I sighed and thrust my head back onto my pillows, staring blankly at the blue slanted walls leading up to the flat white part of the ceiling. I was on top of my covers, the covers I'd made out of random pennies I found on the sidewalks of town, and I was still really warm.

   Maybe if I stepped outside, just like this, for a few minutes and then came back inside. That could help. But I didn't feel like getting up, so I continued to lay there on the twin sized bed I slept on. I closed my eyes. Maybe if I could get my mind off it, I could ignore the heat.

   I didn't know why I was so hot. The thermostat was only turned up to fifty-eight degrees at the most. That was barely warmer than what it was outside right now, at, what... eleven something?

   A knock sounded on the door, startling me so much I almost peed myself. My blood went cold, and I wasn't feeling so warm anymore. I walked downstairs, forgetting momentarilly about how I could just tell whose there. I was so used to blocking it out, checking only periodically to make sure no Silver Liners were lurking in the shadows of my life.

   I peeked through the blinds. Much to my relief, it was only Carson. This I knew for sure. I opened the door, forgetting that I was still in shorts and a tank top.

   "Is that offer still up for grabs?" He asked shyly. I smiled. He laughed.

   "I like the look. Shorts in November," He smirked at me, making my heart stutter. I loved that smile. It lit up the features on his face. But that wasn't what I should be thinking of...

   "Thanks," I tried to say as meanly as possible, but it didn't work. We ended up laughing hard, and Carson finally stepped inside.

   "Still not tired?" He asked after a minute.

   "Not really," I said honestly.

    This was the awkward moment... I didn't want to stay the night downstairs, because it was the living room. But, it was definitely weird to just have him in my bedroom. I wasn't sure what to do next, so I just kind of turned to walk back of the stairs. Of course, it was just my luck that I would almost miss the step half way up, and bump into Carson- who I had not realized was right behind me.

   "Sorry," I apologized, blushing.

   "It's fine." I realized that he had a hold of my waist, and wasn't letting go as I had expected he would.

   An old memory popped up in my mind, making me shiver.

   He had caught me just as I was about to slip on the steps, grabing ahold of my waist to steady me. I looked back, into his green eyes, and couldn't help but smile. Jason was looking at me like nothing else in the world existed; and for a moment, it was only just the two of us. My aunt was at work- it was a Saturday, and I had the house to myself. I had invited Jason over to talk... about anything, really. I liked how Jason could accept me as I was- he knew all about how I was abused, and my sister... He knew that David, my little brother, had run away, and I hadn't seen him for months.

   Jason loved me just as I was. He didn't care about my past, and how messed up I was. Slowly, he bent down to kiss my lips, and it was probably the most wonderful thing I had ever experienced. Or so I thought.

   This day was exactly a week before Jason had kidnapped me and taken me to the Flourence Crane Facility, where I was turned into the Shifter that I am today.

   My breath caught as Carson held me the same way Jason had. The memory was too painful. The wound was still too fresh, even after two years. 

   "Please let go of me," I whispered.

   "Are you okay?" He asked.

   "Yeah... just... a painful memory." I hadn't yet told Carson the story of how I got to be where I was today.

   "I get it," he said releasing me.

   "Thanks." It was a whisper, but the word echoed on the narrow staircase.

   I gripped the railing and finished the small trip to my room. I sat down at the head of the bed; meanwhile, Carson stood awkwardly in the doorway.

   "You can come in here," I said, trying to erase the awkwardness.

   "This isn't what I expected," He said, looking around. The room was fairly big, for a kid's bedroom. Two long windows, on either side of an old unused chimney that was covered up with drywall, faced west. Yellowed curtains were draped over dusty blinds, and fake flowers crowned the top, in an attempt to bring in a girly feel- as if the baby blue paint and flowery border weren't enough. From the doorway, to the right was a tiny attic door. It was maybe from the floor to three feet off the ground. I would have to do the army crawl- flat on my belly- to get inside that attic. And even then, I would barely make it. Carson couldn't even think of trying to get in there at his current size- 6' 1". He would have to shift into someone smaller to get in there.   

   Because I have to sleep next to a wall, preferably in a corner- providing I happen to be sleeping in a bed at the time- my bed was shoved into the corner on the left to the door. The entire wall on the door's side was flat like a normal modern wall should be. I had a mountain of pillows, because I like lots of pillows, snuggled up into the corner. Currently, I was leaning back on this mountain.

   The floor was covered in white carpet. A little girl had taken a marker and drawn a little star near the door. The girl had been five at the time when she did this. The family no longer lived there, and the house couldn't be sold, so it was abandoned... supposedly uninhabited- which, of course was not true. Not when I'm living here.

   "What were you expecting?" I asked, curious.

   "Not this... I don't know. You don't seem like the flowery type," He said, handling one of the flowers that was also above the white door.

   "I'm not. But, when I leave, I don't want it to be apparent that someone was living here... and, if I had to leave in a hurry and I'd taken those down, they would know. They wouldn't know who, of course. But they would know that someone was here," I explained, chuckling.

   "When do you plan on leaving?" He asked thoughtfully.

   "Not too much longer. Probably in the next few weeks. I've been here since September, and they've yet to find me... But I still don't want to risk it. I'm going to miss Coldwater," I told him quietly.

The End

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