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Cutting Time Part 1   1504.04.12  
Supporters Only!
Creators: Elizabeth Barrette (Writer)
Eshra faces challenges due to her late-maturing body.
Posted: 08/30/11      [No comments yet] ~ 4024 words.

This story or poem is for logged in supporters only! Here is a short excerpt to whet your appetite:

Eshra leaned against the pole. Her ears burned. Her throat ached. She could not shut out the increasingly strident argument, and she refused to run away as if she had no right to be in her own village, even if it was just a collection of tents in the summer gather right now.

"Of course he shouldn't have done it," Agliir replied, her voice sharpening. "We know that! We've been following the stupid rule longer than anyone else! The point is, he shouldn't have had to do it. Brujan is nineteen years old -- he should be a man, able to have sex with a woman and not be reduced to a few stolen kisses with a fourteen-year-old girl."

"It was more than a few kisses, Agliir, you know that -- Brujan and Latusha were caught fondling under the cloth. Besides, Brujan is a child, as are you all; and children are not permitted to indulge in sexual activities," said Gruben.

"Because of Eshra -- we're all still considered children because of stupid Eshra!" Agliir screamed. "Rubal started bleeding at twelve. I started at nine. I have been a child in a woman's body for half my life, Gruben! What do you think that's doing to me? What do you think it's doing to all of us?"

Eshra clenched her hands around the pole so hard that she drove splinters underneath her nails. She was eighteen, nearly nineteen now, but her breasts and hips barely curved and her body had yet to shed woman's blood.

Author's Notes

Eshra's character evolved from my musings about what would happen if a girl matured very late, given the way the Northerners handle the transition between childhood and adulthood. During character development, several canon board members asked about Eshra's backstory, which led to me jotting down a few scene sketches. Those eventually grew into this story.

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