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from Aradia's Diaspora by Susan Woerner

Copyright © 2018–2020 Susan Woerner

Scene 7

“It will take them a while to come into the wood. They do not like the dark and they certainly do not like the wood in the dark,” the rider said.

Still panting, I held out my hand. “Thank you,” I said, “thank you … ?”

“Isobeau,” she said. She pulled her hood back and smiled, sticking out her own hand in return.

Is it just so dark in this woods, or is her skin purple? Like eggplant-purple?

“And you must be the witch,” she said.

“No, not a witch,” I said. Stop staring.

“Oh, then you are something other than what they called you back there,” she said.

“Yes. Wait. What?” I asked.

Isobeau looked me up and down - at my jeans, sweatshirt, my short hair, my sneakers.

“You say you are not a witch? Then why is your skin so? Pink?” she asked, “Where is your riding cloak? What are those things on your feet? I assume you have feet and not hooves or paws or something.”

“My shoes?” I asked, looking down at the ash-smudged white Converse I was wearing.

“I do like them. From how far away do you come? I would like to go there for a pair of coverings for myself,” she said.

“I don’t know where I am exactly, so I’m not sure how far away from hom...

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