I wake up to a blaring alarm, that annoying beeping sound, and get up and head to take a shower after laying there, looking at the ceiling, for ten minutes. The warm water runs down my sore body, relaxing my stiff muscles. I wash my body and hair and, then, just stand under the shower head.

I hop out and dry quickly, blow drying my hair is a bit of a pain considering it's length. I head to my room and choose an outfit for the day; a pair of black cargo pants, a black, lace bra and panties, a black tank top, a purple, long sleeve button up, a purple and black beanie, black socks and my black, fur lined parka. I straighten my hair, put on some makeup and head downstairs for my normal breakfast; an apple, toast with jam and a glass of ice water.

By this time it is only a quarter after six and, thankfully, it isn't my job to wake up my asshole of a brother, at least I hope it's not. They didn't inform me, so I have a fifty-fifty chance of... Something. I start walking at half past, since I didn't get to explore the town yesterday. I have about thirty USDs in my pocket and find a coffee shop called Tweak Bros. and head inside.

The smell of coffee hits me like a ton of bricks and behind the counter is a man in his late thirties to early forties, "Hello there, haven't seen you before."

"Morning sir, my family and I just moved here from Britain, my name is Nikole, how do you do?"

"I'm doing well, thanks, I'm Mr. Tweak, I'm the owner and operator, along with my wife and son, of this establishment."

"Pleasure to meet you, Mr. Tweak. May I have a medium house blend, please?"

"Yes, you may," he says, I go reaching for the money in my pocket, "Oh no, Ms. Nikole, this one is on the house."

"No, I insist on paying, sir," I say, "It would be rude and unfair to take away from your revenue."

"If you insist," he looks a bit shocked at my refusal, but I do think it's rude.

He makes me my coffee and exchange farewells and I head to the school. I'm there not too long after, but I do look at my phone and see a missed phone call and a voice message. Guess who it's from...

"You little slut! Why didn't you wake your brother up, huh? Just wait until you get home! -CLICK-"

I'm in so much shit.

I should have stayed.

No, too late to do anything about it.

What will they do to me?

Please, Merlin, don't let them- I beg you...

I sigh. Oh well, a few more weeks and she swears she is kicking me out. I just need to make it appear that I don't want to go, so she WILL. If I show her how ecstatic I am, she will force me to stay.

I don't want to stay.

It's seven thirty and school doesn't start until eight, I don't see my brother yet, oh thank Merlin, but a few kids are here. My parka is covering my face, I see another person in a parka, but his is orange and talking to five other guys. My heart clenches at the sight, reminds me of my friends and I, Merlin I miss them. One boy, he looks to be the eldest of the group, catches my gaze and says something to the others, then, they all start walking over to me.

This could either be something good, or I'm about to get my ass handed to me by a gang of bloody muggles, "Hey, are you new?" he asks, I just nod, "Well, I'm Kevin McCormick, the kid in the Orange parka is my little brother Kenny, the guy in the green hat is Kyle Broflovski, the one in the red puffball hat is Stan Marsh, the one twiddling his thumbs is Butters Stotch and the fat one is Eric Cartman."

"I'm not fat! I'm big boned!"

"Pleasure to make your acquaintance," I say as I take off my hood, "I'm Nikole."

"Your one of the kids in that program," Cartman says.

"Yeah," I say, looking away, "My twin isn't here yet."

"You have a twin sister?" Stan asks.

"Brother."

"Fraternal twins, guys," Kyle say, matter-o-factly.

"Well, um, it was good to meet you all, I need to get my schedule and everything."

"Okay," to, "See ya," was heard as I walked towards the office.

I get my class schedule and, as I'm walking out, in comes Hothorne, "You stay right here you little whore, you and I are going to have a little chat."

If I run it will be worse later, please let him not draw attention to us on the first day, when he comes back out he grabs my arm tightly and pulls me away from the office. Everyone is in their respective classes, leaving us alone in the hall, "Please, Hothorne, it's not my fau-" he slaps me, the sound seems to echo and my ear starts to ring.

"You know to wake me," he growls, "I thought we had that little understanding, bitch."

"I shouldn't ha-" a punch to the eye.

He sighs, "Why do you make me do this to you, Nikole? First you make dad leave, then you get into Slytherin, then you can't do anything right... I just need to teach you, over and over again. Why do you make me do this to you?"

"You guys didn-" punched in the mouth.

"I think you've had enough for now," he says, "I expect an apology later, when the swelling goes down."

Merlin, why do I even bother to hope any more? Situations just come out completely opposite, always.

He walks away.

I can barely see.

Normally I would use a glamor, but...

No, I also read about using them in the contract and guess what? We are not permitted to use them, no matter the circumstances, it's going to be a long day.

The world must hate me.

It just has to.

I find my class, using my good eye. I put my hood up and tighten the straps.

I walk in and the class quiets down. I walk over to the Professor, "Sorry, ma'am, I got lost."

"That's alright dear, take the empty seat next to Craig," she instructs.

It was the ONLY empty seat and it was next to a guy, Craig, who looks bored out of his skull. I take my seat and look at the grain on the table, such amazing patterns, "Now that our final student is here, I can tell you about your project," groans are heard from every direction, it makes me smile, "The person you are seated with will be your partner," protests erupt, "Now, now, this project is a month long and each pair must choose an important event, or era, in history from the board, first come, first serve."

I look to my partner, Craig, "Which one do you want to do?"

"What? I can't understand you through that hood," he says with little emotion, if any exist, in his voice.

I unzip my parka just enough and repeat what I said, but I know it sounds like crap, "Are you challenged or something?" he asks, finally looking at me, "Or did som-... What's wrong with your face?" I zip my parka back up and just motion to the board, not looking at him. I don't need any more trouble than I'm already in. He chooses the Dark Ages.

"We can meet whenever you want," I say through my parka.

"I can't understand you through that parka," he spits, "Especially with the way your talking."

I don't unzip it as far as I did last time and repeat my words, I give him my number and the bells rings. The day passes, every single class has us doing projects, guess that's what happens in all honors Muggle classes, but at least history is the only one I have a partner in.

It's lunch, but I sit in the school library to start on the muggle work, plus, I don't want to see or hear what my brother has to say about me. I don't think I can handle whatever horrid lies he comes up with...

What these muggles know is only the tip of the iceberg. If I could us the books from Hogwarts or any bookstore in the magical world... I sigh, best to get this shit over with.

"Dear?" it's the librarian, "Shouldn't you be eating lunch?"

"No, ma'am, I had a large breakfast and don't feel hungry," I lie, "Plus, I got so much homework and projects it feels like it will take me an eternity to complete it all."

"Alright, well, I'm going to take my lunch, be good, you hear?"

"Will do, ma'am."

I get a text not five minutes later, it's from Teddy, 'Hey sweetie, how's life w/ ur asshole brother & cunt-bitch mother?'

'S'okay, I can't wait for her to kick me out."

'I bet.'

'At least you don't have to deal with them. Hey, I got some projects to do, so I'll talk to you later.'

'K, b strong, a few more weeks.'

I smile, it hurts, but I do it anyway. I know he's going to tell the others that shit's already going down, even though I haven't said much, but they can't do anything about it.

I get back to work and put all the books back before the bell rings for the last class of the day, Choir. I don't want to go, not like this.

Questions.

Not good.

Skip?

Even worse.

Plus, with how my voice currently in the shitter... I'm SO fucked.

I'm shaking as I make my way to class. Please, let them be watching something or writing or ANYTHING but singing.

I walk in and I see Kevin and Kenny McCormick and Craig, "Oh, you must be our new student," the Professor says.

"Yes, sir," he gave me an odd look, so I just nod.

"Well, let's see what your range is, alright?"

I just nod and unzip my parka just enough, "Ready when you are, sir."

"Could you take your hood down?"

"I'm a bit shy, sir," some people snort or laugh at the way I'm currently speaking, but I can't help it.

"We won't at laugh you or anything," Kevin says, everyone agreeing and encouraging me.

"Please, sir."

He gives me a stern look, "Take that blasted hood off this instant."

I look down, my arms, no, my whole BODY is shaking as I remove my security blanket. So much for the Slytherin masks. I keep my head down and I am demanded to take the right posture. I close my good eye, my black eye is swollen shut, "What the fuck happened to your face?" I hear one girl ask with a laugh.

"I-I'm a bit clumsy and walked into a wall when I was trying to find one of my classes, nothing to worry about," I lie.

I get skeptical looks from the boys and get laughed at by the girls, "Right, now, let's get to placing you, shall we?"

If I tell anyone what they do to me, I don't know how many times they told me that they would make me disappear. Best just to let things happen and keep the past where it belongs. In the past.

I hear them all talking in the background, apparently Hothorne got around to all of them, since they are all talking about him and what he told them about me. I'm easy, I've slept with just about every guy at my last school, I will sleep with anyone, I'll do anything for a buck, and so on.

I can feel tears fill my eyes, but I will them away.

Why won't they let me be happy?

Why can't I have friends?

I wish I was back home. Within the confines of Slytherin House.

We do warm ups and as I keep getting higher up on the scale, the girls stop laughing, the last note is the top of my range, "Good, you're our only first soprano this year."

I get placed next to Kevin, why does my heart flutter when I'm close to him? Must be a little crush.

Pointless.

Class is dismissed so I put my hood back on, keeping my zipper down just enough for people to understand me, but the three boys stop me from leaving, "What the fuck happened?" Kevin asks.

"You looked fine this morning," Kenny states.

"I'll ask again, what's up with your fucking face?" Craig asks.

"Like I said, I walked into a wall," please, just let it go.

"I call bullshit," the three of them say at once.

"Just," I spot my brother coming down the hall and stiffen, "let it go. Please?"

"Hey, Nikole, who are your friends?" there is a slight edge in his voice.

"Oh, Hothorne, this is Kevin, Kenny and Craig," I say, introducing each one, "We were just discussing choir and the amount of homework we have and the vast amounts of projects our teachers put on us," I look at them, hoping they will play along.

"Yeah, sorry for keeping her," Craig says, thankfully, catching on, "We got paired up for a history project and we were figuring out a time to get together. How about my place and I'll take you home later?"

"Hothorne? Is that alright?" I shouldn't have to ask for permission, but I have to, just to be safe. I'm already up shit creek, I don't need to fall off the log that is, just barely, keeping me afloat.

He clasps his hand on my shoulder and gives it a hard squeeze, it hurts, "Yup, I'll just tell mom and I'll see you later."

"Alright, see you later," I say as he removes his hand.

"Let's get going, shall we?"

I don't really have a choice now. We walk to Craig's car, a red pickup truck, the McCormick brothers head to their separate car, a beat up old Chevy, and we make our way to Craig's house. I don't know why they need to come too, but I feel just slightly more comfortable with them coming along.

We make it inside and head to his room, "You are going to sit here while I get the first aide kit."

I try to protest, but he's out the door before I can get two words in, "You want to tell us what the hell happened from when we first met you to choir?" Kenny asks taking off the hood of his parka.

"Why do you care? You don't even know me," I whisper, not taking my hood down.

"Are you going to tell us the truth or not?" Craig asks walking back in, "'Cause I know for damn sure you didn't walk into a fucking wall."

"Okay, you caught me," I say, I need to come up with something, great, "I was in the restroom and I wasn't paying attention and a girl opened the door as I was about to, so I could leave, and this happened. It was an accident."

They all look at each other with a knowing look, "That one is just as bad as the 'Wall' story, if not worse."

"Could you take down your hood so we can treat your... Um... Face?" Kevin asks.

"I'm fine, can we just get to the project?" I ask, I need them to just back off.

It's none of their business.

I'm not going to be a charity case.

I still have my pride.

Even though it is the size of a pea.

"Once we look at how bad the swelling is."

They aren't going to let up. Merlin, why can't I just use magic to make them not care?

I was so caught up in my own thoughts, and the fact that my head is numb, that I didn't feel them remove my hood, not until one of them lifted my chin so they could inspect the masterpiece that Hothorne decided to make my face.

I keep my eyes closed, I don't want to see their expressions, "I'm going to use a washcloth to clean off what I can, then I'm going to use peroxide to help clean the wound, then I'm going to take it off and then give you an ice pack. This might sting," Kenny says. Why does he sound concerned? He doesn't even know me.

I'm not sure about muggle care, it makes me nervous.

Why didn't I pack a few potions?

It's just my luck I guess.

"I'm going to get us some drinks," Craig says, "Anything in particular?"

Kevin and Kenny ask for some soda and I shake my head. Kevin grabs my hand when I inhale sharply as Kenny starts to clean off my face, "I can do this myself," I say.

"Not with one eye," Craig says, "Trust me, I've tried."

"Craig gets into fights pretty often," Kenny informs me.

Yeah, but you could fight back, "Alright. You got me."

The peroxide hits my skin and I feel it start to bubble and burn, I bite my tongue, I've had worse.

I feel it getting wiped off, "Alright, here's the ice pack."

"Thanks."

"Can you tell us the truth about what the hell happened?"

"Why do you care?" I'm so confused, the only people that genuinely care are far, far away... In a muggle sense.

Who am I kidding? They are far away because of this fucking program. How fucking stupid!

"All throughout the day we've heard shit from your brother and we have a feeling he did this to you," Kevin says.

Deny it, "Hothorne and I are very close, he would never do this to me or hurt me without reason."

"Then why did I hear him-"

"No, he's just trying to see who the assholes are so he can beat some ass," I say.

I have to defend my brother. He only does what he does to protect me. It's my own fault anyway.

'No it's not!' a voice, that is like a whisper of my father's, in my head says, 'It's not your fault.'

After what just happened, what he did to me, it is.

"Cut the crap," Craig practically growls, "Someone did this to you and by the way your brother was talking and the fact that he wasn't with you when you arrived, I'm willing to bet everything that he's the one who did this to you."

"He has never hit me," what about those broken bones the day after you were sorted?

I feel someone take the ice pack from me, "The swelling has gone down enough," it's Kenny.

"Can we just get to the work?" Please, please just let this go.

"You're going to keep defending him? After what he did to you?" They all say, though in different ways.

"What is there to defend? He did nothing to me," I insist.

I'm so bloody pathetic, it's sickening. I'm a disgrace to Slytherin.

"We will be revisiting this topic later," Kevin says.

"There is nothing to revisit, nothing happened," I say again.

Merlin, I beg you, let them just drop the topic and leave it alone.

All four of us get to work on whatever we needed to, Craig and I make a plan to meet up after school to go to the library to look up more information. Craig's parents make dinner for us, vegetable and beef tip stew, so I wouldn't worry about it when I get home.

Kevin and Kenny fight with Craig about driving me home, but Craig was defeated when they said it was on their way home. I said my goodbyes to Craig, Kevin saying he needed to talk to Craig and that he would be out in a few minutes.

I walk out with Kenny, my heart is beating fast with how close he is to me.

Great.

I have a crush on him AND his brother...

My inheritance will be here soon and it won't matter.

My destined mate or mates will pull me towards them.

I have no say.

Magic is always right and pairs you with the person or people that will love you.

What if I don't have a mate though?

"Are you okay?"

"I'm fine, Kenny," I say, we reached their car and he has the door open, "I just space out when I have something on my mind."

"You mean the next lie you're going to tell us when your brother beats you again?"

It's not that simple! I wish I could tell you, I really do, but I can't, "No, just about how my friends are and what they could be doing."

He gives me a skeptical look, "Do you lie about this shit to your friends?"

"I'm not lying though," I say, am I really that easy to read? "My friends are like my family, we have no secrets," except this... And a few others...

"Are we not friends?"

"That type of relationship needs to grow," I'm not allowed to have friends, Hothorne won't allow it, "but, in a way, yes, we are friends, but not close enough to where I would call you family."

"We are friends in the making," he says with a smile.

Kevin comes out and gets into the car, "Come on."

"Ladies first."

"But I have to get out before you," I say.

"It doesn't matter," Kenny says.

I sigh and hop in before he does, I wasn't going to make it home arguing with them. I tell them to stop at the corner of the street, I could walk the rest of the way, but they just keep driving, not slowing down until I, reluctantly, tell them which house is mine.

All the lights are on.

I hope they are in a good mood.

Please, let them just leave after I get out of the car.

They wait for me to get to the door before they leave.

I feel empty.