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v.3 Simple Twist of Fate...
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F I V E  B Y  F I V E
v.2 Five By Five
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C H A O S  B L E E D S
v.1 Chaos Bleeds
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--One Split Second--

     I just stood there, staring at the charred remains. Last night was imprinted into my mind for eternity. I had to bite my bottom lip to keep from crying. So much had happened in the past week.
     My dad had lost his job, and was always at the bar, drinking to drown his sorrows. My mom was always busy with work, and her friends, so I was always stuck looking after my brothers, Joshua and Dean.
     I held my brothers close to me, and squeezed them tight.
     "We're going to make it through this, you guys, even without Mom and Dad," I said as calmly as I could.
     Joshua, being only five, didn't quite understand. "What I meant is, that we're going to have to depend on each other, because Mom and Dad are too busy to care," I said, strong hating in my voice as I spat out the last part.
     "Hailey, where are we going to sleep tonight? It's freezing out here," Dean said, shivering.
     "I don't know, Dean. Maybe one of the neighbors will be able to talk us in for the night."
     "But what about Mom and Dad?"
     "Dean, you have to understand this. We're probably going to be alone in this tonight. Dad's going to be at the bar very late as he usually is, and Mom said she was going to be with him, partying." Sometimes, Dean, at the age of ten, didn't want to listen to the bad stuff.

     That night we stayed with the Millers. They were a nice young couple, who was always glad to help, for they understood our situations with our parents.
     I tossed and turned all night, nightmares filling my mind.
     I was there, watching it all. The slip on the icy road, my dad's drunken attempt at the wheel to save the car, the skid into the bank, and all the rolls the car took. I couldn't scream and yell for help. I couldn't move. All I could do was stand there and watch my parentse die, as police, ambulances, and fire trucks filled the scene with their wailing sirens. I heard the jaws of life being used to get the car open. The grass all around them was covered in blood, and skid marks could be seen nearly a hundred meters down the road.

     I was suddenly shaken awake. My eyes flew open to see the mascara-streaked, scared face of Kirstie Miller.
     My face paled. "Wh-what is it, Kirstie?" I said slowly.
     "It's your parents. Come with me. I don't want to wake your brothers," Kirstie said, barely above a whiper, panic in her voice.
     I quickly got out of bed, and followed her out the bedroom door, and down the stairs. Everything horrible flashed through my head. What could've possibly happened?

     As Kirstie frantically parked the car on the side of the road, I opened the door, and my legs were shaking. I stepped out of the car, and tried to walk after Kirstie to the big scene. There was a huge crowd gathered near the bridge, and sirens were flashing.
     It hit me. My dream, it had come true. I clutched my stomach, and nausea engulfed me.
     "Noooooooooo!" I wailed as I moved closer. My hand flew up to my mouth, my legs wobbled, and I fell down.
     A police offiver came over to me, and got me to stand up and walk over away from the scene with her.
"Are these your parents?" she asked gently.
     I nodded, not able to speak.
     She took a deep breath in. "Your parents, they...wel, it doesn't look too good for them."
     I closed my eyes wishing it all away. None of this was happening. It started to cry, as the officer held me in her arms, trying to comfort me. I pulled away, just wanting to be alone right now.
     I walked up to where Kirstie was standing. "Can we go in the car now?"
     "Sure. Why don't we go home, and you can settle down for a while? They'll tell us the news as soon as anything comes up," Kirstie said, stroking my hair gently.

     When we got back, I ran up the stairs to the room, and flung myself onto the bed, sobbing uncontrollably. I cried, and cried, until there wasn't a tear left in me. I breathed in unsteadily. I felt as though I would faint. Why did this happen to us? Wasn't life bad enough already? These thoughts ran through my hed at a hundred miles an hour. I suddenly felt dizzy and lay down. I glanced at the clock. It read 3:45 a.m.
     I jumped as Kirstie opened the door. "Sweetie," she said as she walked in, "I have some news about your parents."
     I sat up right away. "What is it, are they okay? What's going to happen to us?"
     Kirsite looked pained. She looked down, and gulped back tears. "Your parents...they were...they didn't make it," she said in between sobs.
     I burst into tears again. I shook my head. "No, I whispered barely audible, "No."

     Five days later, at my parents' funeral, I was surrounded with the comfort of my family, and my closest friends. I had been asked to give the eulogy, but I had a lot of trouble preparing it. I barely new my parents. I know it was a horrible thing to think, but it was the truth.
     I stepped up to the microphone we had set up in front of everyone, and cleared my throat. "My parents, Rachel and Leo, were loved by everyone. They weren't around my brothers, Joshua, Dean, and me very much, but we got to know them well. We learned from them when they were around, and were deeply distraught to see them go. Their lives were filled with joy, and I wish they were here to see their children grow up. They had great years with their family and friends, and I'm sure will be missed by everyone. Nothing could ever compare to the love they had for me, my brothers, and all you out there. Thanks," I said, my eyes starting to mist.
     I stepped down from the stand, and walked to my seat, and listened to a few other people speak. We then moved outside for the burials. I held two beautiful roses in my hand, one for each of them.
     After the coffins had been placed inside the holes, the priest asked us to say our good-byes, and place anything we had in the coffins, before they were buried. I was the first to move, and I placed a flower on each.
     I whispered good-bye, and then murmered, "There will always be a place in my heart, where dreams may grow."