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from Ally (working title) by Ruth Virgo

A Secret

Where are you’re parents Ally? Oh, I know, they’re those two, over there!” Tori laughed as she pointed to a really fat couple near the door.

“No. My parents aren’t coming.” Ally made the mistake of telling them too much.

“That makes you an orphan.”

Ally raised an eyebrow and shook her head dismissively at them, holding in the hurt that overwhelmed her. She wasn’t an orphan. Her parents weren’t dead, only, her life wouldn’t have been too different if they were. Her parents weren’t coming because they prioritised their jobs over their children. Once, when Ally tore a ligament in P.E. they wouldn’t visit her in hospital during the week due to their busy work lives - even when they visited at the weekend they didn’t stay for long because they had to attend a lecture. The wait up to the weekend had been long and painful with her only visitors being her three sisters: Cas (the oldest and most rebellious); Eva (sometimes serious but still a great laugh); and Nicole (always ready to tease people and get into arguments).

“I’m so sorry to hear about your parents... You can always stay at our house - Can’t she Tori?” Tori’s twin, Sam mocked. He was the class clown and sat next to Ally in all her lessons.

“No prob, but she’s staying in your room. No way am I gonna let her get her crusty hands anywhere near my new... pink... luxury... carpet.”

“Hey I was going to get one of them!” Maisy, Tori’s friend, piped up.

Ignoring Maisy, “The sleepover sounds great but I would prefer to sleep in a bin than Sam’s room. Also, I really don’t need your condolences for the loss of my parents after-all, it was me who killed them.” Ally played along, used to all the teasing. “Please don’t tell the police though, I almost got caught in the act,” she whispered.

“Oh my gosh! You killed your parents! Who do you live with now then?”

“I live with my evil Aunt Ruth who makes me work like a slave, day and night.”

“Just like Cinderella!” Tori clapped her hands and put on a silly ...

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