Some miles away Jessica was beginning to get back to her feet after her tumble down the large hill. Even though she had been at her full size it didn't prevent her from falling and she could tell that she had picked up some kind of injury.
Jessica panted as she slowly rose up ad she had to use a nearby hill to help keep her balance. She had heard a cracking sound as she fell and she soon discovered that this was her left arm. She could feel a searing pain from her arm and she discovered that she couldn't move it, she didn't need to be a healer to know that her arm was broken. She also had a couple of bruises on her legs from where she had fallen.
Rather than thinking about her own injuries she couldn't help but think about Wanda who was going through one of the most special but yet painful moments of her life. She knew that she had to get a healer to them so that the baby could be delivered safely and both mother and child would live.
With almost no choice in the matter Jessica continued on but this time she squeezed her gigantic body through the spaces between the hills. She knew that she could shrink herself but she still figured that it would be faster if she moved through the hills at her maximum size.
Eventually after much effort Jessica was able to get through the hills but several times she had brushed her broken arm against the hills and this had caused her pain. It was the first time she had ever suffered a broken bone. However this did make her remember something from her own past.
When Sir Tucker had been a child he had once broken his arm after falling out of a tree and although the local healer had been able to plaster his arm up it had been Jessica who had made sure that he stayed safe. Even with his broken arm Sir Tucker had tried to climb other trees but whenever he had tried she would always gently grab him and bring him safely to the ground. She would also act as a nurse of sorts to him when he had needed help, his family had been there for him as well but his older brothers had even mocked him over it. For these insults Sir Tucker's father would give his older sons a clout around the ear for their troubles. Once or twice she had thought about giving them her own clout on the ear but of course hers would be much more painful. However she didn't stoop to their level and she just did what she could to care for Sir Tucker.
As Jessica walked forwards she wondered what Sir Tucker would do for her if he saw her arm was broken. She had no doubt that despite everything between them that he would comfort her as best as he could. He would stop at nothing to find a healer for her and ensure that her recovery was as fast as possible. She would love him for every moment that he did this and she missed him more than she could admit. There had been long periods of time that they wouldn't see each other, normally these would be when he was out on an errand for his family's blacksmith business. However this time she thought that they might never see each other again. A fate that she never wished upon herself and was just another reason why she wanted to meet up with him when they agreed to.
Jessica walked on but she discovered that she had hurt her leg more than she had originally thought. It wasn't as bad as her arm but it was still enough to prevent her from walking at full pace. That would mean more time was lost and she knew that every second that was wasted put Wanda and her soon to be born child at even greater risk. It was the only thing that was keeping her going.
On more than one occasion she was spotted by people who would either look at her in utter disbelief or begin to run in terror. She paid these people no mind as she continued on, she could still hear them and one even called her a monster. There would have been nothing more than to prove that person wrong but now was not the time nor the place. She was beginning to see a town coming into view and she knew that it was the one that she had been travelling to. She still couldn't move any faster than she was already moving and she just hoped that her appearance wouldn't scare the healer.
Despite the fact that Jessica could see her goal she still couldn't make herself move any faster. To her it was almost embarrassing but with everything that was at stake she couldn't allow herself to let anything get in her way. No matter how much pain she felt she still walked on and all she hoped was that she could return to the expectant parents before it was too late.
After several more minutes Jessica did reach the town but unlike other times when she entered towns she didn't shrink herself. She remained at her full size and as expected her sudden appearance had panicked many of the townspeople. The majority of them stayed indoors but numerous men remained outside. This was a garrison of soldiers who also acted as the town's lawmen. Each of them were trained to deal with pretty normal things such as public disturbances and some were even able to execute a person. A towering giantess was something that they had never been trained for but they were still ready to defend their town with their lives if need be.
Jessica looked down and saw a few of these soldiers who had decided to form themselves into a line. The outer soldiers were all armed with bows and arrows while towards the centre they were swords and shields. She knew that she could take them down without much trouble, even with her injuries but it simply wasn't her way. She did stop herself several metres short of them and she waited for them to make the next move.
"Monster leave this town now or else we will have no choice but to destroy you," said one of the Soldiers who seemed to be the leader of this group. Each of the soldiers were wearing near identical armour and for the moment Jessica couldn't tell exactly which one was talking to her.
"For starters I'm not a monster," replied Jessica who seemed to be quite annoyed about them labelling her a monster. "I'm a person just like the rest of you." She still sounded annoyed but it was more centred around her arm which was still in a large amount of pain. "All I want is the town healer and I'll be on my way. I'll return him as soon as I can but I don't have a lot of time."
"A likely lie form a behemoth. We will not be relinquishing our healer so leave now while you still can."
"I'm not leaving here without the healer." It seemed that her stubbornness was beginning to get the better of her. It seemed that resolving this situation peacefully seemed to be more out of reach than the sun itself. "The last thing I want to do is hurt any of you but there are lives at stake right now."
"Like I said before you're not taking the healer. We've warned you monster, you've left us no choice but to defend ourselves." He lifted his arm up and for the first time Jessica realised which one of the soldiers were actually talking to her. He was quite a tall figure but with his armour there was no way of knowing what he looked like. "Men on my command, ready, aim."
"Wait!" shouted a voice. This had caught Jessica by surprise as she had expected to be bombarded with arrows.
Everyone looked to where the voice had come from and they saw an old man walking towards them. He wore a black garb and the hair that he had left was completely white. It even seemed like he had trouble moving around but she noticed that he didn't seem to be afraid of her.
"Return to your home sir," said the Lead Soldier who turned to look at him. He knew exactly who this man was and for the moment was keeping it a secret from Jessica. "This monster won't be hurting anyone."
"But I heard her call for me," replied the man. "I wish to see what she wants from my services."
"I have come here looking for you," answered Jessica as she squatted down. She could still feel the pain in her legs as she squatted but in her mind it wasn't important. "I'm sorry to have caused all this trouble but I must insist that you come with me. A friend of mine has gone into labour and if you're not there to help deliver the baby I fear that both she and the baby might die."
"Your situation does sound important but how do I know that you can be trusted? We have never met before and if you don't mind my saying that the reaction of the town guard has made me cautious."
"I understand but we don't have time to waste." She thought for a moment before coming up with an idea that she hoped would ensure his co-operation. "You are familiar with a farmer of short stature named Brian and his expectant wife Wanda?"
"Yes, they have come a few times to see me over the last few years." He wasn't sure how Jessica could have known the couple unless what he suspected might actually be true. "Is it she who is in labour?"
"Yes she is the one." She then lowered her right hand onto the ground. "I promise I'll return you here as soon as I can but please can you come with me."
"Very well my very tall friend, you've convinced me of your honesty." The soldiers who were only a short distance away from her began to lower their arms. Although they were not particularly happy with it they could only respect the Healer's decision to go with her. At least then she would be leaving them much quicker.
The Healer with a small amount of reluctance did step onto Jessica's hand. She then lifted him up before standing back up to her full height. She winced in pain but she placed him on her shoulder before wrapping him with some of her hair for his own safety. Without giving much of a thought for the soldiers she began to walk out of the town and back towards the farmhouse. She had already taken longer than she would have liked but she knew that she didn't have long.
Unfortunately before she could actually leave the town the Healer reminded her that he hadn't gotten what he had needed so they had to make a short detour to his home before they could head out to the farmhouse. One thing that the Healer had noticed was that Jessica was only using her right arm. For now he said nothing about it as she walked as quickly as she could.
After several minutes the town was almost out of sight and Jessica still carried on with the Healer on her shoulder. He was holding onto a leather bag which contained many tools that he needed to help people. He was enjoying the view that he was seeing, like most people he had never seen the world from such a height. However Jessica wasn't really talking to him as she mainly concentrated on where she was going. He did see her wince every now and again and this did cause him some concern.
"You're hurt aren't you?" asked the Healer with a voice that showed that he was concerned about her.
"It's not important right now. There's an entire family waiting for me to get you to the farmhouse."
"That's all well and good but you can't ignore the fact that you're injured. From the movements I've seen of you I can tell that your left arm is broken and you most likely have some bruising on your legs. Your legs will heal in a relatively short time but your arm is another matter entirely. If you're not treated soon it will not heal properly and worse you might get an infection."
"You can look at my arm later but Wanda is the important one right now. As soon as I know that she and her baby are safe then I'll worry about myself."
"Ignoring injuries will only lead you to more trouble. However under the circumstances I do understand your motivation."
Jessica kept moving as fast as she could but eventually she came back to the dreaded hills. What happened last time was still fresh in her mind and she carefully tried to move between the hills like she did before. The gaps were tight for someone of her stature and a few times she brushed against her broken arm. The Healer saw each time she winched and he couldn't imagine the pain that she was in.
At one point Jessica's broken arm struck one of the hills with some force and the pain that she felt was unbearable. She let out a blood curdling scream that could be heard for miles in every direction. The Healer had to cover his ears in hopes that her scream wouldn't deafen him. She immediately help onto her broken arm in an attempt to try and null the pain but it did little to help.
The Healer insisted that Jessica stop so that he could try and help her but she refused. She was still fixated on getting him back to the farmhouse. She could imagine that Wanda was in much worse pain. She could see her face in her mind and she could only imagine what she was going through.
After much effort Jessica was eventually able to get through the hills without breaking any more of her bones. This was a relief and just a couple of miles away she could see the farmhouse. Everything seemed to be quiet but this was expected from this distance. Rather than wasting any more time she made her way towards the farmhouse. It was at a slower pace than when she left but she still thought that there was time.
Much to Jessica's relief it only took her a few minutes to make up the rest of the distance and she was right outside of the farmhouse. She unwrapped the hair from the Healer and then lowered him down to the ground right outside of the door. She watched as he raced inside and then she began to concentrate on shrinking herself.
Pain once again shot right through Jessica's arm as she shrank and she tried to keep her mouth shut. The last thing she wanted was to scream like that again and she even had to fight back the tears. Thankfully before long she was back down to being eight feet tall and she staggered into the house once again.
The sight she saw was one of utter chaos as the Healer was tending to Wanda who was still in labour. Brian was holding her hand as he tried to comfort his wife as best as he could but there wasn't much that he could do. Jimmy was doing what he could to help as he was bringing Wanda some water.
Jessica wanted to help but all she could do was slump down on a nearby chair so that she could try and regain some of her energy. She heard the chair creak under her weight, she didn't need to be reminded about the fact that even though she was at her smallest size she was still very heavy. She was not overweight for her body type but unfortunately normal things like chairs were usually ill suited for her.
She also knew that there was nothing more that she could do for the couple. She had done everything that she could and now only had to wait to see what happened. She hoped that her efforts had been worth it. All she could hear was the screams of Wanda who was in a lot of pain with the Healer giving her support. Brian's voice could be heard from time to time but he was remaining quiet.
After what seemed to be an eternity for Jessica she began to hear a baby crying and this made her bring tears into her eyes. Normally she would never like to hear a baby cry but under this circumstance it was one of the most beautiful things that she had ever heard. It meant that a new person had been brought into the world.
It took some effort for Jessica to get out of the chair and enter the room where Wanda was lying. She could see a tiny baby in the arms of his mother, the baby was wrapped in a blanket and she could also see something that she never thought that she would see. Brian was actually crying, after the tough man persona that Brian had demonstrated it almost seemed inhuman to see him cry.
Rather than going inside Jessica remained where she was as she didn't think it was the best time to see the new parents. The baby was born now but they were likely not entirely out of danger just yet. She thought that her place was to be there and she just waited for news. It almost seemed strange to her that despite all the strange things that had happened like having her mind taken over by Lord Nostory or being imprisoned for a murder that she didn't commit. It was this point on this quest where she was the most worried, she thought it might have been some kind of maternal instinct.
After several minutes the door to the bedroom opened and Jessica saw the Healer walk out. His gloved hands were covered with fluid and some of it had even gone onto his clothes. Rather than standing up Jessica remained where she sat. Not just because of her injuries but also because she didn't seem to be so tall. The Healer was very surprised with one thing however, that was Jessica at a smaller size. He had only seen her at her full size, seeing her small enough to fit into a house had caught him by surprise but he could see the concerned look on her face.
"How are they?" asked Jessica as she looked up to the Healer. She could feel her heart pounding in her chest.
"T-they're fine," replied the Healer. He still couldn't get over seeing Jessica so small but he put that into the back of his mind for the time being. "The baby was delivered successfully and from what I can gather both mother and baby are in good health."
"That's such a relief to hear." Her mood instantly changed from one of panic to one of joy. It made her feel that every injury that she had suffered from was all worth it just to know that Wanda and her child were safe. She went to move but she felt the pain of her arm and instantly it made her remain exactly where she was. She tried to hide her pain but the Healer could see it as clear as day.
"Now that Wanda and her son are healthy it's time that I took a look at your injuries. If you don't mind I would like to take a look at your arm."
"Yeah sure." She thought that she would only have to keep it were it was but for the Healer this wasn't enough.
"I'm going to have to see your arm outside of your clothing so that I can have a really good look and deduce the exact extent of your injuries."
Jessica was reluctant to do so. At first she tried to roll up her sleeve but unfortunately it couldn't go high enough. In the end she began to undo her dress with her good hand and with great difficult and pain was able to take it out. For a brief moment her left breast was completely exposed but she kept the rest of her dress up and she used it to cover her breast. The Healer had helped her with this but he was too much of a gentleman to make her keep her breast unclothed. He had also seen plenty of naked people over his time as a healer so seeing Jessica's breast was practically nothing new to him.
The Healer began to properly examine her arm and he didn't really like what he was seeing. He could see all the bruising on it and from the pain that Jessica was in h could tell that something was definitely broken. Before the examination he had taken off his gloves but he did go into his bag.
Quickly he began to wrap what seemed to be a bandage over Jessica's entire arm but rather that it being dry it felt very wet. He also made sure that her arm remained in the right position until it was completely wrapped up. It felt strange on her skin and it sent a shiver running down her spine.
"That should do it," said the Healer. "Keep your arm in that position until it is completely dry. Keep it in that cast for six weeks before you either go and see me or another Healer to have it removed."
"Thanks," replied Jessica although she could still feel some pain. "You don't mind just helping me put it back into my sleeve?"
"I doubt that you will be able to put your arm in the sleeve. With the cast on it'll be too big for your sleeve."
"Don't worry about it, my dress can stretch itself to whatever size it needs to be." It was the same thing that happened whenever she grew or shrank in size. No matter how big she grew the dress would always fit her.
"Hmm that is very interested." He thought for a few moments and since he had seen her both at her largest and smallest sizes he could see how this could be true. It was beyond his understanding although he did suspect magic was involved.
The cast around Jessica's arm did dry very quickly and within a few minutes it was dry enough for her to put through her sleeve. It was quite a pain for them to put the arm in the sleeve but as the Healer pulled on the dress he was amazed to see it stretching and he thought that if he just ran with it still in his hand it would just continue stretching further and further until he was too tired to go any further.
Eventually Jessica was able to put her casted arm into the sleeve and she could see the fabric stretching to accommodate her now wider arm. It slid in as if it were a hand putting on a glove and before the Healer finished he did help her lace the back of her dress up again. It was almost impossible for her to do with one hand.
The Healer also took a look at Jessica's bruised legs and he deduced that the injuries to them were not as extensive as the one to her arm. They would heal by themselves over time and didn't really need any treatment.
There was one problem that Jessica did realise, with the cast on she wouldn't be able to change size with it. Her arm would break out of the cast before it was fully healed and this would only cause more problems. It almost seemed alien to her that she was now forced to be at a smaller size for what would be several weeks. This also meant that she wouldn't be able to keep her promise to the Healer by returning him home as quickly as she originally stated she would.
Just as Jessica was given the all clear Jimmy stepped out of the room. He looked over to her and she stood up. She could guess what he was going to say but she allowed him to speak before she did anything else.
"Is everything alright?" asked the Healer as he thought that he was on the verge of being called back inside.
"Yes everything is fine," replied Jimmy. If anything the terror that he had felt over the last couple of hours was worse than the fear he had felt the previous night when he had been in Jessica's hand. "Brian and his wife just want to say a few words to Jessica." The danger was over and he was beginning to relax. Despite his shady background he didn't like to see people die, especially babies.
Jessica took her cue as she stepped into the room. She ducked her head to get under the doorframe and she remembered to not entirely stand up straight. She saw Wanda lying in bed with her new-born baby son in her arms. He was wrapped in a blanket and although he had been crying he was now calm and was just enjoying being in his mother's arms. Brian was sitting on a chair right next to his wife and son and he was more or less moved to tears. He was a tough and proud man but this was enough to make him drop all of it and just be happy for his wife.
"Jessica," said Brian as he looked up to her. She was speechless as she looked at the new family. "Words can't describe the gratitude that my wife and I have for you. Without you things could have gotten a lot worse but thanks to you I still have my wife and now I have my son as well."
"It was nothing really," replied Jessica as she tried to hide the fact that her arm had been broken. "You were the ones who originally showed me kindness by allowing me to stay under your roof. It was the least that I could do for you."
"Nonsense, you've done more than we could ever wish to repay. Our home is your home now, if you wish to stay you may for as long as you need and you won't have to work it off like before."
"That's very nice but it won't be necessary, as I said before there is someone that I need to meet up soon." She looked down at the baby and she thought that it was the most adorable thing in the world. She crouched down to take a better look at it but she didn't try to touch it. She was just waiting for the day when she had her own children. She could definitely tell that the baby looked like his father. "What's his name?"
"We're calling him Albert and if you don't mind we want Jesse to be his middle name," answered Wanda as she was still cuddling her new son. The process of childbirth had sapped all the energy from her body but she still had the strength to cuddle her son. This was a day that she certainly would never forget.
"Nothing would bring me greater joy." She could do nothing but smile as she felt that everything that she had just been through had been completely worth it to see this family happy.
In her mind Jessica began to picture herself in Wanda's position with Sir Tucker taking the role of Brian. She would be cuddling the baby that she and Sir Tucker had made together and it would make her truly happy. She couldn't help but be sad by what had happened between them and she knew that she would be much happier with him in her life rather than if he were removed.
Jessica kept going over the fact that Sir Tucker had sex with Gwen when she had been incarcerated for murder. She had been angry over what had happened, however she was understanding why he had done it. She was also feeling that the fact that he had told her was probably one of the bravest and most adult things that he had ever done. He had faced someone who he knew could crush him where he stood and told her about what he had done. He could have kept the secret to the grave and she would have been none the wiser but he had decided to tell her.
She missed Sir Tucker more than she could possibly express into words and the thought that there was even a chance that they couldn't be together broke her heart. She decided that when they met again she would give him the biggest hug ever.
There was one other thing that Jessica was very worried about, she wondered if Sir Tucker could forgive her for what she had done to him. He had told her on more than one occasion that he could look out for himself but she had not given him the chance. There was a small chance that he could have completed the Third Trial by himself but she hadn't given him the opportunity. When she had knocked him out she hadn't just hurt him physically but also in his heart where it had truly hurt the most. If the roles were reversed she wasn't sure if she could forgive such a thing.
Jessica could only hope that when she met up with Sir Tucker once again that the issues between them had been ironed out. She didn't want to take the long trek back to Morgan alone, she wanted to have him sitting on her shoulder like usual and she hoped that she would also be carrying Three Man's Treasure. However only time would tell whether this would come to fruition.