When I was six I met my brother’s best friend for the first time, he was mean to me, but he was cute, and I had a huge crush on him.
“I’m home!” Matt shouts as I giggle rushing down the stairs and jump into my older brothers arms.
“Matty!” I squeal.
“Hey Livvy, how was school?” He smiles
“It was ok I guess” I shrug as he lets me down and turns to a boy behind him.
“Who that?” I ask.
“That’s Tyler, he’s my new friend” Matt smiles
“Hi” I wave to the boy as he completely blanks me, I frown.
“He doesn’t talk much Livvy, give him a chance” Matt whispers in my ear.
“Hi Tyler, I’m Liv, if you don’t like to talk that’s ok. Matt talks enough for all of us” I giggle as Matt tickles me and I run away.
“Olivia sweety can you come here please” My mother calls from her sewing room as I sigh.
“Yes mummy?” I say as she’s holding up yet another dress.
“Come try this on, you’ll look beautiful in it” She says.
“I don’t like dresses!” I stomp angrily. I hated that she used me like a barbie to dress up.
“Olivia, do as you are told!” My father booms behind me as I flinch from his loud voice and put the dress on.
“Oh look how gorgeous she looks Roger” Mum squeals.
“Can I take it off now?” I groan.
“Oh for god sake Olivia, act like a girl. Go show your brother” Mum sighs.
“But…” I murmur.
“Olivia Davies do as you are told!” Dad booms as I sigh, turn and head out to the lounge where Matt and Tyler are sat playing on a console.
“Matty, mum made me wear this and show you” I moan as he turns and bursts out laughing.
“She realises you hate dresses right?” He laughs.
“It’s not funny Matty!” I shout and stomp my foot.
“What a brat” Tyler murmurs as I glare at him.
“You’re mean” I stick out my tongue childishly and storm out the room.
I bump straight into our dad as he glares at me, dad had never been too good with his words with me and he scared me a little. He was huge!
“Watch where you are going Olivia!” He snaps as I whimper and nod, running off to my room and slamming the door as I take off the dress and slump in my comfy teardrop swinging chair.
Things started to change as Matt and I got older, he was with his best friend all the time and I didn’t get on with Tyler at all. He picked on me all the time.
When I started high school at eleven my brother had just turned sixteen. He and Tyler loved going out to parties and they never had time for me.
I would sit in my swinging chair and just read my days away. I had no friends and I hated going out, I was quiet all the time.
Mum had finally given up on me ever wearing her dresses as she called me impossible and began to ignore me. Dad would just get angry with me and say I was ungrateful and didn’t deserve the life he gave me.
I learnt to ignore their hurtful words and just got on with my life avoiding them.
My first day of high school I walked with Matt and Tyler as they were starting sixth form.
“I’m nervous Matty” I wring my hands together as I look at the huge new school.
“Don’t be, you’ll be fine Livvy” He smiles and gives me a hug before gently pushing me forward.
“Bye” I wave at them as Tyler scowls at me.
“I’ll meet you out here after school Livvy!” Matt shouts as I nod and walk slowly into the school.
“HI!” A bright-eyed girl appears suddenly in front of me, all excited.
“Uh…Hi” I murmur.
“I’m Ava” She grins and hugs me awkwardly.
“I’m Liv” I reply.
“Ava! Will you stop hugging people! You’re going to scare them off! How are you going to make friends if you scare people off!” A boy a little older than us runs up with a cheeky smile.
“Liv this is my older brother Josh, he’s in year nine, he thinks he’s so cool” Ava rolls her eyes and I giggle as Josh shoves her playfully.
“I AM cool…Are you Matt’s sister?” Josh asks and I nod.
“YOU’RE Matt Davies sister!” Ava squeals.
“Yes, is that a problem?” I murmur.
“He was like the most popular kid in school with his bad boy best friend Tyler” Josh smirks as he puts an arm around each of our shoulders and leads us forward.
I didn’t know it right then, but that friendship, in that moment, would be the best friendship I had, they would be my life. Ava and Josh saved me more times than they could ever know.
Matt and I were, however, oblivious to what was going to happen as we returned home from school that day after we had sat blissfully unaware in our classes.
“Your brother is so cute” Ava sighs as we exit the school that day as I look at her in shock and fake gag.
“Oh let me guess Liv, you’re totally into Tyler, bad boy extravaganza” Josh smirks at me as I shove him, blushing.
“No way! Aww how cute!” Ava squeals clapping her hands.
“If you guys tell anyone, I will murder you in your sleep” I hiss as they both chuckle at me.
“Hey! Livvy!” Matt waves at me as we head towards them waiting at the gates.
“Hey Matty” I smile, I don’t bother talking to Tyler, he’d only insult me anyway.
“What’s up Josh” Matt nods at Josh.
“Hey man, not much, just been watching out for the girls here today” Josh smirks.
“We didn’t need you” Ava scoffs as I giggle.
“I hope you’re making sure no guys go after my little sister Josh” Matt says sternly.
“Mmmaaattttt” I groan.
“Who’d want her?” Tyler mumbles under his breath.
“Who’d want YOU?” I snap at him as he smirks cockily.
“Plenty of girls sweetheart” He winks as he pushes off the gate and walks over to a girl as she begins to flirt with him before he kisses her hard.
“Such a man-whore” I roll my eyes.
“Ignore him” Matt rolls his eyes.
“I usually do” I smirk.
“We need to get home apparently Dad has an announcement” Matt mumbles as he looks at his phone with a frown.
“Ok” I sigh.
“Hey! You’ve got my number right?” Ava smiles.
“Yes Ava I have your number, I’ll text you later” I smile as she squeals and hugs me.
“See you later Liv!” Josh waves with a grin as Matt and I begin our walk home.
“Yo! Wait up!” Tyler jogs behind us, annoyed.
“We gotta get home dude” Matt says.
“We were supposed to go out tonight Matt” Tyler groans.
“I need to deal with some family stuff Tyler, Dad needs to talk to us” Matt answers.
“Fine, just call me when you’re done” Tyler grumbles and turns, walking away.
“Why are you friends with him? He’s a dick” I murmur.
“He’s not a dick Livvy, he just finds things difficult with others. He’s fine once you get to know him. He’s had it tough kid” Matt sighs.
“Doesn’t mean he needs to be so mean to me though”
“Listen Liv, you can’t tell anyone this, but he comes from a family where his dad used to beat him and his mother. When I first met him he was beaten up that morning and that’s why I took him home with me that day. He comes to ours for a type of relief. His mother hates him being home around his dad. But lately his dad’s been really ill, he could die, and Tyler doesn’t know how to handle it, so he’s on edge Liv. He loves his mum and doesn’t want to see her hurt. Melissa…His mum is a real nice lady too, you’d like her, she’s a nurse up at the hospital” He says as I look at him in shock.
“His dad beats them…” I murmur as Matt takes my hand as we walk the rest of the way home.
“Remember don’t tell anyone you know Livvy” Matt says, and I nod.
“I promise” I answer as he unlocks the front door and lets us in.
Suitcases are piled up at the bottom of the stairs as we look at them in shock.
“Dad?! Mum?!” Matt shouts.
“In here!” Mum calls out from her sewing room as we walk slowly towards it to notice it’s now empty.
“What’s going on?” Matt asks with a frown.
“Your father and I are going away” She smiles.
“What do you mean you’re going away? What about us?” I ask timidly.
“We have work opportunities to deal with, you will be fine with your brother. Maybe you’ll finally grow up” Dad walks up behind us.
“What?!” Matt shouts as Dad glares at him.
“So you’re abandoning us…” I murmur.
“Oh grow the fuck up Olivia. You’re in high school now and your brother is old enough to take care of you” Dad growls at me as I flinch and storm out the room.
“Livvy! Wait Livvy!” Matt shouts after me as I bolt out the front door and run as fast as I can to my favourite spot, a small lake through a small section of woodlands as I slumped down and sobbed as it got darker.