"Emma! Get down here! I can hear you practicing your solo, and I asked you to come down here ten minutes ago! You'll be grounded from your phone and your laptop if you aren't down here in five… four…" my mother yelled. Ugh, if only she knew how close I was to getting that high note! I'm just under pitch, and it's a tad squeaky, but I'll reach it soon enough!

I rushed down the stairs, jumping from the last step and slid into the kitchen. I knew she'd be absolutely furious with me, but I just had to keep trying. I needed to reach that note for my solo audition in choir for Shiru. It's hard enough in English, let alone Hebrew.

"Have you cleaned your room yet?" she questioned with a hint of impatience in her voice. No Mom, of course I haven't. Didn't you hear me singing? She thinks I'm a maid, forcing me to clean my room, mop the kitchen floors, take out the trash… -sigh-

"I was just about to, Mom. Chill," I responded to her anger.

"DON'T USE THAT TONE WITH ME, YOUNG LADY!" she retorted. It was then that she slapped me. I could feel the searing pain on my cheek of where her palm had landed. Tears welled up in my tear ducts, streaming down my face.

I darted back to my room, slamming into my door as my eyes got blurrier. As I fell to the ground, I grasped the doorknob and opened my chamber of secrets. I crawled towards my bed, barely making it on top, and bawled my eyes out.

A couple hours later, around dinnertime, I sulked and tried to hide my remote emotions around my mom. Lately, anything as little as a burned pizza could turn her into a tiger and scratch your face off. Ever since my dad cheated on my mom, she hasn't been nearly the same person. Now, it's just my mom and I. We're on our own, just like lone wolves in a cave.

At the table, it was silent, as I moved around my food to look like I ate it, and put a couple bites it my mouth. I put away my dishes and wandered out of the dining room. I decided it would be a good idea to just go to bed early and do my homework in homeroom. I slipped into my comfy flannel pajama pants and a sweatshirt and dozed until the blaring sound of my alarm went off.

I swiftly put on some sweats and a t-shirt and stuffed a Slimfast bar in my pocket. I ran out the door, fetching my backpack on the way. I didn't want to be confronted by The Beast. Unfortunately, there was over an hour until school started. Well crap, I thought. I wandered over to the bench where I always went to think about things. Except this time, homework was definitely critical.

I hastily finished reading 'The Hotzone', and wrote a paragraph in French about my weekend. Luckily, they won't know it was all a complete and utter lie.

I checked the time, and it was almost 8:15. Guess I should head off to school now; it takes about half an hour to walk anyway. I'll walk in right as the bell rings, and then I won't have to worry about all those stupid social rules. No wonder I have no friends, all I ever wear is Converse and sweats, and most of these preps want you to actually attempt at your appearance. Figures.

As I sauntered into the almost empty halls, someone accidentally dropped their books and I tripped on one of them accidentally.

"Oh, sorry," I mumbled.

I looked up at the girl who bumped into me, and she was gorgeous. She had bright green eyes, the color of fresh cut grass in the spring, along with wavy chestnut hair.

"It's alright! I'm really clumsy, I fall all the time. By the way, I'm Heather," she replied.

I helped Heather pick up her books, and we ended up chatting like two long lost friends.

"I better get to class, the bell rings in less than a minute!" I told her. "Talk to you later!"

I hurried to pre-cal, my worst class. I never got any of these silly concepts. Who cares about any of this? Not me, that's for sure. Somehow, I'm managing to pass the class. Barely.

"Get to your seat, Emma. This is the last time I'm letting your tardy slip by. Next time, Tardy Table," Mr. Theckner scolded.

I sighed, and went to my chair. This wasn't going to be a good day, whatsoever. I want to just cut class and drive around, while blasting my music. Faking sick sounds pretty good right now.

Mr. Theckner went into another one of his lengthy lectures. I still can't believe I got stuck with the strictest teacher in the school with a class I'm not good at. I drifted off into my own little world, where everything is the way I want it. No abusive moms, cheating dads, strict teachers, nobody like that. Just myself and no one else.

The bell dinged, waking me up and I slowly got my stuff together and walked out. I walked out of the classroom, the school, and got into my car. My white pickup is now going to be my home, along with my bench. I didn't even think about signing out. Nobody stopped me, so I just left.

I drove around mindlessly, wasting an incredible amount of gas, and finally stopped at a not-so-local music store downtown. I'd been meaning to make it up here, but never had the guts to do it. The people here have piercings all over, along with tattoos and Mohawks, even the girls have them. It's a pretty scary site, but I felt like I almost fit in with them a little bit better now.

It was about time school was getting out, so no one questioned me about why I was out. I walked into the store on impulse. As I ambled into the store, a guy, not much taller than me, approached me. He asked if I was looking for anything in particular, and I told him not today.

I wandered around the store, picking up titles I'd never heard before, and put them right back. I finally found a CD that interested me about an hour later, called the Devil and God Are Raging Inside me, by Brand New. They seem like they have some appealing music, I supposed.

I purchased the CD, and put it into my car. I blasted the music as loud as my convertible would allow it, with the windows down. God, this feels good, I thought.

Around nine o'clock, I decided to head out to my bench. I'd been driving all day and it all seemed to just blur together. Perhaps it'll be nice for a change of scenery.

I rested on the bench, and it felt amazing, with no care in the world. No one cares about me, so why should I care about anybody else? I shouldn't, I convinced myself.

I fell into a deep slumber, and had a nightmare, a nightmare that my mom was abusive, nobody cared, and my dad was unfaithful. Everything just seemed wrong there, and started to turn black. It looked like I had blacked out in my head, even though I hadn't. It was just a stupid…nightmare…

A/N: How'd you guys like it? The first part is sort of a prologue, but with a little bit of story. Where do you think it's headed?! Any suggestions before I finalize my own ideas? Review review review! ;D If you review.... you'll even get a cookie*! :*

*cookie: Claire will send you an image of a cookie if asked, not an actual cookie. Claire wants all the actual cookies to herself! :3