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Detention. It was a word Charlie Ackerson was used to hearing. This time, he had been caught trying to shove an exchange student into a locker. The kid had been cursing at Charlie in Spanish.
            The detention teacher, Mr. Renzo, didn’t even look up at Charlie when he walked into the room. He just groaned and said “Welcome back, Charlie. I didn’t see you for a whole 24 hours.”
            Charlie spent the entire time staring at the clock, as usual. At some point, though, Mr. Renzo got up to use the restroom. This was his chance.
             He crept up to the desk, grabbed Mr. Renzo’s wallet, and snatched a 20 dollar bill inside. He didn’t get caught, of course. He never got caught.

            The first thing Charlie did when he left the school was light up a cigarette. He only had 2 left in his pack so he would have to find a way to get more. Being 16, he wasn’t legally allowed to buy cigarettes, so he put on his hoodie so he looked more like the guy in the picture of a fake ID that he had stolen. The cigarettes would cost him $7, so he would have $13 left to spend on dinner.
Charlie wasn’t always addicted to cigarettes. His mom, Rose Ackerson, was very much against children smoking. But since she had been diagnosed with breast cancer last year, Charlie had mostly been on his own. The smoke from those cigarettes made him feel dizzy and left him in a dream-like state, which made it easy to forget his problems. It made him forget that his mother was going to die soon.
So Charlie spent most of his time in the streets, smoking and stealing. The hospital bills were adding up. Charlie’s single aunt, Aunt Maura, was supposed to take care of him while his mom was at the hospital, but she didn’t. Charlie was alone. But he didn’t care. He didn’t care. Or at least, that’s what he told himself.

Chapters:   1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 11 Next »

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