Taking Off The Mask

I'm really getting into chain stories. I had an idea to write this while in the shower, and then it slowly evolved from there. Mind you, this is a very random story that includes religion, so, if in any way, you feel offended...


(just kidding ;) )

Chapter 2

Regina Woodall On The Run

by: Deceit
I grew up as an only child in a Minneapolis suburb, raised by my two not-so-kind parents. They were both religious Moranist reverends.They would take me to Minneapolis's secret underground Avnakane every day and beat me if I did not sing along to their stupid prayers. They made me kill my first traitor much earlier than the designated "Aranai Gura" day, which is pretty much a coming-of-age ceremony which takes place when a Moranist is about thirteen, and is composed of killing an imprisoned traitor and taking their skin.

Eventually, I couldn't take any more of those meaningless prayers. My sore back could no longer take my parents' beatings. I didn't want to kill any more innocent people that were just doing the right thing - exposing this dreadful religion - and wearing their skin.

However, it was nearly impossible to escape Moranism (and it still is). Those that managed to were eventually captured and killed shortly. And then their skin would be worn on the face of their killer. However, since I concluded that death would be better than having to stay a member of the stupid cult, I decided to give it a shot.

One day, my parents take me out to get some groceries at a large store near the edge of town. Our Anvakane hasn't been doing so well, and could no longer supply us with food, so we needed to get it for ourselves. I see this as the perfect opportunity to run away - it is always crowded at that store, and once my parents were in a crowded area, I could bolt for the door!

With me, I have the largest purse I was able to find, and earlier today I stuffed it with clothing, my father's wallet, a bus pass, matches, and my phone (which I reset and removed anything that would allow someone to track me with). All I have to do is wait, and hope for the best.

Everything is going smoothly. I am now waiting in line with my mother and father in line at the cash register. We are surrounded by messy magazine stands and shelves full of cheap gum packs to our left and right, and there are many people in front of and behind us. I was getting ready to make a run for it when my mother puts her hand on my shoulder.

"Why do you have such a big purse?" she asks me in her thick Romanian accent.

Oh, no. My plan is falling apart, just like that.

"Because I like it," I reply, hoping that was a good answer. "It's pretty."

"Regina," she says, looking me in the eye. Her gaze seems to burn into me. "You never care about purses. What is going on?"

I do not respond. Instead, I glance around, hoping that there was some way to escape before it was too late. The line is moving quickly. There are only two people in front of us now. Fortunately, one of them was as almost as wide as the space itself, so it would be difficult to get past her. If she could only move...

My father realizes what was going on between my mother and I. "What do you have such a big purse for?" he demands.

My heart throbs. They wouldn't kill their own daughter, would they?

"Regina, open your mouth and answer the questions!" my mother hisses.

Then, a miracle happens. The fat lady's glasses fall off her huge nose and onto the ground, the glass shattering into a million pieces.. She lets out a gasp of shock, and bends down to pick them up, leaving me just enough space to escape. I bolt, accidentally kicking the lady in the shin as I run by.

"Sorry!" I yell back at her, racing towards the glass doors.

"REGINA WOODALL! COME BACK HERE RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!" my mother screams, shaking her fists and cursing. My parents try to get around the lady, but she is back in the middle of the line, picking up the pieces of glass that fell, leaving no room for my parents to chase me. However, they do not give up yet. They try pushing the lady out of the way, but to no avail.

"Stop that!" the lady cries. "Don't touch me like that! If you take something from me I'll call the police!"

"Just get out of our way!" my father yells at her, kicking her in her other shin and causing her to fall into the gum stand. She sends chocolate bars and TicTac boxes flying.

The grocery store is in chaos. The cashiers try calming everyone down, but it is no use. People are running around in a frenzy, fearing the said "pickpockets" who knocked a lady down. But my parents are chasing me, furious. I run as fast as I can out the doors and down the sidewalk. I head east, towards the forest merely a few miles away that surrounds the town. My legs are sore from running, but I do not stop. If I do, it will all be over.

And then I trip on the sidewalk.

I feel the gravel dig into my knee. I smell the metallic tang of blood. My parents are catching up - they are less than fifteen feet behind me. Everything that was in my purse is now scattered around on the sidewalk.

I can feel tears forming in my eyes. My knee hurts more than all my parents' beatings put together. It is as if someone threw a hundred tiny daggers at my knee, and I couldn't get them out.

But there was no time to think about that. I needed to escape - fast! I grab the wallet and the bus pass, and run as if my life depended on it. Which it does.

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