"Cover that up!" Drunken Mother screamed. "Never in my life have I seen such a disrespectful brat!" She stumbles as she pulls down her sleeves to hide the bruise around her wrist. A small, salty tear fell, moistening her chapped, cherry lips.


1. Chapter One

Music. Her life. Scrawled on paper napkins or anything else, she pours her heart and soul into melodies and rhymes. She breathes the rhythms and her heart flutters with the beat. Her long, jagged fingernails tap, tap, tapping along to a song only she can hear. For a moment, she isn't here. She isn't in her sagging, run-down house. No, for a moment, she is lost. For a moment she's escaped to the only place she calls home: her mind. Recalling verses and chords, she plays on the table, as if before her was the piano from school. But, all too soon, she is interrupted. A smash in the kitchen sends her fleeing to her room as fast as her long, skinny legs can carry her. Mother screams. 

"Rae!" Another smash. The girl, identified as Rae, curls up the corner of her room. She doesn't dare make a sound. The girl called Rae glances at the small bag packed, right beside her window. She could do it. She could run. Run for miles and miles and never turn back. But, no. She couldn't, could she? No matter how awful Mother was, she needed someone, anyone, to take care of her. But surely someone else could take the girl's place, right? Reaching her small, frail hand and biting her cherry chapped lips, she sighs, and pulls her hand back, shaking her head. Wrong. 

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