Prologue

            Cinnamon and blood. The warm spicy aroma once associated with cake and cookies mixed with the metallic wrongness until the once bright room blurred and bile burned its way up the back of her throat.
            Sudden pain in her head broke through the dizziness, and when she reached one shaking hand to her forehead, she realized that somehow she had ended up on the floor. She immediately pushed up to her feet only to stumble backwards, hitting the counter hard with her shoulders before sliding down the smooth cupboards to the cold tile. The shaking made the dizziness worse, and the quivering weakness of her muscles made the fear spread through her like blood.
            The reminder brought the smell back so strongly that she would have whimpered if she’d had the strength. There was something… Her shattered mind didn’t want to remember, so the images came like flashes of light through a murky haze. Unwillingly, she turned her head to the right and the pooling horror lying there. Tears and bile swelled as her small body shuddered. Gasping breaths racked her as she spun back and desperately tried to crawl away from the desecration of her childhood.
            Every inch was a struggle as she forced trembling muscles to reach and pull. She didn’t hear the footsteps or the hissing curse, but the warm drops down her face made her raise her head and whimper.
            “Mom.”

Continue to the next chapter…


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