A door crashed, shaking the three-room house. Marian cringed as the brush her sister held yanked her head back. She barely heard the door slam shut again, overshadowed as it was by the accompanying rough voice. "Where's my hot breakfast?"
Terra moaned. "Why in the Rift couldn't business keep Hayden away until after Courtship?"
Marian snatched the brush from her sister's limp hand and shoved it in the single dresser drawer. "Hurry! You don't want another one of Father's talks."
"He's not my father."
"All the more reason he'll turn on you. You don't want your tinker showing up while you're nursing a black eye." Marian's stomach clenched as she pulled on a long tunic. Had falling in love dampened Terra's fear of Father?
Terra waited by the door, gnawing on her lip. Marian gave her older sister's hand a squeeze.
Mother's soothing murmurs carried to them through the clatter of pots and pans in the other room.
Marian turned back to the looking glass and examined herself in the tunic. "No, this won't do," she said to her reflection.
"You don't understand either!" Terra pouted. "You're just like father. Listen, there's something . . . I mean, I'm not--"
Her sister's words cut off abruptly as Marian slipped off the tunic and turned to face her. Terra's face, handsome rather than pretty, wore a strange expression as her eyes took in Marian's nakedness. Then Marian noticed something else she hadn't anticipated--her sister's tinker. It seemed that Terra was firmer than Marian ever expected.
Opening: Mary.....Continuation: Anon.