A/N: Now, I know there has to be someone reading this, and it would be really nice to get some feedback. Negative or positive. I would just appreciate something. Please, and thank you. Here's my next chapter. Enjoy!

When I peeped through the peep hole, I saw an extremely official looking woman standing there. She had a briefcase and a suit on. She made me extremely nervous.

I looked over at the closet Matt was hiding in and took a deep breath. I put on my best smile and opened the door.

"Hi, may I help you?" I asked in my politest tone.

"Yes, Ms. Richardson? That is, if it was truly your father who was just taken away by the paramedics", she said glancing around behind me.

I stepped outside and closed the door. "Yes, that was my dad. Why do you ask?" I said folding my arms across my chest.

She backed up a step and replied, "I'm very sorry to inform you of this, but your father has passed away."

I got a dizzying wave of nausea hit me full-force, and I sat down on the concrete step. "Are you sure?" I asked in a daze.

She frowned down at me, increasing the worry lines on her forehead, just underneath where her deep brown hair, which fell down to her shoulders in cascades of shiny ringlets, came to a widow's peak. Her shockingly blue eyes searched my face, as if she was looking for something. Maybe she thought something was wrong with me. At this point, I couldn't bring myself to care. "Yes, we're absolutely sure. Do you have any other family to speak of?"

I pulled my knees to my chest and hugged them. Shrugging my shoulders, I replied "I'm not sure. I don't think so."

She sat down next to me. "Adena, your father's BAC was dangerously high. Is there anything you need to talk about?" she asked, clearly trying her hardest to look caring and sincere.

I hardened and threw up a wall at once. I abruptly stood and faced her. "No, thank you. I'm all set. You can see your way out." I said, completely forgetting we were outside. I turned around into the house, and slammed the door behind me. Before I could even step away from it, she pounded on the door again. "Adena, you can't live here by yourself! You need parental guidance!"

"I've been doing fine without that since I was six, thank you very much" I muttered to myself.

"Legally, you can't stay here! If you don't find somewhere to go, we're putting you in foster care!"

This stopped me in my tracks. I'd been just about to let Matt out of his closet hiding place, until she said those words. I walked slowly back to the door, opened it a crack, and peeked my head out.

"What do you mean?" I asked carefully. I wasn't about to get caught up in this government bull.

"According to state law, if you're living without a parent or guardian over the age of 18, then Child Protective Services has to put you in either a new home or an orphanage. I'm sorry, those are the rules."

Just because they were the rules, didn't mean I was going to listen to them, but I wasn't about to tell her that. "So, if I have some family, then I go to live with them?"

"That's the deal. If we haven't found anyone in three days, we have no choice but to send you away."

I furrowed my eyebrows. "Alright, I'll get to work", I said closing the door.

She stuck the point of her fancy, high-heeled shoe into the opening. "Adena?"

I sighed at peered out the door again. "Yes?"

"We don't do this to anger you. We're only trying to help."

I chuckled a little bit. "Of course you are. Have a good day, Madame." I shut the door on her gapping face.

I rested my head against the door frame, and pulled my dark hair back into a pony tail. I took a few deep breaths, and practically bounced off Matt, who was standing closely behind me.

I jumped back and cried out. "You scared the crap out of me, Matt!" I said swatting his shoulder like he was some annoying mosquito.

He laughed and stepped out of the way "After you"; he said bowing deeply and gesturing towards the kitchen.

"Thank you" I replied in the snobbiest voice I could manage. I marched toward the kitchen and sat at the little table. It was so clean, we could have been in a laboratory under a microscope, and they wouldn't have found a speck of dust. All thanks to me.

"What am I going to do Matt? This is the only house I've ever known! It hasn't exactly been stable, but it's always been here. This is all I've ever known." I said letting my head fall to the table. I could feel Matt's eyes scanning me. He had a funny way of doing that sometimes.

"I'm not sure. I don't want you to leave, but at this point, I don't think we have much of an option." His voice was forlorn. I peeked out at him to see his eyes were clouded and miserable. He placed a rough hand on my back and rubbed it.

I sighed, and I felt my stomach. Matt must have heard it, for he started laughing. "Maybe it's time to eat?"

"I'm thinking so", I said laughing at myself. I got up and prepared supper for myself. Matt wasn't eating, so I just made some macaroni-and-cheese. It was warm and gooey.

When dinner was finished, I cleaned up as I normally do. When the dishes were washed, and everything was put back in place in our magazine-ready house, I put up my apron and hopped in the shower. Matt respectfully waited in my room for me to finish. I took my dear sweet time, without having to worry about my dad coming in and grabbing me out of my shower and throwing me to the ground, just to tell me how worthless I am to the world. At least, that's what I thought.

I was rinsing out my hair and inhaling the intoxicating fumes, when I felt a pair of rough, calloused hands grabbed me and snatched me out of my luxurious shower. I screamed and fell to the floor. I grabbed the towel off the toilet, and I stood up. I waved my hand out in front of me. I didn't feel anything. I went to drop my cover to resume my shower, when I glanced in the fogged up mirror. It read "you can't get rid of me that quickly!" Suddenly, a shadow formed near the equally-as-fogged-up window.I screamed again. I slipped and thought I was going to hit the hard tile when, all of a sudden, hands gripped my back and pulled me up. I was smothered in a tight embrace. I tried hitting and kicking, but I couldn't break free. I started screaming.

"Matt!" I screamed for help. "Matt!"

"I'm here Jessie! I'm with you! Please, calm down!" said a voice about a foot above me.

I abruptly stopped struggling. I looked up and saw Matt's tanned face and eccentric blue eyes through the steam. I collapsed. I fell to the tiled floor in a huge heap. I felt Matt kneel down next to me. He rubbed my shoulder and kissed my forehead. He wiped my cheek and gave me a small smile. I hadn't even realized I was crying. He got up and shut off the smoldering shower. I just sat there. He came back and sat next to me. He pulled me onto his lap and rocked me back and forth. He stroked my dripping hair and held me. I sobbed onto his shirt. After I was completely sobbed out, I looked up at him. He was staring at me intently. He smiled and kissed my forehead again. I stood up and pulled him put with me. I gave him a huge hug. He wrapped his arms around my waist and held me tightly again. I chortled a little into his shoulder.

"I still have conditioner in my hair!" I whined, grabbing at the chunks that were stuck together from dried soap.

He laughed. "Maybe you should finish your shower?"

"Yeah, I'll do that…but what if he comes back?"

He gave me somewhat of a puzzled look, but he replied, "I can stay in here if you need me to, if you're comfortable with that."

I just looked at him. "It's hard to be uncomfortable around you, honestly. Alright, well I'm getting back in now."

I stepped back into the shower and shut the curtain. Then, I pulled off my towel and resumed my shower.

When I had gotten all dried off, I stepped out of my dad's bathroom with a cloud of steam billowing out after me. A frigid air engulfed me the moment I opened the door. It really hit me how much I hate surprises when I saw the scene in front of me.