Jane glanced over the top of her canvas and smirked as the announcer introduced the latest Sick Sad World story. Daria had kept her word and had arrived at her house an hour prior and they had both agreed that a lazy day in, watching television was the best way to waste the day. Jane had been relieved; the forecast for the day had predicted an unseasonal warm, sunny day and she wasn't ready to oust herself to the world. She had also been thankful at Daria's choice of bad TV, she was slowly realizing there was more to Daria than met the eye, she only hoped Daria would be more understanding then her last so called friend if or when she ever learned the truth.

Jane was called out of her contemplative silence by her older brother's voice as it trailed down the hall into her room.

"... And I need you to help me collect the dinner later. I don't care if you refuse to eat..." Trent's voice trailed off as he stood on the threshold of his sister's room and saw Daria. He rubbed his neck nervously as his eyes shifted from Daria to Jane. "Ah, Janey?"

"Yo," Jane replied uneasily, her brow furrowed as she shot a look of warning toward Trent. "You remember Daria, right?" she waved the pointed end of her custom-made steel paint brush at Daria.

"Mmm, hey Daria." he nodded in Daria's direction and looked back toward Jane, his eyes bore into hers. "I didn't know you were here," his tone matched Jane's. "Jane, you mind if I have a word with you, in private?"

Jane set her paintbrush down in the rusted old can of turpentine and turned to Daria. "You mind?"

Daria shrugged, "Sure, I was going to ask if you had any refreshments anyway, I wouldn't mind a soda or something,"

"You can check the fridge, if not the tap waters pretty clean here." Jane knew full well that Daria would find nothing in the fridge, but sensed that she'd need the time to talk to Trent.

"As long as it isn't laced with uranium, it's better than the drinking water from my last home." Daria stood and adjusted her skirt then crossed the room. The look that Trent gave Jane as Daria passed him hadn't gone unnoticed.

Both Jane and Trent watched her go and waited for the sound of her footsteps descending the staircase before either of them moved or spoke.

"Trent, what the hell, you have to be more careful." Jane hissed.

Trent raised his hands in defence. "Sorry, look I need you to help me tonight, I don't trust myself alone and since you fed last night you'll have better self control."


Daria entered the kitchen and wrinkled her nose in disgust at the thick layer of dust that blanketed the surfaces of the countertops and disused appliances. Jane had said something about her parents being artsy nomadic types, and it was only her and Trent living at home. By the appearance of the kitchen and most of the house, they had been living alone for quite some time. How Child Services had let this one slip was beyond her.

Hesitantly she approached the fridge and opened it. Her hopes of finding anything were low, with good reason. She found nothing that could be considered ingestible by any living creature. She sighed and tried the freezer; it was as empty as the fridge. As she closed the door, a small frozen pool of, what Daria thought was blood, caught her eye. She leaned in closer to get a better look.

"Nah..." she muttered quietly. "It's got to be something else, cranberry juice?"

Daria shook her head and closed the door. She turned and retrieved a glass from the cupboard, dusted it off and turned on the tap. The pipes groaned as the water was pushed through them. 'Strange, almost like they haven't been used in...' her thoughts were interrupted by a spluttering cough of the tap as the water began to shake out of it. The water was brown and rusty.

She grimaced as she turned the handle of the tap, put the glass back and returned to Jane's room. Daria was confident that she had given the siblings enough time to talk.

As she reached the top landing of the staircase she heard the strained whispers of the Lanes.

"I don't know how you could slip up like that," Jane said in disbelief.

"I didn't know she was here," Trent shot back, his voice rose slightly as anger radiated through his words.

"Couldn't you hear her?"

"She wasn't talking," Trent said sarcastically.

"You know what I mean, don't be a smart-ass Trent." Jane said sternly.

"I couldn't, I can't hear her. Nothing at all- this has never happened before. Anyway didn't you know I was coming in here, didn't you foresee it? You could have stopped me before I started talking."

"You know it doesn't work that way. I only get flashes sometimes; you can hear people's thoughts all the time."

Daria stood to the side of Jane's door and peered at the two feuding siblings through the small crack in the door, a million thoughts raced through her brain. 'Jane can see into the future? Trent can read thoughts? What the hell is going on here? What if they know I'm here, watching them?' Daria's face flushed a crimson red with her last thought.

"Jane, I just told you. I can't hear Daria's thoughts. The only indication I have that she's around is that I can..." he paused, closed his eyes and inhaled deeply.

"You can what?" Jane asked.

Trent opened his dark onyx eyes and set them on the crack of the door, directly into Daria's own eyes. She jumped, startled as she realized she had been caught eavesdropping on a conversation that was not, under any certain circumstances meant for her ears.

"Trent, you can what?" Jane asked once again her patience waning.

"I can smell her when she blushes, all that blood goes to her face..." he said in a low whisper, so Daria couldn't hear.

Jane looked at Trent with uncertainty then to the crack in the door; she saw the reflected ray of light bounce off Daria's glasses as she boldly entered the room.

"I should go, I told Mom that I'd let her take me shopping this afternoon, I forgot all about it. See you on Monday, bye." Daria said, her words were rushed, each one flowing into the next. The Lanes stood still, watched Daria collect her things and flee their house.

Daria had reached the front door before the thought struck Jane. She turned to Trent and slapped him, hard, across the arm. "You idiot, she heard us. What if... what if..." Jane stared down at the floor.

"You'll have to deal with it." Trent replied darkly as he crossed the room and pulled back the curtain on the window to watch Daria's small form retreat down the road.