EDIT: Sorry about some of the mistakes. Mari was a "sketch" of the character I wanted but I changed my mind. I had went through and edited her name out. I guess I forget some (I caught the one "Mari" if there's another one in there, ignore it). Sorry! And also, I don't know why I have it set to M. I'll have to change that. Sorry!

Finish Me Off

"I'm going where?!" I shouted at my richly dressed stepmother.

My stepmother calmly looked at me and pressed a perfectly manicured fingertip to her temple. She leaned against the back of her chair, sighing deeply. She looked so delicate, sitting there next to my father. Her brown hair was pulled back into a demure bun that rested at the nape of her neck. The mauve jacket she wore with white trousers set off her lightly tanned skin and her sage green eyes.

The eyes that were currently glaring at me.

It's not like I could help it. Who wouldn't be disbelieving if they just learned their parents were sending them off to a finishing school in Ireland?

"Your father and I are sending you to The King's Hospital in Dublin, Ireland. Really, Scarlett, we thought you would've understood by now." My stepmother said with a touch of exasperation. My father sat next to her, silently. He hasn't said anything since they called me in here. Nothing new there.

Okay, seriously. Who names a school like that "The King's Hospital?" Huh?

Who does that?

"But why?" I said, pulling at my wavy shoulder length auburn hair. This was so frustrating. They gave me no warning whatsoever. They just dropped this bomb in my lap. I mean I'm twenty.

"Scarlett, please, don't be difficult," My father said, lifting his head to stare at me with solemn brown eyes, "We are doing this because we feel as though it is the best for you. You've heard our terms."

Their terms? Oh, that's right. The ones that say, I won't get my inheritance unless I go to this finishing school. Okay, I wasn't that bad of a daughter. I know that sometimes they don't like me around, but I don't want to leave my home.

My "home" just so happened to be one of largest in my town. My family one of the richest in the city. My father's business had started out a small, unknown computer software company and had grown into one of the largest in the state. I was grateful for what I had, don't get me wrong, but it was tiresome. I was planning on leaving the nest soon anyways. I was paying my own rent; I had a job…why did I have to learn how to be a lady?

"Scarlett Holt!" I heard my stepmother say impatiently.

"What!" I practically shouted at her.

"Not your loud voice, dear," My father pointed out to me.

My loud voice…I hated that phrase with a passion. I'll use my loud voice whenever I want!

"I just so happen to like my loud voice, Dad," I said with a self-righteous nod. He rolled his eyes and turned to my stepmother.

"Diane, tell her the rest of the news."

My mother nodded and continued on, "You'll be leaving us tomorrow. So, I suggest you start packing your belongings."

"Tomorrow? One day?!" I shouted, "You couldn't have given me at least a week?"

"Scarlett …your loud voice isn't needed here. We need you to be understanding and accept it. Now, please, go pack." My father stated to me, standing up. He helped my stepmother to her feet as they looked at me, expectantly.

What were they expecting me to do? I looked at them strangely as I sat in my relaxed position on the settee.



I hate packing. I really, really do. It takes up so much time. I always forget something too. Its just fate.

I nodded and muttered a "fine." I turned swiftly on my heels and walked down an empty hallway, filled with mirrors. I hated this hallway…why did it have to lead to my room? My parents called it: The Hall of Mirrors.

Real creative, huh?

I turned my head as I inevitably caught my reflection. I was okay looking, I guess. My hair had a slight curl to it and waved around my shoulders. I've never dyed my hair…so its natural color was a deep auburn. My eyes were the color of moss with specks of gold in them and were fringed with dark, thick lashes. My lips were a pinkish red color and were full and almost always were laughing, showing off my white, straight teeth. I was in shape, weighing hundred and eighteen pounds at my five feet five inches height.

I was wearing a light pink fitted skirt that came down to my knees with a bright green tank top. My tank top had blue sparkles that fluttered across the shirt doing weird spiral things. I was wearing white kitten heels to go with my white dangling earrings. The make-up I wore was necessary. I felt without make-up I looked like crap. I didn't load on the make-up, but I had a respectable amount on. I had applied pink eye shadow on that was lined with light brown eyeliner and a light coat of black mascara. My lips had a glossy shine to them and my cheeks were a light rosy color. I've always wanted to go make up-commando, but I don't have enough courage for that. I sighed at my reflection and continued down the hallway.

Some people would call me a prep…that label I detested. I was a normal gal, in my opinion. So what if I could afford nice clothing, but it's not like I flaunt it around. I am nice to everybody and I am in no way snotty. I've only had a few boyfriends, much to my disappointment. I wasn't all that popular with the guys.

A.K.A: I wasn't giving out.

Turning the knob on my white door, I entered my large room. My room was covered pictures of my friends and I. My bed was set in the middle of the room, covered with pillows. I always loved my bed. It was so comfortable. The covers were a dark blue with a white embroider edge on it. The pillows were all different colors, mostly light shades of blues. My pictured covered walls were a lime green with specks of pink and had one large window, letting light in. I had a desk by the window and some bookshelves set in random places. The closet was a walk-in and was beside my bed. Easy access, I had always thought. A black door closed off the bathroom from my bedroom.

I propelled myself onto my bed, diving under all the soft, plush pillows, kicking off my shoes. Could life get any worse? Not only were my family sending me to a different country, they were sending me to a place where I knew no one. How lonely. I was pondering over this while my phone rang, beside my bed. I surged upwards, fighting my way out of the pillows. I jerked the azure colored phone out of its cradle on the third ring.

"Greetings from the Scarlett Holt Corporation. How may I help you?" I said pleasantly into the phone.

Okay, I'm weird like that.

"Letty, be normal for once, please." I heard my friend, Ellie, from the phone.

"El, I don't know what you're talking about. I'm always normal," I said smartly into the phone.

"Whatever. So, what's up?" She asked me as I turned flopped myself onto my back, sinking into the pillows.

"Oh my God, you will not believe this!" I shouted into the phone.

"What, what? Tell me!"

"My parents are shipping me off to Ireland!"

"WHAT!? How could they! Of all the despicable things to do! Why? When? How? " Ellie shouted as I held the phone away from my ear as she ranted.

This is what I loved about Ellie; she always supported me in everything that happened to me. I met her when I was seventeen-going-on-eighteen, two years ago. She had been in some of my classes and we started just behind "acquaintances" and somewhere down the road we became best of friends. She had been there for me whenever Brian broke my pathetic heart.

"I know, I know! They just dropped the bomb on me today! I was working in my room, by working I mean drawing, and my dad came in and said he wanted to talk to me. So, you know, being the great daughter that I am, I went with him and they just threw the news at me. He said that I wouldn't get my inheritance, if I didn't go to this upscale place where they make girls into ladies," I said with a huff.

My inheritance that I'd get whenever I turn twenty-one. I was so close. One more year. I don't need the money that I would come into too, but my father has been talking about it since I could understand English. Which has been about for eighteen years. So, it's a big deal in his book.

I heard her sniffle into the phone, "But, Letty, I'll never see you again."

My heart dropped. That's right. I would never see Ellie again. I would only see her on the holidays and other breaks. Why didn't I think of this before?

"You're right. I'm leaving tomorrow, Ellie. Why don't you come over and," I sniffed, "help me pack."

"Alright, I'll be over in a jiffy." I heard her say sadly as the phone clicked off. I sighed and slapped the phone back onto its receiver.

I rubbed my face, smearing my make up, and sat up in my bed. Standing up, I walked into my closet and tugged out my bags that I would pack all my stuff in. I dragged them in front of my bed and sat down on the settee by the window, waiting for Ellie.

I couldn't believe this was happening. I was leaving the life, as I know it. I would never have guessed my parents would do this to me. I know that sometimes it seems that I hinder them, but I never thought they would ship me off. It's not like I asked for their attention often. I was just there in their lives. I knew that they had to love me. My father was affectionate towards me, but work took up most of his time. My stepmother was always going around doing who knows what. The house was pretty much always empty, except for the housekeepers and such.

My thoughts were interrupted by the slam of my door opening. Ellie burst through the door with a sorrowful look on her face. I smiled sadly at her. Ellie always looked beautiful. She had long silvery blond hair that lay against her shoulder blades and eyes of an angel. Her clothing was always casual and always matching. She dropped her violet purse on the floor and sat beside me on the settee, staring out the window.

"God, Letty, I can't believe this," She whispered in her light, soft voice. I heaved a shaky sigh. I would not cry.

"I know, me either." I said and leaned over, hugging her. She hugged me back and patted my back a few times.

"It'll turn out alright, Letty. We'll talk on the phone, write, email, do whatever so we can keep in touch. I mean, it's only a year."

I drew back from the hug and nodded, "Yeah. I know we will." I stood up and looked around my room, pitifully. Time to start packing.

"I guess I should, uh, start packing now." I said.

She nodded and stood up, starting toward one dresser, "I'll do this one. You do your closet."

Before we started cleaning she spoke up, "Oh. I have some good news, despite all of this horrible stuff." Ellie sounded cheerful and I looked over to her, taking in her bright eyes and smile.

"What?" I asked, stopping half way to the dresser. I turned to face her, wondering what had caused her sudden change in disposition.

"Donovan...asked me to marry him!" She all but yelled. Joy blossomed in my heart for her and squealed and ran over to her, jumping on her.

"Ellie! Oh my God! He did?! How? When? Where's the ring?!" I continued on, hugging her and Ellie laughed.

Ellie grinned, "Well...last night we were at the park..."

I clapped a hand to my mouth, "No way. Ohmigod, that's adorable. That's where you guys hung out as kids right? And then that's when in high school, you guys became 'exclusive'?"

"The one and only. Anywayyyy, we were at the swings," at this point, Ellie's voice became dreamy, "and he was pushing my swing and he just stopped. He turned and while I was on the swing, knelt before me and basically declared his love - I already knew that, of course - and showed me the ring." Ellie held out her left hand and I gasped at the ring. It was beauitful. The ring was a white gold band and had a 1/2 carot solitare diamond, princess cut. Less was definitely more with this ring. Sure, Donovan could have bought some gem accents beside the diamond, but the ring was just so simple and so...gorgeous.

"It's so beautiful! I can't believe I didn't notice it before." I took Ellie's hand and held it by my eyes, inspecting it. It wasn't too big or fake.

"I know. I love him so much." I grinned up at Ellie. She was head over heels.

"So when's the date?" I asked, straightening and dropping her hand.

"Err..we don't know yet," Ellie asked, "but you are so my maid of honor."

"Score!" I shouted with an air punch.

"Okay, let's get working." The air suddenly turned solemn again and I hoped I would even be home for Ellie and Donovan's wedding. I sighed and nodded, getting to work.

It took us two long hours. We talked occasionally about thewedding and Donovan. We strayed away from the real subject of me going away, the end, I had three suitcases of clothes and other boxes filled with CDs, sketch books, books and other items that had no category.

We both were lying on my queen size bed and staring up at the ceiling, not really saying anything. Tonight I would have to call all my other friends and tell them the news.

"Wow, that took forever,"Ellie said, breaking the compatible silence.

"You're right. It did. And that is why I hate packing." I turned on my side, staring at my clock. 7:34 PM. Time did fly by. I didn't want Ellie to leave. I didn't want to have to say good-bye.

"Oh, Letty, what are we going to do…?"Ellie said on a sigh. What were we going to do? I was leaving for Ireland tomorrow and I wouldn't see her again for a few months. I rubbed my temples with my fingertips.

"I have no idea. I don't want to go, El. I don't…"

"Oh, I know, hun. But you'll meet new people…some hot guys," She said, waggling her eyebrows at me.

I laughed and threw a blue pillow at her, "Oh yeah…those sex-crazed males."

Ellie rolled her eyes and tossed the pillow back at me, "Oh, c'mon, they aren't all "sex-crazed." There actually are some nice guys out there, Letty. Try to make friends. Don't close yourself off to everyone." She just says that because she has the perfect boyfriend. Wait, make that...fiancé! But, nooo, I'm not jealous…a tad envious…but I don't have to worry; I'm done with guys and their drama. Ever since Brian... - no, don't think about him, Scarlett.

"I will, El. Don't worry. I'll be nice and friendly to everyone," I said with a cheesy grin placed on my face. Ellie laughed and shoved my shoulder.

"I'm serious, Letty. Don't close everyone off." I nodded and the fake smile slid off my face.

"I won't. I'll try to meet new people." I vowed, placing my right handover my heart.

Ellie nodded, satisfied with my answer. She rolled off my bed, hitting the soft green-carpeted floor with her bare feet.

"I guess…I'll be going then," She said, hanging her head low.

I jumped off my bed and nodded, "I guess so."

Ellie wiped away a tear and I laughed goodheartedly, "It'll be okay, cher. I'm not dying." She laughed and I hugged her.

She drew back and I gave her a watery smile, "I'll call you and give you my new number."

She nodded and smiled back at me, "I'll be seeing you, 'kay?"

"You betcha. Love ya," I told her, grinning at her.

"Love you, doll," She said. I hugged her one last time and she picked up her purse walked out of my door.

I sighed and sat back down on my bed. Yesterday seemed like a distant memory compared to today. Yesterday, I would've never believed such a thing could've happened. Now, I'm disbelieving that this time tomorrow, I'll be in a foreign country. I'll be the foreigner.

Time past slowly as I got ready for bed. I called some other friends, telling them the news, all of which were very shocked as Ellie was. After I was done with that, I took my shower and got dressed in my pajamas. I turned and looked at my clock. 10:06 PM. I should go to bed now. My flight was at six AM. And I am definitely not a morning person…

I shook my head and crawled into my bed, thoughts swirling around in my mind. Well, I better make the best of my situation. I'm going to make new friends, meet some hot guys and get good grades. I'm going to try to at least. I let the dark oblivion of sleep cloud my mind and pull me back.

This was my chance to start over.

A new beginning.

A/N: Okay, so how did you all like this first chapter? Worth continuing? We'll probably write some more chapters and see what the response is. Um…so yeah, R&R. Sorry about those mistakes!

Catee Sorella

Chapter Two: A Whole New World