“I hope you’ll be happy. I care about you and your future.”

Yeah, right. All you care about is getting paid and having another success story in your records.

“This is really an amazing outcome for you. Don’t you agree, this is better than living in an orphanage?”

Maybe. But I’d rather still be living with my Dad.


I stopped my train of thought right there. It hurt too much.

“So, shall we meet your sister?”

I murmured something low and incoherent. She took it as a yes.

“Okay, here we are. Come on in, Mrs Brooks!”

The door opened before I had too much time to overthink the fact that her name wasn’t Allie Reed anymore – it was Mrs Brooks.

I turned my head around, and there she stood, framed in the doorway; looking as angelic and beautiful as I remember her, if a little older.

Her blonde hair was still long; it hung free down her back, tumbling like a golden waterfall, full of its own natural light. She was wearing clothes that were a little ‘mumsy-er’ than what I was used to seeing her in: black slacks, a blue blouse and grey slip-ons.

She looked at me. Her expression gave little away; was there a hint of sadness in her eyes, or was it just me?

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"It’s an honor and it’s a privilege to be here. To the guys and the younger guys that are getting an opportunity to come to their first [All-Star Game] … enjoy it because, you know, I can tell you that firsthand that this is a fun experience. You should share it with your family, your friends, remember it. You don’t know how many of these you’ll get an opportunity to play in. More importantly, remember every time you put your uniform on because trust me, it goes quickly."