"If you're travelling with the ghost of an automaton, what do you believe in?"

A glass bottle, adorned with yellow string and a handmade sticker of the sun sits in the windowsill. You're not sure how it's meant to capture any sun in a storm like this. A glance to the right of this brings your attention to the large cabinet, filled with canisters of tea and dried flowers and herbs. The syrups are in the fridge, she says, and there are canned goods in the pantry. She also suggests she could let you go home with some canned cinnamon peaches, which sound like a real treat.

Also on the cabinet is a small basket, shallow, lace spilling out from the random trinkets inside. The tag tied to the handle reads "Guest Gifts for Hawthorne". You pat your pockets, but don't have anything to give right now.

"Does Hawthorne require offerings?"

"No," she snorts, pulling thread through an embroidery project. "though, people giving him gifts-- a spirit they don't even know-- fills our hearts with joy. That said, he does really enjoy sun water."

You nod. There's no water vessel. His real shrine must be set up elsewhere. When asked about it, she says:

"I never really thought of it as a shrine or altar, actually... Would you believe there are people out there with large collections of items with his model's face on them? As well as small charms they wear on their bags and keys? I've seen people with rooms dedicated to him." she sighs, pausing before making her next stitch. "But," a small smile makes its way to the corner of her lips again. "I'm happy he's so well loved. Well, his likeness, anyway." she lost track of the conversation and tries to think back on your original question.

"Right! I've got a spot of things I've given him, but that's personal. -- He wants me to let you know that I actually buy too many things for him (since he can't actually use them, being a spirit and all), but I disagree." She shakes her head.

"You said people are a fan of his likeness? Is he not the real one?" you ask.

"Do you ask twins which one is the real one?" she chuckles. "It's much different to automatons, too... He was as 'real' as any other automaton of that model is. I hope I'm making sense, you know. These things are awfully hard to put into words."

You notice, in the cabinets, small blue hearts on some of the jars and foods. When asked, she says those are Hawthorne's favorites.

"Do you give him whole meals, then?" You ask.

"He'd get very worried about wasting food. We share the experience of eating and tasting the food." she explains. "We do a lot of experience sharing, actually." her voice is warm and she has her hand to her chest. She doesn't elaborate on the how, because now her stomach growls. "About those peaches, I could warm them up and add a side of ice cream!"