ADOPTED – Episode 1
© Happy William
Staggering a little less than normally, I made my way home, no, to the house, and knocked on the door.
Though slightly drunk, I wasn’t stupid to go about banging the door. That alone will earn me punishment from my foster parents, Linda and Joseph Matthew. Not that it mattered. They always found the littlest thing to use against me.
Taking in a deep breath, I waited for them to open the door. I turned the knob after hearing a ‘click’ and stepped into the house. For wicked and heartless people, Linda and Joseph were quite neat. Cross that, they made sure I kept the house neat. They were average classed people, living in the suburb part of the city. Affording complete and rich meals each day, with a good dose of alcohol on the side.
I waited a minute or two, and when I saw no sign of them, I proceeded to run to my room.
“And where do you think you’re going?” the menacing voice stopped me in my tracks. Joseph.
“And in such a hurry?” Linda added, a sneer evident in her tone.
I turned around slowly. They were sitting on a sofa, in the dark parlour. No wonder I didn’t see them.
“T–to my room,” I said with a slight stutter.
Linda cackled, like the witch she was. “Did you hear what she just said, honey?” she asked Joseph who guffawed in response.
“But mom I–”
Before I knew what was happening, her palm connected to my cheeks with a loud ‘WHAM!!!’ sending me sprawling to the floor.
I’d forgotten; they insisted I never call them mom or dad, unless the social workers were around.
I screamed from the pain and saw stars in my peripheral vision. Like an explosion had gone off in my head.
“I’m not your mother, you stinking daughter of a bitcg!” she hissed, pulling my hair and hitting it on the ground.
Joseph knelt down beside me, with one knee on my abdomen, and he grabbed my small wrists in his big hand.
“Shut up, b****,” he growled and used his other hand to muffle me.
I was already quiet, because I couldn’t breathe. And soon all my struggles slowed down because of expending energy without breathing.
When he noticed my lack of resistance, he got off me, and I immediately drew in a deep breath, clutching my hurting abdomen and stinging cheeks while blinking away the tears that were threatening to fall.
I’m a strong girl.
I won’t cry.
“We’re never going to be your parents, damned girl,” Linda spat, kicking me in the side, “because you’re worthless to everyone. Even your real parents didn’t want you! You’re a curse!”
“A worthless piece of trash,” Joseph added as he squatted and pulled my hand to him forcefully. “And if one word about this leaks out to the social service, you’re dead. Understand!?”
I nodded my understanding.
He kissed his wife, and then laughing, they moved to their room while doing disgusting things.
When I heard their door lock, I picked myself up, lifted my backpack and headed to my mouse sized room, where I ran a hot shower to treat the bruises on my cheeks and wrists. After that, I applied a balm and crawled onto my bed.
It was when I got my pillow to my face that I let out a long agony scream and allowed the tears to flow.
The next morning I awoke to the realization that I hardly slept last night. My pillow was soaked. I stretched and got off the bed, out of my room and into the kitchen.
Omelette and mashed potatoes with coffee.
ONLY, for Linda and Joseph. If they ever found out that I ate their food, then they were going to kill me. Technically.
I made breakfast, and knocked on their door.
“Breakfast is served,” I said.
The door opened, and Linda came out with a huge laundry basket filled with clothes.
“Have this done before you leave for school. Sometimes I wonder why the social workers spend money to school a waste like you. Did you greet me?”
“Good morning, Mrs Matthew,” I said quickly.
“Fool,” she spat and walked to the dinning.
Joseph followed. “My car, make sure it’s washed and waxed. I’m going out with it in the next 30 minutes.”
“Yes. Good morning Mr Matthew.”
He grunted in reply.
I hurriedly grabbed a hose and went to wash the car. I waxed and polished it too.
Then I did the laundry, and tidied up their room, changing and washing their previous bedcovers. I did that every morning.
When I was done, I waited till they showered and dressed up.
“Anna!” Linda called.
“Yes Mrs Matthew,” I replied.
“We’ll eat out today. But be back before we are.” There was a warning in her tone.
“Yes ma’am. Sir, good bye and have a ñíçê day.”
They wouldn’t answer, but if I didn’t say it, then they’ll kill me.
As soon as the car left the driveway, I hurried to the bathroom and took a quick bath.
My eyes felt puffy, my cheeks too. But I had no mirror to check. Linda prevented me from having anything a normal girl would have; make up, dresses, fancy shoes.
And now, I’ve lost interest in those.
I threw on a long sleeved turtleneck, and a faded ripped jeans. I ran my fingers through my hair, putting it to one side to cover my cheek. Then I picked up my bag, and walked to school.
I raised my head up at the sound of the voice snapping me out of my…… oh my God! I was sleeping in class again!
“You’re sleeping in class again,” the teacher, Mrs Lantern said. My thought exactly.
I wiped the back of my hand to clean any trace of saliva from my mouth. Just in case.
“Uh…no ma’am,” I said, blinking rapidly to prevent my eyelids from closing.
She peered at me.
“Are you OK?” she asked with concern in her tone.
I nodded. “I’m with the class. I wasn’t sleeping.”
”OK, what are we learning?”
“Err….we’re learning cell theory. And…. um…yes, you’re talking about one Mr Hooke I think. You said he’s the father of cell, and I was wondering if there’s a mother in the picture.”
I immediately closed my mouth as soon as that came out. I didn’t mean to say it out loud.
The class burst into laughter, and Mrs Lantern shook her head slowly at me.
“Anne father here means—”
“I know, founder. I thought out loud. Sorry.”
“Yeah, because you’re a dummy,” someone whispered from behind me.
I whirled around to see who it was and to tell the person off, but my eyes caught Emilio’s, and he was looking at me. Directly. In the eyes.
He gave me the heebiedabajeebies, like, seriously creeping me out.
I quickly faced the board.
When I turned to peek again, he was now facing his books.
I’ll admit, my heart rate had increased from 72 times in a minute to 340 times in a second.
If that’s possible.
To be continued