Hey again :D I'm happy to say that I'll be turning this into a full-fledged fic! I couldn't just leave a oneshot hanging in the air like that ;) (Besides, this just has so much 'angst' potential) lol. I just realized how short this one is, but hopefully the rest of the chapters should be long.


No…no, Danny, I can explain- just-,"

Without even thinking, I jumped to my feet and ran blindly past my stammering dad, past my mom who had appeared at the top of the stairs and who was asking what was going on, and up to my bedroom, where I slammed the door and threw myself on the bed.

Incomprehensible thoughts spun chaotically in my head, clashing violently into each other. My head was throbbing as blood rushed to my brain. Through all my panic and confusion, two words kept running tirelessly through my mind…

I'm adopted.

I'm adopted.

I'm adopted.

I wasn't living my real life. I should have been somewhere else right now, with a different family. Jazz wasn't really my sister. Jack and Maddie weren't really my parents.

The image of Andrew and Jazz floated ceaselessly through my head…her gentle smile, his hair glimmering in the sun. I hated that image. I wanted to take it in my hands and viciously tear it apart. I wanted rip up the moment of perfect happiness and delight that had been captured in the photo. I wanted to shred it into thousands of little pieces and then glue it all back together while somehow trying to insert myself in the memory.

My eyes started to burn and my throat tightened as the words echoed silently in my head.

I'm adopted.

I'm adopted.

I'm adopted.

My fists were clenched tightly. Tears began to stream down my face. How could this have happened to me? One moment, I was living a perfectly normal, ordinary and boring life, and the next I was whirling down a spiral of desolation.

Suddenly, I heard the door of my bedroom slowly creak open.

"May I come in?" I heard my 'mother's' timid voice ask.

I wanted to take my pillow and throw it at her so hard that it would fall apart at the seams. I felt like slamming the door in her face and then hiding under my bed like I used to when I was a kid. Deep down, I was disgusted with myself for feeling that way towards someone who wanted to do nothing but help me, and yet on the surface, I couldn't bring myself to care.

"Go away!" the words came out strangled and tear-ridden.

"Danny, please!" the words were stronger this time, the plea in her voice was more prominent.

"Just leave!" I yelled. I wanted her to go away so I could cry and sob and angrily throw things at the wall in peace.

The door squeaked and she entered the room.

"What do you want?" I snapped angrily, trying to gulp back tears.

"Danny, we need to talk," she started calmly.

"No! No, we don't! There's nothing to talk about! You lied to me for fifteen years and that's it. End of the story!" I yelled furiously.

A few silent moments passed, and then, despite my best efforts not to, I started crying. I stuffed my face into my pillow and pulled the covers over me, trying to hide my tears from her. My face was burning and my ears were red with heat.

"Danny, I know this is a shock for you. It's a bit of a shock for us too. We never imagined you'd find that old album."

"So you never even planned on telling me…" I muttered into my pillow. It was more of a statement than a question.

"Of course we did, sweetie. Just…just not like this…"

I couldn't respond. In my heart, I knew she meant no harm, but I couldn't help but feel hatred towards her. After all, she'd been lying to me for years, playing me for a fool.

"Look, I know you don't really want to talk right now," she started, "So maybe we should have this discussion another time. I just wanted to tell you that I love you, Danny. You're father loves you too. And we never meant for this to happen."

"Can you just go?" I found myself asking, a little more harshly than I'd meant to.

I heard Maddie sigh as she rose from the bed and headed for the door.

"We'll talk later, sweetie. Supper will be ready soon; wash up and come down to the kitchen." And with that, she left the room.

As soon as I was sure that she'd left the room, I emerged from under the covers. Slowly, I rose from my bed and headed for my closet. I opened the closet door and rummaged through a pile of old CDs until I found the one I'd been looking for: DUMPTY HUMPTY: LOST FOREVER. I felt my way around my room until I returned to my bed, (it was getting dark and the power was still out). Pulling my CD player from under my bed and pressing the eject button, I slipped the disc into the drive. Then, I skipped all the way to track 9 and turned up the volume.

Feeling somewhat comforted, if not protected by the presence of my music, I laid back on my bed and slipped my palms under my head. I let my eyelids close as the lyrics of the only ballad on the album washed over me. I was tired of worrying. I wanted to relax and forget about everything…just drift off into the music…just fall asleep…

I don't wanna be lost forever

In an endless sea of strife

I must ask myself, however

Can I keep living this life?