A short story by Mary H. Schaub

Publishing History

Timeline Notes

  1. p323. 'Merreth had herself been something of an unexpected traveler, for nearly eighteen years earlier, at the turn of the Year of the Crowned Swan, she had been a foundling abandoned at the Abbey's door.' 'The Abbess at that time might have known or suspected something about Merreth's origins, but she died of a fever when the child was about a year old, and left no instructions other than that Merreth was to be cared for.'1
  2. p324. 'Merreth was about fifteen on the winter day that the old blind wise woman [Willow] appeared at the Abbey's side gate, alone except for an equally elderly horse and a few hampers of dried herbs and parchments.' 'She [Willow] welcomed Merreth's request to learn about plants.'
  3. p325. Willow: "Let me arrange to speak with the Abbess, and do you come back before you depart. It is fitting that we should ask Gunnora's blessing upon your venture." Willow instantly sensed Merreth's discomfiture. "No, I do not mean a formal invocation service by the whole company of Dames; I suggest a quiet prayer by the two of us. It is my believe that Gunnora will hear an individual plea as well as a chorus, especially if the supplicant be sincere."2
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