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A tattoo that's been on your hand for as long as you can remember. A chance happening. A threat.

A story.

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6. Dancing Shadows

 

Everywhere they turned, there was a sniper ready to fire at them. They hoped that what they said about a moving target being harder to hit was true and kept running. They had a few near misses, but kept running. They finally found an abandoned house that was out of all of the snipers' lines of fire. To get there, however, it involved running down a street that was well covered by sniper fire. They took a deep breath. "Let's do this." Josh said quietly. Lily nodded and they turned the corner. They were met with a shower of bullets. They simply sped up. Lily heard Josh gasp. She didn't want to stop but hated herself for not doing so. If she even slowed down to see if he was okay, she'd be hit. She swung the corner and was glad to be out of the gunfire. She burst into the house, trying to catch her breath. Josh burst in behind her, clutching his arm. There was silence for a few moments as they both caught their breath.

 

"Let me look at your arm." Lily said gently. He pulled off his jacket and saw the wound. He quickly looked away, his stomach turning at the sight of blood. "There's a first aid kit in my bag," He said, handing the bag to her. She rooted in it and produced the small green box. "It doesn't look too bad, I think it's a flesh wound." She pulled out a roll of bandages and wrapped his arm, before making a makeshift sling and putting his arm in it. "We can't hide in here forever." He said. "I know." She replied. He thought for a moment. "Pass me the envelope that's in my bag." She pulled it out and handed it to him without a word. He managed to rip it open and pulled out the letter. It took him a moment to recognize the handwriting, but when he recognized it, it hit him like a blow in the chest.

 

Josh,

I hope you never have to read this letter. We always knew you were different. It hurts like hell to think that you might be persecuted for that, but I have to be realistic. 

If you are reading this, chances are you're on the run and/or your life is in danger. There's a safe house that only me and  few other guys know of. Go there. The co-ordinates are written on the back of this letter. Remember Summer of 2003. 

Promise me you'll never be afraid of who you are.

If you've got allies, promise me you'll be loyal. That's something the military taught me. 

Don't change, Josh. You're an amazing person, and I know you're going to make me proud.

Dad

 
Josh stared at the letter, feeling numb. Even in death, his father still had faith in him. He turned it over and read the code, smiling. His father had taught it to him when he was nine. "Pass me a pen." He said quietly. Lily passed him a pen without a word. Using his good hand, he wrote out the co-ordinates. There was another message there too. It read;   "Angel Wings"   "Look for a way out that's not covered by snipers." Josh instructed her. She nodded and, after a few moments, they found a back door. Lily threw herself against it and it shattered, the wood old and rotten. "Let's go." He was looking at his phone, obviously having just put the co-ordinates into it. They began to travel, heading for the hideout.  
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