Chapter 1

Hello. My name is Megan Stratford. I'm sixteen years old. I'm homeschooled. I don't really get out of the house much, other than going to the grocery store, and maybe Target®. I never really made friends, since I'm home schooled, but I don't really care. I don't have a job, since I move a lot, and my mother publishes People and People Stylewatch. And today I'm moving to sunny California with my mother—just us two. My head kept bobbing up and down on the glass window of the car, and unfortunately there was nothing I could do to get it to stop.

The road was bumpy from all the rocks on it. I was used to traveling a lot and going on sandy, grimy, bumpy roads to smooth as silk. This road was the complete opposite of smooth. I know you're thinking that oh, wow, she must have fun traveling on the road looking at all the sites with her brother and sisters and parents! Oh, how fun! Well, I have a news flash for you—that's not my life. At all. I don't have any brothers or sisters for that matter. I used to have a sister. Then a brother; then two sisters and a brother; then back to an only child; then one sister, and know I'm an only child—again. I know you're probably thinking what is she talking about? My mom hasn't really settled down with anyone. She's been through five divorces. Five. She goes too fast, that's her problem. They date for about two months and claim they're in love. They get married and after about three to five months they see differences they don't like and get a divorce. They never work through it. Oh, and the kids who became my step-sisters and step-brothers, hated me. I never really talked to them. I'm more of a quiet type girl.

I've been to Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Tennessee, and North Carolina. My mom, Sarah Stratford, decided it was time for a new life and go live somewhere else for a change. Like we don't already do that, Mom. So now, we're moving to California. I guess I should be happy about moving to California and the beach and all the hot guys and all, but that just isn't me. I don't have a lot of friends from moving frequently. In fact, I have no friends at all—well, except for my mom. What a great friend. Sure, I should be thankful for her and look up to her, but how can I when all she does is date, marry, and then divorce. I don't even have a dad for crying out loud! And then she expects me to go and love her and think she's the best mom ever. I mean sure, she's a good mom and all, but—

"Megan, we're here," My mom, Sarah said. I didn't move a muscle. I just stayed in the same position since I got into the car. "Megan, get up. I mean it." "Ugh," I moaned. Might as well get up, so she doesn't come back and drag me out like she did before. "Megan! Come look at this place! It's wonderful!" said my mother. I looked up, and to my surprise, it actually did look nice. It was in between a medium sized house and a big house. It had stone covering the front of the house, with the double doors in the middle. Tan bricks on the rest of the house, with big windows placed in different spots of the house. It had a nice big green lawn. I was wondering what we were going to do with the house since it's so big and it's only the two of us. Then I realized it would only be a matter of time before we started sharing the house with another guy and maybe his kids. Great.

"Oh, Honey this place is marvelous! I just love it here! Don't you? Oh, I know you will! We have so much to do today! We have to unpack and then we'll have to go—" I tuned my mother out for the next five minutes about how awesome this place is and how this change for us is going to be the best thing that has happened to us. It was the same talk she gave every time we moved somewhere different. I didn't feel like hearing it for the umpteenth time, so I simply walked to the door to go find my room. I found the smallest room I could find, and claimed it as mine.

I finished bringing up all my stuff and started unpacking all my things. Once I was finished I curled up on my bed and went to sleep. I wasn't hungry, didn't want any food, and didn't want to talk to my mom; I just wanted some sleep. No. What I really wanted was to talk to someone. Talk to someone who would understand how I felt, and who would just listen to me, and let me cry it all out. I couldn't talk to my mom about it, she's trying her best. And I don't have any friends, so I just bottled my feelings inside; until finally the tears came, and I couldn't stop them.

My mother walked in the room and saw me crying. She immediately came to my side. "Megan, dear, what's wrong? Are you sick?" my mother asked me.

"No," I lied. "I'm fine, just tired from that car ride. I'm probably a little car sick, that's it." I didn't lie that time. Well—at least it was a half lie. I was tired from the car ride and did feel a little sick from the ride. Most of it though, was from moving from place to place and having dads that last only half a year or less.

"Megan. Megan. Megan!" my mother yelled.

"Huh? What?"

"You spaced out and—" I tuned my mother out—again. I didn't really feel like talking to my mom right now. Just not in the mood. I'm tired from the ride here. I didn't get any rest. Not one minute of sleep. Not one, and if I don't get my sleep, then it doesn't end well. I can think of one time where my mother—

"Megan! What's wrong with you? You look like you have something on your mind. You know you can tell me everything right?" my mother asked me.

"Yeah," Other than that I never have a stable home and parents, I added in my head. "I'm really just tired. That's it. I promise. I'd tell you if there's something going on." I half lied again.

"Okay," My mother had concern written all over her face and her eyebrows were all scrunched up. It made me feel loved, and that all my worries were gone. It vanished as quickly as it had come. "Well where you want to go eat? I'm starved," My mom said.

"Umm, actually, I'm not very hungry. I think I'll just turn in. I've had a long day, already." My mom still looked concerned and she didn't look convinced at all. "I'm fine, really. I love you. Night." I turned over on my side, to indicate that I didn't want to talk anymore and that I was ready to call it a night.

"Ok. But only if you're sure."

"I'm sure. I promise." I said to my mom with a smile. I think I had her convinced. So I yawned to make it more convincing.

"You do look really tired. I guess I'll go. If you want something to eat, there's stuff in the kitchen to make a sand which and there's barbeque chips in the pantry. We only have water, though. Good night. I love you so much." With that she kissed me on the forehead, turned off my light, and closed the door. Once I heard her feet shuffle across the hall and down the steps, I got out from under the cover and turned to my window. My window was pretty big, so I had an amazing view. I couldn't really see the stars that night, so I closed my curtains and fell back on my bed, wondering who the next guy would be, and how he would compare to the other guys my mom's been with. And with that, I drifted off into a deep sleep and didn't wake until morning.

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