silent since the moment they arrived in front of the hut, so her voice startled Howard a bit.

“She’ll be fin–” As if on cue, the screams of Claire’s mother interrupted her still recovering father.


Claire looked at her father’s face and could tell he was back in shock. This time there was no amount of hand holding that would snap him back to reality.
“YOU’RE ALMOST THERE MARA, IT’S CROWNING,” the nurse began to bawl. This was enough to bring Howard back around, he took a few steps towards the hut entrance and immediately regretted it.

“STEIN YOU BETTER GET AWAY FROM THAT ENTRANCE!” the nurse barked. Howard knew better not to mess with a nurse who was at the end of her night shift, so he took a few steps back. As Howard made his way back to his original point, he looked at the background to see what was beyond the hut porch.

It was as it always is, a barren wasteland that was somewhat accessible for kids to play in. Howard hadn’t been on earth for such a long time and the last time was probably his wedding night. Afterwards, Mara suggested they head back to their home planet to start a family. Nine months’ later, baby Claire was born and they became parents.

Time sure flew by fast. Claire was now three grades higher than her age group and was speculating about what high school she wanted to attend. As smart as she is, she would probably be accepted by all of them. Howard could see she was getting older by the how little she spoke to him and her mother, but nevertheless he was proud to call her his daughter and he was sure she’d make an amazing big sister.

They’d been out here since two in the morning, it was ten now, and Howard was more than amazed at how little Claire has complained. Usually, she would talk his ear off whenever she felt bored or uncomfortable. In the eight hours that they’d been standing out there, she had only gone to the bathroom once and ate at the same time as he did. She was really growing up before his eyes and it was just so rewarding.
“WAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!” The song of a newborn could be heard across the land.

As soon as he heard the cry, Howard rushed through the entrance doors and made his way towards his new child. To the side of him, Claire hurried to keep up with her father, but because of her height speed walking, it was becoming more like a jog.
As they got to the room in the hut, they saw Mara holding the new child. Mara looked very much like her daughter, but with heavier circles. As her eyes looked up to her family, she smiled.

“Hi Claire, this is your brother Nicolas, make sure you take care of him.”
In her mother’s arms, Claire could see the child held in her mother’s hands and she instantly knew, he’d be far more trouble than he’s worth.

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