Cara Mitchell is 14 years old, she has no family and no friends. Cara lost everything a few years ago when her parents both died in a war. A couple months later her younger brother Dean was taken from her, no explanation. They just took him away. Over the course of a couple of months Cara had truly lost everything, even her pet fish Zorro who was eaten by a stray cat that snuck into her house. She had been taken in by an orphanage but was never adopted. Cara had lived at that orphanage for a year until finally one glorious day tall men in black suits came to take her away. At first she was excited, thinking she was finally going to be adopted but her heart sank as it was revealed that these people had other ideas. They approached her asking if she wanted to join the project Planet B. For a few years people on Earth had been aware that there was another habitable planet out there but the only things that had ever touched its surface were some drones that still roam the planet today. N.A.S.A. was looking for people to take the one way trip to this new planet. They told Cara that she had been chosen for her survival skills and the fact that should wouldn’t really be leaving anything behind. In other words they chose her because she had nothing to lose. It wasn’t hard for Cara to choose, it only took a minute of thought before she accepted their offer. The N.A.S.A. representatives took Cara and some other poor unfortunate charity cases from all over the world to their secret base in Bermuda to train them for the challenges that lay ahead. They practiced maneuvering in space suits and learned how to fix any problem they might encounter. The training had started with 150 recruits and ended with only 90. Some people just couldn’t take the pressure and dropped out, but Cara wasn’t one of those people. She trained hard and soon was one of the best recruits they had. The people from N.A.S.A. told everyone that they would take off one New Year’s day. They had only two weeks left to finish training.
Life was boring at the base. Everyone spent most of their time training and learning about this new planet. Early morning eleven days until launch the officials handed everyone a piece of paper and a pen.
“What’s this?” asked Shelly, who was one of two friends she had here.
“By signing this form you are saying that you understand that this is a one way trip. It also means that after you sign there is no backing out.”
Everyone was hesitant to sign. After that there were only 81 people were left.
In the final week of training everyone mostly sat around and watched movies about space. Cara, Shelly and their friend Liam were bored by the movies and spent most of their time writing messages in a secret code Shelly had created. It consisted of an arrangements and dots. Shelly, Liam and Cara all agreed to use it in space whenever they could. For once in her life Cara was happy, she finally had friends who understood her.
It was three days before launch when the officials brought all the recruits news. Each one of them would be granted one wish before they left. A lot of people wanted to go on a fancy vacation with what was left of their family, others wanted to get together with some friends one last time. Shelly had gone back to London to visit her friends and Liam hadn’t decided yet. Cara had not decided where she was going yet. She had no friends to visit, no family left to love… except her brother. She didn’t know where he had gone but Cara was sure that the people who had brought her here could find him for her. Cara approached a tall man across the room.
“I would like to visit my brother,” she said.
“That’s nice, why are telling me?”
“Because I need your help, I don’t where he is,” Cara said sadly
“What’s his name?”
“Dean Mitchell,” She said
“I’ll look into that, you stay here Cara.” And then he walked away.
After an hour of waiting the man returned.
“We’ve found Dean. He’s living in Boston right now with his adopted family; there is a plane outside that is ready to take you there.”
“Thank you sir,” Cara said and with that she headed out the back door.
The plane was small but nice. The outside was an off-white but the inside was fully furnished with comfy red seats and shiny wooden tables. It was just Cara and the pilot on the plane so she spent most of her time looking out the window. Cara was a little nervous, the only other time she had been on a plane was when she was seven. Everything about the plane slowly came back to her, the rush you get at take off and the feeling of power as you glide above the rest of the world. Cara peered out her window watching the rest of the world get smaller as she passed through the clouds. She pressed her head against the window. Cara was exhausted and fell asleep on the plane.
Cara woke up hours later. Someone was shaking her. Cara thought it was the pilot but when she opened her eyes she saw Liam staring at her.
“What are you doing here Liam?”
“Running away,” he whispered
“Running away! Why are y-”
“Keep your voice down Cara, the pilot doesn’t know I’m here.”
“You can’t run away! You signed the paper,” Cara said, this time in a whisper
“Cara I think that there is more to this project than we are aware of.”
“What do you mean?”
“I think they’re using us as bait.”
“I overheard someone talking about other lifeforms on the planet.”
“So they lied to us.”
“Yes, I warned Shelly and a few other people. We have to run away Cara.”
“How?” Cara asked. Liam smiled and pulled out two parachutes.
“Don’t worry, it’s pretty easy. We have to jump soon though.”
“How about now?” Cara said, wanting to get it over with as soon as possible.
“Sounds like a plan.” Liam helped Cara strap the parachute onto her back.
Liam and Cara approached the door and tried to open it but it occurred to them that it was locked.
“What do we do now Liam?”
“Don’t worry.” Liam said with a smile as he pulled out a strange tool from his pack. “I’ll break down the door with this.” And with that he began to hit the door until it fell limp onto one side.
“NOW!” Liam screamed. Cara took a deep breath and jumped. The air whipped through her hair and the cold air bit at her face. Cara fell freely through the air until the parachute kicked in and jerked her up. Cara began to slowly glide to the ground. She looked up and saw Liam right behind her and the plane turning around in the distance. Cara was far too worried about the plane coming back for her and Liam to notice the ground coming closer to her. Liam warned her but it was too late; Cara hit the ground and fell flat on her face. A second later she heard Liam smoothly land.
"Are you hurt?"
"I don't think so," she replied
"Good," said Liam and then he started laughing
"It's not funny!" Cara said defensively
"Yes it is!"
"Whatever," Cara said rolling her eyes
"We need to keep going, that plane isn't coming back alone," Liam said
"What do you mean?"
"That plane is come back with more people to hunt us down," Liam said calmly
"We better get going then," Cara said and with that Liam and Cara set off.
Cara and Liam had landed in the middle of a desert. They both decided to head south because the plane was coming from the north and they didn't want to get caught. Cara and Liam ran silently as darkness fell. The ran for miles until they were confident that they were safe.
“What now?” Cara asked
“We lay low with the rest of the runaways. Were supposed to meet up with Shelly and the others someplace about 15 miles east. We’ll leave tomorrow,” Liam said
“Okay, goodnight,” Cara said
“Night.” he replied
As Cara lay on the cold desert sand she realized that even though this wasn’t ideal she was happy. Maybe she wasn’t with her brother but her new friends were all the family she needed. maybe she wasn’t going to discover a new planet but at least she was saved from possibly being attacked by aliens. Cara thought about everything that had changed for the better over the past few weeks until she fell asleep.
“CARA WAKE UP!” It was still dark outside but Cara could still see the look on Liam’s face, something bad was happening.
“What’s happening?” Cara asked, her eyes still adjusting
"N.A.S.A., they’ve found us! We have to run,” Liam said pulling Cara to her feet. They ran as fast as they could, occasionally looking back at the shiny black cars pursuing them. They ran until they came to a gap in the desert.
“What do we do now! The gap is too wide to jump across,” Cara said out of breath
“We could-” Liam was suddenly cut off. Cara turned around and saw that a bunch of men had caught Liam. Cara tried to scream but no noise left her mouth. Liam struggled and tried his best to escape the man's grasp but his efforts were pointless.
"Cara come with us. Don't get yourself in more trouble!" Said the man holding Liam.
"Why should I go with you?! You lied to me; you lied to everyone!"
"What are you talking about Cara?" Asked one of the men slowly advancing towards Cara
"I know what you really intend to do with all the recruits!" Shortly after Cara said that all the men exchanged the same look. Cara became nervous as everyone moved towards the edge of the gap, she looked down it and saw nothing but darkness.
"Cara come with us peacefully or we will force you to return to the base." Said one man emerging from behind one of the cars. Cara recognised man instant. It was the kind man who had helped her find Dean. For a moment she felt betrayed but soon realized that he was no different from the rest. Cara felt foolish for thinking he was different. Everyone was still except for Liam who still tried his best to escape while telling Cara to run. Cara knew that either way she was going to die. She had to decide if she wanted to die alone in space or if she wanted to die her way here and now. Her choice seemed clear.
"It has been an amazing adventure, but unfortunately it must come to an end," Cara threw herself into the gap. For it moment it felt like flying. For a moment it felt parachuting. For a moment it was painful but then she was free.