Miles Barnett let out a sigh as he crawled his tired body out of his warm bed. He always seemed tired now. Always wanted to sleep. Maybe it was because it took his mind off things. Maybe.

He could hear the stereo blasting in his sister, Savannah's room which gave him the impression that it was at least two in the afternoon on a Saturday. Normally, his mother would be hollering for him around 8:30 in the morning but ever since the hospital they had been lenient with him, which was a more than welcome change from their normal overprotective ness which had driven him to the usual teenage rebellion.

Miles quickly got dressed contomplating going down to the beach when he heard a crash downstairs. He cracked open his door, hearing various screams from downstairs. His mom and dad were fighting. Miles knew that their relationship had been stressed for the past year or so, even before Nimrod came, but he had never heard them like this before. About 20 seconds after he heard his father slam the front door, and as he walked to his window, he saw the red BMW pull out of the driveway.

He let out a sigh pulling on Kachi shorts and a white Abercrombie shirt as he walked out the front door, not muttering a word.

As he walked to Carol Beach in his home state of North Caroline he couldent help but be upset. He felt like an inside part of him was dieing along with his parents relationship, a part that if it parished, he was certain could never be revived.

He sat down on the beach, sticking his feet in the sand, it being warm on the surface, cooler on the bottom. He closed his eyes, leaving back using his arms as a pillow.

He must of fallen asleep because when he woke up, he felt a sharp painful sting all over his body. As he opened his eyes, they declared the worst- A painful sunburn covering the entirety of his front side. He groaned as he lifted himself off of the ground, his skin feeling constricted, tight, almost as if it was too small for his body.

Judging by the sun, it was about 8:00 at night, it getting dark outside. Either his parents were so worried that his mother was going to have a brain anurism, ot they hadn't even noticed that he was gone. Number two seemed more desirable in his oppinion.

All he had to do was sneak into his bed without being seen, and it all roses and lollipops from there.

But of coarse his mother and father would notice the flaiming redness all over his body. His memory flickered to when he was six years old. He had stayed a summer with his Aunt Mallory in Flordia and had gotton a horrid sunburn the night before he was to return home. His Aunt wasn't exactally the most responsible person in the family, and she had put this stuff on his skin, to avoid the heat of her getting yelled at by her sister, and when he woke up the next morning, the burns were gone.

He walked into the beachfront store, catching the view of someone lieing on the counter as he walked in, the bell going off at the door. "Were closed."

"Are you sure?" Miles asked "It says open until ten on the front door"

"Yeah, well. That's not on the sabbath."

"It's Saturday" Miles stated

"Maybe I'm Jewish" The person he now recognize as a girl around his age said.

"Oh. Right. Sorry." Miles said, noticing the awkwardness of the situation. "I'll come back- Umm.. Nevermind. Sorry." As he made his way to the door the girl muttered.

"Just be quick- alright?"

"Actually I don't know what I am looking for" Miles muttered "Something for a sunburn"

"Alright" The girl said, walking into the back returning several seconds later with a bottle of clear liquid. As she faced Miles a huge smile burst out on her face as she began laughing hysterically. "Have Mercy" she smiled as Miles said nothing breath almost taken away.

The girl was beautiful. There was no other way to describe her. She had miraculous green eyes, almost luminous in their own sence, and beautiful pin straight brown hair interwoven with crimson and honey. She was tanned by the sun wearing a black tank top, white knee length skirt, and white cork sandles that added atleast three inches onto her height, which even witht he help was just pushing average height. She was thin, almost too thin, but athletic, an obvious runner. She had a heart shaped face, and angular side swept bangs framing it. It gave her a sence of mystery.

The smile faded as she muttered "4.75" as Miles handed her a five, muttering "Ouch" as he rubbed the Aloe Vera concotion all over his body.

"Bite the Bullett, Soldier" The girl stated as he read the name on her name tag. Emma. Just Emma, nothing else. Of coarse, a girl this excuisite didn't really need a last name, did she.

"I'm Miles by the way"

"I know-" Emma stated. "Your sister used to date my brother""

"Who's that?"

"Jake Mallare" She said. "They broke up about a month ago. Well. Sort of."

"What Happened?" Miles asked, not having the faintest recolection of him.

"He died."

"Oh." Miles said ovbiously taken aback. "I'm sorry-"

"Why. It wasn't your fault"

"Yeah. I know." Miles stated. "It's just what people say when something bad happens, you know. I'm sorry."

"You should think for yourself, Miles." Emma stated Ït's that rich private school. They're brainwashing you."

"So I guess you go to Eisenhower?" Miles smiled

"God, No.I go to Brandon."

Miles smirked. Somehow, he hadn't seen that one comming. People who went to Brandon Public Schools were considered to be the ones that were from 'The wrong side of the tracks.''

Emma must of seen his reaction because she smiled. "Yeah. I know. Brandon makes Eisenhower look like the freakin' Marriott when they're compared, but it's not that bad."

"Twenty One kids were just expelled for using Cocaine-"

"It was actually twenty seven-" Emma said matter-of-factly. "But it's good to know that the news is watered down before it reaches the rich schools. But not all kids at Brandon are like that-"

"Name one-" Miles challenged.

"Me" She said simply. Miles face said the obvious. He hadn't expected that answer. "Now, granted. I used to do drugs and drink and stuff like that, but that isn't my scene. Unless I'm having a bad day. " She smiled. "Then I enjoy a shot of Tëquila as much as the next girl." She paused. "But something tells me, Miles that that's not your scene either."

"Nah." Miles said "I'm not really considered at the top of the socil chain of the school- But even if I was invited to a party- I don't think I would do that"

"I don't think you would either" Emma stated as she looked down at the counter. All of a sudden she seemed very quiet and conserved.

"You alright?" Miles asked.

"Yeah" Emma stated "Ï just have to get home.

"I'll walk you-"Miles stated. As Emma flicked the light switch off and grabbed the keys, locking up the doors behind them she said simply.

"I don't think you'd do to well on my part of town-"And with that, she walkd off into the distance.


As Miles made his way up the stairs of his house only glancing into the kitchen for a second, he saw his mother in the same place where she was when he had left that morning. He walked to his sisters room, knocking on the door.

"Come in-"Savannah said as Miles walked in seeing his Sixteen-Year-Old sister at the computer typing in her pajamas. A Michigan University sweatshirt and pants hair in a pony tail.

"Savannah?" Miles spoke, trying to sound innocent. "How long have you and Ross been going out"

"About seven months-"Savannah said coolly "Not that it's any of your business"

"So then you wouldn't know anything about Jake Mallare-"

Her typing stopped. "Get out of my room, Miles"


"Get out" She screamed, pushing Miles out of her room and shutting the door.