Chapter 1: My Life
It never seemed to hit me on how incredibly stupid I could be. Stupid in the sense of decision-making, not academically. At least that's what they told me. Because I live in Wickbury Orphanage where the maids are the masters and the orphans are the maids, I know more than most fifteen year olds. However,other times, I could be simply stupid. For instance, saying yes to Ms. Collins, our keeper, when she tells me I'm going to be adopted, even though I don't know who's taking me in. I’m already fifteen and being adopted at such an age is pretty rare. I wanted a family to take care of me. That was all I wanted.
It was a sunny Sunday morning in Manhattan when she told me about the “great” news. I was about the fifth floor landing scrubbing the floor when Melissa, one of the maids, came up to me. She was a great woman of twenty. With a great big belly that threatened to pop the buttons off her dress, a hog’s face and a mustache, it always boggled me how her maid uniform fit her. And as usual, she was clutching a chocolate bar and a bucket of soapy water on the other. As much as her attitude and hog-like mannerisms are incredibly annoying, I find it quite amusing to see her devouring the chocolate that should have been for the orphans like me, skipping happily to the television room while the floorboards alarmingly creaked. Weird isn’t it? I’m not much into food though some people might say that I desperately need it but really, I’d rather be left alone in my room to read my books in peace.
She stared at me with her beady black little eyes. I kneeled there still scrubbing the floor with the already black water.
“Ms. Collins’s callin’ fer ‘ya.” She said with her unusual slang.
“Why?” I asked.
“How should I know, stupid?” she threw the bucket full of water beside me, spilling soap-water on the newly cleaned floor.
“Link!” she screamed at the top of her lungs. A moment later, a chestnut-haired boy came running up the stairs.
“Yes, Ms. Melissa?” he said solemnly but he when he looked at me, I swear his blue-green eyes were laughing.
“Clean the floors will ‘ya? Cissy here got a good news comin’ her way.” She continued to eat her chocolate, smacking her lips joyously. If only I would not lose my dinner if I kicked her on the knee, I would.
“Yes, Ms. Melissa.” He took the scrub gently from my hands. He raised an eyebrow questioningly.
“I don’t know.” I whispered as I wiped my hands on my apron.
“Tell me later?” he asked, smiling.
“Do I have a choice?” I replied, also smiling.
He started scrubbing as Melissa walked me down the staircase to Ms. Collins office.
“We’ll get in,” she said. “I ain’t gonna stand here waitin’ fer ‘ya to walk.” She continued nastily.
“I’m sorry,” was all I said. I knocked on the door.
“Come in,” came the reply of a shrill voice.
Nervously, I opened the door. Being called to the Keeper’s office was very uncommon and often resulted to two things: punishment for a crime you somehow “forgot” or did not commit and second, a family might adopt you. In my ten years of residing in Wickbury Orphanage, I have only been called twice. Once was when I was eight, I was whipped. I did not commit the deed, of course, but nevertheless I was punished for stealing. The second time is, at the moment, I am reliving to you.
The room was just as how I remembered it. The sleepy, sticky smell of Ms. Collins’ perfume hanged on the air making everything blurry. The curtains were drawn. Ms. Collins hates sunlight. Books were stacked along the walls, a mountain of papers were on her desk (probably bills to pay), and about a dozen bottles of rum littered the floor. And sitting there before me, with a bottle on one hand, was Ms. Collins.
“Good evening Ms. Storm” she murmured and took a gulp from her bottle. Actually, Ms. Collins,it is morning.I wanted to say but she’s drunk again so what’s the use? Her eyes were bloodshot, her skin a graying corpse and her hair, a matted mess. She wore a red tweed jacket over a Guns and Roses shirt, sky-blue sweats, and moccasins over white socks. You would call her a fashion disaster but we would call her a walking entertainment. Sometimes at evening, she would roam around the building “checking” out on us (honestly, I think she’s lost) drunk, obviously and she would vomit on the floor and slip on her own dirt. It was very entertaining to watch.
|Kaya Scodelario||as Narcissa Storm|
|Jake Abel||as Axel Hale|
|Logan Lerman||as Link Steele|
|Rachel Hurd Wood||as Valerie Hale|
|Georgie Henley||as Heather Hale|
|Julia Roberts||as Elizabeth Hale|
|Robert Downey Jr.||as Marcus Hale|
|Cameron Bright||as Connor Hook|
|Morgan Freeman||as Robby Hook|