|Sticks and Stones
Author: worthwritingfor PM
Grace Claw, abused by her father ever since her mother left unaccounted for when she was three, meets a strange boy who claims to be her brother, throwing her into a world of kidnapping, romance, and war. And after finding the mysterious yellow-eyed werewolf named Koda, things cannot get much worse. But then again, everyone thinks that...and they're always wrong. COMPLETE.Rated: Fiction T - English - Supernatural/Adventure - Chapters: 31 - Words: 78,855 - Reviews: 138 - Favs: 48 - Follows: 46 - Updated: 12-03-12 - Published: 04-14-12 - Status: Complete - id: 3013637
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Sticks and Stones
The little girl cowered in the corner of the bathroom, trying to block out the screams of the man calling her name. She could hear glass breaking in the living room as her father, Travis, stumbled around in a drunken stupor, looking for her. She whimpered and pressed her hands against her ears, wishing the noise would stop.
It did, suddenly. She lifted her head and stared with mild curiosity at the door, quaking with fear. It was open a crack, enough for her to see through it; nothing but the light from a lamp. She sighed quietly in relief and closed her eyes. Maybe she could sleep a little bit before her father started up again.
"Grace," someone cooed. "Where are you? I have a surprise for you."
The girl's – Grace's – eyes shot open. Through the crack in the door she could see the dark shadow of a man. He was carrying a bottle of what she assumed was alcohol, swishing it around in his hand. Grace inched farther into the corner, if possible, fighting back tears. Crying would only encourage him.
The door swung all the way open. A thin, muscular man waltzed in before collapsing on the ground. Most of the alcohol spilled over the bathroom floor.
When Grace's father spotted her, he gave her a disgusting grin. She squeezed her eyes shut again.
"Well, hello there, Gracie," Travis said, voice slurred. "I've been lookin' everywhere for you." He crawled over to Grace and shoved the bottle of clear liquid into her face. "Want some?"
The eight-year-old shook her head, keeping her eyes closed. She knew what would happen if she opened them.
"Yes you do." He tapped her forehead with the bottle. "Drink it!"
She shook her head again.
"Look at me! Open your eyes!"
She knew that whether she did or not, he would still be mad. So, reluctantly, she opened her eyes and looked up at her father.
He slapped her. Hard. She held back tears, which were on the brink of falling down her cheeks.
"Don't look at me with those eyes!" he roared. "Those are your mother's eyes. That lying-"
Grace cringed, hating the next word that came out of his mouth. She'd heard it plenty times before, and she knew only too well that it meant dog.
She shrank away from her father's glare, closing her eyes again. She wished he would leave her alone. It was true; she had her mother's eyes. They were a strange color – violet.
Travis stood up shakily, leaning against the wall for support.
"I'll just go see your sisters, then," he said. "They love beer."
"No!" Grace said, her eyes widening. She jumped up from the floor and followed her father into her and her sisters' room.
Isabelle and Elizabeth were sleeping soundly in their bunk bed, completely unaware of their father's current state.
"Izzy! Lizzy!" he shouted. "Get up!"
The twins woke with a start. They rubbed their eyes sleepily and blinked confusedly at their father.
"D-Daddy?" Izzy said from the bottom bunk, blue eyes wide.
"Hello, sweetie." He stumbled over to them, hanging onto the ladder that led up to Elizabeth's bunk to steady himself. "I brought you some beer!"
"No thank you, Daddy," Izzy said.
The man glared at the five-year-old. "Drink it, Liz."
"I'm Liz!" said the other twin from the top bunk, sounding rather offended.
Travis took a swig from the bottle and grabbed Izzy's arm. "Finish it."
"No," she said stubbornly. Grace moved forward, ready to take any blow meant for her sister.
Travis dropped the bottle, letting the alcohol spill over the floor. He pulled back his now free hand and aimed for the little girl's face.
"Stop it!" Grace cried, clenching her fists in a mix of fury and fear. "Don't touch her."
"Shut it, brat!" her dad said. He turned toward her, shoving Izzy back against the wall. She whimpered.
"You're just like your mother," Travis continued, getting dangerously close to his oldest daughter. "Stupidly brave and naïve."
He pulled back his arm once more. Grace barely got a chance to close her eyes when his fist collided with her stomach, knocking the wind out of her. She gasped and fell to the ground. She couldn't stop the flow of tears now falling freely down her face.
"Gracie!" the twins shouted simultaneously.
"That'll teach you," Travis muttered, and exited the room, slamming the door behind him. The twins waited until they no longer heard their father's receding footsteps before climbing out of their bunks and rushing over to their sister.
"Are you okay?" Liz asked her quietly.
Grace wiped at her cheeks, taking deep breaths. "I'm okay," she lied. "Now go back to bed before he comes back."
The five-year-olds nodded and crawled back into their beds. They closed their eyes, but not before casting Grace worried glances. "Thank you, Gracie."
"Don't thank me." Grace got up slowly, getting into her own small bed and sighing into her pillow. She gradually slipped into much needed slumber, silent tears still sliding down her cheeks. The barks of the neighbor's dogs brought her peace of mind, somehow.
The nightmares didn't come. Instead, Grace dreamt of wolves. But she wasn't scared, like any normal little girl would be.
© 2012 by worthwritingfor. All rights reserved.