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Sarcantasy 128

By Grendelkin
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Last time, on…

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You thank the stranger who sniffed you for her complimenting your scent, and ask her whether she is here for her first pregnancy; if so, you believe you have something in common. She cocks her head and mouths the word 'first', then turns to the cat-eared girl with the orange hair and makes a questioning noise.

"One-birth," the girl translates, a little sullenly.

The blonde's eyes widen in comprehension -- and then she giggles.
"No, no!" she says. "Not one-birth. One-birth is in Home-lands, long and long ago. Still little. One-birth…"
Her smile falters for a moment, then returns, but there is a hint of sadness in her eyes.
"One-birth is dead-birth. Is alone for birth. It goes wrong. This happens."

The blonde shakes her head, then says: "Go herd for two-birth. Priests there. Hufflas-priests. Good god; god of baby-making; god of baby-birthing. Birth good. Pretty boy. Good."
Again, a hint of sadness, but the blonde keeps talking, her voice even: "Leave with litter-sister. Go weed-gather, river. Minotaur come. Minotaur hungry. Come back. Skulls. Bones. Crack for marrow. Meat roast and eat. Maybe litter-sister. Maybe pretty boy. Maybe no. No know."

"They do that," the orange-haired girl with cat ears says, quietly. "Minotaurs. For creatures with cow-heads, they're awful fond of meat, and Beast-folk..." -- she gestures at the blonde -- "...they make easy prey. They don't even know how to make clothes and tools, let alone armour and weapons."

"Meet painter-man," the blonde chatters on, "says he wants me as … as...?"
She glances at the other girl.

"Model," the orange-haired girl says. "He said he wanted you to be his model."

"Yes. Mod-del," the blonde agrees, happily. "Take to big stone nest. Painting. Playing. Then he says: "Stop eating. You get fat." I say: "Yes. Fat for babies." He says: "Go away. No come back until thin again." I go. Find big forest. Find stone nest-here. Good place. Now, have Prince-man babies!"

You feel one of your eyebrows rising in confusion.

The cat-eared girl sighs, and clarifies: "It's a cultural thing, as far as I understand it. In Beast-folk herds, if a female is pregnant but doesn't have a partner to provide for her, she can cozy up to the chief - if the chief's a male, anyway. No idea if female chiefs take pregnant females under their wing or just push them onto a lieutenant or something.
When Blondie here came to Vlad Tor, she lucked out; the temple of Black Rabbit donates money to the Healers to provide for any pregnant women who lack support. It's one of their commandments, believe it or not. Seems weird for a death-god to give charity to pregnant women, but it's a funny old world. They've set her up with housing and medical care until such time as she pops her podling. Or podlings, maybe; she's getting big. They're even paying me to help her with some stuff. Not enough, though.
Anyway, the Healers have tried to explain the arrangement to Blondie, I've tried to explain it to her, but she's … she's … not a complex thinker. As far as she's concerned, she's being provided for by the city's chieftain, and that's the Prince. In Beast-folk herds, if a pregnant female cozies up to a chief for care, any live babies she has also become the chieftain's. It's kind of like adoption, and the chieftain can puff up his chest in front of the other males because he has even more kids. Beast-folk see live offspring as a big status symbol."

"Prince babies," the blonde Beast-woman says, nodding happily.

"It's going to be a big hassle if she keeps saying that," the cat-eared girl sighs, shaking her head.

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Date Taken
Aug 23, 2019, 9:52:40 PM
Published:   |  Mature
© 2019 - 2021 Grendelkin
anonymous's avatar
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MichaelJohnMorris's avatar
I wanna give the pregnant lady a hug, and help her get through this. :)
HelenMcLaughlinArt's avatar
Daisy asks: "So with this Black Rabbit support, what happens when the babies are born? Will it just.... stop?"
Peebo-Thuhlu's avatar
Give the blond lass a comfrting hug. Though the sentiment might not carry through.

Try and get more general infroation out of orang ears. Something to boost 'KNowledge local' skill. ;)

Grendelkin's avatar
Okay. ^_^ General information on which subject(s), exactly?
Peebo-Thuhlu's avatar
Anything to help get a handle on what the frak is going on? :P

Grendelkin's avatar
Gonna need you to be just a little more specific... ^^;
Peebo-Thuhlu's avatar
Pretty sure our character's just as non=plussed about how the town works etc. ;)
anonymous's avatar
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