Everything stayed in lockdown until the next morning, and even then, only a few of the scientists were allowed to work. They weren't even allowed to go outside of SS for their research.

I rested my hand on my abdomen in a protective gesture. If Peter thought something was wrong, he was probably right; more often than not, he was. Our time at SS had been a confinement of sorts, but a beneficial experience for the two of us. How dangerous could it be to stay? What was the danger?

Peter only worked half of his normal shift. I was glad to have him with me, but unnerved by the possible danger. In our time together, Peter planned out a course of action. He sent the petition to the government earlier that morning, requesting permission to be relieved of his duties at SS. Due to the efficiency of the government, and the ability to instantly send an electronic letter from the station at SS to any government branch, we would have the answer to our petition before the week was out. I wasn't sure if Peter could wait that long, though, and feared that he might resort to using one of the emergency vehicles and leaving before then.

Two days after the lockdown, Peter was allowed to return to his normal schedule. We never did learn why we had to stay in our quarters. I still hadn't managed to shake the cold I'd come down with, even after visiting the infirmary and getting some vitamin supplements to boost my immune system.

There were two physicians at SS. Both had originally studied in specific fields of medicine, but received training in general medicine. Any severe cases were sent to the nearby city, Senton, which had a more advanced medical team. The primary physician, a young woman named Susan Langely, was ready to help me in any way she could. Knowing I was pregnant, she only gave me vitamin supplements. The medical supplies at SS were basic, and probably none of them were safe for me to take.

"Kiri, you and Peter may want to consider leaving if anything were to happen. You know SS wasn't designed with children in mind." She cautioned me before I left. Were Peter and I the only ones unaware of whatever danger that seemed to be approaching? I nodded in response to her comment, and took the vitamins back to my quarters.

I decided to visit the botanical garden. Some of the other people living at SS grew various plants there. Peter and I had been offered a plot there, but we refused. Neither of us liked gardening, so we gave our plot to another one of the couples there.

The garden was actually a greenhouse. All of the plants there naturally grew in the habitable areas of Gonstalunia, and seemed foreign in the vast jungle of Allofar.

"Kiri!" A voice called out to me. I immediately recognized the voice as Celia's, and turned to greet her. She waved from the doorway, and ran to catch up with me. Her bright blue shirt accented her eyes and hugged her body's natural curves. Her khaki Capri's went well with the shirt, and ended mid-calf. I gave her an arm's length hug in greeting as she fell into step with me.

"Susan says you haven't been feeling well lately, so I figured I should see how you're doing." She stated. I laughed softly, and shook my head.

"No, I'm fine really. I've just had this cold lately. Susan gave me some vitamins, that's all." I replied, "I needed some anyway, to make sure I'm getting enough for the baby." Celia looked down at my abdomen, which had just recently started to grow.

"How many weeks do you have left?" She queried.

"Mmm…About 18." I responded, counting out the time in my mind.

"Wow, so you're halfway there, aren't you?" Celia marveled. As the youngest child in her family, Celia hadn't received much exposure to babies. Her curiosity amused me, and I was more than happy to humor her.

"Does the baby move yet?" She asked as we continued to walk through the garden. Again, I laughed.

"Oh, yes. He seems to be moving nearly all the time." I said, my exasperation showing, "especially when I want to sleep." Knowing what question would follow, I took her hand and placed it on my belly. Celia's eyes widened as she felt the baby kicking.

"Cool!" She exclaimed, drawing out the word so it had two syllables. I silently agreed with her. Although the seemingly constant kicking tired me, it did amaze me that something was growing inside of me. I couldn't wait for the day when I could hold my son in my arms, and teach him about all the wonderful things the world had.