Back in the Jasper Cove days, I always enjoyed the times that Wren would come wandering around the castle grounds on her patrol and the conversations we used to have. I think we got off to a good start when I bought into the whole business of her going on patrol and calling her Patrolman Wren. And now that she is here in Mysthaven, I continue to appreciate and enjoy her company. I am still concerned about whatever it was that happened to her that caused her to leave her summer camp, but I am sure she will tell me when she is ready.
I was in my office, elbow deep in constructing an outline for the Accords between us and Faerie when she came in, partly just for a chat, and partly because she was looking for Wicket, her pet rat. I told her she was welcome to come in as I needed a break from writing the Accords, and explained what those were. She came in and slouched across the room, so I reproved her mildly, asking what happened to the nice crisp march she used to have.
She told me that the other kids, back in her previous home, used to laugh at her for marching, so she had stopped. I understood that perfectly, and suspected that she had experienced other difficulties fitting in, being the tomboy that she was. I told her that she should not take any notice of that. I said that she should always be herself. I recalled my own experiences when I was her age and younger. I told her about being bullied for having red hair, to the extent that I wanted to cut it all off. I told her how my mother had taught me how to stand up to bullies and be proud of my hair. I said that maybe I had become a little too proud, for I had refused to cut it from then on, save for when it got too long to handle comfortably.
She thought that it would be strange seeing me with short hair, or having hair of a different colour. She understood what I said about dealing with bullies, but said it was hard. I had to agree. I knew form my own experiences just how hard it was. I told her about the other insults – for being well-read, for not liking physical sports much and such like. I even told her, which I have not told many people, about the times they would tell me I looked like a girl. That one, I said, did not work, because of how immensely fond and proud of my mother I had been, and she was a girl. I told her about some of the ways Mother had taught me to deal with being bullied, and how to laugh off insults and such like. Mostly, how she had taught me to be proud of who I was, and how I should always be myself.
I was sure, I said, that she had to deal with the same sorts of things, especially for her preference for dressing like, and acting like a boy rather than being a girly-girl. She admitted this was the case. Unfortunately, I did not get to talk about it further, as we were interrupted by Caleb who had some village matters that needed dealing with. I promised we would talk some more soon, but had to get on with work. Such are the joys of my position.