A mysterious young woman is making her way to Sanctuary to find her father. Who is she and who can her father be? She’s already shown herself quite capable of taking care of herself and her light fingered touch keeps her in spending money.
“What’s wrong, Pete, she want more meat than you’ve got?”
“Maybe this one prefers a pretty boy… hmm?” One came up to her, a little too close, trying to impress her.
“Hey, missie, you want a REAL man?”
His voice rose to a girlish pitch at the last, for she’d reached out & grabbed the crotch of his pants in a firm grip. She looked him in the eye & squeezed.
“No, I like a man with more balls than you’ve got. When you grow up, sonny, perhaps you can find a real woman, til then, the doxies are all you’ll have, for you’d not get any lest you paid for it.” With a final squeeze, she left him.
She turned her back on the jeers and cat calls now directed at the dock worker & made her way to the village. She’d heard there was a tavern there which her father had frequented. It seemed as good a place to start as any…. Now truly she was on her own, but well paid, the ferry man had done good trade today and hadn’t been to the bank. Fat fool. She grinned and walked to the lights she saw ahead of her.
The sparkling lights beckoned her onward as her steps slowed, unsure now of her destination. Suppose he wasn’t there. Suppose he was?! Suppose no one knew him. Suppose they all did? Suppose they laughed at her, suppose he didn’t care to love her? Her steps faltered & she tripped over a furrow in the field she crossed without seeing it. Treading more carefully, she walked with more resolution than she felt to the lights ahead. She heard laughter & voices, music and singing, making her feel all the more left on the outside.
As a child, the same. Her playmates, she could not call them friends, chided her since she had no father. “Bastard brat” their mothers called her & she was shunned by all for her father’s absence. No one believed her mother had been married for none had met her father. Did she face the same rejection here? She hesitated on the steps of the tavern, hand out to the door, irresolute & afraid. The decision to open was made for her when the door swung wide hitting her in the face. A young man stepped out and greeted her.
“Whoops! Hello miss! Be ye all right?” He peered at her in the light from the inside. “Come in here, we’ll put a poultice on it for you. Oy, Sasha, I’ve slammed a lassie with the door! A poultice if you please!”
A pretty, dark haired woman approached her & looked her over carefully. “I see that you have. Please, miss, come inside where we can see to you better.” Her firm grip was gentle, but compelling. She smiled brightly at the girl. “I’m Sasha, proprietress of this tavern. Please come in & let’s see to that bump.” She raised her voice to call over the noise of the crowd, “Alli, a cool cloth if you will! Hellfire’s slammed the door into this young lassies’ face!”
The girlcradled her battered cheek. “Hellfire is it? Good name, for my face burns like hell.” Her eyes watered as she tried not to cry.
Sasha turned in mock anger on the young man. “You should be more careful! You could have seriously hurt her!”
He looked playfully abashed & bowed his head to her. “Aye, my lady,” he groveled & sniveled. “I be only an ignrnt fisherman & b’aint be knowin the better ways of manners an such like. Spect tis the only way I’ll find me a woman is to beat her senseless and drag her off! Hey lassie, I’ll be getting my uncle in here, he’s a healer of some skill, he’ll put ye to rights.” With that, he bowed his way out & this time opened the door more carefully.