|Help Search Members Calendar Shoutbox|
|Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )||Resend Validation Email|
"You are outside, Penn," her mother replied without looking up, continuing to brush the tangles out of her daughters' hair, completely obvious to the eye roll her daughter rewarded her with for such an answer. Penn wasn't sure why her mother bothered - it was just going to become a mess again within the hour.
"No, I mean... why can't I go outside of this place?" Penn corrected, jabbing a finger in the direction of the retreating kids to emphasize her point before they rounded the corner and disappeared from sight. "I want to leave."
Her mother sighed, her hands stopping mid-brush, and voice sounding tired as she spoke: "Stop acting like you're some sort of prisoner here, Penn. You can leave on Sunday just like everyone else."
It was an age old argument between the two Wolfe women - an argument Penn lost more often than not. She knew the rules of the circus; she'd had the 'curse' pushed down her throat from the time she was a babe who could barely walk three steps without falling on her bottom. It didn't matter to her mother that she had yet to sign a contract with Monsieur Sombre, and wouldn't even be given the option to for a good five more years. She was expected to follow the same rules as the ones forever tied to the enchanted circus she called her home.
It was for her own good, her mother cautioned her, to become accustomed to the routine before her signing. Her mother feared that once she had the taste of true freedom on her tongue, she would never come back; she feared she would attempt to live a normal life among the rubes, and fall in love with it.
"Your heart is too gentle, too wild, and if you don't control it, it will break you, Penn." Her mother resumed her brushing after placing a quiet kiss on the top of her head. "If you don't stop thinking of your home as a cage, you'll spend the rest of eternity in misery, my little one."
"You're wrong, mama," Penn mumbled to herself, staring off at the empty sidewalk. "Nothing could break me."
In all honesty, she shouldn't have found so much excitement out among the rubes. Even at their most exciting, their most daring, they were tame and ordinary compared to the men and women she was surrounded by daily - the sword eaters, the tightrope walkers, the animal tamers and rowdy clowns, and all manner of sideshow characters - but they were different with their normality. She was fascinated by their simple, unimaginative lives, studying them from afar like one might watch an exotic creature, always curious until the day she managed to gather up enough courage to sneak off from the circus grounds. It'd only been for an hour, wandering down the sidewalks, peeking into stores, but it felt like an adventure.
And, like her mother feared, it became an exhilarating addiction to slip off on her own.
She wonders if her fascination with the rubes is because her father was one. A no named man her mother met on Sunday, and unknowingly returned to the circus with something a little extra. Penn has never asked about her father; even if her mother remembered the name of the man - she didn't - it would have been near impossible to track him down. Besides, she's not searching for a family on her trips; she already has an overly large one of those within the circus.
She doesn't know what she's looking for but when she's out with the rubes, crashing their parties usually, she feels like she's close to figuring out what it is.
The atmosphere becomes almost chilly the moment the words are out of the boys' mouth. She blinks, her head relaxed against his thigh for a second or two longer before she pushes herself up to meet his eyes, arching a blonde brow as though she didn't quite understand the question. "Excuse me?" She's giving him a second chance; a chance to apologize or mumble a lame "nothing" in response to her question. The rest of their merry little group has gone silent, some attempting to be discreet as they listen in while others stare at them without shame. It's only the second time her home has been brought up; the first was when she introduced herself nearly two weeks previously.
"You know... I mean, we've all seen the show, and you have to admit that some of those people are just fucking freaky. The cannibal? The animal people? The bearded lady?" the idiot boy begins to name off the "freaks", lifting up his fingers with each title and earning a couple of nods of agreement from the rest. It's enough to get her blood boiling; her adrenaline is pumping and she feels almost light headed and dizzy from the sudden rage that threatens to overwhelm her. Her mother softened teased that she felt too strongly, with all of her being. When she loved something, she loved it, and when she hated something, oh how she could hate.
"You're so tiny, your body can only handle one emotion at a time, like a fairy," her mother would tease as she brushed or braided her hair or helped her with her newest hoop trick.
"Not that I'm saying you're a freak, Penn," the boy is quick to say as though that's why she's suddenly gone so still and quiet - a rare thing indeed for her.
He's moving to reach for her when she still doesn't respond, reaching out as though to put a hand on her shoulder or maybe to stroke her cheek, but she reacts before he even gets close. Her fist connects with his nose hard enough that she knows she'll feel it for days, but every bit of soreness she'll feel is worth it just to hear him cry out, "You broke my fucking nose, you bitch!" She wants to hit him again; she wants to hit all the ones who nodded along with him while he insulted the men and women of her family.
"That was for calling them freaks the first time. And this," she starts, standing up, her leg kicking out to catch him in the groin, "Is for the second time." She turns to the rest of the group, glaring at each and every one of them. She hadn't known them long, only a couple of weeks, but she had thought of them as friends. Now, she looked at them and saw enemies. "And I catch any of you fuckers in the audience at anymore of the shows, and you won't have to worry about a cannibal getting a hold of you."
Her mother was right; it was harder to accept the single day after enjoying so much before.
Penn has a ton of these. She's extremely sociable, and basically has made it her mission to know who everyone in the circus is and what they do for a living. Even if you don't know her she probably knows you.
I imagine she might have made a handful of enemies over the years - maybe someone doesn't like how damn nosy she is or she's gotten a little mouthy with the wrong person or something. But, people generally seem to just like Penn despite themselves. She has a way of worming her way into your heart no matter how small it might be so there won't be too many of these.
As for lovers... well, it's currently complicated. Up until a few months back she was dating the glass walker Fabian Decker and things were going pretty well until she caught him cheating on her... with his sister. Needless to say, a break up ensued and Penn was heartbroken over it. She also recently discovered her feelings for her best friend Wolfgang Schmitt are more romantic than previously thought. So, that's a mess.