"Now this here is the perfect angle I was just telling you about." Mr. Cornwall said enthusiastically as he pulled his sagging pants up for the millionth time that day. I sighed and bent lower in my desk pretending to take notes when in reality I was reading the first volume of Fairy Tail I had. I had just gotten to the end and was reaching for the second one when the bell rang signaling the end of the day and the beginning of a long Thanksgiving break.
"Don't forget to do your homework!" Mr. Cornwall yelled as students hustled past him ignoring their teacher as they left. Standing up I placed my treasured book into my bag and carefully extracted three pages of homework he had assigned us yesterday.
"Here Mr. Cornwall," I said softly setting the homework on his desk as I was leaving. Once out of the classroom I hurried to my locker to put my textbooks away hoping I would be able to catch the bus home.
"So what are your plans for break?" I heard people asking their friends as I rushed by. I mentally sighed to myself as people began to drift away until I was finally alone at my locker.
"Hey look it's the freak." I heard someone whisper as I shut my locker door and picked up my now lighter bag. I turned to leave but tripped over someones foot falling and making everyone laugh, I scrambled to my feet and kept my head down using my long blue black hair as a curtain as I ran out of the school only to see my bus drive away without me.
I sighed and started walking down the road to my parents house wondering silently if they were home. If they were I was going to get another beating but if they weren't I might be able to grab some food and hide it away for break. I smiled at my plan, even though it was pitiful it was all I had because after a year of trying to tell someone about the beatings and run away I had slowly learned there was only two ways of escape from my family; death and books.
I looked down at my phone to see one of the two phone numbers I had grown to hate with my very being.
"Hello?" I asked my voice cracking and betraying the fear I tried to hide from them.
"Where are you at?" My father's voice rang out from the other end of the call as my bruises from two days before began to announce their presence.
"I just left school," I stuttered out as I heard partying in the background while stepping into a nearby shadow cast by a tree.
"Don't bring your sorry ass home tonight." My mother's voice slurred out at me from the phone proving what I already knew. She was drunk and they were both at another party, probably getting high.
"For that matter don't come home till we call you, you ungrateful piece of shit." My mother screeched at me making tears come to my eyes as a memory of her before all this surfaced. Before I could respond the line went dead and I fell to my knees forcing the tears to leave as I got back up. I had just narrowly avoided a beating by going home there was no way I was going to deny myself a small moment of freedom.
Standing back up I shifted my bag round until I was comfortable and began walking into the forest beside the road looking for the familiar trail I had made several months ago. After walking for probably twenty minutes I came into a fairly large clearing near a stream with a small but warm looking cabin near the trees and about seven or eight feet away from a large stream that was big and deep enough to wash and swim in. I sighed feeling myself relax as I caught sight of the crude Fairy Tail mark I had spray painted onto my shed.
"I'm home!" I called out and walked inside the shed to see a small fireplace, a stack of firewood, a small bed made of old wooden boards, several dozen candles, spare clothes, a few dishes, and a small metal rod that resembled a sword next to a crudely made bow and a few arrows. I sighed and set my bag on my bed before walking over to the fireplace and setting a new fire.
"Oi! Natsu! Make sure you don't eat this fire, alright?" I said to myself as I tried to light a fire for the second time and finally caused it to light up bathing the small shed in a warm cherry glow. I smiled and sat back watching the fire for a while before getting up and walking out of the open door and towards the stream.
"Wonder what's for dinner?" I mumbled to myself as I took off my shoes and socks and rolled up my pants to wade into the cold clean water. About an hour later I had successfully caught two medium sized fish and was cold and tired. Slowly I got out and grabbing my stuff, making my way to my shed as the sun began to set.
"Sun's almost gone, better hurry up." I muttered looking at the sky before quickly cleaning the two fish and placing them on a large plate I had made of tinfoil.
"Thank you for the fish, minna!" I whispered to no one before heading outside in the dark with a small candle to bury the remains. Once done I ran back to the shed and closed the door on the cold night welcoming the warm glow of the fire as it spit and crackle.
"I better go to bed soon," I thought sleepily as I added another small log into the fire hole and cleared away any loose debris that might catch fire before adding another circle of rocks to the already large circle of rocks around the fire. Once done, I moved over to my bed and pulled back one of the two blankets I had gotten from a church and curled up underneath it, stuffing my backpack with my clothes to use as a pillow.
I woke up confused at the dim light until I spotted my phone about a foot away ringing. I woke up completely as I spotted my mother's number on the caller id and answered it.
"Hello?" I croaked scared but knowing why she called.
"Get your lazy good for nothing bitch ass to this house right this second you ungrateful little bastard!" My mother screamed into my ears jerking me into action as I threw dirt on the embers of my fire from earlier that night and scrambled to put my worn boots on and pull on my jacket. I slipped the phone into my pocket after stuttering a terrified yes ma'am as she hung up. I jerked the door open and with one quick glance over closed and locked it with my only lock before dashing through the woods towards their house.
I screamed at myself for letting myself relax and think they would leave me alone. After an hour of hard running I finally reached their house and felt a memory try to force it's way to the front of my mind as I saw the small two story house with the small covered front porch that had once been white but had chipped and faded to a grey that matched the color of the rest of the house. I coughed and rubbed my green eyes trying to catch my breath before getting closer but I knew it would be for nothing since I wouldn't be able to breath much anyway in a few minutes. Slowly I walked up the front steps and knocked on the door, knowing I wasn't welcomed.
The door swung open to reveal blood shot brown eyes, sagging sore covered skin, and rotten teeth framed by limp black hair that hung in clumps. My mother was once considered beautiful, with tan skin that she never had to work for or put make up on. Right now though she looked worse than ever; the drugs having drained her of all her former beauty. She grabbed my sweaty hair in her scrawny fist and yanked me into the house and kicked me into the living room where my father sat waiting with his belt. He stood up when I landed on the floor and watched me as I slowly got up.
"Daddy?" I whispered up at him, praying he would see me as his little girl again, but one look into his hard unforgiving green eyes told me he no longer saw me as that. He simply saw me as an unneeded item that wouldn't leave. I flinched and closed my eyes as he raised his hand and slapped me across the face knocking me down from the force of the blow. When I hit the floor I heard my mother screaming at me; yelling about how worthless I was and how much she regretted having me. I curled into a ball as she started to kick me and cried, I never saw my father raise his belt otherwise I would have run, or screamed for help no matter how useless it would have been.
"I've been to lenient with you," he said and I heard the whistle followed by a crack as he landed a hit on my arm causing the thin material of my jacket to rip and my arm to start bleeding. I screamed as he hit me five more times before going silent as he and mother began to simultaneously hurt me leaving me struggling for each breath. Finally when I felt it would never end I slipped into the welcoming arms of unconsciousness.