Signed, The Patchwork Scholar
To whom it may concern...
I always thought it was a little cliche to write down everything going on in your head, but if anything, writing down these thoughts of mine are probably good, anyway. Ah, what a funny world this is. Haha. Yeah right.
Anyway, if you expected some sappy, overly tragic tale of lost love, crumpled notes and stomped dreams, then put this back where you found it. I hate the prospect of rubbing my personal tradgedies in everyone's faces because I want someone to pity me. That's pathetic.
No, this letter is those who always wondered why those books were written by the barely-15 Patchwork Scholar, and what exactly that name meant.
Is this a backstory? Probably. I'd call it a memoir, not a backstory. I mean, really. Calling your past a freaking backstory? Um, no thank you.
So, let's get down to business shall we?
No, I'm not telling you about my early life. My life as a toddler and such is none of your business. Besides, if I wanted you to know, I would've said it to you in person! It's called logic.
Let's start after I published my second novella. Back then, my deadlines, pressure, writer's block and dedication had ended up in losing all my friends, whether they were good friends or not. I was very lonely and frustrated, and I felt trapped in that stupid office all day. It was driving me crazy.
Yearning for some excitement, I asked my agent, Callie, to send me to London. I needed to unwind and I wasn't planning on writing another book anytime soon, and it might even be good for me. "Please, Callie?" I begged. "You know how depressed I've been. Don't you think it would help? And I love travel! Please?"
After some more grovelling, Callie finally agreed to let me go and live in London for a while. She and my agency pulled some strings as a means to let me travel alone, though I was only 13. Eventually, I was given reason and I went off to my new destination, hoping for some peace.
I had a small house to myself for my stay. My agent kept track of me by giving me a phone, and she called every morning and evening to check up on me. I was a little annoyed at first, but I knew she meant well so I didn't mind eventually.
The first week, I basically did whatever I felt like. I toured shops, ate at resturaunts and went home to read, sleep or fool around on my laptop. For the first time in a while, I truly felt content. It was a nice feeling.
My life really changed in the second week, though.
I made a friend.
It was raining that day. Then again, I had always been told that it rained a lot in England, so I kind of expected it. I didn't mind too much, since I had a nice umbrella with me. I was going home after a tiring day of walking, and was minding my own business.
However, I passed an alleyway as I walked, and suddenly, I encountered a big, angry dog. It growled menacingly at me, as if it were angry that I was being there. I liked dogs, but I got a bad feeling from this one and ran. I was in such a frenzy to get away that I tripped on a rock near a dirt path and tumbled into a muddy patch of grass at the bottom of a hill. The dog had seen my trip, but since I was no longer in its way, it left.
So, I was left in the downpour, soaking and sad and scared. At first, I just sat there, crying. When I finished crying, I got up and walked down the path, curious to see where it lead.
I walked for a long time. I didn't know where I was going, after all. I didn't know another way home and I was scared to face the dog again, so I just kept pressing on.
Eventually, I arrived at a huge house. It was so beautiful and regal! It looked just like a mansion!
Curious, I walked up to the front door and stood still a second. Was it even lived in? I had no idea. Maybe it was haunted! That would've been cool. But not a place to stay forever.
So I knocked.
The door opened to reveal a pretty young woman with big green eyes and silky dark brown hair. When she saw me standing on her porch, dripping and miserable, she immediately yanked me inside. She drew a bath and gave me some warm clothes, and after I had washed up and changed she hurried me into the kitchen for some pumpkin muffins.
She asked for my name, so I told her. Elise. She suddenly jumped, noticing that I was the young American author everybody talked about. She said she liked my books, to which I felt flattered.
She introduced herself as Bridget Walters. She was 24 years old and had inherited this huge house as a gift from her late mother. I gave my condolences and asked if she had any other family. Bridget told me that she only had a sister, who lived in Wales.
After I ate, I asked Bridget if she could help me get home. I told her my address, and she told me that my house was a block over. I asked if she could escort me, so she put on a raincoat and walked me down the street to my home. She invited me for tea and biscuits (cookies to the typical American), which I gladly accepted before saying goodbye.
That was how I became such good friends with Bridget. We'd talk all the time and we enjoyed each other's company. She told me all about the house and herself, like how she once spilled tea all over her pet cat once. That was really funny.
I told her all about my life and myself, and what I strung-together self image I had. She listened intently and set down her cup when I finished my explanation.
"You know," she said, "You're very interesting. You talk like you're arrogant but act all shy, while in reality you're just lonely. What a curious thing."
"Curious indeed," I muttered.
"I could compare you to a patchwork quilt," she said thoughtfully. "Made up of many different things at once, but still kept together by those threads. You're a patchwork girl, Elise."
That's when it struck me.
After having tea with Bridget, I hurried home, got out some paper and began a new manuscript. I called it Words Like Patchwork, and didn't stop writing until I fell asleep at my desk.
The book was based off Bridget and that wonderful house, set in the 1800s or something like that. I spent two months writing it, sitting at my desk for hours every day, writing.
Eventually, I handed it to Callie and it was published. Bridget was overjoyed, and she couldn't express how proud she was. It made me feel good, to have done that.
After that day, I took a look at my mismatched, cobbled-together personality and gave myself a new name.
It's been a year now, and I've returned to America. I feel truly accomplished in that I made someone else happy, and that was good enough for me. I adopted a snarky streak as a way to spice up myself, and even sewed myself a patchwork coat as a statement to my pen name. It felt great, knowing I had this new life.
So, to conclude, I write this letter to show how happy I am that I worked so hard. I'm about to leave for France, and who knows what I'll meet there. I'll leave this letter in my office, so I'll have something interesting to think about on my stay. Did anyone read the letter? Maybe. I might never know.
You know what? I think I could be OK with that.
The Patchwork Scholar