Max had allowed herself to cry when she heard South breathing steadily like he was sleeping, she been about to sleep afterc rying and rocking when South screamed. Max shot straigh up and sat staring at South's bed for a few moments. Last time she'd heard someone scream like thatw as tehc ar wreck, Mase had scareamed and she ahd screamed just before they'd flown off the road.
Max gritted her teeth,s he wans't going to go over and tehre and see if he was OK, that would just seem like she cared, which she didn't, she didn't want to she hated this boy who was replacing her brother.
Mr. Sire rushed into the room and flicked the light on,
"What's wrong?" he asked, looking around. Max ducked her head hide she'd beenc rying.
South sat shaking on the bed, gripping the blanket tightly. "Nothing sir, s-sorry sir..." He mumbled, trying to hide in the blankets.
Max flopped back in her bed and glared at the wall again, ger stepfather could handle this she guessed.
"Alirght." Mr. Sire said, he quickly looked around again to make sure everything was OK and then he shut the lights out so only the Christmas lights were glowing,
"Max can take these down if you need, South, sleep well chidlren." Mr. Sire siad ebfore leaving and shutting the door behind him.
South laid there silently for a moment, listening for Mr. Sire's footsteps to fade.
As soon as he was certain that he was gone, he quietly started to climb out of bed.
Max was awake and she heard South climb out of bed and sighed inwardly, she wante dto sleep, but guesssed she wouldn't be able too. Max sat up, bring her knees to her chest she wrapped her arms around them and watched South, her hair flopped in her eyes, partially hiding the fact she'd been crying, under the Christmas lights it'd be hard to tell anyway.
South moved cautiously to the door, heading to the bathroom to wash his face and have a drink of water.
Possibly to cry in the safety of the bathroom walls.
Max watched South until he left the room then she lay back down, she didn't know where he was going but when the room was empty she satrted to rock and cry softly, hoping to get to sleep soon. She had her arlam set for 4:00 that's when she ha dto get up to start her chores, she had teh heaviest load of chores amoung the children becuase she was the oldest. They also had school tomorrow so Max would have to do her morning chores, go to school, coem back do her evening chores and homework. Tomorrow like most days was going to very busy and full of hard work for Max.
South hid in the bathroom for a while. He cried quietly as he looked in the mirror, facing the memories that haunted and terrorized him at night, in the dark.
He splashed cold water on his face to try and make himself stop crying so he could go back to sleep. But he knew it was futile. Sleep wouldn't come easily to him tonight, not after those dreams. Those memories.
((Go ahead. :) ))
Max slammed her hand down to turn her alarm off. She got out of bed, putting on a set of socks and work boots she grabbed a short sleeved plaid button up and threw it on over her t-shirt. She glanced around the room to make sur enothing had changed. Her mother or soemone had delivered a stack of clothes for South earlier that mroning. Theyw ere mostly jeans, shorts, t-shirts, polos, a couple button up tops. She recognized some of Mase's old clothes and some of her stepfather's. ALso sitting next to the cahir with theclothes on it was a set of work boots, they were brand new almost, she recognized them as the enw set of boots Mase had been given for his birthday a week before he died.
Max left the room. She wentd own satirs and satred a load of laundry. Her mother had gone and collected the eggs already it seemed, her stepfather was in the kitchen talking her mother and drinking coffee. Max went back upsatirs to get South so she could go do her outside chores. She steppe dinto the room and flicke dthe light switch on, she unplugged teh Christmas lights. and waited for South to get up.
South was already up, quietly dressed in his faded clothes, a long sleeved shirt and battered up jeans.
He was just putting all his earrings back in.
"You'll want to wear those." Max said coldly pointing to the stack of new clothes or reletively new clothes, she grabbed a set of jeans a t-shirt and threw them at his feet, adding a plaid shirt seeing as he didn't seem to liek short sleeves,
"What you're wearing will be destroyed with our work." she said, her voice still rather cold. She turned and went back dpwn stairs to wait for him to come down.
South flinched with the coldness in Max's voice. The edge to it made him nervous, it made him cautious of her, staying out of her reach. Even though she was smaller than him, there were still ways she could hurt him, and he didn't want to take chances.
So very quickly and quietly, he changed his clothes, just so she wouldn't be angry with him.
As he finished dressing, he ran a hand through his brightly colored hair, combing it lightly with his fingers and drawing down in his face to cover his eyes.
Max waited impatiently at the bottom of the stairs waiting for South to come down.
"Maxine!"" her stepfather called, she glared at him, Max actually hated being called Maxine,s he prefered Max but her mother and step father insisted on calling her Maxine.
"You need to get out to the sheep and such." Amos told her as he went up to get he young boys, who had been begging to help with the watering system for a long time now.
"Where's South?' he asked,
"Changing." Max said stiffly Amos nodded, he went down the hall to Ramsey adn Uriah's room to get the boys up.
Finally, South carefully started down the stairs. He looked awkward and out of place in the clothes, but he always had a tendency to look awkward and out of place.
He peeked up through his hair, glancing up to see Max. He shoved his big hands in the pockets, shifting nervously as he moved to stand in front of her.
He stood ready for her to tell him what to do, staying out of arm's reach of her.
Max didn't say anything she justed walked out to the garage, not even checking if he was following. She grabbed a wheel barrow and two pitchforks and two shovels. Putting them in the wheel barrow she headed out across the pastures towards the goat and sheep barn. She moved at a quick pace wanting to get this over. Dew covered the grass and mistwas over the fields. The sun ahdn't even risen yet.
He followed nervously, staying a safe distance away, but at the same time making sure he didn't lag behind.
Max stopped at the sheep and goat barn,
"We'll let the aniamls out and then clean it." was all she siad,
"And get new hay." she added. About once one-two weeks they cleane dteh barn out, straw could be very expensive so they didn't change it every day, especially since they didn't nee dto change it everyday.
He nodded quietly, carefully reaching for a pitchfork.
He didn't know how to clean a barn, but he didn't ask. Keeping quiet and keeping his head down, just wanting to hurry this along.
Max let sheep and goats out. She then grabbed a pitchfork and satrted to fill the wheel barrel with filthy hay. The barn was a mess and smelled awful. She just kept lifting the dirty hay into the wheel barrel and glanced at South,
"Well, are you going to help?" she asked, she didn't want to have to do all the work on her own and just have South watch. If he wans't going to help then he could just go back to bed for all she cared.