Not My Territory- Chapter 1

Meet Adira.

I look at the alarm clock next to my bed and see that it's 2:24 AM. I pretend as though I don't hear him, knowing the consequence of such an act but ignoring the punishments till later. I walk to my bathroom to wash my face and snap myself out of the dazed confusion Emerson's dreams always leave me in. They've been happening for weeks now, only once or twice at first, but now it was constant every night I'd see his face, every night I'd swoon and every night I'd wake up to the nightmare that is my father.

I don't even know who that guy is, if he even exists. But whatever it was I loved the fact that it gave a momentary escape, where I wasn't being yelled at, or hit. Just being me.

I analyze my body in the mirror now and do a mental check up of my injuries. Looks like the bruising on my shoulder from two nights ago is healing much quicker than I thought and the scratches on my ankles from last week are almost invisible.

As my eyes travel up my body in the mirror they see themselves in their dark brown glory. I stare at myself and a sense of disgust fills the very core of my bones. From the cocoa brown of my skin and the frizziness of my curly afro down to the curves and twists that my body makes, it all disgusted me.

But why? Well it was the reason I'd received all these injuries from my father. My body was a constant reminder of my mother, who'd disappeared when I was 4. I honestly don't blame her, I'm just happy she was smart enough to leave when she had a chance. No one wants a drugged up alcoholic abusive husband , and definitely not the child that would remind her of him. That's why I don't hate my mother, because if put in her shoes I'd have left too.

So why haven't I left this hell hole yet? That's a good question. I am 18, I'm a legal adult who is able to vote and drive her way out of this town and this life. But where would I go? And what would I do? I mean I do have some musical skil-

"What the hell are you doing locked up in this goddamn room?!" His voice yells from outside my door.

I pretend as though I'm sleeping and my dog Chester rushes over to my side. He's a grown Samoyed and basically my best friend. He'd always defend me whenever my father acted like this but I knew my dad wouldn't hesitate to kill him so I always warn him to back off, my dad wouldn't go that far with me. I hope so at least.

I step out of the bathroom and past my organized room to the door where my father raged. I opened the door slightly before squeezing through standing below the 6 foot giant.

"I was sleeping," I say softly now.

"Why is there no food in the house?!" He barks walking over to me. I see the blood red in his green eyes and his speech is slurred. Drunk.

"You never give me money to buy any so that's what happened," I say frustrated.

"So what? You don't eat?" He says sarcastically, "With a fat ass like that you must have something to eat. Where you hiding it?" He takes another swig of alcohol.

"I don't have any food."

"Oh so you're starving too eh?" He steps closer and I step back bouncing into the wall, I was cornered, "You with your fat ass and big thighs and healthy skin are starving? Why I don't I look like you then? Huh Adira? Answer me that."

"Because you do drugs and drink and smoke." I snap at him.

"Oh! So you're judging my lifestyle eh?"

I huff and roll my eyes heading back to my room. He cuts me off slamming the door shut before I even get a chance to open it. /

Before I realise what's happened he's thrown his beer at the wall, causing the glass to shatter on the wooden floor and I'm braced against the wall, his hand around my throat in a strong grip.

"Now you listen to me little girl, I don't need no sass from you," He places his other hand around my neck and squeezes tighter.

Barely being able to see I close my eyes trying to focus on taking a breath as the tears slide out, "Look at me when I'm talking to you!" He demands now jerking my body.

My eyes bulge open, not at the fear of the sudden command but rather a crackling sound I feel in my throat. A pain ruptures throughout my body with an intense heat followed by a pulsing ache.

"Now you go down those damn stairs and when I get down you better have something for me to eat!" He orders lifting me by my throat and throwing me down the stairs.

I feel the aching as my body is forced to withstand the trauma as I tumble down the stairs. I hit my ribs and thighs on most of the journey down and when I finally stop falling I've landed on my stomach, causing my chest and hip to cry out in distress. I stay on the ground for a while trying to muster enough energy to get to my feet, because once that happened I was running away. It doesn't matter to where as long as it's not here. The warmth of blood runs slowly down my face, probably from my forehead and maybe some from my lip and somewhere considering a small puddle that has formed around me.

"And afterwards you better clean this shit up!" His voice rings from up the stairs.

As though in flight mode, my body gains a jolt of energy and I use it to painfully rise to my feet. Holding on to my ribs I hobble forward praying that my body would stay intact long enough for me to escape.I have to be excruciatingly quiet as I pass the living room area that's now filled with empty beer cans, bottles, booze, needles and burnt out cigarettes and head to the back door. It was the middle of winter now meaning I'd be stepping into 30 degree weather wearing only a cheap hoodie and thin jeans. Just my luck. I hear him beginning to descend the stairs now so I quicken my steps sliding out to the back. Once the door closes behind me, I run!

I hear a bark not too far behind and know that Chester is right on my tail, so I push myself forward as I limp-run as far as my legs can take me. The frigid wind slaps my face in torment and the glacial terrain of the woods isn't much of a help either but despite either one I keep pushing forward. Running from my reality that seems to be a nightmare. Running from the bitter pain of what was behind me. Just running because I knew anything, no matter the circumstances, anything was better than living in that house.

I keep running for what seems like hours but was at most half an hour before Chester makes an alarming bark. I stop in my tracks just in time to avoid running right off the edge of Stone Death Cliff. I take a breath looking at the woods around me then down at my injuries. Shit! I was bleeding a lot and my throat still burned! I tried to take a deep breath and all that did was cause a jab in my chest that felt like a sharpened piece of ice was forcing it's way through my clavicle. The pain was so agonizing I felt my body pulsing as I fell to my knees my head landing at the very edge of the cliff.

Not knowing what I'd do, I decide on nothing. What's the point anyways? If I live or die there's no difference, so what's the purpose in living. Despite these thoughts I look around admiring the beauty of the snow covered woods around me, the sound of the water as it hit the side of the cliff far below me. I look downward and see the sharply pointed rocks that stick out of the treacherous waters below. It was a bittersweet sort of picture. Beauty and Destruction working together to form such a blissful scene.

Chester rushes over to me pressing his face against mine. I look at him and notice that he blends perfectly with the white snow behind him making the brown of his eyes stick out even more. He makes a whining sound as though he's urging me to go on, as though danger was near. Little did he know this was the end of it all. I was finally going to be free. So I pet his head and kiss his ear taking a deep breath and regretting it instantly.

I look up at the overcast white sky and smile shortly as my eyes droop closed, thinking the last thoughts I'd have on this world and the only thing that rushes by is Emerson and his promise.

"Put her on the bed," A voice says.

There's a ringing in my ear and my body feels rigid. Is this what death feels like. Curious as to where I was I opened my eyes to see a complete stranger holding me in his arms. Under normal circumstances I would've screamed and pushed him away but frankly I didn't care much.

My body was wrapped in a blanket but it didn't seem to do much help to my frozen skin. I was placed on a table and a bright light appeared before me causing me to squint my eyes.

"Why's the mutt still here?" Another voice says further away.

"She's my best friend." A male voice defends coldly, "I have to make sure she's okay."

"Now Gavin, that's not how we treat guests," A female voice scolded, "Would you like some more hot cocoa my dear?"

"No thank you ma'am." There's a smile in his voice now.

"Is she okay?" This voice I know but that must've been a mistake. It couldn't be who I thought otherwise I'd be just as crazy as my drugged out father. Nonetheless I look over to the source, past every other face to the one I wanted to see most.

My eyes widen and I couldn't stop the aching gasp that I took. Emerson?!
Last Updated: 8/20/2019
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