I lifted the crudely made spoon to my mouth. When I put the lumpy porridge in I sighed happily as the flavor of corn flooded my mouth. It was a corn puree of some sort, that much at least I could tell. The girl, Lillia, smiled at my expression and I grinned widely back at her.
“What?” I asked facetiously, “Have you never seen a guy who hasn’t eaten for three days before?”
She smiled and blushed embarrassedly. She was really quite beautiful with jet-black hair falling just to her shoulders and deep, brown eyes that sparkled with intelligence, belying her crude speech. She looked up and blushed again, more heavily this time and I realized I was staring. I quickly scarfed down the rest of my food and then stood up. “Thanks so much for the food, and for saving me from the beast.” I told her seriously.
I watched as she colored yet again. “Mother made food and men chased away beast. I just give you food mother has made.”
I smiled brightly at her. “Well thanks just the same,” I told her as I moved closer to her, wanting to get a better look at her. As I moved closer she hurriedly looked away, but it was too late. I saw that her face was criss-crossed with a myriad of puffy, purple bruises. I gasped and put my finger beneath her chin to lift her head up. “What happened to you?” I asked worriedly.
She looked away again; “Papa get drunk sometimes…” she trailed off. I could tell it was more than sometimes though; many of the bruises were an old yellow-brown color, which meant they had been dealt a long time ago…