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Seven More Years
Mia Cary stood on her porch watching the familiar path that led from her secluded house into town. It was the same path she traveled everyday, surrounded by the same towering trees she’d climbed as a child. It was same path that, two years ago, she had watched her mother walk down, bags packed, never to return.
She’d been ten years old at the time. She’d begged her mother to stay. Her mother had been flighty at best, she was always leaving. But always returning.
Two years was a long time. Mia doubted her mother would ever really return. But she could always hope, right?
But why even bother? It wasn’t like her mother made things better. Her father was still drunk, regardless of whether or not her mother was around. It matter who else was there to try and appease him, he was still an angry drunk.
Then, as if on cue, he called her, “Mia! Mia, where are you?”
Mia took one last glance at the path before she bolted into the crumbling house. The building creaked with every step she took, she sidestepped the holes where footsteps had broken the rotting wood. She found her father sprawled across the sofa in the living room. A empty bottle of alcohol dangled from his fingers.
“I’m empty,” Mia dutifully retrieved the empty bottle and went to the kitchen to find another. Vermin crawled over the floors and counters, eating away at the food, crumbs, and filth that had been left out. She rifled through the cupboards, they were mostly bare, aside from a few creatures. But nothing for her father to drink.
“We’re out,” she told him. He let out an annoyed grunt.
“Well then, go get me some won’t you?”
“I’m twelve, I can’t buy alcohol. But we’re also out of food. I could go out and-”
“Fine go, take the money. Just leave me alone if you’re not going to be useful.”
“Gee, thanks,” Mia huffed before taking off. She loved getting out of the house. Most days, she spent most of her time in the surrounding trees, dreaming of a better life. Her plan was to leave for Los Angeles the second she turned eighteen; she wanted to find her sister. Her parents had sent her to Los Angeles shortly before Mia had ben born. The two had never met, but Mia was sure that this stranger was better than her father.
Seven more years. Mia was a long way from happiness.