“Awww, Aethos’ wilted purpled balls, Mom? A dress?!” I cried out in utter dismay as I unwrapped my gift.
My mother Caelynn blanched.
“Watch your tongue, young lady, or I’ll have your father tan your rear!” Mom blurted, glancing around with a horrified look to make sure no one else had heard me.
“Tan my rear? I’m not fourteen anymore, in case you haven’t noticed!” I scoffed.
She huffed better than any of the other prim little delicate butterflies at the acceptance party.
“So I guess Dad had a meeting… again,” I muttered just loudly enough for Mom to hear, while simultaneously trying to conceal my disappointment that once again Caelynn was the sole parent attending some event that was important to me.
“Shush now dear,” Mom said softly, “You know he has very important business to attend to. But I’m here. And I even took the liberty of writing an introductory letter to the Fitzsimmons for you, in case you decide against this… travesty. That Tomas of theirs is certainly a handsome fellow and available for marriage, they are quite well-to-do, and I hear very good things about his, ahem, bedside manner-“
“Mom! Marriage, really? Don’t you think if that’s what I wanted I could have found a man by myself by now? I’ve been accepted into Delver School, I want to explore, and discover things! That’s why I’ve worked my ass off for the past three years!”
I shoved the dress back into its box roughly and slammed it on the table. Eyes were already turning towards us with the rise in my tone. I didn’t care. I stood up.
“I’ve got places to go and things to see before I spend a moment in any man’s kitchen, sewing room, or bed-“ I started again as I smoothed my shirt down, but she interrupted with a sly smile.
“That isn’t what I’ve heard. At least, not about the latter part,” she said as she glanced down to her folded hands, “You know, at the rate you’re going, our family name will be colored.”
“Well, at least it will have some color besides lily white!” I exploded, and walked away briskly toward my room, leaving my gift to sit on the table and my mother to sit alone at the gathering.
In my room, I paced angrily for a few minutes before I started unpacking everything I owned from my packs, sacks, and pouches.
At least I’ll be away from her for a while, I thought grimly.