Every year, one person is sent to the moon. This year, though you hid in terror, it is your turn to enter the rocket. You had always believed it to be a silly tradition anyway, for how serious could an old, yellowed and withered contract be? You could hardly even make out the words anymore. And besides, what was the point of following this tradition when it wasn’t even your country's main religion anymore? But you knew not to speak your skepticism aloud. You knew that anyone with the slightest bit of doubt in the goddess would be sent in the rocket too.
Suddenly, you heard a bang at the front door, followed by pounding footsteps searching all around the house. Panic started climbing up your throat, trying to manifest in a scream. You hugged your knees tighter to your chest, praying for them not to find you as a silent tear streamed down your cheek. All of this because you were a Jenson. The last name you had cursed for years. You had always known the day would come - but you had never expected it to be so soon. You had been comforted by the fact you were a promising student and an excellent study. Surely you would be too valuable to simply throw away. However, that clearly wasn’t enough.
All that mattered was the fact that you were a Jenson and that your stupid how ever many greats aunt Iris had angered the goddess of the moon so many centuries ago. That is why every year one person from the Jenson family was sent to the moon, for the goddess had stated that if they did not do as she said, she would reign terror on everyone in your country. She cursed you. Because of this, no one had ever given you a chance. They would look at you in disgust for what your ancestor had done, for her practically damning the entire country.
That is why for so many years you hadn’t even told people your last name. Whenever anyone asked, you would quickly make up a story about how you had just remembered you had forgotten to feed your cat. You knew that they would never look at you the same way again. And now was the time. You were being sent up to the moon to die.
Think happy thoughts, think happy thoughts, you told yourself, trying not to freak out. You couldn't afford getting scared and risk compromising your location. But no one can hide from the truth, for just a few moments later, you felt a pair of burly arms pick you up from your hiding spot, scaring you nearly out of your wits. “I found the Jenson,” he announced, squeezing you so hard around your middle you felt you could hardly breathe. Thankfully, he soon released you, though he slapped a pair of handcuffs tightly around your wrists. He then, with his other associates, loaded you into their van, bringing you to the ceremony.
You see, just before the rocket was sent up every year, there was a celebration for the goddess not killing everyone, ending with the Jenson boarding the rocket and fireworks lighting up the sky. A ceremony of you leaving. Yet another perk of being born a Jenson. You could hear the murmurs of the crowd from behind the stage curtain, their whispers igniting your earlier thought to resurface. This was really it. The day you were going to die. And this time, there was no place to hide. No chance of survival.
However, your thoughts of doom and gloom were interrupted by the curtain opening, the spotlight landing on you with your hands behind your back and tape over your mouth. You quickly surveyed the crowd, taking in all of their faces, feeling a sharp pang in your stomach when you noticed all of the familiar faces. Janet, your 9th grade English teacher, Genie, the sweet old lady next door who always baked you goodies, Henry, your childhood best friend and finally, your older sister, Melodie. The last one definitely hurt the most. Especially the fact that instead of her crying or mouthing to you that it would all be alright, she was clapping and smiling along with the others without a care in the world. What you wouldn’t give to be adopted.
Eventually you had to turn your head away, for you felt that if you didn’t do so you would burst out crying. The mayor of your state haughtily stepped on his spot behind the podium to give his annual speech for the public, making sure to exaggerate the lengths that they took to capture you and the heroism shown by his entire team when they set out to make you come out of hiding. They did not even have the decency to give you any last words. And at last, it was time. You could hear the cheers and claps grow from behind you as the security guards loaded you into the rocket. To them it was all just a silly tradition. You doubted they even understood the magnitude of the situation.
However, at that time it did not matter what they thought about the scene that had just taken place, for it was at that time where you were strapped and buckled into your seat and the tape on your face was ripped off rather harshly by the mayor himself. His smug face was the last thing you saw before the rocket’s door was slammed shut. You squeezed your eyes shut as you heard the muffled chants of the crowd, feeling your heart pound out of your chest with every number spoken. Five, four, three, two, one. Finally, after what seemed like hours, the rocket took off into space, making you take a sharp breath as the rocket began to make its journey to leave Earth. You could still the cheers and fireworks booming behind you as they celebrated you being gone.