Chapter 1

Lacey Graham has been forced to move to the edges of her village after a crime she has committed.

The girl sat on an old wooden rocking chair, pushing it back and forth with her foot. She was a sweet girl. She was just seventeen, not even close to her next birthday yet. But, there was something odd behind her demeanour. Her bright green eyes looked dull and shadows under her eyes only made them pop out like empty eye sockets. Her skin looked pale and there was no trace of her usual blush on her rounded cheeks. Her once long luminous brown hair was cut short to her neck and held back with a rubber band. Her outfit consisted of dark jeans and a green t-shirt with a white scarf wrapped around her neck. She seemed miserable in her almost exile of the village. 

         She was never like this before but, just a couple of months ago she faced something that is considered taboo in this village. Her punishment was quite severe by just seeing it and the chief of the village couldn't punish her when he made it clear that by going in there she had already received a horrendous punishment, one even he couldn't top. So she could only watch everyone in blatant horror as they decided that she be moved to the edge of the village away from everyone in case the spirits decided to come for her. They disregarded her age and the fact that she'd be left alone to be murdered or worse. Everyone just cared for themselves and she knew it.

         Her parents wouldn't even look at her. She felt crushed, after surviving such a horror what she needed- no wanted, was to be held in the loving arms of her parents. But, she shouldn't have expected them to turn sweet now and comfort her. They' haven't comforted her since she was twelve years old! She couldn't say a word the entire time during her sentencing and moved on auto pilot back to her childhood home, her body aching and bruised in several places from what happened and her cheek was red. Her own mother slapped her in front of everyone when she didn't think that she deserved to be punished. Entering through the rickety old door she let out a sob as she looked once more at the living room where when she was younger she used to play all sorts of games with her parents. Rubbing her eyes she headed upstairs to her room. 

         Her walls were painted a light shade of blue and small stars were painted on it. Her bed had a white comforter on it and she had a stuffed teddy bear that she named Berry. Taking out a suitcase she packed all her clothes, stopping when she realized she had to get out another suitcase. After she finished packing she climbed downstairs, where her parents were sitting on the sofa not even looking up as she went into the living room. And then just like that, the harsh words came. She had noticed her parents treating her differently after becoming 12. Their expectations on her were high and she failed them all by what happened. So, feeling ashamed to even call her their daughter they disowned her and told her never to darken their doorsteps again.

          Lacey cried, she said they never loved her in a loud voice. Causing her father to get up off the couch and stomp over to her.

"You will not speak to us like this! Do you understand!?" He yelled grabbing her shoulders and shaking her roughly. She pushed him away from her, taken by surprise he stumbled back. His face turned red and he raised a hand to slap her. She closed her eyes in anticipation and fear as she felt him strike her cheek with a crack like a whip and she fell to the ground, clutching her now red cheek as her tears boiled over. 

"W-Why...?" She whispered softly, so softly that her father could barely hear her. But he scowled at her before crossing his arms over his chest, glancing at her like she was last weeks trash. Behind the hurt, Lacey felt her anger slowly bubbling up and she stood, glaring at him.

"You're the worst dad ever! You and mom, if I could even call her that, always treated me like crap! I'm sick of it! I'm sick of having so much expectations on me! I'm sick of seeing your disapproving faces! I'm tired of it!!" She was shouting now but she didn't care then her tone went soft, "I just wanted..I just wanted you guys to love me like you used to. To hug me and tell me good job when I do anything good.." Looking down at the ground, Lacey wrapped her arms around herself as she continued to cry.

"After everything we've done for you!? This is how you repay him? How you repay me!? We raised you, fed you, clothed you. Heck! We even gave you shelter to stay under and yet you have the nerve to yell at us? To yell at your father!?" Her mother shouted as she took several steps till she was in front of her daughter. Then crack! Lacey was once again on the ground nursing her left cheek, her body shaking from her crying. Her parents started screaming at her to get out and never come here again as she slowly got up, picked up her suitcases and quietly left the house.

'Why couldn't I be good enough for them...?' She thought as she started walking to the house on the edge of the village. She was only seventeen yet expected to live on her own like this? 

"Well, anything is better than being in that house." She said out loud, as she tried to look at the bright side of things.

The End

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