An old woman watched her gentle queen struggle with the pain of her children’s birth. The queen’s attendants swarmed around her to make her as comfortable as possible. The whole kingdom waited with barely concealed excitement for the arrival of the twin princesses.
Outside the night was almost over. Only the brightest star remained, twinkling, and the colors of sunrise painted the sky. A soft breeze came in through the open window. It danced among the curtains and brought with it the scent that autumn was not far away.
It wouldn’t be long now. The queen had been born with special abilities and one of those was to have glimpses of the future. She had seen her children’s birth and knew when they would come. Everything had been prepared.
The old woman had been born with the same unique ability. She had used her gift to guide and counsel. She had been one of the queen’s special confidants. Not long ago she had had a vision and been forced to make a decision. Soon she would break the king’s and queen’s hearts.
The king’s large, gentle hands tightened their grip on the much smaller hand of the queen as she cried out and pushed. The midwife spoke encouragement. She informed the couple that the head had emerged and the queen pushed again. Finally the baby came fully out.
“It’s a girl,” the wet nurse proclaimed as a little foot was pinched and tiny lungs screamed her protest.
The King and Queen were given a small glimpse of their little girl. Just then the sun rose and light fell on the infant princess.
“She shall be known as Aurora Jacqueline. Aurora, because she came with the sun and Jacqueline, after my mother. She shall be queen after us,” the king declared and the little princess was taken away so she could be taken care of while the second child was born.
As the queen struggled again the old woman gently washed the tiny body with a soft washcloth soaked with warm water and infused with healing herbs. Her crying stopped once a soft blanket, bearing her name, was wrapped snugly around her. Bright blue green eyes looked up at the old woman with strong intent.
“Ah, the knowledge and instincts of babies,” the white haired woman sighed. Her wrinkled face broke into a smile. “If you could talk you would tell everyone who I am and the great deeds my comrades and I have done.”
The old woman looked about her to make sure no one was about to notice her. She drew the infant princess close to her and touched something on her wrist. They vanished without a trace.