Chapter 1

Angry and Defensive Claire

Claire POV

"Claire, Claire?" Ugh just leave me alone, I thought, as the Wyoming sunshine blared through my window. "Claire!" a very annoyed voice yelled. "I am not quite ready for screaming yet, but thank you for the kind gesture," I said sarcastically and groggily. The sarcasm was just a part of being sixteen, I guess. "Finally, you're up." Now that I'm fully awake I can recognize the voice as…ugh, my little half-sister Vivvian, the last person to brighten my day. "Hello you lazy lump of lard, how is your morning," Vivvian sarcastically asked. "It was going just fine until I heard your voice," I retorted.

I look up to see a scowl on Vivvian's face, and then I catch a tear roll down her cheek and her face crumple. This breaks my heart and I softly say, "Oh sweetheart I didn't mean it I'm just not in a very good mood this morning, I'm sorry." Vivvian is nine and very sensitive, but her words can be pretty acidic at times. The only way not to make a big deal out of it is just to roll with it.

"Claire!" my mother yells. "I didn't do it!" I yell out of instinct. Oh she wants me to come down stairs, I suddenly realize. I mentally slap myself for that. I quickly ran down stairs before Vivvian's dad, Derek, could come up and drag me down stairs himself. I was supposed to call him dad, but I will probably die before I even accidentally call that ass "dad". It's not Vivvian's fault that she had a horrible dad; she would've been with her mom if she hadn't died in a fire.

But anyway, as I hit the bottom step my mom said, "Claire, I need to talk to you." I stopped and stood there, "Ok, what is it," I asked. " First say good morning to your father," she demanded. "Good morning scumbag," I said and immediately regretted it. Before I could even blink Derek was out of his chair and had already smacked me across the face before I could leap away. I ended up on the floor, with my back against the wall, rubbing my cheek which was stinging.

My mother was such a lousy person. She just stood there, flipping breakfast in her pan. I really wanted to leave this place. My mother's yelling yanked me out of thought. "Claire! Get off your lazy butt and set the table, geez." I did as I was told so I could avoid another beating session. As Vivvian was walking down the stairs, Derek said, "Hey Claire, why don't you get your sweet self over here, fill my plate and tell your mama to stop being a lazy cow." Apparently mom wasn't going fast enough for the ass. Vivvian being sensitive screamed, "Don't you dare talk to my sister like that and don't you ever talk about my mother like that!"

And then the unthinkable happened, that man got up, walked over to my sister, pushed her down and stepped on her arm like it was a twig. With a sickening crack her arm broke and she cried out in pain. I grabbed a near-by pan and with all my force, beat Derek's head till it bled.

I quickly picked up my sister and ran for our room. I locked the door and began shoving our clothes into a bag. After I was finished I dropped our bag onto the roof. I picked up poor Vivvian and hopped out the window, onto the roof. I carefully slid off the roof, avoiding the kitchen window. After my feet were safely on the ground, I was sprinting. I didn't know where to go or what to do, so I just kept running.