Sneak Peak

As I said before, I’m currently working on two books.  I’ve teamed up with another author, but I’ll tell you more about that later.  🙂  Right now, I want to give you a sneak peak of one of the books.  Just remember, it’s raw and unedited, so you are sure to find mistakes.  Enjoy!


Sneak Peak

Earlier today, or maybe it was yesterday, I’m not really sure, I gathered my courage and decided today is the day.  The day I will break free from my prison that’s disguised as a home.  A once loving home filled with laughter and the smell of baking cookies.  But that was a long time ago.

My heart races wildly in my chest as I peek down the old wooden stairs and spot my step-father asleep in his blue, worn-out recliner.  He hadn’t been asleep long, the cigarette still smoking in the ashtray, a beer loosely clutched in his hand as the bottom of the can rests on the arm of the chair.

I tiptoe to his room, listening intently.  The low voices from the TV drift upstairs.  Just as I reach for the doorknob, the wooden floor creaks loudly with my last step.  I freeze mid-step, my hand clutching the knob, but not turning.  Not breathing.  I wait and silently chant, “Please don’t wake up.  Please don’t wake up.”  I wait a minute, a lifetime, until my hand slowly twists the doorknob, letting the door drift open.

Dirty floral curtains cover the window, and a full-sized bed with a metal frame headboard is set against the wall.  Opposite the bed is a small wooden desk with one long drawer and a plastic chair.  If you didn’t know my Frank Stone, aka my step-father, you would think vagrants resided here with their meager furnishings.

With a gray tattered backpack in my hand, I hurry over to the corner, quietly drop to my knees, and lift the one loose board that hides his secrets, or so he thought.  But I know. Mother knew.  Frank thought it was a secret, and I never let on that I knew about his hiding spot, his secret stash, the little leather-bound book that always rests on top that holds names and dates— all the information needed to blow the entire operation out of the water.

I reach down into the dark space under the floor and take out bundle after bundle of cash, stuffing it into my backpack.  I work feverishly until my backpack is full, stuffed with one hundred-dollar bills.  I stare at the leather-bound book for a moment, thinking.  Making a quick decision, I leave the book and carefully, and with shaking hands, lower the board back in place.  Stealing money is bad enough.  Stealing the book is a certain death sentence.

I softly close the door behind me, and just as I reach my bedroom door, which is straight across the hall, I hear him moving around.  My heart thunders in my ears.  If he catches me…

“Belle!” he bellows up the stairs.  That’s what he calls me even though it’s not my name.  A nickname my mom gave me a long time ago, teasing that I would be a Southern Belle.

My insides quiver as I step inside my room.  I can’t make him wait long.  I drop the backpack and kick it under my bed, then grab the hem of my shirt and pull it over my head.  Next, I shrug out of my jeans and grab my sleeping gown.  Just as I slide it over my head, I hear him again.

“Bell!  Get your ass down here!”  He’s angry.  He’s always angry when he drinks, which is all the time.

I race down the stairs to where he waits on me.  Swallowing hard, I say in a hurried voice.  “Yes, Father?”

He narrows his eyes and studies me.  I feel the weight of his gaze as his eyes roam up and down my body.  Not in a sexual way, but more of a ‘what are you up to’ way.  Does he know what I did?  Oh, God.  I pray not.

“Get in there and clean up the mess.  I’m going to bed.”

“Yes, Father.”

I watch with defeat as he walks over to the front door and latches all three deadbolts, before pulling a key from his pocket and locking one last bolt.  He slides the key back into his pocket then turns and grabs the rail, taking one slow step at a time.

Trapped.  I stare at the door that holds me prisoner. Tears want to spring forward, but I tamp them down.  I’d just have to find another way.  But one way or another, I am leaving tonight.  I don’t have a choice.  Tomorrow, Davie will come looking for his money

Walking over, I switch off the small 19-inch box TV before picking up a plate from the end table and carrying it into the kitchen.  I wash up the few dirty dishes, empty the ashtray, and throw away the beer cans.  I need to take my time and give Father time to go to sleep.

As I methodically work, doing every chore on automatic, I remember my life from before.


Mom took off about three years ago, or so father says.  That was the same time I heard them argue over his line of work.  Father is a drug mule. He smuggles drugs one way, cash the other.  Mom wanted a better, less dangerous life for me and wanted Father to stop, but he insisted it would be a death sentence.   We can move, she’d say, over and over every time they argued.  After the last argument, I didn’t see Mom anymore, and I often wonder if she got killed.  Maybe he killed her.  Maybe the drug people, like Davie, killed her.

After that, he locked me in the house.  Said it was for my own protection.  He drank more and after a few smacks across my face, I learned very quickly to do as I was told and not to talk back.

I’ve had enough of this life.

2 thoughts on “Sneak Peak

  1. Hi Hannah! I just happened upon this page and your sneak peak looks amazing! I am very interested to read your book when it is finished. Do you have a name for the book yet? How can I know it is available once it is completed? Thanks!



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