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Derek sat behind me. He was just a kid though. He had no clue what life is like, and how much pain it could bring. I was no kid. I may only be fifteen years of age on the outside, but my heart, brain, and soul. They are well over 30. I always listen to Derek talk, it gives me amusement in our final period. I don't bother to listen in school. I have no need to do anything. Let me fail, I don't do anything right anyways.
"So I talked to my old man the other day. For, like, a curfew extension. But he wouldn't budge. I mean seriously! I can't stay out past 10:00pm. He's the worse." Derek complains. I turned towards Derek hoping he would just shut up. He didn't though, but I managed to get him out of my mind. I laid my head on the desk. Someday I'll slug him I promised to myself. That'll teach him not to be such a selfish jerk. Why did kids like him get such good fortune?
The bell rang as I got up to go to my locker. I grabbed the binder on my desk. It wasn't mine. Cass, my only friend, gave it to me. I think she knew more about my life then she says. I reached the door to see her face. "Bye." She stared into my eyes looking longingly for answers. I gave her a faint smile; it was all that I could force. Walking past her I caught a glance at her face. She gave me a look that said 'maybe one day will you tell me everything?' I knew the answer to that question on her face. No, I never will be able to. It's something I'll never share.
I grabbed my backpack. And threw my binder in. My locker was empty other than a math book. I had nothing. I didn't need any thing though, dad says I'll never amount to anything anyway. I shoved my locker shut behind me and walked away. I used to care about not having everything, but now I just want food. I used to crave attention, but all the attention I get is yelling. I'd rather not bother with the pain.
I stepped onto my bus, and walked to my seat. Seat 12; all the way in the back. No one comes near me because I'm weird. I don't mind. I like it away from the annoying buzz of selfish kids. Thats the reason I like Cass. She is selfless. She actually cares about others more than herself. The bus ride is short, and as it comes to an end, I find myself slinking down lower and lower into the seat. I don't want to get off and face my dad. I'd rather live on this bus.
It takes all of my courage to stand and walk off of the haven, and onto my street. I stepped off the bus and began walking to my house. I turned around to face it, but it was already gone. There was my last safe zone, and it left me to stand the night. I walked slowly to my house. I tried to imagine what a normal house is like. Maybe the family eats dinner together. Dad hasn't fed me, nor Kate, in over a week. We are left to survive by ourselves. "Dad?" I said tentatively as I open the front door. I listened for a response, but I got none. I let out a sigh of relief. Dad was passed out cold.
I walked to the pantry cautious to stay in the shadows. In my house you could never be too careful. I walked into the pantry. I let out a sudden gasp of shock. It was empty; there was not even a can of peas. Dad must have cleaned it out as a punishment to me and Kate. Why couldn't he just ground us? I would take that over starving any day.
I grabbed my dad's coat, and got ready to go 'shopping.' Just as I was about to leave I slipped the white paper with a star in the window. It was for Kate. We had color codes. Red was danger. It meant get help, and never to come back. Blue meant to go to a friends house. The thought was that dad was angry and drunk. White was I'm gone. If it had a star on it, then I was at the store. If it was just a white paper; I hadn't come home from school.
The outside air was chilly. I walked to the market. It was over-priced, so Kate and I could never afford it. That didn't matter, I had other plans in mind. I browsed the aisle's. Slipping bread and fruit into dad's jacket. Then I walked out looking casual, or trying to at least. When I got outside I ran the rest of the way home. I couldn't afford to be caught. They would ask why I stole food, and I would have to tell them. They would get Dad in trouble, then separate me and Kate. That was something I wouldn't be able to deal with.
The cold atmosphere hit me as I walked into the house. I inhaled the smell of Beer and puke. It made me sick to my stomach by the time I finally reached the room. I stuffed half the food under the bed, then set up the rest of it for a feast. Kate walked into the room cleanly showered.
"Hey." Her voice was raspy and unclear. She still had that bad cold.
"Lets eat," I nodded to the food.
"A feast? What's the occasion?"
"I was hungry, no doubt you are too?"
"Of course, aren't we always?"
I sat down to eat, and that ended our conversation. We stuffed our face, and never said a word. We don't talk much. We are too focused on living. We take day by day; eating what we have, when we have it. It's all about surviving.
Feeling content, I got ready for bed. Kate was already asleep on the mattress. She looked so peaceful and happy. I wish she always looked like this. Her face was glowing, and her breaths were even. I slipped into bed next to her. She was breathing softly in my ear, and I liked it. It's like a rhythmic drum putting me to sleep.
While I closed my eyes, I smiled to myself. I felt like I was going to explode. It was the best feeling I have felt since before I can remember. I was so full. Lately I am so used to the gnawing at my stomach, that when the pain stops it feels like heaven. I wish this moment of peace and comfort could go on forever, but everything ends at one point.
I usually love mornings on the bus for two reason. First, it brings me to school; which is another safe haven. Also, everyone is tired and I can breathe, and think easily, but thinking can be dangerous for me. While I love thinking of the future, when I think of the past it brings pain and tears. Tears force me to wipe my eyes, and there I feel the scar from Dad's belt. It brings back memories about the days I can hardly remember. The only thing that proves the pain I went through is all the scars. I have them all around my body. It's like they don't want to be forgotten. I wish they'd disappear.
Our bus was late to school, and I had about a minute to get to class. It didn't matter though. I put my backpack in my locker, then arrived at class . Taking my seat next to Derek I sighed. It was time to learn Derek's awful life. Quickly, he started complaining. What a child! Thats all he ever did. Hasn't he ever heard of being grateful?
"I have a new curfew. It's horrible, man! 8 o'clock. My parents just have their mind set on ruining my life!" Derek waited for a response from his friend. I said something before I could stop myself.
"Derek. Just shut up! Your life is not horrible. You get dinner every night. You have more then 5 shirts. The only chore you have is cleaning your room! Yeah your parents gave you a curfew! Get over it! At least your parents want you home every night. My dad doesn't care. It would be easier if i was dead! I would trade life's with you any day." I was almost screaming. Noting this, I lowered my voice. "You have it easy. I hope you know that." When I finished; Derek was gaping at me. I just turned around not waiting for a response. Life isn't about waiting, it's about being prepared and surviving.