"Hello," said Kasidy. She gave another biscuit to her daughter, seated snugly in the baby stroller beside her cafe table, and smiled at the boy. Rachel grabbed at the biscuit and began gummily chewing on it.
The little boy, about two, tucked his ball under his arm and looked out at her from large dark eyes. "Hi," he whispered back.
He looked too young to be playing in the street, but this was a quiet section of the village, down at the end of a side street leading to the main market. Kasidy liked to come here to eat for just that reason. There were fewer people to throng her and the Emissary's child. She hadn't yet been inside the store next to the cafe, where brightly-coloured streamers of fabrics from all over the quadrant hung in the windows. Kasidy looked around for a parent and didn't see one.
"Does your mommy know you're out here?" she asked. He shook his head. "Maybe you should go back and see her."
He shook his head again. "Pretty baby," he said, pointing at Rachel.
"Thanks." Kasidy was charmed. He really was a cute kid.
"My mommy says--"
"Nalas! Nalas, where are you?" A worried young woman burst out of the fabric store. "Oh, there you are. What are you do--" She saw Kasidy and pulled up short. "Oh, I'm so sorry, Mrs. Emissary! I didn't mean for him to bother you! I'm sorry!" She quickly snatched the little boy from the walk.
"It's okay," said Kasidy. "I think he came out looking for his ball."
The woman still looked flustered. "He should be inside. I told him to stay inside--" She turned quickly back towards the store.
"He was really no trouble," Kasidy started to say, when the light caught the little Bajoran boy's face. Surprised, she stared for just a moment, long enough for the mother to whisk the child back inside and close the door.
Little Nalas was half Cardassian.