Daily Prompt provided by Community Pool! This is a continuation of the Daily Prompt from yesterday. You can find it under my blog post “Abandoned.”
Firth of Moray, Scotland. 1314.
Tears trickled down Ferelith’s face once more. For the first time that morning she felt at peace. She opened her eyes and wiped away any evidence of her crying. She didn’t want to risk Bathsheba’s threat of feeding her to the dogs.
As she hobbled towards the house Ferelith finally realized that her knee was bleeding. Despite the filth of her dark brown dress, she could still see the bright crimson splotch. She had a feeling that Bathsheba wouldn’t approve of her being in the house with a blood soaked dress.
There was a gray puddle in front of the doorway. Ferelith knelt down and dipped the bloody stain into the water. The tips of her long hair skated across the surface. She grabbed a flat rock and scraped at the dress until she was satisfied all the blood was gone. Back on her feet Ferelith took a deep breath and pushed open the door.
“Ma’am?” Ferelith asked nervously. As she stepped into the dimly lit room she could see Bathsheba standing in front of a weak fire in the hearth. The room was large and long. The walls were made of stone and covered with hanging animal furs. A musky sweet smell filled the air and Ferelith could see the beady eyes of another greyhound watching her from beneath a large wooden table.
“Took you long enough,” Bathsheba snapped. “Get over here girl.” Ferelith was nervous approaching an open flame at the demand of the horrid woman. Walking as quickly as she could without enticing the greyhound to follow Ferelith stood next to Bathsheba awaiting her next request.
“Can you cook, child?” asked Bathsheba.
“Yes, ma’am.” Ferelith answered confidently. A small flame of hope began to flicker in her chest. She had been cooking for as long as she could remember. Before dying in the war, her father had been a spectacular farmer; renowned for his harvests. She had learned to make delicious breads and stews, and how to prepare vegetables and fruits of all sorts.
“You can’t be more than eight years old. Are you sure you can manage a flame?” Bathsheba asked arrogantly, never taking her eyes off of the hearth.
“I can ma’am,” said Ferelith. “I can make bread and stews as well. My Ma taught me.” Bathsheba turned her dark eyes towards the little girl. Ferelith held her breath waiting for a repremand, convinced she had said too much.
“Well then. I’ll expect nothing less by sundown,” Bathsheba sneered. Turning her back on Ferelith, she sauntered to the front door and disappeared outside.
“I can do this.” Ferelith said to herself, hope no longer abandoned.