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“Those who do not remember their past are condemned to repeat it”, droned Grace’s history teacher, Mr. Miller. The loud and irritating school bell rang just as he was about to assign the class their homework.

“Don’t forget, your history assignment is due by the end of winter break !”, he yelled, positive that no one had heard him. Grace Eastwood speed walked  to her locker, glad that it was the end of the day. She quickly grabbed all of her things, and rushed outside, the cold wind hitting her face,making her instantly squint her eyes. Taking her first steps outside into the freezing cold weather, she immediately began to run. Running was something that she was used to now, she had to do it everyday. Her little sister, Lilith, goes to Bay -Head Elementary. Unfortunately, it ends at 1:pm, two hours before her high school ends. The thought of Lilith being all alone for 2 hours made her heart ache. But she couldn’t do anything about it. No one else can pick her up . She isn’t an orphan, at least not anymore, but let’s just say her foster parents aren’t exactly the most responsible. She ran towards Bay- Head elementary, stumbling over her own feet. Not being able to run any longer because of her soring feet, she slowed down into a walk. Breathing heavily, she finally arrived at Bay- Head elementary , where she saw her sister on a set of some old, rusty swings. The minute Lilith saw Grace, she jumped of the swings, landing heavily on her feet.

“Gracy!”,Lilith screamed excitedly.  She ran towards her older sister, engulfing her into a big hug. Grace welcomed her with open arms, also very excited to see the one person she cares about most.

“Hey,Lilith”, she whispered softly to her sister. Grace removed herself from the big hug, and instead held her hand. “Come on, let’s go”, she told her quietly . She wasn’t going to her residence, no, she was going to the library. She has to go to the library everyday. Not by force, but by choice. You might be wondering why a 14 year old girl would go to a library everyday with her little sister instead of hanging out with friends and going to the mall. But she can’t do that. She needs the money, not for clothes or any other unnecessary items, she needs it to survive. They reached the library, the warm environment very refreshing compared to the freezing weather outside. They were welcomed by Ethel Smith, the friendly old librarian.

“Oh, Grace, Lilith  there you are!”, she said excitedly. Grace did her usual routine. She put Lilith in the kid’s section, where she immediately started playing with the little bricks. She  took of her school bag and took the library cart, making her way towards the shelves. Yes, Grace Eastwood works at a library. Grace needed to work somewhere, but you can’t exactly be having a 14 year old working at a place like Mcdonalds. The library was the only place where she truly felt safe. There was something about being surrounded by a bunch of books that gave her a sensation of welcome. Plus, Ethel was the only one who would hire her. Sure, she only got $3 an hour but it was better than nothing. While shelving the books,.Grace saw all the scratches and bruises on the her hand. These aren’t  the little injuries you get when playing a sport, no, this was something much more serious. She had to suffer from it, and she couldn’t tell anyone about it. . Grace lowered her head, she felt that someone was watching her. She hurriedly shelved everything back in place, according to the authors last name of course. Walking towards the little desk that was marked as “library services”, she grabbed her math homework first, which happens to be algebra. Reading the first question, she quickly became confused. “ X3 +7x2- 7x+6 - 4/24+7 = ?”, she let out a loud huff, irritated with herself. Math has always been one of her worst subjects, whether she liked it or not.  Noticing her sister softly singing to herself , she got up from her seat and made her her way towards her 5 year old sister. It wouldn't be a lie if Grace had said that Lilith was the only one she truly cared for. After losing her parents at age 12, Grace had always been the only one to care for her, leaving Lilith to only care for Grace. But of course, Lilith was only 5, she had no idea about the dangers they have to face. Grace, on the other hand, was planning something big. It wasn’t a surprise party, or something that would leave everyone with a smile on their face. Grace was going to run away.


Ethel came in holding a big tray of fresh warm cookies. This was her way of telling them they had to leave. By offering them a nice, warm cookie on their way out. The both relauntacly stood up. Grabbing her things, Grace instantly held her sisters hand. She zipped up her old jacket, one that hasn’t been changed for a while, and doing the same to her sister. Ethel escorted them on their way out, handing them one of her warm, delicious cookies. Walking out of the warm library, they were hit with a dusk of wind, causing them both to hide their faces. They had to walk for about a mile or two, for them to reach the place where grace dreaded to go. But she had to, it wasn’t her choice, or anyone for that matter of fact.  Taking a deep breath, she shakily opened the door. She was still breathing heavily while entering the house, but she was used to it, she had to do this every single day. Grace squeezed her sister’s hand, silently telling her not to make a sound. The door made a little creaking noise, which sent shivers up her spine. She silently prayed her guardians were fast asleep, she knew that some severe injuries would occur if they had caught her coming home this late. Not that they would know right away who it was. Her guardians adopted her for the money they would receive, not because they would be happy opening their home to them. The money that they receive doesn’t even go to necessary items. Like medicine and such. No, the money is wasted on the completely destructible and harmful commodities.  The money is being wasted on alcohol. Not just tiny bottles of alcohol, but bottles and bottles that are too harmful for the human body to digest. The living room had broken bottles of alcohol and old cigarette packets all over the ground. The kitchen had pizza crusts all over the place. On the counter, chairs,and dining tables. Of course, Grace has never even used the dining table , how could she? She found her guardians,Laura and Max, passed out on the old, stained couches. They were gripping alcohol bottles, cigarettes dangling loosely from their mouths. Grace couldn’t help but gulp, she was deathly afraid of them, and wouldn’t tell a soul about her situation. But she found her own. She had done a lot research about her real parents. She still remembered them, like it was yesterday she last saw them. How their eyes would light up everytime they would smile. How they would take a picture for everything, even if it was for the simplest things. She smiled faintly at the thought of her beloved parents. She felt lump in her throat, tears started to stream down her face. She underestimated them. She blamed herself that she didn’t appreciate them enough. But, it wasn’t really her fault. Of course she appreciated them, with all her heart. She just wished they were there with her, right now. While doing her research, she found out that her mother had a second cousin that lives right next to the city they currently live in. She had emailed him, telling him that she would love to visit. He answered, telling her that it would be a pleasure. She had a plan. A plan that may turn her life upside down. She had adoption papers, she had gotten them from a book Ethel had given her, and would try to convince him to adopt her. Tomorrow. That was the day she would be running away. Taking a deep breath, she let Lilith climb on her back. She didn’t want her to risk getting injured because of the pieces of glass everywhere. She  climbed up the stairs, all the way up to the attic. The attic is where Grace and Lilith would sleep, and if they could find any extra pieces of food, then eat as well. The attic was now a familiar place to Grace. She set Lilith down, doing the same to her bag, and sat down on the old, slightly broken, wooden chair. Lilith gave a big yawn,her eyes flickering shut. Grace got up, took a blanket that she had gotten from the library, and tucked Lilith to sleep. Grace felt a flicker of hope burst through her chest. All she wanted was to keep Lilith safe, and soon that might just happen. She curled up next to Lilith and started playing with her hair. That feeling in her chest wouldn’t go away, and she was grateful. Hope was all she needed, and that’s all she would ever need. She slowly let her eyes droop, tomorrow was her day and nothing was going to stop her.

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