The way she survives is beautiful. She brings all her friends close, and they build a shield for her, made with duct tape, chocolate, quotes, and guitars; make up fills the cracks and the smell of Axe covered, borrowed jackets surrounds her as her friends waltz her by. They become better than her family- her 'brothers' inform her Ex in a vulgar English what he can go do with himself and she overhears, laughing for the first time in days, and her 'sister' put together outfits and playlists; bring over chocolate and let her rant for hours. They hold her together with the shield they made, and on nights were her Ex's words swirl in her head, tare down her defenses, they come to her, hold her as she closes her eyes and falls forward, knowing her family will catch her. She gives them her crushed dreams, and they sweep her dreams in a pile and piece them back together with gorilla glue as she talks- her voice is wet, and it's just ridicules how much one person can hurt their little sister (non ones quit sure when they start thinking of her as theirs, but it doesn't matter- she's theirs, not her ex's, not her flesh and blood family, and they don't care who knows it.). She falls asleep in a pile of second-hand heat; her dreams are restless and a fresh wave of hatred for him sweeps over her family because this. is. Wrong.

Her ex comes back for her, and he stands her ground, because she's older now than shes ever been, and she's walked this road too often to be crushed – she wasn't a toy, and she was defiantly was not a doormat.