205 Chapter 202 Selena’s Return
"Joseph, I don't begin to understand everything that man just said, but I assure you I will be fine."
His mother was sitting at a table, heavily laden with food. There were ceilings erected over her garden to ensure any future attacks couldn't hurt her, and they were magicked to allow sunlight and rain to still pass through, so the plants didn't suffer. She had a personal servant, a young girl dressed in a very pretty outfit, to see to her every desire, and who was also incredibly good at magical healing spells. If she so much as stubbed a toe, Joseph wanted to make sure she would be taken care of.
"I will try and check on you every day, to make sure we can talk about whatever you want, so you don't have to come find me, and if I can't make it, then I'll send a message to let you know," said Joseph, glancing around to make sure he hadn't forgotten anything.
He was sure that everyone thought he was going a little overboard, but he knew there was still a god out there that was more than willing to try and take her out again, if only to hurt him.
"You don't have to do that. Once a week will be fine. I spoke with your father about not showing up in front of your council and questioning everything you did. You're a kind now. I just have a hard time remembering that."
She picked up a strawberry and ate it with relish, before pulling the bowl of mixed fruits a little closer.
Nodding to himself, Joseph watched her eat for a moment, hardly able to believe that she was back. Noting Stella watching him, he realized he was wasting time. A few minutes later they were in a large room under the castle, with the mech he had acquired from the gnomes standing before him. It was plenty large enough for two to ride inside of it, so Stella could easily come with him.
"Joseph?" called Daisy. "You may need to head to the generator…there are people claiming a fire has broken out there, but it's a confusing report…"
"Thank you, Daisy," he said, turning to Stella. "Selena's back."
They teleported to the generator, where a fire was indeed burning. All of the grass had already turned to ash, and Selena was wrapped in the robes he had left for her. She turned to him with a wide grin, and rushed over to hug him.
"Oh, Joseph! It was so much fun getting to be with my love like that!"
He choked, his face turning bright red, and not just from her words, but from the heat as well. Selena still had a body of fire. Her hair waved around her face, dancing in the slight breeze kicked up from the still burning embers around them.
"Selena, I'm glad you decided to return, but you may want to tone the heat down a bit," he said, trying to pat her back, with varying levels of success.
"Oh! I forgot!" her body reformed into that of a normal woman's figure, except for her hair. It still danced around her face, as if it had a mind of its own. She laughed, twirling in the black circle, and wrapped her arms around herself. It was then, that everyone watching, noticed the belly bump.
"Selena?" asked Joseph, motioning to her hair, "Not many places in the kingdom are fireproof, but if I need to make them that way…"
"Oh, silly me! I'm sorry, I'm still just so ecstatic after my vacation. That is what you call it? Right?" Her hair died down, to waves of black with bits of still glowing embers mixed throughout, and Joseph decided that was probably the best he was going to get from her.
She grabbed Stella's hand and turned to Joseph. "Is it alright if I take her off for a bath, so I can talk with her?" she asked.
Stella was looking a little overwhelmed, and Joseph knew that she would get bored quickly, watching him work on the mech, so he nodded.
"I will be working on the mech, so when you are done, you know where to find me," he said to Stella. He was sure she would be able to answer all of the questions he had swirling in his mind when she returned, and he was itching to get to work.
With a forced grin, Stella nodded to Selena, and Joseph was gone. She wasn't sure she was ready for whatever Selena wanted to share, but it didn't seem to matter as she was dragged along by Selena all the way to the bathhouse.
"Selena, we will never get a bath if you don't tone down the heat. This is the third time you've boiled off all of the water!" complained Stella, reaching for the handle to fill the tub again. Her fire-protecting tattoo was working in overdrive. Joseph had assured her it would keep her safe from anything Selena could pull off, but she was starting to wonder if it would need to be redone before the day was over.
"I'm sorry! I really am trying! It seems the baby keeps ramping my body heat up after I lower it. I don't think he or she really likes the cold much!"
"I'm amazed you were able to get pregnant," said Stella, sliding down into the water as it climbed higher.
The belly bump was much more prominent, and Stella couldn't seem to take her eyes off of it. She tried to imagine herself with a bump, and the image of her mother screaming in pain as she aborted a baby jerked her away from it. She hadn't even told that memory to Joseph.
Thinking about her mom, made her wonder how she was doing in the school they had set up for the children. She had been assigned to help watch over the kids when they were allowed free time to play, and the last Stella had heard, she loved it. Stella was just glad she didn't have any memories of the time before coming here. Most of her memories were horrible from that time, so she couldn't imagine how bad her mothers were.
"I'm so excited to be a mother! I can't wait until he or she is born! To hold him or her in my hands will be a dream come true!" crooned Selena, wrapping her hands around her belly and rocking back and forth.
"Do you know how long it will be before you give birth?" asked Stella, confused about how that worked.
"I'm not sure, but my love FIRE said the baby will grow fast, as a flame in a dry forest. I'm not worried about it, because if I have any troubles that Joseph can't handle, I'll just go back to the realm of fire and birth the babe there. Though we would both like for the babe to be born here, if possible."
"Why's that?" asked Stella, turning off the water as the tub was finally filled.
"If I give birth here, the baby will have a body that is material, whereas if I give birth in the realm of fire, the baby will have to stay there. FIRE would like for his child to mostly live here, where Joseph can teach everything my little baby will need to be great."
Stella's jaw dropped at the thought of a half elemental child learning from Joseph, and couldn't help but shiver despite the boiling water around her.