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Sola Gratia

I looked out the broken window pane, the image distorted by the deep cracks in the ancient glass. Outside the world was blanketed by a white sheet of snow, making the earth look innocent and pure. I closed my watery brown eyes and put my head up against the old wood windowsill. The old wooden floorboards beneath me creaked of old age, telling a story of what happened within those old, wallpapered walls with every squeak.
"Jade," An old, used voice called from the doorframe. I turned to look at who spoke, and in the frame stood an old woman with deep wrinkles and set back features. She wore old, worn in jeans and a floral blouse. She stared at me with her steel, blue-gray eyes. I turned my thin, pink lips into a frown. What was I doing here? This wasn't my home. This was just a nightmare...
"Yeah?" I replied in a hoarse whisper.
"Mrs. Graham would like to see you. She wants to make sure you're doing okay here." The old woman said. She paused to stare at me for another moment and then walked away, the floorboard squeaks echoing down the hall.
I started down the hall, then down the red, plush carpeted stairs to Mrs. Graham's office. I walked into the small den, the smell of food permeating the room. I sat in the worn in leather chair. Mrs. Graham sat in front of me, her blond hair pulled into a tight bun and her eyes boring into mine.
"So, how are you enjoying being a ward of the state of Ohio?" She asked with a tight-lipped smile. I winced at the term. Ward of the State. It sounded like I was less of a person and more of an object, even more of a reason to believe no one wanted to me.
To explain my whole story, or to sum it up in the least, I am an orphan. I have never had any family besides my parents, and recently they had died, killed in a car accident on the highway. With no godparents or relatives, I ended up here, in this stupid orphanage. Honestly, before my parents were killed, I didn't even know orphanages still existed, as self-centered and stupid as it makes me sound.
"Wonderful. I'm loving what you guys have done with the place," I said in a sarcastically rude way. Mrs. Graham may have picked up on it, but you wouldn't be able to tell if she did or didn't, her face stayed completely straight.
"Miss Bridgeman, here at Sola Gratia Orphanage, we don't tolerate such snide comments, so if you would like to stay here until you're eighteen, I suggest you change your attitude quickly. We are not here to harm you or isolate you from the outside world, but if you let yourself think such things, you might find yourself being very, very upset for the remainder of the years you will be residing here."
I maintained my cool composure, resisting the urge to roll my eyes. "No offense, but isn't it kind of stupid to not let me go outside the land that you guys own?"
"Now, honestly, do you really believe that's a good option to offer? How many people do you think would try to run off?" She responded quickly.
"True."
For the next fifteen minutes, I was forced to sit in the chair and talk about how my transition was going, and as soon as she said I was free to go back to my room, I exhaled and quickly walked outside of her room.
"Jade," Mrs. Graham called from her room. I rolled my eyes and walked back.
"What?"
"If you ever need to talk, I'm here for you." She replied, organizing some papers. I nodded and started off towards my room



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