“Well, you can’t exactly say something like that and expect me not to ask questions.” It started to rain and the droplets hit the window of the bus with a dismal splatter, as though they couldn’t really be bothered to fall.
“You’re right. I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have mentioned it at all in the first place. It’s probably against the rules, anyway.”
“Rules?” He was being altogether too mysterious for me. I didn’t like it when people hinted at things, and then didn’t explain. It didn’t seem fair.
“Forget I said anything. This is too public a place to talk about this, anyway. Anybody could hear.” Sean sighed and looked towards me. I was sitting, staring at him, with my legs and arms crossed, and my hair was falling down over my face. I imagine that it was quite a severe appearance, but I wanted to know what he was talking about.
“Then let’s go somewhere else. Come on, Sean! You can’t expect me not to ask questions: I’ve already told you that. I’m an inquisitive person and you’ve just given me something else to be nosy about. It’s your own fault, to be honest.” I moved my fiddle case so that it wasn’t pressing against my legs and turned to face out of the windows. “Besides, I don’t really want to go home.”
“Why not, Ruth?” His face was suddenly compassionate, and I felt a pang in my heart. Why did nobody else listen to me like this? “Is something wrong?”
“Not exactly. It’s complicated. Please, can we not talk about it?” Talking just made it hurt more, and I’d tell him later, when I was ready. Not now.
“All right. And I’ll make a deal with you, too. If you take me somewhere more private, then I’ll tell you what I meant. I’ll tell you where I’m from and what I am. Nothing more guaranteed. But is that enough for you?”
“A deal usually means I give you something back,” I said, slowly. “What do you want from me?”
“A tune,” he whispered. “Give me a tune and I’ll tell you everything you want to know.” I nodded.
“What are you, a faerie?” He laughed out loud at that.