Fiddlestix ran toward the river less than a mile away. There was a special place there she had always gone when she was upset. Her feet carried her there automatically, tears streaming down her face. Collapsing into a heap on the damp bank, she heard footsteps following her, but she did not look up, assuming it was Karl.
“Hey, chica,” Blacksmith’s voice was so unexpected, she stopped crying. “Listen, we gonna go now, or what? The men are asking about you. Let’s get out of here, okay?” He helped her stand up, eyeing her appraisingly. “He meant a lot to you, huh?”
She nodded, not trusting herself to speak.
His smile was gentle, warm with understanding. “There’s other men out there. Maybe you’ll find another one who’ll treat you right, eh?”
“Do you ever have regrets, Dario?”
“I have many. What kind?”
“Where you wonder what it would have been…
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