As Alexia headed upstairs with Ms. Larson and Drake behind her, she paused. Considering they both thought she was trying to escape and the lecture that she got downstairs, she knew they were going to keep their eyes on her.

"This is where we say good night," Ms. Larson said with a strict demeanor. The boys' rooms were in one direction and the girls' rooms were in another direction. She simply nodded her head.

Drake moved by them. He didn't turn around as he made his way to the his room. For some reason her blue eyes followed his movements.

Alexia heard a slight cough.

When she turned her head to the teacher, her cheeks flushed. "Aren't you going back into your room Alexia?"

She nodded.

"Also, I can't let you off the hook easily tonight. Your father will be contacted."

Instantly, she shook her head. Anything but him knowing the truth. If he did, he might remove her from the group home.

"I still have to notify him and you get detention."

Detention? Strange, Sindlewood House had such a thing?

Noticing she was looking at her sternly, she bobbed her head. She just wanted the teacher to leave her alone. She been through enough for one night. As if Ms. Larson was satisfied, she pointed to the direction of Alexia's bedroom. Hastily, the blond teenage girl walked away from her while feeling the teacher's stare on her back. Only when the blond made it into her bedroom, she switched on the light and closed the door. She leaned her back against it while taking a deep breath. There went her first day. She did get in trouble but not because of Drake. She got in trouble for being curious.

However, she learned two things tonight. One, the place was a fortress. Escape was impossible by foot. And two, she had to earn her keep.


The next day she was up by seven and Abby greeted her with a big smile on her face. The other girl was practically standing by Alexia's open doorway while wagging her eyebrows.

Sighing, The blond teenager did her morning routine before both girls headed into the hallway. Abby was chatting animatedly before changing the subject.

"So news have it that you're going to get detention," she said.

It was a good thing Alexia was holding onto the stairwell railing while going downstairs. She had to be careful since she was still limping but Abby's comment almost made her miss a step.

"It's true then? You were hanging out with Drake before getting in trouble?"

The blond shook her head. How could she tell her that he wasn't mischievous as she warned her?

"Drake is nothing but bad news. Seriously, stay clear of him and Jaydon. They're temperamental."

But then again, Alexia met Drake when he seemed to be in a good mood. If Abby was warning her to stay away from them, she was being helpful.

Alexia nodded and smiled at the other girl.

Abby's lips stretched across her pretty face. "Now let's go get some breakfast. We don't want to be late."

She grabbed Alexia's hand and pulled her into kitchen and the blond girl couldn't help thinking that it felt nice to have someone treat her like she was a friend.


Ms. Larson left her a chart with the alphabet in sign language. She had to learn all the symbols and then sign them to from "A-Z." She was left alone in a classroom. The blond girl tried to sign from "A-G" but she kept failing. Her mind didn't feel like working properly so she settled for resting her head on the table.

"You're really in here for detention?" a voice popped over her shoulder.

She jerked upward in her spot. The blond never heard someone enter the classroom, but then again the door was left open.

"And you are easy to scare," he said laughing at her jerkiness.

He reached out with a finger. Alexia jumped back. "See?" He wiggled his finger in the air.

Seeing his red hair and his extremely good looking face, she remembered Abby saying his name was Jaydon. He was the next troublemaker in the group home. Her eyes darted to the door, hoping someone else was outside.

He put the same finger to his lips. His green eyes flaring up in amusement. "Shush, you're going to have to be quiet or both of us will be here next time for detention."

Alexia shifted back from him, as far as possible the chair would allow her.

"Oh yeah, you can't talk." Jaydon seemed to remember the one thing she didn't want to him to. "Then we're going to have some fun."

He reached for the chart on her desk and lifted it into the air. Instantly, Alexia shot out of her seat, her hands reached out for the paper. Ms. Larson gave her one sheet. If he ruined it, what could she do?

He squinted at the paper. "What is this? Are you in elementary school?"

Her head fiercely moved side-to-side, her long blond hair swaying with the movement.

"So you're not?" he questioned.

All while he was taunting her, she tried to reach for the paper in his hand but he was too tall.

"If you're not in elementary school then you clearly won't be needing this." His eyebrows lifted as he shifted the chart to behind his back. She dove behind him, but he was quick to dodge. The blond girl kept moving toward him, intent on getting back her paper. He laughed at her struggle.

He was taller, larger, and he was a bully. She opened her mouth. His green eyes glinted with interest but nothing escaped her. Not a sound.

Then something changed in his eyes. They seemed to get darker, the air around him got more intimidating. He walked closer to her and suddenly getting the chart from him didn't sound like a good idea. If he wanted the paper, he could keep it.

He kept closing in, forcing her to retreat until her bottom hit the desk, stopping her. His green eyes were flashing. Was it normal for a person's eyes to flicker with color? She blinked, thinking her eyes were playing tricks on her.

"Maybe if we try hard enough, you can talk. What do you think?" He tilted his head to the side. His stare unnerved her. She wanted to bolt out of the classroom, except he was blocking the way in and out of the room.

"This is going to be fun," he finished. He stepped back and lifted his hand in the air while dangling the chart. "Until the next time we meet Alexia, I'm taking your assignment with me."

He could take it as long as he left her alone. He turned around, his hand waving the chart in the air as he strolled out of the classroom. She exhaled a breath the moment he disappeared. Unfortunately, it wasn't going be her last time dealing with him.