My arm hung limply as I got nearer and nearer to Forks, Washington. Mom had gotten married and I was happy- that is, until I was brutally kicked out of the flock for who knows why.

Flash Back

No one spoke as we all ate a crispy couple of Rats.

The kids refused to look at me, Iggy had advantage there because he couldn't look at me, and Fang was glowering at me from across the fervid flames.

"What?" I asked, irritation rising in my chest.

"You know what!" Iggy snapped angrily. Nudge and Gazzy nodded, a cold look set in their eyes. I was utterly confused.

I looked to Angel for an explanation, but flinched when I saw how she was glaring at me. It wasnt just a glare- her glare was full of hate. Full of acid. If looks could kill, the great Maximum Ride wouldn't be so great anymore.

"Angel?" I breathed. She hardened her glare. I looked to Fang. He stared at me across the fire with his angry expression, his eyes glazed with black fury.

He looked at Angel for a second, and she gave a brief nod. Her eyes bored into mine.

We want you gone, Max. Angel thought at me. My eyes widened and I shot up from the floor, no one took any notice.

"What? Why?" I gasped, staring only at Angel.

You know why. She set her mouth in a hard line, and I slowly fell into the black hellhole surrounding me, leaving my flock staring at me with the most hate I'd ever seen from them.

And it was dirested toward me.

End Flashback

I shuddered mid air, remembering how I'd woken up in the forest, being thrust against a tree by a very giddy looking Eraser. He had raked a claw from my shoulder to my wrist, it was bleeding furiously, dripping into the forest below. My eyes found, far below, a white house with a huge Chevy truck in the driveway. This was it.

I lowered in the woods and walked about a hundred feet to the house. My throat was tight as my good arm pressed the doorbell, hearing a little ding-dong that made me wonder who came up with doorbells in the first place.

The door opened slowly, and a very happy Ella flounced out, thrusting her arms around me. "Max! Oh, my God. You're here! I was thinking you'd come visit much later, but..." Ella stopped hugging me as the blood from my arm oozed it's way onto her's. I could've mistaken her eyes for fancy Iris dinner plates.

She threw her arm around my shoulders and pulled my inside. Ella pushed me down into a kitchen chair. Another girl- probably the new stepsister Ella had told me about- sat, staring wide eyed at my arm. She was doing homework across the table, and I smiled sheepishly.

Ella stood in front of the staircase. "Mom! Max is here! She's hurt!"

"Not so loud..." I murmured. I'd gotten so used to the penatrating silence, I'd forgotten what it was like to be around screaming children all the time. Not that Ella was a child, but-

"Max! Max, what happened?" Mom grabbed my arm and took a horrified look at it. She looked up at me impatiently waiting for an answer. I peered at Bella, I think that was her name, hesitantly.

Mom looked at Bella, too and said quickly. "Ella, can you and Bella go shopping or something? I've got to talk to our guest." Ella nodded, stiff as a soldier, and hustled a confused Bella out of the room. Ah, so her name was Bella.

"Max, what happened?" Mom asked. "Where is the flock? Why aren't they with you?"

"I got jarred by an Eraser after Angel knocked me sensless after she declaired the flock was kicking me out." I said hurridly, avoiding mom's eyes.

"They... kicked you out?" Mom asked in angry awe.

"Yeah," I wished she would let go of my arm. "Mom, that hurts."

She realized how hard she was squeezing my bloody arm and quickly let go, rushing over to her medical supplies. She bandaged it up after putting some antobiotic -which I still loathe smelling- on it. I was glad she had decided to drop the whole flock thing, at least, for now.

She allowed me to stay with them. But, as she had so smartly said, on one condition.

That condition was...

"What!?" I shreiked. "Go to school?" Mom nodded. I had agreed to introduce myself to everyone, but a school?

"Yes, Max, an actual school." She smiled.

I stared at her in shock. Did she not remember last occurance?

She rolled her eyes. "Max, I've made sure this school was safe and secure. Don't worry."

I did trust her.... but then again, I trusted the flock a teensy bit more. Hey- don't give me that look! I knew them way before I knew my own mom!

Anyway... I agreed. Sadly, I had also agreed to go to a cook out down in, uh, La Push, was it? Yeah, I think that's what they called it....

Ella and Bella - Ha, how ironic, right?- had come home, and soon after, Charlie.

Mom stood in the middle of the kitchen while they all sat, looking confused. Except for Ella, who was jumping with excitement.

"Everyone, this is Max. She is my other daughter and will be staying with us from now until..." She looked at me, I didn't remove my gaze from the floor. "Well, until she decides otherwise."

Slightly, my lips curved up. Maybe this wouldn't be so bad. In only five minutes, I had been introduced to everyone, and was happier than I'd been since the flock had expelled my from the group.

Like I said, maybe this wouldn't be so bad.