A Rabbit Lost

Felicitas strolled down the street, a small rabbit clasped in her small hand. "Where to go today?" She had finally found some one who would buy her cloth dye at the market. Her small hidden purse jingled heavily with several copper and a few silver coins. Perhaps a tavern for a warm meal and a hot drink, yes, that seemed right. The Bitter Tree Tavern was close and so Felicitas walked up to the inn and slowly pushed its rather thick door open.


The warmth and noise hit her like a physical wall. None the less Felicitas moved forward and made her way towards the aroma of warm food, hawk like eyes flicking from face to face, trying to pick out trouble makers.


Thankfully, The Bitter Tree, despite the name, was a mild place, focusing more on tea and food, than on harder drinks. Felicitas took a seat near the large open hearth. She had just begun to regain the feeling in her feet when a waitress approached her.


"What can I get you, ma' dear?" The waitress was much older than Felicitas, by about forty years, but she still shone like a star. Her plump figure reminded Felicitas quite a bit of Grandma Yagami back in her old town.


Felicitas bit her cheek, "A bowl of ramen and some green tea?" She was still unsure of what was served here, but ramen or rice was to be a sure bet.


"Ok, dear. I be right back with that." The old woman's eyes glinted with merriment as she walked away. Perhaps it was Felicitas stuffed rabbit, or maybe just the fact that ordering had scared Felicitas so much.


When it came to dealing with her peers, Felicitas could be merciless. But dealing with her elders, that was an entire other story. Probably half the reason she was here, In Auvrynon, and not back at Wellwood Village. Maybe if her brother had stayed home, maybe if her mother had not died, maybe maybe maybe. It was too late for maybes and Felicitas knew it. She was safe and warm, for the moment. So she should enjoy it.


"Excuse me?" The voice was that of a young woman, probably in her early twenties. "Would you be adverse to me joining you?" The woman's accent was that of the educated cities of the south; prim and proper. But her voice held a tone of passion and kindness in it.


"N-no, not at all lady." Felicitas stumbled over herself in an attempt to seem proper and not reveal herself to be the country bumpkin she really was. Despite her stuttering, Felicitas was able bow from her seat.


"I'm no lady." As if to prove it, the woman gave a snort of amusement. "Just because I sound fancy doesn't mean much." The corner of her mouth lifted in the beginnings of a smile. "I've been rude, my name is Mia Nusami. What is yours?"


"Felicitas. Uh, Felicitas Natsuki." Felicitas tried to wipe the stupid look off her face and respond to this lady, who wasn't a lady. Thankfully a serving girl arrived with Felicitas' ramen and tea. Breaking the ice for them she asked for, and received, Mia's order. Felicitas took the opportunity not to speak by raising her mug of tea to he lips; her evil, malicious, boiling tea. Sputtering curses under her breath and holding her tongue between two fingers, Felicitas slowly realized that Mia was still watching her, an amused looked spreading across her face.


"You look like your having fun." Mia's eyes danced with delight as she handed over a shaving of ice. "Here, take this, it will soothe the pain."


"Ank oo." Felicitas attempted to speak around the lump of frozen water. Her words came out mangled and the attempt did nothing but to further Mia's mirth.


"Your new here, aren't you." It was a statement, not a question. "Do you have any housing?" Mia's face still held mirth, but now, It was also filled with compassion.


"No miss." Felicitas cast her eyes down. She did not like the truth, for it made her sound needy, but then again, her urge to tell this beautiful woman the truth was overpowering. "I am doing fine on my own though!" Felicitas always blustered like this when she was ashamed of something. And Mia saw right through it.


"I am in need of someone with skills in the sewing department. Might I be able to hire you?"


"I ah..." How had Mia known that she was good with the needle? "Ah, yes. I... I would be delighted."

END





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