Jensen is a 12 y.o. kid that goes on a trip with the school. During this trip, and with the support of his friends and family, he'll discover things about himself that he didn't know, and grow up to become a more complete person.
A couple of days later, we went on an excursion to a trail marked out by the river canyon. As we had been going upstream the river during all these days, the river had turned from a wide calmed mass of water to a faster stream of troubled waters that had conformed lovely rocky environments.
I've decided to dress myself in some comfortable blue jeans and a black hoody. Yeah, not too girly, I know, but it's not that I have to be a girly princess all the time, is it? We were going to walk for quite some time, it was a little on the chilly side, and I really wanted to be comfortable. Erika and her friends had also chosen comfortable clothes, but I guess theirs were a bit more feminine than mine.
I guess everyone was getting so used to seeing me so girly these days that I saw more surprised faces than I had when I had put on the dress. One of the girls, a schoolmate, even asked me "but, you're still a girl, aren't you?". I just shrugged.
Miss Cooper was finally able to get to talk to me alone. I had the feeling that she had been quietly trying to do that for a few days, but as was almost always with someone, I guess I made it hard on her.
"So, how are you doing, baby?", she asked me. "Everything OK?"
Miss Cooper often called me baby when we were talking alone. My mother used to do that too. She and my mother had some kind of friendship, and Miss Cooper tended to care a lot for me, look after me, and be there when I needed some support or help for whatever reason.
"Yes, Miss Cooper", I answered. "The trip is being great! I'm so glad I came!"
"And everything's OK, right?"
I was wondering what as she as getting at.
"You mean about the girly stuff and so?", I asked her. She just nodded.
"Well, it's no big deal", I added. "I mean, it's not like I'm hurting anyone or breaking anything or something like that, is it?"
"Oh, sweetheart, of course not!", she hugged me. "It's just that we've been a bit worried about you."
"Ah! Don't be! I'm able to defend myself, don't worry!", I replied.
She frowned a bit. I thought she was going to say something about fights and needing to defend oneself or something like that, but apparently she thought best.
"Jen", she looked at me seriously.
She kept staring for some seconds.
"Do you feel like a girl?", she finally asked. "Do you want to be a girl?"
"Dunno", I replied. "I don't know what it's like to be a girl. How does a girl feel?"
"Well,", she answered, after thinking about it for an instant. "I guess every girl is different, not every girl feels the same."
"Maybe I'm neither a boy nor a girl", I suggested. "Maybe I'm just Jen?"
She just nodded approvingly.
"Jen, you have to promise to tell me", she added. "Whatever problem you have, as small as it might be, I want you to tell me. Deal?"
I nodded in agreement.
"Baby, do you want us to keep you in the girl's rooms, or do you prefer to go back to the boy's?"
"I prefer the girl's, if you don't mind", I suggested.
"Of course, honey. I just wanted to know."
After the incident with Lucas no one dared give a hard time. There were a couple of times when I had the feeling that someone was about to say something about me, but a firm look of warning seemed to discourage them. I wouldn't have really minded another bleeding nose if it was needed, but it didn't seem to be the case.
That night, in our room, I was thinking about home. Erika and Ash were there too, but Sarah was somewhere out, with Joey.
"Sis?", I called Erika. "Do you think mum and dad would mind if I was a girl?", I asked.
"Of course not, Jenny. They don't have any problem at all with that, don't worry"
"They don't?", I asked back, surprised by her answer. "They know?"
"Of course they know, honey", she replied. "Aunt Sue and I have talked to them about you, and they are cool about it". Aunt Sue was Miss Cooper.
I just stared at her, astounded. She came to me and hugged me tightly. Ashley came too.
"Jenny, it's OK. It's not as if you were a different person or anything like that, is it?", asked Ash rhetorically. "They loved you to bits when you were a boy, and they love you to bits exactly the same now that you're a girl"
"I'm not a girl, Ash", I replied
"Are you not?", she asked, amused
"Well, to be honest, I just don't know"
"Don't worry too much about it, blondie", said Ash finally. "Just be the best you that you can be and there would be no problems". She kissed me on the forehead and ruffled my hair playfully. I felt happy.
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