A bit of backstory
Jheri was a skilled mercenary of indeterminate years, known to the city as the person you hired when you wanted something underhanded done and were willing to fork over a lot of coin. A lithe silver dragonborn, she was attractive and mysterious, and would have surely had her pick of friends and lovers, despite her slightly criminal job description. But she seemed to keep mostly to herself. Other than a few words exchanged here and there with the shopkeeps whose stalls she frequented, she was usually alone. Until one day she appeared to buy bread in the market with a fragile-looking human child, who hid in her shadow and stared at the world with wary brown eyes.
The child was odd, everyone said. She had scars on her face. She growled when touched, flinched whenever someone smiled at her, and met people’s eyes with such intensity and ferocity that it made them nervous. She rarely spoke, and when she did it was haltingly, with an odd accent no one recognised. People who had overheard Jheri speak to her whispered that it wasn’t in the city’s tongue, and that the child had responded in snarls and hisses. Rumors swirled around her arrival in the city. She came from a village, somebody had heard, one of the many raided by demons. Jheri had gone to stop the raid. Some said she’d found the child alone, curled in the ashes of the burned huts, eyes glowing.
She was a witch, they speculated. Blood full of dark magic so she couldn’t be killed. Some swore otherwise, that Jheri was harboring the very demon who had razed the village. When these stories came too close to Jheri’s ears, she was quick to defend and dissuade. Nobody quite believed her. Mercenaries were sketchy types, easy liars. But nevertheless, they tried to keep their opinions closer to their chests, out of fear of Jheri’s sword.
The child didn’t seem to notice the way people looked at her, and if she did, she didn't care. She followed Jheri about her business like a breathing shadow, tense and quiet. Nobody ever saw her smile.
She crouches uncomfortably at the edge of the chair, ready to flee at any sign of danger. Peeks out at Jheri from behind strands of her hair.
Jheri pushes a clay cup across the table towards her. Cautiously, Rasa wraps her hands around it. Warm. Filled with white liquid, foamy on the top. She gives it a tentative sniff.
“Milk,” Jheri says. Rasa blinks, she doesn’t know what that is. “Drink it. It’ll help you get stronger.”
Obediently, Rasa sips at the liquid. Warm, sweet and sharp on her tongue. It makes her feel warmer. She remembers now, she has had it before, it brings back vague feelings of being very small, being carried, gazing up at huge furry animals.
She looks quickly up at Jheri, then back at the milk. Drinks it in quick gulping sips.