Carefully calculated steps, her arms on either side of her, balancing herself on the roof. Her daemon, fluttering as a butterfly around her ear. The breeze was cool on her face which had been burnt by the summer sun as she had spent the day with the Gyptians playing gobblers. A tumble of blonde curls framed her strong face, set in determination. She aimed carefully at Billy Costa in the distance and with a mighty throw she hit him directly at the back of his head with an apple. Lyra Belacqua hooted with laughter and lowered herself onto the window ledge and climbed through before he could retaliate.

She walked silently next to her uncle. He looked down at her and saw her eyes light up with unwavering curiosity, you could literally sense her lively energy radiating off her. But he refused to change his mind. He had to keep her safe, away from the North and away from Dust. And most importantly away from Marisa. "But why can't- ," Lyra started but Lord Asriel interrupted her and said "There are something's you are incapable of understanding, so just leave it at that."

Lyra sat in the warm bath while Mrs Coulter washed her hair, kneading her hair with her hands. Mrs Coulter had soft fingers and she was careful not to let the hair snag on them. She had all these fancy bath bombs that would create a froth and make the water any colour you wanted. Today it was lavender and the room smelt like lavender too. Lyra wasn't used to these womanly things but she was curious about them all the same. Mrs Coulter was a very feminine person and only owned pretty things and glamorous clothes. She got out of the bath and towelled herself off and dressed in some clothes Mrs Coulter had bought her. They both sat in front of the mirror and Mrs Coulter dried Lyra's hair and styled it. "Now don't you look pretty," Mrs Coulter said and they both looked in the mirror. And what Lyra saw disturbed her and without thinking Lyra said "I kind of look like you, I do look like you," and she pouted her lips in a very Mrs Coulter like face and giggled. Mrs Coulter's face froze but she got up, the golden monkey jumping to her shoulder. "Go grab your coat we are leaving to have breakfast," Mrs Coulter said distantly.

She held the baby in her arms, her blue eyes taking in her environment. "I will name her Lyra," Mrs Coulter whispered and the baby looked into her eyes and for a moment she felt a connection but then it was gone.

"Lyra dear, have you washed?" Mrs Coulter said inspecting her hands. "Yes," Lyra said, Pan in mouse form hiding in her jacket, away from the golden monkeys stare. "Your hands are filthy don't lie to me again, now wash them!" Mrs Coulter demanded. Lyra had been at Mrs Coulters for quite awhile and so far she wasn't even close to getting to the North, and she desperately wanted to see her uncle. Lyra washed her hands vigorously, scared that if there was one dirt stain on her hand Mrs Coulter would raise a hand to her. "Good," Mrs Coulter said and they both sat to eat dinner. Mrs Coulter stared at Lyra a long time then said casually "Tell me about your parents," Lyra stopped and looked at Mrs Coulter. She felt slightly uncomfortable with the question but decided to tell her a lie rather than how they really died. "Well my parents were spies and this one mission the both got shot and when they were dying they declared their undying love for one another," Lyra said convincingly. Mrs Coulter stifled a laugh and then said "Lyra, lying is not tolerated in this house." Lyra stared at Mrs Coulter evilly. "How'd she know, maybe she's a spy…," Lyra said quietly. "Pardon? Lyra you need to learn some manners, your uncle, what's his name? Oh yes Lord Asriel Belacqua, he needs some parenting tips because he obviously didn't raise you properly, did he teach you to lie?" Mrs Coulter said bitterly. "Don't talk about my uncle, you don't even know him!" Lyra shouted furiously. Mrs Coulter restrained herself from screaming out the truth you stupid child I know who he is, he fathered my child and that child is you! "I have meet your uncle a few times actually and Lyra please calm down your temper is embarrassing me," Mrs Coulter said. "But there's no one here so how can I be embarrassing you!" Lyra shouted unable to control her anger. Mrs Coulter rose from her seat and slapped Lyra straight across the face "Shut up! You are rude and inconsiderate, your parents probably killed themselves to get away from you!" Mrs Coulter shouted. Mrs Coulter felt one of her cheeks and found it to be hot with anger. She sat back down and gulped down her water. Lyra sat there stunned. This fight started just because she lied. Lie. Lie. Lie was all Lyra did.

"I sometimes wish I had parents," Lyra said stroking Pan. A tear rolled down her cheek and then another. "I wonder what they were like, uncle never talks about them," Lyra whispered and hopped into her bed. "It must have been horrible to die in a airship accident," Lyra said shuddering. "Please don't say that, I hate the thought of death," Pan said. Mrs Coulter's eyes widened as she stood by the door. That's what he told her? He's not very creative is he. The golden monkey looked up at Mrs Coulter and they both walked into the room. "So I see you're ready for bed," she said smiling as if their argument at dinner hadn't happened. Lyra didn't say anything, just stared, there was so much anger in her she thought she might explode. Mrs Coulter pulled her daughter to her chest holding her tightly, crying so softly not even Lyra could hear. "I do know that your mother loved you very much," Mrs Coulter whispered softly.