Existing front coverExcerpt from "Existing"

“You can’t say anything, not one word.”
“Okay, I won’t.”
“Not a word!”
“I promise.”
“Okay. Remember, you promised.”
Crystal looked into her sister’s eyes to be sure she was telling the truth. Taylor didn’t seem serious enough, but then what could she expect from a 12-year-old?
“And why can’t we say anything?” Taylor asked.
“Because they don’t really want us. They are just taking us because they have to.”
“They don’t have to. Mom said we were probably going to live with a foster family before she knew about them.”
“They are like a foster family! And don’t call her ‘Mom!’ If Tammy was really our mom, she would have kept us!”
“She couldn’t keep us with all of her kids too. It was too many.”
“You really listened to her, didn’t you? We are just too different to stay with them. Well, that’s why you can’t talk to these guys, because they will just try to confuse you.”
“You mean we can’t EVER talk to them?”
“Never. You promised!”
“I know, I know! I won’t.”
“You girls need to put your seats in the upright position now, we’re getting ready to land shortly,” the flight attendant told them.
“Yes, ma’am,” Taylor said, as she and Crystal obeyed.
This was the first time they had ever been on a plane. Crystal looked around so she could memorize the sights, the sounds, the feel of the plane. She doubted they would ever have the opportunity to fly again. She was not looking forward to landing, and what would come after that; in fact, she was not looking forward to anything at all. What good could come out of flying across the country to live with people shecouldn’t remember, who didn’t want them anyway?
“Maybe they’ll be really nice,” Taylor said.
“If they are, it’s only because they have to be.”
“No, they don’t.”
“Well, it doesn’t matter. We don’t have anything to say to them.”
“How will we know them?”
“I think Mo—Tammy sent them a picture of us.”
“But why would they take us if they don’t have to? They’re not relatives or anything.”
“I don’t know why, but do you really think anyone would want us? Look at us! Everyone on this plane is white, and we are mixed.”
“Daddy always said we were golden brown.”
“I told you not to talk about him!”
“But I--”
“Not a word! The plane is about to land.”
The girls were silent for the rest of the flight. This was how Crystal liked it – silent. She didn’t want to explain anything to anybody and she didn’t want to hear what anyone else had to say about anything. Nobody knew her, what was inside of her, and nobody wanted to know. Nobody cared, and she didn’t need anybody bothering her.

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