Status: IN-PROGRESS

The Royal Marriage

Chapter Forty-Nine: 24th of December 1541

“Is that all for today?” Iker asked finishing signing the paperwork that needed doing, it had been a long day and it was strange getting back into the swing of things; it was hard to believe that Christmas was already upon them.

It seemed like only yesterday that his mother had passed away and Iker didn’t know how he had managed without her; he still attended church every day to pray for her.

He couldn’t remember the last time that he had done anything other than work and pray, he didn’t want his mother to think that he would forget her after everything that she had done for him.

“No, Your Majesty,” Mister Francisco Alarcón said taking the final paper from the King, he was one of the new Groomsmen that had arrived to serve Iker after one of his former had married.

Iker was sure that young man would do well at court, it wasn’t rare that he took on new Groomsmen, but it was needed with so many leaving.

Nodding his head, Iker dismissed Francisco and leaned back in his chair wondering what to do with himself; he had found it hard to do much when such grief seemed to way down on him.

Charlotte was currently in her laying in and Iker hadn’t found the time to visit her like he had done when she was pregnant with Felipe.

There was no secret that she was due any day now, there was much talk about the birth of his child and Iker knew that most expected his Queen to deliver another son for him.

Once alone, Iker closed his eyes and wondered just what the child would look like; he was sure that they would be perfect, and he knew that Felipe was perfect as he was.

It was strange to think that he had two grown daughters that were married now and an infant son that would one day be the King of Spain; there was another child on the way that he hoped to see grow up.

The sound of someone knocking on his door made Iker groan annoyed that he was being disturbed before the doors swung open and in walked his two most loyal friends and companions.

Fernando and Sergio bowed down to their King, they had come as soon as the news had been given to them; they were sure that Iker would want some company for the long wait that lay ahead of them.

“Her Majesty has gone into labour,” Sergio announced knowing that Iker would need to know what was going on; he prayed for a safe delivery for both mother and child.

The last thing that Iker needed was to lose his wife and unborn child, they didn’t think that their friend would be able to take such a loss after losing his mother.

Iker felt his stomach drop at the news, he didn’t feel ready for this and this certainly hadn’t been what he was expecting; he had hoped for more time before his child was born.

Sergio and Fernando had been with him when all his children had been born and they weren’t going to let him suffer alone; they were sure that this labour would be faster than when Felipe had been born.

It was strange to think that in a few hours there should be a new prince or princess born; they would be welcomed in equal respect, but a son was hoped for.

Regret filled Iker and he suddenly wished that he hadn’t withdrawn so much from his wife; he didn’t even know what names she had considered for their child.

Getting to his feet, Iker knew there was one place that needed to go, and he was hopeful that he would get some solace in the chapel; it would be a few hours before news would come to him about the birth.

He prayed that everything would go well during the birth and that he wouldn’t be forced to bury another woman that he loved.

***

“You are doing so well Your Majesty,” Kenna encouraged wiping the sweat from Charlotte’s forehead, the birth was progressing much quicker than it had when she was delivering Felipe.

It was late afternoon now and the entire court had heard that the Queen had gone into labour; there was no ignoring the silence that seemed to linger just outside of the chamber.

The Queen’s brother had taken residence there and had recently been joined by the King, who had come from chapel to await news of the birth; it wasn’t surprising that he had gone to pray first.

Kenna truly felt for the woman that had become a dear friend to her, she knew that it hadn’t been easy for her when Iker had forsaken her in favour of praying.

The death of Carmen hadn’t made things easy on them and Kenna was sure that in time Iker would recover from his mother’s death; it would take time and she hoped that he wouldn’t push Charlotte further away.

“I can see a lovely head of hair, Your Majesty,” the midwife said smiling, she was sure that the baby would be born some time before the sun left the sky.

It had been a good day, and this was clearly what the court needed after the death of the Queen Mother; it had been hard to see the court remain in mourning for so long.

Crying out in pain, Charlotte continued to push until she heard the cries of a newborn fill the room; she slumped back onto her pillows glad that the hard part was over.

The baby was quickly handed off to Aylee, who wrapped the baby up in a towel and moved to clean them off while the midwife ensured that Charlotte was alright.

The silence that lingered in the room after the birth set Charlotte on edge, her stomach twisting as she feared just what was wrong; things had been more cheerful when Felipe had been born.

Lady Ariadne scurried from the room to inform those waiting on the news of the birth of the successful delivery; a smile on her face as she did so.

“What is it? What’s wrong?” Charlotte demanded, she hated the silence that filled her chambers and she just wanted to know what was going on with her child; she sat herself up looking around the chamber wanting answers.

Kenna took a deep breath, she knew that it wasn’t the worst news, but people would be disappointed; she squeezed Charlotte’s hand knowing that things would hopefully get better.

Charlotte’s blue eyes focused on the bundle that was being wrapped up and once the words were spoken that there would be no going back; she was starting to think something was seriously wrong.

“Nothing. Your Majesty has given birth to a very healthy, baby girl,” Kenna informed her, a reassuring smile formed on her face; she had little doubt that Iker would be pleased with the birth of another healthy child.

He had been a wonderful father to Mary and Elizabeth, there was no doubting that he would be the same for the little girl that Charlotte had just birthed.

A lump formed in Charlotte’s throat at the news, she knew that people would be disappointed at the birth; they had expected her to birth a son and she had failed at that.

Quickly changing out of her sweat soaked clothes and bathing, Charlotte felt refreshed when she climbed back into bed; she was already growing tired already of the disappointment that seemed to consume her chambers.

It was only then that her daughter was settled into her arms, Charlotte stared down at her baby girl and smiled knowing that she loved her regardless.

“Hola,” Charlotte whispered, she didn’t look up as Iker entered the room instead remaining focused on their daughter as her ladies bowed to their King.

Pausing at the end of the bed, Iker watched her knowing that he had let her down by being too wrapped up in his grief; it felt like an eternity since they had last seen one another.

He didn’t say anything for a moment just watching her for a moment, Iker’s brown eyes focused on their newborn daughter and smiled; he wasn’t disappointed in the birth and he had given the orders for celebrations to be held.

The birth of a healthy child was something to be celebrated, it didn’t matter to him if the child wasn’t a son when he already had two daughters that he loved.

Peeking up from their daughter, Charlotte wasn’t sure what to say to him; it had been awhile since they had spoken, and she felt like she should apologise for not giving him a son.

“You have nothing to apologise for… she is most welcome,” Iker assured her, he moved forward knowing that he didn’t want her to apologise for birthing a healthy child.

Taking a seat next to the bed, Iker wasn’t sure what else he could say; he was sure that things would get better, for the first time since his mother had died, he was happy.

The thought of naming the newborn after his mother had crossed his mind, it would be a wonderful way of honouring the woman that she had been.

However, it didn’t feel right to him to do something like that so soon after what had happened; he would find another way to honour her when the time was right.

“Have you thought of a name?” Iker asked softly, he would be happy to let her name their daughter anything that she liked; she deserved it and he hoped that this would make up for how he had treated her.

There was silence for a moment and Charlotte couldn’t help but focus on her daughter for a moment; it made her think of the one person that she missed most at this time.

Her ladies worked around them and Charlotte was glad that they were giving them the illusion of privacy while they talked.

“I had one thought… I would like to name her after my madre,” Charlotte murmured knowing that out of anything that had happened, she had wanted her mother by her side while she went through all of this.

Lady Margaery Castro had passed away twenty years ago, it was hard, and Charlotte was hopeful that her mother would be proud of the path that she had taken.

Iker looked down at his daughter for a moment, he had never meet Charlotte’s mother and he wondered what she had been like; she must have been an amazing woman to end up with a daughter like Charlotte.

He hoped that the little girl that had been born this day would be like her mother; he was sure that they would have their hands full.

There was always time for them to try again for a child, Iker was certain that they would have many more; Charlotte was still young and had produced two healthy children so far.

“Princess Margaery of Spain,” Iker mused in approval, a smile forming at the sound of it and he nodded his head in agreement; it was perfect, and he was sure that she would settle in well with Felipe.

Their son was all alone in his royal household and now he would have a baby sister to play with; there was nothing that Iker wouldn’t do for his children.

Charlotte smiled at the name, she was sure that if they were blessed with another daughter then they would name her after Iker’s mother; it was still too fresh to do so now.

Margaery was perfect, and Charlotte wouldn’t change her for the world, she had plenty of time to give Iker many more sons but right now she was pleased to give him a healthy daughter.

Slowly handing Margaery over to Iker, Charlotte watched him with their daughter; she was hopeful that the birth had snapped him out of the melancholy that seemed to haunt him after his mother’s death.
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So Charlotte has given birth to a baby girl and named her for her mother... what will happen next?

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