The figure moved forward. Her first step was like the crack of a twig in the dark of a winter forest, where the shadows hold more terrors than a man can remember. Her second step was the crisp compression of fresh snow, unsullied by footprints in the silence of a morning walk. Her third was the shuffle of soft leather on quarry tiles but her fourth... Her fourth was the quiet of bare feet.
Lucy smiled at the woman, accepting the rough homespun tunic and the musty smell of old books that clothed her better than any silks. She held out her arm to be picked up. “I'm Lucy.”