A foreigner in the Isles, returning. They leave her to herself, in the place where there was plague, except the young poet. She is happy in her solitude but he seeks her out. There is a value to politeness and leaving well enough alone. SY
She came back to the Isles in the spring mist. She was left on a pebble beach by a ship from the south, which sailed off without even stopping to resupply. A nearby fishing village took her in for a week, after which she went quietly away and the next anyone heard was that she had made a home in what remained of a hamlet abandoned a hundred years ago or more. And there had been plague there, so no one cared to visit, although she did come back to barter southern coins for food.
Eventually people stopped caring. Foreigners were all mad anyway. Who knew why any of them did anything?
The stream was the same, clear water spilling foam-flecked between brown stepping stones. There were foxgloves still, and green hollows below undercut banks, and here and there the bronze of dead leaves shed by the beech trees coming into their spring growth. Mist crept like a white ghost over the grass.