A/N: My first CoM fic (or Tamora Pierce for that matter). Go easy on me.

Disclaimer: Anything you recognize I don't own. Anything you don't recognize…. well, you probably don't wanna know….

"What's a bag like you good for? Nuthin but marryin off to the highest bidder!" Briar's words cut through Sandry's anger like a knife. She stared up at him as he towered above her 5 foot 4 frame, flush red and fists clenched.

They had been fighting a lot lately. Briar, Daja, and Tris were staying at the citadel for the midsummer holiday, celebrating, reminiscing, and supporting Sandry through the countless balls that she had to attend. As her 18th birthday approached, more and more suitors attempted to court her, an unusual strain for her. Sandry wasn't interested in marrying in the least. However, occasionally there would be a man who captured her attention, whether by humor, or kindness, or that they simply didn't smother her.

Briar had been fine at first, all smiles and teasing. But it seemed that every ball he grew more irritated, teasing turning into jibes, Sandry couldn't say two words to him without stomping away in frustration.

This one had started simple enough. Briar was scorning Sandry's latest interest; a noble from Sotat, whose deep blue eyes and wicked humor gained her favor immediately. Now the two mages were hurling insults at eachother from across Sandry's favorite sitting room. They were alone. Daja and Tris had taken off at the start of the argument, muttering darkly amongst themselves about people who couldn't hold civilized conversations with each other.

This fight was different. Sandry had been feeling the strain of her nobility, hating it more with each empty headed suitor intent on using her, and her trip to visit her cousin, empress of Namorn, had not helped matters in the least. Nor had the snide remarks Briar had been so keen to give her lately.

Sandry felt tears welling in her eyes and shoved them back. Straightening up to her fullest height, her chin jerked up and her face bore a withering glare.

"So good to hear the opinion of a street rat," she replied coldly, making sure to spit 'street rat'. Then, she turned and left him to growl after her in fury.

When she turned the corner, she picked up her skirts and ran. Only when she was in her room did she let herself make a sound. Screaming her fury, she kicked her desk, then leapt to her bed and pummeled her pillow.

Cursing in five different languages, Sandry barely noticed when tears leaked down her cheeks. Sobs tore from her, and for a while she lay there crying. It was then that she noticed the threads of her dress quivering. She sent a wavering bit of comfort to them with her magic, calming the fabric. Finally, her rage subsided, leaving only a cold, dull resolve.

She couldn't do it anymore. She could not live with being a noble anymore. Slowly, like a tapestry being woven before her, Sandry formed a plan. She was going to escape.

A/N: There ya go! First chappie's complete. On to numero dos! Remember, we don't except cash, check, or credit, just reviews…