Chapter 1

~ ~ ~

"Find myself?" Maria snorted. "I already have. I'm right here."

"I'm serious. You need to do some soul-searching. Find out who you really are," her therapist, Dr. Allen, told her, placing a hand on the teen's shoulder.

Maria shrugged the hand away. "Don't touch me. You know what my friend calls you guys? The-rape-ists." She pronounced clearly.

Dr. Allen sighed. "You are a difficult person, Maria. Spoiled and arrogant, with waaay too much time and confidence on your hands."

"Hey, I didn't want to come here in the first place. It was my parents' idea. I don't think I need a therapist. I think I am perfectly fine." She paused, listening. "And now, if you'll excuse me, I think our session is over and Brittany is here to pick me up." She picked up her notebook and bag and flounced out the door angrily.

Dr. Allen stared after her thoughtfully. 'She's a good person, she really is. Just..easily swayed by the darkness..and arrogant..and annoying..and...' He sighed. 'She does need to find herself..she doesn't know who she really is or what she's meant to do in this life. As her therapist, it's my job to help her, right?' But Maria was proud and confident. She refused help from everyone. 'I guess it's just something she'll have to figure out on her own..'

~ ~ ~

Brittany smiled at her friend as she approached the midnight blue convertible. "Have a nice session?"

Maria barely spared her a glance as she got inside and shut the door. "Yes, and I recently discovered a cure for cancer."

Brittany rolled her eyes good-naturedly. She was used to Maria's rants and tirades, having picked her up from every session ever since she got a drivers' license. Maria had been very grateful. She liked having her best friend drive instead of a family member, all of which she was currently mad at, excluding her brother.

"Well, anyway, you wanna go get something to eat?" Brittany offered. "You look like you could use something." She grinned.

"Hey! What's *that* supposed to mean!?" Maria squeaked indignantly.

"I'm only kidding!" Brittany reassured her.

"That's what you always say!" Maria complained teasingly. "It's always something! Last time it was 'you look like you got shorter!'"

"Well, you did!"

Maria stuck her tongue out. "Nyah. I'm not hungry."

"Liar. We're getting something whether you like it or not." Brittany said as she turned into Wendy's. "I know you love those chicken sandwiches."

Maria wrinkled her nose. "I don't have any money." She said stubbornly.

"I'll pay."

"There's no way outta this, is there?"


Maria sighed. "That's alright, I can pay. I've got cash."

Brittany grinned. "I know. But I'm paying anyway."

"Oh, you're paying for me? Are we on a date?" Maria fluttered her eyelashes teasingly.

"In your dreams, maybe."

"Sigh. And only there," she joked. They laughed.

Brittany led her friend inside. After they ordered, they went to sit at a table in the corner.

"So, really. Tell me about today's session."

"Mmmm," Maria closed her eyes. "It was as boring as ever. Dr. Allen says I need to 'find myself.' He says I don't know who I am, what I'm supposed to do, if I'm evil, blah blah blah."

"If you're evil?" Brittany raised her eyebrows.

Maria shrugged. "Well, you gotta admit, I do act pretty cruel and heartless sometimes."

"All the time."

"You know it."

They laughed and ate in silence for a while.

"So, wanna go to a movie later?" Brittany asked a little later.

"Sure. I'll have to ask the parental units, though. I'm not eighteen, yet." She rolled her eyes.

"Of course," Brittany chuckled, sensing another rant coming on.


"It's not like they can control my life, ya know!?" Maria burst out in rage. "I have free will! I can't be chained down and bent to someone else's will! And I won't! I am my own person! And someday, everyone will be sorry they *ever* heard the name Maria Selina Bennett!"

Brittany nodded silently. This was why Maria had therapy - she had a hard time with anger. It was the only emotion she knew how to express, and she expressed it badly, always needing to fight. She had gotten better once she had harnessed her power and started training, though. Now all they had to work on was toning down her supreme arrogance and confidence.

But now Maria seemed to be finished; she sat back, looking satisfied.

And the other people in the restaurant sat back in fear.

Brittany and Maria looked around and laughed. People were timid.

"We better get going. I have to get home," Maria said.

Brittany nodded. "Alright." They picked up their trash and left.

~ ~ ~

Maria walked into her house, slamming the door behind her.

"Hi, honey," her mom said from the kitchen.


"Whatcha doing?"

" and Brittany are going to a movie."

Mrs. Bennett shrugged. "Well, I suppose. If it's okay with your father. Did you train today?"

"Of course. I train everyday. Right before I went to Dr. Allen's. We were free-sparring. The competition is coming up, you know." Maria participated in fighting tournaments. It thrilled her, and gave her a reason to fight.

"Sure, sweetie. I'll see you later, then."

~ ~ ~

" arm hurts, now!" Brittany complained. "You almost tore it off again!"

"Well, you shoulda known! I do it every time we go to a scary movie!"

"Yeah, and always to me. I was even on your other side, the one you don't instinctively lunge to, and you *still* grabbed my arm!"

"If you haven't noticed, no matter what side you're on, I always lunge to you."

"Yeah. Lucky everyone else. They don't know the intense pain of your nails! Or should I say claws!" she laughed.

It had been a great night. Maria, Brittany, Gabrielle, Drama, and Steph had all went to see the new scary movie. Now they were all terrified, and sure to have nightmares. Nevermind the fact that they were all seventeen-years- old. Now Brittany and Maria were driving to Brittany's.

"Oooh, I can't get that one part outta my head, where the guy stabs the other guy and-"

"Ew, don't remind me! That was so sick!"

"Yeah, and I-" Maria paused, looking at the road. "Brittany, watch out!" she screeched, lunging for the wheel.

A semi was on the wrong lane, heading straight for them. Maria and Brittany maneuvered the wheel as best as they could, but it was no use. The semi driver was either drunk or dead.

The last thing either of the girls could remember was a flash of light and the sickening crunch of the impact. Then all was black.

~ ~ ~

a/n: was an impulse story. I'm not seventeen yet...dammit. And I'm not in therapy..yet. Hahahahahaha. I think it has some could be an okay story. We'll see where it goes...if you have questions or comments, review or email me (sock_monkey77 ). I always reply to emails. Caio!