Arthur growled wordlessly and Gaius subsided. Merlin lay still, wasted in the wake of his latest pain and wondered for the first time if he really had the strength to do this. He’d been undernourished for months, at first unable to hold onto anything he ate and later unable to force much of anything down his throat. He’d always been skinny but he didn’t think he’d ever been this thin before. He’d observed plump, healthy women, glowing with vitality killed off by the process of childbirth. He was about as far from healthy he could get. This was only his third contraction and he could already feel himself succumbing to exhaustion. He didn’t try to fight it; it was just so much easier to give in to the tug of sleep. Merlin was barely aware of the bed dipping beside him and a rough hand grasping his own in a gentle grip before he was lost to the darkness of sleep.
Sebastian was doing his regular nightly duties when all of a sudden he a got sharp pain in his side. He gasped in pain but just ignored it and went back to his duties. After a while, it was morning and Sebastian's pains went from bad to worse, but Sebastian just thought he was coming down with some demon sickness so he went to Ciel's room to wake him up.
Merlin doubted it. He gazed down at his son in fascination. It occurred to him to be thankful he hadn’t grown actual breasts while he was pregnant. He wasn’t sure how much his masculinity could endure, carrying a child was bad enough but breasts would have probably tipped him over the edge. He had lost all of his chest hair but that seemed a small price to pay.
He knew he was screaming, knew he wasn’t making sense, and certainly knew he wasn’t being a man about this but he didn’t care. All he could think about was the pain in his uterus, his back, and most alarmingly, in his penis and balls. He couldn’t see them over his gravid belly but he knew they must be swollen to the point of absurdity by the way everything down there felt like it was going to explode and not in a good way.
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