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by afrai

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Susan had taken the situation because it was a long way away from anywhere she'd lived before, which was the best recommendation it could have.

Esme was one of those children who give the impression of having been born at a thousand years old, but Susan knew how to handle children like that. She'd been one herself.

It was a pleasant job. Peaceful. She'd caught up on her reading. She'd thought things would be normal from now on.

She hadn't expected to meet a girl with beautiful hair and a wonderful personality.

Susan had only ever had a fine character.

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Agnes met her when she was working. Agnes had never seen Esme so tractable.

"You're good with children," Agnes said. Perdita muttered, She's like you.

"What?" said Agnes.

She's got somebody else inside her, said Perdita. Only she hasn't got fat and niceness to cover it up, so she knots her hair in a bun instead and she works and she's polite. Ugh.

"It knots itself, actually," said Susan. And that was it.

It took some time before Perdita could speak civilly to Susan, but she got used to Susan in the end.

It wasn't like she had a choice.

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