BEFORE IT ALL BEGAN (II)
“Push!” a hurried cry echoed out into the forest amidst the shrieks and screams that seemed to drown out all other sounds.
“I’ll push your goddamn mother, this is your fault!!” an angry growl beckoned back, causing the former voice to shriek out as its bearer seemingly turned to tears.
“--y-you didn’t have to punch my face! My face is the only thing I’ve got going for me, and you know that!”
“You two, shut the fuck up!” an angry woman’s voice interjected between the two. “We don’t need your goddamn antics right now! Joy, ignore him and focus on giving the birth to this poor kid!”
In the midst of the woods, within a rather shabbily-built tent of branches and leaves, three people were currently present, while the tent itself was surrounded by a sea of others, all quietly mumbling something.
Inside, Joy lay still on her back, her legs heaved up and stretched, her face red like blood, teeth grit together. Lyro sat by her side, holding back a cry of pain over how firmly she held his hand; from time to time, he’d glance down and over the gown and regret it each time as he certainly could not quite grasp what he was seeing.
The third person was a middle-aged woman, who had a beyond angry expression as she tried to focus on both helping the kid come into the world alive, as well as ignore the two maniacs who would certainly ruin the poor lad.
“Alright, almost there!” the woman cried out, seeing the head pop out slowly. “Give it a shove! A good shove!”
“Hear her honey? A good shove! Just like I did--”
“SHUT THE FUCK UP!! AAARRRGHH!!!” Joy cried out as she flexed every muscle she had in her body, using the scream to alleviate the pain slightly. Soon, another cry joined in with the rest.
“Uwaaa--uwaaa--” the middle-aged woman held a baby boy in her arms, her angry expression swiftly changing into one of warmth. Cutting the cord, she slowly got up and walked over to a small tub of the water where she quickly washed the baby before wrapping him in a clean piece of cloth, handing him over to Joy who accepted him with a beaming smile on her face; in that moment, seemingly, she’d forgotten all about her own pain.
“It’s a boy, you two.” the middle-aged woman said with a smile, yet the reaction of the two left her stunned; there was pain and ache and pity as they looked at the baby, not joy, happiness and bliss as she expected. “W-what’s wrong?!” she asked quickly.
“Ah, it’s alright honey,” Lyro said, caressing Joy’s head. “Even if he won’t marry, he can just stay with us until we die. Afterwards, he can just become a hermit.”
“Indeed, indeed,” Joy nodded. “Such a shame...”
“... poor kid,” the woman, seemingly defeated, sighed and turned around to leave. “He never stood a chance...” as the woman left the tent, Lyro quickly swiped the boy from Joy’s arms as the latter swiftly fell asleep due to exhaustion. Pulling the blanket over her tenderly, he then switched over to the boy who had long since stopped crying, and was sucking on his thumb in sleep.
“No matter what, kiddo,” he said. “Dad’s never gonna let anything happen to you, you hear? I got lucky with mommy, so I’m sure there’s another insane woman out there that’s gonna be perfect for you. He he, look at you, suckin’ on that thumb. You really remind me of mom. Well, except the thumb part is much bigger in her case. He he. Khm, don’t tell her that, though. Okay? She gets real pissy if you point out just how perverted she is, you know? I don’t get it. I own up to my own perversions. Alas, some women are...” and thus, Lyro went on a long monologue of what men and women and world is like, properly projecting all his knowledge onto a baby who could neither understand him, nor really hear him as the boy was fast asleep.
Quite a few hours passed before Joy woke up groggily; though she still felt ache, it was much better and bearable. Glancing sideways, she saw Lyro reading something with the small baby sleeping in his lap. Her lips curled up in a tranquil smile, as she fought to sit up; Lyro noticed her only then, quickly shifting over to her and helping her up, giving her a small cup of warm water afterwards.
“How are you feeling?” he asked with a worried expression.
“I’ll live,” Joy replied. “How’s the baby?”
“Asleep,” Lyro sighed. “He slept through all of my life lessons, poor lad.”
“He just can’t seem to win.” Joy chuckled. “So, anyway, what should we name him?”
“... we have to give him a proper name,” Lyro said, his expression turning serious. “That coupled with his undoubtedly handsome face will at least give him some chance of success. We can’t scar the poor lad with a terrible name too.”
“So, something strong, awe-inspiring then.”
“Should I ask the elder?” Joy proposed.
“No! Goddammit woman, if we can’t even name our own goddamn kid, how are we ever going to raise him?!”
“Ah! Good point!” she exclaimed. “Indeed, we have to at least do this much. So, uh, how about... Lyro Junior?”
“Aii, no, no, then he would always feel like he’s living in my shadow,” Lyro shook his head. “And he’ll always just try to be like me.”
“Oh, yes. We don’t want that.”
“Even though I agree, it hurt how emotionlessly you said it.”
“So, do you have anything in mind?”
“Immblaoeath.” Lyro mumbled.
“What the fuck!”
“As I said, Imma--”
“I know what you said!!” Joy interrupted. “You can’t be seriously thinking of literally marking our kid for death!”
“What the hell?! I think it’s pretty cool!” Lyro exclaimed. “It’s short for immortal blaster of death!”
“... oh sweet lord...”
“It means he’s going to defy the death itself! Is there anything more badass than that?!”
“Ah, screw this. Let’s just name him after your dad.” Joy said. “That way at least we know he won’t get any strange nicknames at the very least.”
“Eh? Lyonel? Isn’t that a bit... uninspired?” Lyro said.
“I’ve already heard what your ‘inspired’ sounds like, and I’d rather not take any chances anymore.”
“... haah, you’re right. I suppose Lyonel sounds decent. Do you agree, Lyonel? Ah, right, he’s a sleep.”
“And also a baby.”
“Yup, that too.”
“It’s good that we settled on the name at last,” Joy said. “Ah, do you have any booze?”
“... c-can you drink it? Is it safe?” Lyro asked meekly.
“I’ve held back for over eight months because of you,” she growled. “So our kid doesn’t get dealt even worse cards. I think I deserve a goddamn drink.”
“Coming right up!” Lyro said as he fetched a gourd of wine and handed it to her. “Wanna d--”
“No.” she interrupted quickly.
“But you don’t even--”
“I’m not letting you fuck me.”
“... ah, and thus it begins...” Lyro lamented lowly.
“I can’t believe you even wanna stick it in just five hours after I’ve shat out a whole human out of it.” Joy said, looking at him strangely. “There’s something seriously wrong with you.”
“Hey!! How rude!” Lyro said. “There is absolutely nothing wrong with a healthy man expressing healthy interests in a god-endowed body of his wife! Would you tell your son that there’s something wrong with him when he finds himself stroking this and that without knowing why? Or would you properly explain it to him?!”
“You may be dumb in every single other aspect,” she added, chuckling. “But how in god’s name do you always have an answer when it comes to perverted topics?”
“... how can you not know that?” he asked, glancing at her angrily. “I’ve had to excuse every single one of my yearnings to you ever since I began having them!”
“Oh god, you can’t be serious!” she exclaimed right back. “What the hell do you mean ‘you had to excuse’?! You practically stuck it in the moment it could get up! I remember sneaking out of my parents’ house in the middle of the night because of your goddamn ‘yearnings’!”
“... oh shut up,” Lyro rolled his eyes at her. “Can you be more selective?! What about the dozens of times you snuck into my room and just decided to go at it while I was asleep?!”
“Y-y-you!!” Joy cried out in embarrassment. “Get out!! Get out right now!!”
“Oh, yeah, scream, like that’s gonna erase the past. He he.”
“I’ll erase you, you fucker!!”