Chapter One

Chapter One

A Chapter by Krystle Lewallen

The Redemption Series



Chapter One


I haven't been here before, this place that is as dark as a bottomless hole, where time and pain does not matter, but I welcome the escape. The emptiness that I feel inside has hollowed out my existence. Every action seems manufactured and every sound is wordless.

I don't know how long I have been laying here- minutes, hours, days? I can hear the soft chatter of people outside of my room. There are sounds of footsteps across the wooden floors, doors opening and closing, cars arriving and leaving. Familiar faces peek in through a crack in the door, but quickly they close it.

Then there is silence and no more cars or soft chatter. No one peeks in through the crack in the door, but I don't care. All of my needs have gone and all of my ambitions washed away. There is nothing but the burn in my chest when I think about her. And then the dark consumes me again.


My bedroom door opens, and I stare blankly as my Aunt walks towards me. Her lips move, but I don't understand the words. She looks worried, sad. Kneeling in front of me she places her elbows on my bed, steeples her hands together, and closes her eyes. Placing her forehead on her joined fingertips, there is complete silence.

Standing up, she looks at me and moves my hair away from my wet cheek. She says something else, but again, they are wordless sounds. And then, she turns and walks out of the room, closing the door behind her.

It grows dark, so I close my eyes in an attempt to sleep. When they open, the room is full of light again- unlike me.

There is a tray of food on my night stand, but I can't seem to move. Then I think about her being gone, and hot tears start to roll down my cheeks, my pillow absorbing every drop. The pain returns, so I curl into a ball and sob quietly into my blanket. After a few hours of quietly sobbing, my tears desert me. Finding a speck on the wall, I stare at it, feeling numb inside.

I hear footsteps and the turn of the doorknob in the hall outside my room. But the door doesn't open, and the doorknob snaps back into its resting place. There is silence, a sigh, and then the sound of footsteps fading away. I rise off my bed in search of the bathroom, but every move feels distant. Once I am finished, I lay back down in my bed staring at the food on my night stand. But, I don't feel like eating. My stomach growls in anticipation, but I am too gone to care about my body's basic needs beyond the involuntary. I could care less if I wasted away from hunger. It doesn't matter anymore. None of it matters. Life is meaningless without her in it.

My bedroom door opens again, but I don't need to look to see who is coming. I know it's Faye. She sits in the chair in the corner of my room. Pulling out a book, she opens it and starts to read.

Faye has always been a great friend, the best. She was always there when I needed her for the past ten years, but it doesn't seem to matter right now. Nothing seems to matter. I should probably say something to her. Something like, "Hi." or "What are you doing?" or "Go away." That last one seems the most likely to come out of my mouth right now, but I can't even work up the energy to speak at all.

I fall asleep again and then wake to the sound of Faye reading. She is reading from our favorite book, Divergent. We have read it together so many times that I can repeat every line verbatim.

I sit up feeling a little light headed. Faye has stopped reading mid sentence and is frozen, as if she is afraid that one little movement from her will cause a relapse in my actions. I rise out of bed and repeat the mechanical-like movement of going to the bathroom. When I come out, she is lying on my bed with the book hovering above her face, staring intently at it.

Walking over to the bed, I pull the covers back and slip under them. After a few moments I turn towards Faye, and she is staring at me. A sudden burst of emotion explodes from me. "Why?" Is all I can manage to croak out before I start crying all over again, the force of it shaking my whole body.

Faye gathers me in her arms, and I bury my face in her shoulder. She strokes my hair and holds me tight just like Grandma would do. It makes me miss her even more and adds fuel to the fire. "We'll never know," Faye says quietly. "But there has to be a reason. You have to go on."

What possible reason could there be for this much tragedy to strike one person's life, all before the age of eighteen? This wasn't the first tragedy that I have had to endure. My life was a never-ending mass of tragedies.

I lost my father to cancer when I was six. I watched him become pale and weak. His eyes became sunken and his skin loose and leathery; this man who had once been so strong, who use to run around and chase me in the backyard, couldn't even lift his arms to hug me. He died while I was at school making it impossible for me to say goodbye.

My dad's death broke my mom. Choosing a life of utter freedom for herself, she disregarded the children that she had. Drugs and alcohol became a constant in her life. But, where did that leave my brother and me? She never gave us a thought. My brother and I spent many nights alone having to feed ourselves. Collin was twelve at the time and didn't know how to do much cooking. We got by on a lot of microwavable food. When there was nothing left to eat, we would ask our neighbor for food. She was kind and would come over to cook for us at times. If it hadn't been for her, we probably would have starved.

After missing too much school, Child Services was called. When they came to investigate our condition, my mom was passed out on the couch. Empty liquor containers littered the coffee table, and a bottle of pills sat next to her cigarettes. They hauled her off to jail and took my brother and me to a temporary foster home where we lived for six months.

Our grandmother, whom I had no recollection of, picked us up one day. All of our bags were packed and loaded into her tiny car. She had light brown skin and long black hair. She was short- just a little taller than Collin was.  When she smiled, the crinkles around her eyes made her look pretty. She walked over to the steps we were sitting on, leaned down, and stuck her hand out.

Collin did not hesitate. He placed his hand in hers and shook it vigorously. "Hi," she said smiling widely. "I'm Susan, your grandmother." I could tell Collin took an instant liking to her. "Wow, that's some powerful handshake you got there. Do you play baseball?"

"No, but I like baseball." His voice rose just a bit, and his eyes widened as the corners of his lips turned up.

"You're in luck. I know a little league coach who would love to have you on his team, especially with an arm like that." She looked over at me, but I didn't feel the instant connection like Collin obviously had. "Katy, that dress is gorgeous." I was wearing a pink and purple sundress. It was my best, and I wanted to look nice for her.

"Thank you," I said shyly.

Standing up, her gaze move between Collin and I. "How would you guys like to come live with me?" she asked. I didn't think we had a choice since she had already taken so much effort cramming all of our bags into that tiny car she had.

Collin stood quickly. "Really?" He was excited about the prospect of living with our new grandma. I wasn't sure, so I just sat there.

She smiles at him, and her eyes twinkle brightly as she looks over to me. "Katy, how about you? I have a dog at home named Pixie, and she loves kids. I am certain she would love to have some company besides me."

I loved dogs, although we could never have one. Mom always said they were too much responsibility, and she was not going to add to her list of things that she was already responsible for. Dad always rallied for us, but mom always won the arguments. It wasn't even a thought after dad died.

I liked the idea of having a dog, more than I would admit. So I went with the most logical answer to her question. "Well you did already pack the car," I reasoned.

She smiled widely as I placed my hand in her outstretched one. When we got into the car, she let Collin and me pick the music. We got to take turns, and I was ecstatic. With mom I felt like we were never allowed to do anything, not even talk.

It didn't take long for me to grow attached to Grandma. She taught me so much and encouraged me to do good things with my life. Most of all she loved me unconditionally. It seemed that's what was missing with mom. It was the extra ingredient that made life much sweeter and more livable. Grandma was truly a breath of fresh air.

We were close and talked about everything- including boys. I watched as she would sing while cooking. She made us laugh, hugged us often, helped us with homework, and grounded us when we got in trouble. She very quickly became special to me. I was thankful God had put her in my life.

I loved her and she loved us. But now, she was gone. I would never get to hear her sweet voice or feel her embrace again. And never get to watch as she cooked and sang. My dad was gone, my mom was gone, and now my grandma was gone. Her passing was the worst of all because she had raised and loved me.

It wasn't fair to have every person ripped out of my life. I found myself shouting at God, "Why? What was the point of taking every person on this Earth who loved me away?" Now, I felt like there was no one. I was alone was my last thought as pain glided over me.

I let myself slide back into that dark place just so the pain would stop. I cried for a while longer then slipped into what I hoped was a deep sleep from which I would not wake.











© 2013 Krystle Lewallen

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Hello and welcome to the young adult genre group! I look forward to getting into your book!

I think when you are writing in the first person you need to use conjunctions more often. It is how we talk in our head, and how your character would talk as well. The way it is written is too formal. Start with your first line - I haven't been here before - very few teens would ever say have not. The other issue to adjust is SPAG - you need more commas.

FANBOY - for, and, nor, but, or, yet - when ever you have two complete sentences with one of these words you need to separate with a comma. It also helps the reader take a breath and pause.
For example:
She says something else(,) but again it is wordless sounds(,) and then she turns and walks out of the room closing the door behind her.

Run on sentences - give the reader commas to show them where the breaks should be - this sentence is a mouthful with out them:
Mom always said they were too much responsibility(,) that she was(,) most certainly not going to add to her ever-growing list of things(,) that she was already responsible for.

Your story has good bones and strong characters - It just needs to flow better grammatically to optimally deliver the message to the reader.

Best of luck!

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 9 Years Ago

Krystle Lewallen

9 Years Ago

Thank you! I will certainly go back through and revise where necessary taking into consideration you.. read more
This is amazing, the raw emotion portrayed in the first part is stunning. I love your writing style and the spaces and not long paragraphs made it easy to follow and enjoyable to read. I just flew through this, i didn't have to stumble over grammar or spelling. Great job!

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 9 Years Ago

Krystle Lewallen

9 Years Ago

Perfect, that was what I was going for. It's hard to see these things when you are writing and readi.. read more
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This was really, really good! Aside from some tiny grammatical errors, I think it's close to perfect! You have a beautifully descriptive writing style

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 9 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I really, really liked it, especially the beginning part, when Katy is just waking up. It sounds so broken, so absolutely terrible, to be in that situation.

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 9 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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4 Reviews
Added on June 29, 2013
Last Updated on December 2, 2013
Tags: new adult, Christian, fiction, contemporary, coming-of-age


Krystle Lewallen
Krystle Lewallen

Fernandina Beach , FL

Author of Fractured Heart, book one in The Redemption Series. Available now at Amazon and Smashwords. more..