Savariana VII

Brutilla ignored me and put it around her own neck. She said she needed it more than I did because I was the youngest and unimportant whereas she was almost twelve and the oldest and therefore had to lead the whole procession and because she had more petals to toss than the rest of us.

When I started to cry she said I mustn't make my face blotchy or I would insult the goddess Flora and then she wouldn't give us a good crop which was the whole point of the procession.

Brutilla said if the town starved it would be all my fault. And then I heard the buzzy flutes and jangly tambourines and the bright trumpets blow so I bravely swallowed my tears and put on a princess smile as Mama and Tata say I have to do even when I am sad or frightened.