2050: part two

Meagan took a quick look around us before leading me into the nearest divot in the wall. She whispered, “Three days ago, I was walking back to the room after my last assignment had finished up late. I accidentally took a wrong turn, and- well, you know how easy it is to get lost in this place. I was wandering around for like, ten minutes, looking for a regulator to ask what hallway I was in. Turns out there are more kids who wander around the halls than regulators these days.

“I turned the corner of whatever hallway I was in and saw three boys and two girls surrounding a section of the wall. They spotted me before i could turn away and make a run for it, so I tried playing it cool-”

“Are you going to get to the point, because we have assignments-” I interrupted, but a boy bumped into my shoulder, making me almost tumble over Meagan. People were starting to get suspicious; we had to move.

Meagan took me by the shoulders and took one last glance around. “One of the boys was Roman. And they were surrounding a vent… a vent large enough to crawl through.” She paused and looked down. “They were planning to escape tonight, if everything went as planned… They invited me to come with them, Anne. I told them yes, but only if you would agree to come, as well.”

I felt every last bit of color drain from my face. I shouldn’t know this. We shouldn’t be having this conversation. “Meagan…”

“I was going to tell you tonight and ask you to come, but after what happened with Roman, I knew the whole plan was botched, so I just… didn’t mention it.”

Something inside of my stomach started to turn, though there wasn’t enough food in there for anything to come up. I started to walk away, at a loss of words, but Meagan grabbed my arm and pulled me back. I just stood there, eyes wide with anger.

When I finally found my voice, I whispered, “We could have gotten out of this… this hellhole, couldn't we?” I didn’t expect those words any more than she did, based on the surprised look that crept over her face.

“Would you have gone?” She asked.

“I mean…” I stopped. A regulator was looking right at us, talking into his intercom. His other hand was unclipping his gun holster. “We’ve got to move. Come on.”

“What the heck-”

“Just shut up and walk!” We worked our way through the slimming crowd of kids. Quickly, I glanced up at the digital clocks lining the hallways: Two minutes until assignments. We had to get there before the regulators caught up. Without looking at Meagan, I said, “There’s a regulator following us. Just keep your eyes forward; don’t look back.”

“Would you have gone, Anne?” She really wanted to know.

I didn’t respond right away. Honestly? I didn’t have a clue what I would have done if she asked me a few days ago-- before Roman was thrown out of the institution. I didn’t even know how I would have reacted if I was asked the question on the spot.

But after what they did to Roman…

I kept my eyes trained on the tall redhead's back that was right in front of me. “I think… I think we need to find those kids from group twelve and get the heck out of this place.”

It only took one glance over my shoulder to see the pure joy that overtook her thin face. “Thank you,” she whispered, then continued forward.

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