It was late, half past midnight, when the screams of a woman in pain were heard, and just moments after they started they ended. An eerie silence enveloped the large mansion. And then a babe's wailing started up. Jacob Wallace sat in his chair next the fireplace in the sitting room. He knew his mistress was giving birth to their baby upstairs. The doctor had informed him that he should wait in a different room for the babe to be born, for Loretta was frail, and the birthing would be a difficult affair. Hearing no more sounds other then the babe's constant squalling, he knew the answer as to Loretta's health long before the midwife brought the newly born, bright red, thrashing bundle to him and laid it in his arms. "I'm so terribly sorry my Lord." She whispered, choking back a sob. For everyone had loved his mistress dearly and had treated her as if she had been the lady of the mansion. Jacob gazed down at the baby dispassionately. "what is it." He asked, his voice was thick with unshed emotion. "It's a little girl,myLord." Suddenly an emotion rose to the surface and Jacob's lip curled up. His eyes shone bright with misplaced hatred. "Get it out of my sight. Take it away from here. I do not want this thing under my roof. It is not my child. Take it far away from here!" His voice was harsh and final, he nearly roared the last part of his statement. The midwife gawked at him, but scurried to nab the poor screaming infant from his willing arms. He sprang up from his chair and picked up his glass of brandyfrom the coffee table next to him, aiming at the fireplace, and threw it with all his might. It hit the brick wall and shattered loudly into pieces. The midwife gasped and turned away to protect the babe and ran off, deciding that perhaps it would be better for this poor little babe to be shown a loving family somewhere else. Surely Lord Wallace has gone mad with grief over Mistress Loretta's passing. Her body just simply could not handle the birthing of the babe, it was not the little girl's fault. Making her way to the kitchens, she could still faintly hear the Lord throwing furniture around in the other room. The baby whimpered, tired, and hungry no doubt. The midwife thought about where to send the babe. Surely someone...yes. She thought now of her distant cousin living out a few farming villages away from here. She had just had a babe of her own not too long ago, a boy if she recalled correctly. Surely she would understand and be willing to raise the girl up as her own for now. Nodding to herself, with her face set in determination, the midwife set about to get prepared for her and the babe's diparture. -17 years later-Zaya's face was flushed a bright pink, sweat beaded her brow from the hot sun beating down upon her as she stooped low to dump out the day's slop to the family pigs. She brushed her messyauburn curls off her forehead with the back of her hand and waited for the little pigs to come running up to eat. Shesmiled at the little baby piglets and their big, fat mother."Sweet little babes," she cooed."Too bad they'll be made into our dinners before too long."A deep voice said from behind her.Zaya turned and propped a hand on her slim hip, holding the slop bucket in her other arm. Hersky blue eyes narrowed as she turned to regard her older brother. "why thank you Thomas, your observation was delightful indeed." She said inthe haughtiest tone she could muster, and with her nose up in the air she strode past him, back towards their small farm house. He laughed and began to walk along side of her. "You and your fancy words I swear, girl. You sound like one of the smartest people I know."Zaya smiled, she took pride in all the reading and self educating she did. It was nice for someone to appreciate it. "Why thank you kind sir." She chirruped. Thomas regarded his little sister silently, he was four years her senior. and they were nothing alike. He was tall andof medium build, tanned and well muscled from being outside working in the fields all his life. His brown hairwas a wavy mess upon his head,and he had pale whiskey brown eyes.Zaya however, was very slim and short. With a mass of auburn hair, that curled into tight little ringlets, and the bluest eyes he had ever seen.With a small smattering of freckles across herpert nose, sheresembled a forest fairie and was named after one rightly so. "What is mother making for supper?" He heard her ask. Thomas snapped out of his daze and grinned down at her. "Nothing, you are making dinner tonight. Did you forget? That is whyI came to fetch you. Nothing was cooking when I got home." Zaya's eyes went wide andshe threw the slop bucket at him. Picking her skirts up in her hands she made a mad dashfor the house,still about a mile's wayahead of them. Thomas chuckled and shook his head at her. She spent so much time out by herself, doing her own thing, she forgot everytime it was her turn to cook supper for everyone.Usually he was having to come find her to remind her of it. He started jogging to catch up to her and they made their way back home. Later on that night Zaya lay in her bed, the quilts tucked up around her, everyone was sleeping soundly in thier own rooms. The house creaked and groaned quietly. Her ownPapa had built their house, and was very proudof it. He always loved to tellthe story of how hehad began buildingthe house the day he had met their Mama, knowing the moment he had met her that he would marry her one day and live in the house he built for them. And every time he told that story, Mama's cheeks would pinken, her eyes would sparkle, and they would gaze at eachother lovingly. Zaya smiled to herself. She wanted a lovelike that one day.A lovethat made the pigs, the goats, the cow, the working hard everyday worth it.A prince in dusty clothing to sweep her off her feet and make the rest of her life worth living. She frowned. Right now, her life just seemed almost...meaningless. She loved herMama and Papa and Thomasvery much, but somehow, she had the niggling thought that she was meant for more then justthis everyday life. Maybe her subconsious was trying to tell her, she needed to go out and look for her prince.Her brow furrowed thinking on it. Yes, maybe it was timeto go out searching for her one true love. She sat up andslid out from under the covers, walking on her tiptoes as to not make the wooden floors creak as she made her way to her door. She flinched when it swung open with a loud creeeeak. After a minute of listening to seeif she had awoken anyone, she made her way over to Thomas's room. She slid into hisdark room, hearing his soft snores. "Thomas." Shewhispered. no reply. "Thomas!" she hissed this time. Thomas jerked up in bed. "What in the world Zaya!" He groaned. He was way too tired to woken up by this little brat so late at night.Zaya went over to sitbeside him as he laid there. He noted how the slant of moonlight through his bedroom windowmade her look even more ethereal then normal. He swallowed noisily. "What do you need?" heasked with forced annoyance in his voice. Zaya worked on her thoughts for a second before opening her mouth to tell him about her idea."No." was all he said in response to when she had finished telling him how she felt. "What?! You didn't even think about it!" She whined. "I don't have to think about lyingto our parents about you sneaking off to find your one true love Zaya Holder! Now stop thinking such crazy thoughts and go back to sleep!" He rolled over and pulled the blankets back up to his chin, waiting until he heard her move out of his room and close his door to let out his pent up breathe. He frowned, remembering the exact words she had whisperedto him."I feel as if my life is meant for more then just feeding the pigs everyday, waiting for my prince to come find me. MaybeI was meant to find him." Heremembered back to when his AuntBerthie had stood inside their house, on that raining, cold, miserable night. Holding awailing, red-faced baby in her arms. "Please,she needsa home, don't tell her where she came from." His mother had of course taken in the infant girl and raised her astheir own, his mother's heart was instinctly maternal, and she loved Zaya as her own child, never whispering anything to anyone about the childshowing up that night. From that night onwards, Zaya Holder was theirs.End of story. Hisfather had come up with Zaya's name. Based off of the local folklore about a forest fairie who got lost and came intoa villageone evening, bewitching everyone with her charm, not meaning to, andended up living the rest of her fairie life in thevillage with a mere mortal man who fell in love with her. Thomassighed, sinking down furtherinto his bed, in the morning hewould tell his mother what Zayahad told him. Though she was only being a foolish girl, her feelings could be real in their own way, she could be feeling like she is indeed missing something, like the real family she never knew."Zaya, please talk to me." Thomas pleaded. Zaya glared at him, piercing him to the heart withhow angry she was at him. Early that morning, just as he had planned on doing, he had toldhis mother everything, and she in turn had to sit down withZaya along with their Papa,whobothcalmly repremanded her for wanting to run away in the middle of the night over some boy. They did not tell her about herreal family however, they never had any intentions of doing so. They just wanted her to know thatthey loved her very much, and if she ever did run away they would be so heartbroken they didn't think they would ever recover. Zaya of course had felt guilty over causing her sweet mother such worry, and Thomas had broken her trust by tattling on her. She turned away from him, content on giving him the silent treatment for the rest of her life ifshe could do such a thing. Thomas felt very guilty on betraying her trustbut he reallyhad to tell their parents what shehad said. He didn't want her to do something foolish and get herself hurt. He shook his head at her turning away from him and walked away to begin his day's work. Zaya went the other way to the river to begin carrying buckets of water to the house for laundry. And the day slowly went along like this, Thomas trying to talk to Zaya and her ignoring him,both going along with their work and chores.Later that evening Thomas came home from finishinghis work, and appeared in the doorway of Zaya's room. She glanced over at him and away again.She said nothing. Thomas sighed loudly, raking a hand through his hair. "Zaya, I'm sorry I told on you. I was just worried about you. I love you too much to have you run off and have something happen to you. I would be devestated. I got you this to make it up to you." He crossedthe floor to stand next to her bed andshe felt something hit the bed beside where she was laying. Shetwisted over to see what it was. It was a book. Her curiosity piqued, she picked it up. Thehard cover was worn and dirty. She turned it around and around in her hands, trying to find the title and name of the author. There was none. "What is it, there is no name." She asked, breaking her silence. Thomas smiled at last for the first time today. The sibling's bond was restored. "It is a very old book about astronomy, Mr. Wilson informed mewhenI wentto thelibrary today. It cost me a pretty penny too." he was proud he had found something to get her to forgive him. She flipped through the worn, weatheredpages of the book, her eyes brightening withinterest. She looked up at Thomas and smiled, "thank you,really." She said softly. Thomas's cheeks pinkened and he glanced away nervously. "No bother, I just can't stand you being mad at melike that." He replied. "Anyways, good night. I'll see you in the morning."With that,he was gone. Weekscame and went,summer set in, Zaya spent her days feedingthe pigs, watching the little piglets turn into big,fat,grown up pigs, and one by one they disappeared, turning up on their dinner plates. It depressed Zaya to see that. She felt as if she herself was one of those pigs, being fedand getting fat, only to beslaughtered so meaninglessly, her life wasted. More and more she was becoming fidgety, almost anxious. Shewould lay in bed at night staring at the stars outside her bedroom window, seeing all the possible places she could be out exploring like in the books she read.Her heart ached to be out in theworld, seeing everything and growing, learning more. Something was out there waiting for her she knew. On nights like that where she layin bed tossing and turning from thoughts like this, shewould sigh sadly, reminding herself, she had duties here to attend to, and she needed to get those silly ideas out of her head. And by the time it was her eighteenth birthday,her dreams of wanting to be out in the world hadall but vanished from her mind.