Alice the Beggar-Maid
It happened in summertime some years ago. I saw her nearby my grandfather’s mansion. Where she leaned on was an old wall, which was covered with moss and always slightly wet with yesterday’s early morning dew.
She was lifting her hand towards me, in front of her waist. She wasn’t smiling like flattering, and wasn’t weeping like arousing pity, either. She was just there, with a quiet, calm, but somewhat provoking look.
Because of where she was standing, --- or, maybe because of how her face looked like, --- I wasn’t sure if she was doing that to me for begging something or not. Maybe she even looked like she is the one who is offering something to me.
Anyway, I couldn’t notice that she was young as such, till I saw her breasts not grown yet under the dress which looks like it was just a medley of some torn cloths.
Between the cloths, her shoulders were widely revealed --- even one of her nipples was seen off and on; I was shocked to recognize that my eyes were caught by her enough to observe her this further.
Suddenly, I felt it was a shame to leave her skin dingy with dust and soil, noticing her young breast hidden under her dress being so smooth, bright, and fresh.
“Aren’t you cold, my dear,” I called out to her: “even if it’s summer now, your feet would not be happy to be wet and cold every night, would they?”
I slightly got panicked. I didn’t mean to sound that way --- I realized that I spoke to her in a way as if I was offering her spending a night with me.
While I was wondering what I was trying to intend, she calmly talked back to me: “I won’t mind,” as she said.
“Because they are part of me, and I myself is not bothered for them staying on ground which is pretty nice and cool.”
Then, she stepped her left foot a little backwards, and put it on the low flowerbed border beside her. As I looked in to her face again, her lips seemed to be slightly smiling --- she seemed like she was proud for her equally speaking to a wealthy looking gentleman.
Or, that wasn’t what really happened. Her face still looked emotionless --- emotionless enough to make me feel lost.
Although she was young and poor, she seemed to know who she is --- not like me, seeking for who I really am, beside the wealth of my grandfather and my family.
To me, she appeared to be a matured, independent individual --- so I simply asked her name.
Then she replied as if she was singing: “I am Alice, the beggar-maid, as you can see.”
I fell in love with a girl, who is only 6.
I wonder where she is now.
(Based on: Alice P. Liddell as “The Beggar-Maid.” by Lewis Carroll)