I don't have much in the way of deleted scenes for Magic Under Glass. But there is one complete scene that was taken out because it didn't really further the plot. It's really just a bit of Nimira's character. This scene would have fit in as the last part of chapter 8, which is a dinner conversation between Nimira and Hollin where she first hears of Smollings' visit.
I slipped out into the summer evening, dearly wishing for the companionable solitude of trees and wind. The sky was a washed-out blue, with the western clouds still brushed golden by the setting sun. I hurried along the edge of the garden, hoping no servant would bid me back inside. When I reached the copse of trees, I kept going. The suggestion of a path cut through a field of grasses. I wondered if humans had made it, and if Hollin and Annalie had once roamed here, or if it was merely a passage for rabbits or some other forest creature.
My shoes squished in shallow puddles of fetid muck. Grasses with spiny, feathery heads dragged at the fabric of my skirt. Little green things stuck to the hem. I knew I should have been dismayed to soil Annalie’s clothes; instead I felt an unreasonable satisfaction that I could do as I liked with them.
A few bats fluttered far above my head, and something trilled in the fields, either insect or frog. The cool wind of night swished through the grass. The sky was darkening fast, but I wasn’t afraid.
I slipped into memories as I walked. I recalled playing in the court gardens with the other children. We all took roles from myths and stories. Most girls chose to be the queens and princesses, but I liked to be the wise mountain dragon who doled out tasks for the boys pretending to be warriors. If they got into trouble, I would sigh and pretend to fly from my mountain—a rock half my height—to bail them out of trouble with my dragon powers.
I wondered if it was possible to forget oneself. If I stayed with Hollin, would I still be the same Nim? I hadn’t practiced dancing in days, and I could easily see this stretching into weeks and years. Here I was, on the doorstep of wealth and privilege. It wasn’t my first desire to be merely a rich man’s wife or mistress, but I had known for a long time that I would never follow my mother. I should have been so happy, and yet, for the first time, I imagined myself as the wife of a farmer, back home in Tiansher, with some delusion of nostalgia.
I would gather at the river to talk to the other women in my native tongue.
I would sit and embroider sashes and slippers for upcoming festivals, with delicious anticipation of their debut.
I would grind spices with mortar and pestle, and stir them in the cooking oil; before long I would bring to the table a dish
of such simplicity, yet such exquisite savory that I would never want for the cold pork and boiled vegetables of Lorinar.
I would have a little daughter to teach the songs and dances.
I would have twelve children like Uncle Sancham’s wife, six of them dead by their first year.
I would wake before everyone to tend to the animals, with the thick smell of dung in my nose, and sleep in my eyes.
I would have leathered hands and face from the sun, and breasts that sagged over my sash from all the children, and I wouldn’t bathe often, because peasants hadn’t the time for such things.
I felt such a selfish wretch. Fate had offered me more choices in seventeen years than most women ever had; how dare I wish for more? I looked at Vestenveld from afar, a stone monolith, and knew my choices were narrowing.
I must grow up. I must make that final choice. But I would not lose Nimira. If only I knew just what Nimira really was.