Mirabelle looked over her shoulder at the house. Her father wanted her to marry and bear children with one of the village elders. She knew what would happen if she did that. She looked down at the village and thought about her sister.

Marabelle had been married three years and already had three children. She continually stayed at home, never going anywhere or doing anything. Mirabelle wanted more in her life. She wanted to meet new people and learn new things. She didn’t want to get married and raise children until she dropped.

Leaving half the laundry hanging on the line, the rest still in the basket, Mirabelle ran back down the hill to the house. She packed her bags and then ran out the door. She turned toward the road that led out of the village. If she went toward the village someone would stop her. They would tell her father and she’d never escape.

“Where ya goin’?” her younger sister called from the house.

“Collectin’ herbs,” she called back. “Finish the laundry. Bye.” Then she was gone, with Lulabelle’s farewells ringing in her ears.

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