1


There is nothing I hate more than a blank sheet of paper staring me in the face.

Whether it be accompanied by stilled fingers on the keyboard or a pen sticking in my mouth while I chew on it in a contemplating manner, whenever a blank sheet of paper is glaring at me (mocking me with its utterly boring nothingness), I feel an urge to desecrate it somehow. Preferably with words and random gibberish or curse words. And, if not, then I would pour ink all over it or rip it up and leave it for my brother to eat.

But I would never do that, of course. What a complete squander of trees.

Not that I have writer's block or anything (cue shudder). No. Not at all. Words are practically flowing from my fingers. I haven't lost my muse at all.

…Okay, that was a lie. I'm sitting here and I'm thinking, 'Come on, brain, think of something to write, you psycho!' but I think it's high or something because it just laughs evilly at me like 'BWAHAHAHA!' and then proceeds to bask in the excruciatingly painful whiteness of the blank sheet of paper.

Fuck you, brain.

I'm quite glad it is summer break, though, because it's four o'clock in the morning and I've been up all night. I don't quite feel like sleeping, though. I make it a habit during any school break to sleep during the day and stay up at night, writing. I'm naturally nocturnal. I'd have been an insomniac hadn't it been for the fact that I hate coffee and tea, and I can't write shit when I'm exhausted.

I prefer to write at night. Most nights, I go out to the park and I sit there and watch the sky and the trees and everything around me, or I go around for walks in town and in the neighbourhood. It's a pretty small town, and practically nothing happens here, so I know I'm safe from highly functioning sociopaths or perverted rapists. Don't tell anyone, but I'm also secretly a ninja, so I can take care of myself.

(And you think I'm joking.)

The night is beautiful, I think. Most people think of it as scary and quite ominous, but I don't think so. Beautiful things come out at night. The moon, round and gleaming, luminous and incandescent, contrasting against the darkness of the night sky; the stars, spreading across the blackness and watching over us, just as we watch them.

The night makes me wonder why some beautiful things come out when nobody's there to see them.

Besides – it's quieter. More peaceful. No older brother to annoy the crap out of you, no older sister to chatter aimlessly and squeal about her latest shag, and no dad to worry over you because you're socially deprived and couldn't care less… although I do prefer the term independent.

I'm glad they understand why I prefer to sleep during the day, though, and don't hold it against me. As much as I want to throw shoes into their faces sometimes, I do love them and they understand me. I'm quite surprised that they actually let me outside in the middle of the night, but we all know full well how nothing ever goes on, criminal-wise, in this town. At first, it was quite hard to get my dad to let me go out on my own in the dark; protective father and all that. He knows full well that our neighbourhood is perfectly safe and fine (the only people who live here are pensioners apart from us), but he relented in the end. He knows me, see. He knows how I am with my writing. They also know about my epic martial arts ninja skills, so all's well.

Again, not joking.

I sigh as I close the word document since nothing at all is coming to me – nothing new, and even nothing to make me continue my work-in-progress (a multi-chaptered story that is yet to be named) – so I shut my laptop down and decide to go to sleep.

I check the time. 04:17 am. I'm early going to bed today; usually I go to bed at nine or ten or something like that. Think of it like going to bed at nine or ten at night, except for me it's in the morning. Also, I like to see the sun rise before bed. With all the time I spend in the dark, I kind of miss it.

Ah, well. Good morning, world.


I get up at around half one in the afternoon (way too early for me) and the first thing I do is eat. With my sleeping habits changed again, my eating habits have changed, too. I usually eat something in the evening (breakfast for me, dinner for my family), and then midnight, and then late in the morning before I go to sleep.

"You're up early today," my dad remarks, not looking up from his book as I reheat the chicken. He's gotten used to all this.

"I know," I tell him in Spanish. "I was stuck last night, so I went to bed early."

"You'll pull through," he says. He then looks up at me over the frame of his glasses, his dark brown eyes sparkling like they always do. "Are you going out tonight, Vida?"

"Si," I say, my mouth full of chicken. Jeebus, I'm starving. "I need it."

"Don't be out all night," he says nonchalantly. I roll my eyes.

"I know, Papa," I sigh. "Where are Al and Esme?" Alejandro and Esmeralda, my older brother and sister, are usually gone when I'm awake (partying and whatnot.)

"Upstairs." Papa puts his book on the table and picks up the remote, flicking through the channels. "Esme is getting ready for a party tonight and Al is… being Al." He pauses and puts the remote down, settling to watch a documentary about a mother duck and her ducklings. I don't ask why they are eating cheese. "Mija, will you do something for me?"

"Si, Papa?" I sit down beside him and watch the ducks.

"I'm working tonight. Do you think you will be able to make sure that your brother and sister get home safely?"

"Papa, I'm the youngest one, remember?" I shake my head. "I'm not the one responsible for everything Al and Esme do. They're supposed to be the mature ones!"

"I know, cosita, but I don't want them to end up so drunk that they won't even be able to get home." He looks at me, pleading, and I groan. I don't want to do this. "Go by to the party whenever, just make sure they get home without causing too much trouble. Por favor?"

I curse in Spanish. "Fine."

"Watch your tongue, Vida," my dad says, giving me a firm look.

"Vida! Are you awake?" my sister calls from upstairs.

"What, Esme?" I yell back, annoyed. My chicken is starting to get cold.

"Come upstairs and help me!" she shrieks. I sigh and place my chicken on the table wistfully, silently promising to it that I'll be back. Trudging up the stairs, I deliberately go as slow as I can just to annoy her, muttering Spanish obscenities under my breath.

"So what do you think?" she asks me as soon as I walk through the door. She is standing in front of her body-length mirror, holding a dress in one hand and a different one in the other, her dirty blonde hair in their usual curls. She isn't really a natural blonde, and her hair isn't naturally curly, but she really doesn't like telling people that. Al once told someone, and Esme broke his nose.

I groan and start to walk out of the door.

"Stop right there, Vida, you haven't helped me get ready for a party since summer break started!" She glares at me accusatorily. I pause, keeping my eyes on the floor guiltily. It's kind of customary for me to help Esme get ready for any party she goes to, and I've been… neglecting my duties. Being asleep and whatnot.

I sigh and slump down on the bed, crossing my legs and stealing Esme's teddy bear to hug. I don't care much about fashion and make up and the like, and I don't pretend to. I'd much rather go out in a comfortable pair of jeans than walk around in a Gucci dress.

"Wear the red one," I say shortly. "It doesn't reveal too much, but it shows just enough to give guys a small idea. Adds to the mystery."

Hey, just because I don't care much for fashion doesn't mean I'm completely ignorant.

"You're learning," Esme laughs, discarding the other dress and proceeding to get changed. I roll my eyes.

"I'm a writer," I point out. "A writer has to have an extensive knowledge of pretty much everything."

"And a writer must also be experienced," my sister tells me as she wiggles into the dress. Her blue eyes have that evil glint to them – she's up to something. "Here." She throws me a dress, one that she hasn't worn in ears; it's a little small for her chest area. "Come with us."

"No," I say immediately. I glare at her, adamant. "Dad's already got me to make sure you two get home all fine and dandy, I don't need to chaperone you two during the party as well!"

"Vida—" Esme turns around to give me her full-on older sister death glower. I don't yield.

"No."

She tries begging. "Please!"

"No!" I snap. She opens her mouth to protest, but I cut her off. "I'll go to one of those ridiculous parties another time. Just… not tonight. I'm behind on my writing."

Esme sighs, but she doesn't go on.

"I'll hold you to that," she grumbles. "You're no fun for a little sister."

I stick my tongue out at her immaturely before jumping off the bed and heading downstairs, back to my chicken.

I'm feeling strangely optimistic about tonight.


Papa leaves for work at eight o'clock (he's a doctor), and Al and Esme leave for the party not long after.

"You coming, Vee?" Al asks, ruffling my hair. I'm curled up on the sofa, reading The Picture of Dorian Gray. I turn a page nonchalantly, making no move to fix my hair.

"Later, to make sure you haven't done anything overly stupid when you're pissed."

Al throws me a grin, his eyes – the same shade of blue that Esme has – glinting. "Don't come too late, now."

"Have fun!" I call out to them as they shut the door behind them. I feel like some sort of nanny.

Two hours later, I'm pulling my favourite plain blue hoodie on and heading outside. Even though it's summer, it's a little chilly out… But hey, that's England for you. Besides, I wouldn't want it to be too hot to the point that it's really uncomfortable. I'm used to the cold; I happen to be quite fond of it. I am from the northern part of Spain, after all, where the weather isn't as hot as others think.

It's a little early to be stopping by at the party to check on them, but believe me, it does not take long for my brother to get smashed drunk. I'm not even going to describe what happened on his prom night.

Yeah. It was that bad.

When I get to the designated house (some popular dude in my sister's year's house), I see two pairs of naked legs poking out of the bushes, and some erotic sounds are emitting from somewhere within. Some guy is vomiting on a tree with a bra in his hand and a pair of thongs on his head, and a girl's passed out on the pavement. I step over her, trying to ignore everyone else and bracing myself as I walk through the open door.

An overwhelming odour of alcohol and sweat hits me like a brick wall, and I literally stumble back. It's purely disgusting.

Suddenly, an overly warm arm slips around my neck, and someone's breathing into my ear.

"Hey, you look just like my sissss…" Al trails off with a hiss, his words slurred and his voice lazy. "D'you know her? Our little Vee? She's a nut, but we love her, don't we?"

"Okay, Al, I think you've had enough," I say gently, prying his arm off. "Let's take you home, okay? I'm sure you're tired and—"

"No way, I haven't gotten laid yet!" Al protests. Around us, people are grinding and drinking and dancing to Pitbull. I can barely see a way around the room; it's practically stuffed with people.

"Do you want a repeat of what happened the other night?" I snap. He cringes, and then shakes his head. "Besides, Al, there's always tomorrow night or any other night to get laid."

"Okay, Vee-Vee," he sighs. "Who are we getting a ride from?"

"We're walking," I say shortly. He lets out a noise of indignation.

"But Vee—"

"Al, there's nobody here sober enough to give us a ride home," I retort. "Don't be ridiculous."

"Seth will be," he grins, lazily. "Seth's always sober at these parties. He's the designated driver and stuff."

"And I also like seeing the look on people's faces when I tell them whatever they did on the previous night," a voice behind me drawls. "I happen to take pleasure in gloating at people doing stupid things."

"Ah, Sethie!" Al crows. "Look at you, sober as ever." I do look at him. I've heard about Seth; one of Al's best mates. I've never actually met him, though. He also went out with my sister, and then broke her heart. Seriously broke it. He took a hammer and then smashed her heart like glass before taking a flamethrower and burning it until there was nothing left but ashes. He was the reason that I had to spend hours and days and months trying to help my sister move on. And let me tell you, it takes a lot for my sister to love someone. Believe me, I know.

The bastard.

I could see why she liked him, though. Esme always goes after guys with heart-breaking good looks. And not just with good looks, but with brains and talent, too.

Any guy with all that is definitely dangerous. I should know – my sister found that out the hard way.

"Ah, the infamous Seth," I say curtly. "Babysit Al for a moment, I need to check on Esme."

"Don't be too long now, little Sanchez." His lip curls into a sardonic, condescending smile and my opinion of him lowers. I've only just met him and he's treating me like some little kid.

I scowl at him. "Just go take Al to the car or something." I stalk off, irritated, and feel like punching someone. I never asked to be at this stupid party, which is bordering on the lines of becoming an orgy.

Eurgh.

"Stop looking like you're about to stab someone, Vida. Be a little civilised." I only just manage to hear someone talking to me, and I turn around, trying to see the source of the words. It's Esme.

"Let's go," she sighs, looking bored and slightly disappointed.

Without another word, I try to find my way back to the exit, but Esme stops me.

"Vee, the door's the other way." She smirks a little bit. Peeved, I glower at her as she leads the way. "Are we walking?"

"Nope," I say stiffly. I refuse to tell her that Seth, of all people, is bringing us home.

"Well then, who are we getting a ride with?" Esme speaks to me as if speaking to a small child who doesn't understand what she's saying. "Everyone else has had at least a bit to drink."

I swear, I'm going to snap and go all Chuck Norris on someone if I don't get to the park in the next ten minutes. Dammit, I need to breathe. And proper, fresh summer night air, mind you, not someone's puke.

Stonily silent, I follow her to the door, squeezing through the throngs of people. I think someone may have squeezed my arse at point.

Eurgh.

I seem to be saying that a lot tonight.

I literally run out of the door once it is in my sight, and I gleefully inhale the freedom. If all parties are like this one, then I never wish to go to a party in my life. Well… not really. Of course, I'm not that ignorant. I'll attend if the person hosting it is decent enough and if I'm certain that it won't cross the line and be classed as an orgy.

"Sanchez!" Seth barks. He is leaning against the hood of a sleek, black Mercedes. I'm not sure if he's talking to Esme or me, but I hastily try to make my leave.

"Okay, well, bye!" I say to Esme, giving her a speedy hug before she could say anything about it. I then start to walk as quickly as I can.

"You're not going anywhere." Esme's voice is cold and unattached as she grabs onto my arm.

"But I have to…" I trail off feebly as her steely eyes bore through my soul. She's not angry, I realise. Just… sad. "Okay." I nod, giving her a small, melancholic smile. "Okay."

We both walk toward Seth's car, me more tentatively than Esme – which is kind of odd, considering I'm not the one who got her heart broken by him. I guess I'm kind of slightly more frightened of the awkwardness of the situation rather than him.

"Evening, ladies," Seth says coolly, opening the passenger door for one of us. I look at Esme, who I know won't sit in the front with him. I wince inwardly, until suddenly a loud retching noise erupts from the back seat.

Seth's face remains impassive and nonchalant.

I curse in Spanish, grimacing. Esme wouldn't want to sit next to a vomiting Al more than she wouldn't want to sit in the front with Seth.

Tough luck, Esme. You get the ex-boyfriend and I get our brother who's blowing chunks in the back of the aforementioned ex-boyfriend's car.

"I'll go… do whatever," I mumble, shuffling towards the door of the backseat and getting in next to Al. I'm relieved to find that he somehow found a Hollister paper bag and is now puking inside of it. There is no mess anywhere. I am less comforted to find that the smell of the inside of the car now makes me want to grab the bag from him and start regurgitating some of the chicken I ate earlier.

"Al, you're a fucking idiot," I say sweetly, patting his back as he vomits. "You really are."

I don't realise that the other two have gone into the car until we actually start moving, since I'm too busy trying not to start puking.

We all sit in stonily silence. Uncomfortable, I avoid eye contact with Esme, who is staring out the window, Seth, whose eyes are glued to the road, and Al, who has finished vomiting and decided to fall asleep.

Fifteen whole minutes of sitting in an awkward silence.

Bloody hell.

I practically run out of the door once the car stops outside our house. Unfortunately, Al is still asleep, so I end up having to literally drag him out of the car; the idiot won't wake up.

"Esme, will you please help me take Al inside?" I yell. It's too late, though, she's already inside.

I curse in Spanish and proceed to carry on dragging Al inside. I'm considering leaving him here in the front garden after I've hidden his trousers and drawn a moustache and glasses on his face when Seth calls out, "Need a help there, Sanchez?"

I ignore him. I've already reached the front door, so I just stand Al up and push him inside. He flops down on the ground in the entrance and I huff, pushing my hair back from my face.

"Bye, Esme!" I bellow, shutting the door and locking it, hitting Al with it in the process. I breathe a sigh of relief and start making my way to my beloved park.

Fucking finally.

"And where do you think you're going?" Seth drawls. "Off to rendezvous with your little boyfriend, are you? How sweet." I ignore him and carry on walking as fast as I can. I am tempted to go all ninja on his arse, but I will not be that low. I only ever physically attack when I'm physically attacked first.

I refuse to engage in a ridiculous insult-throwing with him. That's my sister's job, not mine. I remain silent. I just have a few more steps to go and his annoying little voice will be inaudible.

"It was a pleasure meeting you, little Sanchez," he calls out sardonically.

Ha.


A/N: Just a little thing that I decided to start. I think I'm going to enjoy writing about Vida and Seth. Please review and tell me what you think!