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The Workers

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Should I really do this? I was squeezing out my of my sleeping places window. What if there really is no other cities? Well, I would rather be out there than here for the rest of my life! I dropped without making a sound. I’ve been practicing my escape for the last 3 months, ever since me and Myles heard the stories of the other city. But, Myles didn’t want to come anymore, “Too Risky” he says. 
 

I slipped through the dull, sleeping city saying goodbye to nearly every building that I passed. I knew these streets so well, after every day working here in the blazing heat. I knew every turn, every shortcut.
 
 At last, I made it to The Fence.
 
Now, this is the hard part. I hadn’t ever been able to practice this.
 
“Just disable the security wire, and climb.” I uttered. I crept towards the wire. Snap! The wire was disabled, easier than she thought. I glanced up at the huge brick wall that all the workers called ‘The Fence.’ It looked




like it was about to crumble with age, Holes all over the place.
 
 
Although it was massive, the big structure would be easy to climb. I clutched a brick that was standing out and began upward. I saw the shiny glitter of the metal plate at the top of ‘The Fence’. I had been warned that this was another security device.
 

I made it to the top, and trying not to touch the metal, I inched across it. Almost at the edge, just needs one more step, BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! I set off the security alarm!
 
 
No way! This is not going to end well! I can’t climb all the way down this before they catch me, what do I do?
 

I leaped of the crumbling brick. I hope that was the right decision. The next two seconds of my life were in complete terror. Thump, I rolled. Lying on the ground I new I had to run. Unwillingly, I pulled myself up. And ran, ran forever (it seemed like) until next thing I knew, I was panting on the ground. Every bit of energy sucked out of me.
 
 

I made it! But suddenly I realized, Now what do I do?
 
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
 
This is not the place I wanted to be. Out here, alone. When I created my plan, I didn’t even think about what would happen after I escaped. I only focused on getting out.
 
If only I listened to Myles. “It’s not gonna work.” He always said. “Even if you do get out, what will you do after that?” Why don’t I ever believe Myles? He is always right! I’d rather still be a worker,  even in that horrible place. It’s better than this. Maybe, if Myles comes out here, with me, it would work out. I’ve heard of others who’d escaped, and they found whole other cities out here! But no one has ever done it alone. Why did I come here without Myles? I just wanted to get out of that place, I didn’t realize this was worse.
 
But, I can always try to help Myles escape, that is, if he wants to. Well, I’ll figure that out tomorrow. For now I just need some rest, and a fire, it’s cold out here!
 
But, all i see is, well, pretty much nothing. No animals even. Just a few trees here and there, dirt, and... yep that’s it. How am I supposed to survive out here? I’ve never even gone camping before!
 
 
I guess I don’t really need a fire, I’ll live..... I think. I slowly relax and drift off to sleep
 
 



? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
 
 
Once upon a time there was a princess named Hayley, that’s me. And then she met a prince. His name was prince Oscar. He lived in town called bubbly ville. When the Prince met Hayley he said, “Hello...............hello?.........Hello?.............Hello?..........Wake up!” Then the world started to shake and the ocean splashed water all over.... wait.... I sprang to my feet. “Who just woke me from my awesome dream!”
 
 
“Uhhhhh sorry,” some girl said holding a water bucket.
 
 
“Hurry up!” someone urged, “Come on, they’re looking for you!”
 
 
He was talking to me. “Who’s looking for me?” I questioned.
 
 
Another person yelled, “Just take her, they are going to see us if we don’t leave now!” They yanked me up and sprinted to the trees.  We took a long hike up and around the mountains. On a hard trail covered in rocks and twigs. I stumbled along, barely keeping up, the people have walked this trail millions of times.
 

After hours over walking nonstop, I could smell the smoke. It stung my eyes. They continued to walk  through thick branches, and then, out of nowhere we emerged into a deep valley. It was hidden to the rest of the world, you could only get there if you knew where you were going. But, I didn’t even know why she was fallowing these strange people, what if they want to kill me? I hope not.
 
 
The valley held cabins all around, people were sitting by the fires, cooking. The dirt streets were littered with children  playing some form of soccer, and pets wrestling with one another. It was so beautiful, no tired workers hauling their tools around. It was what I had always dreamed it would be like. I knew that there was a real town out here!
 
 

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?  ?  ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
 

This place is great! No working, well, if you work, you get payed, and great food!
 
 
“Young lady,” called the leader of the city, “Come with me.” He took me to through the doors of the biggest hut at the center of the lovely town. The place was filled with one large rectangular table, Pretty intimidating.
 
 
The man sat me down and said,  “I am Oscar,” Hmmm.... sounds familiar, just like the name in my dream, “So, young lady, what is your name?”
 
 
“I’m Hayley, it’s nice to meet you.” He was a tall man, and obviously the person n charge. He wore the nicest clothing out of everyone and sat at the tip of the table.
 
 
“So Hayley, how did you know that there was places outside of your city?”
 
 
“Well, we heard a rumor going around the city that someone came and told people about the other cities, I guess that was you guys, and I was sick of being a worker so......,”
 
 
“Hahaha,” the whole room chuckled, “So you call yourselves ‘workers’!”
 
 
“What would you call us?” It seemed like everyone there said all together, “We call you slaves.”
 
 
“Oh...... well, anyways, we made plans to escape the city the instant we heard.”
 

“Who is we?” Oscar questioned.
 
 
“Oh, me and my friend, Myles, we were both workers, I mean, uh, ‘slaves’. But he decided not to come right before I left! He didn’t believe anymore that you guys were out here.” I wish Myles came with me, I want to show him this town. But he’s stuck in the city, poor Myles!
 
 
“Okay that is it!” Oscar announced, “Thank you Hayley, you can go, dinner is at six.”
 
 
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
 
 

I walked around the town, exploring all of huts and walkways. I stepped up on a grassy hill were you could see the whole town from. I sat down on a large stone at the top, watching the kids in the streets play games.
 
 
“Hayley? Is that you?” A voice called.
 
 
I spun around looking for the person who was talking to me. “Lexi?” I said, “You escaped too! The city told us that you died from some virus!” I ran and rapped my arms around her. It was Lexi alright, same blonde hair, same old tennis shoes and jeans. I can’t believe this! This town just gets better and better. I used to be best friends with Lexi, until the city told us she had passed away. But, It turns out, she never even died, just escaped.
 

“Hayley!” Lexi said, she looked worried, “I knew you would get out some day. But, you shouldn’t have come.”
 
“What, why not? It’s great here, isn’t it?”
 
 “Yes it is!” Lexi said while shaking head no.
 
 “Why are you shaking your hea...”
 
 “Shush!” She whispered suddenly and put one finger over her mouth. Lexi then pointed to a bracelet she was wearing.
 
 “I....uh, like your bracelet Lexi.” I said confused. Why is she pointing at her bracelet? That doesn’t make any sense.
 

 “Well, you’ll know what I  mean soon but let’s go do something while your still here!” Lexi grabbed me and pulled me off the hillside. While I’m still here? What is that supposed to mean?
 
 
Lexi ran with me all the way to the towns lake. The water was crystal clear, and the little fish that swam looked so peaceful, so carefree.
 
 
“So, Lexi, why are we here?” I asked. I was answered with a swan dive into the water. “Oh,” I said and decided to jump in after her.
 
 
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
 
 
Ding, Ding, Ding, the dinner bell rang in my ears. “Come on,” Lexi said to me, “Let’s go eat!”
 
 
“Ok!” We walked over to the long wooden tables were the whole town sat. That was the funnest day of my life. I’ve never really done anything just for fun before, I love this place!

I scarfed down my delicious chicken wing and corn on the cob. I completely cleaned my plate, but I was still so hungry. The day before I left the city, I guess I was so excited I didn’t even eat! Hmmm, I wonder if they have dessert?

Right on cue out came fresh out of the oven pie in all different flavor. I get up from the bench and was the first at the dessert table. A lady cut me a slice of my favorite, cherry pie. Now, this town is perfect!

“Lexi! do we always have this good of food?” I asked

“Nope, only when new people come.” Lexi responded. Huh, that’s weird, it doesn’t make since that they would get the new peoples expectations up and then just not do the same thing the next night. And, Lexi has been giving me strange answers lately. Like, she said, that I shouldn’t have come here! Also, she said it wasn’t great here, that was a lie. I wish Lexi would just give me a straight answer.

“We should go to the fire Hayley.” Lexi mentioned. She started walking before I could even respond. I fallowed Lexi to the center of  the town, right by the hut Oscar had taken me to. The fire was huge. Orange, red, and yellow, I’ve never seen such a gigantic fire in my life. The rest of the night we sang songs and danced,  didn’t know the words but it was fun anyways.

“Time to go back to our hut Hayley.”

“Already! It’s only........”  I checked my watch, “Oh yeah it is pretty late. Okay let’s go.” This time I led the way. Lexi had shown me our hut right after we went swimming so I knew exactly were it was. Down the main road, turn left twice, then there it is.

We walked in, and the five other girls that slept here too were already in bed. I quietly stepped over them and made it to our side of the room. We changed into our sleeping clothes and brushed our teeth.

“Lexi, can I ask you something?” I whispered.

“Sure”

“You said that I will know what you mean soon when I first saw you today. Well, what will I know soon?”

“Just wait till tonight,” Lexi said and drifted of to sleep.

There it is, another confusing answer, thanks Lexi! But, tonight? It already is the night. I already waited all day to ask that question.


I’m started to sense something a little weird around this town. Oh well, it’s probably nothing. “Goodnight Lexi,” I said although I knew she was already asleep, then my eyelids fluttered shut.


? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 


Now I know what Lexi was talking about. How I wasn’t going to be here long, and how it really isn’t fun here. They took me, the cities authorities came and took me when I was asleep. Everyone just looked at them like they knew this was going to happen. Why didn’t Lexi warn me? She had to talk all confusingly, and how was I supposed to know what she was talking about? Now I am just confused, why is Lexi still at the town and the city didn’t take her back?

They put me in a white room and strapped a bracelet, just like Lexi’s, on me.

“This bracelet will track you everywhere you go and will hear everything that you say.” Came a commanding voice. He wore a suit and tie, just like everyone else in the room, and his is hair was jet black.

“Why am I the only one, out of everyone that escaped, being taken back to the city?” I said, hoping to get a real answer this time.

“Oh, they don’t get to stay there and have fun,” The man laughed, “They are slaves for that town. See, we set up that little ‘town’ for all of our runaway slaves to go to. Then they stay there until we are ready to come get them. But, we have to make it seem like a good place by serving good food and letting you do whatever you want, so that people like you, Hayley, don’t runaway.

So that’s why Oscar asked me all those questions, to stop others from escaping. And, that’s why Lexi said they only get food when a new person comes! At least they told me what was happening so when I get back to the city I can tell Myles and we could......... Oh wait, I felt the weight of the metal on my wrist. I can’t tell Myles anything!

They took me back to my sleeping place while it was still the middle of the night. The man told me to tell everyone that I couldn’t find another city and that they just found me in the forest.

I woke Myles up and he was very surprised. “What happened?” Myles asked.

“I, couldn’t find anything,” I tried to sound disappointed, “I was just in the wild and then the city authorities found me.” I decided to tell Myles what the man told me to say, so that they wouldn’t suspect anything. But, I have to find a way to tell Myles about the fake city.

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 



I went on doing my work as normal, telling the other workers about my story of when I was in the wild that wasn’t even true.

I always look out to the fence. I can’t believe that I actually found a town out there but it wasn’t even real! I knew it was too good to be true.

I was working in the field with Myles and saw one of the leaders of the city was writing in his notebook. How nice that would be, to be able to write anything you want without this stupid bracelet hearing it.

Wait, that’s it! If I could get a piece of paper, I could tell Myles what really happened. I slipped over to behind the bench, trying to figure out how to get that notebook.

“Hayley, what are you doing?” Myles called. I shoved my pointer finger over my lips. My eyes were fixed on the mans notebook. Myles just shrugged and began working again. I crept closer, forming a plan in my mind.

The man stopped writing, closed his notebook and walked away with it and the pen in his arms. I sat back disappointed and whispered, “I was so close!”

“To what?” Myles asked. I glanced at my metal bracelet, “Oh, nothing,” I said. Me and Myles went back to working, and I started staring at the fence again. I longed to be out there, back with Lexi, and that the town was real.

When I went back to my sleeping place that night, I realized, I don’t even need a notebook, just a pen. And I knew exactly where to find one.

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 


Every morning there is a man who assigns us jobs. He has the list of our names, and tell us which job we are doing that day. And, of course he needs to write with something, so that is where I am getting my pen.

“Good morning workers,” The man called, and told everyone their jobs for today. I walked by him and his clipboard and ‘accidentally’ bumped into him. He dropped his clipboard.

“Sorry!” I exclaimed. “I didn’t mean t....”

“DON’T YOU EVER BUMP INTO ME AGAIN!” The man screamed. And when he bent down to grab his clipboard, I covered his pen with my foot. “WHO STOLE MY PEN?!” He screeched. The man searched the ground again, not able to find anything.

“If I find out that any of you stole my pen, I’ll make you work double, for the rest of your life!” The man had to go back to his home and find a new pen.

“Hey Myles, come here,” I whispered.

“Alright,” Myles said. I lead him to the rock that we always sit on during our short food break. I remembered when we were really young and had to go to school to learn about our jobs. They had to teach us how to write in case someone let us be their scribe.

I wrote:

This bracelet isn’t just to look cool, it is a tracker for the city authorities to know where I am. Also, it can hear everything I say. I couldn’t tell you this earlier but, there was a town out there but it was fake. It was for all the runaways to go to so they can send them back to the city. Lexi was kept there as a worker and she really never died.

Myles gazed at it, his eyebrows rising every so often, then he wrote back:

If there is a fake town, then they are probably trying to keep us from the real town. So I bet there really is a real town. But, when the job assigner calls our names he will notice we are gone so we better go.

“Oh yeah, let’s go,” I said, “but we will come back to make plans.”

“Shhh.....” Myles said, don’t forget about the.....thing,” he pointed to my bracelet. Whoops, I slipped the pen into my pocket and ran back. We made it just in time, the man didn’t even know we were gone.

He assigned me and Myles our jobs and we worked all morning. At lunch we went to our normal eating spot on the rock, and I pulled out the pen. I’ve been carrying this pen in my pocket all day. Finally I can use it.

Myles, I have made a plan. When they were bringing me back to the city, I saw a opening in the fence. It was on the other side of the authorities office so that when someone escapes they can leave the city from there. But the only way to get there is through the authorities office.

Myles looked at me like I was insane and wrote:

Hayley, you do realize that is impossible! Sneak into the authorities office? You can’t be serious!

Oh I’m serious! See, the authorities are always there at night. But in the daytime, they are all out doing things or watching us workers. So, we go during the day and try not to get caught.

I still don’t believe this will work but hey, it’ll be better than being here forever!

That’s what I thought before I left the city too. When I was out in the wilderness alone, It was definitely worse than the city! But, I’m not going to tell Myles that or else he will never come with me.

Myles grabbed the pen again,

Wait! What about your bracelet? they will know where we are if we escape!

Uh oh I forgot about that, I have to get it off somehow. Or else we can never leave this city.

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
Me and Myles thought all week long coming up with no idea of how to get off my bracelet.

We walked over to where the man assigns our jobs. He was calling out everyones name in order of age. “Myles and Hayley.” He called, “Your on recycling.”

Are you kidding me? That is the worst job you can possibly get! Me and Myles just looked at each other and frowned. 

The job recycling is horrible. You are inside in a very humid room. You have to take apart old metal junk so that they can reuse the little parts. But, it’s worse than just that, they only give you these super hard pliers that will cut through nearly everything. The could probably cut your hand off! I’ve gotten a ton of cuts every time I have to do recycling. Also, when you are doing your job you always cut the little parts that you want to keep. If you do that, the people will always get mad at you, and make you work the same job the next day.

“This job is for the workers who are being punished, why do we have to do it?” I asked Myles.

“That was for making me drop my clipboard, Hayley!” The assigner grimaced.

“Theres you answer.” Myles whispered. Well, at least it was worth it. I could finally tell Myles what really happened.

This job is no fun. Every time that I’m trying to crush something my stupid bracelet gets in the way! Then I have to slow down and then the people yell at me. Now me and Myles are on this job for an extra five days, and it will probably be more than that!

I am so surprised at the things that these pliers can cut through! There has not been a single thing that I haven’t been able to crush. Wait...........if these pliers can cut through ANYTHING, I touched my bracelet, then I am sure they can cut through this!

Before we left for our food break, I slipped the pliers under my shirt, and slid out hiding behind Myles.

We sat down on our rock that now had writing all over it, I hope no one sees it. I pulled out the pliers, “Myles look!” I said. He found the pen from under the rock and wrote:

Why did you steal the pliers? If you get caught we will be doing that job for the rest of our life! Why do you even need the pliers anyway?

Because, it can cut through metal, and my bracelet is metal! It is the perfect way to get it off.

“Great Idea! Let’s cut it right now.” He snatched the pliers out of my hand.

“No” I stopped him, and wrote:


They will know if we cut it off because we they couldn’t hear me anymore. So we can only take it off when we are ready to leave.

Ding, ding, ding. They rang the bell to tell us to start working again. We all went back to work.

That night me and Myles took the pen out from under the rock. I stuck it in my pocket and brought it back to our sleeping place. We made our plans of how 
to escape. Myles realized that it might help us when we break my bracelet. Because they will come looking for me, and go out of their office, making it easier to sneak through.

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 
Today we leave, or, hopefully leave. I’m still not sure if this plan is going to work or not.

At lunch, we sat down, and pulled out the pliers from under the rock. “Ready?” I said.

“Yeah, ready,” Myles tightly gripped the handles and slipped the pliers under my bracelet. I closed my eyes, praying that they will cut through the metal.

Cruuuunch, I heard. It was off. My hand felt so light! We ran behind a row of trees, making sure no one saw us. Myles kept the pliers in his pocket for when we get out. Slowly, we were approaching the authorities office.

Men were leaving the building, probably looking for me. We made a run for the corner by the locked door. Pressed against the wall, I peeked around the corner.

As the last man came out, the door was closing, I dashed for the handle and at the last second, grabbed it. I pried open the door and hesitated to look inside.

“No turning back now,” I said and me and Myles slipped inside. It is so nice! I wouldn’t expect this in such a horrible city. We crept along the wall, peering in every doorway before we passed.
I looked in one room and there was a man, sitting at a desk typing. 

“Myles, there is someone in there!” I whispered as quiet as possible.

“What do we do?” He asked.

“I don’t know! I guess we will just have to make a run for it.”

“Who’s there?” a voice called, “I can hear you! Show yourself.” Oh crap, I must’ve talked a little to loud.

“Now what do we do?!” Myles questioned.

“Ummm.......run on three, one, two, three!” We both ran, the man who was typing on the computer realized who was running, he sprinted after us. 

I turned a corner, hoping it was the right way. I was running down any hallway I saw, collecting more chasers at every door. I looked behind me, now there were five men! Wait, were’s Myles? Did they already catch him, oh no! Even if I do escape now it will be just like last time, out there, alone.

BEEP.....BEEP........BEEP! sounded the alarm. Oh man, now more people will come and there will be no chance of getting out.

There, it’s a door, perfect! I slammed into it forcing the door outward.  I sprinted across the grass, not knowing were to go. I rounded a corner and an arm reached out and pulled me into a dark corner. I screamed.

He shushed me and I turned to see who it was. It was Myles! He made it out.

Seconds later the now even larger group of seven men ran passed.

No way, we both made it! “Myles, how did you get out? I thought they already caught you when you weren’t behind me.”

“Well I went the other way of you, to confuse the man chasing us. And, there was a door right there. I opened it and set off the alarm. Then, I hid here and you came running around the corner.”

It would have been a lot easier if I just went the other way.

“Come on we better go, they’ll start searching back here.”

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
 

Now, this is the place I want to be. Here, with Myles. Although we are short on food, it is definitely better than the city. The only thing that would make this better was if Lexi was here, or even better, if every worker was here.
 
        “Hey Myles,” I said, “Can we try to save Lexi now? We aren’t going to survive with only two people.”
 
        “Yeah I guess but it’s going to be hard.” Myles said.
 
        “Well we got the pliers how hard can it be?”
 ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
  
        We crawled over the hill that I first saw Lexi on. At least this town had no fence to keep us out. We looked over the edge and it looked so much different than when I first saw it. It not just that the children weren’t playing in the streets, or that all the workers were now doing their jobs, or even that the pets were all chained up, But that it looked exacly like the city that they had just escaped.
 
        Lexi was working in the field, perfect. “Lexi,” I whispered. She slowly turned, seeing our faces and walked twords us trying not to make it obvious.
 
        I grabbed my pen and wrote on the rock next to her.
 
        We have these pliers to break off your bracelet. So, right when it cracks, we have to run.
 
        Lexi gave me a thumbs up and shoved her hand forward. Crunch, the metal broke. We ran. Through the thick trees, they’ll never be able to find us in here. Hopefully Myles remembers the way back to our fire, because I sure don’t.
        “Myles, do you remember where our stuff is?”
        “Kind of.” He said. Oh, great, now we aren’t going to have anything!  “Oh, never mind, I found it.” Myles called. Yes!
        We sat around our campfire catching up with Lexi since we were last friends. She said that that town is even worse than the city because their was less slaves and they had to do even more work.
        “Slaves?” Myles asked, “Don’t you mean workers?”
        “Well, in that town they called us slaves so I just got used to the name.” Lexi explained.
        “Did you guys here that?” Myles questioned.
        “Hear what?” I said.
        “There is something over there by that bush!” Lexi and Myles both stood up.
        “Come on guys, it’s probably just a squirrel.” I laughed.
        “No, it is definitly not a squirrel!” A human emerged from behind the trees holding a weapon. Oh my god! It’s someone from the city! They are going to take us back! Me and Myles both took a step back holding up our hands and Myles grabbed the pliers. But Lexi stood there in awe, smiling.
 
        “Lexi! What are you doing? He has a knife.” The man ran twords Lexi. “Lexi, no, run!” She was still smiling, what is she doing? Lexi was only inches away from him and he grabbed her then, rapped his arms around her laughing.
 
        “Huh?” Me and Myles both said.
        “I can’t believe it,” Lexi said, “I knew you were still alive Hayden.”


“Myles, Hayley, this is Hayden.” Lexi said
“Um, hi Hayden? How do you two know each other?”
“He’s my brother,” Lexi smiled, “He escaped the city when I was young, but just like they told you about me, the city told us he had died because of some disease.





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