The grace we need to find will not be found by the graceful only.

The girl was not ugly, but she didn’t have looks that turned heads or made people stop and stare. She was the plain sort of girl that easily and often faded into the background. It seemed that the only time people did stop and look at her was when she had made some mistake or another.

Awkward was the kindest thing people called her. Less kindly people called her clumsy. There were other words that she’d heard all her life from people who didn’t know how to be kind at all. She tried to move the way she’d seen other girls her age move. They seemed to float over the ground, their feet hardly touching it. Their feet made a soft pattering, if that. They certainly didn’t trip over their own feet or the hem of their pants. They never seemed to fall down.

However hard she tried to emulate their movements, she failed. Perhaps that was the problem. Perhaps she tried to hard. Whatever it was, she’d given up trying to move the way they did. She’d given up trying to attract the attention of those around her with her looks. Looks faded. There were far more important things in life.

So, she wasn’t beautiful and she wasn’t nimble. What did that leave her? To her way of thinking, it left the less physical things: her mind and her talents.

After years of being beneath the notice of most people, she felt eyes on her as she crocheted a lacy shawl. A faint smile touched her lips and she risked a glance away from her work. Her eyes met soft, dark gray eyes.

As she stopped her work to look at the young man directly, he gave her a faint smile. “Hey,” he said. He nodded at the project in her lap and said, “That’s pretty. How do you… sew like that?”

“It’s crochet,” she said, tucking a lock of hair behind one ear. “My mother taught me.” As she went back to her work, he shifted so that he was sitting beside her, watching her work. Soon, he was speaking softly to her – asking her questions.

She started off simply answering his questions. Before long, though, she had set aside her needlework and was talking with him. It was nice and easy, as if they’d known each other all their lives. It was friendship and, for now, it was enough.

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