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Authors: Lara Henley

The UnKnown (A Novel)

BOOK: The UnKnown (A Novel)
13.16Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub


The Unknown



By Lara Henley



Copyright © 2013 Lara Henley

The Unknown, A Novel

Edited by: Tara Sander-Vanover

Formatted by: Danielle Blanchard

Cover Models: Courtney Boyett & Willis Totten

Cover Design: Deanna Hatemaker


All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission from the author, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.


This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons living or dead, is entirely coincidental.




Table of Contents




Chapter 1


Chapter 2


Chapter 3


Chapter 4


Chapter 5


Chapter 6


Chapter 7


Chapter 8


Chapter 9


Chapter 10


Chapter 11


Chapter 12


Chapter 13


Chapter 14


Chapter 15


Chapter 16


Chapter 17


Chapter 18


Chapter 19


Chapter 20


Chapter 21


Chapter 22


Chapter 23


Chapter 24


Chapter 25


Sneak Peak into
The Revealed


Follow the Author




First and foremost I would like to give all honor and glory to God for taking me through this journey and to be able to share all my dreams with you. I would like to give a warm thanks to my loving husband for always backing me in this ongoing process. I have to give a shout out to my best author friend Tasha Gwartney for helping through this book process, without her there would be no book. She has truly been my saving grace.
To Tabby, Dwight, Tara S, Tara G, and Tina who endured my crazy through writing this book. Thank you for your support.
Thank you to my street team for working so hard to help push my book and letting the world know it is here.  And not last and not least to my parents, family and friends who have always given me the strength to live out my dreams.



Chapter 1




I was in tears while packing my bag. Where would I go? I had nothing. No money, no job, nothing. Being a ward of the state completely tore my world apart. My parents died in a tragic car accident when I was twelve years old, and no other family members wanted me. I wiped the tears from my eyes and lifted my suitcase off the bed. I looked at the room that I had known for the past six years. It became my cave, my constant in this miserable world. The stark white walls were all but faded to yellowing in color, and the bed was a simple twin bed. We were never allowed to put pictures on the walls. It was just me, the bed and the walls. Although the room was nothing to look at, it was my safe haven. I took a deep breath, sighed and headed out the door to the world unknown.

Buses and cars flew past me as I walked down the long stretch of highway with my bag in hand. I was headed east. I knew I had an aunt that lived in Florida that chose to ignore me my entire life. I called her a few times to let her know I was on my way, but she never answered. So, here I was. Eighteen years old and completely alone in this big ole world. In the distance I saw a little diner tucked safely away from the road and I headed towards it. I needed to call my aunt again. I knew I wouldn’t make it all the way to Florida with only the one hundred and fifty dollars that the state gave me. How did they expect anyone to begin their life on that? Sighing, I continued to walk. When I finally made it to the diner I thought it was cute. It looked like one of those fifties joints you see in the movies; the ones with the neon pink signs and big blue old caddies sitting in the front. I stepped inside and was warped back in time. I walked towards an empty booth, set my bag down and wondered what was next for me.

When I was little I had a fear of flying. My mother took me on my first plane trip when I was ten years old. She told me to squeeze her hand every time I got scared. I was scared now more than I would allow myself to accept. I wished she was here for me to squeeze her hand. When my parents passed away, I thought for sure Aunt Silvia would take me in. She didn’t. She said she couldn’t afford to take me in. What type of aunt abandons her own family in a time of great need? I was so angry with her. When she told me I was going into the foster care system I gave her a black eye. I hoped she would forgive me and let me stay.

My counselor at the house taught me how to deal with my anger. She gave me techniques on how to cope, and I still used them. When I first got to the house, I was fighting almost every day. I wanted people to leave me alone. I didn’t care what others thought of me. The pain I was feeling made me want to steadily beat the crap out of someone. So that is exactly what I did. I mean, who could blame me for being angry? I was twelve years old with no parents, and the only family I had didn’t want me. I wanted my life back the way it was before I became an orphan. I loved my mother and father very much. They loved me unconditionally and vice versa. My only two saving graces at the house were my room with the lock on it and Lucy. Lucy was a year older than me and she took me under her wing. She would fight anyone who bothered me. The kids would call us the TWINS. We were mean bitches, but we didn’t care. Often times, we would sneak into each other’s rooms and talk to each other about dreams and what we would do when we got out of the program. She wanted to be a social worker to help kids like us find permanent homes. I, on the other hand, wanted to be a teacher. I wanted to help shape young minds. I missed Lucy very much and I hoped that I would get to see her again.

The waitress slapping the table brought me back to present times.  She was a young-looking lady who appeared to be in her mid to upper thirties. “What can I get you to drink?” The waitress, May, asked. Her tag was ratty, but I could still make the name out.

“Water, please,” I said pathetically.

“You will have to order more than water to stay in here. We get plenty of drifters that come here and don’t buy anything,” she said with irritation in her voice.

“I will. I need water for now. I’ll look over the menu while you get it.”

She tapped her pen on the table then turned and walked away before looking at me one last time. I pulled the menu from between the salt and pepper shakers. I had to get something cheap. I needed to make my money stretch because I didn’t know where my next meal would be coming from. I mulled over the menu and decided on the cheapest item, which was grilled cheese and fries. I could eat half now and save the rest for later. When May returned she looked more irritated than she did before.

“What will you be having, Deary?” What was her problem? I had done nothing to offend this woman.

“I’ll have the grilled cheese and fries.” I decided to ignore her rudeness and continue with my plans to find my aunt.

“Fine.” She took the piece of paper she was writing on and ripped if off the pad. “You order will be up shortly.”

“Thank you.” I turned my head from her so I wouldn’t cop an attitude.

My temper had been really short these days and I was on the road to recovery. I had been a nervous wreck since Susie, my case worker, told me back in July that I would have to leave at the end of September because I had aged out of the system. I hoped my aunt would let me in until I could get on my feet. Slamming a plate down in front of me, May snapped me out of my thoughts.

“What the hell is your problem?” I said as I brushed a few fries off my lap that spilled over.

“Nothing!” She snapped at me.  “I’m just having a really bad day. I am truly sorry. I will pay for this. Don’t worry about it.” She stalked off before I could say anything more.

When I peered down at the food, it looked disheveled, just like my life. I thought about the letter that Lucy had written me. She was now living in Florida. She told me I could go there if I couldn’t get ahold of my aunt. I pulled the crinkled letter from my pocket. I’ve read this letter more than a hundred times, but I kept reading it. It gave me hope for my life. Maybe my life would mean something. I opened the letter and saw it was indeed addressed to me.

Dear Misty,

My love, the world is a grey place. The illusion that everything is black and white is truly a façade. When I first left, I was so scared and lonely. I didn’t have anywhere to go. Then, I remembered you told me about your aunt in Florida, so I headed east. I am here now and it is beautiful and peaceful. There is hope for a new life. I have met the love of my life and working towards a future I never thought I would have. You know where I come from, and I never imagined I deserved more. But we do, Misty, we do. Please come to me when you get out. I will help you, and you will see there is more to life than what we have lived. Keep your head up kiddo. We are not doomed to the fate that we thought we were. We are the masters of our destiny. Keep faith that God will see you through to your true path in life. My email and address are attached. Please feel free to write me back. I am here for you, Misty. You are not alone.



The letter impacted me when I received it a month ago. I folded the letter and stuck it back into my pocket. I dipped two fries in ketchup and shoved them into my mouth. The taste of them was salty, old, and cold. I couldn’t complain because I wasn’t paying, and it was something to eat. I finished half the meal and asked for a box to take the remainder to eat later. The waitress brought the box, and she still had an attitude. I thanked her nicely and asked where the nearest payphone was. I knew in this day and age everyone had a cell phone, but I had no job. I couldn’t afford it. I thought that I might take Lucy up on her offer if I couldn’t get a hold of my aunt. May pointed over to the corner of the diner and I headed that way.

I pulled a napkin from my pocket and wiped the receiver of the phone off before dialing the number collect. While waiting for the phone to connect, I saw the hottest guy walk through the door.  He had dark brown hair and piercing blue eyes that locked on me when he entered. I blushed immediately and turned away to face the phone. I forgot what I was doing. I heard a “Hello” come from the receiver.

“Hello, Aunt Silvia? It’s Misty.” I was trying to not sound panicked. I hadn’t seen Aunt Silvia since my parents passed away. She said at the time she couldn’t afford to take any kids into her home. I knew it pained her. She was the kindest woman and was a couple years older than my mother. My father was an only child and his parents had died when I was five. I didn’t really remember them.

“Misty, is that really you? I have been trying to find you. I haven’t had any luck.” She sounded so bad that she left me to fend for myself. I didn’t know whether to believe her. I had been in the same place for the past six years.

“Yes, it’s me. Listen! I have aged out of the state system, and I need a place to stay until I land on my feet. I can get a job and help with bills. I have no one else to turn to and I’m really scared.” I heard my aunt start to sniffle.

“Of course you can come and stay. I should have never let you go into the system. I am so sorry,” she sobbed.

“It’s ok, Aunt Silvia. Let’s put it behind us and move forward. I can be there in a day or two. May I have your address?”

“I’m so sorry. Do you need money? I can wire you some.” I looked around me. There was no place to pick up money.

“No, I’m ok. I just need the address and I will see you in a couple of days.” She gave me the address and we said our goodbyes. I hung the phone up and laid my head on the receiver. I had no idea how I was going to get to her. I grabbed a bottle of water out of the cooler. I put it up on the counter and took out the money to pay.

BOOK: The UnKnown (A Novel)
13.16Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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