Trapped, Chapter 1

I am not a shy person. I never have been. But with all that has been happening to me in these last few hours, I think I have a right to be a little nervous and yes, even a little shy.
This will be my first night in boarding school. It is 4:55 pm and at 5:05 I will meet the people that I am going to live with for the next two years.
Miss Gregory gave me a smile that was obviously fake. “The girls should be here any minute now! They are just finishing up in their work stations”
I look at her blankly for a second and then ask, “What is a work section?”
“Oh, you will see soon enough,” she said almost ominously.
I resisted the urge to take a step away from her and look around the room instead. I realize that it has four other beds besides mine. I am a little nervous because I have never shared a room with anyone before because I was an only child.
Suddenly the door opened and a tall girl and a small girl walked into the room. The tall girl had her hand on the small girls shoulder. They both stopped in the doorway and stared at me. The small girl then stared at the floor obviously shy.
“Girls,” Miss Gregory began “This is Piper and I expect you to be kind to her. Her mother just died so she is a little upset.”
I stared at her in shock. My mother hadn’t died!
I opened my mouth to protest but I was cut off by the tall girl. “Hi I’m Jade!” She grabbed the small girl’s hand and pulled her over to me. The tall girl, Jade, hugged me which took me off guard making me forget my protests. “This is Brooke,” Jade informed me, gesturing to the small child.
Miss Gregory stepped up closer to Jade and looked her in the eye. “Brooke can speak for herself. Right Brooke?” She asked turning towards Brooke.
Brooke looked at Jade and then at the floor again.
Angry, Miss Gregory grabbed Brooke’s hair and yanked it up causing the girl to yelp and stand on her toes. “Right Brooke?” Miss Gregory repeated pulling harder on Brooke’s hair. “Yes ma’am!” She said loudly, tears running down her face.
Miss Gregory realized Brooke’s hair and Brooke rubbed her head and leaned on Jade. Miss Gregory leaned towards Jade and whispered something in her ear. Jade’s face remained expressionless as she nodded.
Miss Gregory turned back towards me and put that fake smile back on her face again. “If you have any questions, you can talk to Mrs. Hales. She is the principal of this school. And she is also what this school is named after. Mrs. Hales Boarding School For Girls.”
“But I thought you said this school was government run,” I said.
“Yes but Mrs. Hales works for the government and she very kindly offered to be in charge of this school. You see, this school doesn’t cost anything to go to, but we don’t except just anybody. It is almost like an orphanage except we don’t put you up for adoption, we make you in to strong working young woman.”
“But I am not an orphan!” I say quickly, “My father is in the war and in two years when his term is over, he is going to come get me!”
“Yes but in the mean time, you will go here. Not everybody here is a complete orphan. Several girls parents are here because one or both of their parents are fighting in the war. But some are orphans because their parents died or because they were not wanted any more.” She looked at Brooke and said, “Brooke’s parents decided having a child meant they couldn’t do some of the the things they wanted any more so they didn’t want her. She was to big of a burden to them. They left her here.”
Brooke, who had just stopped crying, buried her face in Jade and began crying again.
Miss Gregory pivoted and walked to the door. “Jade will tell you everything you need to know. The other girls will be here soon.” She opened the door and left, slamming it shut behind her.
I turned to Jade and Brooke and watched the little girl sob. I couldn’t believe that Miss Gregory could be so cruel as to pull her hair and to say that her parents didn’t love her anymore.
Jade gave me a half smile. I gave her a half smile back. I stared at Brooke again and that was when I noticed bruises on her cheek. I saw that she also had some bruises on her arm and a big awful looking bruise on her leg.
“What happened to her?” I asked worried.
Jade gave me a confused look. I pointed at Brooke’s arm and Jade replied to me, “The cook beat her because she dropped a dish and it broke.”
I stared at her in shock. “That is abuse!” I exclaimed.
Jade nodded her head. “Yeah, but that’s normal here.”
I stared at her in disbelief.
She turned away from me and began to talk softly to Brooke. “It’s okay, it’s okay. Shh, it’s okay now Brookie, it’s alright.”
So. This was my life for the next two years. Lovely.


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