This is something new I'm working on, as per usual. So I don't really know what to think of this, or where I'm going with this, or if it's any good and yeah.
Riley looked down at the bowl full of dry cornflakes and sighed. “Again? Seriously?” She wondered out loud, attempting to figure out how a family of four could go through a four litre bottle of milk in a day and a half. She took the bowl and poured the cornflakes into the bin instead of returning them back to the box, deciding to skip breakfast.
Her Mother came down the stairs as Riley was searching for the groceries list, cursing in Spanish and then wishing her daughter a good morning. “Mom, I think you forget that you’ve taught me fluent Spanish since I was adopted which was basically…” She pretended to think for a moment “birth, anyway we’re out of milk again, I was going to go and get the groceries” Riley told her Mum.
“How did we manage to run out of milk?” Her Mom wondered pulling a face somewhere between confused and disgusted, by Riley’s guess she’d probably planned to have the same breakfast she had. “Also, you need to pick up your Meds” She reminded her daughter.
Riley nodded, pulling the grocery list that had been stuck on the fridge the whole time. Grabbing a pen off the sideboard and scribbling ‘REMEMBER: ANTI-DEPRESSENTS’ in the remaining space. Remembering again, that she was the only person out of her Mother, Father and Brother who didn’t refer to them as her ‘Meds’.
She put the pen back, and headed upstairs – leaving a kiss on her Mothers cheek and running up the stairs to her room. On her way, she knocked on her Brother – Cristian’s door like she did whenever she woke up before him. He swore, his voice muffled by his pillow. “Definitely hung-over” She muttered to herself before turning into her room.
She picked up the first shirt and the first pair of jeans she saw, and threw them on – chances were that she wouldn’t see anyone she knew at the store, and if she did they wouldn’t say anything…the whole area thought she was boarder line psychotic because she took a few pills every day.
Talking of pills, the last two anti-depressants sat at the bottom of the bottle that Riley kept on her desk, she tipped them into her hand and stared at them for a moment. Part of her wanted to shove them in her pocket and throw them in the trash can on her way to the store, but she wasn’t going to get ‘better’ that way. She forced them down her throat, accompanied by the water from the glass that was still there from the night before.
She sat for another moment before gently brushing through her hair, the blonde curls that had been tight the day before fell loosely down her back – only to be tied up in a messy bun. Riley didn’t bother with make-up and left the room, giving Cristian’s door another knock and earning another line of profanities.
She ran down the stairs, and grabbed the shopping list and money her Mother had left out – shoving it into her pocket and shouting a good-bye to whoever was awake. Cristian appeared at the top of the stairs, his eyes still half shut. Riley turned round to look at him. “Just how smashed did you get last night?” She asked him, he’d asked her earlier on in the evening to leave the door open for him – knowing he’d be too drunk to open the door himself.
“Very” Cristian replied, Riley shook her head at her brother and laughed. He stumbled and managed the catch the family photo he knocked off the wall. The photo was more of a family joke, Riley was adopted by the Santiago’s a few weeks after she was born – she had been left with nothing apart from the name ‘Riley Austin’ and the dress she was left outside the hospital in.
The Santiago’s was a well-known Mexican family in the part of San Diego they resided, she was the odd-one out, her blonde hair and pale skin against their dark hair and tanned skin. Of course, they lost the good reputation when Riley ‘went off the rails’ as she once heard someone describe it.
The photo looked nothing like a family photo, it looked like Riley had just walked onto the set and they’d put up with her because they were too nice to say that she didn’t belong. Mr and Mrs Santiago stood together smiling, while Riley and Cristian sat back to back laughing.
Cristian adjusted the photo into its original position. “Go get some Anadin and coffee before Mum see’s you” Riley advised, picking up a hoodie from the back of the door and leaving the house. She put the hood up, but left it unzipped – and made her way to the store with her hands tucked into the pockets.
19 years and she still felt like she was going to get mugged in an area that wasn’t even dangerous.
It started to rain and she jogged the rest of the way – she just gone through the automatic doors of the shop when she collided with a dark haired boy. “Sorry!” She apologised suddenly, looking up at the taller, admittedly good-looking stranger.
“Its fine” He smiled, before walking off – leaving Riley somewhat stunned. She to the back of the store first, where the chemist was, she was told that the meds would be ready in about fifteen minutes. She set off around the store, only realising when she was stood in an empty aisle that she felt someone was watching her. Riley looked around repeatedly but there was never anyone there.
She walked around the store with the basket in one hand and the list in the other, reading off the items she still had to buy out loud to herself. Even when she was in an aisle full of people she couldn’t shake the feeling that she was being watched. Suddenly, the boy she had crashed into appeared by her side.
For a moment they both stood side by side, before he turned to her. “Hey, do you know where the milk aisle is?” He asked. “I just moved here, my name’s Blaine”
He spoke quickly, and sounded nervous. “I’ll show you, this place can get confusing – I was away for a few years and I came back and felt like I’d never stepped foot in it before” She said, as she lead him to the aisle, Blaine laughed. “There we go” She said, pointing to the milk.
He thanked her and smiled. “I should really go” She lied, before spinning round on her heel and heading to the checkout. She kept looking behind her as the cashier scanned her items – Blaine stared blankly at the milk. There’s definitely something strange about him she thought, he turned away from milk and looked at her. Riley wanted to look away, but she handed the money over to the cashier with her eyes glued to Blaine – they were meters away from each other, but she could see sympathy in his eyes.
But why sympathy?
He smiled and walked away, she turned back to the girl – not much older than Riley’s 19 year old self who was asking if she needed help with her packing. Again, Riley was left with the feeling that someone was watching her. She shook it off as she packed the groceries, but still jogged home feeling more paranoid than usual, looking straight ahead and not daring looking down any side alleys.
Riley dumped the groceries on the table, right next to them was a bright green sticky note. ‘Emergency with the cat, we’ll be home in a few hours – Love Mom’. It must have been serious if everyone had to go, but Mrs Santiago’s over-sized cursive left no room to say what had happened to the family cat – Bartholomew. Riley shrugged, and reached into her hoodie pocket for her keys, but instead pulling out a small card that she was sure wasn’t there before she left.
You might want to talk. Blaine.
He’d left his phone number underneath, Riley stared at the card quizzically. How did he even sneak it into her pocket? Without thinking she picked up her phone and typed in the number, holding it up to her ear.
We’re sorry to inform you that this number is currently busy
“Give me your number, but don’t answer your phone. Smart” Riley mumbled to herself. She put Blaine’s number in her back jeans pocket and laid down on the sofa. The tiredness came too quickly after closing her eyes, she thought about how one day sleepless nights and nightmares were going to be the death of her.
Suddenly and all at once, the feeling of being watched returned once again. She laid there trying to mentally make it go away for almost ten minutes with her eyes shut before she realised the only way she’d feel safe is if the TV was on – and of course, the remote was on the other side of the living room.
She lifted herself up, but before she opened her eyes – she was pushed back down. Not roughly, it was gentle. She wanted to scream, but a cloth was placed tightly over her mouth. Within seconds it was completely dark.