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Weak and Broken

Prologue

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Prologue

Dying To Be Alive

December 24th, 1997

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

 

            Joni tucked the covers around Kaitlynne’s thin frame and walked over to the door, switching the light off. She closed the door behind her as she left the room. She knew her mother and father would be home soon to place the gifts under the tree. As she made her way down the hall, she sighed to herself, smiling. Christmas was her favorite holiday of the year. Okay, so maybe her birthday was better, but only because the day was totally centered around her. She laughed softly to herself as she thought back to all her birthdays. Cakes were splattered all over faces or gift bags were stolen by dogs. Sometimes her birthdays were just downright chaotic. It was so much fun!

            Joni made her way into the living room and curled into a little ball on the couch, turning the news on. Seeing that it was on the weather for the moment, she turned the TV on mute and picked up her acoustic guitar from beside the couch. She started to play a soft tune. When she looked at the TV again, her breath caught in her throat. There, on the screen, was a silver Cadillac CTS. The same car her parents owned. The same car her parents had driven to the store to have the gifts wrapped. She gently set her guitar on the floor in front of the couch, turning the sound back on.

            “The bodies have been identified as John and Lynn Donnahue, fifty-two and forty-nine years of age. They leave behind two teenage daughters, sixteen year old Joni, and twelve year old Kaitlynne,” the lady holding the microphone announced.

            Joni bit her bottom lip as tears rolled down her cheeks. She waited until the street was announced before she went back into Kaitlynne’s room to wake her up. When Kaitlynne finally gave in and woke up, she looked up at Joni to see tears on her face. Kaitlynne sat up in her bed and pulled Joni into a hug. Joni told her everything she knew. They got dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, grabbing their winter coats before they got into Joni’s robin egg blue, ’64, Mustang hardtop convertible and drove to the site of the accident. Joni got out and met Kaitlynne at the back of the car, holding her sister close. They walked over to the fireman standing by the car.

            “Girls, you need to get back,” he warned.

            “No, you don’t understand,” Joni rebutted, “We’re Joni and Kaitlynne Donnahue. The daughters of the victims.”

            The fireman stopped what he was doing and turned to face them. Tears were in his eyes. He told them what had happened. An eighteen-wheeler slipped on some ice in the road and lost control, flipping over. Their parents had tried to dodge the trailer as it slid, but they had lost control and flipped the car as well, killing the both of them on impact. The fireman told them that there had been some packages in the car that had Joni and Kaitlynne written on them. He informed them that most of the stuff wasn’t in any condition to be salvaged from the wreckage, but there had been two rather small boxes that hadn’t been destroyed. He handed the boxes to their rightful owners. Joni’s to her and Kaitlynne’s to her. They opened the boxes to find silver necklaces. The heart on each was broken in half. Joni had one half and Kaitlynne had the other. They looked expensive, considering that diamonds outlined the edge of the heart and there was one on the side of each so that when you placed them together, there was a whole diamond right in the middle of the heart.

            With the information and their only gifts, Joni and Kaitlynne walked over to the car; the fireman had allowed them to. Their parents had been pulled out already and were being sent to some awful place where they would be prepared for their burial. Kaitlynne handed Joni her jacket and kneeled to the ground, looking inside the wrecked car that was flipped upside down. She was just small enough to crawl through the window and grab the shiny particle that had caught her eye. She crawled back out the window and stood up looking at Joni.

            “What did you find, Kaity?” Joni asked her sister.

            “Mom’s wedding ring,” she replied, looking up at Joni as she opened her hand to show her older sister the ring.

Chapter One