Emma walked though the meadow, to the woods on the opposing side. She carried only two things, her money left to her by her parents and and a small hand gun. She was leaving the world she knew. This was what her Mother prayed for.
The woods, a land that was forbidden to the children of the small village. The men would travel to the other side of the woods, but always returned with stories of lions, great walls of fire and other terrible things. Emma had been warned from a early age to stay away. Never to cross the lilac Bush that rested in the meadow.
She was passing the Bush when a old man appeared from the wood.
This man was the one leading her to the other side. To the outside world. The man had a face filled with age. His stick was well worn, if it lived, it would have millions of stories. The stories him and the man shared.
Emma greeted the man with a warm smile. She understood the need of trusting this man. Her was her hope of getting to the other side.
"Hello." She said kindly, wanting to appear well raised.
" I got a letter saying I would be taking Max Gilbert's child. I was ready for a
boy, not a petite little girl."
"I'm a women." Emma said boldly.
"How old?" The man said.
"Seventeen." Emma smiled, and held out her money. "How much do you charge?"
"Nothing. But you have to trust me and my sons."
"Sons?" Emma had never heard if him having sons.
"I have four. I will take you to the first one, John. He and the others will guide you to the other side. I am much to old to make the journey now."
Emma nodded. She understood.
"I will take you on one other condtion. You must marry one of my sons."
"Why? I have no family to pay my dowry, nothing to offer." Emma spoke the words easily. She had nobody. These boys didn't too.
"You will know if you make it." Emma nodded and followed the man into the woods.