“Maria!” Someone yells from behind me. “What?” I yell back. “Wait up!” Yells Cassidy who’s been my best friend since like forever. “Your so slow!” I yell jokingly. I slow down to let her catch up and she starts talking so fast it seems like her mouth is running on a jet motor. “Slow down.” I tell her. “I can’t study for English tomorrow or today because I have volleyball practice. I’m really sorry but coach is making us practice extra hard for state coming up.” “It’s okay.” I said even though it really wasn’t. “I’m really am sorry.” “I know how important volleyball is to you.” “Thanks for understanding! I gotta go now. Bye!” Bye I thought to myself. I walked home with my ear buds in while blasting music. I got home and went to my room to do homework. My dad came home and came to room. “Hi dad.” I said as he walked in. “Hi sweetie.” He said as he sat down on my reading chair. “How was school?” “Fine.” “Someone important is coming over around 7:30 so could you please make yourself look nice?” “Are you saying I don’t look nice?” I said in mock shock while looking at my band tee, jeans, and combat boots. “You know what I mean.” “Fine. How nice do I have to look?” “On a scale of 1-10, a 8-9.”Jeez. Who is it? The president?” “No. My fiancé.” “What!” I asked outraged and hurt. “You’re seeing someone even after mom died?” “It’s what she wanted. She said that if she died she wanted me to move on and wanted the same for her. We promised each other we would.” “Get out of my room right now. She better be worth it.” I started to get ready. I was fuming the whole time. 7:30 came and I stepped out of my room. I was wearing a black dress, silver heels, and a necklace with a heart locket from my mom. I didn’t say anything to my dad as I walked by him. The doorbell rang and he opened the door. In the doorway was a woman who was pale, had dark brown hair in a complicated up do and a black dress. Come in Elizabeth dear. “You must be Maria.” She said lightly. “Pleasure to meet you.” I said kindly. “Let’s go have dinner.” My dad said merrily. During dinner they discussed the wedding which was Saturday. I excused myself from the table and fell into a restless sleep. Saturday came and I officially had a step-mother. The next couple weeks were awful. She yelled at me, gave me the longest list of chores. Two months have now passed and I saw her do something bad. She sprinkled a powder into my dad’s drink and when he drank it he passed out and started running a fever. She’s continuously doing this now and he is getting weaker and weaker. “Hi dad.” I say. “Bunny, jelly.” He mumbles feverishly. I cry into my hands. I think he’s going to die soon. I can’t lose both my parents. I’ll check on him in the morning. I fall into a worried sleep. When I wake up in the morning he has no pulse, no heart rate, and is not breathing. “NO!” I yell out.”Have a drink darling.” “No thanks.” I must run away I think. I’ll do it tonight. Its 10:00 and Elizabeth’s asleep. I slip out the door and into the night. I’ll never see her again. I disappear in the darkness. Leaving the past behind and starting a new life. Alone.