As a child, she’d tried to steal the color from the grass and the sky for her dress. That was before she had understood. Before she understood that her family couldn’t afford the bright colors the other children wore. Those children had patched and multicolor garments that glowed all the hues of the rainbow. Her dress was black. When she was 10, as a special treat, they had gotten the color for the ribbons she liked to wear in her hair, a speck of red to fill just one ribbon. She had immediately tied it into place, laughing and dancing around as this new splash of color played in her hair. But then the harvest had been poor and the only way to ensure the family could eat the winter through was to sell that scrap of color to another.


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