A few days after she had registered for the contest Cerin sat at her work desk, near the kitchen and pored over the various documents in front of her. On one half of the desk were her designs for the contest that were due in a few days and on the other were her bills.
Her university funds had been locked by the bank and were set to be paid automatically so she couldn't touch them, but on the other hand she wouldn't have to worry about paying for them out of her own pocket, which was good.
As well her uncle owned the building, so she didn't have to worry about paying rent, and her electricity and water bills were all but taken care of as long as she could be careful to stay within the limit that was set.
Now the main problems were clothing and living conditions for Ryella and Serana, as well as the incoming baby.
Ryella was starting school in a week and would need all sorts of school supplies like clothes and binders. As well Cerin had enrolled her into a decently high class middle school that she herself had gone to so the tuition was a problem.
There was also the worry that because of the low standard of school she had attended she wouldn't be able to keep up with the curriculum so Cerin had hired a tutor. She could do it herself but much to Ryella's displeasure Cerin didn't see herself having enough time not patience to do the child justice.
Even though Cerin had thrown around ideas such as letting Serana do house work for others or to help her in sewing Cerin was unwilling to put the pregnant woman into such harsh labor. So a result the only option left was to let her enroll into a sort of community college and to get some form of an education so Serana could dictate what she wanted to do.
Then for the incoming baby, it had already been three months since Serana and Ryella had come to live with her and the woman was already nearing the end of her seventh month. Cerin didn't know much about raising children since out of all of the Cerins only two of them had had children of their own, the first and the second.
The first barely got to raise her child until her husband died and the child was no longer the heir apparent and the second was so focused on her career that she even composed three new songs during childbirth.
So while she only knew the bare basics she did know that babies were expensive and would only get more so as they grew.
As Cerin tried to balance the bills Serana walked past her holding the pamphlet that had been shoved into her hands by the younger woman and was currently trying to figure out what courses she should take from the college. She didn't want to take a very long course, nor did she want to take one that was time consuming as she would soon have two children to raise and couldn't bear the thought of burdening their kind benefactor any more than she already had.
As she walked by she looked over the sheets that were on the table and quickly realized what was going on. For a moment she was filled with self loathing and began to think,
'What am I doing? Here I am leisurely taking my time picking out a course to do for fun while I leech off a nineteen year old that has her whole life ahead of her.'
Her mind whirled around and round as she took in the sight of the pretty and young girl, hunched over piles of bills and squinting at the uniform words through her large but stylish spectacles that only came out when she had to focus.
Finally, through doubt and self hate Serana realized that there was something that she could do to help, it was just that she had been unwilling because it involved returning to her mother's house.
At the very thought of the place Serana's mind was filled with dark thoughts and a cold shiver went down her spine as she remembered the almost fifteen years of torture that she had lived. The only reason that she had even thought of going back there was because she remembered that since the day Ryella had been born she had slowly but steadily been storing away a portion of whatever earnings she'd made from various jobs into a small container under the floorboards in her room. Her mother had never cleaned a day in her life and as a result would never find it so she wasn't worried about that but because she had left in such a hurry that day she had forgotten to take it with her.
As well while she was there she could get her and Ryella's belongings from her room and save Cerin from having to purchase those as well while waiting for Serana to give birth and be able to get a job.
She was unwilling, she really was but if it meant that she could help Cerin out, even just a little bit then she knew that she had to.
Having solidified her plans she retreated into her room and for the first time dialed the number she remembered so clearly. Her thumb trembled over the green button and her mind raced through a thousand thoughts per minute, each of them memories of the horrors she had gone through and had finally escaped under her mother's hands.
Underneath all of these memories she couldn't help but be filled with self loathing once again.
" Come on Serana. Cerin, a girl almost ten years your junior is supporting her own lifestyle and living by herself without parents or anything and is fully supporting you and your family while you sit on your fat butt and eat her food. If you can't do this then you really are a selfish whore like she said you were"
After that sad but effective pep talk her thumb smashed down on the call button and the phone began to ring.
" Hello! How can I help you today?"
Her head shook at the familiarly perky tone and she tried to settle down her voice as she responded.
" Hey Shelly. This is Serana. You know i've been out for a few months and I'm planning on coming back today but.. You know my mother. Do you think i could get you to let me in?"
The other voice on the phone immediately responded in the same perky but uncaring tone.
" Ofcourse! Just swing by and pick it up like usual."
Wahh! I'm back! sorry, school just started so that's been a priority for me. but I can at least tentatively promise a chapter every three days or so!
but I'm finally giving Serana a bit of character development! what do you guys think?
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