In my nightmare, I lay screaming on the floor, four-years-old, watching my father kill my mother. I won’t make another sound for fourteen years. Not when he chains me to the tree, not when I am kept inside a wooden box under the bed, not even when he rapes me to rid me of the evil spirits. I have no voice. All I have are scars from the branding iron and a heart that shakes with fear.
When Tully, the white and black mutt that’s been my only friend, is hurt protecting me, I can’t stand the thought of living with him under the tree by Mama so I carry him to the farmhouse from where I’ve stolen food. A doctor lives there. Cole’s house is a place where they make food pretty, windows are made of colored glass and horses are rescued. It’s a place where sleeping is safe. Here stories called fairy tales make my heart melt, Tully chases chickens and I learn to read.
Cole’s past is marred by tragedy, too, though. When he learns who I really am, and can’t bear to see me, I must return to the gulley where Black Owl, the spirit only Daddy sees, demands my death. This is my story and there’s no one to save me except myself. How do I find my voice in this place of ancient sorrow before it is too late?
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