Twisted metal tools littered the birthing room floor.
"Damnit..." the doctor cursed, throwing down yet another useless scalpel. "It's not responding to metal at all--or glass, or plastic. I've never seen anything like it."
The baby lay on her mother's stomach, her green eyes watching the doctor's attempt on her umbilical cord with unsettling intelligence. Her mother's face was drawn tight and carefully emotionless.
The husband, silent up until now, cleared his throat nervously. "You...uh, you could try iron."
The doctor looked at him like he had a toe growing out of his nose. "Iron? All we use here is stainless steel."
"Just try it!" Lisbeth shrilled, losing her composure. The doctor backed away.
"Y-yes ma'am. Let me try and find something." He turned and strode quickly out of the room, face sweating liberally.
Lisbeth turned to her husband. Her eyes were frightened. "Theo...you don't think..." Her whisper trailed off.
Theo let out a sigh so heavy that the honeysuckle in the vase next to the bed trembled and nodded their heads."I don't know, Lisbeth. But what else could it be?"
She bowed her head over the tiny, quiet child and wept.
The doctor re-entered the room. In his hand was a large, heavy-looking knife. "This is all we had. It's years and years old, but I sanitized it...and, well, we can try."
The doctor approached the bed. He didn't notice that Theo slid back in his chair uncomfortably, his hands sweating.
Slowly, he touched the dark blade to the umbilical cord, and watched in awe as it sliced through effortlessly. "My God," he whispered. Now he looked at Theo. "How did you know?"
"Lucky guess," he mumbled, smiling weakly.
Mr. and Mrs. Tangleweb left the hospital an hour later with their beautiful newborn daughter.