The streets of London were quiet this afternoon, the roads were clear as Emma Smith walked down the newly Concreted road; she was about to open the garden gate when she stopped suddenly outside her house. She seemed worried for a moment and was looking around cautiously as if she wanted to check that nobody was following her.
She took tentative steps and opened the front door quietly, her mum would be home by now and she didn’t want to disturb her and cause another row.
Last night she had made the mistake of asking her mum for some money to buy some new socks as her black ones had holes in them. Her mother had been thinking of herself as usual and had just yelled at Emma to go away as she was watching TV, since then she had kept out of her Mums way and had to fend for herself, as usual.
Emma walked quietly up to her room; she was just about to go into her room when she saw her mum’s new dress on the bed in her mum and dad’s room. Emma loved the dress and couldn’t help going into the room to have a sneaky look at it; she ran her fingers down the material and had a look in the wardrobe, there was a chest of draws next to it and Emma couldn’t help but look in there as well. She was just about to close the draw when she saw a folder with her name on it, cautiously she took it out and opened the folder; Emma looked at the contents for a moment and then dropped it as if it was on fire. The papers were no ordinary papers, they were adoption papers.
Emma stood there for a moment just looking at the folder on the floor, and then she picked it up and ran to her room.
Shirley looked up at the ceiling for a second, Emma was home. That girl had just been a brat this week and she wasn’t going to trouble herself for the likes of a spoilt attention-seeking teenager. Shirley was just about to shout up to her when Laura walked into the room; Laura always made Shirley smile, she was like a little copy of her and she was brilliant.
The story is that Emma wasn’t her own daughter; when Laura was two Shirley and George decided to have another baby, the week after Shirley found out that she was having another girl and she decided to call her Emma. George was delighted and couldn’t wait for his daughter to be born; months passes and Shirley finally gave birth to Emma.
Emma was a little angel, she had very fair blonde curls and little pink cheeks, and she was simply perfect. The family couldn’t have been happier, Shirley’s face lit up every time she saw Laura cuddling Emma; they were just a perfect happy family. Or were they?
On the 2nd April 1997, Shirley decided to go out and get some baby milk after they had run out. The weather was bad but still strapped Emma into here baby chair and left Laura with the neighbour, the weather got worse and Shirley could hardly see anything. Suddenly a lorry came out from nowhere and Shirley had to swerve to avoid it, the car hit a speed barrier and it skidded down a hill and crashed into a tree. The lorry diver had seen what had happened and called 999, with in minutes to ambulance arrived, Shirley had a broken arm but they had to air lift Emma to St. Helens hospital. Emma’s condition was critical and was given 24 hours to survive; she had four broken ribs and a cracked skull.
A week later Emma was on a life support machine and wasn’t making any progress, the nurse told the Smith family that Emma wasn’t going to improve, Shirley held her baby girl as the nurse turned the machine off, Emma passed away at 9:00pm on a cold Saturday evening.
Shirley never really got over the death of her daughter; she would always do the same routine as if Emma was still alive, she would warm a bottle of milk up and get the buggy out, then she would pack a baby bag with nappies and toys for a day out. It was only until George got up and had to remind her that the memories wouldn’t go away, days passed and Shirley got paler and thinner; George got a doctor to see her and Shirley was diagnosed with depression.
It wasn’t until George saw an article about a girl that needed a home did he realise that maybe it would do Shirley good to have another baby in the house to take her mind off the traumatic events. Laura was four by then and she missed not having a sister so George went to see the baby.
But when George went to see the child it was as if history was repeating itself; the girl was like a copy of Emma, she was thinner and paler but still had the same look and something that shocked George completely, she had the same name.
Adoption was a hard process but at least Shirley wasn’t at home, they brought her to the house (she was two years old) and finally George was approved and was able to take the child home.
A couple of weeks later George went to see Shirley in hospital and took Emma with him; he left her with a nurse and told Shirley what he had done, at first she didn’t say anything but then said “she’s exactly like Emma?”
George nodded and went to get Emma, “she has the same name, isn’t that weird?”
Shirley looked at the baby and then started yelling.
“How could you! She is not my daughter, send her back!” Shirley wouldn’t even look at her but George was persistent, “she’s a sign (George was Christian) she is exactly like Emma and it’s like we were meant to have her, I did it behind your back as I knew you wouldn’t want her. I want her and Laura needs a sister”.
Shirley looked at him and then looked at the toddler; she picked her up and then held her close, a second later she put her back down and picked up her bag.
“The nurses said I could go home today so are we going or not?”
George took Emma and followed his wife out of the hospital, he hoped she would make progress with Emma and it would help her, how wrong he was.
Shirley was fine with Emma at first but as time went she seemed to be giving a lot of attention to Laura but Emma was left unchanged and unfed, George didn’t want Emma taken off them so he did everything for her.
As Emma got older Shirley would occasionally take Emma out and give her cuddles but a lot of the time she just yelled at her and told her to go away, Laura also fought with Emma a lot but never told Emma she was adopted as she knew.
And that was why Shirley neglected Emma a lot; she would tell Emma to cook her own tea now she was thirteen, they argued a lot and Emma would behave badly to get her Mum’s attention but that would always lead to bigger fights.
Shirley favoured Laura (who was now fifteen) and would buy Laura new things but just give Emma a load of Laura’s old things. Emma now knew why, she wasn’t her real daughter.
Emma bounded down the stairs as Shirley shouted her name; she tried to act normal and didn’t want her Mum to suspect anything, there had been too many rows and Emma just wanted a nice quiet evening and no hassle.
She walked into the living room and found Laura talking to her Mum; Laura looked up and scowled as Emma came in and sat down on the chair opposite them. Shirley looked at her and asked “what trouble have you been in today?”
Emma tried not to look hurt but she couldn’t help looking offended. “I got ten out of ten in my maths today and finally finished the book we were reading in English, I was the first to finish”.
Shirley looked at her as if she was lying and told her to go make her a cup of tea, Emma got up to go make it but Laura barged into her and pushed her out of the way, Emma yelled and instinctively pushed Laura back; Shirley got up and grabbed Emma by the wrist, “don’t you dare hurt your sister, you have done nothing but cause trouble this week and if you cant be civil then you will just have to stay in your room, now go up stairs and stay there!”
Emma backed away in astonishment and quickly ran up the stairs, she was shocked at her mum’s out burst and started to cry when she heard her soothing Laura in favouritism.
She ran up to her room in resentment and lay on her bed; the folder was lying on it so she picked it up and read through it properly. It had pictures of a little baby with a blonde haired women, the name of the women was Sue Jenks, her mother.
Emma hugged the photo to her chest and looked around her room; everything was Laura’s and only a few personal possessions belonged to her. In a rage she got a pair of scissors out of her draw and started to cut all of the clothes up; then she got one of Laura’s old lipsticks (Laura didn’t use it as it wouldn’t wash off) and scrawled the words ‘evil witch’ on the mirror.
Soon everything was broken; Emma had smashed an old photo of Shirley and George into pieces and had carved her birth mothers initials onto her desk. Shirley didn’t bring her any tea and left her till night time, she had locked Emma’s door but didn’t know that Emma had finally found a spare key, she crept downstairs and jumped over the bottom step that creaked; there was an aroma of chicken pie in the kitchen but there was none left. Emma made herself some beans on toast and nicked a box of French chocolates from Shirley’s secret supply; once she had eaten she cleaned her teeth and got ready for bed, then she locked herself back in and fell asleep as if nothing had happened.
The next day Shirley didn’t get up, George had left early for work and was totally oblivious to last night’s events and Laura had gone to university with her mates so Emma had to sort herself out which she was quite used to doing.
She had found an empty bottle of wine in the front room that indicated that Shirley had been drinking so she wasn’t likely to get up for ages; Emma got herself a banana and some sandwiches for lunch bit didn’t bother getting breakfast in case Shirley did get up early and looked in her room while she was still there.
The school bus peeped its horn outside her house; Emma didn’t really want to go to school and since it was a Wednesday and the lessons were rubbish it meant that Amelia (her best friend) would be skiving off too.
Emma ignored the bus and grabbed £50 out of Shirley’s purse which was lying on the kitchen table, she could go round the shops in London for the day and she also had £50 that George had given her for some history trip to a theatre outside London city centre. She would rather have a day out with her mates then go see some old drivel about hamlet for two hours.
As soon as she got to the train station she rang Amelia to come and meet her; Amelia didn’t take long and arrived with two boys, one was Amelia’s boyfriend and the other was a boy named Zak who Emma liked very much.
The teenagers got on the train and started to talk about Emma’s Mum; Emma told them lies and said that Shirley had hit for her for no reason and locked her in her room (which wasn’t exactly a lie) Amelia hugged her friend and said she should call the police. Emma felt at ease for once and was glad that she could talk to her friends about her so called mother; but disaster struck when the train pulled in to the station.
Emma had gotten off the train and was chatting to Zak when she heard an angry voice beside her; “what the hell are you doing young lady?!” Shirley said and grabbed her daughters arm and twisted it hard.
Emma cried out loud, her mum must have gotten up well before she had and gone out; Shirley pulled her out of public view and slapped her really hard round the face, then she pushed her onto the train and dug her sharp nails into Emma’s arm as the train started to move, Shirley kept on digging her nails in the whole journey.
When they got back home Shirley went to get George (who had come home early from work) and told him what had happened. George looked at his daughter for some kind of explanation but didn’t do anything and just sent her to her room.
George came up to her room that night and looked at the nail marks and her red cheek where Shirley had hit her.
“She was really hard on you weren’t she princess?” George said as he held his sobbing daughter “but mums just a bit poorly today and you were really naughty taking her money and going off like that, so we decided that your not allowed to go out for the rest of this week and I’m going to meet you and take you into school so you don’t go off again, understand?”
Emma nodded and pulled the quilt covers over her head, it was clear she didn’t want to talk any more so George left her to sleep.
The next morning George got her up early to take her to school; Emma skipped breakfast again and got in the car in anger. George took her straight into school and got a teacher to stay with her until registration so she didn’t got out, Emma felt like a criminal and was just glad that Shirley wasn’t taking her to school, she would have held her hand and make sure that she was embarrassed in front of the other kids. Once Emma didn’t show Shirley her bad report when Emma was nine and she had dressed her in a horrible snowman’s outfit for non-uniform day and all the other children had laughed at her and pushed her in the playground, when Emma told Shirley she had laughed and told her that it was her own fault and she was a nasty, stupid girl and deserved every bad thing in the world.
Emma remembered this throughout the day and believed every word she said as the day went from bad to worse; Amelia’s boyfriend had broken up with her as he said he didn’t want to be with someone who hangs around with a freak so Amelia had stopped been friends with her because she blamed Emma for what had happened.
George stuck to his word and brought her home again, Shirley had a dozen tasks for her and shouted at her for everything that seemed wrong. She also went into Emma’s room at last and slapped her again for the damage she had done; Emma had had enough of the treatment she was getting and hit back the second time. This made Shirley even angrier and started yelling bad things; “You don’t deserve to even speak!” she shouted and locked her in her room again.
Emma stayed into her room for a long time and didn’t even bother getting something to eat; she sat down at her desk and stroked a photo of her and her granddad. He was dead now but always used to call her his little princess and she would stay with him a lot. Emma remembered the last time she had seen her Grandpa, it had been a year ago and he had taken her to a new theme park and bought her lots of presents. He told her that she was very special and that he loved her very much; it was the best day of her life and she remembered it always.
Emma then remembered what her mum said about not even deserving the right to speak; she thought it over in her head, did she not even deserve to live?
She pulled the covers over her head as the door opened, it was Laura.
“You should be in an orphanage, you’re not my sister and dad only got you because you looked like her!”
“Looked like who?” Emma hissed through gritted teeth, Laura sneered and whispered in her ear, “my dead sister”.
Emma froze and lay very still as Laura walked out, she was so shocked that she was shaking, the right thing to do was to stop talking as everything she said seemed to make everyone unhappy, after all she didn’t deserve anything.
The neighbours looked out as an ambulance drove down the street; George had found Emma on the landing in a state of shock and had immediately called for a doctor, she wouldn’t speak to anyone and it was just like the last time she stopped talking, Emma had been in this state a year ago and only started again when he called a physiatrist, nobody had known what had made her stopped talking but now the police had made enquiries to see if Emma had been neglected in anyway, George had told her that she had been a bit troubled lately but didn’t tell them about Shirley having depression, he hadn’t told her about Emma yet as he knew she wouldn’t care and would just be angry with her again, and the fact that the police thought she was being neglected was going to make her kick off.
The nurse was talking softly to Emma but she didn’t respond; George was worried she might have lost her voice but the nurse told him that there were no mental or physical problems.
“Emma seems fine i