Chapter 1

Kristy

I was running. The colorful trees that had seemed so comforting before, now threatened to abduct me with their gnarled branches. My breath came in short gasps, and behind me I heard a mocking laugh. It seemed to screech through my skull and I collapsed in agony. I looked up to see the cause of my pain.

"Dad!" I said in a hushed voice, and then came the screaming. It started as a deep rumble in my chest, and then slowly found its way into the open air. I yelled in a failed attempt to be saved, but no one came to my rescue. No one would ever come my rescue. This was it. This was how it would end.

A soft beeping started in my head. I'm already losing it I thought. That's when I realized it was my annoying alarm clock waking me up for school.

I groaned and shut it off. Normally I would be ticked off but that devilish device had saved me from one of my most horrid dreams. Ever since my dad and mom divorced, I've had terrible dreams about how in his rage he would come back for revenge.

I shuddered at the thought off my once loving father standing over me with hate in his eyes, knife in hand.

I forced myself out of the comfort of my bed, and slowly made my way over to my closet to get dressed for school. "Kristy! Get your butt downstairs!" A sigh escaped my lips. My mom was in a bad mode, again. Welcome to my life.

It was the first day of school. What a waste of time, and that's not all. It was a new school. I threw on a baggy t-shirt and a pair of jeans that were ripped at the knees. I looked at myself in the mirror. In my head I imagined one of those super cheesy announcer voices. It's the new fashion! She just doesn't give a crap!

With a laugh I brushed out my dirty blond hair and threw on some make-up. Oh, if only I had a best friend to share my humor with. With a deep sigh I slipped on my usual flip flops with sea blue straps and lugged myself downstairs.

I sat on one of the comfy barstools facing our island and shoved some tasteless cereal into my mouth. How mindless. I heard the familiar light patter of footsteps as my mom came around the bend from the living room.

"Hi Honey!" She chirped. Then she took in my "I don't give a crap" outfit. The disproval was evident in her eyes. We stood there for a while. Me, daring her to say something first, and her, hesitating but wanting ever so badly to send me back to my room to change into something nicer. Not. Happening.

Sometimes I think my mom's bipolar. Just a minute ago she was yelling at me to move faster and now she's entering the room with a smile only to frown yet again.

Before she could make up her mind I saw the clock.

"Mom! We're gonna be late!"

She giggled. "Oops!"

I grabbed my bag, slung it over my shoulder, and hopped in our big red truck. I sat fidgeting in my seat until my mom finally got in the car.

We drove in silence. I turned my back to her and watched the lush green trees pass in a cloud like blur. Too soon, I noticed the big white building that I assumed to be my new school. I kissed my mom on the cheek and offered her a small smile as I prepared myself for the torture to begin.

I walked up to the entrance and took a deep breath before opening the doors to a new life.