The rain poured relentlessly as Antony rushed through the cabin door passed the messenger. His heart pounded in anticipation and teemed with joy over the news. Completely absorbed by thoughts of holding his first child and kissing his wife, he hadn’t realized he’d forgotten to wear a coat. The sound of thunder rolled out of the sky and the wind blew furiously around him, but nothing could dampen the happiness of seeing his wife and child. He quickly trudged down the muddied path, his large boots making deep impressions the entire way. Antony finally reached the cabin, and opened the door in one fluid motion with a euphoric smile splashed across his face. The cabin was oddly quiet.
“They must be resting” he thought as he reached the door to Liera’s room and turned the knob. He entered quietly turning back to face the door as he closed it softly behind him.
“Antony?” Miriam gasped, her voice barely audible
“Are they sleeping?” He whispered still smiling and not looking at Miriam or the midwife. He turned toward Liera’s bed, the joy still emanating from his eyes, but as he turned to look at her, his eyes could not accept what was before him. Sprawled across blood stained linens lay Liera. Her once bright eyes now a cold dim stare, rosy lips tinged a faint blue, and her left arm hung ever so delicately and pale over the side of the bed. Antony shook his head in disbelief as his stomach twisted inside him making every breath feel impossible.
“This can not be,” he raised a hand to his mouth.
Rushing to kneel by her side he took her hand in his own. Tears flowed relentlessly as he rubbed the back of her hand against his face trying to feel her warmth again and sobs filled the room as reality brimmed over. There was no warmth left. Everything that was her had fallen away, and all that remained was an abandoned form shadowing her likeness and completely void of life.
“Why?” the words came out in a sharp drawn breath, tears streamed down his cheeks. His entire body shook and wept in despair. “WHY_____?” he bellowed this time his voice vicious and raw with an anger, and regret that made the mid wife and Miriam burst into a bewailing of sobs.
He tried to wipe the tears that now flowed freely from his eyes, as he gathered himself to stand.
“My child?” he sniffed,” Where is my child, Miriam? His eyes searched the room and returned to meet Miriam’s hollow gaze. She couldn’t respond as she burst into uncontrollable wails.
“Please Miriam,” he walked toward her with a glimpse of hope in his eyes, “Please, he said again, as if asking nicely would allow her to return everything taken from him, “I would very much like to hold our child, he continued.
“But my lord…” she replied between sobs “The child…
“Yes, my child. Where is he, Miriam,” his eyes searching hers?
“The child my lord… was born without breath,” she dissolved into tears once again.
Pain rippled over him washing him of all hope. The room narrowed as he reached for the door and made his way through the cabin in complete torment staggering out into the pouring rain. Despair crushed him from above with the weight of his loss and he fell to his knees clutching his hair with both hands and dispelling his anguish completely “No_____. no” he collapsed, tears and rain mixing together in a coupling of agony and sorrow.