A little while later Jenny heard a knocking behind her, just as she was finishing the cleaning. The woman with the staff was standing in the doorway, not quite leaning on it, but definitely keeping it close at hand.
‘Good afternoon, Jenny,’ the woman walked into the stable, sitting down into the fresh hay covering the ground. ‘Your father told me you were the one who found me in the snow?’
Being unsure what to say, Jenny just nodded, the woman responding by slowly nodding back.
‘So I know who you are, but do you know who I am?’
‘How would I?’ Jenny responded slowly.
‘Quite, but you never know,’ the woman stuck out her hand. ‘Marla Webbley, elementalist formerly with the Seraph, now independent.’ Jenny looked at the hand, then back up at Marla. With a shrug of her shoulders, the woman rested her hands on the staff now lying in her lap.
After a few awkward seconds, Marla placed the staff in the ground and stood to leave.
‘Well, I just wanted to thank you for, eh, finding me. Vanishing in this frozen wasteland would be unfitting for a Webbley from Shaemoor.’ Turning around, the woman began to walk slowly out of the stables shade. Before Marla vanished into the bright sunlight beyond the stable roof, Jenny finally gathered the courage to ask the woman the question that had been stuck in her mind since she had seen the woman lying in old Martel’s infirmary bed.
‘Who were all those names?’
Marla stopped in the entryway and turned slowly back towards her.
‘Names? What names?’ the woman responded with a curious expression on her face.
Jenny took a few hesitant steps towards Marla. ‘When you were staying in old Martel’s guest room, you were mumbling some names in your sleep.’
Marla’s face was utter puzzlement, but her eyes seemed to tell a different story. ‘The only names I can remember are my own and those of my parents,’ the woman gave a little shrug with her shoulders. ‘I’m still tired and sore, so maybe once I have rested some more, I’ll be able to recall more names. The Six knows I served with a fair few back in the Seraph. But I will be staying for at least a few more days, so I promise you I’ll say so if I remember anything. And again, Jenny, thanks.’ Marla left the small stable, moving towards old Martel’s house.