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chapter 1

Save YouBY DDacat | PUBLISHED 10/26/2013 | UPDATED 10/26/2013 | IT'S A WORK IN PROGRESS

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I've lived in Africa for as long as I can remember. Luko's always been there for me. It's strange because I'm light skinned and he's dark skinned like everybody else. Sometimes he can get harsh, but he acts like a father to me. I'm fourteen now, and I've been helping out at the school for two years. I love helping out the children, but oftentimes Luko makes me go work to make him money. I don't understand why he needs it, though,  because he's always been well off. Which leads me to my next point. I don't know where I came from and my earliest memory was from 6 years ago. Luko's story is that he found me passed out on the ground with amnesia just on the outskirts of town. I must have been from Ireland,  he says.  I have the accent and the looks. Luko took me in and raised me well. All I have of my old life are a necklace with my name, Kiera, scrawled on it and a small scar on my side. I've given up hope on ever going home. Why would I, even if I could?  No matter how bad life is here in Ghana,  it is my home and where I belong.

Anyway,  I was helping out in the classroom today when a small boy, Yeb, looked up at me with a big grin. "Kiera, mama says singers coming to help us! They from England and they give us money!"

"Is that so?" I asked him, my eyes twinkling. "How long are they staying?"

"Um..." Yeb put on an adorable thinking face. "I tink mama said two weeks. But they visit, and they will be a miracle!"

I laughed. "That's amazing!  Now you be good, and study so you can support your family, okay?" I thought about those singers as I walked to my chair near the front of the room. I didn't know much about pop culture or other places, but I was interested in seeing if I could find out more about my old life.

Suddenly, I heard loud, male voices heading over to the room. They sounded British, but one voice sounded like mine. Irish. Five guys walked into the room, followed by a cameraman. Were these the singers?


Niall's POV

We are now in Africa.  I don't know if the boys and I are prepared for this... the poverty, the sickness.... It's just terrible. Probably many of their family members are dead too... Family. Like the one I have at home... and the one I don't.  It's been... how long? Six years since I've seen my kid sister? I bet Kiera's dead now, but there's always hope. If she were alive now, it would be her fourteenth birthday. I slipped my hand in my pocket and pulled out my old leather wallet. I stared at the picture of 8 year old Kiera, grinning with a popsicle stained gaptoothed grin. Her hair was brown and straight, with the little golden streaks that I loved. Freckles dotted the bridge of her little nose, and in that photo she was wearing her favorite dress. My heart ached for the little girl that had gone missing that day at the park, gone missing from everywhere but our hearts.

I quickly shook myself out of it. There's no point in crying. I tucked my wallet away and looked up. We were at the schoolhouse. I heard laughing and calling.

"Lads, we have arrived!" Exclaimed Louis to my right. Louis was one of my bandmates. He never failed to make me laugh and almost always knew the right thing to say. He slid his hand down his gelled hair and grinned. "Ready to make some children have the times of their lives?"

"Definitely," Harry responded dutifully. Harry was the happy-go-lucky one. His brown curls bounced around with every step, reminding me of the time we had straightened it to prank him. He really did love his hair. We poked our heads through the doorway. Children milled about, a teacher helping out some children. I noticed a girl in the front looking at me, curious. She didn't look African. I noticed something familiar about her. She had brown hair that shone like gold was weaved into it. She had freckles on her nose and a green clover charm hung on a silver necklace around her neck.

The girl got up and walked to us, grinning. "Welcome to our humble village! My name is Kiera and I assist Teacher Kumbala. Are you the British singers?" She had a slightly African accent mixed in with her Irish one.

Zayn replied to her, but I didn't listen to hear his reply. Kiera. What a coincidence.


Kiera's POV

"Yeah, we’re One Direction," the black-haired one replied easily but excitedly. "I'm Zayn, this is Harry, that's Liam, here's Louis, and the blonde one is Niall. What can we do?"

"Well," I started, "I guess you could sing, or teach them ABC's, or play games. They're easily amused."

The boys nodded and ran off to talk to the children. Only Niall stayed behind. "How old are you?" He asked, peering at me curiously.

I noted his straight white teeth, nearly invisible braces, and dark brown roots. "I just turned 14 today," I informed him uneasily. This stranger’s interest worried me. "Why?"

"No reason. Could I see that necklace? It looks expensive." Niall reached out to touch it.

"Alright," I replied, starting to feel uncomfortable. He turned it over and saw my name written on it.

"Funny," he said, staring at me. "I once had a sister named Kiera who had this same necklace. She disappeared 6 years ago and today would be her 14th birthday. She had the same hair and eyes and freckles as you."

My eyes widened. Could it be? "I was found outside town six years ago, with no memory and no remnants of my old life but this necklace and a scar. Luko says I'm Irish." I responded, staring hopefully back at him.

"Kiera fell down a tree when she was seven and scratched her side on a branch on her way down. She also broke her arm that day, so after that her arm always slightly over bent." Niall went on. "Could I see you straighten your right arm?"

I stuck my arm out to my side and straightened it. As always,  it went more than it should, something I was always slightly ashamed about. Niall gasped and lifted up my shirt a little on my left side. Sure enough, there was that diagonal scar.

"Good God..." He muttered. His head shot up and called over the closest boy, Harry, who happened to be playing with Yeb. "Harry, I think I found her."

Harry, the curly-haired one, looked up from Yeb and trotted over. “Niall, you found who?”

Niall gave him an exasperated expression. “Sister. See here; she has the necklace I gave her, same scar, same arm, and same hair. Her name is even Kiera and she’s Irish! Plus, she appeared in Africa about 6 years ago. Harry, this all adds up!”

“But...I don’t remember you...either of you.” I pointed out. “I wouldn’t know if you’re my brother or not, because I don’t remember.”

“Not a thing?” asked Harry, suddenly very interested.

I shook my head, a billion thoughts zooming through my mind. “Ah, well, let’s get back to work, shall we?” I asked, turning and walking away. This didn’t turn out as well as I had always dreamed and I wished the singers had never come. For years, I had hoped that I’d remember something if I ever met my old family. Now that I did, and no memories surfaced, it was like I’d just lost the game.

As I reached the doorway, I was stopped by a hand on my shoulder. I spun around. “What?” I asked, annoyed.

Harry looked concerned. “Where do you live?” he asked, his brows knitted in concern. “Niall and I want to know how you fared for 6 years, and who took care of you.”

“None of your business,” I snapped. I was shocked by my sudden attitude. I was never mean...

“Please?” Niall begged, making a puppydog face. “It is my business. You, more likely than not, are my sister, and I deserve to know what my sister’s been through.”

Unwillingly, I caved. It wasn’t his face that made me do so, it was the obvious pain behind it. I imagined Niall as a heartbroken little boy, devastated with the loss of his sister. “I live in the biggest house in the center of the village. I won’t be home until late afternoon, when the sun is halfway down. Luko will be there.” I mentally slapped myself for giving away my information. I knew I was being stubborn, but inside, I did want to let them come and save me. That was just  the way I was. I never wanted to show any weakness, but I still wanted someone to protect me. I was a paradox.

Several hours later, just when I had said, Niall and Harry were at my door.

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