Prologue

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   My name is Sadie Hall, I'm eleven-years-old, and my life has been insanely boring. I know, most kids probably say that, but I'm serious! Of course, I didn't realize that until very recently.  Thinking back on it now, I realize I should have noticed sooner that something was wrong.

   My biological mother, a woman named Christine, was 19-years-old when she put me up for adoption. No name, no regret, just a soft kiss on my head and off I went. I understand, of course, it wouldn't have been easy to find a job, start a life, and care for me all at the same time.

    I was adopted by a man when I was 2-months-old, according to the papers they gave me. I don't know his name, how old he is, or even what he looks like. He brought me here, a place I hear the adults call "Haven". 

   Growing up I was happy, oblivious, and I didn't understand why some of the older kids seemed so sad. I could never ask them, because we all spoke different languages and I'd never once met another kid who spoke English like me. It was almost as if they didn't want us to communicate, but didn't want to go so far as to muzzle us either. I asked my 'mother', Maggie, if she would help me learn another language, one that I heard a younger girl speaking at Recess. She only gave me a sad look, shook her head, and left me alone in my room. That was the first time I ever felt lonely, the first time I felt doubt. It was the first time I really wanted out.

   I'd wished there was a legitimate excuse for why I wanted out, but I didn't have one, aside from not being able to talk with anyone. The meals are delicious, and the beds are comfortable. Even The television tucked into the corner, the one that will only play the same five cartoons, was in HD, with sound quality so clear it sounded like Mickey Mouse was standing right in front of you. And every day, Maggie would bring me Crayons and a new color-by-number, or sometimes a puzzle book.

   She's nice too, always smiling and laughing. She'll often sit on my bed while I color, and ask about my day.  Although, every now and then, I catch her taking notes in a black journal. Moms aren't supposed to do that, right? I mean, they don't do that in the cartoons.

   Then there's the stuff that I actually had to look for, things I didn't notice until I got older. It was around the time that the cartoons and color-by-numbers got boring that I actually took the time to explore the room itself.

   If you peel back the lavender wallpaper, you'd find a poorly painted brick wall. Or, you could lift the plush, brown rugs to reveal a dirty concrete floor.

   But what really got to me, were the doors. From the inside, I'd covered mine with stickers, and old drawings. But one day, as I was coming in from recess, I glanced up at my door, and saw the outside of my door. It had at least three deadbolt locks, which would seal me inside my homey little prison.

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