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 Errand  A Letter of Appreciation  Closed 

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March 8th. International Woman's Day. Perhaps surprisingly, this was one of those slightly obscure national days with which Evelynn was actually quite familiar. Her family was a matriarchal one, after all. She had no brothers, no father, no grandfathers… There were a couple male figures — an uncle and a couple cousins — in her extended family, but they had hardly seen them even when they still lived in Canada. And ever since emigrating, it had always just been her and her mother. Even still, every woman in her family was a well-respected woman. Educated. Refined. Talented in at least one form of fine art, but often several. Well-read. Evelynn came from a long line of independent, intellectual feminine figures.

It was no wonder, then, that she had received an education on the historical progression of societal opinion with regard to women's roles. Not that she could really escape it even if she tried. The internet was crawling with social justice warriors ready to emasculate anyone who suggested that women fill the role as a stay at home wife, or in any way demonstrate subservience or deference to their male counterparts. Of course, as Evelynn's mother had taken care to enforce, these were taking the feminist movement in too extreme a direction and actually depriving women of their power to choose and carve their own path. Girls were just as good as boys. No better, no worse. Each as capable of achieving their goals and desires provided they have the talent and drive to do so.

That was what she believed.

So, in a sense, she didn't really understand the need to emphasize it. In her life, it was a constant. Something that was unquestionable and unshaking. Her mother was the anchor of Evelynn's world. She's raised her, given her an education, put food on the table, maintained a roof over her head, and given her life experiences through travel and extracurriculars. And all while single. In her household, in her family, there were no gender stereotypes, no bias. All responsibilities of house and home were carried out by her and her mother. Calking molding, fixing plumbing, carrying out the trash, paying bills, working, pumping gas, changing oil, running dungeon and dragons campaigns for the two of them… her mom did all of it, and all without batting an eye.

One thing she could absolutely get on board with, however, was the encouragement to reach out and tell her mom how great she was. Just for being her. For being everything Evelynn aspired to be. Maybe it would be mushy… And maybe it would be more than a little uncomfortable and cheesy to write… but she still hadn't replied to the last letter. It was past time. So, feet finding their way to a quiet corner of the study room, Evelynn sat down to pen a long-overdue letter.
Mom,

I'm sorry. I know I should have written to you ages ago. I got the parcel you sent. The locket is really pretty. It feels strange to wear it, though. It's heavier than it looks, but it's nice to be able to see you whenever I want to. And Cassie too. I was thinking of trying to get it bewitched so that it will move like the paintings I told you about, but I don't know… That might actually make it seem a little too realistic. I really miss you. I guess I got used to always being able to spend my birthday with you, even if it was just a quick weekend back home for a few days. I wish you could be here now. I think you'd I'm looking forward to the summer when I can come home.

So today's International Woman's Day. I know you hate today, but my school is doing this big event for it. There are a bunch of us gathered in the Great Hall to do… whatever it is that they're doing. Probably making posters or studying up on model women in history or something. We've been instructed to do something to show our support of women's equality and to celebrate women empowerment. I thought about going there to see what the rest were going to get up to to tackle the project, but you're the only woman I really care to talk about right now.

I don't really come out and say it, but I really admire you. I only know a little bit about what you've been through, but I know you've gone through a lot to get where you are. You've always been there for me. Even when you're down, you try to make me smile, or make sure that I'm cared for. I mean, I know we sort of argued when I first came to Hogwarts, but I know you were trying to look out for me then as well, and that you were worried for me in a new world on my own.

But it's not that different from you. You're on your own as well, and you always seem to manage. Even when you struggle, you somehow manage to keep walking and putting one foot in front of the other. I don't know how you do it sometimes. You're patient, and kind, and smart… I mean you still beat me at chess every time and it's really annoying. And so creative! That last dungeon you did over Christmas was the best one yet, I think. The riddles were really clever, and I didn't expect that ending at all. Honestly, I still think you should open up that AirBnB and do the weekend dungeons.

And… you're fierce. I don't think I really realized just how brave you were. There's a hospital wing here at school, and I've seen some of the things that the nurses here have to deal with. I know you don't see kids puking up slugs, or noses that have gotten so big that they're toppling over with the weight… but you've dealt with the rest of it. The breaks and the illness and the pain and trauma. I know you've told me your stories, but I get the feeling that those aren't really the real stories. And you've been a nurse for longer than I've been alive… It's amazing. You have to care to be a good nurse (and I know you are because the old lady at the cornerstore said so, and she's always right), which means it must hurt every time, but you keep doing it, knowing that you're going to see people suffering every day. I don't think our community knows how lucky they are to have you working there, but I know they appreciate you. I appreciate you.

And I hate to admit it, but you were right about a lot of things. Some of those sayings you've carved into my brain have actually come in handy a time or two. I'm sorry for rolling my eyes every time. Anyway, I guess I'm trying to say thank you. Thank you for being a good and loving mother. I didn't know until recently just how lucky I am to have you in my life. You're my hero.

I love you,
xoxo
Eevee

p.s. please give Cassie a hug for me
p.p.s and make sure you're not over-feeding her or giving her too many carrots. I don't want her getting fat
p.p.p.s please give Cassie a carrot for me
Upon its completion, Evelynn touched the tip of her quill to the edge of the inkwell to drain the residual pigment, and rested it down. As she scanned the letter, she couldn't help but feel that it still felt… empty… somehow. She'd spoken from the heart and from the top of her head, everything was true. But it didn't seem to carry enough of an impact. She'd never really been good with words. Not ones of a positive emotional nature, anyway. But this still felt weak, even by her own standards. With a sigh, she lowered it to the desk and began to fold it for carry. Hopefully her mother would understand and feel the truth of the attempt nonetheless.

"Detail. Pay attention to detail. Detail is the difference between good and great."
Stamina 5 | Strength 2 | Evasion 8 | Wisdom 10 | Power 2 | Accuracy 9
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