My heart was beating fast. My mind was racing. I didn’t know how much longer I could keep this up. I glanced at the rear mirror and saw that they were getting closer.
Looking ahead, I see a hedge of bushes on my right that led to a different road. I glanced behind again and noticed that they were trailing me and their lights indicated that they expected me to turn to the left.
They obviously expected me to turn left because there was no road to turn right since the hedge of bushes were there.
I bite my lip. Was it possible to do it? It was definitely crazy and illegal.
Then my heart filled with hatred. My whole life l had been framed for all sorts of illegal stuff. What’s the difference if I just did another illegal thing?
With that thought in my head, l had made my decision.
Reaching closer to the hedge, l quickly faked to the left then swiftly turned right. I pressed down the accelerator, and jolted my car to jump above the hedge of bushes. I closed my eyes, not sure I would make it.
The few seconds that the car was airborne, were like hours. It was so alarming, l could hear my heart beating.
My eyes are still closed for that few seconds, until I feel the car touch the gratifying ground. I was so relieved and thankful that it went well.
The only damage that happened was that the bumper was bashed a bit. I took another glance behind and saw no one.
I was relieved but I knew it wouldn’t be long until they were back on my track. I calmed down and remembered the real reason I went driving before I was chased.
My parents were both drunkards and always lashed out at people. I was no exception. I still had scars from the worst nights.
Everyday was worse. My parents struggled to send me to school. In fact, they only sent me to school because the government said so.
At least those days they still had a job and could afford to send me to school. But now, when I finally got into college they had to lose their job and ended up in prison.
Why prison? Turns out, they had been stealing money from people and gambling it away.
Don’t get me wrong, l loved my parents but they never showed any love back. Now that they were in prison, l felt sorry for them but I was relieved I won’t get hit anymore.
But I still needed them. Without them, I wouldn’t be able to get into college. I wouldn’t be able to become a doctor. My dream job.
I always focused on my studies in school. I never got involved with all the people around me who were more interested in fashion, dressing up and going to malls then getting into college.
I was always a straight A student.This was because after looking at my drunk parents, it made me want to excel and become successful.
I never talked to anyone and kept to myself. I was an introvert. Despite having no friends, I always looked forward to school. It was a place where I could put my good brains to work and really study.
A place where people respected me ( well, at least the teachers). I always hated going home because I would get beaten up by my drunk parents every night.
By now, I was so occupied, thinking about my whole life, I didn’t hear the sirens from behind. Great. They had caught up.
My heart started racing once again. Looking ahead, it was just me and them racing across a deserted long winded highway. I had no escape again. I pressed hard on the accelerator and zoomed ahead.
Knowing it was going to be a long way ahead, l started thinking again. If l was a law abiding girl, having straight A’s, focusing on studies, how did l end up like this, racing for my life?
I knew l always avoided that question. I did know the answer, but sometimes, truth hurts too much.
But l knew the longer l evaded the answer to the question, the longer I’d stay in this state. I took a deep breath and let the thoughts I was restraining flow into my mind.
A few months ago, when my parents went to jail, they told the police that they never stole money, that it was all me. I stole the money. I gambled it away. I was the bad influence.
In the end, they managed to convince the police that I was the bad one. So their jail sentence was reduced from ten years to five years.
When I came back from school, I quickly figured it all out. My parents shot me a glance that said if you don’t go along with it, we’ll find a way to destroy you forever.
I knew the right thing was to tell the truth, but they were my parents. No matter what parents you have, it’s difficult to say no.
So I went along with it. Since I was twenty by then, I should have gone to jail with them. Luckily, I managed to escape from the scene.
I spent a few months begging for money and food instead of studying at a college. Not to mention, escaping from the police a few times. But those times were just avoiding them. This was the real deal.
They were literally chasing me. Faced with the reality, it jolted me back to where I was.
Surprisingly, I managed to still stay on the road considering I had not got my drivers license yet. And even more astoundingly, the police were even further back. I knew I had the advantage. I laid back and continued driving.
I was always the quiet girl, who was afraid to talk back and kept to myself.
The girl who always just studied hard. And now, I was the girl who lived on the streets and was on the run run from the police. I pushed that uncomfortable feeling away.
I felt gleeful I was driving away. I knew I would lose the police any second.
Suddenly a picture on my left caught my glance. I was stunned. What in the world!? It was a picture that showed my face which was streaked with dirt. The caption underneath it wrote : Dangerous girl on the loose. Huge sum of money if captured.
What had I become? Just a few months on the streets and I became a criminal on the loose. Was this what people thought of me? Was this me? I was just a quiet girl who loved studying. Had this what had become of me? Was I always going to be the person in the picture?
Deep inside, I knew I wasn’t. This was all because of my parents. I went with the lie because I had no other choice. Right now I could make a choice. A choice that would affect the rest of my life.
Taking the biggest breath ever, I halted to the side of the road and waited for the police cars to park beside me. A grim policeman came over and said,
‘Ashley Blayton, you are under arrest. If you don’t come, we will take you by force.’
I smiled back. “I’ll come. Happily. I have some explaining to do.”