Shortly after the first anniversary of the couple’s first engagement (the failed one), Corinne gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. She had tufts of hair that were brown like her father’s but she had her mother’s eyes. She was a light baby but she was strong enough to survive childbirth and cry strongly as she left her mother’s womb. Both parents cried at the first sight of her and all of the maids who were positively ecstatic at the prospect of looking after her burst into tears at her adorable face too.
Corinne named the baby Keris after her mother and naturally all of Corinne’s family was invited to Dachshund Manor to visit the new addition to their family.
“When she is older you must bring her to visit Daniel,” Aunt Susanna told Corinne. “The two will be able to play together.”
Corinne smiled. “A wonderful idea.”
Corinne turned to Richard.
“I was going to ask, my dear,” she murmured, while her relatives were occupied with the baby and telling her how beautiful she was, “if Eric Stag might have a role in the upbringing of our daughter. I would like to keep him close - he really is a wonderful man.”
“Of course,” Richard replied. “You may choose whomever you like to aid us in looking after Keris.”
Corinne smiled widely.
“Thank you, my love. You are so good to me.”
And so Eric was called to Dachshund Manor to be told that Lady Corinne wanted him to be one of Keris’s initial tutors and also a playmate in times when other members of staff might be otherwise occupied. He accepted, thanking both Corinne and Richard, and on seeing the baby, beamed and promised her herself that he would be as kind a teacher and fun a playmate as possible.
During the first month of Keris’s life, every resident in Periville came to visit her. Each was enchanted, each brought her flowers and dresses (even though clothes were in abundance from the generous wedding presents) and each left with a memory of the wonderfully happy atmosphere of Dachshund Manor. Life truly was the grandest fairytale for everyone important to the Dachshunds. Richard turned out to have been the perfect man for Corinne: there was scarcely a moment when you could not find them together, reminiscing over funny or beautiful moments, or simply sitting in peace, their auras inextricable from each other as they radiated contentment. Being a Lady was exciting - she was more empowered to help her fellow inhabitants of Periville and grant the wishes of the little girls the group of which she had once belonged to before Richard had played any part in her life. And Richard was so glad that he had confessed his history to Corinne. There was no woman he had ever loved more in his life except from his mother and to have kept them apart would have been a crime. So, in short, everyone was cheerful.