A/N: The first installment of a drabble series. Please read and review!

Disclaimer: I'm not Tamora Pierce, I'm just raising Cain in the Tortallverse.

Dedication: I don't often do these any more, but this goes to sheikgoddess, who made me rethink No Faith Left For Legends into this series.

Prompt 55 Pet Names

"Marnie, Marnie! The storms are coming!"

I was eighteen then. My name wasn't really Marnie, but the secret of what it had been shortened from was lost. I lived with Da, headman of the village, and my younger brothers and sisters, caring for them because our mother was dead. It had been a peaceful enough existence, my doing all the work and watching my father court the pretty women, and then the bandits came, with their cursed mage.

Storms meant attacks. As I ran around bolting shutters and doors, I hoped that the help Da had sent for would come soon.

Prompt 70 Forbidden

I hated not being allowed to ride. Once, when I was much younger, a Rider group came to town to rid us of some spidrens, and a beautiful woman with black hair who commanded them saw me staring at the lovely horses, and she swung me up before her and gave me a ride. Probably only at a canter, but it was just like flying and I spread my arms out like wings, and she laughed at my delight.

My father liked to boast then that his Marnie got a ride from the Queen, but he didn't let me ride.

Prompt 71 Love and Victory

They were telling stories in the tavern that night. I found that, while riding was not for the likes of me, serving and cooking in a tavern to earn extra coin was suitable. At least I could spend the money as I wish. I liked that.

I also heard all the rumours, and the stories that the village healer told beside the fire when it was late and everyone slightly drunk but me. They spoke first of the company of fighters, and then they went straight into tales of love and victory and happy ever after.

Fire-lit nonsense, every word.