Just like always, my alarm goes off at 5:30, and just like always, I hit the snooze button until 6:00. It's a typical morning of taking twenty minutes to wrench myself out of bed, then realizing I'd better get my ass moving or my sister will get to the shower before me and I'll end up late to school. Yep, completely ordinary morning.

After getting ready, I saunter down the stairs into the kitchen. My mom is leaning against the counter, talking on her cell phone with an annoyed expression on her face. She hardly notices my appearance as I open the pantry and grab a pop tart.

I sit down at the table after pouring myself a glass of milk. Remembering the chapter of Left Behind I have yet to read for my first hour lit class, I pull it out and prop it open against the milk carton while I eat. Procrastination and multitasking, one of the greatest combinations ever created, even better than peanut butter and jelly.

A little before 7:00, Summer appears at the door to the kitchen. "Morning, Mommy," she says, acknowledging my mother who has just gotten off the phone.

"Morning, Sweetie," Mom replies, slightly distracted. "Sleep well?"

"Kind of. I couldn't stop thinking about tonight."

"You'll do just fine, I'm sure. Your father's plane lands at 3:45 and then the three of us will be in the audience watching when you perform your solo, right Andrea?"

I choke slightly, looking up. "Since when do I have to go? I've got two papers to write tonight."

"Well, if you didn't procrastinate so much, you wouldn't have this problem, now would you?" Mom asks.

I roll my eyes. "Whatever. I'm still not going."

"Sorry, but you don't have a choice in the matter. After you get home we're picking up your father and going to watch your sister's concert, end of story."

"I'm eighteen, I can do what I want and I don't want to go, so. . .I'm not going."

"My house, my rules. You're going." And with that, the conversation is over.

I roll my eyes again as I turn my attention back to my book and there's no more conversation until my mom leaves for work. She kisses Summer on the forehead and waves goodbye to me, though I pretend not to notice. "Have a nice day at school, girls," she says on her way out the door.

I look up at the clock. 7:16. "You'd better get your butt moving or you're gonna miss the bus," I tell Summer.

She sticks her tongue out at me childishly. "I'm not gonna miss the bus, I've still got ten minutes."

"Whatever," I say, getting up from the table to head up stairs and grab my school stuff.

I return to the kitchen to slip on my shoes by the door. "Since I'm not coming to your concert, good luck tonight," I say as I step out the door.

"You're just too jealous of my awesome abilities," she calls after me before the door shuts.

I roll my eyes and set out for school.

Just a normal day.

I awoke suddenly, my breathing heavy and cold sweat clinging to my body. It wasn't the first time I'd been visited by the ghost of my mother and my sister in my sleep, nor was it the first time I'd relived that day in my dreams. No matter how many times I experienced it, though, it did nothing to relieve the way I always felt afterward.

The room around me was pitch-black except for the green numbers on the digital clock proclaiming the time to be 4:38 a.m. on July 15. Taking a deep breath to slow my racing heart, I laid back against the pillow, staring blankly up at the ceiling that I couldn't see but knew was there, thinking.

Sixth months. Today was exactly six months since that fateful day that changed all of our lives. I wondered if anyone else realized that. The lecherous Barbarians would probably spend the day the same way they had every other day since the Snap. The people of the Coalition had probably been marking the day and planned some kind of ceremony in memorial to what had happened. Everything had happened so fast and strangely that it was impossible to know what to be mourning…

It's study hall. I have my earbuds in, my music up loud to drown out the voices of those around me. So far, I have no homework, so I lean back in my desk, my eyes closed.

I'm on the verge of dozing off when I hear a faint buzzing noise, like the sound when you have the radio on and you drive under a series of power lines.

I pull out my earbuds, looking at my iPod to figure out what's wrong, but the buzzing continues, slightly louder now. I look around and see that everyone else hears it too and is looking around, confused and annoyed.

I put my fingers in my ears to make the sound go away, but it doesn't. It's like the sound is coming from inside my head.

A few moments later, it stops, just as suddenly as it had begun. Everyone goes back to what they were doing to begin with. Like nothing had happened.

I shook the thoughts from my mind and rolled over, pulling the blankets closer as I tried to fall back asleep.


A/N: I've been playing with this story-line for a while in my head and finally decided to put it down on paper, so I hope you enjoy it!

Anyway, this story should move along quickly since I know where it's going and I have writer's block when it comes the rest of the stories I'm working on. Please review!