I woke up in my cold, dark house. It must be early. I stepped into my parents’ room and was surprised to find them still sleeping.
“Mom?” I asked. “Dad?” No answer. I checked the time on my watch and realized that it was 1:00 in the morning. As I walked out of their room, I closed the door behind me slowly so as to not wake them up. I knew I’d never be able to fall back asleep and I didn’t have school today anyway, so I went downstairs to get a snack. The pantry door was stuck closed, which wasn’t much of a problem as it just makes it tougher to open. I eventually managed to open it and grab my biscuits. After that, I opened my fridge, feeling the cool breeze from it, and took the butter. As soon as I set down my biscuit, I lost my appetite. I don’t like it here. I never have and I never will. I screamed uncontrollably, forgetting that I was trying to stay quiet. I heard angry groans coming from upstairs. Obviously I woke up my parents. I just laid on the cold, wooden floor as my mother and father stumbled down the stairs.
“Rob!” they screamed. “Where are you?!?” I waited, not answering their constant screaming of my name.
“Robert Johnson! Get over here right now!” my mother repeated. I got up, but rather than walking towards my parents for another lecture, I walked out the back door, and off into the small forest behind our house.
I always liked exploring the woods up here in the mountains. It was always a peaceful place where I could be alone. I enjoyed the smell of the pine trees and the view from the mountains looking down into the rivers was amazing. I sat down in my usual spot, looking into the rushing water in the river rapids. I could hear the birds chirping and the wind blowing against the trees. I sat here for a long time, as I usually did. I heard some rustling behind me and quickly got up, ready to run. Could my parents know where I am? I thought. As a figure came out of the trees onto the ledge where I am, I realized that it was just my friend Amethyst. We both hate it here in this town. We want to leave. The forest was the only place we could come to escape reality for a while.
“Hey,” she said, smiling. “What’s up?” Not wanting to answer, I sat down and stared into the palms of my hands.
“Not much,” I replied, not even glancing at her. It was obvious that I was lying. She rolled her eyes.
“Was I actually supposed to believe that?” she asked jokingly. I didn’t reply, but instead sat down on the cold, soft ground, looking down into the river again. She sat down next to me. I could feel her soft, warm hand on my shoulder.
“Oh c’mon,” she said. “It can’t be that bad.” That was true. I was over exaggerating. I reached for my phone and realized I didn’t have it anymore. I had dropped it in the river after trying to take a picture of a squirrel on a rock.
“What time is it?” I asked, rubbing my forehead. “I’m tired.” I stepped up and started to walk away, but Amethyst followed me. I turned around.
“Why are you following me?” I asked.
“Oh, sorry,” she said, walking away. I stepped into my house, bracing for the lecture I was sure would come. Yet nothing happened. They must’ve fallen back asleep. I started to walk upstairs, being as quiet as my body would allow. I slowly pushed open the door to my room and stepped inside. I closed the door, locking it. I got into bed as I rubbed my eyes. Just as I was about to fall asleep, I heard my door being unlocked. Uh-oh. My parents burst in with angry looks on their faces.
“Robert!” My mother started. “I’m very disappointed in you.” Aren’t you always, I said in my head.
“You know you’re not supposed to be up this late and you know that you’re not supposed to leave without permission!” she screamed.
“Well maybe I’d stay here if I enjoyed being here!” I snapped back. “Or at least if I could stand being here for more than a few hours at a time!” I got up, ran out of the room, down the stairs, and out the back door. I ran back into the woods and onto the ledge that I sat on earlier. I layed down, closing my eyes. Finally I can get some rest. I thought of how amazing it would be away from here, somewhere where I could be alone. I could feel the cold breeze scrape against my face, as I fell asleep, smiling.
I woke up to the sound of a clock ticking rather loudly, but as I opened my eyes, I saw nothing. Am I imagining things? I stood up. Tick-tock, tick-tock. It repeated over and over in my head. I fell to the ground on my hands and knees. I looked up to see a dark, hooded figure, who quickly scurried back into the forest. Just like that, the ticking was gone. I looked into the backpack that I left here earlier and pulled out a map. As I stared at the map, I realized how close I was to the neighboring city. I could actually escape. I quickly ran away towards Amethyst’s house.
I ran up and knocked on Amethyst’s door. I stood there and waited for a few seconds, but got impatient and just opened the door myself. Surprised to see nobody there, I started to walk upstairs.
“Amethyst? You here?” I asked. Eh, she’s probably not home. I started to walk back downstairs when I heard a voice from upstairs.
“Wait!” said the voice, which I guessed was Amethyst. I walked back up the stairs.
“Hey,” I said. “What took so long?” Her door stayed shut.
“Sorry,” she replied. “You just woke me up. I’ll get out now.” Amethyst opened her door and walked out.
“Okay so what do you want?” she asked somewhat impolitely, rubbing her eyes.
“We can escape this place,” I started. “We’re not far away from the closest city. Only a thirty minute walk.”
“Wait let me get this straight…” she replied annoyed. “We could’ve left this whole time? Well what are we waiting for? Let’s go!” Amethyst and I ran as quickly as we could out of the front door and into the wild.
When we got deeper into the woods, we realized it would surely be tough to get through to the nearest city. It was freezing and dark. I could hear rustling in the nearby bushes.
“What’s that?” I whispered to Amethyst. “Is that you?” I didn’t get a response. I looked behind me where I thought Amethyst was and I couldn’t see her there. Panicked, I looked around everywhere, desperately trying to find her.
“Amethyst!” I screamed. Still nothing besides the eerie sound of the wilderness. I was far from civilization. I had no idea which way was which. Worse, I was all alone. I would surely die out here.
“Goodbye,” I whispered into the silence of the forest. I layed on the ground to await my final rest.