Read Crank - 01 Online

Authors: Ellen Hopkins

Crank - 01

Excerpt from “Give Me Women, Wine, and Snuff” by John Keats

If you purchased this book without a cover, you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It was reported as “unsold and destroyed” to the publisher, and neither the author nor the publisher has received any payment for this “stripped book.”

This book is a work of fiction. Any references to historical events, real people, or real locales are used fictitiously. Other names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination, and any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

First Simon Pulse edition October 2004

Text copyright © 2004 by Ellen Hopkins

SIMON PULSE
An imprint of Simon & Schuster
Children’s Publishing Division
1230 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020
www.SimonandSchuster.com

All rights reserved, including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form.

SIMON PULSE and colophon are registered trademarks of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Designed by Sammy Yuen Jr.

The text of this book was set in Trade Gothic Condensed.

Manufactured in the United States of America

20 19 18 17 16 15 14

Library of Congress Control Number 2003116437

ISBN-13: 978-0-689-86519-0

ISBN-10: 0-689-86519-8
eISBN 978-1-439-10651-8

DEDICATION

This book is dedicated to my family, and all families whose lives have been touched by the monster.
With special thanks to Lin Oliver and Steve Mooser and their wonderful SCBWI, which guided my way.

AUTHOR’S NOTE

While this work is fiction, it is loosely based on a very true story—my daughter’s. The monster did touch her life, and the lives of her family. My family. It is hard to watch someone you love fall so deeply under the spell of a substance that turns him or her into a stranger. Someone you don’t even want to know.

Nothing in this story is impossible. Much of it happened to us, or to families like ours. Many of the characters are composites of real people. If they ring true, they should. The “baby” at the end of the book is now seven years old, and my husband and I have adopted him. He is thriving now, but it took a lot of extra love.

If this story speaks to you, I have accomplished what I set out to do. Crank is, indeed, a monster—one that is tough to leave behind once you invite it into your life. Think twice. Then think again.

Crank

Flirtin’ with the Monster
Introduction
Alone
On Bree
More on Bree
My Mom Will Tell You
Aboard United 1425
Two Hours into the Flight
Hot Landing
The Prince of Albuquerque
Mutual Assessment
I Got in a Car with a Stranger
Small Talk Shrank to Minuscule
You Call This a Castle?
Not My Type
At Least I Had Something
Dad Had to Go to Work
He Worked in a Bowling Alley
I Opted Out
Not Quite Silent
The Screaming
Of Course, When I Was Little
Okay, Over the Last Few Years
Dad Hadn’t Paid His Cable Bill
The Rules
She Went Inside
I Must Have Moaned
The Wind Blew Up
Bree? Who Was She?
I Wanted to Know Him, Too
The Return of Guinivere
That’ll Teach Me
Toss-and-Turn Night
Through the Keyhole
So Much for Sleep
I Hid Out for Three Days
I Even Spent Time at the Bowling Alley
He Hadn’t Changed After All
You Fly Until You Crash
Dad Crashed
He Knew It, Too
His Mom Was at Work
He Wanted to Kiss Me
First Kiss
The Week Flew By
Somehow the Place Looked Different
Choices, Choices
You Have to Remember
We Met at the Bowling Alley
Just Before the Drop
No Time Like That First Time
But That’s Not Exactly Cool
If a Little’s Good
Although Maybe
Because It Wasn’t That
I Didn’t Want to Stop Either
For Some Crazy Reason
Not Until the Door Opened
Like an Idiot
The Monster Loves to Talk
Dad Said
I Was Pissed
Night Had Hung
I Thought I Knew the Way Home
I Tried to Be Cool
Hands
And Then I Heard
Three Raiders Jackets
I Held Tight
Dawn Broke
About That Time
Clueless
I Was Supposed to Sleep?
After the Fourth
Used Up
Woke to Pounding
Coming
I Filled the Sink
His Demon Showed in His Eyes
He Told Me Why Anyway
My Brain Somersaulted
We Sat on the Floor
Fifteen Blocks on Foot and a Bus Ride Later
Lince Floated
Evening, When We Left
Dad Asked Where I’d Been
One Hour
Instead We Returned to Small Talk
Dad Went Out
I Was Mid-Drip
Okay, I Looked Awful
So of Course I Did a Really Stupid Thing
Adam
But First I Had to Pee
But That Day
So I Said
Girls Get Screwed
I Considered That
One Day and Counting
To Speed or Not to Speed?
A Couple of Toots
But Right Then
It Throbbed   the Next Day
I Still Wasn’t Down When We Landed
Tightened Airport Security
I Saw Them
Then She Caught Sight
Homecomings Are Strange
My Mom Says “I Love You” with Food
Home Sweet Home
Despite All Trepidation
REGARDLESS
I Slithered Down the Hall
The Door Opened
Brain Lag
Silence
On the Nightstand
I Went Straight for the Phone
Changed
The Phone, Still in My Hand, Rang
At Least I Had the House to Myself
I Considered
Suddenly, However
My Luck Ran Out
It Got Worse
All Thoughts of Bad Habits
I Went to Try On the Swimsuit
The Tattoo, However, Was
As I Pondered
His Idea of Love
Mom Knocked on My Door
Over Lasagna and Garlic Bread
Leigh Knew
Later
I Tucked That Away
Wild Waters Day Dawned
Mom and Scott
Whether That’s Good or Bad
Rather Than Face
Before Bree
As If That Weren’t Enough
Right Then, Three People
Still, When Brendan Came By
I Went Home
Grounded UFN
The Problem with Being Grounded
She Cut Me Loose
I Pondered That
Did It Show?
We Drove Down by the River
One Spoon
I Had to Explain
In That Quite Hot Moment
Chase Wanted to Walk Around the Mall
A Second Word of Advice
Two Guys in One Day?
Mom Wanted to Hear All About Brendan
Inconsistent Me
Dear Kristina,
Why Was Everyone
I Did Cry Then
Chase Was Right
I Had to Pick Up
GUFN Again
Leigh Headed Back to School
Chase Left Me with Goodies
I Watched the Window
I Hid Out in My Room Until Dinner
I Hoped Not
Brendan Was Waiting
We Bumped up the Road
Saturday Night
Brendan Stoked the Fire
Paydirt!
Hair Mussed
High
Day One
Mom’s Car Wasn’t in the Driveway
Which Roused Me
Major Mistake
I Did
I Mostly Managed That
Backpack Bulging
So Why
As I Considered My Answer
Giselle?
You Bet I Did
I Could Hardly Wait for Friday
It Started with a Kiss
But It Was Bree
Not a Blink of Remorse
Have You Ever
Brendan Pulled Up
I Stumbled up the Driveway
Exhausted
It Was Mean
Close to Empty
Brain Waves
The Game Replayed
Answer Before They Ask
Stunned
Relief, Disappointment
Powerful Words
Tried to Beat Mom Inside
Leveled
Light-Headed
Northern Nevada Autumns
No Answer
Timing Is Everything
We Went into Her Room
She Forgot to Mention
This Time
He Talked at Me Awhile Longer
The Next Few Days
I Gave Up the Bus
I Meant
Okay, the Air Races Intervened
Robyn Was Game
Wolf Whistles
We Found Our Box
Three Races
Robyn Wanted the Whole Story
Now, You Might Think
Before I Met the Monster
But   Now   Nothing
Problem Number One: School
Problem Number Two: Relationships
Problem Number Three: Connections
Problem Number Four: Feeling Good
Feeling Good
I Would Celebrate Several Ways
In One of Her Better Moments
Celebration Two
Half of Me
Let’s Just Say I Got to Go
Ecstasy Is Hard to Describe
Chase Was Right There
I Was Aglow
Unforgettable Birthdays
Elevation
I Don’t Know
I Was Cinderella
If You Guessed
Exiled
I Spent the Next Day
Burned Out
Jerked Awake
Report Cards?
Anyone Could Have Come Along
He Got Out of His Car
I Wasn’t Scared—Yet
Tough Girls
Cause and Effect
Back in My Room
Resolutions
Other Problems
Crank, You See
By Wednesday
The Good …
… The Bad …
… And the Ugly
I Did Think Twice
I Became an Instant Celebrity
Clear Blue Easy
I Went Through
Saturday
My Appointment Was at Two
Planned Parenthood
I Already Knew My Options
The Realization
Passing Out
Voices
Oh Yeah, I Was Fine
Chase Steadied Me
He Drove Me Home—Slowly
My Mom?!?!
The Kitchen Was Warm
Somehow She Didn’t Notice
I Opened My Mouth
Omens! Great!
I Thought About Calling Leigh
Snow Began to
Snow Day
Too Much
I Needed Two Things
How Big
I
Mesmerized
More Choices
I Won’t Bore You
Highs
The #1 Best Thing
Lows
The #1 Worst Thing
Happy Endings

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