The boy’s eyes are always angry, except when he plays his lyre.
He’s stealthy, knowledgeable, brave, mysterious. The songs he teaches are the roads I travel, the advice he gives the key to my progress. A cowl hides most of his face. Tufts of blond hair frame his eyes, those fierce eyes.
I am Link, and he is Sheik, except he’s actually Princess Zelda in disguise. Link isn’t supposed to figure that out until the end of the game, but I recognize her right away.
“They say that, contrary to her elegant image, Princess Zelda of Hyrule Castle is, in fact, a tomboy!”
—Gossip Stone, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
I’m going through my own thing with boys’ clothing. I insist on wearing nothing but baggy t-shirts and ripped jeans. I sometimes tie a flannel around my waist. I cut my hair short, and don’t mind at all when people mistake me for a boy.
I don’t want to be a boy, but I do want to stay a girl. A kid, that is. I don’t want to lose my rights to riding bikes, jumping off swings, and carrying a pocket knife up the tree in my grandma’s front yard so I can carve my initials into the highest branch within reach. I can feel and see myself turning into a woman, and it seems dangerous.