It was evening in Azshara by the time Jez got to the tiny cave that Gromth was living in. She looked around between fiercely rubbing at her tear-blurred eyes, her face flushed purple. Her usually well kept hair was disheveled and looked unwashed and not in her typical braids. Her robe, which she had laboured so hard for, was wrinkled. Jez was a mess, and she was alone in the cold cave. She crumpled to the floor, bawling loudly as birds squawked their disapproval of her noise.
Zij stomped angrily to the Keep, Draeka following behind him, both of them silent on their journey. They both took a seat on the floor, intertwining their hands in one another’s, Zij nearly too upset to even speak. Draeka managed to gather that he and Jez had fought, and nodded, offering no advice or words of encouragement. Instead, she hugged him to her, her head resting on his heaving chest. They stayed there the night, not speaking, both of them too engulfed in the same question… what now?
Gromth found Jez a few hours after she had arrived, her eyes flittering in her sleep, face still puffy from tears, her limbs thrashing slightly while she made tiny whimpering noises. He bent down to her, observing her for a moment before he went to get his blanket, draping it on her tiny body. Her eyes opened at the touch of the fabric, and the word “Zij” was passed her lips before she could realize where she was.
Quickly looking around the room, her eyes stopped on Gromth. His eyes were sad, as always, but he looked confused and concerned, as well as hurt that she had called for Zij.
Her eyes filled with new tears as she watched him and blurted out “I’m pregnant” before her body was wracked with heaving sobs again. It took Gromth a moment to comprehend the scene: his lover crying in his cave, needing to tell him she was pregnant. She curled into a ball on the cold floor, her eyes shut tight, trying to fight the tears as her hoarse throat made tiny noises like a sob mixed with a whimper. He slowly moved to her, lifting her limp torso into his lap and stroked her hair, murmuring that it would be alright.
Zij and Draeka had fallen asleep in each others arms. Their first full night together had been exhausting and uncomfortable, though for reasons neither of them had expected. Zij was still angry as he woke from another dream, Draeka sprawled over the floor, her arm and leg thrown over his. He grunted and she woke with a start, reaching for her axe before her eyes even opened. Seeing no threat in the room, she groaned and rolled over to cuddle into Zij, who instead stood and began pacing, his mind alert as he began ranting.
Draeka lay dumbfounded as she listened to the story of how he had sensed the child his wife was carrying and how he knew it wasn’t his since he and Jez couldn’t have children (leaving out some pertinent information on why.)
He explained, though not necessarily to Draeka, about how he confronted her and how she said she couldn’t abort the child, even if it wasn’t his. Zij threw his arms up in anger at this point, looking furious. After several more minutes of storming around, he sighed, defeated with rage and sorry. His sister, his wife, his lover, had left him for another man. He looked down at Draeka, still in her plate armour, axe within arms reach, and motioned that it was time to go. They had a meeting that evening, and she knew he needed to spill blood before then.
She had fitful sleeps all night, Gromth staying awake and looking over her, his eyes often trailing down to her firm stomach with wonder, though many other emotions flooded him that were completely indescribable. But that night, he decided he would look after his young Troll lover and their child; do whatever needed done.
Jez woke with dry eyes and a hoarse throat, her tears apparently unable to fall any more, though she scratched roughly at her eyes and chest. The mark on her chest burned with the absence o f Zij, a deep pain going through her body. Gromth gingerly grabbed her wrists and pulled her into a tight embrace, his legs shaky from the lack of sleep.
“It’s okay, you’ll stay by me,” he spoke softly, his voice low and dry. She pulled away, her eyes wet again as she pulled him to hug her tighter.
She gave him a note to mail to Zij as she tried to distract herself from the heavy lump in the put of her stomach, still absentmindedly scratching at her chest and eyes.