My name is Rosy Salmon, and I am eleven years old. I have my father's name, you see, not my mother's. Ever since last year, she appears to be a nothing-person. As though she was never there.
Nina Johnston has moved in, and she's also taken over the house. I try not to openly show how much I dislike Johnston, but she must think she's my mother, or something. She doesn't like my mother's name being mentioned, never ever.
I don't think papa knows what Johnston is up to, but I don't really care anymore. He does everything she tells him to, which Is why I am to go to St. Barnabas School for Girls. It's a boarding school, and about four hours away from here in the car. I think it's actually in Wales, which would explain the long drive. I'm going with Heather, my auntie. She's papa's sister, but she told me not to worry about Nina Johnston, because everyone knows what a hag she is.
Well, everyone except from papa, by the sounds of things. So, I've started this journal to make sure I have clear notes on everything...
Tomorrow, I start at St. Barnabas. Johnston consulted me this morning, actually. She said exactly these words: "The sooner you're gone, the better. Don't mess this up, or you'll be living with Heather in no time."
Ahhh well, what can I do? I've not really got a choice. Papa's being a complete idiot; Heather, Peter - Heather's husband, that is - and I have all warned him about how she is always speaking dismissively of him, how she only wants to control him, and how she's generally an old witch, but he won't listen to any or it.
Anyway, I'm going to pack my picture board, and then go to sleep.
I'm in Heather's Voltswagen Jeep at the moment. But she's not driving. Last night, apparently she was vomiting, so she was "unfit to drive", which is just terrible.
Johnston is driving - God save Heather's car! I'll tell you about my picture board, to pass some time.
There was actually no board, just a ton of pictures. I started it about three years ago, when my mum was just about to die. There are fifty pictures of her and I, in the time when she had no hair, because of Alopecia. She has no hair in those pictures, and she looks ill. Thirteen of the pictures are of us at the zoo, and six are of us eating ice cream, but on different occasions. She loved ice cream, and so do I, even though she's not here to eat it with me now.
We have the ice cream all over our chins, in one of them. I remember the day so well. We had spent an absolute fortune on Ben&Jerry's, and were getting through it straight away.