Man, I hate homework. Seriously, Mrs Wallis expects me to study 'Lord of the Flies', when I have my own studies to attend to. My Dad is making me read this old dusty book about European Folklore. To be honest, I'm having more fun reading the folklore book. If Sam was reading 'Lord of the Flies' to me, then I would be more interested. I'll I know about that story, is it's about a group of school kids would get stranded on a desert island, and one half of the group goes completely crackers. I used to love story telling from Sam, since he has a way with words. Our favourite book overall, has to be 'To Kill A Mockingbird.'

Sam's ideal father is obviously Atticus Finch, and I don't blame him. Atticus Finch is an intelligent humanitarian, who doesn't sugar coat things for his children. Compare him to my own Dad, who is a brash functioning alcoholic, who still treats me like a little kid, who can't tie their own shoe laces.

"Are you alone, Chris?" asked Sam curiously, from the other end of the phone line. "Where is Dad and Dean? Are you alright?"

I rolled my eyes, as I lounged on the small couch, with my sock clad feet propped up on the arm of the couch. Dad and Dean left the motel around 1 hour ago, believing that my focus would remain on my English homework. To hell with that, I thought. Bored, I decided to call Sam, just for a normal conversation for once. I really miss him.

"I'm fine, Sam," I sighed in reply, as I fiddled with the hole in my right sock. "How are things at Stanford?"

After a brief download on all things California, Sam returned to his original question, on whether I was alone in the motel or not.

"I'm holding the fort while Dad and Dean are out. They're in the desert at the moment, taking down a Catoblepas," I answered, truthfully. "Dad says its this large bull type creature from Ethiopia. How the hell it's in Las Vegas, I don't know. Either way, Dad wouldn't let me join in the hunt. Probably because the Catoblepas is venomous."

I could hear a grumble coming from the other end of the line. Sam clearly wasn't impressed that I was left alone, again, but deep down he knew it was for the best. He didn't want me to get hurt. Nobody in my family wanted that.

"Just wanting to make sure you're safe, Chris," said Sam. "You know how much I worry about you."

I sat up, and crossed my legs. Hearing Sam's voice made me miss him even more.

"Anyway, Chris, I gotta go, I need to finish this assignment I need to hand in the morning" added my brother, with hints of sadness in his voice.

I sighed once again, my eyes becoming misty with developing tears, yet I refused to cry. I didn't want Sam to hear me cry.

"Bye, Sammy" I mumbled.

Another sigh came from my brother's end of the line. It hurt him to say goodbye, just as much as it hurt me.

"Bye, sweetie, look after yourself," replied Sam. "I'll call you soon."

Later that evening, I was starting to get hungry. Dad had forgotten to leave me money, in case I wanted to order take out. Also, regardless to how thorough I checked, the refrigerator; freezer and cupboards, all were bare empty. Apart from a tin of baked beans that it. I emptied the tin into a small pot, and began to heat them on the grimy gas stove.

Whilst humming to myself, my mind began to wander, therefore my attention to the stove was neglected. Only when the palm of my right hand received a small, yet sharp burn, did my attention return to the stove.

"Sonofabitch!" I cursed, as I ran my hand under the cold tap. "Screw the cowboy food! What am I? John Wayne? Dammit Dad, you'd said Dean stocked the cupboards this morning! Bullshit! What am I supposed to do now? Call UNICEF, and tell them I'm a starving, needy kid?"

My eyebrows furrowed into my infamous scowl, as I glared at my bright pink palm. I gazed up the motel room. It was the worse room yet, but after Dad lost a poker game, it was all he could afford at the time. Besides, according to him, we were only gonna be here for four days tops, and yet here we are, three weeks later.

That night, I wriggled into my Pokemon night dress. I held my jeans in front of me. After three years, it was safe to say that I needed a new pair of jeans. Would be sad, but they had served me well. Kids at school teased me about my oversized, and old clothes. I've even developed a new nickname; besides 'Birdbrain', because I daydream a lot; 'Scrappy Doo' , because I fight in the playground during recess; and 'Runt', because I'm small and skinny. Now, I get called 'Hand-Me-Down', because of how I dress. Would need to speak to Dad about the jeans, and he would probably make me keep them for another couple of months to another year. Money was always an issue.

I stood at the motel window, and simply stared out into the dark empty parking lot, waiting for my eldest brother and Dad to return. I hoped that they were alright. I didn't want any nasty surprises, like emergency trips to the trauma room, or having to prepare bandages from the first aid kit.

Even though I'm eleven, I still don't like being alone, especially when it starts to get dark. With the knowledge that I carry around in my brain, I know what lurks in the shadows. What the Grimm's brothers wrote in their books was clearly reality, instead of childish fiction. Meaning, there was big bad wolves out there, ready to attack. There was witches out there, searching for and devouring children like me. Everything that lurked in the darkness was real, and I was alone until my family returned to me.

After an hour of waiting, I climbed into bed, whilst holding onto a silver hunting knife, which had long replaced my old teddy bear Goober. I eventually drifted to sleep, once singing 'Hey Jude' to myself, in order to calm my nerves.

In the early morning, after over eight hours my family returned, as I could hear their hushed voices, as they entered the motel room. My brother carefully sat down on my bed, and gently stroked my scruffy brown hair. It was his way of saying that he had returned safely, without having to speak or wake me up.