D Davis


Disclaimers: These characters are mine. Any resemblances to real or fictional people is not intended
Violence disclaimer: This story depicts scenes of violence and/or their aftermath. Bit more graphic than usual. This story also depicts rape and sexual violence and its after effects
Subtext: Yes it is of this nature. If this bothers you, please go away
Feedback: As this is my first attempt at fiction, Feedback is welcome. Please send it to: Liselle90@yahoo.com

A thin breeze brushed over the surface of the water as it wound around a young woman, illuminated by a crescent moon. From somewhere in the distance, a sea gull cried. The woman wore only her nightshirt and sandals, and her hair, loose and blond, was pulled back loosely by a ribbon. She walked along the seashore, loss welling up in her heart. It was just a year ago. Funny, how it only took a year for everything to become so wrong. Looking at the waves crashing at her feet, she laughed bitterly to herself. Everyone/everything she had loved was gone. She just felt emptiness. Emptiness like nothing else she had ever felt before.

Ainjel felt the first traces of tears shimmer forth, as she stared into the darkness. The waves of the sea pulled at her, edging her forth. All she wanted was release, a way out of this despair that had taken her. Feeling a tear slowly trickle down her face she thought of her past life. How her parents would love to see her now, after all they hated her, didn't they? She slowly took out the switchblade that she had found in her brother's room. Maybe she should give them what they wanted. All she wanted now was nothing, release from this dismal existence. Slowly, ever so slowly she brought the blade back. I am nothing but a disgusting creature. I deserve this - I deserved to die! Is that not what her mother told her before she turned her back.

The blade arched further back as Ainjel felt consumed by her bitterness, her loss. Tears plastering her face, she let the rage and bitterness control her. She would give them all what they wanted, she would plunge it in her heart.

“AINJEL NOOO!” someone screamed as the darkness consumed her.

1989 – Nicholson, Georgia

was coming home. Finally, after 10 years, I was coming back. I sat in the car watching the scenery go by. Everywhere around me, trees. I was not happy about coming here. I did not like the trees either. In fact, I did not like anything about this place. I missed Atlanta. I missed my old friends and the city life. Yet, here I was, watching the trees flying by. I looked at the driver, Mr. Lorne. He was my mother's husband.

My mother had married Mr. Lorne after my father's death. I remember him always being the tall strict man that now drove in the front seat. He was a good six foot five inches tall. He always wore his dark brown hair parted to the side, a receding hairline near his forehead. He had a narrow chin and dark brown eyes. He always wore dark black pin striped suites, reminding me of a mortician. I don't think he ever smiles, laughs, or understands the concept of fun. What could my mother have ever seen in him? He was always aloof, never involving himself in my life or anyone else's. I did not know him. Throughout the eight years of their marriage, I maybe saw him five times. Mother said the reason he did not come with her on her occasional visits was because he was always busy with his cases. Mr. Lorne worked at Lorne and associates day and night. There was always seemed to be a case he was working on. This suited my mother just fine, as she had the days to do whatever she wanted to do. Not to mention, she also had his money to spend however she wanted to spend. Cynically, I wondered what mother had to do to even get him to pick me up. It must have been an ordeal for him. I laughed at the thought

I never understood why I had to leave. My mother had told me it was because I “lost it” after my father died. She said that they tried everything, but I just never recovered. To make matters worse for her, she found out she was pregnant with my brother, Gregory. So she had the stress of my father's death, a little girl who screamed day and night, and the ever-coming morning sickness that came with being pregnant. She could not handle the stress or give me the time I needed. My grandmother told her it would be best if I left and came to stay with her. My mother readily agreed to this, coming to visit me on the occasional weekend. Maybe being a mother was too tough on her. Maybe she wanted more time on her own. I don't know, what I do know is I lived the remaining nine years with my grandmother.

I do not remember much of my time living in Nicholson, living in the neighborhood my mother lived in, and still does to this day. I remembered my father, how much I loved him. We would always do things together such as hunting, fishing, and other things. Ah, hunting, I remembered ruefully.

We had gone to a friend of the family's, Mr. Green. Side by side, we walked along the trails of Mr. Green's. Tall oak trees loomed above us, so tall to a girl my age. I remembered thinking I was being swallowed up in them. Finally after walking a good twenty minutes, we arrived at the spot.

“Ainjel,” He had said. “Now I want you to stand here and remember to keep quiet. We don't want to scare away the deer.”

I was so excited - I had taken the toy gun I received for Christmas. I nodded my head eagerly taking out my gun. I didn't know what hunting involved, as it was my first time. I just knew I was with my father, and I was so excited. We waited for what seemed like hours, when I finally saw it.

A beautiful deer came trotting up the path. I saw my father get out his gun, and then it hit my little mind. He is going to kill the deer. It would be like killing Bambi. This was wrong!

“Daddy, you can't do it. You just cant do it!” I cried, tears streaming down my face.
“Ainjel, hon., its ok. All we are doing is hunting a few deer. I need you to hush”

“No daddy you cant do it!” I cried.

The deer must have heard something, because it looked in our direction. I was so scared and upset. How could daddy do this! I could not bear to let this happen! I started screaming, jumping up and down, and making noises with the gun. This gave me the desired effect; the deer got spooked and ran. Needless to say, the hunting was a one-time experience. Most of the time, my father and I were fishing.

He used to take me to the movies when my mother would not. I remembered nights of him carrying me to the car, asleep in his arms. I felt tears threaten my eyes. It had been a long time since his death, but I still missed him. He was my best friend and everything to me. At the age of five, he was my hero. Now, I just remember him with regret.

So, my father died and I was rushed off to live with my grandmother, my father's mother. They thought it best, as my mother could not cope with me. I do not remember much of anything during that time. I don't remember any “screaming” and “crying”. Yet, my mother says I was uncontrollable, and she could not handle me. Isn't it funny, dear mother that my Grandmother could?

Thinking of my grandmother, I felt my eyes sting. I had cried so much this last week - I didn't think I would have any tears left. Apparently, I was wrong. I missed my grandmother so much already - it was hard to believe she was gone. I missed her lecturing me about being honest and not being too “friendly” with the boys. I would do anything to hear her lectures again. She died just last week, leaving me alone. She found out she had breast cancer a year ago, and unfortunately found out too late. It spread to her brain. My mother had taken Gregory, my brother to the funeral. Mr. Lorne had come too. The funeral had been large as my grandmother had so many friends. I remembered as they lowered her casket to the ground, the desolate emptiness I felt. I did not cry at the funeral, I saved my tears for home. My mother, however, did cry. I never understood why my mother cried for my grandmother, she never knew her. I felt a tear fall down my face as I remembered her last words to me.

“I will love you always, Ainjel. I will never leave you…I am here,” my grandmother had whispered putting her hand over my heart, “Always.”

I still felt her, even on this boring car trip. My grandmother was always full of life-she brought light into any room she stepped in. So many people loved her, and she in turn, loved them. I think I excelled in school just to make her proud of me. Her pride had meant so much. Now she was gone, what would I do now? You'll continue to make her proud, said the old familiar voice in the back of my head. I shrugged and felt the emptiness.

It seemed like everyone I loved left. Now I was going to live with my mother who was like a stranger to me. I did not even know my brother, Gregory. My mother seldom visited now, and when she did it was alone. Again, I laughed at the thought of what mother had to do to get Mr. Lorne to agree to pick me up for whatever reason she could not.

“What is so funny Ainjel?” Mr. Lorne asked from the front seat.

“Oh nothing. I was just thinking of a joke my friend Christine told me last week,” I said looking at even more trees.

“Oh really? What is the joke? Good humor is hard to come by,” Mr. Lorne said almost turning around.

Oh shit! I quickly tried to come up with a joke. My mind was blank. Deciding to pretend how I really felt, I replied, “It doesn't matter”.
I guess he knew my track record of being disturbed, as he just shrugged and continued to drive “home”. This would never be home for me. Home was in Atlanta, with my grandmother and my friends. Feeling dejected, I just closed my eyes and prayed for the compassion of sleep.


We are here, Ainjel,” said Mr. Lorne, gently pressing my shoulder.

I slowly opened my eyes to make out my surroundings. It appeared I was finally home. The house still looked the same. The driveway's brick entrance still had perfectly sculpted plants swaying in the breeze. Colorful flowers stood at the edge of the entrance. The house itself greeted us with its large brick columns in the porch area. The house was still huge, holding four bedrooms on the third level, the living area on the second level, and a separate suite on the first level, which wasn't quite a basement. In all, most people felt awe of this place. I basically felt dread for what I believed to be the start of my boring high school years. I hated it here, out in the country. Sighing, I left the car while Mr. Lorne carried my luggage inside.

I walked in the house wondering what I would find. No one was at the door to greet me. Mr. Lorne indicated I should follow him to my room. We went upstairs and to the right. I still had the same room as I held as a child. Everything was the same.

The room contained a white dresser with two twin size mirrors atop of it. There was a white desk to the side of it with a matching white chair. Just great, I thought. I still have a child's room. The bed rested under the window. It, of course, contained a white bed frame. The closet was the only thing not white in the room. I figured while Mr. Lorne was getting the rest of my luggage, I could start putting my clothes away.

That evening, my mother finally came up to see me, little Gregory in tow. Mother still looked the same. Her slightly curly blonde hair fell just below her shoulders, highlighted by the dim light of the room. She wore a long black skirt that reached above her ankles, and a purple blouse with a light floral pattern. Gregory peeked from behind her, staring at me. Gregory was like a stranger to me. I hardly ever saw him, except for the family holidays. His sandy blonde hair looked disheveled as if he had just came in front the outdoors. He had his hands rested in his shorts pocket. He seemed to dress like me, wearing light grey shorts and a navy blue tee shirt. I looked at his eyes, the same light blue as mine. Gregory seemed to take after my father; he had a sweet gentle spirit.

My father used to tell me that when he looked in my eyes, he thought of the sea. He said they were the same light blue color as when the sun would shine down and highlight the sea. Looking in my brother's eyes, I could see the truth in that.

“Well it is so good to have you home, Ainjel. I have missed you so,” said my mother as she came in to hug me. Yes, mother, and it was so kind of you to meet me at the door, I thought as I returned her half-felt hug.

“Hi Ainjel,” said Gregory, taking his turn.

“Oh Greg, its so nice to see you,” I said giving him a giant of a hug. “I so hope we can become good friends. I am so lucky to have a brother as handsome as yourself!”

Gregory beamed at the compliment, standing up taller. I studied his handsome form. At the age of ten, he was tall for his age. The tip of his head came to my chest. I took in his light blue eyes and his sandy blonde hair, the same color as mine. It was strange I had not spent so much time with Gregory, if he had been my age, we'd have passed for twins.

“Ainjel, I am still teaching classes at the University. As you know, we have only two months until your high school starts. I was hoping you can find a way to amuse yourself during this time,” said my mother, already turning to face the door.

Staring at her departing form, I forced a smile to Gregory. I assured him we would have lots of fun while mother was away teaching her classes. I assured him we would go swimming and watch movies together. Movies were always a love of mine, and I was delighted to notice that Gregory shared my excitement.

Finally, my mother came back to my room. “Gregory, your sister needs to finish unpacking her clothes and personal effects. Why don't you go off and play, and when she finishes she can join you,” she said scooting him out by his shoulders. “I would stay and help Ainjel, but I am going to be working on dinner. Dinner should be ready in an hour”.

Watching my mothers retreating form again, I laughed at the irony. My mother has never cooked in her life. Does it take an hour to order takeout? Giggling, I returned to my luggage.

Finally, we all sat at the table for mother's “hard cooked” meal. Basically, mother had taken out a pizza from Dominos. Sitting at the table, I missed my grandmother again. Back at home, there was always lively conversation, even when it was just the two of us. Grandmother and I could talk about anything. At this table, however, silence was golden. Nobody spoke a word as they ate their pizza. I was confused because was this not the reason a family sat at the table? The silence only made me miss her more. Dismayed at my new life, I ate in silence.

After dinner, I went outside with Gregory. He wanted me to walk him to his friend Patrick's house. Patrick lived in a large colonial house at the end of our street on the left. I noticed to the back of the houses was a dense barrier of woods. I suddenly felt a sense of dread. I couldn't fathom it. I had never felt this way before. Shrugging, I walked on. I assumed the dread came from the fact that at my grandmother's house, there wasn't much wooded area. Here, it seemed everywhere. A wooded prison, I thought to myself gloomily.

As we were walking down the street, we saw a boy my age standing next to his mailbox. He wore his jet-black hair combed back, and shaved on the sides. I could see the muscles peeking out from under his white UGA sleeveless tee shirt. . He was a head taller than my five foot five. He was wearing a pair of navy blue umbros. He had a basketball in his hand.

“Hey,” he said.

There was something strange about this boy, it almost felt like I should have known him. I must have looked like a fool, just standing there and staring.

“Umm, can you talk?” he asked grinning.

“Hi Scott,” my brother said.

“Hey Greg. Who is this?”

“That's my sister. She came home to live with us,” said Greg, smiling proudly.

“Ainjel?” whispered Scott, coming closer.

I couldn't remember Scott. I felt embarrassed, searching my memories for anything, anything that would place a face with the name.

“Do you remember me?” he asked standing right at me, putting a tentative arm on my shoulder.

I started to shake my head no, not having a clue to who this person was.

“Remember, you used to by my best friend when we were little. We used to go fishing together,” he said, smiling even wider.

Suddenly, memories came flooding in. I saw Scott and me in the woods, Scott and me fishing on the dead tree in the middle of the stream, Scott and me walking endlessly along the trails the neighborhood parents had made in the woods-So many memories. Scott and me making forts, and the mock wars we would have. How could I have forgotten Scott Ward, he had been my best friend at the age of five.

“Oh God Scott! It has been so long,” I cried giving Scott a hearty embrace.

“Wow Ainjel! It is so good to see you!” he said returning the hug with enthusiasm. “Where have you been? Are you back for good?”

I didn't know what to say, after all I couldn't remember when I left this place. To be more exact, I couldn't remember why. I looked at him confused, staring past him.

“Well, I have been in Atlanta with my grandmother,” I said carefully dancing around the issue of why I was back in Nicholson. “My mother thought it would be best for me to experience the city life”

Scott drew his eyebrows together; I could tell he suspected I was leaving something out. I felt my throat go dry, I really didn't want to go into this. After all, what could you say when you had no memory of it?

“I see.” He said, staring at me intently. “I remember the day you left, I never understood why, though. Although, I do remember we weren't really able to get together during that time like we had done before.”

I just gave him a vacant stare. The only thing I could remember was the laughs and fun Scott and I had out here. An image of me pushing Scott of the log and watching him fall ungracefully in the stream came to mind. I stifled a giggle.

“Yeah, I was young then so I don't really know what was going on. I hardly remember it. I think my mother just needed a break, finding out she was going to have Greg and dealing with dad's death” I said looking at the ground. “I am back because my grandmother passed away last week.”

“Oh god, Ainjel, I am so sorry,” he said patting me on the shoulder. “I didn't know.”

“Well you didn't know I was coming back either. It's ok. Its hard, but I will go on. She would have wanted me to,” I said, trying to reassure him with a smile.

“Anyways, I'm walking my brother here to his friends house. Wanna walk with us?” I said.

“Sure, perhaps we can catch up,” smiled Scott stepping in place beside me. “I'd really like to know what you've been doing these past ten years.”

I gave him one of my “special” smiles. I figured it would be nice to talk to Scott again – it had been so long. How much had he changed from the boy I knew so long ago? Besides, it would be nice having someone to talk with.

The walk to Patrick's house didn't take but a minute. We saw Gregory to Patrick's door and then set off back home. Scott told me of his life after I left for Atlanta. Scott had been into sports from first grade, joining little league baseball. He also played football after baseball season. He was now going to try out for the team when school started again, junior varsity. He really loved the sport.

I smiled, listening to all his stories. More memories came rushing back to me. I could not believe I had been such a tomboy as a child. I laughed at the thought.

“What's so funny, Ainjel?” Scott asked, narrowing his eyes.

“Just talking to you is bringing back so many memories. I cannot believe what a tomboy I was. I don't even like to camp now!” I said, falling into more laughter.

“I know. It is so funny how people change,” he said. “Its hard to place you with the girl you used to be! Look at you!”

I shrugged, feeling suddenly shy. Why was I feeling shy around Scott, I wondered. Did he think it a good change? Would we still have anything in common? I was not the girl I was. The look in his eyes told me he read my mind.

“And yes, by the looks of you, I would say a good change!” he smiled taking my hand.

We talked some more, reminiscing over the details of my life after I left Nicholson. I told him that I really liked the city life. I felt I would be so bored here in the country, as there didn't seem to be a place of activity for miles. I had felt very unhappy. Where were the shopping malls my friends and me would frequent? Where were the movie theaters? I didn't recall seeing a movie theater at all on my way here. And my friends, they were back in Atlanta. I suddenly felt so alone again.

“Don't worry Ainjel, I will show you around. There is actually a lot to do. In fact, Athens isn't that far at all. My friend drives and could take us sometime,” Scott said, trying to give me some hope.

“That would be wonderful. My mom works in Athens, you know, at the university,” I said.

“Yeah, I know. She has been there for a long time. I think my mom is going to try to get a job there as well. She seems to be bored staying in the house all the time,” he said grinning ruefully.

Finally, after talking for several more hours, I hugged him goodnight. It was so nice seeing Scott. I felt like I had a friend on my corner, someone who would take care of me. That thought surprised me, as I had never needed anyone before. I had always been so independent.

That night I had fitful dreams. In the dream, I was the girl I once was: a 5 year old playing with my best friend Scott.

“Scott, lets play war at the creek!” I exclaimed already running to claim my side.

“Ainjel, I don't want to get dirty!” yelled Scott running behind me.

Reaching my place on the other side of the creek, I reached for some clay. The creek was surrounded by red clay, which made wonderful bombs. The object of our game was to throw the most bombs we could at the other player. Before Scott could even get to his lean-to fort, I threw the first clay bomb.

“Ainjel! That is cheating!” yelled Scott, as he got plastered. “You asked for it!”

We spent the rest of the day throwing more clay bombs, our clothes turning into a hue of red.

I awoke with a smile on my face. What a carefree child I had been, so large on life. I remembered how my mother had looked at Scott and myself in dismay when we walked into the house. Our clothes had been ruined! My father had spoken on our behalf right away, getting us out of trouble. Smiling, I prepared to get ready for the day.

I took a quick shower and got dressed. Looking at myself in the mirror, I compared who I was now with who I once had been. When I was younger, I had golden blonde hair. Now, my hair was sandy blonde, with a natural wave. Being an avid swimmer, I had a slight muscle tone on my arms and legs. What people noticed, however, was my light blue eyes. Some said they changed to deep grey when I was angry. I grinned, as my mother's was deep grey all the time. Did that mean she was angry all the time?

I stepped downstairs to make Gregory's breakfast, as mother had probably left for work. I didn't think Mr. Lorne would bother himself with anything domesticated anyways. If we were to eat, we would have to do it ourselves. Cereal would be on the menu today, raisin bran to be exact. I remembered where mother had showed me where it was the day before and set out making our breakfast.

Gregory came down after me, wiping the sleep out of his eyes. He looked so adorable.

“Good morning, kiddo,” I said handing him a bowl of raison bran, setting mine on the table.

“Morning Ainjel. What are we going to do today?” he asked between spoonfuls.

“Well, Scott is going to take us swimming. Then, maybe we can watch some videos,” I said.

“Ok! That sounds fun.”

Thirty minutes later, Scott arrived. Scott was only fifteen, but his parents let him drive to the pool, as it was a short distance from the house. He drove his brown Bronco to pick me up. His parents had gone ahead and gave him the car providing he didn't go anywhere to long distanced. The pool was the neighborhood pool, he explained, and hardly anyone used it in the morning. We would probably it all to ourselves. I didn't mind that, as I really didn't want to share it with a lot of screaming children.

When we arrived at the pool, I swam a couple of laps. Gregory tried to follow me, grabbing my leg as I swam past him. Scott, then decided to join in the game and swam up under me, and lifted my torso. I screamed as he picked me up and threw me back in the water. We had a lot of fun laughing and splashing each other the rest of the morning. I really enjoyed being around Scott - he was like a brother to me.

After swimming, we went back to my house in order to watch some videos. The first movie we watched was “breakfast club”. Scott took a seat on the couch by the window, and I laid my head on his shoulder. I felt so calm and peaceful which was a nice change, as all that week had been turmoil.

We then watched Aliens. I guess we shouldn't have put that one in because Gregory starting crying half way through the movie. I sighed, and brought him upstairs. He was so scared.

“I'm sorry Ainjel, but seeing those monsters come out of those people was really scary,” he said looking at the floor.

“I know Gregory. I should have thought of you when we played that. I will tell you what, lets go back downstairs and watch another movie,” I smiled giving him a hug.

“Would you be mad?” he asked, his blue eyes opening wide.

“No hon., I wont. I promise,” I smiled, taking his hand to go back downstairs.

Scott smiled when we got downstairs, asking what else we would like to watch. We choose to just play monopoly, as we figured we could watch more movies later. Monopoly had always been one of my favorite games, and I never lost.
“Ainjel you have all the properties!” pouted Gregory, stomping his foot. “Give us a chance!”

“Now Gregory, if I gave you a chance, you wouldn't really have won on your own. Don't you want to win on your own?” I asked.

“I guess so,” he pouted showing his upper lip.

“Well if it makes you feel better, Greg, she is kicking my butt too,” laughed Scott, giving me a fake glare.

This had been such a good day, and I was so happy Scott had come. He truly made the day go by faster. I really thought I could find some semblance of happiness here with Scott as my friend. We finished playing monopoly, with me winning, when Scott had to leave. I gave him a goodbye hug, squeezing him tight. He grinned and looked at me intently. I suddenly felt very uncomfortable. His face got closer and closer to mine, I could almost feel his breath. My heart felt like it would pound out of my chest, I wanted to get away from him, needed to get away from him.

“Ainjel,” he whispered.

“Scott, I need to umm need to help mother fix dinner. I need to go,” I said, the fear showing in my voice. I gave him another quick hug and almost ran inside leaving him confused.

That evening, once in my room, I contemplated what happened with Scott. Did he try to kiss me? His face was so close, I remembered feeling his breath. I was so confused - I didn't understand why I reacted like that. I was truly scared when he tried to kiss me. I had basically panicked. Why would I feel like that? I knew I was attracted to him, and I knew I felt so safe and comfortable with him. Yet, at that moment, I wanted to run. He never came back for the rest of the day, what if he was angry with me? How would I face him if he did come back? The experience was so frustrating. I figured that because it would have been my first kiss, I was probably nervous. Perhaps everyone acted that way. Scott was a nice boy, and I was lucky that he wanted to spend time with me. I really wanted to see him tonight. I frowned looking out my window facing his house. Why had I not told him that I liked him, why did I just run away? When we were kids, I remember him telling me he would marry me. I grinned at the memory.

        We were at our tree in the middle of the creek. Scott sat on one side and I sat next to him. We were talking about nonsensical stuff that only children dream up. Scott suddenly looked at me with a serious expression.

        “Ainjel, when I grow up, I want us to get married. Mom and dad say when people grow up they have to get married. Well, I Wanna marry you!” he said, giving me the most intent look he could muster up.

        “OK Scott! We will get married when we grow up!” I cried wondering what marriage really was.

        “Well here let me give you a ring. People who are going to get married always have to have a ring,” he said tying a piece of grass to my finger.

“And now you have to do the same. You have to tie the ring to my finger,” Scott said, handing me a piece of grass.

I took the offering, and tied it to his finger. He gave me the biggest smile of anyone I had ever seen.

“Ok, We can never take our rings off!” Scott cried, holding his ring up proudly.

I grinned at the memory, remembering how the ring didn't last 1 day before we destroyed it. What if he never comes back again? What if I am left alone? How I wish my friend Suzanne was here, she could have helped me through this. She was back in Atlanta though, how I missed her. Sighing, I slowly fell asleep


        Scott finally did come back, however the next day. We never spoke of what happened the night before. It was as if it never happened. That was a relief to me as I wasn't sure I wanted to deal with it now.

We started to have a routine the days before school started. He'd come pick Gregory and I up for swimming. We would then go back to my house and watch movies or play games. Scott and I would talk for hours. Before we knew it, my first day at high school was about to begin. Scott was there to reassure me, my rock. I don't think I would have been able to deal with the situation of going to a new school with people I did not know had it not been for him.

“You'll be ok, Ainjel,” He said smiling in my living room.

“I don't know, Scott. I just feel kind of nervous. Know what I mean, it is my first day,” I said, getting up to fix myself a drink. “You have all kinds of friends, and I have no one.”

Scott reassured me then that he would take care of me, and I believed him. I hoped to myself we would have most of our classes together. In a way, I was excited. High School should be so much better than what I was accustomed to. I didn't really like school anyways. I didn't really like anything.

The day before my first day of school, my mother took me shopping, one of the only times I actually saw her. She was always busy, working a full year around at the University. I understood it was her life. It would have been nice, however, to see her some of the time. We went to the mall in Athens to get me some new school clothes.

I walked around all the shops, listening to her chatter about how exciting it should be in high school. Why can't she just go for me if she likes it so much, I thought, irritably. Resigning myself to hearing her speak about herself for the rest of the day, I concentrated on finding the clothes that I felt I needed.

I got myself 4 pairs of Levi jeans, going for the more comfortable look. All I really needed was more jeans because I had plenty of shirts and sweaters. Mother, however, would have none of that. She demanded I get more shirts and more “adequate” pants. So, by then end of the day, I found myself with four more dresses, three more pairs of dress pants, and many more blouses. I sighed, I would probably only wear half of these. Well, I would wear half if I could escape my mother's notice, I thought to myself.

We got a quick dinner at Wendy's and drove home. It was dark by the time we got to the driveway, and I wondered if Scott was home. I decided I would like to see him before I settled down for the night. Mother, of course, ignored me as soon as she got through the door so I had plenty of time.

“Ainjel, I didn't think you would be here,” said Scott with a smile on his face.

“Well I was hoping to see you before school tomorrow. I don't know how much time we will have before it starts”

“We'll be ok, Ainjel. We can always hang out on the weekends,” he reassured me.

“I know, but I will miss you.”

We spent the rest of the evening talking about his friends, and the things they do. He told me about all the parties his friends would throw, how we could go to the movies on the weekend, and the football games. It seemed that was what my life would be: study, sleep, and parties. I didn't know how I felt about this, as the only person I knew was Scott. I assumed, that everyone else would be nice. After all, Scott wouldn't hang out with them if they were not.

The next morning met me with chaos. My mother, who always seemed to vanish, made her presence known. When I got downstairs, breakfast was actually ready. Well, attempted breakfast was ready. My mother tried to make scrambled eggs - I just stared.

“I think I will have cereal, I am not feeling well,” I said reaching for the cereal.

“I worked so hard on these eggs, Ainjel. I would hope you'd have breakfast with me,” said my mother, her stern grey eyes on me.

“I'm sorry, mother. Must be the nerves,” I said reaching for the milk.

“Oh you will do well today. What will you wear on your first day? You know, first impressions are important. I think you should wear one of the outfits I got you yesterday,”

I groaned. One of the shirts she just loved was a pink short sleeve with floral imprint. I preferred the traditional grays, navy blue, and blacks. I just smiled and finished my breakfast.

After my shower, I wore my hair up in a ponytail. I wore a light grey tee shirt with a pair of blue jeans. I hope my mother wouldn't put up too much of a fuss. At least they don't have holes in them, I thought ruefully. I looked at myself one last time in the mirror, and nodded with satisfaction. I looked decent enough for my first day.

“Ainjel, please tell me you're not wearing that. We had gotten you so many nice outfits,” scolded my mother, stopping me at the doorway.

“Mother, this is high school. At high school, one needs to dress comfortably so they can learn more adequately,” I said, getting more irritated by the minute.

“I really think you should try on one of the blouses I got you yesterday. Maybe put a nice barrette in your hair. After all, People will talk if you go in wearing that “ said my mother, refusing to let this go.

I just shrugged and walked by her. I never had her before tell me how to dress, and I would not have her tell me now. If she cared so much, she would have been in my life long before this. Felling my temper start to get the best of me, I jogged the rest of the way to Scott's house. I was determined not to let her know she gets to me.

To be continued

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