Thank God it's the weekend. I wake up on the Saturday morning and sit up. I go over to my window and look out over the Hardy Compound. I see Jeff going around the dirt track on his bike in the distance and Dad's in the garage working on one of his old cars.

I put on my robe and head downstairs I can't be bothered to get dressed today. For the first time in a while, I'm hungry. I look in the cupboards and grab a packet of cookies. I shrug and go into the lounge.

I turn the T.V on and settle down on the couch. There's re-runs of America's Next Top Model on so I decide to watch that. They're showing the whole season in one day. I think I'll see how many episodes I can watch in a row.

I snack on cookies and eat the whole packet. I scrunch the packet up and hide it in my pocket. I'll blame Jeff and Matt for eating them. I tuck my legs up towards my chest and lean my head on my knees. Dad's still outside, he'll be in the car sheds until dinner.

I have homework to do but I honestly can't be bothered. I'm rubbish at math so I don't do it. It's really that simple. I know my grades are falling but there's bigger things to worry about than my grades. Only, my Dad doesn't feel the same way. When he sees my report card in a few weeks he's going to freak.

After 4 episodes of America's Next Top Model, my phone rings. I pick it up expecting it to be Jeff or Matt but I'm pleasantly surprised to see that it's Natalie. I answer the phone and she starts talking immediately.

Natalie: My Dad says I can have friends over for dinner today and the only person I could think of inviting is you. Would you like to?

I'm silent for a little while. Natalie classes me as a friend. I smile.

Me: Yes. That would be nice.

I can hear her shout to her dad about collecting me. He calls back asking where I live. She shouts back Cameron. Her dad shouts back saying where about.

Natalie: Where about in Cameron?

Me: Boys Camp Road drive along and you'll see a sign for The Hardy Compound then you'll see the house but your dad doesn't have to come and collect me. I can ask Jeff or Matt.

Natalie: Don't be silly. Dad wants to go to the supermarket anyway. We'll see you soon.

Me: Okay. See you soon.

I put my phone on the couch next to me and stand up. I need to get dressed.

Dad's still outside when I get back from getting dressed. I'm wearing a denim skirt with tights and a chequered shirt. I head out the back and find dad in the shed.

Dad: You alright Rebekah?

Me: I'm going out. Natalie's invited me round for dinner.

Dad wipes his oily hands on a dirty towel and smiles.

Dad: That's lovely Rebekah but how are you getting there and back?

Me: Her father's picking me up.

Dad nods and leans forward to kiss me on the forehead.

Dad: Just be safe please.

I hold back a scoff. He wasn't saying that when it happened. I just smile and nod. He smiles back and goes back to doing whatever he was doing with the cars.

I turn and walk back into the house. I don't know if I want to take anything to Natalie and decide to ring her to ask. She picks up after the third ring.

Natalie: Please don't tell me you're cancelling.

Me: No, just wondering if I should bring anything?

Natalie: No you don't need to, just yourself.

Me: Okay. I'll see you soon.

I hang up and just wonder around the house for a while. A text comes through on my phone. It's Natalie saying that they're only 5 minutes away. I smile. It's nice to be wanted by someone even if she is annoying and talks to much.

I walk out the front to see if I can spot their car. I walk past the shed and wave to Dad. He waves and calls out something but I don't hear him. I'm walking onto Boys Camp Road when a golf buggy stops in front of me.

Jeff: Where are you going?

Me: Natalie's.

Jeff: Do you need a lift?

Me: No. They're coming to get me.

Jeff smiles. I think that he thinks I'm finally getting better but the truth is, he couldn't be more wrong.

Jeff: Well look after yourself girl, if you need me to collect you just ring.

I nod and wave to him as he starts driving back to Matt's. I wave at him and then wrap my arms around myself. I hope that Natalie hurries up. I hate being out here alone. Luckily, I'm only waiting for 5 minutes when Natalie's Dad pulls up. I get into the car and introduce myself, I'm silent for the rest of the way to hers.


Natalie's house is only a 20 minute drive from mine. It's a small house, much smaller than mine but it's comfy and a place that someone like Natalie would happily call home. As soon as we get in she hurries me into her room.

Her room is nicely decorated. The walls are cream but brightly colored circles are painted around the walls. The odd photo and poster are taped to the walls too. It looks like a grown up bedroom, unlike mine.

We sit on her bed and she chats about random things like band members she finds cute.

Natalie: Don't you just love All Time Low. They're really good. I love Alex so much. He's just so sweet don't you think?

Me: They're okay.

Her father comes up and asks us whether or not we would like any snacks. Natalie says yes and I just nod like an idiot. He probably hates me. Oh well, he can join the long line of haters.

Natalie has a T.V in her bedroom. a T.V with cable. She puts on the channel I was watching at home. They're still showing re-runs of America's Next Top Model.

Natalie: Wouldn't you love to be a model? You have the right build to be a model. You'd be a natural.

I look at her sideways. Does she really think that I have model looks? She must be more blind than she thinks she is. We watch T.V for most of the night. Natalie talks a lot like normal and I just listen. It's easier that way; just nod and pretend like you're interested.

We get to sleep in the early hours of the morning but I don't sleep for long. I never do anymore. Sleep hasn't been my friend since that night. Tonight, every time I close my eyes I see him smirking and getting close to Ella. I want to warn her before he gets too close but it might already be too late. I don't know what I'd do if it was too late. I wonder if she would be like me? Or would she be brave? I sit up in the airbed that Natalie pumped up for me and rub sleep from my eyes. Natalie is snoring lightly in her bed and it's pitch black outside. I curl my knees up towards me. I find comfort in this position but not much. I look around the room in the light from the hall and spot Natalie's laptop. I scuttle over the floor and pick it up before taking it back to my airbed. I'm sure Natalie won't mind me borrowing it.

It comes to life and I open up the internet and head to my blog. I haven't posted since Thursday. I open a new blog page and start to type.

I can't sleep. Every time I close my eyes all I can see is him with her and it's killing me. I need to warn her about him but I don't know how. She won't even look at me. I have to think of something. Maybe I'll post a note through her locker. I could type it so she doesn't recognize my handwriting. I think that's what I'll do.

I'm at a friends for a sleep over. She's asleep and I can't sleep. It doesn't seem fair really but life isn't fair. If there's something I've learned from this mess it's that.

I'm so tired. I just want some sleep. I need to go to Jeff's soon. I'll raid his medicine supply just take a few pain killers. He won't even know they're missing.

I'm going to try and go back to sleep now.

Night.

I log out of my blog and turn Natalie's laptop off. I put it back where I found it and lie back down. It's going to be a long night and I just hope that the dreams stay away.


It's the annual summer party at Matt's house and the music is blaring. I invited loads of my friends along and many of them were dancing to the live band in the out house. I'm sitting with Connor by the pool. He has his arm around my shoulder and is saying sweet things into my ear.

Connor: You're so beautiful Rebekah. Even your name is beautiful.

I curl up closer to his body and he places kisses across my face and neck. He's a senior and I know that people are noticing that we're together. His hands are wondering and I feel a little uneasy. He leans closer into me and assures me that it's going to be okay

Connor: Shall we go somewhere more private?

I don't really want to go but he's gorgeous and the words he was using were charming and convinced me that everything was going to be fine. He took my hand and we headed out of the yard and into the woods slightly.

He wraps his arm around me and kisses me furiously.

I wake up and sit bolt upright. I'm sweating and breathing heavily. I look over to make sure that Natalie is still asleep and let out a sigh of relief. She's still asleep and snoring lightly. I wipe my hand over my forehead. I have tears dried on my cheeks. I can't shake the memory of his smirk. It's forever etched in my mind. I clamp my eyes shut but it doesn't work. I check the time. It's now 8 in the morning. I lie back down and stare at the ceiling, I hope Natalie wakes up soon.

I lie back down with my back facing Natalie and listen out for her waking up. I heard the bed creak.

Natalie: Rebekah? Are you awake?

I stretch to make it seem like I've only just woken up myself and sit up. Natalie beams at me. Her hair is a mess and her make-up is smudged where she didn't take it off last night.

Natalie: Did you sleep well?

Me: Yes thank you.

It's easier to lie. I've learned that lesson very well. Natalie smiles and swings her legs off the bed. She heads to her closet and pulls out some clothes for the day. I reach for my bag and pull it onto my lap. I get my own clothes out of the bag. A pair of baggy jeans and a t-shirt. Natalie dresses in smart jeans and a nice t-shirt. We couldn't be more different.

We go into the bathroom so Natalie can put her make-up on.

Natalie: You should wear make-up, it would make you even prettier than you already are.

Me:

She puts on some eyeliner and mascara along with some foundation. She really is pretty, I'm not pretty. Natalie just says that to make me feel better.

After Natalie's finished putting her make-up on and we've both brushed our hair. She looks much better than I do. We go downstairs. Mr Peters' cooking breakfast. He cooks bacon and eggs and fried bread. I'm not that hungry so I nibble on a few slices of bacon and a slice of friend bread.

Mr Peters: So do you live with your parents Rebekah?

Me: I live with my Dad.

It's easier than telling him that I'm adopted.

Mr Peters: And have you always lived in Cameron?

Me: Born and bred in The Hardy Compound.

Again, a lie. It's what Jeff says when people ask him whether or not he's always lived in Cameron.

Mr Peters: That's really nice. It seems like a wonderful place.

Me: It is. Both my brothers live on near too.

Mr Peters smiles and starts washing up the dirty plates. Natalie has eaten two plates of fried breakfast. She eats loads but never seems to put on any weight. She's lucky.

Natalie: So what do you want to do today?

I shrug, I kind of want to go home but I can't really say that. Natalie was nice enough to invite me around. We decide to watch a few films. Her dad brings in popcorn and chips in bowls. We watch the first Harry Potter film. I like this film a lot.

After the film her Dad comes in and tells us to get ready. He says that he'll drop me home and then him and Natalie will go to the supermarket on their way back. I smile and say thank you before following Natalie up the stairs to collect my bag.

We get onto Boys Camp Road and I point out the landmarks like Jeff's house, Matt's house and the dirt bike track. Natalie has her eyes wide open and a big smile on her face. She turns to me.

Natalie: This place is awesome. You're so lucky that you get to live here.

I smile and nod. As we pull into my house I notice that there's two of three golf buggies in the yard. We get around on golf buggies here because we're too far away to walk quickly but also too close to drive. It was mainly set up for Dad.

I thank Mr Peters for letting me stay and promise Natalie that I'll see her in school on Monday. Mr Peters says that I'm welcome over anytime and as they drive away Natalie waves madly from the passenger seat. I wave back and head inside to deal with all the family members that were inside.

I walk into the living room and as I suspected it was full. Jeff and Beth were on one couch, Dad was in his chair and Matt and his girlfriend Reby were on the other couch. I pop my head through the door.

Me: I'm home.

Everyone looks up and smiles.

Dad: Have a good time?

I nod and turn to leave. I don't really fancy being sociable today.

Jeff: Wait Rebekah, we have something to announce.

I roll my eyes and turn back into the room. I smile. Jeff and Beth look at each other before breaking out into a grin.

Jeff: We're expecting.

Wow. I wasn't expecting that. I find myself smiling and feeling pleased for them. They've been talking about children for a while and now they've finally got their want. Everyone's hugging Beth and shaking Jeff's hand. Congratulating them both. I walk towards them and give both of them a hug.

Me: Congratulations.

I turn away and walk out the room. No one stops me this time. They're all too excited about the new news. I head upstairs to my bedroom and throw my bag on the floor. I sit down on the bed and turn my laptop on. It comes to life with a bing and I log onto my blog to add a new entry.

I had another nightmare last night. Although to me it feels more like a flashback, I don't know why I can't get this out of my head. It's killing me from the inside out and I don't know how much longer I can go.

My sister-in-law is pregnant. She just told everyone. Her and my brother look so happy. I'm jealous of their smiles and their lives. Why can't I be happy? That's all I want, to be happy or to have a full nights sleep. One of the two, I'm really not fussed. I'm going to attempt some math homework now. Wish me luck.

I send the post to my blog and switch my music player on. I put the laptop down the side of my bed and climb into the covers. I sink down below them so they hide me. It's a safe place in this world of madness. I close my eyes and drift of to sleep hoping that the bad dreams will stay away for a few hours.