Chapter One

I waded into the deep water until it sunk up to my knees, making my green dress flow up in a cloud of color around me.


I turned to see my mother standing on the porch.

"Get out of that water this instant or I will hit you so hard you won't sit down for a week!" she shrieked.

I sighed and pulled up my skirt wading back out of the water. Shiver tingled up my body as the cool night air hit my wet legs as I ran up to the house. As I stepped inside my mother turned to me, her face reddening with anger.

"Lilian, what did I tell you about going in the pond?"

She said in a voice calm, yet angry.

"That I shouldn't" I answered

"And why is that?" She said in the same calm voice

"Because that's how father died"

I said meekly, I wanted nothing more than to run from the room and hide, but if I did she would find me and beat me all the more.

"So why did you go in it?" she said slowly now as if I was an idiot.

"Because, it felt good against my skin in this hot weather

I answered truthfully. It did, that's why I loved it so much.

Now her face grew Angry again, I stepped back towards the wall and tried to make myself as small as possible. She walked forward and grabbed me by the wrist and yanked me forward, filling my face with her horrid breath.

"Do you want to know something that feels good against your skin?"

She asked in that same calm voice. I shook my head and tried to back further into the wall if I could.

"Good" she snarled "Because you aren't going to"

With that she grabbed a fistful of my hair and yanked me behind her.

I let out an anguished yelp which caused her to turn and kick me hard in the ribs.

I gripped at anything and flailed around, anything I could do to pull myself away from this monster. But it was no use. She pulled me back around in front of her and shoved me down the basement stairs.

I lay in a bruised heap at the bottom of them and looked up at her fearfully.

"You will sleep down there, eat down there, and relieve yourself down there, you will never leave this room except to wait on me and your sisters"

She took a deep breath

"And you will never even speak of your mother and father again"

With that she slammed the door, leaving me in total darkness.

Did I mention she was my stepmother?