Deslea R. Judd
DISCLAIMER: Characters not mine. Interpretation mine.
ARCHIVE: Sure, just keep my name and headers.
SPOILERS/TIMEFRAME: William post-ep.
CATEGORY/KEYWORDS: Vignette, Mrs Van De Kamp POV.
SUMMARY: She will wonder.
MORE FIC: http://fiction.deslea.com
FEEDBACK: Cherished, and slowly but sincerely replied, at firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTES: Written for the Harem Late Season Women challenge, celebrating the expansion of XFMU. An experiment in future tense.
AWARDS/ELIGIBILITY: Spooky Awards 2003 eligible.
She will wonder.
In years to come, she will think about her son and the woman who gave him life. She will look over her shoulder and wonder whether she is there. The closed adoption was not her choice, and it is no longer the norm, and the woman's insistence upon it frightens her. Who was it that she didn't trust? Herself? The father? Someone else?
She will wonder about the people who knew her son, all those months before he came to their home. She will wonder how the woman broke it to them, and how they felt and what they thought. She will wonder if they got to say goodbye.
She will wonder if they hate her.
She will see tearful reunions on afternoon TV shows. Long-parted birth mothers and their sons. Mine, she will whisper, at one with discarded caretakers, who gave their lives to children surrendered through no fault of their own. Mine, she will whisper, because she has earned the right to say so, earned it tending his blood and his tears and her own empty womb.
In her kinder moments, she will think of the woman with empty arms and hold her close to her heart. She will wonder who mothered that woman, or if anyone ever did, and she will shed tears for her, this unknown woman who bore her son.
When her son is a man, there will be lights in the sky, a religious revival, a treaty. Stories will emerge from disparate cults of a chosen child, a lost changeling who foreshadowed their coming. There will be darker stories, too - stories of a threatened invasion, overthrown by the efforts of a courageous army, among them the changeling's mother and father. These will become the fairytales of a new age. She will dismiss the stories, and laugh when her son tells them to his children, but she will dream that she sees the lights in his eyes.
She will never know the truth of it. She will make inquiries, but she will learn that the ones who brought him to her were killed, and after that she will never ask again. Some truths, she will decide, are best left untold.
She will love him as no other, this changeling of hers, covet him like the purest of gold. She will think of the woman who gave him birth, and she will think of her sacrifice, and she will face her daily trials with strength anew, determined that this unknown woman's loss should not be in vain. When she ends her days, he will be at her side, and she will grasp his hand and say, "My son," and he will smile through his tears and say that, yes, he is hers.
But all of that is in the yet to be. For now, she watches him, sweet baby bathed in the light of the moon. She smiles to herself as he reaches out, ready to take life in his chubby little hands. She will wonder, oh, yes, she will wonder. But not tonight.
She switches off the light, and leaves him to sleep, for tomorrow is yet to be.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Written for a Harem challenge to write about a S8/9 woman, to celebrate the expansion of XFMU. I decided to combine this with an experiment in future tense. Not so sure how well it works, but it's out there for whatever it's worth. Visit the Harem at http:// harem.deslea.com and XFMU at http://xfmufic.tripod.com.