Shania Waters is a 17-year-old senior, trying to make it through her last year of high school without falling apart due to the constant fighting at home, her boyfriend of two years leaving her, and feeling like she has no one to talk to. But when a tragedy strikes in her own home, she has to help figure out what happened to save her loved ones from a sentence worse than death.
As part of our ongoing effort to publish student’s fiction and works of literature, we bring you “Foley Speaks.” This is chapter one of Kaitlyn Booker’s series on fictional character, Shania Waters.
I lay there in bed, listening to my music and thinking about life. My parents screams somehow managed to be heard over my blaring stereo, so I turned it up even louder, to the point where it made the mirror on my wall shake.
I was so tired of them fighting. They fought about everything and yet nothing, from why the dishes weren’t done to who’s picking my little sister up from school. I wish they would just get a divorce already instead of dragging it out. We all knew it was coming. I’m to the point where that sounds easier to hear than this non-stop fighting.
My stomach growled, reminding me that I forgot to eat dinner. I debated whether or not it was worth to get up and go in there as my parents fought, but when my stomach growled again, I figured I had no choice.
I turned my music off on the way out the door, and my parent’s took that as their cue to shut up. Smart.
I was about to walk into the kitchen just as my father storms out with his keys in hand and leaves. The door slams so hard behind him, I flinched and felt the familiar burning in my eyes. I’d gotten used to it now. It was getting easier to ignore.
Apparently, my mom couldn’t ignore it because when I walked in, she was leaning over the sink sobbing. I thought about comforting her, but she didn’t deserve it. She caused this mess. It was her lies that broke this family. While dad was at work and my three brothers, sister, and I were at school, she was sneaking other men over that definitely were not my father.
I silently walk to the refrigerator and get out the ham, cheese, and mayonnaise to make a sandwich.
“What are you doing?” Mom asks behind me.
“Eating. Is that a problem?” I muttered.
“I was going to make dinner though.”
I looked over at the clock and saw it was already 9 o’clock at night.
“I’ll pass. All I want is a sandwich.”
I start to grab the bread and my mother grabs my wrist, restraining me.
“Shania Elizabeth Waters,” she said through clenched teeth, “I said I am making dinner.”
I snatch my arm away and look at her incredulously. She looked angry. Very angry. It’s the look she had got when my older brother, Dustin, told her he had gotten his high school girlfriend knocked up his junior year.
“What is wrong with you! It’s not that big of a deal!” I said with my voice edging on hysteria. My mother never looked at me like that. And she sure as heck never grabbed me.
“I’m tired of people not listening to me!” My mother screamed. Just with those few words my mom lost her anger and broke down into tears.
Ever since all of this started, I never felt sorry for my mother. I always thought she deserved whatever happened and all the things my father had to say to her. But at that moment, I looked at her and the woman I used to look up to was gone. There was just a heartbroken woman on the floor in front of me, and I knew if I let this break me away from mom, she would have no one. Dad hated her, my two older brothers refused to talk to her, and my little brother and sister were too young to really know what was happening.
I took my mom into my arms and held her while she cried. For the first time in a long time, I let the tears fall down my own face.
Later that night, I was washing dishes and just thinking about where this all went wrong. Maybe it was my fault… I was the one that came home from school early because of a cold. I had tried calling my mom to get her to tell them I could check out and drive home, but she didn’t answer. So I called dad. When I got home, my mom wasn’t in the living room or kitchen like I thought she would be. Then I heard something coming from her bedroom. I thought she was in trouble, which is why I didn’t think about calling out. I ran upstairs and through the door.
To find my mother doing what broke this once happy family up.
The ding of my phone is what pulled me out of my thoughts. I quickly grabbed it, hoping it was the text I had been waiting for all night.
I squealed louder than I meant to when I saw the contact that had texted me; It said “Him:)<3”
And it said:
“Meet me outside”
Look out for Chapter 2 of Refusing to Break.