‘Aaron,’ Rita’s weak voice has me pulling all my remaining strength to crawl over to her. I pull Rita onto my lap blood is everywhere hers as well as mine. Her eyes open and she manages a weak smile. I can see I am too late.
‘Aaron save the baby,’
‘Cut it out, you know how, please do this for me,’
‘I can’t you will die,’ I sob.
‘I am dying you know that, get some blankets,’ Rita instructs as she puts my hand on her belly, I can feel the baby moving still alive. ‘Please he is innocent try to save him she pleads,’ Scrambling to my feet I put the paltry fire out and rush into the house. Going into the kitchen I grab a knife and some throws and cushions from the lounge. I find a first aid kit and bandage my side grabbing a glass of water I chug it down.
When I get back, I can see Rita has gone. Holding back the grief I place my things on the grass. Turning to Rita I rip her smock and with shaking hands I make the incision.
Blood is everywhere but I focus on my task pulling the baby free. He lets out a wail and I smile at his angry form. Wrapping him in a blanket to keep him warm as I tie off the cord.
The thud of the spade as it hits the soft earth, echos in the stillness of the afternoon. The rhythm soothes the rage that thrums through my body. Thoughts crash inside my head as I dig the graves in Sara and Rita’s favourite spot in the meadow. Across from me my baby son sleeps in his basket. Murder is upmost on my mind. I want to kill them all for taking them away from me.
He stirs and I throw the spade down sitting cross legged I reach for him so small and fragile. He is growing weaker, I want him to survive but he isn’t robust like Charlie. He was born to early. I don’t want to think about Charlie the pain too much.
I try to persuade him to suckle desperate for him to live that losing him will break me but that is inevitable. I need a plan the wound in my side isn’t healing and already I am starting to get sick. But he will die without me. I have to find Florence and her soldiers. Winter is coming he won’t survive the elements and I don’t know where Florence is. It’s all hopeless and I just hope he dies before me.