Camille & Jordan: Through the Window

Title: Through the Window
Rating: PG
Summary: A young girl named Camille comes back to visit her long-lost sister only to discover the world she once knew very changed.
Warning(s): One girl will kiss another before this story is over. If that offends you, please don’t read.
Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. Not intended to represent any real persons, places, events, or things. This story is copyright Dawn Kelley and all rights to these characters belong to me.

“Daddy, please, please don’t take my sister away,” Maddy begged.


“I’m sorry honey, it can’t be helped,” her father said as he packed Camille’s bags.


Camille sat clutching the teddy bear Maddy had won at the fair for her in her arms. Her long curly blond hair draped low on her shoulders as her head was hung in the air. She had only felt at home in one place, with Maddy. So she wondered, why had she ruined it?


“Cam, say sorry,” the ten year old brunette begged of her sister.


“It don’t matter Maddy, it’s over.”


“It’s not over,” Maddy cried. “You’re my sister. You’re my best friend.”


And finally, nine year old Cam cried too and they wrapped their arms around each other.


“I don’t care where they put you, you’re my sister,” Maddy said. “You’ll always be my sister.”


Maddy’s father nearly cried himself. Unable to have a second child, they thought getting a foster child would be a good way to give their daughter the sibling she wanted. Two years ago, Cam had come into their lives. She was a bubbly little girl with blue eyes and blond hair, who at first seemed quite loving. But a week into it, the family began to experience the after effects of the little girl’s problems. First of all, she stole. Not just from the home, but outside of it. Almost everyday she came home from school with something, claiming someone gave it to her. They soon found out this was a lie when quite a few kids noticed things missing and the school reported home to them. This had been there first attempt to punish her and she had responded by screaming and kicking. Time outs had always worked with Maddy, but when they told Cam to go to her room she refused to and dared them to do anything about it. So they stopped giving her extras and treats, but then she would just get mad at them for daring to punish her and show off again. Cam never took responsibility for her actions. And no matter how much they talked to her, she refused to accept she was wrong.


But at this moment, it was really hard for the parents to see this out of control child. All they saw was two broken hearted best friends who didn’t want to be separated. Maddy and Cam loved each other. In fact, the parents were pretty sure Cam loved Maddy more than she loved them. They had unhappy ‘sister’ moments, which usually ended in Cam screaming and throwing a tantrum, but they always made up before the day was out. And even though she had her own bed, Cam had begun sleeping with Maddy a week after she arrived. At first the parents had moved her back to her own bed on the other side of the room, but before the night was out she was usually back in Maddy’s bed and the parents gave up trying to separate them.


But now, it had to be done. The nine and ten year olds had attempted to run away, Cam’s idea. Cam had once again gotten in trouble and the girls had lost their Nintendo. To get back at the parents for taking it, Cam convinced Maddy to run away with her. When Maddy and Cam didn’t come home that night, the parents panicked and called the cops. Cam had slept on the street before, but Maddy hadn’t and in the middle of the night she had snuck to a phone and called her parents. She cried and apologized, but Cam got mad at her and was determined to stay that way until her foster parents told her they couldn’t take anymore. Maddy begged for another chance, saying she’d make her be good. And Cam was suddenly promising to be good. But the parents couldn’t take the chance anymore and called the social worker to tell her they had to let her go.


And now there was a ring at the door, Cam’s worker. Maddy and Cam were still crying into each other’s shoulders and holding on to each other.


“Please don’t take her away,” Maddy begged as the social worker came into the room.


“I’ll be good, I promise I’ll be good,” Cam cried holding on to Maddy.


“Maddy, it’s time to let go,” Her mother said pulling her away.


“No,” Maddy cried as the social worker pulled Cam free of the other little girl’s grasp.


“Cam, I love you,” Maddy cried.


“I love you too Maddy,” Cam said.


And both parents almost cried themselves. Cam always sounded phony when she was apologizing to them. And even ‘I love you’ sounded like a con these days. But it meant something when she said it to Maddy and they both knew it.





Four years later, Cam sat staring up at Maddy’s house. She watched the house from across the street, remembering happier days and wondering why she had ruined them. She couldn’t believe they still lived in the same place. Permanence wasn’t something she had in her life, so it was hard to imagine anyone else having it. For the past few months, she’d been living on the street with two friends, Tricia,15, and Marcus,16, who were girlfriend and boyfriend. They’d all been living in the same foster home and decided to split one day. They were sick of being forced to go to school. There foster mother didn’t really care about them anyway, just the check they bought in. She even knew Tricia and Marcus were sleeping together and she didn’t care. She brought them clothes from the good-will (when she bothered to buy them clothes) and kept the refrigerator locked so that they could only get to the food when she allowed it. For this reason, the three of them had become like a little gang. They had to take care of themselves and make money for themselves if they wanted to eat when they wanted and dress like they wanted.


So Marcus and the girls got themselves part time jobs and earned enough money to get a car the day Marcus got his license. But the truth was the little part time jobs hadn’t been the only source of money they found. There was money to be made on the streets with the right product and they started feeding from the pot. Hustling was second nature to Cam and the same seemed to be true for Tricia and Marcus.


The day Marcus got his license they drove away in his used car and hadn’t looked back. But they didn’t realizing keeping the used vehicle running didn’t leave them with money for much else. They were currently squatting in an abandoned house for shelter.


“Yo, we can’t stay here much longer,” Marcus said swiping his long brown locks out his eyes. ‘We got work to do and we need the cash. We can‘t blow it off.”


“I just want to see her,” Cam said.


“Her? I didn’t know you was like that,” Marcus said.


“It ain’t like that,” Cam told him. “She’s my sister.”


“Real sister or play sister?” Tricia questioned as she twirled one of her braids around her finger. Tricia kind of reminded Cam of that singer, Brandy. Except she was cuter. Sometimes she caught herself staring to long at her firm butt or her full breast, but then she stopped herself. She had bigger things on her mind than debates about her sexuality. And Tricia and Marcus were all she had these days, so she didn’t want to make waves. They were together and she stayed out of it.


“She’s the only one that ever really loved me,” Cam told her. “She’s my real sister in the only way it counts.”


Suddenly, they heard a little child’s voice singing in unison with a teenager. And that’s when Cam spotted her.


“Maddy,” Cam said softly.


Maddy never glanced her way and Cam didn’t want her to. She just wanted to see her again.


“Maddy?” Tricia questioned.


“Madeline. Like that little orphan kid in that story. Lived with that nun and all them other little girls. “


“Who’s the baby with her?”


“I don’t know. Maybe her mom and dad got another foster kid,” Cam said as Maddy slipped into her house. “She looked happy, didn’t she?”


“I guess,” Tricia said.”You ready to go?”


“Yeah,” Cam said.”I’ve seen her.”


And they all climbed into the car and drove off.





But seeing her wasn’t enough, she wanted to talk to her. In the middle of the night, Cam took a long bus ride back to Maddy’s house. She remembered the house as if she had lived there yesterday. When she got off the bus, she walked the all to familiar path to the only place that had felt like home.


She crossed the threshold of the white picket fence, walked up the familiar walkway, and raised her hand to knock on the door. But then she heard laughter inside, the laughter of her former foster parents. People who she’d made miserable one too many times. People who she had made so miserable that they saw past the ‘Cindy Brady’ image that had once protected her.


So she dropped her hand. Then she noticed a ladder. She really just wanted to talk to Maddy. She could live with never seeing her foster parents again, but not Maddy. So she got a hold of the ladder, propped it against the porch roof, climbed up, and knocked on Maddy’s window. As she waited for a response, she wondered if the room had changed. Were the walls still painted Barbie pink? Was Maddy bed still in the corner with her full named plastered across the wall above it? She supposed her own name had been removed. Was there still a table in the corner, full of dolls having a never ending tea party? Was there still a doll house in the opposite corner with mommy and daddy and little Camille and Madeline? Was there any sign of her at all still left in that room? Had it all changed once she left?


The window opened, but it wasn’t Maddy at the window. It was the little girl that had been in her company earlier.


“Who is you?” the little girl asked.


“Camille,” Cam said. “Who are you?”


“Mary,” the little girl said.


Cam glanced in the room and saw the name Mary now where Madeline had once been.


“Is this Maddy’s room?” Cam asked.


“No, it’s mine. How you know my sister?”


“She’s my sister too.”


“No she’s not.”


“Yes she is,” Cam spat back, illogically angry at this small child for questioning her on this.


“No she not, I prove it,” the little girl said running off.


Camille thought she should run, after all that little girl could be running to get Maddy’s mom and dad. But somehow she didn’t think that was the case. And sure enough, Mary returned with Maddy. Mary was talking so fast, Maddy obviously didn’t understand what she was so hyped up about.


“Mary, calm down. I can’t under–”


“Maddy,” Cam said from outside the window.


Maddy suddenly froze and looked at her. She looked like she was ready to cry, but in a happy way. Cam was glad to know she’d missed her.


“Camelott,” Maddy said.


She had called her Camelott often when they were younger and a wonderful sense of warmth flooded her heart upon hearing it again.


Cam climbed in the window. She stood there unsure of what to do, but Maddy ran to hug her. At that moment, Cam could have died the happiest girl on earth. Maddy still loved her and that made her heart skip a beat. They held onto each other a long time with little Mary looking up at them bewildered.


“What are you doing here?” Maddy said when she finally let go.


“I just wanted to see you again,” Cam told her.


“Who is she?” Mary questioned.


“Mary, this is my sister, Camille,” she told the little girl.


“But mommy and daddy never said–” Mary began, but Maddy put a finger to her lips.


“Mommy and daddy had to… well they wouldn’t like it if Cam was here. So I need you to keep this a secret.”


“You want me to lie?” Mary questioned.


“No, just be quiet about it. They’re not going to ask you about Cam, so you don’t have to tell them about her.”


“Okay, but if they ask.”

“They won’t,” Maddy said holding Cam’s hand and leading her out the room.


Maddy led Cam up to attic, which had  changed since Cam left. They’d played hide and seek in the attic and dress up, because it was so full of old junk. Anything that was of no use went to the attic, resulting in a cluttered mess. But the cluttered mess had disappeared. It had been transformed into a pretty decent bedroom with a nice stereo system and a double bed.


“After you left, I moved up here,” Maddy said. “Mom and dad kept trying to make me sleep in my room, but I refused. That was our room and once you were gone, it didn’t feel right anymore. Mom and dad adopted little Mary about three years ago. She was two and a half, so they figured I’d get overwhelmed with her cuteness and forget all about you. I never could though.”


“So, Mary’s adopted, she’s your real sister?” Cam questioned, settling down on Maddy’s bed.


“You’re my real sister,” Maddy said, sitting beside her. “So what’s up with you?”


“Well, I’m on my own now.”

“Impossible, you’re only like thirteen.”


“So! If you knew the alternative, you’d prefer the streets too.”


“Anything has to be better than the streets.”


“You have no idea,” Cam said. “I’m supposed to live with this lady who only takes teenagers; basically because she knows as long as we can do what we want she’ll get her check. You know my ‘foster siblings’ fuck each other in the bed right next to me.”


“Camille!” Maddy exclaimed, she only used her proper name when she was upset.






“Forgive me for soiling your ears two-shoes,” Cam replied playfully.


“Shut up,” Maddy said throwing a pillow at her.


Cam threw the pillow back and smiled. The pillow slapping continued briefly before they broke into a fit of giggles. They eventually dropped the pillows in favor of tussling. The giggling continued and if her parents weren’t all the way down on the first floor, entertaining in the living room, they might have heard them.


They eventually fell out on the bed, exhausted from laughing. And they waited for the laughter to subside as they lay side by side. And it didn’t matter to Cam that this wasn’t the pink room they shared a handful of years back. What mattered is that they were here, together, at this moment, and they were happy.


Cam lifted up on one arm and looked down at Maddy.


“You know, you’re the first person that ever really loved me.”


“My parents loved you.”


“No they didn’t, not the way they loved you, not like a real daughter. But you, you loved me like a real sister and the only happy memories I have are the ones I share with you.”


“Camelott,” Maddy replied. “You were everything I ever wanted in a sister.”


“So Mary hasn’t stolen your heart with her little cute face and baby talk.”


“She’s a bit beyond baby talk. She’s 5.”


“Yeah, but she’s not a messed up 13 year old who doesn’t know if she’s going or coming.”


“It doesn’t matter, no one could replace you.”


Then Cam leaned down and kissed her. Full on the lips. Maddy didn’t seem to resist at first, laying still as the lips touched her own. Something else took over and the next thing Cam knew, she pushed for more from the soft flesh below her. Her tongue invaded Maddy’s mouth and it was then she got a response and not a positive one.


The very shocked Maddy sat up and pushed her away.


“Cam, what are you doing?”


“I was just… I was… I don’t know,” Cam said brushing her hair out her face. “I’m totally sorry. I didn‘t plan…”


Maddy was still so shocked she couldn’t speak. She was looking at Cam as if she didn’t know her and Cam couldn’t take that. So she got up off the bed, ran back down to the second floor, exited through the window (Mary was sleeping), and ran off down the street.


Her intentions in coming here hadn’t been to kiss Maddy, but she had and now she felt like she lost her. Everything had felt so right, until the moment the lips touched. At that moment, she knew she didn‘t belong here anymore. Maddy had a perfectly normal life with a white picket fence and a cute as a button little sister. She had no use for the 13 year old street trash in that life. So she had to get out of her life and she had to get out of it fast.



Cam slipped past the borded up doorway of the abandoned house where she, Marcus, and Tricia were staying. She fell on the old mattress she had been sleeping on and the tears she’d been holding in just pored from her eyes. She didn’t know if the other two were there, she didn’t really care. But a few minutes into it, she felt a warm body sit down beside her.


Cam hated to look weak, but she couldn’t hide the sobbing no matter how hard she tried, so she didn’t try. Tricia handed her the bottle of beer she had been drinking.


“Take a few sips, it’ll help,” Tricia said. Cam took it and sat up. “I’ve seen you get your ass whipped and not cry,” Tricia continued as she ran her hands through Cam’s hair. “You alright?”


“No,” Cam said. “I saw Maddy.”


“And she’d forgotten about you?”


“No,” Cam said sniffing as she pushed away the tears with her sleeve, trying to put up the brave front she usually carried so well. “I loved her Trish. I just wanted to show her. I didn’t mean to scare the shit out of her.”


“What do you mean? What did you do to scare her?”


“I guess it don’t matter if I tell you. I kissed her.”


“Like kiss your grandma kiss or–”


“Like you kiss Marcus.”


“Oh. You really swing that way?”


“Yes, it turns out I’m a freak,” Cam said sitting up. “I mean I suspected, but I really don’t think about it too much to be honest. Too much other shit on my mind.”


“You’re not a freak. It’s cool if you’re gay. I don’t hate you and I’m sure Marcus won’t.”


“I don’t want to discuss this with Marcus,” Cam said disgusted. “If you hadn’t caught me in a weak moment I probably wouldn’t have told you.”


“Well I’m glad you did? If Maddy can’t deal, she never really cared about you. Now you know who your real family is. It’s me and Marcus. We got your back.” Tricia brushed a lock of hair out her eyes making Cam focus in on her gaze. “And if you kissed me, the last thing I woulda done is send you away.”


Tricia leaned forward and because she wanted to feel something, because she wanted to feel anything at this moment, she kissed Tricia. The satisfying result was that Tricia kissed her back. To feel loved and wanted, to just feel anything felt good, so she let it happen.





But what Cam didn’t know is that Maddy was feeling bad for letting her leave the way she did. About two seconds after she was gone, she was cursing herself for not asking her to stop so they could talk about what happened. They were sisters, too much so to kiss that way, but she loved her. She never wanted her to think otherwise. Instead she’d let her run away upset and now Cam was alone out there in the world with no one to depend on.


Maddy climbed down from the attic, climbed out Mary’s bedroom window and down the ladder. She’d looked up and down the street for Cam, but she wasn’t there.


Sadly, she returned to the house through her little sister’s room and got caught by her parents (who she quickly lied to about her exploits). Then she headed to her room with them yelling at her, but she didn’t really care. She tossed and turned in her bed all night, because thoughts of Cam out their thinking she hated her kept infecting her dreams. So she got up and poured her feelings out in a letter. She just kept writing until it was all out. And then she slept a little better, but she knew she wouldn’t rest well until the letter was in Cam’s hands.




That weekend, Maddy went up to the social services office and found Cam’s social worker. Mr. Davis wasn’t there, so Maddy camped outside his cubical until he came in. He walked right past her, possibly thinking she belonged to another worker.


“Mr. Davis?” Maddy said standing up when she saw him sit down at his desk.


“Yes Miss…”


“Harris, Madeline Harris. My sister… well you’re her worker.”


“Your sister?” he questioned, raising an eyebrow. “Am I your worker too?”


“Well, she’s not my biological sister. She was my foster sister a few years ago. Anyway, she came to see me a few nights ago…”


“Did she threaten you? Try to steal from you?”


“No,” Maddy replied offended. “Something bad did happen… well not really bad but…it’s not anything to get her in trouble. But she might think I don’t want to see her ever again and I don’t want her thinking that.”


“What’s her name?”


“Camille, Camille Palmer,” Maddy said.


Mr. Davis looked for the file and found it within a few minutes.


“She’s a runaway,” Mr. Davis said. “I just checked in with her foster mother. She and the other two, Patricia Martin and Marcus Stewart aren’t anywhere to be found. I can’t help you.”


“But she needs to get this letter,” Maddy begged.


“Madeline, your parents were probably right to let her go. She’s a notorious trouble maker.”


“That’s why she needs this letter, because people think that’s all there is too her. She’s not just a‘troublemaker’. She’s a person Mr. Davis, a great person. She’s just mixed up. And she needs me and maybe I need her too,” Maddy reached into her bag and pulled out a letter. She handed it to Mr. Davis. “Listen, here’s a copy of the letter I wrote for her. Please, if she turns up at all, can you make sure she gets it.”


Mr. Davis sighed. “I’ll do my best.” He stuck the letter in Cam’s file. “But no promises.”


“Okay,” Maddy replied. It was good enough.


Maddy left the social worker with the hopes her letter would reach its proper owner.


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