Chapter Thirty-One

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She had been wandering the room for just under two hours now exploring all there was to explore. She had managed to get a few hours sleep but felt completely disoriented when she woke in the foreign room within a foreign place. It was so different to how she had left it six years before and it seemed as if with each new discovery she made, it led to two or three more. Being locked in the room didn't evoke a feeling of fear within Leigh as it was something she often went through as a teenager. Leanne didn't allow her to have a mobile phone as a teenager and when one was found hidden under her pillow when she was supposed to be asleep one night Leanne took it away from her as well as her radio and ipod and didn't allow her daughter out of her room until the following afternoon.

It wasn't all that bad considering...what her mother didn't know was that she had another two phones hidden under the floorboard by her bed and a stash of food kept with them. It wasn't an ideal way to live but it was the only way she knew how. She wasn't allowed any friends but the few she did have kept her at arms length as she was often referred to as a freak. She often told them that they didn't understand and they should try living in the same house as her psychotic, fame obsessed mother but they simply laughed it off and returned to harassing her some more. In hindsight she knew they weren't really her friends but from the age of thirteen Leigh craved attention and a connection from someone, whether that be positive or negative.

There was one good thing that came from her mother's ways and that was her need for Leigh to be a perfectly rounded and well educated girl. Considering her life in the family home was one of imprisonment she spent most of her time in the garden with various different teachers and tutors. Her mother made her study and work hard to be the best that she could be but when Leigh finally surpassed Leanne's own ability, that was when things began to truly change.

Leanne had never been the musical type. She could hit the odd note when singing and sing in a somewhat correct tune whereas Leigh's voice sounded as if it had come directly from the angels. From the moment she could speak sentences she began to sing along to the nursery rhymes playing on the stereo and her mother had every intention of harnessing her daughter's talent for herself. She had planned to have Leigh bring out a Christmas album every two years with all of the proceeds being paid directly into her bank- seeing it as a form of child support from the child themselves. But that hadn't happened- it was only thing her father David could stop. For as long as she could remember there was a constant battle happening in the Danvers household between David and his wife but for an unknown reason he stayed by her side through everything- even losing his daughter.

Her passion for music had come from her mother and there were times when she truly realised how different things could have been if she had been forced to sing Christmas songs every two years for her mother to reap the benefits. It was her father she had to thank for this as she knew without him standing up for her just that one time she would never have fulfilled her dream. The long nights she spent locked in her room for sneaking out with a boy or staying out past curfew gave her time to herself alone from the rest of her family.

She ran her fingers along the white and black keys of the keyboard in her bedroom- it was the only thing that was hers and she gently lowered herself into the plush chair. It was in that exact spot that she wrote and entered her song into the competition which single handedly changed her future forever.

She longed to be able to sit on the balcony on the the other side of the glass door of her room and feel the morning air dance across her skin. She wanted to feel the sun on her cheeks and smell the freshly cut grass but she couldn't even do that. Her mother had been thorough and thought of everything. Both doors were locked and so were the windows that were big enough for her to squeeze through if she tried hard enough.

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