Sneak Pick Of My Book: Bad Blood By Karen Herbert

Bad Blood: Chapter 1

Crushed

          I’m scared, troubled, angry, limited, and confused. Is something wrong with me? How can a person that has so much people in her life feel so alone? Is this the Annabelle my parents want me to be? Or is this the Annabelle I want to be? I’ve come to the realization that this is my life and I have to do what’s best for me. It’s harder for me out of all the children my parents have. I’m the second middle child. My brother Robert Graham is now eighteen. I, Annabelle Graham am sixteen. My sister Caitlin Graham is about to be sixteen; I’m older by ten months. My youngest brother Johnny Graham is four. My mother Jullissa is thirty-two and still gets mistaken for being my sister and not my mother. My father Rick Graham is thirty-four and looks pretty young too. Did I forget to mention my mother is two weeks pregnant, again? My parents both work in a blood donating business. My father runs the money part and my mother makes sure the blood gets to its location. They run half the businesses in California, Alaska, Florida, Mississippi, Texas, Antarctica, and Kentucky. We’re pretty rich, that’s probably why we move so much. They promised that this is our finally move. We moved to Anchorage, Alaska about two weeks ago. Okay I think that’s enough information, you can find out the rest; let’s get to reality.

          “Caitlin let’s go I want to go to the movies. Hello it’s almost twelve o’clock I actually wanna meet some cute boys. Ugh,” I yelled from the bottom of the stairs with Johnny.

          “Hold your horses I’m putting make-up on,” Caitlin yelled back

“Why the heck are you putting make-up on for? Nobody’s gonna be looking at you so just come down here now, you know what I’m leaving.”

I was getting so annoyed I decided that I wasn’t going to wait for her, I grabbed Johnny’s hand and started for the door but she ran down the steps so I didn’t really have a choice. I didn’t have a driver’s license further more a permit. So we had to walk five blocks because Robert left at ten to go somewhere. When I got to the movies I checked the movie times and the movie started at one thirty. As I turned around I saw the cutest boy and my world stopped. Strangely, he was with my brother Robert. I walked over to Robert giving him a look as if he was missing something. The boy was tapped by a little girl and she pulled him to the soda machine I’m guessing that’s his little sister she looked about five years old.

“What’s up Lil’ sis?” he said giving me a shove.

“Hey, I didn’t know you meet people so fast down here.”

“Oh who Drake?” he laughed.

“No,” I said sarcastically “Or did you make more friends I should know about?”

Just as soon as Drake was about to walk over to formally introduce himself to me Johnny started crying, he was sitting on a bench behind me in the far corner. When I looked over at him Caitlin was gone. I tried to spot her and when I did she was with a group of girls laughing and talking. I walked over to Johnny and sat next to him. He eventually stopped crying.

“You know hermano,” which means brother in Spanish “Life isn’t going to be any easier when the new baby comes along, so try not to cry.”

I really tried to talk to him but all he kept saying was “movie” so eventually I stopped trying and didn’t pay him much attention. I glanced over to where Drake and Robert were standing. They were coming over to me, my heart started racing. As they approached me Drake stuck out his hand.

“Hi, I’m Drake,” he said.

“Annabelle,” I responded while shaking his hand. Drake sat down next to Johnny.  Robert sat down next to me and I laid my head on Robert’s shoulder.

“Life would be a whole lot easier if everyone stopped leaving and ignoring my hermano,” I said.

“I guess he’s just fortunate to have you,” he smiled.

“Shut up,” I laughed. We were whispering and making joking silently until we were interrupted by the cute boy Drake.

“When did you find out about your arranged marriage?” he asked. Robert and I exchanged looks and burst into laughter.

“What are you talking about? Arranged marriage?” I question.

“Did I say something wrong?” he asked.

“Dude, this is my sister,” Robert said

“My sincere apologizes”.

“Robbie I’m going for the movie tickets please watch hermano for me I promise I won’t be long,” I said.

“Fine hurry up,” he said kind of annoyed. I walked over to the ticket booth and ordered two tickets to some children’s movie and walked back to Robert.

“I’m gonna get going I kinda want to watch this movie and leave this place,” I said.

“Okay, I’m leaving right now,” Robert said. Just as we were getting Johnny’s toys together we were interrupted yet again by Drake, I instantly thought he was cute but oddly annoying.

He began to smile shyly “Hey Rob do you need a ride?” he asked

“Sure why not,” Robert said. I walk over to Caitlin to tell her Johnny and I were going to see a movie-trying to hide the fact that I was annoyed with her-then we were leaving but Robert has a ride so this is her chance to go home. She exchanged numbers with the girls she met and started walking behind me. When we got to Drake’s car I introduced her to him.

“Okay guys see you later,” I said as I walked inside the movie theaters. I handed my ticket to the short, chucky, dark skin man and went into the theater the movie was playing in. the theater the movie was playing in. the movie was about a hour long.

When it was finished Johnny and I walked home. When I got in the house it was about three-o-six and I didn’t see anyone so I went into Johnny’s room, put his toys away, and told him to stay in his room. I locked the gate so he couldn’t leave. I went into my room, got my towel, got into the shower, rinsed off, came out, dried my skin, and put on a pair of shorts and a shirt. I combed out my hair slicked it into a nice ponytail leaving my bang out. I went to go get Johnny from his room so I could feed him but he wasn’t in his room.

“Hermano? Johnny?  Johnny!” I yelled. Suddenly I felt lightheaded but then I heard Johnny mocking me.

“Hermana, hermana, hermana,” he said. I heard Robert laugh.

“He’s down here Lil’ sis,” Robert yelled. I ran down stairs and went into the kitchen.

“Stop playing games with me,” I said and he sucked his teeth at me.

“He was crying.” I just walked away and went into the living room to get Johnny and was shocked to see Drake on my couch, in my house, watching my television. I stopped sudden and caught myself before he realized I was staring at him. Before I could adjust to the circumstances Robert came out of nowhere with a water gun wetting me.

“Robert what the hell?” I yelled.

“Chill out Lil’ sis, it’s just water,” he said.

Both Robert and Drake started laughing but I didn’t understand what was so funny and that bothered me. I grabbed the cup that was in Drake’s hand and slashed it in Robert’s face. The big ear to ear grin was gone. I had completely washed it away. I felt bad but he had it coming. I thought about saying sorry with the three seconds he gave me but he picked me up, threw me on the couch, and started shaking me. I started smacking and punching him to get him off of me which obviously wasn’t working and then he smacked me so hard I swear Caitlin heard it from upstairs. The slap echoed in my ear, it was as if gravity had stopped for seconds. He let me go.

“Bell I’m sorry,” he pled.

I walked to the mirror by the stairs, glanced at my face and saw the hands of my brother’s finger prints. My complexion is between light skin and brown skin and his print was bright red. I rested my hands on the table in front of me and looked down.

“Wow,” I said laughing a little even though it was nothing funny about what just happened. I grabbed my coat, put on my shoes, and left. I wanted to go somewhere no one would be but where? I kept walking and I heard my name being called but I refused to turn around for the possibility that it could have been Robert so I didn’t stop. When I got to a bench in front of a pizza shop called “Big Al’s” I sat there and waited for him to come. My feet throbbed from the constant walking I had done. I turned my head and it wasn’t Robert, it was Drake.

He broke the silence “Are you okay?” he asked.

I looked at him and laughed, “He’s my brother I’ll get over it.” He put his arm around my shoulders and I rested my head on him. I thought to myself, I hardly knew this boy, what am I doing?

“What if I kissed you?” he asked. I held up with his arm still around me, as we stared into each other eyes.

“Where do I know you from?” I asked.

“I-I…” he began but before he could answer my question I heard my name being called. I turned my head towards the voice, it was Caitlin.

She ran over to us “Let’s go you have Johnny home crying because he thinks you aren’t coming back. Please come home and shut him up.”

“Boy what would you guys do without me?” I turned towards Drake “Hey, I guess maybe later we could hang out.”

“Yes I hope so,” he said as Caitlin grabbed my hand and started pulling me home.

“So I guess you kinda like this boy right?” Caitlin said.

“I don’t know him like that,” I said giving a grin.

“So what, his arm was all over you and stuff,” she said dramatically.

“Yeah but that doesn’t mean anything. Plus somehow I felt like I knew him before that moment.”

“Yeah okay,” she smirked.

We quickly walked back to the house hoping we would beat mom and dad home. As we crept into the driveway we saw that their cars weren’t there and ran inside before our lucked changed. When I opened the door Robert flew off the couch “Annabelle I’m sorry,” he said as I pushed passed him and went to the stairs, he continued “Look, I don’t know what came across me I’m so sorry forgive me please,” he sounded desperate, halfway up the stairs I stopped, looked at him, laughed, and continued to my room. When I opened the door I found Johnny asleep on my bed as peaceful as ever. I went into the bathroom changed into my pink pajamas with black dots, laid beside him and fell asleep.

I was woken up by his cry but when I opened my eyes he wasn’t there. I jumped out of my bed and ran downstairs to find him in Drakes arms, again. “Bells help me,” he said as if this boy was really hurting him. Seeing him like that made me so upset I grabbed him aggressively but gingerly.

“What the hell are you doing to him?” I yelled.

“Nothing! Rob told me to watch him and he kept running away so I picked him up and he started crying,” he shouted back.

“Did it ever occur to you that he doesn’t like you?” I gave a chuckle as if to be rude.

“I was hoping somebody liked me.”

Robert walked in to catch the end of our conversation and replied for me “Eww I left for a minute and, eww!”

I started walking up the stairs. “Couldn’t have said it better myself,” I added. I was no longer mad at Robert for what he did and he knew it. I went up stairs into my parent’s bedroom and they were watching television so I put Johnny in between them on the bed.

“You guys are always up. When do you sleep?” I asked and they just laughed. Ever since I was little I noticed it and every time I commented on it they laughed.

I gave up and went to my room. I put in my headphones and started listening to music. I didn’t know the words so I started singing the beat “Uh-Uh Oh Uh Yeah Uh.”. While singing I was back and forth from my bed to my closet. I got out four outfits and was going to ask Caitlin’s approval. As I was going to pick up the clothes I felt someone’s presence. I looked at the door and there stood Drake, I took my headphones out my ear, paused my music on my iPod touch, and rested it on the bed. Silence was there for a couple of seconds before I got annoyed.

“Are you just gonna stand there and look at me or are you gonna leave?” I said. He looked as if my words weren’t fazing him so I continued ‘If my father knew you were here he wouldn’t like it so bye, leave, be gone,” he just kept standing there “Like now!”.

When he finally got out of his daydream or whatever he was in he said “Oh right you want me to leave now okay.”

I picked the clothes up off my bed, I looked up at the door, and said “Still here, why?”

He put his hands his in his pockets and said “Oh right okay I’m just gonna leave now,” he paused “Yeah by the way your dad knows I’m here.”

He was really annoying me so I started to yelled “Yes here as in-in the house-not here as in-in my room-so just leave already.” I wasn’t waiting for him to leave anymore I rushed out the room bumping him so hard. I think I broke my shoulder because when I got across the hall into Caitlin’s room I fell on the floor kicking the door close.

“What the hell’s wrong with me? Oh my, gosh this hurts so badly, oh my, gosh,” I started screaming.

Caitlin pulled the covers from over her head and said “Yes what the hell is wrong with you? People like me tryna sleep.” She glanced at the clock and continued “It’s only twelve thirty wait twelve thirty! Oh no I have to meet the girls at the mall for one o’clock.” I really didn’t care and you could see it on my face, she jumped out of bed, and ran into the bathroom down the hall. I picked up my clothes, rested it on her bed and followed her into the bathroom.

I waited for her to get into the bath tub then started to talk “Katy you don’t even know those girls you just met them yesterday.”

She sighed “Yeah and how will I make new friends if I stay in the house all day?” She was right I really needed to get out of this house; I left the bathroom and went into the shower downstairs which didn’t last very long.

When I went back upstairs Caitlin was gone but she made up her bed placing my clothes neatly on it. I had to decide on an outfit by myself and came to a conclusion that I was going to put on my black skinny jeans with my pink shirt. I went into my room, returned my clothes to my closet and got my black sweater-jacket with my pink flat sneakers with my black bag. When I went down stairs Drake and Robert were sitting on the couch watching basketball. Robert had his car shipped over here and it arrived this morning and I needed a ride to the mall.

I stood in front of Robert and said “Take me to the mall.”

He pushed me gently out of his way and said “Heck no.”

Then I started to beg repetitively “Please Please Please.”

“Okay fine,” he sighed and I thought he gave in but he leaned forward and said “I’ll say it again, no.”

I sucked my teeth and just as I was about to walk out Drake said “Wait, I’ll take you.”

“Oh great.” I whispered to myself.

“Dude what are you doing?” Robert asked.

”You want a girl or not the mall got a lot of chicks,” Drake said. Robert looked like an eight year at a candy store.

“Sweet,” Robert said. My mother came down at the same time to tell us that she was taking Johnny to work with her.

“Okay bye mom,” I said right before I left. I got into the front seat of Drake’s car and Robert got into his car. If I would’ve known Robert was taking his car I would’ve went with him. Drake got in, started his car, and pulled off. I looked into the mirror and saw that Robert was right behind him. As we pulled into the mall a group of boys was standing in a parking spot that said ‘Reserved for Drake Parkes’. He pulled in and Robert pulled right beside him.

As I stepped out of the car and started walking away one of Drake’s friends said “Who’s the cute chick?”

I stopped in my tracks, turned around, and said “Listen here, I am not small, yellow, nor do I have wings so don’t call me a chick. And if that’s your idea of a pick-up line I could hardly imagine why girls aren’t swarming around you.” Everyone began to laugh at him.

He was embarrassed I could tell “Drake get your girl.”

Then I started to laugh “Girl? Ha-”

Drake cut me off not even acknowledging that I had begun speaking “Pizza anyone?” I turned and walked away heading out of the parking lot and directly in front of the mall. As I walked in I noticed Caitlin and he “friends”. I gave her a little wave, she waved back and turned away.

A group of girls approached me and said “Do you want to be a cheerleader?” I turned around to make sure they were talking to me and they were.

“Me? No I’m good,” I said as I walked away leaving no time for words, they all exchanged looks. I went into a store called ‘Ladies Love’ it looked nice. I didn’t want to be picky and choosy but I looked at all the pink stuff first. The things in here weren’t really my style even though the name caught my attention.

One of the employees came to me and he was cute. I immediately started to smile. He was buff like he worked out or something. He looked to be around my age, maybe seventeen, eighteen. His skin looked so light and soft against the baby blue shirt he was wearing. The light reflected off his big green eyes nearly blinding me. “Can I help you with anything?” he asked.

“Yeah actually you can tell me how to get around in this mall,” I replied.

“You’re in luck I’m on my break right now let me check out. I’ll be right back.” I continued to look at the clothes even though I was sure I wasn’t buying anything. I felt a gentle tap on my shoulder where I had bumped Drake. I went into shock but quickly snapped out.

“Oww what the hell that hurts,” I said in a stern voice as I turned around.

“Sorry Little Sis. You okay?” Robert asked. I just nodded my head. There stood Robert, Drake, and his crew. In total there were at least seven of them. I put back the dress I picked.

“Ready?” the cute boy I was talking to said as he came back. Before I had a chance time to reply he looked at Drake and suddenly his voice got louder and tense “How do you know this boy?”

“I could ask you the same question but it’s obvious you talk to every girl that walks through that door,” Drake said.

“That’s my job idiot,” the cute boy yelled back.

The lady from behind the desk looked up and said “Hey cut it out.” I got annoyed because their fight wasn’t mine and I didn’t care to get involved.

“Are you guy’s serious right now? Listen don’t bring me into your problems because I honestly don’t care.” I turned my attention to Robert “See you at home and get your friend.” I walked past them and left the mall. I walked all the way home and it almost took me two hours to find my way. It was three, something going on four when I arrived at home. I went up the stairs and realized I was the only one there. This was the first time in years I had to myself, I laid on my bed wanting to relax and let my body soak up in the sheets.

“Peace and, quiet,” I whispered not thinking this moment could’ve in anyway ended so quickly. The doorbell rang I started hitting the bed “You gotta be kidden’ me,” I yelled as if it was a sign to take the person on my steps back. I stomped down the stairs and opened the door. I was surprise to see it was the boy from the mall. I was shocked and lost for words because for one he knew where I lived and for two he actually showed up.

“Hi I’m Josh,” he said as he held out his hand. I looked out the door to see if he was alone or not and he was.

“I’m sorry do I know you?” my question made his face go from excited to embarrassed.

“Well obviously you do if you were ready to walk around with me in the mall,” he said trying to be smart.

“Exactly in the mall not alone and most definitely I didn’t want you showing up at my house. Then you ruined my shopping day with your unimportant information when you and Drake got into it. Care to explain?”

“For a person that doesn’t care you seem eager to know unimportant information.”

“Ha Ha, funny now start talking.”

“Maybe if you let me inside I will.” He was now wearing a huge smile. Somehow I believed he couldn’t hurt me so I moved aside opening the door wider so he could come in. He walked in looking around as if I was taking him on a tour. He sat on the love seat which was red with a furry material and patted his hand on the seat as if wanting me to sit next to him, but I wasn’t. I sat down on the message chair which was directly in front of his but across the table. The television was to my left on the wall.

I turned on the massage chair and as it started cycle one I got comfortable and said “Okay enlighten me.” He didn’t start right away as if trying to get his story together. By the time cycle two started fifteen minutes later he began.

“It was about three years ago and Drake was dating a girl named Amber. Amber and I were best friends since the fifth grade I always liked her, we belonged together. It was too bad because I never had the guts to tell her. So as time went on Drake and Amber started doing everything together. With Amber being my best friend she invited me all the time and I was always the third wheel. They never caught on they were too busy being happy. They dated for about two year. Amber started joining other activities which soon lead to her becoming the captain of the cheerleading squad.”

I stopped him “Wait she’s about your height maybe a little shorter, light skin, a kind of brunette hair color?” I didn’t know how I knew that but he looked a little taken back.

“Yes how do you know her?” I figured she must have been popular or something, she looked the type.

“She asked me to join a team or something, I said no but that’s not important back to the story”

“You should have said yes, she can make things happen. But anyway, after she became the captain that was the end of our friendship. I should’ve seen it coming. Time went by and I was trying not to let it get to me but I decided she just needs a break.” He gave a long sigh. “I just couldn’t take it anymore. Months later I asked to talk to her alone she didn’t come at first which really hurt me. But, I told her my mom was sick and I really needed her company. Technically it was a lie because my mom wasn’t sick but I really did need her. When she came I was sitting on my porch and I finally told her I loved her. No one said anything for some time but then she said she always loved me too.

“At first I thought she only meant it as a friend until she grabbed my hand and held it close to her heart. Before I knew it we were in my room kissing and one thing lead to another. I’m not sorry for that, I’m sorry for the fact things didn’t work out. Hours later she was crying as if she was drenched in sweat she still loved Drake, and I expected her too but she has to face the facts, she loved me too. All three of us met at a coffee shop about a week later. I couldn’t keep up with the lie she asked me to keep. She told Drake she needed space, that they needed to see different people, and most important she told him she loved me. Drake said nothing. Nothing she said was worth replying too. He got up punched me in my face and I admit I deserved it. He snatched the necklace he gave her off her neck and she didn’t deserve that. He could’ve done anything to me I would’ve got over it. But not her.” Josh held his head down. I stopped the massage chair, got up, and sat next to him.

“I don’t want to take sides but it takes two to tango,” I said as advice.

“Yeah I know but if I would’ve kept my feeling to myself all of this would’ve never happened. Drake was a really good friend and I broke his trust. He treated Amber like a princess but she didn’t care. He provided things no one on this Earth could unless they were like Drake literally.”

“What do you mean?”

“Oh nothing. But after all of that Amber and I started dating it lasted for three months I don’t know how he did it. I just wished he stopped blaming her for what happened and just blamed me. No matter how many times I say sorry he just hates me more.” I leaned in to hug him because I really felt bad. I still didn’t want to be involved but I just met this boy and he just told me the one thing that kills him up until this day. Josh and I talked for about two hours so I knew someone would eventually come home. It was about six forty eight when Drake and Robert walked through the door. I jumped back looking at them speechless once again. I don’t even understand why I was scared I didn’t do anything wrong.

“I should have known,” Drake said as he turned around and started walking out.

“Yeah run like you always do, because you’re too afraid to face the truth,” Josh yelled.

Drake turned back halfway out the door, walked back in and started yelling “Running? Nobody’s running but you because if they ever find out they’ll kill you and I will gladly watch.” I looked at Drake’s and his eyes were red but I was pretty sure his eyes were grayish when I met him.

Josh started laughing he grabbed me and said “Victim number two, now they will most definitely come. Come on save.”

“If you was smart you would know she’s just like us.” Drake moved so fast I didn’t even see him. They started fighting. But I didn’t understand why they were moving so fast and why they were strong all of a sudden.

I ran over to Robert “Robert, what’s going on?” I yelled through all the noise. Robert was shaking not in a seizure way because he was still standing up. I grabbed his hand but he pushed me off. The brand new furniture my mom bought was flying everywhere. Caitlin walked through the door and froze. She had a confused but scared look on her face, she was in shock. Josh had the love seat in his hands about to throw it a Caitlin.

“CAITLIN!” I yelled, tears coming to my eyes thinking for a split second Caitlin could have been gone. I looked at Josh seeing that the love seat was no longer in his hands and he was once again fighting.

I ran over to Caitlin a little relieved and grabbed her arm “Come on Katy SNAP OUT OF IT!’’ I yelled and it took her a minute to catch herself. We went over to Robert who was still shaking and his eyes moving to the movement of Drake and Josh.

“You guys go up stairs now,” Robert said, still not taking his eyes off of them. Caitlin and I started running towards the stairs when Josh ran to me and pushed me against the wall preventing me from getting to the stairs. Why does he wan me? I thought flying through the air. As I was in the air, time slowed down it felt like it was happening for hours. Blood started gushing out of my arm and leg from the mirror that broke. Movement, time, breath everything stopped maybe even life itself and everyone looked at me.

“Annabelle!” Caitlin screamed through her tears, although her voice was faint. Her scream was in sync with the silence long and endless. She started running back down the step. “Caitlin stay!” Robert yelled. Josh jumped over the couch he was coming for me. I started dragging myself to Caitlin. Next thing I knew Robert ran and pushed Josh into the wall and helped me up. I started crying as I pulled the glass out of my hand. Caitlin grabbed me and we started going up the stairs. We went into my room and closed the door.

“I’ll be right back don’t go anywhere,” Caitlin said. She ran down the hall into the bathroom and got damp paper towel. She ran back, closed the door and started cleaning the blood and pulling the glass out of my hand. We both kept wiping the tears endlessly from our faces. My eyes started closing.

Caitlin looked up, she started hitting my face gingerly “No, no, no, this can’t be happening. Annabelle stay with me please.’’ She was crying and screaming. She ran out of the room and to the bottom of the steps to get help. She saw that no one was there so she ran back up the stairs and tried to wake me up once more. But I was gone.

‘’Please Anna, please don’t go. Don’t leave me,” She yelled while hugging me. 

                                                                                  -Karen Herbert

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