Here's my scholarly character guys, hope you like her.
Full Name: Millie Birchpaw
Build: also scrawny
Job/Title: Scholar living at Salamandastron, specializing in astronomy
Physical Description: Millie is four feet ten inches tall, and weighs only a hundred pounds. She has light brown fur, with just a hair (haha, pun ) of green in it. She claims it’s because her great, great grandfather was a toad, but it’s more than likely just a genetic malfunction of sorts. There is one disorder she has that there’s no doubt about. Millie can’t get hungry. Literally, cannot feel the sensation that tells the brain that the body needs nutrients. She’s so small and scrawny because she’s nearly starved to death on multiple occasions. Luckily she has a constant companion to help her remember to eat, a mole by the name of Pook. Millie normally wears a small habit that actually looks quite baggy on her, and loves to keep the hood up. Her face is rarely hidden though, just framed by the hood. The fringes of her habit are dyed blue and she wears a sash across her stomach as a belt.
Possessions: Millie usually carries around a random star chart in her sash, usually one that is of no use in the current situation, such as a chart of the night sky in Mossflower while she’s traveling in Southsward. She also has a quill tucked behind her ear at all times and not much else really that she herself carries. The rest of her astronomical supplies are carried by her assistant Pook, practically a mobile laboratory. He carries instruments, spare parchment, ink, and food practically everywhere. Needless to say, Pook is an amazingly strong little mole.
Personality: Millie is very hyperactive and happy almost all the time, despite her disorder. You’ll usually catch her giggling or smiling at something small like a butterfly or a stained glass window, and she enjoys making friends, though she shows affection in strange ways. Pook on the other hand speaks only with Millie, and minimally even then.
-Friendly (Raises Morale)
-Can read the stars, as well as any star chart ever drawn (Navigation)
-Can draw a star chart (Also Navigation)
-Will starve if left alone for too long (Needy)
-Cannot handle war or battles (Sheltered)
-Very, very physically weak (Scrawny)
Background: Millie was born in Mossflower, but her parents abandoned her for a reason that no one has ever discovered. It could have been because of her eating disorder, or they could have thought she wouldn’t survive because she was, apparently, born too early, they could have been murdered, or perhaps they were just terrible people. No matter why it happened, it happened, and Millie was left to die in a hollow stump. Some higher power somewhere must have been moved by the squirrel-babe’s plight however, because the stump ended up being smack in the middle of a long patrol scouting route.
The hares that found Millie were still young themselves, on their first actually “long” patrol. They’d gone scouting around Salamandastron plenty of times, but this was the first time they’d been on their own for more than a week. They were on their way back from visiting Redwall, dropping off reports on affairs up and down the Western coast, and were all tired and grumpy when they discovered Millie crying sorrowfully in the stump. One would have expected them to panic. One would have expected them to feel overwhelmed. One would have expected them to break under the stress of their own consciences telling them to save the child while logic told them they couldn’t. One would be right too, on all counts, but the young hares did the Long Patrol proud and took care of baby Millie anyway.
Once they calmed down after having a good, hard mental breakdown (At least two of them tying their ears in knots) They took Millie and redoubled their speed, sprinting almost the whole way to Salamandastron, which was closer than Redwall. Millie was very weak when they found her, and looked profoundly confused. Luckily, one of the hares realized Millie hadn’t eaten in hours but wasn’t complaining. She realized that must have been why Millie was so weak, so she had the idea to play a game with Millie as they ran, both of them sucking on rags soaked in soup to see who could get theirs soup free first. That silly, messy game might very well have saved Millie’s life.
After reaching the badger mountain Millie was rushed to the infirmary where she was examined and cared for. The patrol that found her was reprimanded for abandoning their duties without any thought as to the greater good, then publicly cheered and rewarded for their heroic act. In fine, young hare fashion though, they never did show up for their reward. Instead, they spent the next few weeks in the infirmary, watching over little Millie as she slowly grew stronger, learning to eat and gaining some of the weight she was missing.
Several weeks after Millie was brought into the mountain to be cared for, during which time she was given her name, the patrol that found her had to go out on patrol again, reluctantly, leaving her in the care of others. Millie did not like that at all. She cried for days on end, wailing every time she opened her mouth, and it was starting to keep her from eating, so it was a real problem. Everyone tried everything they could think of to calm her down, but she refused to be placated. Eventually the badger lord himself was called to help. And so, the badger lord at the time left the forge, put up his hammer, hitched up his trousers, and went to save the day.
He failed miserably.
Nothing worked, and then, to top everything off, Millie disappeared while everyone was trying to think of a way to calm her. Finding her should have been easy; just follow the screams; but they couldn’t hear her anymore. Everyone was afraid she had exhausted herself with her crying and was now lying somewhere, slowly starving without realizing it. They searched the rooms, the halls, the tunnels, the forge, even outside, but they never heard a peep of her. When they finally did find her, she wasn’t crying, explaining why they hadn’t found her earlier, but was instead making soft cooing noises and grinning from ear to ear.
She was sitting at a tiny table in the nursery, straight across from a tiny mole baby who just stared at her blankly, lethargically eating some squashed pear, as she giggled and cooed ceaselessly. The hares that found them stared in amazement for a few minutes, relieved beyond words to find Millie okay, then, nonchalantly and without warning, the baby mole took some of his squashed pear and stuffed it in Millie’s mouth, stopping the flow of chatter. By that time all the beasts that had been searching had gathered in the nursery and at this sight they all gasped. Millie herself was surprised to find her mouth full of food all of the sudden. She and the mole babe stared at each other for a while, Millie’s cheeks still full, then she swallowed, licked her lips, opened her mouth wide, and let out a heart melting “awwwwwww…” The little mole continued to feed her but no one noticed because they were all too busy laughing their tails off.
Flash forward five years and we find Millie and Pook best friends. By this age Millie understood that she had a disorder and could take care of herself relatively well, eating on a schedule of morning, noon, and evening rather than when she got hungry like most. Pook was always by her side and still fed her at times when she forgot. She had grown up with the mountain hares as her family, but she was sad because she didn’t want to become a warrior like them. She tried helping in the kitchens, but she couldn’t cook. She tried farming and made an entire acre of land totally desolate. She attempted to weave a blanket and tied herself and Pook to a ceiling beam. Among other things she tried blacksmithing, woodworking, playing music, carving stone, brewing, alchemy, trading, writing, and even blowing glass but she wasn’t any good at any of them.
Every day she would try something new, but at the end of the day, when she was inevitably asked to try something else, she would go up to the top of the mountain and sit despondently for several hours, staring at the sky. She became quite fond of watching the sunset and stars during those days, and more than one time the badger lord would join her for a few minutes, agreeing with her that sitting and staring at the stars was quite relaxing after a long, stressful day.
One night, as they were sitting, the badger lord started pointing out constellations to Millie and Pook. Millie just smiled and nodded at the badger lord, the kind of smile and nod an adult does when a child is telling them something they think is amazing, but is really quite obvious. The badger lord caught the squirrel maid’s condescending smile and chuckled at her. He suggested that she tell him something then, if she was so smart, and Millie took the challenge quite seriously. Cracking her tiny knuckles, Millie began to reveal all the things she had seen on her many nights of stargazing.
She traced the route of a comet she had seen a few weeks earlier, judged how moist the air was by how much the stars twinkled, determined what phase the moon was in despite it not being out that night, pointed out the North Star, and invented three new constellations. She would have kept going too if the badger lord hadn’t exclaimed, “and you say you can’t do anything?” Millie was confused, so the badger lord took her back down into the mountain, to a part of it she’d never been before; the library. Here, the badger lord showed her all the mountain’s books on astronomy, as well as some old, dusty, and dented navigating instruments. Millie was skeptical at first, until the badger lord told her how ships navigated using stars. Hearing this, Millie was ecstatic. Grabbing several books and handing Pook an astrolabe she ran off to her room, screaming that she was going to be a sailor.
Today, neither Millie nor Pook are sailors. They are both quite respected as beasts of learning though; Millie as an astronomer and Pook as an archaeologist. The two of them still live in Salamandastron, in rooms just off the library proper, but travel frequently. True to the badger lord’s words, sailors often gave Millie and Pook transport in exchange for charts of the stars in areas their ships frequented. Being so remarkable at her chosen profession, Millie’s charts are highly prized for their accuracy and clarity. Sailors say her charts have saved many vessels from going astray from their coarse, especially ships going far out to sea.