I stood silently in the middle of the doorway glaring down at the shadow of my father who continued to swear and rant, throwing empty bottles at the already ruined walls. I could hear his bitch of a girlfriend scream and then a slap, then a thud, and I knew he had thrown her again. Why she stayed with him was beyond me. Why, I stayed with him was far beyond me.
I turned and stared at completion in the mirror. Black eye, check. Cut above the other eyebrow, and bleeding, Check. Stomach grumbling, check. Worn and raggedy clothes, check. I looked like and felt like a street rat already, and I didn’t even live on the street. What was more was I was freezing.
I looked around my bare bedroom, and finally, threw my things into my book bag. A few clothes, books, the money I had stolen from my dad earlier, then slammed my bedroom door and locked it. He wouldn’t know I was gone for days. I slipped opened my bedroom window after putting my jacket on, I slide out the window and down the pipe, landing easily behind the bush.
My dad still swearing and throwing things about. I put my cd player on and began to walk away from the house. I cringed when I heard another scream and crash. Saw a neighbor’s light go on, and the old woman across the street, stepping outside and talking quietly to her husband. Her husband flicked opened his cell phone. I knew they were calling the cops. Good! I hoped they dragged my dad’s ass into jail for disrupting the neighborhood.
With my stomach growling I trudged out of my neighborhood and into the local McDonalds. Picked up a burger and fries with the few dollars I had been able to steal from my dad, and then trudged back onto the road. The streets were surprisingly less noisy then I thought they’d be. I had no idea what I was going to do now that I was a 15 year old run away, but I was sure I would think of something. I couldn’t get a job. But I was a crafty thief sometimes.
I sighed and plopped down on the edge of the river walkway, with my burger, fries and soft drink. It was a warmer night outside. For once. Maybe things would look up for me. I knew one thing for sure, I wasn’t going back home. My dad and the cops could kick my ass and throw me into Jail before I went backed there. They could put me into foster care for all I gave a damn. But I would certainly rather live out here in the streets then in Foster Care or jail or with my dad.
I bit into the burger. Greasy goodness, and leaned up against a damp crate. My cd player still going, yep, things were gonna get better. Or worst. But at least, I didn’t have to hear my dad swearing and worry about him punching me again. Hell, I could take a punch and throw one back if I wanted too now. I was officially a runaway. Something inside of me leaped. Freedom!