The tender movements of their unborn child brought a sense of anticipation and excitement to both Herman and Anastasia.
Herman had already prepared a room for the baby. It was filled with the best and most expensive toys, clothes, and a crib.
Anastasia’s radiance during pregnancy was unmissable. Her skin was glowing. She seemed more gentle and graceful, and her feminine charm was more profound.
After Anastasia had fallen asleep, Herman quietly went out to the living room for a smoke. He was particularly worried about these final two months. The closer they got to the end, the more crucial it was to remain vigilant.
Originally, the plan was to let the baby stay in Anastasia’s womb for seven months, but Anastasia wanted to try for eight months before having a C-section. Every additional day the baby spent in the womb, the better their immunity would be, and the better their overall development would be.
Herman understood Anastasia’s decision. What mother wouldn’t want to give their child
the best possible start?
Throughout her pregnancy, Anastasia had gained about fifteen pounds, and she
frequently suffered from back pain. She thought she could keep this secret from Herman,,
but he knew better.
As the baby grew bigger and the space in her womb became smaller, it added to Anastasia’s burden.
After finishing one cigarette, Herman was about to light a second one when Feiman appeared, looking disheveled in his pajamas.
“What’s keeping you up, Herman?” Feiman asked casually. “You’re about to be a father. There’s no need to look so worried.”
Men always know each other best. Only a man with troubles would seek solace in a cigarette. Feiman was also planning on having a couple of cigarettes to help unwind.
“Thinking about some business matters,” Herman replied. “Mom hasn’t let you back into the bedroom yet?”
“Your mom is as stubborn as a mule,” Feiman grumbled, looking dejected.
Katelyn still wouldn’t let him sleep in their room. They’d been sleeping separately for several months now. Even when he offered himself up for a good scolding, Katelyn refused to engage. She treated him like he was invisible. He had lost his temper and raised his voice earlier, but she continued to ignore him.
Feiman lit a cigarette and sighed. “Your mom’s treating me like I’m on death row, slowly
torturing me with her cold indifference. What does she want, anyway? Anastasia has a daughter, and she’s accepted it. The whole family has. I have an illegitimate son, but suddenly it’s like I’ve committed a cardinal sin.
Regretting his outburst, Feiman glanced at Herman’s reaction and quickly added, “Herman, I didn’t mean to speak ill of Anastasia.”
Herman rose to his feet. His tone was nonchalant. “I’m going back to my room. You
should head to bed too, dad.”
Feiman wanted to have a heart-to-heart chat, and blow off some steam, but before they could even get started, he had managed to upset his eldest son.
Feiman wanted to say something, but in the end, he just waved his hand, signaling
Herman to go get some rest.
The next day, Anastasia, accustomed to sleeping in during her last few months of pregnancy, forgot she was in Salstrom Manor and didn’t wake up until almost ten.
Herman had already left for work. Anastasia hastily got out of bed and headed downstairs.
Grannie Anita was watching TV in the living room. Seeing Anastasia, she smiled and asked, “Morning, Anastasia. Did you sleep well last night?”
Even as she asked, Grannie Anita was internally cursing Anastasia for her blatant disregard of decorum. She wondered how late into the night Anastasia had been with Herman, that she woke up this late.
“Good morning, Grannie,” Anastasia replied politely. “I slept very well.”
Unable to hold her tongue, Grannie Anita pointed out, “It’s almost noon.”
Feeling embarrassed, Anastasia was relieved when Katelyn walked in and said, “Ana, you’re awake. Herman told me to let you sleep in. Your breakfast is still warm in the kitchen. I’ll have Sierra bring it out for you.”
Anastasia was indeed hungry. “Thank you.”
As Anastasia headed to the dining room, Grannie Anita immediately got up and returned to her room. There, she pulled out a packet of some sort of medicine from her drawer.
Grannie Anita had prepared this long ago. Ever since she found evidence of Anastasia’s betrayal of Herman, she had bought this medicine. She intended to terminate Anastasia’s pregnancy. She couldn’t let Anastasia bring this child into the Salstrom family.