The next morning, I wake up to the sound of my ring tone playing. It is one of those preset tones that come with the phone when you buy it; so simple and cheerful that it makes me want to pound it to bits. It's odd how things are for me now-everything upsets me. I'm becoming so different than I used to be. People say that I'm just being stubborn and pessimistic, seeing the downside of everything. I would be saying the same thing if I were in someone else's shoes.

I rub my eyes, sitting up in my bed and grabbing my cell phone. A terrible picture that I snapped of Theo is being displayed on the screen, his name written on top, the 'accept' and 'decline' options on the bottom. I glance at the digital clock on my bedside table, seeing that it's only five-forty in the morning. What the hell is he doing up so early?

I press the 'accept' button, bringing the device to my ear. "Hello?"

"Hey, Sadie." Theo's voice is tired; he probably just woke up, too.

"What are you doing up?" I ask, lying back down, the phone wedged in between my ear and my pillow. I close my eyes, listening to Theo sigh on the other end of the line.

"I'm always up this early. My dad makes me bring the dogs outside before I get ready for school."

I knit my eyebrows. "Since when do you have dogs?"

I hear him laughing before he says, "They were at the groomer's while you were over yesterday."

"Oh my god, Theo, really?" I scoff. "A groomer? Can't you just buy a brush at the pet store and do it yourself?"

"We can pay for it," he mumbles.

I sit back up, letting my legs dangle off the side of my bed. My toes just barely touch the cold hardwood, sending shivers up my spine. "Thanks for rubbing it in," I say sarcastically.

"I was not!"

I roll my eyes, standing and stretching my spare arm over my head and behind my back. "Anyway, why were you calling?"

"I need you to come over before school starts," Theo says. "There's something I need to show you."

"Okay," I say, managing a smile. "I'll be there."

After we hang up, I drop my phone on my bed and stand there in the middle of my room, rubbing my hands over my face.

I had a dream last night about my brother-a nightmare, actually. He was sitting in a white room without windows, furniture, or wall decor, his hands bound behind his back in a pool of bright red blood. I was watching from a control room with thousands of screens covering the walls, all projecting the view of Levi. He was yelling my name over and over again and eventually started sobbing as he said it, but I could do nothing to save him. I called back, banging on the screens and crying and trying my hardest for him to hear me, but nothing worked. Eventually, his voice dropped to a whisper, and then he just stop talking all together. I watched it all and could do nothing. I was trapped within barriers, and I realize now that those barriers were the authority. I could be doing so much more if the police and my foster parents weren't holding me back. I've come to the point where I'm not scared anymore; I just want Levi.

I walk to the bathroom and start my normal morning routine, jumping in the shower and cleaning my greasy hair and broken-out face. After about ten minutes I step out and wrap a towel around myself and another on top of my head, picking out a simple hoodie and jeans to wear to school today. I comb out my wet hair and sweep it to the side, parting it into three and braiding it down. Applying simple makeup, I look in the mirror and see how exhausted I look, even with my skin hidden. The issue is affecting me physically just as much as it is emotionally.

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