A quick glance at Uma is all it takes to identify a poster-child for a victim of teenage bullying. Sixteen years old, she is unambiguously and hideously ugly: she has a thick and unruly mane of black hair, including one eyebrow that looks like it was applied to her face with a greasy paintbrush; sweaty cheeks dotted in angry red pimples; a beak-like nose with hairs growing visibly on, underneath, and out of it; a horrific array of teeth that point seemingly in all directions. This is a face that does not need to be Photoshopped to be made to look like a bridge-dwelling troll.
Uma is well-acquainted with her own horrific appearance, and does what she can to minimize its impact, but this usually amounts to wearing a hoodie and keeping her eyes downcast when she’s in public—she makes no apparent meaningful effort at improving her appearance through grooming (but maybe she’s just discovered it’s pointless). Obviously, a life of torment at the hands of her peers has forced her into a deeply introverted and passive personality; her demeanor is quiet and non-confrontational to a fault.
But that’s not to say that Uma is weak or that she has no initiative. In fact, in the short time that the Bonfire pack has known her, she’s proven herself to be quite the capable sneak—and so long as she’s working in a medium through which people can’t see her face, she can be surprisingly competent socially. Apparently she has three online boyfriends.
Uma is despised by her own parents, who seem to feel as if they’re cursed with a hopelessly unmarriageable daughter. They are anxious to be rid of her, and they are not subtle about telling her so; yet Uma sometimes seems protective of her parents, and unwilling—or at least reluctant—to forsake them entirely. Perhaps there is still some shadow of tenderness, or at least gratitude, there.
From the room to which she mostly confines herself—with the door double-locked and dark cardboard blocking the windows—Uma lives the meaningful part of her life online. It’s in the world of computers that she can be whatever she wants, and it’s in this element that she truly thrives. She’s only been in the pack a short time, but she has already shown a strong aptitude not only for technical tasks like security and programming, but also on the social side of things. Apparently, in text, she has a rather magnetic personality.
Uma has rapidly become attached to Claire Poulin, whom she seems to cling to and—at least to some degree—idolize.
Is awkward around Annette Poulin because “it’s weird to hang out with somebody’s mom.”
Despises Eliza LaValle.