|The Life of a Teenage Runaway, Criminal etc etc
Author: HappyHollyWolly PM
You read about the stories of teenage runaways or criminals in magazines and papers. They're not glamorous. That is what Beth Branning's life was like. She's going home, but after four years away, she's in for a shock or two. Or ten.Rated: Fiction T - English - Family/Drama - Tanya B. - Chapters: 8 - Words: 22,596 - Reviews: 19 - Favs: 8 - Follows: 8 - Updated: 06-10-12 - Published: 05-05-12 - id: 8089133
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Summary: You read about the stories of teenage runaway or criminals in magazines and papers. They're not glamorous. That is what Beth Branning's life was like. She's trying to put her derailed life back on track after four years of stealing, drinking and skipping school. She's going back home in the hope her parents will accept her again? But, she has missed a lot in the past few years. So, she's in for a shock.
A/N: I have made Lauren a year younger in this story to suit the time frame, and Jay is year older, making him born on the 8th October 1993 instead of '94. He's still going out with Abi though.
P.s. It is also set in November '11 just to let you new readers know :)
P.p.s Please be kind, this is my first story and first Eastenders story. I have other stories lying about in my computer, but I still have to finish the first chapter, so bare with me, I have plenty coming up from TVD, to GG, to Harry Potter etc etc.
P.p.p.s Plus, I will be posting a character profile soon, in the style of the ones on Wikipedia just so you have all the background info, but it will be after this chapter. I will put in the thingy that it's a Character Profile, so you can skip it if you want :)
P.p.p.p.s Sorry about the tonne of notes, but I'm saying now, that if you guys review you get a shout out in the next chapter (if I don't get writers block like I do with a tonne of things I write and just delete it). But, it's only for verified users, not annonymous users. Sorry about that, but If you say that you're on your iPod or something and not logged in, just review saying you'll post a proper review later or something. I do it all the time, so you're not the only one if you do, do it. No? Okay, it's just me then. Sorry. ANYWAY, here is the story:
I stared out the taxi window as the slowed down in front of a large red building. Looking up I saw it was named 'The Queen Victoria Public House'. Great, cause I need a drink. I've been on a train for several hours next to a very inquizative four year old. There is only so long you can keep you iPod on before he tries to see if he can listen too. Ugh, I hate kids. Especially little four year old, dirty, sticky, 'what's this? what's that?' kids.
"That'll be twelve quid" The driver said
"Twelve pounds?" I question looking at him. Surely it was only down the road I got in.
"Sure, we were stuck in traffic, weren't we?" The taxi driver asked rhetorically "So, come on then" He tapped the heel of his hand with his fingers and whistles, indicating that he wants to be quid. I ran my slender hand over my forehead. I didn't even know if I had twelve pounds to give him. My life isn't glamorous. I have no home. No job. I live on barely anything. Hell, I don't even think I have even ten pounds, I'm that skint right now. That's why I'm going back to my parents.
After four years. I am being forced to go back. I have nothing else. But, I betcha they didn't think I would last four years. In the beginning, I bet they thought I wouldn't even last four days, let alone years. I left when I was fourteen. Fourteen. I had a bad relationship with my little sisters, and an even worse one with my parents, so I just left. Well, they told me that if I was this un-happy, because I kept telling them, sort of, that I should just go. I yelled back fine, and yada yada yada. I left that night. I just packed a few things into a bag and left. I got on a train and have been hopping between different relatives since. I was in school, but wasn't the best students. Sure, I was back in the day, but I hit the teenage years, and everything went down the toilet. I got expelled from three schools for a few different reasons. I was suspended numerous times before that. By the time I got around to sitting my GCSE's, I had skipped school that much, that I only passed two subjects; a D in Art and a C in English. I didn't continue in school, after that. It was me gone out of the system. Then work, I couldn't hold down a job to save my life. Thank God for my uncle who sent me money any time I needed it. But, I have taken enough from him now, and refuse to take anymore. My most recent firing was last week, when my ex-boss told me I was 'a good for nothing lay about, with no good qualities. I failed school. I fail at work and most likely, I'll fail at life'. His words just opened my eyes to the shape that my life had become and told myself that when my money ran out I was going home, repairing my relationships with my immediate family and going to try. Like really try.
I sighed and dug my hands into the pocket of my blue body warmer (www . polyvore . com/It/set?id=48391332). I felt my fingers come against a paper, with a certain texture that I knew it was money. I lifted it out and saw it was only ten pounds.
"Would a tenner do? Honestly I don't think I have anything else right now" I said, knowing the desperation was showing on my face. He gave me a sympathetic look, and took it.
"Fine, just don't be expecting any more taxi rides from me until you have enough money" He said pointing at me.
"Of course" I said grabbing my bags "Thank you"
Exiting the taxi I took in the surroundings. Walford. It was quaint to say the least. Hadn't changed a lot since the last time I was here. I left in late 2007, so I had lived here for over a year before I ran away. I was a naive 14 year old then, now I am a solid 18 year old. Hardened by the cruel reality of being a teenage runaway, but with too much pride to return straight away. I looked down a neighboring street and saw the café. I guessed I probably don't have enough money for a drink, but I might have enough for a sandwich, If I remember the prices right, I'm famished. I flung my backpack around to my hip and reached into the front pocket. I extracted a packet of cigarettes and a lighter, I was in desperate need of one. I try not to do it too much, because basically fags are expensive and I'm not a money tree at the mo. Once I got one I put the packet back into my bag and zipped it up again, throwing it over my shoulder again. I went to light up the fag, that was in my mouth, but the cold late-November wind was blowing and it wouldn't light. I covered the end with my hand and tried again, but felt a body bash into my shoulder. I looked over my shoulder and saw the culprit, a boy no older than me, walking away.
"Oi, watch where you're going, right?" I call out with my cigarette in my hand. He turned around to face me, but continued to walk backwards.
"You're the one who should be watching where you're going, love" He said, before turning back around and going on. I know the face, just the name I can't remember. I have forgotten a lot of the names of the residents here.
"Asshole" I mutter under my breath as I light up my cigarette. I started thinking about how my family would take me being back as I sat outside. My parents, they'll be mad at first, knowing them, but they'll be happy when they come around to the fact that I got my shit together and I'm actually sticking around. My sisters, well, we've always had a complicated relationship. With the three of us so close in age, it was understandable that many's a fight had broken out in the household over use of the bathroom, and hairdryer, and make-up and clothes etc etc. I was born on the 16th January 1994, Lauren on the 29th March 1995 and Abi on the 23rd June 1996. I know, so close together right. There is like fourteen months between Lauren and I, and fifteen between Lauren and Abi. My parents didn't waste any time, did they? As the roll of chemicals slowly burned away to a stub, I went over to the nearest bin and put it out, before throwing it in once it was completely out, not wanting to set the bloody thing on fire, do I? I am starving now. I go in to see the café is still pretty much the same as it was before I left.
"How can I help you?" The man asked, while looking down counting his money at the till. Of course, I can't forget Ian Beale. The greedy little man chased me halfway down the street for taking an apple from the stall when I was thirteen. I still giggle in my head at the memory. I had a few good memories here. A lot of them with his daughter Lucy, who was practically my only friend. He obviously hadn't notice me standing in front of him or else he'd be chasing me out.
"I'm have just a ham sandwich, please, Ian" I told him and he looked up, curious as to who was addressing so casually. He looks up at me, as I stand with my hands in my body warmer pockets and leaning more on my left leg.
"Beth, you're back?" He asked me, kind of shocked. I guess everyone really thought I wouldn't last that long. My parents probably thought four days, as I said. But soon those 4 days turned into 4 weeks, then months, then next thing I knew it's been almost 4 years, on the 2nd December to be exact, since I've been home or had contact with my immediate family, meaning, mum, dad, Lauren, Abi or my older half-brother Bradley. I also had another sibling as my mum was pregnant when I left, so I never met him or her. I don't even know. I never asked so I was never told.
"Yep" I said popping my 'p' "And that sandwich?"
"Yeah, it'll be four pounds" He said
"Four pounds, last time I was here it was three?" I asked, kind of shocked at the price rise, well, of course it was Ian Beale.
"Inflation, plus you still have to pay me for that Apple" He said holding out his hand.
"Touché" I smiled, while reaching into my pocket, yet again and grabbing the handful of coins that lay in it. I stood counting them out, which, luckily enough, made up four quid exactly.
"So, how long are you back for?" He asked, after telling the other woman working there to make it. Seriously, does her not think I'm going to stick around.
"Hopefully for good" I said, giving him an evil smirk. To him, I was a bad influence on perfect Lucy, when in fact a lot of the things we got up to, were her idea.
"Here you go" He said "I guess I'll be seeing you around then?"
"Yeah, maybe" I said going and sitting down at a table in the corner of the café.
I stood just outside the Vic, looking at my old house. It hadn't changed much at all. I could even see a white Christmas tree in the front window. I had little good memories in this place. My parents splitting up because of Stacey, the constant fights and arguments, being brought home in the back of a police car because I was caught shoplifting. Speaking of which, I watched at the police car rolled past me and around the square. What resident had been arrest or is about to be this time? Then it stops outside the house. My house. I see my mum, looking quite ill if you ask me, come barging out the door, followed by Grandma Cora and Aunt Rainie.
"Is it Lauren? Is she okay?" I could just about hear my mum say coming out. The policeman must have spoken to her because she tucked her hair behind her ear and replied "Lauren Branning, my daughter"
"She told her name was Abigail" I heard the policeman say louder this time, and saw Abi's head appear above the roof of the police car. My mouth fell open. Abi arrested? No way. There must be a mistake.
"What do you know? It got worse" Grandma Cora said, standing there with her arms crossed. I see Rainie's eyes peer across the square, looking for anyone who may have witnessed this, then her eyes land on me. They widen in shock of seeing her eldest niece standing just across the square. I see her mumble something to Grandma, and her eyes also land on me. I could see her mouth say "Bloody Hell" just I realize, now may be the best chance. I don't want to just appear at the door.
"Mum" I called out and start jogging through the gardens. She was walking up the steps with Abi, when she stops and turns around, dagger eyes searching in every direction "Mum" I say again, stopping at the nearest gate to the house, just where she can see me. Shock fills her face as she notices me. I smiled weakly at her. This is the closest I have been to her in years. I almost gave up 18 months ago and made it to the East End.
"Bethany Branning" The police officer said, also seeing me. I saw his face then. It was Officer Chadwick. He arrested me when I came back to the East End, but I gave my Aunt Suzy's address in Essex as my home. I couldn't come home like that. It wasn't right "I hope you're staying out of trouble"
"Yeah, Officer. I've, ugh" I said looking over at my family who were staring at me "I've been trying my best"
"I see it runs in the family then" Officer Chadwick says and turns to mum "No complaints are being lodged, just keep her out of trouble, and her too" He slided back into the car then. My mum couldn't even speak. The shock of Abi being arrest and me being home after four years just got to her and no sound could escape her. As the police car drove away, I began crossing the street to my mum.
"Beth" Mum sighed before going over to me, and enveloping me in her arms. I smiled bigger at her reaction. I guess she really missed me, but the anger will come soon. I'll be grounded for the next two months, I'm guessing, as that's all I have left until I'm 18. Then she and dad have no power over me. I will be an adult. Tears formed in my eyes. This was the first time in years that I cried happy tears. I have crying, so many times, from money worries, to home sickness, to my old d-bag of a boss calling me worthless. Nothing was happy in my life until this moment. I was home.
Mum pulled away, but kept a girl on my arms. "You're back" She cried. All I could do was nod. I lifted my hands and wiped my eyes. I hated to ruin the moment, but I have grown up over the years, and know that me coming back wasn't as big as Abi being arrested.
"Mum" I said, and she 'mm'd in replied, looking at me "I think you're forgetting Abi was arrested"
"Oh yes, of course" She said turned around to her. I smiled at this, it was nice. Not like it was when before I was Abi's age "Abi, just get inside now, I'll talk to you in a few minutes"
"Come on" Rainie said escorting Abi into the house, after Grandma Cora went in herself.
"Alright, I'll put on some tea and we'll have a talk about this" Mum said, going onto a more serious note. Well it was nice while it lasted...