Next morning I wake up with a killer headache and a sore body. It’s already eight in the morning, signaling that I am running late for school.

I wake up and somehow brush my teeth, not bothering if I reek of alcohol and sweat. I am wearing clothes from last night. Since I am running late, I decide to grace the school with my presence in the same stale clothes.

After I am done with my so-called morning routine, I take my school bag and as quietly as I can manage, I climb downstairs. I move like a shadow, making no sound at all. I don’t want to face mom, dad, my twin sister-Grace or my elder sister- Phoebe.

I do the ninja-walk to the front door and was about to reach for the door handle to open the door when a familiar hand beat me to it. I turn around to find my nightmare... I mean my mom, glaring at me.

“Where were you last night?” She growls. A dangerous amount of energy is leaking off her body. She resembles a ticking bomb at the moment. I know that I shouldn’t be messing with her and I should act accordingly, avoiding danger but I like to push buttons. I like to play with fire. I never listen to warnings. I am a troublemaker. I look for trouble.

“Good morning mom,” I greet her while grinning innocently as if I am not reeking of alcohol and as if my eyes are not red due to the hangover. A thundering growl erupts from her chest, sending chills down my spine but I stand my ground.

“Out,” Getting wasted, cursing a god. That’s all I managed to say. Her glare heats up, even more, digging holes into my body.

“You were drinking and don’t even try to lie, Nefret. I can smell it on you.” She growls even more. I don’t even try to debate with her at this moment and watch her calmly. I know I am getting even more late for school and that’s going to put me in more trouble but I am okay with it. I’ve dealt with the worst. I go looking for trouble and when trouble finds me, I welcome it warm-heartedly.

As the silence begins to fall, I see frustration creep its way to her face as she rubs it and looks at me.

“Gosh, Nefret. Why can’t you be like your sisters? What’s wrong with you?” She asks and even though it’s the billionth time she said this to me, it still pierces my heart and continues to break it into smaller pieces. It still continues to eat me. The hurt and the pain refreshes every time I hear her repeat those words. New and sharper than the previous time.

“Trust me, mom, I tried,” I say with a sickly sweet smile which makes her growl out loud once more before I leave the house. It’s snowing when I started walking, scratch that, running for school. I slip and fall on the snow a couple of times but surprisingly I reach school in record-breaking time.

The first period has already started when I enter school and I am pretty sure that Mrs. Sutton, who teaches us English, would not let me in even after having a pass. Today the first period is hers and I wouldn’t even care to show up to her class because she hates me. Well, good for me.

I go to my locker and take out my books. Books. I want to set them on fire. They are my biggest enemies. Suddenly, someone shuts the locker on my face, barely missing my fingers from getting chopped off.

“What the fvc-” I turn around to find Melissa with a huge smirk decorating her face. I give her the sickly sweet smile that I use quite often, “Ah Melisa, nice to see you.” I said.

“Bitch, why are you even here? I mean, you should be in kindergarten, learning alphabets cuz you can hardly read. I wonder how you even managed to get in high school.” She snickers and her minions Sarah, Hazel, and Tiffany giggle behind her. I wave at them sweetly.

“Am here cuz I worked my ass off to get here. I didn’t have to cheat or do shit like that to pass the tests. At least, I am honest with my tests.” I admit while shrugging as I shove my books in my bag, not caring if half of the pages get destroyed or bent in odd angles. She growls at me but I ignore her before walking to the cafeteria to get some lemonade or anything to cure my headache.

I purchase lemonade and head to the next class which happens to be physics. The previous class is not over yet so I wait outside while I drink the lemonade, wishing it to be vodka instead. Soon, the bell rings declaring the end of the first period.

As the seniors gush out of the class, I spot my twin, Grace in the crowd, talking with her friends. Her long, sleek silver hair making her stand out of the crowd. I am junior while Grace is a senior, which surprises many people because we are twins and we’re supposed to be in the same year.

But you see, I am exceptionally good with studies. So good that I failed my junior year and now, I am repeating it, thanks to my dyslexia. As soon as her eyes lands on me, a frown finds its way to her face as she comes to me.

“You’re in deep trouble.” She hisses.

“I know,” I said shrugging but my stomach dips uneasily at her words.

When the class emptied, I went inside. I walk at the end of the class because I am a backbencher. I take my seat and put myself in auto-pilot as the class starts.

The whole day goes by in a blur and I am half happy, half depressed to go home. Mom will interrogate me if I go home and I don’t want to face her yet.

It surprises me when I end up going to the ruins instead. It feels as if something has been pulling me to it. I don’t know. All of a sudden, I want to be in the ruins.

I climb the makeshift mountain slowly and soon, I am standing in front of the statue.

“Hello, Arles.” I utter, looking up at him. His statue stares down at me as usual and I expected my greeting to be unanswered as usual too but this time, I hear a growl before feeling a presence behind me. This time I am not drunk and I know that this happened for real.

Suddenly, I want to be drunk.

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