"Don't wake her up

"Don't wake her up." The voice made her stir. "I said don't!" the voice was hushed, an attempted whisper. She forced herself to keep her eyes closed. She could sense the light outside and knew it would make her shut her eyes again. So she kept them closed.

"I don't want her up here, I mean who the hell is she?" Another voice, this time closer to her. Another hushed sentence she couldn't make out. She heard fist collide with cloth and a high-pitched laugh echo through the small space.

Something moved across the floorboards causing her body to move. She rolled to her side holding her stomach. Her entire body ached and her stomach growled loudly. The high-pitched laugh resounded once again and she sat up quickly. She jerked her eyes open.

She looked around quickly the sunlight coming in through the small windows told her it was morning. Her stomach growled again. She wrapped her arms around her waist and looked at her surroundings.

On her left was a mousy looking boy with light brown eyes and brown hair that was matted to his head. He seemed concerned and she couldn't look at him for very long. She didn't want people to feel sorry for her. Next to him was another boy. This one was more muscular with sandy blonde hair and the most interesting pair of eyes she had ever seen. They were a mixture of green and blue, almost like an ocean. He also seemed concerned like the brown-eyed boy. Once again she had to look away, she moved her brown eyes to the next boy.

"What's your name?" The brown-eyed boy asked. She looked over at him and stared as if she could read him, see if she could trust him. She ignored his question and continued her investigation of the boys.

The next one was chubby and had a round face with a mess of brown hair. He sat farther back from the other two as if he was scared of her presence.

"Aren't you going to tell us who you are?" the ocean-eyed boy spoke next. She turned to face him; he was the one who had woken her. She gave him, what she hoped, was an uninterested look. She turned to the fourth boy in the small room. The first thing she noticed were his glasses, they were large and didn't quite fit on his face. She stared at them, then at his hair that went in all directions. One end of his hair ended just above his ear and when she noticed it she had to close her eyes. It had burned on something, she was sure about that.

The boy looked away angered by her reaction to his ear. She looked down at her hands. She didn't want to talk to any of them. She could feel her blonde hair stick to her head. It weighed it down and when she reached up to brush it behind her ear she felt the amount of grease that had built up in it.

Her gaze shifted towards the brown-eyed boy and he took a breath, "What's your name?" She refused to answer keeping her mouth shut. She never trusted boys. She never trusted people after having just met them. It was hard to tell whether or not they wanted to help her or if they wanted to turn her in.

She began looking for a trap door, anything to get her out of the house. She saw it under a table and reached out to move it. She had almost got the trap door up when her stomach growled loudly again.

"Are you hungry?" Ocean-eyed boy asked. She eyed him carefully, nothing but concern. Her blonde hair shaded her face from the boys, but she couldn't go without eating for much longer. She nodded once. "Let's take her to the Blue Point." The others nodded in agreement, all except the boy on the end with the glasses.

They helped her through the trap door and it took her a minute to find her legs once on the ground. She looked down at herself. Her pale blue shirt that had once belonged to her brother hung limp on her slight frame. It was covered in dust and dirt and a hole had appeared on the bottom fringe. Her jeans had holes all over, the holes in her knees almost had the pants in two. She knew she looked like a mess, and for that reason she could not meet their eyes. She heard their hushed whispers about whether or not to take her. She kept staring at her beat up sneakers until one of them took hold of her elbow.

She flinched away, but the hand would not move. She raised her head to see who had her arm and to her surprise it was the brown-eyed boy. He had a strong grip for such a stringy boy. He began to lead her through the town. People stared and she could feel them on her back. She hunched over and tried to hide her face even more. She couldn't be found. Not yet.

A five minute walk brought them to the Blue Point diner. She was ushered in and sat at a table.

"What do you want?" She shrugged staring at the menu in front of her, it didn't matter anymore, she just wanted food.

"Just get her a burger Gordie." The ocean-boy said to the brown-eyed boy who's name was Gordie.

"Fine, Chris." She looked up at them through the mask of hair. Ocean-eyes was Chris and brown-eyes was Gordie. She could remember that much. Her heart jolted when she realized what she had done. She had accepted them. She wanted them around. She wanted to trust them. She folded her arms on the table and rested her head on them. This could not happen, not after what had happened. Not after she had finally gotten away.

A waitress appeared and the look on her face was one of absolute disgust. Chris sat next to her and Gordie and the chubby boy were on the other side. The boy with the glasses was not there; he must have been disgusted and gone home.

"Where are you from?" No response.

"What do you like?" No response.

"Do you have a name?" No response.

"Where are you staying?" No response. Gordie sighed and slouched back in the booth. Chris had his arms folded on the table and she could feel his eyes on the back of her head. She kept her head on her arms until she smelled the food.

When the burger was laid out in front of her she could only stare at it. The grease bubbled over the bun and caused the bread to become soggy. The cheese was melted into the bread and into the burger. The fries on the side were in a large welcoming pile. She picked it up. She stared at it for a second, only to take notice at the state of her gnarled hands, and took a bite. She tried to swallow, but realized her throat was sticky and dry. Her tongue felt like sandpaper. Her eyes widened, but then she saw the drink placed in front of her. She grabbed it and ignored the straw. She guzzled half the soda in about ten seconds.

It took her five minutes to eat the burger and all the fries. The drink was gone in three. The boys just stared at her. She bit her lip and looked at each of them. She tucked her hair behind her ears and continued to stare at the empty plate in front of her, embarrassed.

She saw Gordie sigh and then look at the other two, "She might as well come to my house and clean up right?" Chris and the chubby boy nodded. The boys got out of the booth and helped her out. She walked with them. She didn't want to be led; she wasn't going to run.

Once at Gordie's he led her to the bathroom and handed her a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. He closed the door and she turned to face the rest of the bathroom.

It was small with a simple shower that could also serve as a bath. The mirror wasn't too large and the sink took up most of the counter space. The rest of it was covered in every day necessities. Tooth brush, razor, toothpaste. She raised her eyes to the mirror and took a step back.

Her blonde hair looked brown with all the dirt that had been crushed into it. Her brown eyes were hazy and she had large bruises underneath her eyes. Her face was paler than normal and she had bruises sprouting around her left eye and on her neck. She took off the shirt and the pants and stared. She had bruises all along her torso and on her ankles.

She walked to the shower quickly and turned the water on the highest setting. She stepped in and gasped at the scalding water. She stood in the shower for ten minutes letting her skin turn red and raw. She felt for the shampoo and quickly washed the dirt and grime from her hair. Then she grabbed the bar of soap and went at the rest of her. Once finished she rinsed off the suds and just stood in the water for another few minutes. Then she shut it off and stepped out. She took the white towel on the hook and dried herself off. She put on the clothes Gordie had given her and looked at herself in the mirror again.

Her blonde hair was wet, but it was back to its blonde shade. Her brown eyes seemed more alive, just as they should be. She sat on the toilet seat and began to think. She needed more underwear and a few new bras. She needed money and she needed clothes. She also needed hair dye. She flipped through the dyes in her head and finally decided on one she had always wanted. She was going to go pink. She knew it would help with the blonde already in her hair and if her brother was looking for her, he wasn't going to expect pink.

She opened the bathroom door and let herself smile once, she was going to be okay. She closed the door behind her and started towards what she figured to be Gordie's room. She stepped in and gave him a small smile. His face lit up. She couldn't bring herself to talk yet, but she could give him a smile.

"Now it's time to actually meet the gang."