The XIIIth child. The XIIIth night of the month. Cursed, for life.

Alexandriexis, she was named. “As if XIII letters could do any more harm,” her mother said bitterly.

Black cats followed her everywhere and she cared for them sweetly, nourishing them and protecting them as well as she could.

The other children called her names and insulted her endlessly, for they had never taken the time to get to know her.

On her XIIIth birthday, her parents had given up. They gave her a loaf of bread and sent her on her way, with her XIII black cats.

“Witch!” they called after her. “Satan’s child!”

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