The girls tried to hide their anxiety by thinking about pleasanter things and laughing. The farmer had been called up to the so-called imperial governor who was then in the neighboring village and that could only mean some unpleasantness. The imperialists had brought nothing but sorrow and suffering to Hilonien. All they could do now was to hope that the farmer would return unhurt and that news would not be too gloomy. The farmer's daughter was probably the one who worried most. She was afraid that the enemy had discovered who lay behind the killing of the two soldiers.


The rain pattered on the window. The frost had gone long ago, but it still felt cold in the farmhouse so the girls moved their stools nearer the fire. Luna was just as good at carding wool as the others even through she was only a beginner. Midar was disappointed that he had nothing to do.

"I would also like to card", he said.

"Why am I not allowed to help you"?

"Because you wouldn't be of any help", said the farmers daughter.

"This is a woman's job which boys can't learn".

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