Echoes in the Woods
- Genre: Romance
- Status: Completed
- Language: English
- Author: Taylor Brooks
The rumbling thunder outside did nothing to soothe the impending danger she felt at the moment; instead, it drowned her soft cries and whimpers, which had ceased to let her breathe properly. Her clothes were drenched not just in the rain but in the blood that gushed out of her wounds. The dark crimson-red liquid that oozed out of her had made itself comfortable in the contour of her clothes, now resembling an added design. She whimpered when she felt the contractions again.
Her husband was nowhere to be found, and she was unsure if he’d appear anytime soon. She was already tired and could feel her strength fading away.
With a deep breath, she pushed herself to a sitting position, trying to alleviate the burden of her protruding stomach, which proved harder than she thought. She gasped in pure pain when she felt the contractions. Her time was near. She could feel it.
She wasn’t sure if she had the strength to push the baby out and whether she would survive to bring the child into this world. But what choice did she have? Liam had still not shown up, and time was running out. The contractions came again, and this time, she cried out.
“Child, please hold on for your mother. She would not do this if you won’t stay,” she whispered amidst painful gasps.
Her clothes were already torn in various ways, and how they managed to stay on was something she could not quite understand but was grateful for. Gritting her teeth, she tried hard to keep her wits together, resisting the expected breakdown as if she were a normal person in a normal situation.
The worst thing that could happen to anyone in her condition was to be stark naked on a night as cold and violent as this.
As if the cruel universe read her thoughts, lightning shot across the sky. When she tried to sit up in a more comfortable position, her clothes fell off her shoulders. She breathed heavily for what seemed like minutes before clenching her fist and gritting her teeth.
There was no way she would decide to give birth in the open field with the heavy downpour. She crawled painfully into the open shed that had once served as a garage, choosing it as the place to have her baby.
The gaping wound on her thigh and feet became more painful with each step, but even so, she pressed on. It was the only way to save her child. Feeling the contraction again, this time she screamed in pain.
It felt as if the child was tearing down the walls of her stomach, struggling to come out, and she knew there was no way she could delay it any longer. Widening her legs and arching her back, she let out a painful scream as the head of the child popped out from inside her. She could feel her strength fading away, but she could not stop now, especially not when the life inside her was ready to be born.
She screamed again, pushing with all her might, and with the last of her strength, she sighed in painful relief when the child finally emerged.
The room echoed with the painful cry that overshadowed the loud thunders of that night, bringing a smile to her face. It was proof that she had brought life into this world. It would be the best thing that would happen to the universe, but it was a bittersweet moment considering the looming tragedy of her not being alive to witness it.
Stretching her hand to the crying child, she weakly took him in her hands. Her tears of pain fell freely, dropping on the child. The baby, as if comforted by its mother’s tears, stopped crying and snuggled into her arms.
Just then, she heard footsteps, and when she opened her eyes, heavy with exhaustion, she saw the man she had loved—the one with whom she had given life to the child.
He stared at her with pain-filled eyes and let out a loud cry. She wanted to hold him and convey forgiveness for everything, but the child, sensing the sadness, began to cry. She smiled faintly in the darkness.
“Declan,” she whispered softly, hoping he would hear. The child stopped crying once again and played with her hair.
Staring at the man in front of her, who had come closer and was now holding her hands tightly, she knew he loved her, probably more than anyone else. The child in her hands was proof of it. He was proof of their love, a proof of the fact that she had lived, she had loved, she had been loved, she had laughed, she had cried, and now… now she would surrender from the fight.
She could feel the room growing darker and blurrier, and before her husband noticed, she was gone. He cried into the night, sobbing painfully into her chest. He had no intention of staying alive without her, but the loud cry of the child in her arms brought him back to reality. He had to be strong, if not for anything but for the child. She would want that, and he did not want to let her down.
At the same time, he vowed revenge on the ones who had done this to him—the ones who had made his child motherless. He would ensure they paid for ruining his family and depriving his child of his mother’s affection.