General Fiction posted January 20, 2024

This work has reached the exceptional level
Deciding to leave


by Lisasview

There was a knock on the door.  
"I'm in here; give me a minute!" I yelled, from the gas station bathroom.                                       
Hands shaking, I opened the small box of red hair dye I had stolen from the corner drugstore.  I lived in a small town, and everybody knew me, so I had to be careful.
After stealing the dye and placing it in my jean jacket's pocket, I picked up a box of
Mr. Williams smiled and said, "Hey there Patty, how's it going?  I'm surprised to see you here at this time in the morning."
"Oh, I just have a slight headache and I am out of aspirin."       
I walked three blocks to the only gas station in town.  The bathroom was filthy, but I didn't care.
The beautiful model on the hair dye box smiled at me as if to say, "Just try and look as good as I do."
Again, a knock.
"Go away!" This time I was almost screaming.
Within minutes I cut my long blond hair off and stuffed it into a plastic bag.  I mixed the dye in the plastic bowl I brought with me and waited for the magic to happen.
Just as I was about to rinse my hair, I heard a knock on the door and the key turning in the lock.  A man's work boot tried to step in.  I pressed my body against the door and in a shaky voice said, "You better not come in.  I have been sick, and I am cleaning it up."

 His boot quickly left. I had a plan I had been working on for years.
I dried my short red hair under the hand dryer and left the bathroom with a small backpack, tossing my hair in the trash can by the side of the building.
The local bus station was a 10-minute walk.  I wanted to run but didn't. 
Most of the people getting on the bus were workers from out of town.  I got off the bus near the thrift shop in the next town and used cash to buy dresses, tops, pants and a black baseball cap.
From there I went to the Greyhound bus station and put everything on, making me look at least twenty pounds heavier.
I stared at myself in the mirror; no one would recognize me.  He would never find me.
I paid for my ticket in cash.  I was on my way to a new and safe life.
Only fifteen minutes before the bus would arrive and take me to my freedom.

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