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Part 2
Sat Oct 21, 2006 15:59 (XFF:

Sadly, all good things come to and end. When Khaji turned four years old, her mother returned to take her away. She stared at her mother and screamed at the top of her lungs. Elsine put her hands over her ears glaring at Sua.

“How do you shut it up?”

“Elsine, she’s a child. She doesn’t know who you are. How can you expect her to go with you? Ludin and I are all she knows. Then this stranger comes along and takes her out of her comfort zone.”

“We had a deal Sua. You would raise her till she could work, she can work now. Hand over my child.” Sua folded her arms under her breast and turned away from Elsine. Ludin tried to comfort her. Sua stormed off into the house. Ludin kneeled down in front of Khaji.

“All right my little muffin cake, you’ll be a sweetie and help your mother out.” Khaji sniffed.

“Not mom. No want to go.” She sobbed.

“I know hon, but your mother is a very busy person and she could use a constructive helping hand like you. I know you are the right person for the job.”

“You do?” Her sobs subsided. Ludin nodded.

“I’ll miss you, but you will come back and visit.” Khaji nodded. She sniffled and hugged Ludin.

Ludin frowned at Elsine and lifted the child into the back of the wagon. “She will be alright.” Elsine nodded and shook her brother’s hand. “Take care of her.”

“I will.” Elsine climbed into the wagon and signaled for the horse to go. She heard sobs from the back of the wagon and ignored it. She had another city to be at and a crying child was the least of her concern.

In Amador, Elsine pulled the cart to a halt. “We are here. Run to the herbalist and get what I told you. Then you have the afternoon to yourself. Be back before sun down, I’ll need help tearing down.”

Khaji nodded and jumped from the back of the wagon. She knew exactly where the herbalist’s shop was. The sooner she got there the more time she had to find a book to read. Her mother had made sure she could use number along with reading and writing. She smiled to herself and skipped. It was a beautiful day and she had the whole day to herself. She didn’t have to follow her mother’s orders or be under the horse whip because she’d done something her mother disliked. She made it to the shop in one piece.

A bell chimed as soon as Khaji opened the door. She smiled as the jovial old woman came around the counter to greet her.

“Same as always little one?”

“Indeed Luna.” Khaji paused to smell some of the flowers in the window. “I get the day to myself.”

“Oh? Mother in a bad mood again?” Khaji nodded.

“She hates having me around. She can’t stand me.” Luna handed Khaji a bag full of herbs.

“Yes she can dear. It’s her way of saying she loves you.” Khaji laughed and handed Luna the money.

“Luna, I gave up believing there was love in my mother many years ago.” Khaji waved as she left, the bell chiming again.

Luna shook her head and muttered. “So young and yet so old.”

It didn’t take Khaji long to sneak into the library. She knew the place by heart. She soon found the history section. She enjoyed reading about the Age of Legends. Granted the library and Amador didn’t have a large section on the Age of Legends, so Khaji had read it three times already. I think today will be about the Trolloc Wars. She skimmed the books finding the book she wanted. She snuck down the hallway to the upstairs. She knew the perfect place to seclude herself and read in complete peace. She sat down in her corner, and opened the book.

Hours later Khaji closed the book at looked out the window. If I don’t leave now I’ll never get back to the market in time to help Elsine. She sighed and snuck back downstairs to replace the book. She left the library, and glanced at the sun in the sky. She was running behind. Oh blood and ashes. She ran as fast as she could to make it to the market. She was out of breath when she reached it, and too late. Tears fell down her cheek as she panted for breath.

“KHAJI!” Elsine shouted when she spotted her daughter. “I told you I wanted you back to help tear down. You’re late.” Elsine put her hands on her hip, glaring at Khaji. Khaji winced, still trying to catch her breath. “I see you have nothing to say for yourself, how typical.” Elsine sniffed and reached into the wagon for the horse whip. “Now, since you can’t make it here on time and you have nothing to say for yourself. It’s time to teach you what I mean by on time.” Khaji screamed with what breath she had and bolted. She was tired, but she didn’t want to be whipped again. Something in her mind just told her to run.

She rounded a corner, and stopped dead in her tracks. There before her stood two White Cloak officers. She froze, staring up at the two men. The looked down at her with suspicion. Before they could respond, Khaji skirted between the two horses and through the alleyway. They shouted after her, but the two horses were hard to turn quick enough to catch her. She knew exactly what they thought she was doing, stealing. She found a box in the alleyway and crouched behind her. Her heart was pounding and her breath was shaky. She couldn’t keep running. She would have to go home, back to the horrible woman. She pulled her knees to her chest and cried.

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