Chapter One~ Changed Plans

*Marie*

Annabelle's blonde hair was silky on my sweaty palms. Her skin was greasy though, and clammy. I couldn't help but shudder as I stood beside my kneeling sister, holding her mane back.

She must have sensed my disgust. Her grey eyes settled on me from beneath dark lashes as her ashen face appeared from inside the toilet. "I told you. I have. The flu." She enunciated each word, as if I hadn't understood it when she'd first told me.

I did understand. I just really did not believe her when it came to this. As selfish as it may be, I had my own theory about the sixteen year old 'goddess'. And that was what she was. Everyone saw it... except her, of course.

I started to reply, but was cut short with a dismissive wave of her hand. I could already feel my 'model' face coming, a pouted mouth and furrowed brows. I glared at her, and with a disgruntled scoff, I withdrew my hand, letting the golden sheets fall like water across her shoulders.

I turned and walked out of the bathroom, making sure to slam the door behind me. I silently fumed in front of the closed door, standing in the dimness of the hall. Crossing my arms over my chest, I glanced at my watch. 4:40. Mom and Jake should be home around five. I leaned back against the door and closed my eyes.

From inside the bathroom, I could hear that Annabelle had returned to her vomiting. * * * *

~Annabelle R. ~

I watched as my punky, funky sister strutted out, clad in an I.C.P. sweatshirt and khakis that hugged her hips. She could be a model- she was skinny enough. She even had the perfect haughty walk, especially when she felt rejected.

My lips twitched in slight remorse at this thought. Then I had to put my hand down, to balance myself. I'd gotten a headache from shoving my face into the home of truly the most pungent chemicals made.

I swallowed the last of the sharp taste in my mouth, and then repositioned myself over the toilet. It didn't take any effort this time. It just came.

A few minutes passed as I continuously retched. When my stomach tightened, I stopped, breathing heavily.

Leaning back, I glanced at my watch. 4:43. Sighing, I stood up and flushed the toilet, then fell backwards onto my butt and sat against the bathtub.

Suddenly I became vaguely aware of Marie's voice faintly blending in with the background. It was steady, with no change in pitch. I crawled on my hands and knees slowly, then swayed in front of the bathroom door. Cautiously, I leaned and strained to pick up the words.

As I realized what she was doing, I became enraged. I stood up quickly and swung the door open. Marie practically fell backwards onto my feet. I glared at her. "Don't. Don't you dare pray for me to your non- existent god, okay? There is no god. If there is, then he is a merciless one- how could someone that you see to be such a wonderful superior make people like me--" I gestured quickly at myself, then stopped. "I know I can't make you see the truth about your heaven and hell and life. I give up on that. But Do Not pray for me." With that, I stepped over her in anger and headed to my room. * * * *

*Marie*

I stood up, totally abashed. My eyes were stinging and I had to bite my lip from crying out. I held my hand up to the wall behind me.

After a few minutes, I made my way down stairs, just in time for Jake. I shivered from the blast of cool air as he closed the door behind him. He grinned, looking at me and unbuttoning his bulky overcoat. "And I work out there." I nodded at him, and then walked into the kitchen.

I looked around, listening to Mom's boyfriend stumbling around in the living room. I hadn't smelled it on his breath- but he had developed ways of hiding it.

I shook my head and sat down on my stool at the island. For a minute, I just traced the familiar groove in the marble top, thinking about Annabelle. Of course I suspected it. But- I just couldn't bring myself to think it. She was tanned, and had a good body. Not fat, by any standards, but not sickly.

Sighing, I leaned high over the counter, pushing with my feet on the stool's bars, and peered into the sink. I gave a rueful sneer. Steak. And what was I going to eat? It figured. No one paid much attention- and when they did, they forgot. Hello? I slid off the stool and walked over to the sink and stared at the bloody meat. Vegetarian here!

In disgust, I returned to the living room. Jake was panting, looking proud. I laughed as I realized his feat: he'd gotten his shoes off.

"So- what's for dinner?" I peered at him slyly.

He shrugged. "Green beans. Biscuits. And ste- " A wave of realization washed over his face. "Oh." He sighed, and put his arm across my shoulders. "I am so sorry, Marie. I didn't even think about it. Hey, how about me calling up for some pineapple pizza?"

I glared at him and pursed my lips in what I hoped to come across as indignation, but the imaginary aroma of pineapples in my head was too tempting. I giggled. "Fine. You're forgiven. But only if I get lots of pineapples."

He smiled at me, and was off into the kitchen.

I sighed, and collapsed on the couch.

I peeked from beneath my closed lids upon hearing a click from upstairs. Then another. Soft footsteps. I smirked softly as Annabelle appeared at the top of the staircase. I wanted to say hey. But I went with my instinct and remained silent. As she made her way down the stairs, I could tell she was making sure not to look at me. Fine. She wasn't all that irresistible either. I snorted in disgust and rolled over, snuggling as far into the lemon scented cushions as I could. * * * *

A/n- whoo, it's short and not veri remade but I sai it's wonderfully wonderful!