Chapter Two (9)
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Deborah sat on the floor, running one hand mindlessly over the bear pelt beneath her and gazing into a fire she had built.

Mercy had brought them to Deborah’s old bedroom first, then escorted Dobbs to the nearby guest room. Japheth went with them, insisting he needed to speak with the burly servant before retiring. Deborah had stood on the threshold for a long moment, recalling the many hours she had spent alone in her room. It had been a refuge from her father’s icy disapproval and her mother’s unending piety.

The loneliness was a small price to pay for peace, she thought. My pillow absorbed an ocean of tears, and the walls bore witness to my rage.

The heat of the day had given way to a more seasonable evening chill. Deborah shuddered, t...

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