The Birth of The Hero
Proofread: Charles (college friend)
It was night time and the moon was up as it shone its beauty onto the surface of the world. Little creatures of the wild moaned and made small noises as usual as they went about their night time business. Mother Nature was having a wonderful time as the wind blew blissfully, but that was not the case for a certain woman inside a certain house.
The certain woman was pregnant and was in her final stages, which proved to be extremely painful to experience. She was lying on top of a comfortable bed, but it did little to soften her pain. Her stomach was large and it seemed to be causing her intense pain. Due to this, all she could do was thrash around helplessly as if she was going to suffocate.
A man stood next to her with a petrified expression on his face as he watched the woman thrash around recklessly. He was her husband and he held her had firmly to let her know he was there for her to reassure her. While he gave her some confidence, he did not have confidence in himself and he turned to look at the woman wearing a maid uniform. She was sitting on a stool next to the bed and catching his eye, she sighed and smiled reassuringly at him.
“Master, calm down, please. The mistress is not in any kind of danger,” the maid said to him in a reassuring voice.
“B-But she’s in so much pain…” he muttered and the maid gave him a sympathetic look.
“All women would be in pain when they are about to give birth,” replied the maid calmly. Seeing that he was unconvinced, she sighed and said a little firmer voice, “Master, I know this is a first for you, so please relax. I’m here, so every time will be fine.”
He nodded wordlessly and started to breathe deeply to calm his racing heart, which was beating rapidly in anticipation. His wife looked at him in a fluster and made a wry smile as she saw how worried he looked and it seemed like looking at his panicked face had a somewhat calming effect on her. All of a sudden, her eyes widened in a flash as the pain she experienced was intense that she cried out in alarm.
“Madam…” said the maid as she placed a hand on the woman’s forehead to calm her a little.
The husband watched the pained expression of his wife as he continued to hold her hand tightly. His mouth felt dry due to hoe helpless he felt, but he managed to open his mouth and say firmly, “Give it… your best…!”
A few tense moments later, the baby was finally born and the mother heaved a very deep sigh in relief. The baby born was a boy and he had small black hair just like his mother while the colour of his eyes were the same. The maid seemed to look curiously at the boy before passing him over to his mother, who held her son in her arms warmly while sighing contentedly.
As she tenderly rubbed his tufty hair, the father leaned over and smiled sweetly at his little boy.
“He’s so cute…!” he said happily with a grin forming on his face. “I can see he’s got your hair, so that’s a bummer, but I’m sure he’ll grow up to as strong and handsome as me!”
“Stop gloating so much, you’ll bring bad to him,” his wife said a little sternly before moving her arms towards him. “Here. Hold him now. It’s your turn.”
“M-Mine…?” he asked in surprise and he looked at the sleeping boy in silence before meekly saying, “Okay.”
So, the wife gently passed her baby over to her husband, who took hold of him gently in his arms with am amazed look on his face.
“W-Wow…” he said as he nervously held his son gently in his arms while looking at him in awe. “My son…”
The baby felt very small in his arms and extremely soft that he worried that he could be injured very easily. It made him wonder how such cute creatures could be born from women. He did not have time to dwell on the thought, though because the baby started to cry as soon as he left his mother’s arms.
“W-W-What…?” the father asked in surprise as he had no idea what was wrong. “S-Stop crying…! Please…!”
He slowly swung his baby up and down, but it was no good as the baby continued to cry louder. He quickly moved over to his wife and helplessly handed him over to her with a debunked look on his face. As soon as the boy rested in his mother’s arms, he became silent and seemed to be in bliss once more.
“You see…? He loves his mother more,” said his wife to her husband with a wink.
“Oh… Ha-ha…” he said irritably with a disgruntled expression on his face.
The wife chuckled and she turned back to stroke her baby’s hair softly while the maid watched from the side.
Since then, several days had gone by and the condition of both the mother and child had stabilised. She was now able to leave the bed and began moving normally, although there was still some pain in her stomach. So, she left all of cooking and cleaning to their house maid while she rested for most of the day after an hour of walking.
On one day, both she and her husband were seated in their bedroom with the boy sleeping peacefully in her arms. They were on the topic of making plans for the future of their child while also thinking of the name they should give him.
“For starters, I think he should train with the sword once he reaches seven,” the husband said in a firm voice.
“Why seven? Isn’t that too young for the sword?” she asked him with a curious look on her face.
“Come now. All boys start their training at the age of seven, which is when they are most active and it’s also the perfect condition to kick start their muscles to develop nicely,” said the husband with a bright smile on his face.
“Okay…” she said and looked a little curiously at her husband’s face. “If that’s the case, can you listen to what I have to say?”
“Go ahead,” he said cheerily.
She hesitated for a moment longer before she said, “I’m okay with him training with the sword, but I also think he should start learning magic skills at around that age.”
Her words caused his smile to falter and he looked at her with a slightly serious expression on his face.
“No, Lakshmi. I don’t want our son to learn magic,” he said firmly in a voice that made it as the final decision.
His wife, Lakshmi sighed and said, “Indra, please… Take a look at me. I’m a magician and I’m confident he can be too.”
Her husband, Indira shook his head and said, “No. If you want me to watch my son stuff himself in books for hours on ends trying to learn one single spell, then I won’t have it.”
“No, Indira. You’re wrong, she said quickly in an attempt to convince him. “You have a biased impression on magicians being weak, but take a look at your best friend, Felix. He’s a master as a magician swordsman.”
“That’s only because he’s part of the Phoenix Clan!” Indira said curtly with an irritable expression forming on his face. “Stop bringing up people that are not human! I mean, it’s truly well and good for non-humans to master magic because they have great aptitude for it, but I don’t see how it’ll apply to regular humans such as us.”
Lakshmi looked at him intently for a moment in silence before she said, “Are you saying that because I’m just an Advanced Ranked Magician?”
There was a sadness in her voice and he quickly looked at her in surprise before he said, “No! Not at all! I’m not making fun of your rank, Lakshmi. I know how hard you tried to reach higher ranks, but… it’s just that magic takes so much time to prepare and use. Instead of doing all that complicated stuff, it’s so much easier to move fast and swung your sword.”
“I know… I understand what you mean, but…” Indira said and he hesitated momentarily before he said, “I failed at magic and my master taught me to fight bravely with the sword. Look at me now! I’m a Saint Ranked Swordsman who can beat Saint Ranked Monsters fairly easily!”
“Yes, but you can’t beat giants,” said Lakshmi scornfully.
“Like I said, I’m only a Saint Ranked Swordsman and taking such creatures requires one to be a King Ranked Swordsman or King Ranked Magician!”
Lakshmi stared at him with lowered eyebrows and said, “I think you’re just escaping reality.”
Indra heaved a deep sigh and said, “L-Look… Why don’t we postpone the idea of him training in magic until he reaches that age? Okay?”
“Why? Why can’t we decide on it here and now?” she asked him, but he shook his head wearily.
“No, Lakshmi. I want him to train with the sword first before letting him do other things,” he said in a firm resolute voice. “Do you understand?”
“B-But—!” she began to protect, but he cut her off by saying, “Now, now, Lakshmi!”
She inwardly sighed at the stubbornness of her husband and let go of the topic until sometime in the future, where she decided to ask him again. So, she turned her attention towards naming her boy and a smile formed on her face and surprised her husband.
“What’re you grinning about?” he asked her with a puzzled look on his face.
“I’m wondering of the kind of name I should give my son,” she said with a thoughtful look on her face.
“Simple: Dharma!” Indra said simply in a firm voice.
Lakshmi turned to look at him slowly with a strange look on he face before she said, “I think that’s too aggressive.”
“Isn’t that how a boy should turn out to be when he grows up?”
His wife looked at him severily and said, “If you mean for him to go through the same hardship like us two, then I refuse to give him that name!”
Indira looked surprised and he raised his hands up in defeat as he said, “Alright. Alright.”
He placed hand on his chin as he thought for a moment as silence fell within the room.
“How about Ragava?” Lakshmi suggested hopefully.
Her husband nodded for a moment at that name and slowly said, “Yes, but… I think there should be some glory to his name… You know, something he could be proud of in the future.”
Lakshmi looked at him curiously and asked, “Are you expecting him to make a fame for himself?”
“Of course!” he said excitedly. “Think about how proud it would make me to see my son become world famous!”
“Mmm… Yes, but it makes a mother worry what sort of troubles he will get into in the process of becoming famous,” said Lakshmi in a worried voice.
Indira laughed and said, “Sure, but I think he’ll better think for himself and decide if he should risk it all!”
“Okay…” she said slowly while looking a little unconvinced.
He looked at the expression on her face and he smiled softly as he said, “How about a name that gives him a lot of luck? You know… The luck that you and I never had as we grew up with no parents or relatives to look after us…”
She looked at him in surprise and slowly said, “You’re right… He deserves all the luck the world can offer.”
“Yeah and that’s why… let’s name him… Lakshman,” he offered with a wide smile on his face. “
“Lakshman?” she asked curiously.
“Yeah! It literally means Lucky!”
She looked at him with a bemused expression on her face before she said, “That’s so… childish…”
He was surprised and he exclaimed, “Huh?! What’s childish about it?!” he demanded with a disbelieving look on his face.
Seeing his expression made her laugh and she lightly touched his check as she said, “but I like it.” As he looked surprised by her response, she slowly looked down at her sleeping baby and said softly, “Lakshman… It has a good ring to it.”
The baby boy briefly stirred from his sleep before rolling over to continue sleeping more, which caused her to smile.
Missing the warm scene, Indira boasted by saying, “Yeah! I’m smart for thinking up that name.”
“Well done to you,” said Lakshmi and she smiled to see how happy her husband was.
Thus, their decided to name their son Lakshman. Little did they know of the chain of events that would follow the rise of that name and the destiny that the boy would eventually face. Right then, however, the boy and his parents knew nothing of this as the parents continued to talk about something while he slept blissfully on his mother’s lap.