Charlotte Jones is stuck in a world where love is looked at as a disease. She is caught talking about becoming a Shadow with her friends Talia and Madi. Shadows believe in love, which most think is bad. The three friends must now escape without getting caught. If they are caught, they'll be given a choice. A world without love or death?


17. Panic

I awoke abruptly to a constant beeping sound. It took me a little bit to remember where I was. As soon as I remembered, I looked over to Madi. My eyes focused on a machine she was hooked up to. Her heart rate was out of control!

“Claire! Oh my god! Claire!” I screamed waking everyone up, “It’s Madi! Oh dear god. Help!”

This was it. This would be my last moments with Madi before she died. Claire rushed over and was saying stuff but I didn’t listen. I needed to think quickly. I needed to say something. Talia and I were both crying. Talia and I each grabbed one of Madi’s hands and kept saying ‘hang in there’ hoping she could hear us.

Kyle put his hands on my shoulders trying to comfort me. I hardly noticed. I finally started to pay attention to what Claire was saying, which wasn’t a good idea.

“It’s in the medical room! I can’t get it!”

My heart sunk. I just blurted out without thinking, “I’ll get it.”

“No way! They’re probably still up there. I’m not letting you go.” Jessie said glaring at me.

“I’m going. Now tell me what I’m looking for Claire!” I shouted rapidly.

Claire looked at Jessie for the okay, so when Jessie said nothing Claire explained, “It’s a clear bag of IV fluid that has blue writing on it that says ‘Madi’ in the middle. It should be sitting on the second to bottom shelf in the medical storage room.”

I started to run toward the stairs when I heard my name.


I turned around and there was Kyle running after me, carrying a gun. I hoped he was just gonna hand me the gun, but instead he said, “I’m coming with you.”

I didn’t think I’d have time to argue, so I just continued running. I got to the top of the stairs and pointed at Kyle to go first with his gun. He opened the door and scanned the area. We were clear. He ran swiftly to the medical room, checking every corner.

I found two bags that looked like one Claire described so I just grabbed them both. I motioned for Kyle to go. He peered around the corner, but quickly pinned himself back against the wall.

“A guy is coming.” He whispered.

“What do we do?” I whispered back panicking.

He gave me hand signals that I tried very hard to follow. We tiptoed as fast as we could over to the medical storage room. He motioned for me to go under a shelf, and he would go behind the boxes.

I did as told, and squeezed under a shelf. I looked over at Kyle who was making a small hole in his box. I didn’t understand at first, but then I realized it was for the barrel of his gun. He put the barrel of his gun through it, just enough that it was barely peeking out. Now I know why he wanted to go behind the boxes; a better angle at the door.

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