Daughter of Draekons

By: Lili Zander & Lee Savino

A Prison Planet Slice of Life




I'm pregnant.





I cycle between three states. Hungry. Horny. Weepy.





I eat French fries dipped in vanilla pudding.





I look like a beached whale.





I'm also scared. No one knows what my child will look like, or what species she’ll be. She could be human or Draekon, or…





Something else entirely. Something new.





Daughter of Draekons.





Daughter of Draekons is a short story set in the Dragons in Exile series. It does not not stand alone, and should be read after Draekon Destiny. Catch up with everyone on the prison planet while you’re waiting for Draekon Fever.





The Lowlands and surrounding areas





1





Harper





"Oooh, baby," I moan. "Oooh, yeah. Right there."

Vulrux grins at me as his hands massage up my legs. His thumbs stroke a particularly sore spot on my calf, and I melt into the bed. I'm propped on about a thousand pillows—thank you, Zunix’s syn—with all the essentials within reaching distance. A large cup of water, a flat leaf I use as a fan, and materials for a soft baby blanket that May is teaching me to crochet with thin strips of ahuma fabric before my due date.

Not that we know when that is—the due date, the length of this pregnancy, or how big or small my daughter will be when she arrives. Dariux’s med-kit was able to tell us the gender of the baby, but nothing else.

There’s no rulebook here. Draekon pregnancies are only four months long, but human ones are forty weeks. It could be any day now. In a few weeks, or a month, or who even knows? I got pregnant sometime during the rainy season. As best as we’ve been able to calculate, I’m hovering around the four-month mark, but so far, though I’m bloated, fiendishly uncomfortable, and needing to pee at the drop of a hat, there’s no sign that my baby girl is ready to leave my womb.

Sometimes, that thought makes me weepy. Ah, who am I kidding? I cry a lot nowadays. Yesterday, May had come over to help me troubleshoot my baby blanket—I am not crafty—and I sobbed buckets on her shoulder. “I can’t even make a stupid blanket,” I’d bawled. “How am I going to care for a child?”

She’d inched away from me, a terrified expression on her face. Poor May. I have to waddle over to her apartment today and apologize.

What if my baby goes the full nine-month term?

Dear stars above, I hope it’s not the case, because I’m already huge. I don’t even want to know how much weight I’ve gained. While my skin is glowing, the rest of me resembles a beached whale.

Correction: A beached whale with fantastic boobs. That’s one thing pregnancy has done for me. My breasts are large and lush. I lie around half naked because the temperature setting in our underground-apartment is a temperamental beast that only seems to work half the time, and when it’s on the fritz, it’s hot and humid here. I probably look like a wanton goddess, but most of the time, all I want is for someone to rub my aching calves.

My poor, poor mates.

“Have you gotten any more leg cramps?” Vulrux asks.

“No.” Thank all the pregnancy gods—human and Draekon. The last Charlie Horse I got hurt so bad it woke me up in the middle of the night. I moaned so loudly my mates thought I was going into labor.

“Good.” Vulrux keeps kneading my calf. His hair is mussed, and his face is serious and a little tired. That’s my fault. Lately, I’ve been up a lot at night. Between heartburn and having to go to the bathroom after the smallest sip of water, not to mention the tossing and turning trying to get comfortable, I’m awake every few hours. My mates wake up right along with me, though they never complain. Quite the opposite. They’re always patient, loving, and eager to help.

I totally hit the Draekon jackpot.

Speaking of jackpot… The door opens, and Dennox comes in. The smell of the food he’s carrying hits me, and my stomach growls. I just ate an hour ago, but tell that to my body. It thinks I’m starving.

"Did you get them?" I ask eagerly, sitting up in my pillow-nest.

My mate nods and offers me the platter of hot French fries.

"Ohmygherd," I sigh as I bite into a fry. "So good."

Dennox and Vulrux exchange amused glances. I ignore them in favor of the fries. Food hits my stomach, and it settles.

For the next few minutes, I munch happily, licking the grease from my fingers. I’ll pay for this later with heartburn, but Vulrux is working on some sort of stomach tonic he mixes with fruit juice. Fingers crossed, it does the trick.

Speaking of fruit… “Can you hand me that?” I reach out a hand, and Dennox hands me a cup of creamy vanilla pudding. Okay, it’s not really vanilla pudding, though it certainly tastes like it. It’s mashed kunnr fruit, and it’s absolutely delicious. “I’m going to try something.” I dip a fry into the sweet stuff, take a bite, and moan as the salt-fat-sugar combination hits my tongue. “That is amazing.”

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