I practically deep throat my cereal.

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Whenever Trevor leaves for work early, my morning starts off amazing. I wake up without feeling like I need to watch over my shoulder. I don't have to walk on tip-toes or silently wish he doesn't hurt me right before college. This morning I take my time getting ready with a faint smile on my lips.

I often wonder when I'm smiling whether I'm allowed to with the thoughts swirling round in my head. How can I appear happy when in reality I'm miserable? I've always prided myself in my smile being the only thing Trevor cannot take away from me and despite the hell inside my mind, that won't change.

This particular morning, my smile doesn't last long. I glance around the kitchen, letting out a small sigh. The stench in here is almost unbearable and I try to ignore the rubbish littering the floors.

"This whole place is a damn mess," I mutter, clearing a section of the table so I can sit down with my cereal. The rest of the house besides from my room mirrored each other, filthy and cluttered. It wasn't always like this . . . Dad and Mum were so house proud until he died and everything went downhill.

I am mid-way through crunching down on my golden balls cereal when Mum enters the kitchen. I glance at her from the corner of my eye, my shoulders automatically tensing in her presence. She takes a seat beside me, oblivious to the rubbish surrounding her. Trevor must have definitely burned eighty percent of her brain cells . . .

"What do you want?" I ask her abruptly, my tone hostile. Mum lets out a sigh and I feel her burning stare seep it's way into my face.

"Emily, don't speak to me like that."

"Do you not like it? Yeah neither do I when Trevor's laying into me." I mutter sarcastically, my words dripping with hate for her.

She doesn't deserve a chance to speak to me, I've given her too many. There comes a point in your life when you forgive multiple times because you care for someone but eventually you have to let go because they keep shitting all over your chances.

Mum clears her throat, acting completely oblivious to my anger and resentment towards her. I breathe calmly through my nose before taking another bite of my cereal.

"I just want to eat my breakfast in peace." I tell her, hoping she'll stand up and leave me alone.

"Your Aunt Mandy has invited us to her wedding. It's on Saturday and we're going whether you like it or not."

I practically deep throat my cereal and begin sputtering milk and half eaten cereal everywhere. The place is a mess so it doesn't really make much difference. . .

"What?" I ask in surprise, wiping my mouth with the back of my hand. I notice a new expensive looking watch perched onto her wrist — courtesy of Trevor, no doubt.

Aunt Mandy is my Mum's older sister who I haven't seen for nine years since my fathers funeral. From what I remember she's a big woman with black wild crazy hair who has a tendency to scream instead of talk. As far as I know, Mum hasn't spoken to her in nine years either. She's probably on her fifth husband by now but that doesn't surprise me.

Mandy goes through men like running tap water.

"Yes she wants to make amends with us and has invited us all to her wedding. Trevor is more than happy to go so I don't see what the problem is."

Her face practically glows when she speaks about Trevor.

Why is she so blind?

Can she not see the bruise under my eyes or my red scalp? Or hear my cries for Trevor to stop?

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