She comes out of the water with heavy skirts and long hair.
The dress she wears is wool and leather and it drapes annoyingly from her waist. Long white locks fall out of a braid she doesn't remember weaving.
These are things she hates as she makes her way to the town she saw from the sky. She walks there because it's hard to be in the air even though it's fun. Her clothes weigh her down and her hair tangles in branches that pull and grab like hands.
When she gets there no one sees her.
But she sees them.
And she watches.
She watches the women cook and clean and sew and sometimes help the men. Their mundane chores bore her but she studies them like a child discovering that not everyone's body is the same.
The woman have marks on their hands, burns from cooking and little scars given by needle mishaps and slips.
Her hands have these small imperfections and she hates them, an unreasonable feeling of disgust stirs in her gut and she kind of feels like crying, like screaming at the world for wrongs she doesn't really understand. She doesn't scream because no one would hear her anyway.
The men have calluses and scars from knives and fish lines and rope.
It surprises her that she has those too, just a few of them but it's a pleasant warmth that spreads in the bottom of her belly and something that feels right, that makes her giddy and light. So she stops watching the curious creatures that flutter around in skirts like her, with long hair like her's, and she begins studying the men.
They work hard work and laugh deep, brash laughs and curse loudly when their wives don't look.
They hold shepherd's hooks and fishing poles and carry shovels and axes.
It takes her three heart beats to realize she wants that.
She doesn't know where to begin.
But she tries, she follows them, she curses, and steals sips of whisky, and when someone makes a rude remark she laughs with as deep a voice as she can.
Then she realizes she could do more.
One night she slips into a house and finds the woman of said home's sewing basket. She grabs it.
The skirt she hates is ripped with scissors she 'borrowed' and she sews the pieces together with more stolen tools. A part of her is disgusted to be sewing, to know where and how to cut, but she does it and she pulls on pants and she's happy. For a moment she's happy.
She returns the basket but keeps the scissors.
The men keep their hair shorter, or at least the youth do.
She watches from a window as a mother brushes a hand through her sons hair and then cuts. Her eyes observe with almost perverse fascination as lock after lock falls to the floor. The weight of her stolen scissors hang heavily in the pocket of her pants. Hands runs through white hair.
She could do that.
Flying is easier with her legs free so she lets the wind carry her.
Her hair is the only thing that protests, whipping about wildly. It frustrates her. The wind drops her gently on her lake so she takes out the scissors and cuts.
She snips and cuts until it's to her shoulders then she pauses and looks down. White hair is by her feet but she sees something else.
She sees her silhouette in the light of the moon.
Carefully she starts to snip away until its to her ear.
When she stops she feels strange. The moon is bright and she sees herself, pants tight on her slim legs her cloak draped around her body, hiding her small chest. Her shirt does the same.
The moon creates a circle of light and she sees her face with a strange clarity that's not a normal reflection for ice. Her face is slender but angular and her hair is short.
She looks like a boy.
The moon fades and she feels something break and fix inside her.
She cries and hands pull at hair that's not there.
She'll miss it, she realizes. She loved her hair but it's not her.
It's not his.
Looking up the moon speaks.
It's not a special name, exactly two beats long and it sounds like snow, falling and packed and crunched beneath boots, but it's his and in the night he wails out for the loss of her hair and beats against the chest that's not quite right. Jack Frost isn't her name but it's his.