Chapter 1: starting over
“ Catherine Elizabeth Espinoza wake up you have ten minutes before we head to the airport.” I hear my mom say from the foot of the bed. “ Yes ma’am i’m up.” I say jumping out of bed “Why couldn’t I just go with Teagan?” I ask heading to the bathroom. Teagan was one of my older brothers. He had olive skin, he was 6 foot 3, he had chocolate brown hair and green eyes not to mention he was 19 and had a sharp jawline and high cheekbones. “ Now you know good and well that you and him can’t get along and I’m not letting my only daughter drive that far. What if something bad were to happen something bad may happen to you?” she says, passing me breakfast. “ Yeah, and may I remind you that he has 2 more boys, no I’m sorry men who are with him and inplus he still has to come back here and get the rest of the stuff plus I don’t trust him driving my truck.” I say putting my bowl in the sink and as I start to walk up stairs but stop in my tracks as my mother says something I never thought she would ever say. “ Well, I mean if you really want to I can let you drive to the new house but you have to wait for Teagan and the rest of the boys to get here.” did I just hear her correctly is she actually serious right now or am I just dreaming?!! I turn to my mother and say “ Wait you would let me do that?” she smiles and pats the chair with her hand signalling me to sit down. “ I know that me and your father were strict but honestly that was all him that had the say so but he doesn’t run my house so I will let you just promise me that you will let someone ride with you.” I jump up and down in joy and hug her neck but stop and frown. I step back and say “ Who is going to fly with you tho?” She smiles just as the doorbell rings I walk over and open it and I see my aunt Jessica with a smile and one suitcase. I hug her neck and move out the way so she can come in. “ Well hello ladies who’s ready to start fresh?” she says wiggling her eyebrows and shaking her shoulders with a smile. “ Oh I know we are and now that Kevin is gone we can finally do so.” my mom says standing. “ your aunt is gonna fly with me in your place because it was my plan to let you drive all along.” she continues. “oh my gosh this is legit the best day ever.” I say jumping up and down. “ I’m glad to hear that because you start school Monday and your aunt is are neighbor.” she says casually. “Now what do you plan to wear?” I look at my aunt and look back at myself to realize they leave in an hour and I’m probably gonna have to drive them. “ Right, I forgot I was still in this. I will be right back tho.” I run off after saying and I end up in the bathroom brushing my teeth and cleaning my face, I then land in my room dressing myself in a pair of ripped Jeans and white tube top with a cardigan over it I the brushed and fish tail braid my long brown wavy hair put some chap-stick and mascara on slip on some sandals and head downstairs to find my mother and aunt waiting by the door. “ Has it been an hour already?” I say looking at the time on my phone while grabbing my keys off the table. “Honey there’s traffic and it already takes 20 minutes to get there so we need to leave now if we wanna catch our flight.” I hear my mom say while she opens the door.
“ Is everyone buckled?” I ask after we get in the truck. I look to see the both of them thumbs up at me. I smile backing out.
“ Okay you know the rules.” my mother says. “ Karen come on now whes 17 not 7, now let’s go.” my aunt says while waiting, my mother smiles at her. “Okay bye sweety I love you and I will see you tonight.” she says about to cry. “ Bye ma, have fun love you.” I say hugging her tightly and leaving so they could catch their flight.
“ Oh Kit-Cat I’m home.” I hear my annoying brother say walking into the house. “ Great, now hurry up and let’s load the stuff i’m ready to go and i’m hungry.” I say and that we did. “ well that’s the last of it guys now lets go.” I hear Tegan say to everyone. “ Hey T who is riding with me?” I ask about locking the door. “ Ummm, well I’m not letting any of these guys drive my car but I do trust my friend Booker here cuz I know him the best.” yeah you heard him right he said care he drives a hellcat and it’s his baby. But he pointed to a pretty cute guy who seemed cool so I guess he would work. “ Hi! I’m Catherine.” I say holding my hand out for him to shake in which he does while saying “Hey! I’m Booker.” wow! Okay did not expect his voice to be that deep but, okay. But I just smile and nod before walking to my truck. Once in I close the door, buckle up, roll the window down, plug my phone to the ox cord then hit play. “Umm, are you coming Booker?” I ask once I see him walking to the moving truck where the other two guys whose names I didn’t know. “ Yeah I just gotta grab my stuff.” he says grabbing a few things then coming back. “ Buckle up bud.” I say as Teagan pulls up next to me. “ So I’m gonna get food, y’all can come if you want.” I say after turning the music down. “ yeah where are you going?” Tegan asks. “ Ethier Chick-fil-a, Whataburger, or Zaxby’s, you choose I don’t care which one.” I say back to him. “ Zaxby’s sounds good.” the guy next to Tegan says. Okay let’s get about half way and there’s a Zaxby’s at that exit.” I say. “Yeah sounds good let’s get some gas and stuff before we leave town.” Tegan says before he calls somebody which was the two guys driving the moving truck. “ Okay let’s hit the road then.” Teagan say’s driving off. I stayed back for a second to tell Booker he can change the song and gave him my phone so he could choose. “ So, your Tegans little sister?” he says after changing the song. “ Sadly the one and only literally.” I say and he chuckles “ He said you were ugly and mean tho.” he says and I laugh and say “ ugly, not that I know of. Mean on the other hand, only when I have to be.” He chuckles. “ Well, that’s nice to know, so umm if you don’t mind me asking what happened between your parents?” he pauses before saying, “I mean you don’t have to but my parents are separated too so I kinda feel your pain.” I smile sadly before I speak “he umm he’s a piece of crap, and he cheated with his secretary, I know it sounds so original but it’s the truth he was apparently in love with her.” I’m not going to cry over that piece of crap I think in my head. It’s been an hour since we have been on the road and Booker has been watching Lucifer while I get my usal road rage from people who don’t know how to drive. “ just 4 more hours.” I hear Booker say through laughter. “Shut up.” I say through clenched teeth. 2 and a half hours and I was glad to get food.“Hey, calm down and relax.” he says and I realized I was tense in anger. “Right calm.” I say. “Hey, Booker, what do you want to eat?” I shake him a few times “huh? Oh umm you choose I don’t care.” he says still half asleep “drink?” I ask “ surprise me.” he says back rubbing his eyes. “A number 7 large with a sweet tea please.” I say. “ will that be all?” she asks “ no, I also want a number 2 large with a sprite please and that will be all.” I say before I hear “that will be $19.71.” I then drive up and get the food and park right next to Teagan. “Tegan, do you go to the school where I start Monday?” I ask out of nowhere. “Yes I do, why?” he says with a mouth full of food. “Because I’m gonna need help getting around.” I say . “not happening Kit-Cat.” he says with a mouth full of food again. “Whatever you say T-T.” I say his nickname from childhood and he freezes and turns to me from his food. On the other hand I have a big fat evil smile on my face. “You wouldn’t dare.” oh but I would, I say in my head “your right I wouldn’t.” I say to him knowing good and well if he didn’t show me around and help me find all my classes I would share with everyone my big brother’s nickname with the whole school and I would do much more than that until he at least apologized to me and took me wherever I wanted for a whole month. “You would, wouldn’t you?” I hear Booker ask me through a whisper. “Oh yes, yes I would, and he should know that I mean he learned it the hard way.” I say before taking a long sip. “I figured that by your evil looking smile.” he says and I laugh. “ yeah I’ve never been able to hide my facial expressions.” I say before laughing again. “You’re scaring me now.” he says. “As you should be Booker, as you should be.” I say before finishing my food. “Are you finished?” I ask ready to finish the other two hours we have left to drive. “Yes! Why?” he says, still scared. “Because I’m gonna throw it away.” I say trying to hide my smile. “Okay I’ll do it tho cuz it’s kinda dark out.” he says opening the door grabbing the trash and shutting it. “Hey, nice car.” O-oh here we go again with the gold digger wanna be’s. “He’s not interested so move along.” I say. “Was I talking to you lezbo?” she says with a fake smile, wait did I just hear this chick right?!! “But I told you anyway to save you the embarrassment, But you probably don’t even know the engine do you?” I ask hopping out of my truck ready to fight. “It’s an engine that all that matters isn’t it?” she says, trying to save herself. “ no, no it isn’t because all you’re trying to do is flirt, so unless you can tell me the engine to prove me wrong by all means please find someone your level of dumb to try and flirt with.” I say and she was so mad you could practically see the smoke coming from her ear she balls her fist up but I know she’s not gonna do nothing but stomp off, and that she does. “It’s a V-8 by the way oh, and I’m not a lezbo either thank you ma’am.” I yell before laughing. “Thanks Kit-Cat.” Teagan says sincerely, this isn’t the first time I’ve done that sadly. “As always bud.” I say getting back in my truck. “Dang I think I’m in love man.” I hear the guy that was next to Teagan say right as Booker walked up. “Not happening buddy.” I say buckling back up. “What happened while I was gone?” Booker asks. “Ask your bestie.” I say and he does so Teagan explains they all laugh. “Okay let’s go.” I say backing up and leaving. “Wait so you have to do that often.” he says, still in disbelief. “Yeah.” I say back. And we come to a comfortable silence for the rest of the ride and by the time we get to the new house it’s nine at night but I still unpack and put all my stuff away and go to bed.
“Hey wake up sis.” I hear my brother’s voice waking me from my peaceful sleep. “I’m up, I’m up.” I say. And hop out of bed. “Get dressed moms taking us to get decorations for our rooms and you new stuff for school.” he says before leaving my room. So I get dressed into a pair of shorts and tank top to wear under my sweat shirt, I then slide into some vans. And go to the bathroom to brush my hair because I left my hair down to dry last night after my shower and I brush my teeth and head down stairs.
Lets just say the shopping day will never happen again for me. We left at nine o’clock this morning and it’s now seven o'clock at night and we just got home like 2 minutes ago and when I tell you I am worn out. “Mom is ordering Chinese what do you want?” I can hardly hear Teagan ask. “The regular please.” I say about to pass out. “Okay.” he says before leaving my room. I’m glad it’s Thursday so I can have time to set up my new room before school Monday which I suppose I should start on after supper. “Sweetie, come down here please.” the voice of my mother chimes through my ears. “Hold on a second.” I immediately regret saying that because. “ Excuse me young lady when I ask you to do something you do it.” she pauses before opening my door and continues. “I mean I’m not Kevin so I don’t ask you for much and the things I do ask are not hard to do.” she says I know I’m not gonna get a word in so I just listen to her rant and by the time she’s done the food is here so she stops ranting and I finally get the chance to say. “ yes ma’am I know you’re not that idiot and you don’t ask for much from us, but I felt like I was about to pass out from all that shopping.” she looks shocked. “Well sit down I’m sorry I didn’t know.” oh lord here we go. “Ma not that type of pass out like tired from shopping.” I say “Oh! Well umm let’s go eat.” she says with a tight smile before we head down stairs and there’s a boy I haven’t seen before. He’s very tall, has dirty blonde hair and brown eyes. and then I see Booker must be related to the dirty blonde stranger. I make sure to let my mom go in front of me. I heard one of the boys say “I heard she’s actually gonna be the hottest girl at school when she gets there I also heard she drives a lifted truck.” It must be the blonde if so he’s got a very deep voice too just like Booker. As I finish taking the last step and ready to turn the corner to get to the kitchen I hear Teagan say “oh yeah what else have you heard about my little sister?” I just giggled and I scared someone else to say “Did anyone else hear that giggle?” I giggle even more and they are all scared now. “Catherine Elizabeth Espinoza come here.” and that’s definitely my mother. “Ma’am?” I say with a smile knowing good and well what I did. Oh wow he looks a lot better in person. “Eat please.” yeah you heard that right I forget to eat sometimes even though I love food. “Yes ma’am.” I say grabbing my food off the counter and sitting down at the kitchen table. “Hello Booker how are you today.” I say before taking a bite. “I’m good, how are you?” he says knowing it was me who giggled. “Scary.” I say smiling evilly wiggling my eyebrows. He smiled at me. “And how are you human I don’t know.” I say smiling sweetly this time. “I’m good, how are you?” he pauses “you must be Catherine.” I smile again. “The one and only.” I sip my water before saying “ I’m good but if I knew your name I would be better.” then Booker speaks up and says “That’s my little brother Ashlie.” haha I knew it. “Oh I kinda figured, I mean y’all do look alike.” I say “Well nice to meet you Ashlie.” Okay so is this guy off limits for being friends? Hope not because he seems like a pretty nice person. “It’s nice to meet you too.” I look up and grin. And look right back down. “Hey Catherine did you know that Ashlie is in your grade.” Teagan speaks up. I looked up to find Ashlie’s gaze on me. “No, Teagan I did not, I just found his name out ten minutes ago.” Like how dumb can he be, wait I know that trick and it’s not going to happen. “And you’re not getting out of showing me around either.” He frowns at me before he continues to eat. “I’m going to decorate and set up my room now.” I say once done eating. “Okay sweetie have fun.” Fun?!! Really ma, what on God’s green earth is fun about decorating? I wouldn’t dare to say that out loud so I just think it. “Will do ma. Ashlie again it was nice meeting you. Booker it was great seeing you again. But if you’ll excuse me I have a lot of cleaning, decorating, organizing to do.” I say before heading up stairs but I stop and turn around when I hear footsteps behind me to see Ashile. “Umm I was wondering if I could maybe help since Booker and Teagan are talking.” well what a nice surprise. “Yeah that would be nice actually.” I say before I continue walking to my room and he follows behind. “Wow this room is huge and there are a lot of bags full of stuff.” I just giggle at his comment. “No I’m serious even Tegan’s room is smaller than this.” I giggle once more. “Yeah we always play rock paper scissors on who gets the second biggest room and I won this time.” I say before giggling again. “Hey me and Booker do the same thing when we move.” he says. “Oh I have to find the scissors I bought today before we start.” I say before I grab one bag and dump it out on my bed before Ashlie comes and looks through the stuff with me. “Thank you so much for helping me.” I say. “It’s no problem I like to organize, I umm have OCD really bad.” he says almost like he was scared to tell me. “Really I do too. I mean I don’t have to take medicine to control it but the doctors almost made me.” I say being truthful. “Oh! Umm I have to but it’s not that much, and you’re the first person who hasn’t made fun of me for that.” see I knew something was up when he told me. “Why would I do that?” I say confused as to why someone would make fun of that. “Because I’m a guy and only girls are supposed to have it.” he says in a sad tone looking down. “Who said that?” I ask “Only everyone I’ve ever told. Even Booker made fun of me when I first was diagnosed with it.” He says not looking up still in a sad tone. I lift his face up and look him in the eyes and say “I think it’s cool that you have OCD, but you shouldn’t care what other people say about that because we all have issues and flaws.” he smiles and I can tell that he was happy now. “Besides I have ADHD and ADD and people call me a crackhead when I don’t take my medicine for it but I look them straight in the eyes and say ‘do you see the care bears in my eyes.’ besides I know I don’t do drugs and that’s all that matters.” he laughs his butt off after I tell him that. By the time he’s done laughing we found the scissors and are opening what needs to be opened “So what theme are you doing?” he asked “Well I’m doing a blue, white and grey theme because those are my favorite colors and I couldn’t think of anything else.” I say honestly. “I like the decorations but I just thought you were doing those colors because of the dark grey walls and the light grey floors.” he says. “No we had the house redone to our liking.” I say opening a pack of fairy lights when my mom walks in with a few more bags in her hand. “Sweetie you forgot your shelves tapestry and comforter, and your furniture stuff is still in the trunk of my SUV can you please go get it.” she says before setting the bags down and leaving my room not letting me answer. “You need help?” Ashlie asks. “Please.” I say walking down stairs and getting the stuff out her trunk. We got all of it in one load because Booker and Teagan also help. “Thank you guys.” they all just smile and say no problem. “I’ve gotta go get my tool box out of my truck, I’ll be right back.” I say before grabbing my keys off the hook and heading to my truck I grab my tool box and head back in after I make sure it’s locked. “Okay, I’m back,″ I say entering my room. “Great because I’ve cleared a space to build the furniture.” he says with a chuckle I just laugh and open the tool box and we get to work. “ okay where do you want the desk?” he asked once we built everything. “Umm I don’t know where should I put it?” I ask and he points to a corner and I nod. Once we get the last of the shelf's we decorate till ten at night before we call it a night. “Good night Catherine.” he says yawning. “Good night Ashlie. And thanks again” I say before heading to the bathroom which also has bags full of decorations for it and take a shower and do everything else I need to do before bed.
“WAKE UP.” I feel a pillow hit me. “WAKE UP.” I feel it again. “NOW.” and once again. “OKAY I’M UP DANG-” before I could say anything else I was hit again. “TEAGAN. JAMES. ESPINOZA. IF YOU HIT ME ONE MORE TIME YOUR GONNA REGRET BEING BORN.” I yell at the top of my lungs. And what does my dearest dumb brother do? He hits me again. “THAT’S IT YOUR DEAD.” I said jumping out of bed and I chased him with a pillow for ten minutes not even realizing that his friends were over including Booker, Ashlie, three guys from the night we drove here whose names I still don’t know and like four other people I didn’t know either. I finally pushed him on the ground and forgot about the pillow and started hitting him with my hands “You butt I was sleeping peacefully and you just had to mess that up didn’t you? And then you hit me with a pillow like I wasn’t gonna beat the mess out of you.” I continue to hit him with my hands “I’m sorry I’m sorry. Please have mercy.” he says making me even angrier than I already am. “Are you out of your mind? I will not have mercy on you and I most certainly am not going to forgive you nor will I stop so don’t ask.” I continue to hit him until I hear someone cough and the rest laugh and that’s when I turn around and find nine guys just staring at me. “Is there something I can help you with, gentleman?” I ask, crossing my arms. They look behind me and I know my brothers standing a couple inches behind me with a pillow raised ready to hit me so I crack my knuckles and say “I SWEAR TO YOU TEAGAN JAMES ESPINOZA IF YOU HIT ME WITH THAT PILLOW I WILL END YOU.” all while looking at those nine boys who looked stunned by what I just said. “TEAGAN try me if you want to but just because your friends are here doesn’t mean I will not hit you as hard as I do any other time.” I say knowing he’s gonna do it anyway but before he can I turn around and punch him in his face. “What else do you need to learn to know you should never hit me?″ I say. “Catherine.” O-oh “Ma.” I smile “What did he do this time.” I try to hide my smile “he beat me with a pillow again.” I say “Teagan your grounded for the rest of the weekend.” she says. “Mom she’s the one who was beating the mess out of me and I’m the one that’s grounded” I just laugh at his comment “your gonna pay for this Cat.” Yeah he’s stupid because that was a threat and it was taken but it still made me mad. “Excuse me, who do you think you’re talking to?” I pause and wait for an answer. “Don’t get brave just because you’re in front of your little friends, you and I both no I am NOT someone to threaten.” I yell the word not and then hear some voice say “Baby doll I am not a little person and you’re a little girl what are you gonna do about it.” I look to see the guy next to Ashlie speaking before I look at mom and Teagan who both have the uh-o he’s gonna regret that look on his face before I walk up to him. “Cat control.” Teagan knows what happens when you underestimate me. “Catherine please.” that voice came from my mom but I was too angry to back down. “And who are you.” I say with an evil voice. “Kaeden Rivera, quarterback for the local school. And you twig?” Oh no he didn’t “Man don’t freaking say anything stupid right now your digging yourself a very deep hole.” true “Teagan’s right man you should shut up while you still can.” Twig? A twig. I was not a twig I was not fat but I wasn’t that skinny either. “Okay you disappointment listen to me when I tell you this. I AM NOT A TWIG. I WILL END YOUR LITTLE POPULARITY CAREER. I AM NOT ONE TO MESS WITH AND YOU SHOULD NEVER EVER UNDERESTIMATE ME.” I was livid right now but I paused to take a deep breath before… “I AM NOT YOUR BABY DOLL.” *kick to the crotch* “AND I WON’T TELL YOU WHAT I’M GONNA DO ABOUT IT I’M JUST GONNA SHOW YOU.” *4 slaps across the face* “AND DON’T YOU EVER DISRESPECT ME. EVER.” for each word I said he took a good punch to the face. “IS THAT UNDERSTOOD?” I take two more punches before a pair of strong warm rough hands pull me off. “OH one last thing, I didn’t ask you what you played I asked your name.” I say before the strong hands pull me to my room. “Calm down it’s okay.” wait that’s not Teagan but I felt very relaxed in those hands. “Your heart is racing.” he says through a deep chuckle. “Mhmmm.” Is all I could get out because I feel it pounding against my chest and my back is against that person. I feel him running his fingers through my hair slowly and gently normally I would have beaten the crap out of someone for doing that but it made me feel safe and comfortable and there was this weird feeling in my stomach that I had never felt before. But I was brought from my thoughts by my door being slammed open that I didn’t know was closed. “Catherine stay awake, don’t close your eyes.” I didn’t realize that I was hyperventilating or that my eyes were almost closed until Teagan was kneeling in front of me. Yeah I kinda hyperventilate after I get mad because I get anxiety from it for some reason. “Come on sis please stay awake.” why was he talking like I had been shot or something? “Teagan why are you acting like I’m dying?” I looked to see him in tears. I had to adjust my vision and he was still in tears. “Because you might, stay calm don’t freak out but he had cinnamon and he rubbed it on your skin when you weren’t paying attention.” uh-o not cinnamon “and where is my epipen?” I say knowing that I needed it. “Mom went to aunt Jessica’s to get it. She should be back any minute now.” I can’t breathe, my throat is itchy. “Teagan.” I say trying to get my airway to open up. “Air.” was the only thing I could get out. He grabbed my hand and squeezed it. “I got it. Lay her flat, someone lay with her and hurry.” Mommy I couldn’t speak but I was happy to see her face. I could hear people talking but I couldn’t make out what they said. Then boom everything went black. “Mom she’s gonna wake up just give her a few more minutes.” I hear that every time I need to use that thing. Someone was still running his fingers through my hair. I slowly opened my eyes to find Ashlie looking down at me and he smiled. “Hey.” he said. “umm hi.” I say with a raspy voice. “Oh thank heavens, you’re okay.” yeah that’s my mom. “Mom I can’t breath.” I said after she hugged my neck. “Where is he at?” I ask ready to beat the living crap out of him. “He didn’t know so it wasn’t his fault.” Mom said. “Fine.” I say snuggling deeper into whatever was behind me. “Umm Cat stop moving into Ashlie.” O I jump up and run to the bathroom, locking the door behind me. My face was red from embarrassment. Like I mean if he was smiling at me when I woke up he had to have been on the bed but I don’t have any ounce of common since that says his head can’t come off his body and float. I smack my forehead and shake my head for being so dumb. I need to get ready and finish decorating. So I do just that and head down stairs. “I’m sorry I didn’t know.” Kaeden says. I just roll my eyes and continue walking. “Hey Cathrine you want me to finish helping you with your room?” Ashlie asks once he sees me. “Yeah that would be great thanks.” I say with a small smile. “I could help too.” I turn to see Kaeden with a creepy smile on his face and I start to feel uncomfortable. “Umm just Ashlie is fine thank you. T can I talk to you alone for just a minute?” I ask and he nods and we walk behind the stairs. “Whats up sis.” he says with a concerned look on his face. “I feel very uncomfortable around Kaeden.” I say point blank. “Okay I’ll be paying close attention.” He says then hugs me “thanks.” I say before going to get Ashlie to help me.
“Thanks for the help, it looks great.” I say once we finished
“No problem.”he responded. “Hey would you maybe wanna hang out sometime?” friends at last. “Yes I’d love that.” I couldn’t stop the grin on my face. “See you at school then.” he said “see you.” I said and he left.