I ran down the road, looking for someone special. Someone I needed to talk to right now.
And then I saw her, walking on the road a little ways ahead of me. Eve Parker, my best friend.
“Eve!” I called.
She turned around me. “Rosilia!”
I fell into step beside her. “I’ve got a problem,” I told her. “Sylvia saw me riding the way men ride, told Mother, and now I can’t ride my horse for two weeks! And now I can’t exercise her, either . . .”
Eve reached over and gave my arm a squeeze. “I’ll exercise your horse if you want, Rose,” she offered kindly.
I smiled. “Thank you, I’d like that.”
“Oh!” Eve exclaimed. “So you’re coming to the dance, too?”
About a week ago, I, along with lots of other young ladies, had been invited to a dance. I had known that Eve would go, and that she would probably try to get me to come, too. “Sorry, no,” I said. “Dances just aren’t my thing.” When I saw the disappointed look on Eve’s face, I added,”But I’ll walk there with you.”
“Yay!” she cried, throwing her hands up in the air. “Thank you!”
When we got to the house the dance was at, I went inside with Eve. There was only four people in the room, not including me and Eve, and it looked like we had gotten there early. Someone was setting up a table in the back, the musicians were no where in sight, and a group of girls talked as they waited for the guests to arrive. I recognized two of the girls: Abigail and Ariana, the identical twin daughters of the host.
Eve said farewell to me and then ran off to join the girls.
I had one foot out the door when I heard someone call my name.
I glanced over my shoulder and saw that it was Benjamin Woods.
But I was already out the door.
When I reached home, I saw Mother sitting on a wicker chair in the courtyard.
She smiled when she saw me. “Rosilia! Come sit down.”
I sat down on the low stone wall beside her. “What is it, Mother?”
“Well . . .” she began. “Your fifteenth birthday is only two days away. And, you know what your father used to say? I’m sure it’s just some silly thing he made up, but still . . . Well, he said that fourteen would be your year. And as you won’t be fourteen much longer, would you go *cough* adventuring tomorrow? Just to see if something happens?” Mother asked.
Did she really just ask me to go adventuring when just earlier today she had scolded me for not riding sidesaddle? I tried to look shocked at the idea, but it was hard not to look pleased. “Alright, Mother. I’ll do it for you,” I said. What I had really wanted to say was “YES SIRREEE!!!!” But I didn’t say that, just for the sake of trying to be polite for Mother.
“Thank you, Rosilia.”