Keeping 13 by Chloe Walsh EPUB & PDF – eBook Details
- Full Book Name: Keeping 13
- Author Name: Chloe Walsh
- Book Genre: Contemporary, Contemporary Romance, Fiction, New Adult, Romance
- ISBN #
- Date of Publication: 2018-11-26
- File Name: PDF / EPUB
- PDF / EPUB File Size: 2 MB
HI M OR US
SHA N N O N
“Make a choice, Mam,” Joey said. “Him or us?”
Numb to the bone, I sat on the rickety chair at our kitchen table, with a
tea-towel pressed to my cheek, and held my breath for two reasons.
First, my father was less than four feet away from me, and that
particular piece of knowledge caused my body to switch into shutdown.
Second, it hurt to breathe.
Dropping the blood-soaked towel on the table, I twisted sideways and
tried to rest my side against the back of the chair, only to groan in agony
when a surge of pain coursed through my body.
My flesh felt like it had been doused in gasoline and set on fire.
Every inch of my body was burning, screaming out in protest every
time I inhaled too deeply. I was in trouble, I realized. Something was
seriously wrong with me and still, I remained exactly where I was, exactly
where Joey had placed me, without an ounce of fight left inside of me.
This is bad.
This is really bad, Shannon.
The sounds of my little brothers’ sobs and sniffles as they huddled
behind Joey were almost too much to bear.
I couldn’t look at them, though.
If I did, I knew I would break.
Instead, I focused my attention on Joey, taking strength from his bravery
as he stared our parents down and demanded more.
As he tried to save us from a life that none of us were getting out of.
“Joey, if you just calm down for a moment –” Mam began to say, but
my brother didn’t let her finish.
Wholly enraged, Joey erupted like a volcano right there in the middle of
our rundown kitchen. “Don’t you fucking dare try and talk your way out of
this!” Pointing an accusatory finger at our mother, he snarled, “Just do the
right thing for once in your fucking life and put him out.”
I could hear the desperation in his voice, the last sparks of his faith in
her fading out fast, as he implored her to hear him.
Mam just sat on the kitchen floor, her gaze flickering over each one of
us, but never once moving to go to us.
No, she remained exactly where she was.
By his side.
I knew she was afraid of him, I understood what it felt like to be
petrified of the man in our kitchen, but she was the grown up. She was
supposed to be the adult, the mother, the protector, not the eighteen-year-old
boy whose shoulders that role had fallen onto.
“Joey,” she whispered, giving him a pleading look. “Can we just –”
“Him or us,” Joey repeated the same question over and over, tone
growing colder. “Him or us, Mam?”
Him or us.
Three words that should have held more meaning and importance than
any other question I’d ever heard. Problem was, I knew in my heart that
whatever answer was given, whatever lie she told herself, and us, the end
result would be the same.
It was always the same.
I think in this moment my brothers realized that, too.
Joey certainly did.
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