Praying under the stars @gaytailgate
1

"Please, moon and stars in the night sky, please help me…" 

He whispered into his closed hands.

Standing outside in the balcony of his bedroom, the cold air of the night making him tremble, Dion pleaded to the moon and the stars over him, eyes closed and hands shaking.

He had been doing the same ritual every night, ever since that day… when he noticed the swelling of his belly.

Days ago, he woke up feeling ill, nausea invaded him in the morning for some unknown reason, that day he blamed the previous night's dinner, maybe it had made him sick for some reason, he didn't tell anyone, not even his maids or the doctor, nobody knew, "it will pass" he told himself, "must have been the food", he kept saying like he was trying to convince someone else.

Nausea didn't stop, it kept happening, every morning.

He was able to hide the sicknesses from everyone, even Elun.

Waking up early and taking care of everything before Elun even opened his eyes.

But it worried him.

Inside him, he knew, but he didn't want to accept it.

One night, standing before the large mirror in his bedroom, before bed, wearing his nightgown, he touched his belly… and his fear became true.

He didn't even notice the tears falling down his cheeks while he was undressing.

Now naked in front of the mirror he could see it more clearly.

His belly was slightly swollen and hard to the touch, Dion's heart shattered.

He had been begging for this not to happen, had been praying to the moon and stars, had been asking to become unable to carry children… since the day of his wedding to Elun.

But there was nothing to do now, he couldn't stop it.

But he could hide it…

So he did, started using more layers of clothing, had been acting normal, dismissed his maids from their tasks of dressing him and bathing him.

The praying hadn't stopped, every night before bed he would walk outside on the balcony and pray to the moon and the stars and the night sky to be saved, he prayed for Elun to go back to his old self, he prayed for the safety of his baby…

He knew it was useless, that one day it would be too obvious, that soon he wouldn't be able to hide it.

His thoughts of running away were on his mind even more now but he knew he wouldn't make it far like this.

He kept lying to himself, kept saying that he would be saved, kept praying that one day Nova would appear in the garden and save him, take him away on his horse to somewhere safe.

"Dion?" Elun's voice came from outside the door, followed by hard knocking.

Dion's heart dropped to the floor.

He usually had more time, more time to pray and hide under the covers and go to sleep before Elun came and went to bed but for some reason, he was early.

"Dion? open this door, now!" Elun yelled.

Dion closed the door to the balcony and tried to use his robe to hide his body before opening the door to let Elun in, hands trembling.

Elun walked in slowly, glaring at Dion.

"What's wrong with you?" He asked, Dion, kept quiet and closed the door behind him.

Elun glared at him.

He walked to the mirror, took off his garments, and put them on the dresser, he looked at Dion in the mirror before turning around and approaching him.

"Tell me, what's going on?" He asked.

"Nothing, I was just praying, I must go to bed now, goodnight-" Dion tried to walk past him to get into bed but he was stopped from even getting close to it.

"You have been acting strange lately, you think I haven't noticed?" Elun dragged him to the bed and made him sit on the edge before speaking again.

"Hm? What is it?"  Elun crouched in front of Dion, he tried making eye contact but Dion averted his gaze.

"You are not gonna tell me? If something is upsetting you, you should tell your husband, your king" Elun took Dion's hands on his own and squeezed.

Elun's gaze was soft, a small smile on his face, it gave the feeling of safety but Dion knew better than to fall for it, Elun had gotten incredibly good at faking his love.

"I promise, I am fine, nothing is bothering me, may I go to bed now?" Dion asked, trying to free his hands from Elun's grasp.

Elun kept smiling at him, the grip on his hands became tighter.

"Is that so? Then you won't mind…" Elun let go of his hands and stood up before him, his right hand pushed Dion down on the bed while he placed his other hand on his thigh.

Fear invaded Dion.

"W-what are you doing?" He stuttered.

"I am looking for injuries, you must have gotten hurt while riding one of the horses outside and are trying to hide it, or maybe you got hurt in the garden, uh?" Elun kept him pressed down on the bed but his hands didn't move.

"Please… I need to sleep"

"Are you that tired? Do you not like it when your king touches you? I am just looking for whatever is making you upset, any cuts, any bruises..." Elun pulled on Dion's robe a little.

"Take this off my darling, let me see you"

"It's cold and I am fine, maybe we should just-" 

"Cold? And yet you were standing outside in the balcony just now"

"H-How did you-"

"You think I am dumb? I know you better than anyone… I know when you lie to me, my love, I know you've been hiding something and I am pretty sure it has something to do with the fact that you have been wearing layers over layers of clothing, out of nowhere, you have changed your eating habits, you get up from our bed early in the mornings when the sun is not even out yet to do who knows what and then you get under the covers again, next to me  like nothing has happened… show me, show me what you have done to yourself"

"Please Elun… I promise i-" Dion tried to speak but Elun interrupted him.

"I said. Show me" Elun grabbed him by the arms and pulled him up abruptly, making him stand up, Dion couldn't do anything but struggle as Elun started removing his robe and then his nightgown.

"Please! Elun!" Dion tried to stop him but Elun wouldn't stop now.

Elun slid off the robe down his shoulders, his nightgown was being lifted, exposing his body from the chest down, letting Elun see everything.

Elun's eyes traveled from Dion's feet up to his legs, his gaze landed on Dion's swollen midriff.

"What…" Elun placed one of his hands on Dion's belly, feeling the warmth of Dion's skin.

"Oh dear… so this is what you been hiding…" 

"Elun…"

"Why hadn't you said anything? This is great news!" Elun said, excitement in his voice.

Dion looked away from him.

"You are gonna give me an heir… you should be proud, I have been waiting for this for so long" Elun smiled.

Finally, Elun removed his hand from Dion's stomach and went back to Dion's nightgown, putting in on his body in the right way, covering him.

Elun's hands cupped Dion's face.

"My love, tell me, why did you hide this? This is a blessing, from the moon and the stars, I don't understand why you would hide such a thing from me… of maybe I do…" 

Elun's thumbs caressed Dion's cheeks gently, wiping the tears that were now falling down his cheeks.

"Tell me… why are you upset about it? Is it because of morning sickness? Or maybe… are you upset because it's not **his** child?"

Elun's voice sent a shiver down Dion's spine, his eyes opened wide and his whole body started shaking.

"Hmmm? Is that it?… are you sad is not his? Tell me…" 

Dion kept looking away, from the corner of his eye he could see Elun smiling at him, eyes empty of any real love or affection. Numb.

"Go to bed, now, you need to rest" Elun removed his hands. Got away from Dion and walked to the door.

"I will make sure everything you need for the upcoming months is ready" he opened the door but instead of walking out of the room he turned to look at Dion, still standing there.

"I expect you not to keep more secrets from me from now on… you should be joyful, who knows, maybe the moon will bless us with twins… wouldn't you like that?" He asked.

It didn't feel like a question though, it felt more like a threatening remark.

Dion kept his gaze away, paralyzed in fear on the spot.

"Rest well… my bird of paradise" Elun smiled one last time before turning around and walking out of the room, closing the door behind him, letting Dion stand there.

Only until Dion stopped hearing Elun's steps outside of the room did he allow himself to relax, dropping his shoulders in defeat and letting the tears run down his cheeks.

His trembling hands instinctively landed on his belly for comfort, his skin warm thru the fabric of his nightgown,  he calmed himself down by stroking his belly softly, and then he turned to his bed, climbed on it, and got under the soft covers, there on the comfortable bed he allowed himself to sob loudly.

He told himself he needed to protect his baby, needed to save it.

He needed sleep, tomorrow he would pray under the stars again and he would ask the moon to bring his knight back to him.

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