• Jade looked out her window as little droplets of rain sporadically hit the glass. Walking over to the sill, she looked down at the street. The rain had caused everything to become wet. The scenery made her feel more depressed than she already was. Her life had changed in a blink of an eye. She had no friends; no feeling of purpose, and the only person that could help her, wasn't there.

    Packing her things and moving away from all she knew, all she loved, took strength she no longer possessed. The thought of living in California always excited her, but under the circumstances, she wasn’t comforted by the fact she had to live with a new family in an unfamiliar place. The social worker told her she was lucky to have a family that would bring her into their home, but at what cost?

    Her parents were gone, her brother was with some other family, and she was all alone. It was too much for her. Jade had only arrived an hour ago and with the weather changing as it had, brought nothing but more anger and sadness. She hated her life! She wished she’d never come to live with these people.

    As she stared out the bay window someone walking in the drizzle caught her eye. From the way he walked, Jade knew it was male. He was tall and the rain matted his brown hair. The clothes he wore clung to him, dripping with water. His short sleeves showed his tan skin that, in any other place would have looked weird but somehow, in the context of it all, fit.

    Sighing, she closed her eyes. She wished she were like him, caught up by the rain. Opening her eyes again, the person disappeared, never to witness him again. She sighed once more and proceeded to reface her new hell, sliding down the window, slumping in the window seat. All Jade wanted was her life back.

    After a moment, Jade walked to her laptop that she earlier placed on her bed. Opening the browser, she logged into her e-mail to write her brother. Normally he would cheer her up, no matter how hard the times where. Finishing the last depressing sentence on the screen, she hit the send button and shut off the computer. Lying on her new bed, she awaited tomorrow, falling asleep with a stream of fresh new tears cascading down her face. Tomorrow would be the start of her new life.


    Voices and clanking of silverware on plates echoed from the kitchen as Jade made her way down the stairs. Swinging the worn bag off her shoulder and onto the hardwood floor, she stepped into the kitchen. As she did so, all eyes darted to her. At the table, three of the younger children sat eating, and two fellow teens were leaning against the counter. At the stove, back toward the entrance of the kitchen, her foster mother stood preparing food.

    As the volume of sound in the room decreased, Barbra turned around, a motherly grin spreading over her face as she realized what caused the change. Setting the spatula down, she wiped her hands on her apron. Jade moved uncomfortably where she stood. The two teens glanced at each other slightly-it was obvious they were just talking about her. Not noticing, Barbra walked over to Jade and wrapped an arm around her.

    “Good morning Jade.” She half hugged. “I suppose introductions are in order, since you came so late last night.” Barbra smiled, looking at her other foster children.

    In truth, she didn’t come too late the day before. When she first entered her new home, she saw the little ones in the living room watching TV with Barbra’s husband, and Barbra saying something about how dinner was going to be ready in about an hour. The clock that hung over the opening to the kitchen read 5:30pm and Jade could hear music playing from one of the rooms upstairs. It was the fact that Jade hadn’t come down for dinner in which Barbra was referring. Just the thought of missed food, and the new aroma from the stove, made Jade’s stomach scream with hunger pains.

    “This here is my son Bobby,” She said pointing to one of the teens standing at the counter who closely resembled Barbra. Bobby gave a classic guy-nod. “And that next to him is his girlfriend Fern.” Fern smiled slightly, shaking her hand in a small wave.

    “Here is Elsie,” Elsie happily bounced as she heard her name called, her small tight curly ringlets bouncing with her in the high chair she sat in. “Mark,” A boy looking around 7, dropped his spoon into his cereal bowl as he swallowed what he had in his mouth. “Hello.” He said.

    “Lastly, this is Miracle. Mark's twin sister.” Barbra finished. Miracle grabbed the doll she had off the table and gave it a squeeze, looking at Jade as if she was going to take it from her.

    Barbra smiled at Jade again. “Would you like some breakfast then?” She asked, ushering Jade to sit at the table. Barbra resumed her spot at the stove to plate up more food.

    Obliging, Jade sat, eyes still on her by Miracle. Mark resumed his cereal, and Elsie hit her spoon against the tray of her high chair. Jade fidgeted in the chair. Fern leaned over closer to Bobby, whispering something in his ear, causing Bobby to smirk. It was unnerving with Bobby and Fern talking in hushed voices, making Jade feel self-conscious.

    "Barb, I’m going to school." Jade suddenly said, as Barbra placed a plate in front of her.

    “Are you sure, you haven’t had anything to eat yet.” Barbra replied, concerned.

    “Yeah, I’ll be fine.” Jade said, picking up her bag from the floor. “I’ll eat at school.” She said reassuringly, walking to the door and waving back at Barbra.

    Before heading out the door, Jade could have sworn she heard Fern and Bobby laughing at her.