The Culture of Delivery

via Daily Prompt: Delivery

The last day or two of writing has been focused on the delivery of a baby. Naturally, not just any baby, but the first baby after almost the entire species has been wiped out by a super-plague. However, that’s not the most unusual thing about it. Of all the Lupa stories and plans I’ve written, and all the children people have had, only 2 birth scenes have been written, one of them just yesterday.

While writing it, it occurred to me that I’d never actually revisited how Lupa do delivery. I had done a few things in the first one that stick and were a basic model. And I knew who delivers babies, and what happens with bonds. But not the mechanics of it. Now, it’s more important than ever that they know and keep their culture, and must show their new doctors how they do things. And I’m sitting there contemplating: What are the actions? What specific action do Lupa take? What certain herbs do they use?

Of course they use herbs, I think. Why wouldn’t they?

I’ve known, since Miara’s birth, that they prefer to give birth outside where possible. Now, I need to figure out how that works. They’ll need a water source, blankets, and possibly herbs to keep bugs away. What medical equipment might they take out with them? They’ll certainly need to stay close to the house, won’t they? How do they approach the afterbirth, and what do they do with the placenta?

While I’d been aware of the birthing park they have in this situation, it now has a location (next to the medical units), and was built with underground piping for fresh water at regular intervals. Directly outside the door, against the building, is a storage unit stocked with blankets, towels, and the sterilized medical accoutrements one needs. Much of it is packed into kits in large basins, later used for water, medical washes, etc. Along with these are pack of herbs, some of which are used medically if needed, and another set for washwater.

So, the mechanics are done, and I can move on…once I get the info recorded.

Writing Exercise: Toothbrush

via Daily Prompt: Toothbrush

Kore entered the suite not long after her interview with Renee, who had answered her advertisement for a seamstress and housekeeper. It had gone well enough, and things were moving forward more quickly than she had anticipated.

“Miss Galene, Miss Eirene, please attend here a moment,” she called gently into the back rooms, where they were surely resting at this time of day. It was not long, however, until they appears, Eirene especially looking sleepy as she slumped on the couch.

“This had better be important,” she muttered under her breath.

“I assure you I would not have called you if it was not,” Kora said. “Someone has applied for the position we offered, and I have interviewed her. She will be coming shortly for a trial of a week or two. If we all get along well, then she will have the position.”

“What if I don’t like her?” Eirene asked.

“We will just have to see how it goes,” Galene said. “I am interested to meet this person.”

“Her name is Renee, and she seems a bit older than we are. She has worked as a servant before, and says she is a capable seamstress.”

“I do hope so,” Galene said. “I do not wish to go out every time I need a new gown or shift.”

“Yes, it is inconvenient. Now, let us make the smaller bedroom ready for her, as she should not sleep with us in the large room.”

“You mean I get to sleep with you rich girls?”

“If you would prefer to look at it that way,” Kore said, before rising to go do so.

 

Renee, her long blonde curls tied up and ready go get to work, should it be needed, knocked on the door of suite 1102. Based on what she’d gathered from Kore, these girls were quite well off, and perhaps had never bothered with their own cleaning–the place might need a thorough cleaning as soon as possible. The girl who opened the door and looked her over, however, didn’t seem upper class at all.

“Um, hallo. I’m Renee, I believe I am expected?”

“The servant, yeah.”

“Eirene, please be kind, and let her in.” This was a young woman with long hair and shy demeanor, and would be the other Lady whom Kore had mentioned. She pulled Eirene back from the door so that Renee could enter. “I am Galene, Miss Renee. How do you do?”

“Well, thank you. It’s a pleasure to meet you.”

Galene dropped a very proper curtsy, and turned to lead through the entryway–was that a shrine?–into the main room of the suite, where Kore was waiting to welcome her. However, the place looked quite clean and tidy, and she saw maybe that boded well.

“Welcome to our household,” Kore said. “Please come this way, and I will show you your room, and where you can put your things.”

“Thank you. Please do.”

After all the books in the main room, and lining the hallway, Renee wasn’t entirely surprised to see the small bedroom she was shown was also entirely lined with books. An open rack and a press for clothes stood in on corner, and a clothes basket in another. She was left to unpack, and her few things for the trial period didn’t take long to unpack. Finally, she had only her toiletry kit left.

“Miss Kore, where is the bathroom which I should use?” she asked, having found Kore taking a book of a shelf in the hallway. “You all certainly do have a lot of books.”

“Yes, we do. Both Miss Galene and I love books and stories. Having access to such printed material is a delight to both of us.”

“Oh, I see. Did you not have access to such materials growing up?”

“No. You see, we come from much further back, before the invention of the printing press.”

“What?”

“We can tell you about it over the next few days, if you decide to stay. The bathing area is here, on the left,” Kore continued, opening the door to a large and luxurious bathroom.

“Your home is certainly lovely,” Renee commented. “Is this area here mine?” she asked, going to part of a sink vanity which had been cleared off.

“Yes. What is this handled device you have?” She asked now, gesturing to the toothbrush Renee had just set out.

“This? You haven’t seen a toothbrush before? It’s an electric one, but similar to a manual.”

“There are different kinds?”

“Well, yes. What do you girls use to clean your teeth?” Renee wondered. Maybe the part about their age was true? But then, wouldn’t they have seen the invention of the toothbrush?

“We use laurel twigs for daily cleaning, and mastic gum once or twice a week. I did not realize modern people used anything else,” Kore said, seemingly quite as surprised as Renee. She crossed to open a glass jar of what looked like a crystallized substance. “It also has several other health benefits.”

“How interesting. I will have to read up on it,” Renee said.

“And I on toothbrushes!” She seemed in a good mood  having something to research, and Renee couldn’t help but smile a bit as she left her to set out the remainder of her things.

 

 

 

This turned out way longer than anticipated due to setup needs, but hopefully it’s a fun read.