More than anything in your life, all you wanted was a family. A family that would've raised you, protected you, fed you, and loved you as if you lived with them forever. All you wanted was at least one person in the world that cared about you enough to get you out of the lonely, depressing life that you had since you were only a few years old. All you wanted was to have at least one person in the world that you could've looked up to, and trusted with all your heart to keep you safe. All you wanted was at least one person that you could've been able to go to whenever you needed help, and who would've been there for you no matter what. However, all of your wishing had been helpless for these past few years and probably would've been for many more years to come.
You were an orphan since you were four years old. The orphanage that you lived in from then up until now was located just outside of London. It was rather small, and it was on rare occasions that an orphan there ever got adopted, and you always hated to live there. For one thing, the environment in that orphanage was not as clean as you would've liked, and you were constantly getting sick with the bacteria that built up inside you. Even though the people who worked there gave you medicine to try and make you feel better, it didn't help you whatsoever. Many of the rooms in the orphanage were tiny, and they often held up to five or more orphans in a room.
But if there was one thing that you hated about the orphanage the most, it was the food. Throughout all of these years that you have lived in that place, you have never gotten used to the horrible taste of the food they served. In the morning, at noon, and in the evening when all the orphans usually ate, you always spent the whole time staring down at your food as if it were a mysterious species that came straight from another planet. You never ate that food unless it was forced on you.
You constantly looked out the window of the rather small room that you shared with Sophie, your only friend, and always watched with envy and grief at the sight of a child happily walking down the street with their parents. How you wished you could've lived a life like them with your parents right by your side that were always there for you no matter what.
As far as you knew, you had absolutely no memory of your parents. In fact, you didn't have any kinds of memories from before you lived in this orphanage. You didn't remember the fact that you were born in America, living a normal life in a normal house with a normal family. You didn't remember your father accepting his newest job offer that made your family travel across the ocean all the way to London, England, when you were barely a year old. You didn't remember the babysitter who visited your house each day and took care of you when your parents went off to work.
But the memory that pained you not to remember the most was that fateful day that occurred when you just turned four. Your parents left for work, and your babysitter came to look after you as usual. The whole day started out normal like any other until news reached your house. The bus that your parents always used to get to work lost control while driving and slammed fiercely into a building, killing everyone that was inside it at the time. When the dreadful news reached your ears, you weren't able to make any sense of it. The crash didn't mean anything to you. All that mattered was your belief of seeing your parents come home again in the evening, just like always. But it never happened.
Since all of your relatives lived back in America and you had no possible chance to live with them whatsoever, you were sent to the nearest orphanage just a few miles away from your home, which would've been cleared out soon. All that was brought with you to the orphanage was a fairly large bag that contained supposedly memorable things, which included your birth certificate, a picture of you and your dead parents, and your favorite childhood toy.
That bag had been with you since then, and almost every night you took out at least one of its items in hopes of trying to remember what your childhood was like. But every time your mind went blank, you would put everything back in the bag and silently cry, constantly asking over and over in your head why your life had to end up the way it was.
You hated living in the orphanage. You were always hungry and were practically as skinny as a twig. Recently, you have been coming up with a plan to escape from the orphanage at night. To escape from the place of misery and loneliness and travel to a brand new life, hopefully one that had good food and a fairly adequate shelter. Since you always loved the outdoors, you thought you wouldn't mind sleeping in the grass. After all, sleeping among the presence of nature seemed so much better than sleeping in a rough bed in a stuffy room.
One night in the middle of September, you lie in your bed, wide awake, your (e/c) eyes staring up at the ceiling. You were going to be turning thirteen in only a few months according to your birth certificate, and you didn't want your birthday to be spent in a place you didn't like. Tonight was the night that you decided to run away, to start a new life, to never have to worry about being surrounded by a dirty environment and eating terrible food again.
You sighed, rolling over in your bed so that you were able to make out Sophie. Her back faced you as she slept quietly in her bed. You stared at her sleeping figure longingly. Sophie had been your good friend ever since your first day in the orphanage when you ended up sharing the same room with her. You always felt free talking to her about any kinds of problems that you had, and you trusted her with every secret that was shared. She had been a great companion to you throughout all these years, but you knew that if your escape would've been successful, it was time to say goodbye.
You blinked, turning your gaze from Sophie back to your bed sheets, ignoring the constant rumbling of your stomach. Your eyelids were heavy with exhaustion, and for a few seconds, you thought about curling back up in bed and falling asleep. But you were certainly not looking forward to spending another long, rough day at the orphanage. You turned your gaze towards the floor, where you had your bag placed next to your bed. You extended a hand and began to dig through it until you felt something thin and light come into your grasp. You retrieved your hand from the bag and moved it towards the moonlight so that you were able to see what was held in it.
You felt your throat slowly tighten as you stared at the picture of you and your parents from many years ago. You were so small back then, and looked so healthy compared to the way you were now. You stared at your parents for a good few minutes, trying to memorize their clothes, their eye color, hoping that by doing so, some memories will flow into your head. But as always, there was no success. You felt your eyes slowly fill with tears as you continued to stare at their smiling faces. Back then, they had no idea of the kind of fate that they would've suffered, and neither did you. Back then, you had no idea that your happy life would've crumpled up and would've been replaced with misery. How you wished that you had some kind of memory of your childhood so that you would've been able to cling onto it for the rest of your life. At least one memory, happy or sad, would've made you feel much more complete than the way you were now. But of course, things never went your way.
Before you could've let any kinds of tears fall from your face, you quickly put the picture back inside your bag, making sure to wipe your eyes to get rid of those depressing tears. The unusual thing about you was that no kind of scolding, yelling, or physical pain would've been able to make you cry. It was always the forgotten memories that triggered the sadness that was locked up inside you.
You sighed before you zipped up your bag and slowly climbed out of bed. The clothes that you had on at the moment were disgusting compared to the kind you wore in the picture. Now all you wore was a white T-shirt that was almost completely stained, and a pair of thin, worn out jeans. It dismayed you to wear the same pair of clothes all the time. Even your sneakers looked like they were just on the edge of completely falling apart.
You quickly shook your head as you tried to get rid of those thoughts before they could've disgusted you any further. You silently crept across the room over to the bed where Sophie was sleeping, her light brown hair golden under the moonlight. She was about the same age as you, younger by only a few months.
You cautiously leaned over Sophie's sleeping figure and poked her in the side, staying absolutely still as you saw her squirm in place until her bright blue eyes opened to meet yours.
"_-____...?" she murmured slowly as she struggled to sit up in bed, rubbing her eyes with one hand as she looked at you blearily. Seeing her so exhausted almost made you want to roll over on the floor and fall asleep right there, but that was impossible.
"Hey, Sophie," you murmured as you set your elbows down on the rim of her bed and gazed at her with excited, sparkling eyes. "I'm going to do it."
Sophie tilted her head to one side and looked at you in confusion. "Do what?"
You stood up and walked over to your bag and slung it over your shoulders. "I'm going to get out of here." You pointed to the window and gazed outside. "I'm going to go through that window and run away from here."
At that, Sophie let out a startled gasp before she sprang out of bed and dashed over to you. "_____! You can't do that!" she said in a panic as she grabbed your arm. "What if they know you're gone and come looking for you? What if you starve to death? What if you get hit by a car? What if somebody abducts you and kills you?"
"Sophie, stop worrying," you said in assurance as you released her tight grip on your arm. "I'll be just fine living on the streets of London, where I'm sure there's plenty of food to find and a good place to sleep."
"What?" Sophie asked in shock and disbelief. "That's nonsense! The only food you'll ever be able to find will come out of garbage cans and the only place you'll be able to sleep will be straight in the grass. And you're telling me that you want to live that way?"
You couldn't help the tiny smile that crossed your lips. "I don't mind, actually. After all, I bet the kinds of food I'll be able to find will taste a lot better than the food here, and I'd rather sleep among nature than in a rusty, old bed."
Sophie crossed her arms and glared at you in disbelief. "Why did you come up with this idea all of a sudden? You're always so quiet and shy
and isolated. You don't seem like the kind of girl who'd actually run away!"
"That doesn't mean that it's impossible for me to do it," you replied calmly as you walked over to the window and slowly started to open it, already setting your gaze on the road ahead of you. A small wind picked up and gently brushed through your (h/c) hair. "I have to do this," you said quietly. "I can't live in this place anymore. The food here is terrible, the environment here isn't clean, and it's too crowded for me." You turned away from the window and faced Sophie once again, determination glistening in your eyes. "I have to do this, Sophie. I have to
Sophie sighed as she looked at you in grief. "But
what about me?" she asked, her voice barely a whisper. "We've been friends for years, and what will happen after you leave? I'll be here all by myself, all alone, and I'll miss you."
You slowly dropped your gaze to the floor and frowned. "I know. I'll miss you too, but it's time for me to go my own way."
"So you actually want to live on the streets like a homeless person?" Sophie asked sarcastically. After a few moments of no response, she sighed as she realized that arguing with you was pointless.
You lifted your head so that both of your gazes were able to meet, and you walked over to Sophie and wrapped your arms around her. "I'll be fine," you promised. "I know that my chances of finding someone that will adopt me are small, but I have to do this."
Sophie pulled away from the hug and looked into your eyes. "Will you visit sometime?"
You sighed and lowered your gaze. "I doubt it. If I come near here again, they might find me. I think it's best if I go my own way and travel far away from here."
After a few seconds, Sophie slowly nodded and took a step back, allowing you to grasp your bag and sling it over one shoulder. You approached the window and looked back at Sophie, the friend that you have known for so long, and smiled. "Well, I guess this is it."
She nodded slowly, her eyes shining in the moonlight. "I'll miss you, _____. Be careful, okay?
You nodded. "Goodbye, Sophie. I'll miss you, too."
With that, you turned your head back to the window and slowly climbed out, looking down at the ground below you. It was a two story drop, and you had nowhere to cling onto. You had to jump from where you were now. You turned your head to face Sophie, who still looked at you. "I'm going to jump."
"What?" her gaze widened in shock as she approached you. "But
it's a two story fall! You're going to break a bone, especially since you're so weak!"
You shook your head. "I'll be okay." You grasped onto the edge of the window, your legs dangling behind you. All you had to do was make this leap, and you would be free. Of course, it wasn't too late to turn back until you jumped, but you chose not to.
You took a deep breath as you closed your eyes and released your grip on the window, instantly feeling yourself plummet down two stories and wind lift your hair. You almost let out a squeak at the drop until you felt your legs collide with grass, causing you to stumble on the ground and release your grip on your bag. You moaned as you felt a sharp pain cross your right ankle, and you attempted to pull your face out of the grass after a few seconds of pain.
Slowly, you extended your arms out in front of you and lifted yourself up so that you were able to take a look at your surroundings. The grass where you fell has been pulled from its roots, causing the soil to become visible in your landing spot. Your whole body was in pain, but it was your ankle that hurt the most. Slowly, you lifted yourself into a sitting position and looked up at the window of your old room. Sophie was still staring down at you with shock that you actually survived that jump, and you gave her the thumbs up sign despite your agonizing situation.
Slowly, you staggered to your feet, wincing and gritting your teeth as sharp pain flashed through your ankle. It wasn't broken, but you figured that you might've sprained it. Of course, you wouldn't let an injured ankle keep you from escaping. You flung your bag over your shoulders and looked up at Sophie, who waved to you, once more. You smiled at her before you limped away, towards London and towards a new life.
Well, life among the streets of London was much harder than you thought. For one thing, it took you all night and all of the next day to reach the big city. You would've been able to walk a lot faster, but you had to limp because of your ankle. Any kinds of food you were able to find came from people that pitied you, and the only water you drank was from this extremely long river, which you made sure to stay close to. By the time you reached London, you were exhausted, and your ankle was on the brink of falling apart. Your stomach was rumbling with hunger, but you didn't let it distract you. You had to find a temporary place to sleep where you would've been able to find food.
Walking through the busy streets of London was an almost horrifying experience for you. First of all, there was an endless amount of people that you didn't know who walked alongside you, and you became very self-conscious. They all looked so well-fed and healthy compared to your fragile, skinny figure. There were so many streets you had to cross, and so many cars you had to dodge. The only good thing that came out of your journey so far was a large piece of bread that a nice man offered to you.
Of course, you accepted the bread without hesitation and ate it happily, amazed at how great it tasted compared to the orphanage food. Although your hunger problem had been slightly fixed, you still had your ankle to worry about. All of your walking had caused it to throb so painfully that it slowly started to become numb. By the time it had turned into the evening, you finally reached a small park which had many benches and was surrounded by bushes and trees.
Dark, heavy clouds were starting to form by the time you reached the park, and you walked for a little longer until you approached a bench that was placed right in front of a cluster of bushes and trees. You staggered behind the bench and through the bushes and smiled at your new sleeping spot. It seemed pretty comfortable since the grass was so soft. You sat down on the grass, relieved to finally be relaxing after a whole day of walking with a sprained ankle.
You looked down at your right foot as you felt it throb in pain. Since your shoes were on, you had no idea how badly you might've injured your ankle. You took a deep breath before you untied your sneaker and fiercely pulled it off. You let out a loud yelp as violent pain tore up your ankle all the way to your knee. You bit on your fist as you tried not to let tears of pain escape from your tightly shut eyes. When the pain finally subsided, you opened your eyes and looked down at your foot only to gasp in horror. It was swollen, deep red, and the spot where you injured your ankle was already starting to turn purple. Your stomach flipped in queasiness as you continued to stare at your foot, and you quickly shook your head. You would've worried more about your ankle later, after you got some sleep. All you had to do was put the least amount of pressure on it as possible, and it would've been fine.
You sighed as you rested your head on the grass. You turned your gaze up to the cloudy sky, partially covered by the trees, and pulled your bag closer. You figured that you would've slept here for at least a few more days until you were able to find food. Then, you would've traveled to another part of London where you would've stayed there for a few days until you moved again. With this pattern, you would've constantly gone from place to place, making it impossible for those orphanage people to find you.
As you closed your eyes, you felt your heart ache. You would've missed Sophie, but as long as you knew she was safe back at the orphanage, you were fine. It would've been hard to get used to your new life among many active people, but you would've managed somehow. At least you didn't have to spend your 13th birthday at the orphanage, but in a place where you felt free and relaxed.
You slowly fell asleep, unaware of the heavy rain that approached you.
England sighed in exhaustion as he stared out the window from his comfortable spot on the couch. He hated being stuck inside all day doing nothing but paperwork for his boss, and he needed to go outside and refresh his mind. He turned his gaze to the blank TV and stared at his reflection in the screen. He could tell that his eyes were bleak with exhaustion, and every part of his body seemed to ache. His life seemed so boring lately. All he did was fill out paperwork and go to useless meetings. It didn't help being lonely almost all of the time and having nobody to share his dull life with.
England slowly got up from the couch and walked over to the window, staring out at the neighborhood that was dimly lit by the streetlamps. He had to complete any unfinished paperwork the following day, and he knew that he couldn't stand staying inside for one more day. Rain began to fall and it was already dark, but that didn't stop him from approaching the front door, putting on his overcoat, grabbing his umbrella, and stepping outside. Almost instantly, England felt cold rain beat against his face, and he opened his umbrella and raised it over his head before he took a brief look at his surroundings. Although rain was one of the things that he hated the most, he didn't want to let it stop him from getting the fresh air that he needed.
England started to walk down the street, figuring that he would've gone to the nearest park and back. Hopefully that would've been enough for him to briefly get his mind off of the excessive amount of work that he'd been doing for the past few weeks. Although he didn't want to admit it, he also hoped that it would've been able to let him get rid of the loneliness that slowly crept up on him again.
As England continued to walk down the street, he felt the force of the rain increase until it became almost a downpour, and by then he had already reached the park. It was pretty small, with only a long, straight path, a few benches and many trees and bushes to accompany it. There were only a few people there that came and go, and the path glistened in the heavy rain. England slowly continued to walk through the park, watching the rain as it poured around him.
With the exception of the sound of the heavy rain, the park was almost completely silent. Usually it would've been loud and active with people as they came and went throughout the day. It felt a little strange to come there and actually find it almost deserted. England continued to walk silently through the park, almost feeling at peace for the first time in weeks until he heard a loud rustling noise in one of the bushes, which caused him to instantly stop and turn his head in the direction of the noise. He felt his heart increase its pace at the thought of somebody watching him, but after a few seconds of silence, England only shrugged and continued his walk.
As soon as he did so, the rustling noise resumed once again, coming from the exact same bush as the last one. England stopped walking and once again turned in the direction of the noise, slightly annoyed with himself for not ignoring it in the first place. A low moan of pain was heard from behind the bush, and he blinked in confusion.
Is someone behind there? The possibility of that being true seemed highly unlikely to England, and he shook his head as forced himself to keep on walking.
." The same voice moaned once again, only this time England kept on walking, trying to ignore it as much as possible.
Another loud rustling noise followed before there was a shrill squeak of pain. "Ow!"
England groaned as he froze in place and turned around to once again face that very same bush. He now knew for sure that there was someone hiding behind there, and whoever they were, they sounded like they were in a lot of pain. Of course, it would've been ungentlemanly not to go and help them out, but he didn't want to spend time caring for them, whoever they were.
Slowly, England approached the bush, watching as the rustling continued. When he was a short distance away from it, he grabbed it and quickly pulled it away. "Aha!" he yelled as was able to get a good view of what was in front of him, although just a few seconds later, he realized that it was not what he expected it to be.
Instead of finding someone who England expected to be about his age, he found you, desperately clinging onto your ankle as you tried to massage it, your eyes shut tightly in pain. As soon as you felt the presence of someone else, you quickly opened your eyes and lifted your head, nearly jumping back in surprise as you saw England staring directly at you.
"A-ah!" you yelped in fear as you quickly drew your hands away from your ankle and scrambled backwards. Your eyes widened in shock as you met England's gaze. Your heart beat rapidly and your breath came out short and quick. You had never, ever expected someone to invade you this way. "I-Intruder!" you gasped as you tried to scramble to your feet despite the searing pain in your ankle. You winced as you sat back down on the ground. "Leave me alone! I don't remember doing anything to you
!" You quickly grasped your bag in your hands and raised it defensively.
England only sighed and rolled his eyes. "Look, I'm not going to hurt you. After all, it already seems like you're hurt enough, with all of the moaning that you've been doing."
You raised the bag so that it partially covered your face and glared back at him. "I-It's nothing of your concern
!" You felt slightly relieved that he wasn't going to hurt you, but you were still tense. Throughout the few seconds of silence that followed, you took some time to examine him thoroughly. He wore a dark brown overcoat, and with him he carried a black umbrella. He had tousled blonde hair, emerald green eyes, and you had to admit that you couldn't have helped but stare for a few seconds at his unusually thick eyebrows.
After a few tense seconds passed, you slowly lowered the bag and placed it beside you, staring up at England nervously. You suddenly became aware of the fact that you were completely soaked right up to the bone, and you started to shiver, which made your ankle release another sharp wave of pain.
Throughout the next few moments of silence, England allowed himself to examine you as well. You had (e/c) eyes and (h/c) hair that stuck to your face and glistened with rain in the dim light. You were unusually skinny, and your eyes were dull and exhausted, all of the misery and depression of your hard life visible in them. All you had on was a simple shirt, dark jeans, and sneakers, and England noticed that you were shivering. He actually felt sorry that a girl like you had to live outside in such terrible weather like this.
"What are you doing out here in the rain all by yourself?" England asked you after a short while. You were slightly surprised at his unusually calm tone, and you lowered your head so that your gaze locked with your bag.
" you played with your fingers nervously, unsure of how to respond. The only person you had an actual conversation for as far as you knew was with Sophie, and you certainly didn't feel like starting a conversation with a stranger you just met a few seconds ago. He didn't seem so harmful, and you guessed that if you told him you were homeless and ran away from an orphanage then he might've taken you in. Still, you didn't keep your hopes up on that possibility.
you see, I'm an orphan," you started, your gaze wandering on literally everything but England. "My parents died when I was small, and I ran away from an orphanage just a few days ago, and I've been living on the streets. I sprained my ankle, and I'm sleeping here temporarily until I find enough food to go and find another place to sleep." You ended your story there, afraid that if you told this strange person any more, he would've assaulted you.
England slowly nodded as a look of understanding crossed his face. "So you don't have a home
You shook your head. "No, I don't. I hadn't had a real home since I was maybe
four years old or so."
Another moment of silence passed until England sighed. "Well, I'm sorry to hear that. Hopefully things will eventually turn out better for you." And with that, he removed his hand from the bush and proceeded with his walk.
You gasped in surprise. The strange, random guy was leaving already? But you felt like you had so much more to tell him! Didn't he pity you the slightest bit? Didn't he want to take you in? "Wait!" you gasped as you staggered to your feet and tore out of your sleeping spot, grabbing hold of England's wrist before he could've walked away any further. As he turned his head and looked at you in surprise, you continued. "Y-You can't go now!"
"And why is that?" England asked, his voice slightly on the edge of annoyance as he struggled to break free from your unusually tight grasp. He honestly didn't want to deal with you any more than he had to, and he just wanted to go home as soon as possible and forget that any of this ever happened.
because!" you replied as you once again found yourself unable to say anything more. You dropped your hand to your side and looked at England with determination. "I-I mean
d-don't you want to
adopt me or something?" your voice lowered until it was barely a whisper, and you lowered your gaze to the floor.
Another few seconds of silence passed until England replied in a somewhat irritated tone. "Young lady, I'll have you know that I'm not looking for anybody to adopt, and I don't think I
ever will. Now if you don't mind, I'll be on my way."
With that, England turned around and left for the final time, and you watched him go. You did mind. For some reason, you wanted him to stay so you could've learned more about him. You were determined to do whatever it took to talk to him again, even if it meant silently following him home. With one foot, you hopped back to your sleeping spot and grabbed your bag before you limped back into the street again, squinting through the pouring rain as you watched his figure get smaller and smaller as he walked away. You were shivering with cold even more fiercely now, but you ignored it.
I haven't even asked him what his name was
After making sure that your bag fit comfortably over your shoulder, you grasped it tightly and took one last look at your old sleeping spot before you quietly followed him.