Wade couldn't stand his youngest sister Bonnie. She was always in the way, always following him around, and would pester him through all times of the day. He didn't hate her or anything, but annoyance was the first emotion that came to mind when his sister was brought up. Whenever he wanted to play with cousin Beau, Bonnie wanted to come too and mother would make him bring her. When he wanted to play by himself, she would always barge in and force him to let her play with him using the "I'll tell mother" shtick. He could never fight against it as both knew their mother favored Bonnie since she was the baby. That and he was pretty sure she was working and would do just about anything to get any of them out of her hair.
Bonnie also got her way over Beau's house. Whenever they all went over to his aunt's house, Ella would play with her dolls and naturally Bonnie should be too, but nope. She wanted in on whatever game they were playing even though it would ruin whatever dress she was wearing. He knew Scarlett would yell at him more than her, so he tried his best to tell her why she couldn't play with two rough boys, but then she would throw a tantrum. Beau and he would go back to playing only to have Aunt Melanie come in and ask them to allow her to play when she was really disguising it as telling them to do so. Sure enough, Bonnie managed to rip and dirty her dress and Wade was reprimanded for allowing her to do so.
There was a one thing he didn't have to include her in on and that was bath time. Wade laid back into the bath tub, closing his eyes and relishing in the fact that his annoying little sister couldn't bother him in the private area of his bathroom. He had only been in the tub relaxing after a day of school for a little while when he felt like someone was watching him. He opened his eyes and spotted Bonnie at the foot of his tub.
"Bonnie! What are you doing here?!" he asked happy that the bubbles in the tubs were covering his body.
"I wanna take a bath with you!" said Bonnie as she attempted to take off her dress.
"You can't take a bath with me! Go take one with Ella!" said Wade angrily. Bath time was his personal time. She was ruining it by invading his privacy and his time away from everything. Besides that, he was a BOY. It was inappropriate even if she was his baby sister.
"I'll do what I want!" she said in her stubborn way.
"Mammy!" he called out, hoping she was within earshot to retrieve her. Sure enough she came in and unlike Uncle Rhett and mother who just about always let her have her way, Mammy set her straight and practically dragged her out of the bathroom with her trying to pry Mammy's strong grip on her.
Wade sighed in relief and closed his eyes once more. Not even five minutes had passed when Bonnie came running back into the bathroom and jumped right into the bath water with him, fully dressed with only her shoes off. He cried out in anger as she grinned at him mischievously. How she had slipped away from Mammy was beyond him. Where was Uncle Rhett when you needed him?
Bonnie began splashing around in the tub much to the annoyance of Wade. He didn't want to move out of the tub because the towel was much too far away from him and he would need to get out of the tub to retrieve it. He didn't want the little girl to see his naked body. She scooted closer to him and he pushed her away. "Ella, you can't be in here! Get out!"
"No! I wanna stay!" she splashed water at him.
"No!" she came closer until they were face to face. "I want to stay with you."
"Eugenie Victoria Butler!" their mother had come into the bathroom, her hands on her hips. For one of the few times his life, he was relieved to see his mother.
She jumped and turned facing her mother. She was going to get it now! She had no choice but to considering how inappropriate it was and the fact that she had ruined yet another dress. It was wasn't often she was scolded, but now was to the time she was going to be. The raven haired woman grabbed a towel and demanded that the little girl get out of the tub.
"But...!" Bonnie said getting out of the tub.
"But nothing!" said Scarlett as Bonnie came over dripping all over the place. At this rate though, it didn't matter. Water was all over the floor thanks to her splashing. "And you've ruined your expensive new dress! You know better than to do that and get into the bath in your dress! To top it all off, you invaded your brother's privacy! You know better than to come in here while Wade's bathing!"
"I wanted to spend time with him though!" she pouted.
"You could have waited until after he was done." she said wrapping a towel around her wet daughter. "Mammy, go get Bonnie dried off and changed. If you see Prissy, tell her to come clean this mess up once Wade's done."
As Mammy got the little girl by the hand and led her away, Scarlett surveyed the bathroom floor and shook her head before leaving behind them. He sighed with relief and went back to his bath. Well with what little water there was in it. Once he was done and put on his play clothes, he headed downstairs to head over to his cousin's house when he heard Bonnie's voice ring out. She ran up to him.
"Where ya goin'?" she asked smiling at him.
"None of your business."
"I'm going over to Aunt Melanie's house."
"I wanna come too!"
"You don't want to. We're uh..." he tried thinking of an excuse so Bonnie wouldn't want to come. Beau had the flu? No, if he did she'd just find their mom. It had to be something disgusting. "We're going to make mud pies out of mucus, worms, snails, and fish."
She scrunched up her nose in disgust. "Ew!"
"Yes, so you wouldn't want to come and help us out with that would you?"
"Of course not!" said young girl. "And you shouldn't be helping Beau do that either! You should stay here and play with me!"
He opened up his mouth to retort, but then the booming of lightening automatically cancelled his plans. Now he had to stay inside and play with her. He found playing princess boring and tried suggesting they play a war related game. However Bonnie shut this idea down just as quick as he brought it up. He was relieved when dinner time came thus freeing him from playing with her.
After dinner, Wade got ready for bed while Bonnie and Ella were being given bathes. Mammy did her rounds of making sure the kids were tucked in, stopping in Wade's room first before heading to the nursery. An hour had just barely passed passed when he heard his room door opening.
"Who's there?" he asked sleepily as he sat up
"It's Bonnie." she whispered.
Wade reached over to his lamp on his nightstand. Standing in the door was was Bonnie in her mint green night gown holding her favorite red blanket. He sighed. "Bonnie, you can't be in here! Mother and will get mad if you're not in bed!"
If mother caught her in here and not in the nursery, she'd force her to go back even if she kicked, screamed, and begged. There was no Uncle Rhett to allow her to sleep with him or give her what she wanted. Bonnie just shook her head and closed the door before coming over to his bed and climbing into it.
"I don't want to go back in there! There's a monster under there!"
"There's no such things as monster, now go back to bed." said Wade annoyed. All he wanted to do was to sleep and Bonnie was interrupting him.
"Wade, please let me sleep in here!" she said as tears started to flow down her face. She did really look scared of sleeping in her bed and in that moment, he felt sympathy towards her. He knew how it felt to be afraid of sleeping in his own bed.
Back when the war was still going on, he had been terrified that the Yankees would come and get him in his bed. Unlike his sister, he had no to run to. There was his aunt, but after making the mistake of playing around on her bed back when she was still weak from having his cousin, Scarlett had spanked him and Wade hardly ever went back into her room for a while. He slept in his own room in the house and he wished he could go to his mother for comfort, but ever since that night he feared her. As for Aunt Melly, he didn't dare get out of bed and run into her room for fear his mother would hit him again for bothering her.
Even if her monsters weren't real to him as the Yankee soldiers were, they were still real to her. Besides that, she was his sister and he was supposed to be the man of the house while Uncle Rhett was on a business trip. That meant he had to take care of the girls while he was away. Even if he didn't have sympathy for her, his duty as a big brother required him to be there for her.
"Okay, but we're keeping the light off." he said as he turned off the lamp.
"I'll be fine if I'm with you." she whispered as she snuggled up against him. Even in the bare moonlight shining into his room, he could detect a small blush covering her cheeks as he pulled the covers over them.
Why was she blushing or was the darkness playing tricks on him? He shrugged it off, not finding it a big deal at the moment. Right now, all he wanted to do was going to sleep.
I can't remember if Scarlett either spanked him or slapped him in that one scene from the book. Either way, I believe whatever happened that night caused him to fear Scarlett or not as comfortable around her plus the fact that she hardly ever paid attention to him. It has barely anything to do with the story, but I'm just pointing it out.