Memory Burns

Trish's house catches on fire, causing both of her parents' deaths. Only she knows that she was the cause of that fire. She goes to live in an orphanage in the hopes of being adopted, but something weighs on her mind. Somebody who had threatened her had intentionally killed her parents, and now they want to kill her. She goes from foster home to foster home, trying to adjust to the life she now has and let go of the ones she lost.


2. Chapter 2- Memories

I have finished packing my bags. 3 shabby suitcases that the orphanage lended me. I don’t need that much.  I could have fit all of my stuff into one of those suitcases.

I sigh, pushing stray blonde hair out of my face. All of my personal items are piles of ashes now. Because of the fire. My eyes sting.

The fire... I never dare think about what started it. It haunts the dark corners of my mind, but I never dare peer into those corners. I sigh again, lifting tears out of my eyes with my fingers before they can fall. No crying. I have cried too much in one week to ever feel good about crying again.

A truck honks, and my head jerks up. There is a woman with cold, grey eyes driving a pickup truck, the windows rolled down. Loud music blasts  from the truck, making the air around me vibrate. My ride to the end of happiness. The orphanage.

I groan and push my hair out of my face again. Of course, it falls back down as soon as I pull my fingers away.

“Hey girly! You must be... hrm....” the woman shuffles through her papers.

“Trish.” I mutter,  plugging my ears with lime green earphones to block out the trashy music.  My old friend Kurt got them last year for my birthday. We aren’t friends anymore. Not since mom broke up our friendship. My mom isn’t here to do that anymore, though. I shook my head, squeezing my eyes shut. No thoughts about mom.

“Yea, well it says in the papers that your name is Mara.” she says,  her hand knocking her coffee. The coffee explodes,spilling on her lap. She swears, and my eyes widen.

“Y-you just cussed in front of me!” I say, bewildered.

“C’mere, girl.” the woman says.

I reluctantly walk over to her and she grabs my arm. She yanks it and I am forced  lean in through the window. The cloudy stench of cigarettes and stale food hits me like a solid wall, and I stumble backwards. But she call so I try my hardest not to breathe.  She rubs my arm against the hot coffee on her lap, making my sleeve brown and my skin burn. I clench my teeth together as tears water in my eyes.

“Sorry ‘bout that. You made me spill my coffee.” the woman says gruffly, forcefully throwing my arm down. I cradle it against my chest, arm searing in pain. “Cmon, no more time to waste, get in the truck, Mara.”

“It’s Trish,” I mutter between clenched teeth.

I lift my light bags into the trunk, and mouth a curse of my own- to my surprise-  when a bag pops open and my underwear spills onto the road- underwear that the orphanage lended me. I hastily gather all of the of clothing up off the ground and drop them back into the empty suitcase.  I hoist the flimsy bags onto the back of the rusty pickup truck and then force open the creaky door that is hanging off of the truck by a thin strap of metal. After climbing inside, I lean back and close my eyes.

As we drive up the worn road, I have a chance to examine her more closely. Her face is worn with wrinkles and moles, making her a sore sight. Her lips are big, but puckered rudely, and her beady eyes reflect the sun in a gray, steely light. She is slightly overweight, fat poking through the holes in her pre-torn jeans. She wears a plaid shirt- blue and green - with the top 5 buttons popped, giving me a view I didn’t want to see.

“The orphanage is located in northern Kentucky,” she says, eyes probing me with curiousity.

I nod. When my parents died, I was only thinking about that. Since I am 16, not legally an adult, I can’t live on my own, and I have no relatives. I never thought about being sent to a foster home. I still need to be chosen by a potential ‘parent’, so right now I am waiting it out. Going to where the parentless kids go. I sit, watching the trees blur before me, and I tune out the roar of the truck and the blast of the music from the radio. And I remember...

“Honey, are you hanging out with that boy again? I told you. I don’t want you hanging out with boys!” my mom yelled, gripping my wrist.

“Mom, who’s that boy, anyways? Kurt? What do you have against him? Why do you even care? Why don’t you focus on my all the good things I’ve done and stop focusing on all of my flaws! Not that he was a flaw...” I added quietly, tears rolling down my cheeks.

My mom wrapped me in a hug, her fingers tugging at knots in my messy hair.

“I stopped hanging out with him 2 weeks ago. He’s gay, anyways, if that’s what you’re worried about,” I muttered.

“All the more reason to not hang out with him. Who do you hang out with now?” my mom asked, her arms tightening.

“I don’t want to tell you, because you will only send them away. Every single friendship I've ever had you ruined!” I yelled, ripping myself out her grasp.  She was so biased!

“Oh, hunny....” my mom snapped out of it, “ get over here RIGHT now, Mara Isabelle Parfin!”

2 weeks later....

“So, you smoke? Do drugs?” asked the slender girl standing before me, arms crossed.

“N-no, but I am interested...” I stuttered, feeling guilt rise up like bile in my throat.

“I’m not completely sure I can trust you,” said the girl, “so I am going to start you off with something small. No backing out after this.Time will tell if I have to do something about your loyalty problems,” she handed me a small pack of cigarettes, clenching my shaky hand fiercly.

I forced my fingers out of her hand. The cigarettes felt cold to my touch, dangerous. They were dangerous. No surprises, right?

I nodded and handed her my wadded up money. She examined it, stuffed it in her pocket, and started towards me. I backed away in fear, my eyes locked on hers. They were red. Bloodshot, yes, but the irises were red too. She scared me.

But she only opened up my new pack of cigarettes and took a match, striking it. She proceeded to show me how to hold the cigarette in my mouth.

As I inhaled, I coughed. It was gross; disgusting. It filled my lungs thickly and made it difficult to breathe. I spat it out and nodded my thanks, my hair bobbing in my pony tail.

She took the money out of her pocket again, examining it, but then nodded once towards me and stalked out of the locker room, her greasy black dreadlocks trailing out behind her.

I exhaled, coughing one last time, and opened my locker to get changed.

three weeks later

“I need more from you girl!” the Dealer shouted, “ three weeks ago you said you wouldn’t back out! I even started you out with something that wasn’t even illegal, so that you would feel better about it! What’s wrong with you!?”

“You need to get out of my house,” I stuttered, clasping my hands together, “ you could get into a lot of trouble if you don’t move right now.”

The Dealer cursed, making me put my hands over my ears to block out the harsh language, but she rolled her eyes, and pushed through the door, slamming it behind her.

Later that night.

“I’m home from practice, mom!” I yelled, dropping my heavy backpack onto the floor with a thud. But then I smelled smoke. Lots of it.

I paced the living room, looking for the source, when I saw the jewlrey drawer half open.  The jewlrey was missing. The Dealer had been here, and she had stolen something.

“Who was that girl here? She said she was worried about you, because you were interested in drugs!” my mother said, walking into the room with her arms crossed. Her brown eyes looked so cold.

“I-I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“You stutter when you are nervous. What else are you doing, alcohol, cigarettes?” mom asked coldly, crossing the room.

“N-n-n-no , n-never!” I said, running out the house. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a small spark. A lit cigarette.

I could have warned my mom, I really could have. But I was too blinded by hurt, betrayal, and fear.

I kicked off running down the street, and sat down, as I watched the show. My house was going to burn down in flames, and my parents were going to die.  I didn’t know how much that would affect my life. I had know idea what was to come.                                   


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