Chapter 2 - Sunrise, and talk of the old times with a new friend.
An hour lay before them until sunrise. They passed the minutes first with talk of Finn's family.
Nana with her soups, which would always be met with adoring smiles and the rumbling of stomachs; and Grandpa Lyell, a prolific chess player. Finn's sisters Lisa and Mary, who liked to sing, and play card games on the woven rug opposite the bed well into the night.
He spoke of them so dearly, Ingrid thought. He, in fact, had been talking since they started walking and had hardly paused to take in air in all this time.
She had left only one relative behind, and that was her mother, Esther. Her sister Eloise had left when she was just fifteen. Ingrid was only seven. She didn't remember much, only her mother shouting about how Eloise would always value men over Eloise herself. She had put some food in a satchel and walked away, pulling a calf along with her by a rope around its mouth. Ingrid never saw her again. She wondered how her mother must feel. The thought was too much to bear. She put it away.
"What about you, Ingrid? You haven't told me anything! For all I know, you could be a pagan witch who breeds three headed dogs." Finn let out a large chuckle to show her he was joking. Ingrid smiled in reply, but she really wasn't sure how to respond. This was prescisely the question she didn't want to hear.
"I have a mother," she stated carefully. "Her name is Esther. We live together on a small patch of land. We keep cattle, and chickens, I make boots and leather bags in the winter, and grow crops in the summer. It's peaceful."
"Do you have a husand?"
"Any brothers or sisters?"
"No." She didn't know why she had said this, but it wasn't a lie. Her sister left when she was seven years old. She wasn't worthy of it.
Just as she said this they turned a corner, and Ingrid realised they had come full circle, back to the gate with the strange words. She clutched Finn's forearm and let him drag her into the crowds.
The town was like another universe in the morning, The lifeless stone walls she had been curled up against only an hour before were now littered with hanging washing, garments and shoes availible for sale. People bustled about the streets buying and selling and shouting rhyming couplets.
"Get your bread here, cheap not dear!"
"Our shoes are nifty and we're not shifty!"
"You'll go bananas for our delicious food!"
"I'm sure he didn't give that woman enough change..." Ingrid whispered.