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After that rainy night, things have never been the same. It was Jasmin's job to build the utopia. Now, she's forced to watch it burn.
Would you stay to watch what would unravel?
Or leave to start something new?

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4. Captors of time

“Hey there ass wipe. It’s time to wake up”

My skin begins to prickle from someone whispering in my ear. My eyes snap open to Aurora’s face. Bits of wet hair is stuck to her forehead. From what I could tell, she found her way to my shower.

“What time is it?”

“Time for you to get up”

I roll my eyes and turn over so I’m no longer looking at her. On the floor sat a pile of clothes. Most of them are shorts and tank tops. Not my clothes. There is two outfits tossed out to the side. The one closest to me is light blue ripped shorts, with a white tank top. Next to it is a white cotton dress with a leather jacket.

“What the hell is this?”

“Your clothes for today”

“I’m not wearing that to school?”

“You're not going to school”

“Says who?”

“Me”

Without another Aurora leaves the room. I look out the window. It’s too light to be early in the morning, and not light enough to be in the afternoon. Aurora must have turned off my alarm clock. I hate her sometimes. I laid there in bed for a few more minutes, contemplating whether or not I wanted to get up. I begin to think of the pros and cons. Pros, I won’t have to get dressed, or do work, I don’t  have to look at those ugly faces at school, and do whatever I want at home. Cons, I will have to do more work once I get back, get yelled at by  mom, then eventually become a dropout and a disappointment.

    I sighed angrily before getting out of bed. Today is one of those days where do care about anything. I just throw on random clothes not caring if they match or not. It’s not like I’m going to take my hoodie off anyway. The pants I threw on are dark blue ripped jeans, and a plain lime green shirt. They don’t match, but the hoodie I’m wearing is white so it won’t matter.

    The door opened and in stepped Aurora. She’s wearing a red crop top with the number thirty six on it, light blue shorts, and a pair of  white high top converses. Her mouth opened but no words came out. She’s too busy scanning me up and down.

“Wh-those- why?”

I only rolled my eyes and tried to push by her. I felt her hand clasped around my wrist and pull me back. Her left hand held my wrist and her tight hand shut the door. The sound of the lock echoed throughout the room. A split second later her hands started to unbutton my pants.

“The fuck you doing!”

“You are not wearing these clothes! I picked out perfectly good clothes for you over there!”

“Stop you fucking weirdo!”

I kick her in the stomach not hard, but hard enough to knock her on her ass. Unlike Leah, Aurora can withstand pain. Unlocking the door I ripe it open. Before I could take another step I felt the rug under my feet be ripped away. I fell forward. Pain speeded through out my knees, elbows, and chest.

“You are wearing one or the other Jazz! One or the fucking other!”

“Burn in hell Aurora, I’m not wearing none of them!”

I felt the top layer of my skin be ripped off as I was dragged back into the room. For a skinny twig, Arora can become a beast. That honestly scares me sometimes.


 

    After half an hour of cursing, screaming, and punching. I finally walked down the stairs in the white cotton dress. The dress is shorter than I thought, though I guess it isn't that bad.  Aurora still refuses to tell me anything. After the tenth time of asking her, I decided to give up.

    As we, well, I waited for something unknown, we sat on the porch eating strawberries. The morning sky has a mix of purple pink and orange. I bite into another strawberry and toss the green stem aside. I really wish I had chocolate or whipped cream right about now.

“Here take the last one”

I glance at the rather large red strawberry in her hand. I shake my head.

“Just take it, I don’t want it anymore”

“Then just leave in the box then”

“Who leaves one strawberry in the box?”

“Someone else will eat it”

“What if it gets moldy?”

“Then it get moldy”

I take a glance at her. Aurora's head shook side to side slowly. This went on for two minutes before she popped the strawberry in her mouth.

“Wasteful”

Aurora mutters before leaving back into the house. I choose not to follow her, instead I stayed on the porch. The clouds covered the rising sun perfectly. They wisped across the sun, bringing out the brilliant colors behind. The sun shined on the morning dew, making the grass look mystical. At moments, like this one, I wish time would just freeze for a couple of minutes. Letting the image sink in so when you close your eyes it’s still there.

    If I had a superpower it would be to stop time for as long as I wanted. Captain of time? No .Capturer of time? . The single phrase rung in my head. After two quick seconds of thought, my mind flashed an idea.

    On my fourteenth birthday, dad got me a polaroid snap. I haven't touched it or even looked at it since I got it. The brilliant white camera, sat between books collecting dust. Gently blowing, tiny dust particles flew into the air. The film and batteries are loaded, it’s ready to go.

“It’s about damn time you used that”

Aurora said when I walked back onto the porch. The clouds have drifted a few inches away, though the image is still beautiful. Leveling the camera to my face, I snap the picture. Next was the grass, I’m surprised that it caught shine of the dew. The two pictures sat in my hand, I’m shocked at how well they turned out. Since I have no superpower I guess I could settle on this. My little captors of time.


 

    The sound of an upcoming vehicle almost made me shove Aurora under my bed. After a few moments of realization, the vehicle did not belong to any of my parents. The white diesel pickup belongs to Celeb. The white sides are covered in mud and dirt, and the windows are tinted dark.

“About damn time. C’mon let's go”

“Where?”

“You’ll see”

The lack of information bothers me. I follow her downstairs anyway.

Celeb sat in the driver's seat with his window rolled down.  He wore dark sunglasses with a silver rim, a plain white T-shirt, and black cargo pants. His brother Caden wore similar clothing, only his shirt is pale green. Leah wore a low cut red shit that showered her colorful bra, and a pair of dark blue shorts.

Caden jumped out of the back of the truck. Dust spiraled up into the air as his black sneaker made contact with the ground. He laid his bulky arm my shoulders. The smell of faint cologne fill my nose.

“God. I remember when your mama had to beat you into a dress”

“Memories”

He chuckled a little before pulling me into a headlock. His knuckled dug into my skull.

“Ow fucker let me go!”

“Make me”

Balling my hand into a fist, I punch him hard in the stomach. He let go.

“This is why I don’t like you”

“You know you love me”

He rolls his eyes before jumping back into the truck.  


 

    I didn’t know it, but I needed this. I sat in the back end of the truck, the wind circling around me. The warm air feels good against my skin. I take the camera and snap a picture of the rear windshield. I glance at the picture before tucking it into my shoe.

“Hey let me look”

Leah slid over to me. Obsessively too scared to stand up, afraid she’ll fall out of the truck. I take the picture out of my shoe and hand it over to her.

“Nice, nice… Hey take a picture of me?”

“Sure”

Leah moved towards the back and rested her arm on the tailgate. Her blond hair covering her face as she looked out into nothingness. She made sure not to look at the camera.  

“That’s a good pose, hold still”

I press a button at the top of the camera before snapping the picture.

“Lemme look”

“Wait let it develop”

When the picture dropped out of the side of the camera, Leah seemed amazed at the picture. The black and white of the picture made everything better. I smiled before tucking it into my shoe.

“How You idiots doing back there?”

“Good. You?”

“I’m board as hell”

“You should join us”

“I will. The dush twins are boring”

Caden’s head poked out passenger window.

“Just be happy we didn’t decide to leave you on the side of the road”

Aurora and Caden’s head ducked back in. I rolled my eyes before closing them.


 

    I opened my eyes to the sound of child laughter and the smell of the ocean. The truck stopped, no sign of anyone. The sun was high in the sky now, waves rolled onto the sandy yellow beach. I jumped out onto the soft sand. I took in a long steady breath. It’s been four years since I came here. Nothing's changed, which for some reason makes me happy. Taking out the camera  I snap two photos. One in black and white, the other in normal color.

I don’t know how long I stood there, but the sound of Leah’s voice made me jump.

“Get dressed”

“What?”

“You wanna swim don’t you?”

“Ya, but not in my clothes”

“You mean my clothes”

Aurora plopped down next to me in a white two piece bathing suit. She has her hair in bun, and simple flip-flops on.

“Where did you get those?”

“The twins”

The twins? I don’t know why, but I started to laugh.
“I had the same reaction. But the swim suits aren't bad and they ain't the best either. But they’ll do”

Leah shrugged before throwing a soft object into my face. It’s a swimsuit, the same as Auroras.

    I slip on the swim suit in the truck. A part of me feels as if this place is a dream. A blissful dream.


 

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