Upon arising, the gypsy noticed a distinct change in the atmospheric light. It was late spring but the air felt and looked like early autumn and was the golden hue of that time of year. This meant only one thing to the silver haired woman, "they" would soon join her at the crossroads. Even her animals stirred with anticipation, as the gypsy prepared for the day.
Taking the wooden bucket and gathering basket down from the peg on the back of the caravan, she headed down the hill on a short jaunt to the spring. The water at the well head bubbled up from the earth and into a pool which was edged by the greens she was enjoying for her meals. The tender greens and roots were the reward of this forest salad bowl and was a delight this close to the major crossroads. Thus the reason she chose this campsite to wait for the beckoning of the universe.
Bending down to draw the water, she caught her reflection. She almost didn't recognize the older visage that met her gaze. In her mind, she was still the raven haired woman in her 40's that had conquered so many situations, had so very many encounters and helped so many to find themselves. All these years had been very kind to her but as with all things, she was aging. In her mind she would always be young and the bounce in her step and the sparkle in her deep brown eyes showed that to all who could or would be brave enough to chance a gaze into them. This tall, lean, strong woman had an aire of confidence and strength that gave a non verbal message to most that she was someone to be respected. Thus her life as a solitary traveller was fairly uneventful with respect to being harrassed by others. Not many were brave enough to stand up to these giant protectors as they are taller than a man and vigilant to a fault.
She filled the bucket, then sat down on the mossy carpet to gather the herbs and greens and her mind turned to the golden light and how it was the foretelling of the coming of the 3 woman who would forever be changed from the gypsy encounter and their shared story. She knew who they would be. She had known for many years now. The only part to the knowing was the when. She was already here at the where.
The three were woman who had crossed her path before. Two were but children at their initial meeting and the last was a young pregnant woman who already had one child.
The first young girl was actually the infant daughter of the healer who had cared for her mother. The second child was a youngster who while playing had run out into the road and the gypsy had rescued her from the Boucher des Enfants carriage. None of these meetings were by chance. At each encounter, the gypsy woman "knew" she would meet these children again. The pregnant woman had just gone into labor. The gypsy was visiting her friend who was midwife in the village. The gypsy woman accompanied her friend to the castle and helped in the delivery of the baby by entertaining and holding the woman's older child and soothing the youngster as his brother was born.
Before her rememberings of their prior meetings was complete, the dampness from the grasses and greens began to remind the gypsy to move back to camp to prepare for the day and for the emanate meeting to come. She picked up her water bucket and the basket now brimming with not only her favorites but also those of her donkeys. As she approached the camp, she was welcomed by the braying of her best friends, her matched pair of Baudet Poitou donkeys who had been a gift from the love of her life. The gentle giants who not only helped her travel the countryside by handily pulling her caravan but also provided the very best protection from whatever might threaten this very gifted and charmed woman.
She had met this lover, who was a member of the royal court when he had called for her to come and cure his butler of his injuries from a fall. He had learned of her after having seen the gypsy cure the crown prince's maidservant of a spider bite the summer before at the tournaments. She had been visiting with the prince's cook at the time teaching her some of the newest culinary arts she had seen and learned from a childhood friend in Paris last season. She was in demand for healing, readings, cooking lessons and much more. All of which took her into circles of society not usually open to those of her station, but then she never believed she was anything but an equal to any and all. Genevieve was the name her mother had called her. Genevieve was not a haughty woman but a woman of confidence of her own being.
The Duke had been so taken by her beauty and talents that he invited her to an afternoon tea in the garden. A tent was set up and all manner of food and drink were provided to thank the gypsy for what she had done for him. But it was what they did for each other in that hot afternoon of passion and learning that made him her devoted admirer forever more. He begged her to stay when her time was up in the region but she knew that it was best to keep their relationship longingly brief. And whenever she was near the Duke's estates or he sent word where they might meet, she did. It was a perfect love for both. He never married, she never settled and they devoured each others love when they were together.
She smiled as she realized how blessed she was to live this gift called life and set about the chores of the day.