Thulo writes back
Because of this letter, though not in reply to it because it wasn’t addressed to him in the first place. Proof that one shouldn’t read other people’s letters, I suppose.
Dearest flower of Kushesh,
I imagine that soon you will be blushing like a wild rose. Much like I was, just after I offered to read aloud this letter you sent to your sister. She did not immediately realize it was about me, but now that they know. There is no end to the teasing I am offered because of this and the whole village knows about it. But do not worry you look so cute when you do.
Before we parted you were so clear you could not come with me. Have you changed your mind then? Will you change it again? I fear that in the end it does not matter much. If I had taken you with me you know what Khopai would do. He could cut the pretty green stem from my wild rose and I could not live with that thought. Besides, someday I would like to have some children and he would sever that option as well.
So perhaps after years have passed and I made my grand fortune as a merchant or a priest I will return to Kushesh a free-er man. For us to ever be we both have shackles to burst.
But to be more serious. Right now I am on a journey that I fear will take me many dangerous places. Ashas will be one of them I think. And there is a good chance that I will not return. My life, like my name is a great gamble. So you will likely live longer than me, so I may never return to Kushesh, though I will try to return if I can. Meanwhile you have to live and grow and always direct yourself towards the sunlight so you will be strong enough to find a place to be happy. If I make it back alive and the gods are willing I will find you again and if not you should not wait for me.