Boadicea: Queen of the Iceni

Chapter 1

A storm raged that night. The villagers huddled in fear. The Sky is angry! Hide! Hide! They prayed. They asked the Sky to forgive them. The women and children held each other as they wept. Don't kill us! The men sang soothing songs to calm the Sky. It was their offering to the Sky.
The storm raged on.
But Mulenni did not fear the Sky.
Push, Mulenni! Push!
Mulenni hung on to her life for her babe. My child! I will not fail you!
Her world swirled. All was a haze, a mixture of deafening sound and flashes of light. The storm sent everyone away, except for the midwife. Bless the midwife, Shona! At least she did not desert her like everyone else!
Shona shouted encouragements, but to Mulenni, they were all nothing but a sound. She swam in a sea of pain and dimness. She screamed as a contraction ripped through her. Push! That word lingered in her mind.
Why? Why did this have to be so difficult? Omassil's birth had been less difficult than this! Wasn't the second time supposed to be easier? The pain was unbearable!
Mulenni pushed with what was left of her meagre strength. "Shona!" When will this torment end?
"I have the head, Mulenni, keep on pushing!" Shona's words gave her newfound courage.
For my child!
She gave one last heavy push. The pain was enough to split her body in two. She let out a piercing scream and felt a gush of release from her womb. The sound of an infant's cries filled the air. Mulenni's heart rejoiced. She fell back against the pillows. Let it be a son! she prayed. Her strength slowly ebbed away from her. Mulenni gave in to the shadows that haunted her vision.
Thunder split the air as Shona replied:
"A daughter!"
But Mulenni was gone.