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Old Mother, Young Mother and Middle Mother: Cehrazad doesn’t know what they’d do if her father married again. Add another wing?

Middle Mother finds Cehrazad on her sixteenth birthday. “Oh, finally,” she says, “is your underface washed? You’re due for a fitting in the city.”

“It’s always washed,” says Cehrazad. “A mask fitting? Is it a present?”

“No,” says Middle Mother. “Well, yes, I suppose. Something new for the ball.”

Cehrazad tries to remember. “I’m going to a ball?”

“Of course!”


“To see if the King will marry you,” says Middle Mother, and her voice is small, like a child’s.