Lea

Looking through the clothes that Marissa gave me, I chew on the inside of my mouth, having difficulty deciding which outfit to wear. Grabbing and changing into skinny jeans and a simple top, I eye myself in the mirror. My dark blonde hair tied neatly into a bun and I'm wearing nothing on my face except the dark grey bags beneath my eyes. Something I would've covered up with concealer if I had my makeup with me. 

Pushing the discontent to the back of my mind, I glance at the clock above the messily made bed and see that the second hand indicates it's half past one, realising that I've kept River waiting almost half an hour to get ready. 

Opening the door and walking towards the stairs, I see him climbing up the first few steps only to stop when he sees me. "Your parents are home, come down," he tells me. 

Nodding my head, he turns around and I follow in his footsteps to the bottom floor and towards the living room door. Bobbing his head in the direction of the wide open door, I turn from him to see my parents sat on the plush sofa around the square coffee table.

"They want to speak to you," he says. "I'll be in the kitchen." He finishes, giving me a friendly smile, which I return, before moving around me and heading to the kitchen. 

Watching my parents from this distance - their slump postures and serious demeanours - it's easy to guess what they have to say is not good news. I walk slowly into the room, rounding the coffee table before making my way to the sofa directly in front of them. 

"Hey," I speak. "What's going on?" Now that I'm seated before them, I can make out their distress more clearly. For my father, it's his sunken eyes that look as if they've seen little sleep for the past couple of days. 

"Lea..." My mother starts, but doesn't continue. Instead, she turns to my father.

"What's going on?" I ask again, glancing from my mother to my father anxiously.

"Lea...we visited the house this morning..." My father says. 

"And?" I say, nodding my head slowly and gesturing for them to continue with my hand. I knew this was coming.

"The builders said they couldn't retrieve much," Mum informs me. "Most of the upstairs furniture was broken, and during the collapse, some of the pipes had been broken and there was a leakage, so a lot of things were destroyed and not worth bringing out." 

"They said as they tidy it up, they'll give us what they can recover. But I don't think there will be much," My father finishes, his voice weak. 

It must be hard for him. The house for which he's been slaving away at work for, trying to pay off the mortgage, along with his possessions, are all gone. 

"But what about the house? Are they going to rebuild it." I question.

"Yes, the insurance company said it would cover the cost of rebuilding. It will take a while, though." He responds. At least that's some good news. 

I look down at my hands, watching how my fingers intertwine and squeeze together tightly, turning the skin yellow. It's something I do when I'm stressed. Sighing gently to myself, I think of all my belongings in my house. My clothes, my shoes, my makeup, my laptop, and phone. They're all very materialistic things, but it's still hard to know that your possessions are pretty much gone. Some of them, like the personal photographs or the priceless gifts, cannot be replaced. It sucks.

You could have it worse, Lea. 

"So, what now?" I finally inquire after my parents give me a few minutes to comprehend the situation.

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