Chapter One

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Chapter One

When trying to describe to someone why it is you do what you do, often times you find yourself with nothing to say. Most people don’t know why it is they do what they do. They wake up in the morning, brush their teeth, dress, eat a well-balanced, FDA approved breakfast of the week and then trudge onto whatever nine-to-five their college education was not able to provide for them and instead they were able to settle for. It pays just enough for you not to be on the streets and just little enough for you to never get ahead in life.

Eventually these people die and nobody but close relatives and a few good friends are left to care. As the years pass and their bone turns to dirt or ash their stories are left to the wind and dirt eventually creating new life in the earth around them and while they are not remembered they have somehow contributed to the universe just having been alive.

Yes, most people can’t tell you why it is they do what they do, but that was never the case for Francesca Persephone.

On this day, working her eight-to-whenever she was able to finally get off and go shower for ten minutes, eat a protein bar and then head back in, she had been sitting with little Anna Banks. Anna had been committed to the facility nearly six months prior and still had yet to have been diagnosed with a solid condition for her violent behaviors, hallucinations and suicidal depression. Her hair was a deeper red than blood and the eyes, while dead, couldn’t have been more vibrant in color as they were nearly orange. The girl was only 7 years old and she had already seen more than any set of adult eyes could compare to.

Francesca, better known as Frankie to most, knelt down before little Anna Banks and took her tiny hands into her fairly large palms. Frankie was accustomed to being much larger than most, statuesque yes but nearly a foot taller than the average woman and stronger than most men, often times compared to as a modern day amazon. Her hair was always neatly tied back, sandy blond and nearly brown with such rare exposure to the natural daylight outside, light makeup around the eyes which would soon sweat off after this emergency or that panic attack. She was beautiful but, much like a pearl, trapped in a tough exterior most could not break past.

The room was fairly silent all morning. Anna was normally Frankie’s first stop. It wasn’t due to any bias or even the predisposition to the room during normal work ethic but if there was ever a way to start off a day it was to visit the girl who imagined more than solar systems combined.

As their skin touched, Frankie’s eyes shut tightly, watering instantly and tears falling down her cheeks. Anna Banks sat quietly, unblinking. Her body went cold and hard much like a statue as she was giving over all she had to the kind nurse she’d grown to trust in such months. Frankie continued to tear up and nearly stopped breathing. Her chest was now racing up and down at the strong heart beat pounding within the confines of her chest and sounds rushing past her. She couldn’t help but think that this was what a dog felt when sticking his head out the window.

The two sat like this for half an hour each day but on this occasion, Frankie had a feeling their journey together would be cut short. It was one of the most unfortunate feelings she ever felt when a life was soon to separate from her path in any aspect.

“Anna? Can you hear me?” Frankie asked as she walked blindly through the dark forest. This place was normally a paradise. It was where Anna escaped from the horrors she’d faced as a very tiny baby and young child. Quickly her mind was able to capture pure Utopia, a literal Shangri-La for children to travel when parents fought, kids teased and the monsters would not go away. With that having been said, the dark place which had once been all sunshine and daisies was now darker than most horror stories which caused Frankie to realize something was coming.

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