Fort Weyr ~ 2686, Age 13 Turns ~ Deitra's foster mother confronts her about the example she is setting for Chyhi by being in fights and not being as womanly as she can be.

“Look at you! You're covered in dirt. You're completely bruised up, your hair is a mess, your clothes are a wreck! You've ruined the skirts I made you, they're in pieces!”

The shrill voice of her foster mother never changed, never shifted from that shrill high pitch whenever she was angry. She knew she messed up, and she had always tried to be so careful with the clothes the woman made her. She normally changed into pants later and hid the skirts so that they never saw the dirt. Today would have been no different if the boys didn't decide that they needed to plan a sneak attack. Just to keep her skills up, they said. It was all fun and games and she didn't care that her skirt got ruined.

“Why do you do this, Deitra? Did I do something wrong? Is that why you're rebelling against me? And look at your sister! She looks up to you and when you come home like this? What's she to think? She's eleven and impressionable.”

With a sigh, Deitra rolled grey eyes upward and stared blankly at the ceiling in attempts to drown the woman out, yet, it was near impossible. She was certain the whole Weyr could hear.

“It ain't 'bout you, mother. It ain't 'bout you. 'm doin' what I want.” The teen insisted firmly, grey eyes coming down and focusing on the woman who stood before her with her hands on her hips. “Ain't like Chyhi needs ta be what yer wantin' of her, either. She's already doin' what she wants, she's old 'nough ta decide.” She could tell by the twitch of her foster mother's lips that the woman was growing more angry the more that she talked.

“I ain't goin' ta be that girl, y'know. I ain't the type. I like playin' with the boys, I like fightin', I like gettin' dirty. I ain't goin' ta wear skirts no more, ain't goin' ta do my hair pretty how you like it. 'm done.”

She could tell by the look on her foster mother's face that she was going to explode, for the touch of red that had began to touch her cheeks slowly began to fill the rest of her face until she was completely red. And without her foster father around? The woman was free to do how she liked, to explode how she would. And the boys weren't around to hear and to calm the woman down as only her son's could.

“You are a girl, Deitra. You can't be skipping out on your Harper lessons! You can't be running around being so reckless!”

“This is a Weyr! Get used ta it!” The teen interjected loudly, finally reaching her own snapping point with the woman. “I ain't gotta be what yer wantin' with your stupid Holdbred standards! Yer in a Weyr, not a Hold. I ain't goin' ta listen to you. I ain't goin' ta be a girl!”

This statement brought pause to the argument, both staring at one another and entirely determined to win until her foster mother began to laugh. Laugh without reserve as if she had heard the most hilarious thing in her whole life.

Deitra paused, drew back and folded her arms across her chest as she stared blankly at the woman before her. It was like a slap to the face, being laughed at so openly when she had no idea what what considered so funny.

“You're going to be a girl whether you like it or not, Deitra. There's no helping that.”

She had felt her cheeks grow hot, her face was suddenly red as she realized what was so funny as humiliation began to grow for the woman's ridicule. Her ears had begun to burn and tears began to sting in her eyes as she fought to blink them back, not to let her see them but the color alone was enough to draw more laughter from the woman.

“Now, Deitra, please listen…”

She didn't hear the rest of the request, she only heard the ringing in her ears that had grown louder and louder as she reflected on the whole situation. It played through her head, constantly repeating in the matter of seconds before she snapped again.

“I hate you. I ain't wantin' anythin' ta do with you! I know 'm goin' ta be a girl, but I ain't goin' ta be how you want me ta be!”

She didn't listen to the protests, she didn't hear the cries to stop, she simply ran away from the woman and fought back the tears that continued to push at her limits and fought to be free. She found refuge in the deeper parts of the Weyr, hiding within the walls that she knew so well.

It was long after that she began to clear her thoughts, to reflect on what she would do and it was simply decided that she would not fall into something she was not simply because the woman had pushed. Simply because the woman gave them care. No, she would not break. She decided then that she would not make life for her easy, pranks would come non-stop and she certainly would not be alone in her resolve. She had friends.

“I'll never be a girl.”

Word Count: 895