Deidre Dawn - Farmer's ApprenticeMature

Dawn had always been my favourite time of the day. Everything always seemed new as the sun broke over the horizon, heralding a new day. I had been named for the Dawn, gifted with it as a surname by the couple who had unexpectedly found me at that time. There had never been any clue as to who I was to offer them any other surname, apart from a birthmark in the shape of a leaf on my arm and so they had given me the dawn as a name.

It was dawn now as I went about the farm, feeding the chickens. I knew that Janith, my master was over with the cows. She always was the one who took care of the cows. At times it made wonder if the rumors of her being able to commune with them were true.

My task with the chickens done, I headed for the fields. There was a crop of berries which the earth had told me would be perfectly ripe today and I was eager to pick them. I stowed the eggs, and picked up a new basket.

Now kneeling in the fields, I sank my fingers into the dirt, feeling the rich currents of the Earth. In this manner the earth could communicate with me in a way. I could read the earth, feel when a certain crop would be ready, and when others might need more intervention on my part. This was my power, my domain. 

Withdrawing my fingers from the ground, I set to picking the berries, sampling only a few as I went. Janith soon joined me. "You were right, today is the perfect day to pick them," she offered, her own hands touching the ground before she too set about picking the berries. While we could possibly use magic to convince the plants to drop the berries, the fruit was always riper, and less bruised when we picked it ourselves. And there was something relaxing about the task. 

Janith and I worked in silence for a while, each in our way communing with the earth through picking the berries. It was a ritual to thank the plant for its gift to us and to thank the earth, something we did when we finished with each plant. 

"They truly are the most delicious berries," Janith observed later, as we finished up on the row we were in. "You have done well my apprentice." 

I had been allowed to plant these berries myself, to nurture them and to manipulate the earth as needed to ensure the quality of the fruit. They were the first such plants in which I had been given complete control.

"Thank you Janith," I replied, bowing my head. 

"You should take them to market with us this morning. Come, we must be off in the cart now," 

I glanced up at the sky. We had picked berries for a few hours and yet it was still early morning, plenty of time to join Janith's other apprentice at the market to sell our wares from the week. We always arrived in this manner, one of the apprentices arriving early with over half of our goods, and the other and the master arriving later, after the morning tasks were completed. There was too much to do on the farms to have it any other way. 

The End

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