“What are these?“ Maxon asked, brushing across the tips of my fingers as we walked.
"Calluses. They’re from pressing down on violin strings four hours a day.”
“I’ve never noticed them before.”
“Do they bother you?” I was the lowest caste of the six girls left, and I doubted any of them had hands like mine.
Maxon stopped moving and lifted my fingers to his lips, kissing the tiny, worn tips.
“On the contrary. I find them rather beautiful.” I felt myself blush. “I’ve seen the world – admittedly mostly through bulletproof glass or from the tower of some ancient castle – but I’ve seen it. And I have access to the answers of a thousand questions at my disposal. But this small hand here?” He looked deeply into my eyes. “This hand makes sounds incomparable to anything I’ve ever heard. Sometimes I think I only dreamed that I heard you play the violin, it was so beautiful. These calluses are proof that it was real.”