Today was day 18 for my broody and when we pulled the eggs inside to candle we noticed one was missing. And the whole nest reeked of rotten egg. At some point in the last week, one of the eggs broke and got all over the other eggs I cleaned the remaining eggs up a bit with just plain warm water and wiped them dry before we candled. Two of the eggs were clearly quitters, and we pulled those out. Two of the eggs had vigorous movement (of course, just about the last two we candled, I was really starting to loose hope). And the remaining 5 eggs all look appropriately developed for day 18 but we could not see any movement that we were sure of.
We dumped all of the old nesting material and replaced it, but we weren't really able to do anything to clean up the hen and she does have some grossness stuck to her belly. Now I guess we get to sit on pins and needles until Wednesday to see if this unfortunate turn of events has ruined the hatch. It wasn't even the egg I would have expected to explode either. When we candled at day 11, there was one that I was pretty sure had probably quit, but not sure enough to pull it. That one was one of the two that we pulled tonight. The egg that broke was one that we had seen movement in last week, and the chick appeared to be normally formed.
I guess I just need someone to tell me that it'll [probably] be ok. I know there's not much else we could do now to change the outcome. But they were all developing so nicely, especially for shipped eggs. And me being due any day now myself means my hormones are not helping matters any!