A/N: Thanks fire for being such a great reader, you have always been one of my biggest supporters when it comes to my writing I don't know what I would have done without you.

I laid on the floor my tongue sticking out of my mouth

pretending to be dead. My brother lay next to me he was dead

also. As you can see we would both do just about anything to

hear my sister's innocent joy filled laugh. My mother opened

the door.


I sat up abruptly and got to my feet.


"Can you come here a minute?"

I nodded and walked to her.

She led me out of Brian's room and into the living room.

"I need to go shopping for some of Aleera's school supplies and

some food. I'll be gone a while can you watch Brian and


She made it sound like I had a option. Which I knew very well

I didn't. I suppose that's the way it's supposed to be.

I simply nodded. No point in doing more unless I was asking

myself to say something that would piss her off. She beamed

at me "great. I'll be home my 5 or 6." I nodded again. And I

just stood there as I listen to her bustle around getting her

keys. I stood there tell I heard her drive down the street. I

stood there longer. I finally felt my knees go weak and I

sinked to the floor. No longer aware of what was around numb

and in a kind of reverie. I didn't cry or scream or do anything

for that matter I just sat there.

Brian came out and looked at me.

"Alex come on get up."

I didn't blink.

"Please." I could hear him but it was a kind of echoing in my

head more like a memory from years ago then a right now

thing. I didn't know what was wrong with me I don't think I

even cared. I sat longer. I heard Katie talking to me. "Come

on Alex get up." I didn't move even after I was alone again I

wasn't really capable.

I heard the front door open miles away. I felt a cool hand on my cheek.

"Xandra. Wake up come here talk to me, it's Joey."

I closed my eyes, he didn't know what he was asking here I

could be safe from the pain. "Alex if not for me wake up for


I opened my eyes. And looked at him.

"You back?" he asked softly.

I nodded slowly then said "Yes I'm back."


He hugged me tightly then he seemed to realize what he was

doing and he moved away quickly. I stood on my shaky legs

and I felt a arm support me it was Joey.

He lead me to the kitchen table and had me sit down.

He started bustling around.


I looked up it was Aleera.

"hey baby"I smiled sadly.

She climbed into my lap and hugged me.

"Are you ok." She asked me sincerely.

I couldn't help but smile "Ya I'm ok are you?"

She nodded and graced me with a stunning grin.

I hugged her frieclely.

"I love you."

Her sky blue eyes met my chameleon eyes.

And she said "I love you too."

My heart filled and overflowed with love for this little girl.

I hugged her and tears softly wet my cheeks.



"Never leave me."

"I won't."


"I promise."

She snuggled against me satisfied.