So, my first story.(: Please comment, criticize, suggest. Haha, any response is a good response. I'm hoping to get chapters up regularly, so yeah. & all the newsies in this chapter, except for Spot are mine. No copyright infringement intended, or whatever.

"Mel. Mel. Melanie." A rough voice sounded through my dreams, tearing me from the abyss of my imagination. "Please, get up."

My eyes struggled to open, as they revealed my brother, leaning against the post at the end of my bunk. "Up!" He said, looking at me hard, and tossing me my skirts.

I groaned, flipping over and dragging my torso up into a sitting position. I looked to the bunk to my right, and saw Bricks fiddling with his cigar, and spinning around a sleeve of matches. He saw me watching, and grinned loosely. "Mornin' sunshine." He grabbed the edge of the bed, and stood up, hitting the side of the my bunk. "It's a beautiful day, rise and shine."

Sarcasm, i concluded, looking out the window to the cold February morning. I stumbled into the bathroom in my nightgown, shoving a few older boys aside. I pulled my skirts and blouse on in a stall, and went out to stare at my reflection.

I had the same dirty blonde hair as Johnny's, my brother, and it was, for the most part wavy, though the morning left it in a state of disarray. I ran a hand through it and mussed it up, as I stared back into my own deep gray eyes.

My brother loped over, splashing water on his face. "Ready?" He spat out, rubbing at the scruff on his chin.

"Mmhm." I rubbed at my eyes, and fixed my hair to look somewhat nice. I turned and walked into the bunk room, where Spot and Bricks were scheming in the corner, and Skits and Jacob were helping the little guys.

"Mel!" A small voice called, and I spun around, looking down. Caleb was there, and little boy who I had found around 2 months ago huddled in an alley somewhere. He had big brown eyes, chocolate hair that was poking past his brow, and he was about 10 years old. In other words, super cute.

"Hey, hun. What'sa matter?" I started to pull on my boots as i slumped on a bunk, lacing them snugly.

"Do you- uh, you t-think that i can s-sellwihttheotherkidsMel?" He said, energetically bouncing up and down, stumbling over his words as he fiddled with his suspenders.

I laughed, plopping my feet down, and pushing myself up. "Ask Spot. And if he asks, i think you're more than tough enough." I bent down and poked him in the nose. He beamed, running off to tell Nathan and the other kids. The mostly sold together in a pack, and one of the older kids would join them regularly. He had been selling with me, it had taken him a couple of weeks to stop flinching at every sound and touch. He had acclimated well and fast after though, considering the company and lodgings.

"Talking about me, Melanie?" Spot walked up beside me, bumping me on the shoulder.

"Yup. Me and the kids are starting a rebellion. Watch out, Conlon."

He chuckled, punching me in the arm. "Better watch it, Mel. You can stay here and clean all day...?" He trailed off, grinning.

I glared, but shut my mouth, and shuffled over to Johnny, who was talking with Skits. He looked at me, raising his eyebrows. "You sellin today?" He nodded towards Spot, referring to our exchange.

"Yes..?" I said, slightly unsure, turning towards Spot and smiling sweetly. He just laughed and nodded, walking towards the door, which was the signal for everyone to head out.

Johnny and Skits laughed as we walked out into the morning.

"You can just get away with anything, can't ya?" Skits said, watching his breath puff out.

Johnny smiled, but shook his head. "Just watch. One of these days, she's gonna get us both thrown out." I hugged my coat around closer and giggled, as he nudged me into Skits. Skits returned the favor and soon i was being pushed back and forth. I didn't mind though; it warmed me up, and made me forgot the cold.

We reached the distribution center, and watched as Spot went to the front of the line, tapping his cane, and walking such an unswerving confidence and arrogance that set me over the edge. I think that's why we bickered. While all in good fun, we both had big personalities. Though he always had the upper hand, being leader.

Like, Johnny i thought. He was an overprotective brother, being my elder by 2 years. We had gone through a lot together, but thats another story for another time.

We got our papes, and Johnny looked at me. "Sell with me today?" He phrased it as a question, but i knew it useless to refuse.

"Sure!" I tried to be enthusiastic, but i was tired of this.

It used to be different, where it didn't really matter whether or not i was with Johnny or Skits or someone. Back when we were in Manhattan, but again, another story for another time.