Ramona and Rimple

Once upon a time, while Ramona Otoe was walking through the forest, she ran into the Prefect’s little boy, Rimple. The weather was sunny and warm and Ramona had had quite a lot of fun already that day, so she stopped to ask the boy to play tag with her.

“I sha’n’t play wif you,” he told her. “You’re only a girl, and a commoner too.” Well, Ramona did not like to be addressed in such a way. So she crossly informed him that boys and girls could too play together, so long as they wanted to. “And,” she added, “My Daddy says I’m very special.”

mbse1 Ramona Accent

“It doesn’t matter what your daddy say,” insisted Rimple, sticking out his chin at her. My Daddy’s Prefect and he can make your daddy say ‘spit.'” “Can not.” drawled Ramona, but her eyes were on the ground because she didn’t want to show him how angry she was getting.

“He can too! My Daddy says that Prefect can do anything, ‘cos he’s the Law.” Rimple took courage from the sound of his own voice and he started to speak louder. Ramona thought for a moment how silly he must sound, but all she could feel was how she wanted to prove him wrong.

“And my people have been on this land for two hundred years,” he said finally. “Well, so’ve mine!” Ramona rightfully defended.

“That’s different,” Rimple laughed. “We own the land. You just work on it.”

“Well— Well, my Daddy says that you’re not rich.” “‘Course we are.” “No, you’re not,” Ramona felt her temper slipping away. “Not really. My Daddy says the really rich people only let you think you’re rich so’s you’ll keep people like us in line. My Daddy says they let you govern so’s they can rule. My Daddy says that you’re no better than me, even if you are a boy.”

Rimple’s eyebrows arched very big and he turned very red. “I shall have your daddy flogged!” He shouted, pointing his finger at her. “You won’t,” she threatened. But the boy was already running. “See if I do,” he called over his shoulder. “You see if I do.”

And the next day some men came and hung Ramona’s daddy from a tree.