Site icon Alexander Hammil


She’d crashed on the planet, gosh, almost twenty years ago now, and the couple whose hog waller she’d crawled out of had been nice enough to take her in, teach her the language, adopt her, like. They didn’t talk much about the past, but she got the feeling that they’d lost at least one kid before she came around, maybe more. They certainly treated her like family, but there was always just a little bit of distance there, a little bit of an expectation that, old as they were, they’d live to bury her yet.

Maybe so.

By the standards of her previous life this didn’t qualify. Nights they froze, winters they half-starved, there was too much work to do for the three of them and not nearly enough food to go around. They slept when it was dark, ate boiled grass some years; there wasn’t a book in the house and she wasn’t sure they could have read if there’d been anything to read.

Still. She wasn’t idle, and she wasn’t useless, and if they kept her just a bit at arm’s length, well, it was the rare summer night that she didn’t go out to the flat rock at the edge of the woods and pick out the star she’d come from, or scan the sky for a sign, any sign, that someone was looking for her, that there was life beyond this field, this county, this country, this land, this world.

But she wasn’t unhappy. Things could definitely be worse.

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