Disclaimer: "The Pretender" and its characters do not belong to me they belong to TNT and NBC and are being used without permission. Please don't sue because I have no money.

By: 24

Up the tiny hill nestled between some trees stood a two-story house surrounded by a deck and the twelve or so steps that led up to the deck. The front of the house had windows lining its front and the trees and sky reflected off them. Up the other steps beside the house led to another deck which had a table and chairs and it overlooked the driveway. Up the hill behind the house was a tree that had a bench built on it and behind that was more trees.

Jarod stood on the top deck and looked down the driveway and then back up the hill looking at the trees surrounding the house. He had decided to go on vacation because the game of cat and mouse was getting to him. He wondered when it would end. If he could ever lead a normal life and settle down just in one place or was this his lot in life to run from place to place never settling down.

It was chilly, but not too bad. He decided to go inside and get the fire going with the wood and paper that was beside the heat stove inside. He had already put his bags in the main room and set his laptop on the kitchen table. He was on vacation, but that was no reason to keep an eye on the Centre and what was happening in the rest of the world. He went into the kitchen after he lit the fire and it was going and got out a cup, put the water on and emptied a packet of hot cocoa into the cup. He had asked the grocery store clerk what it was and he had told him then he took it to his other lair, read the directions and made some of it. It was very good and decided it would be a good idea to take some in the woods.

The downstairs held a kitchen with a pantry, oven, microwave, and a dishwasher and of course a sink. The floor had red tiles that lined the rest of the downstairs including the bathroom, which only had the necessities. The stairs were lined with a gray/blue carpet and the top had blue tiles that only lined the top the rest was the same carpet that lined the stairs. The other room had blue carpet and it had a loft and a bathroom with a shower under it. It didn't have a door and it was open. There was a room that had a door, but there was nothing in it. The next door held a bathroom in it with another shower and the floor had white tiles. The other room was the main room and it had the same carpet. This is where he was sleeping in. It held a bed, closet, and table and then there was a door that led to a deck and it was a little deck at that. The room had a door, but the rest of it was open and it looked out to the hallway and the downstairs.

Jarod sat on the couch and turned on the T.V. and sat sipping his cocoa. He sat back and turned his head towards the window and looked at the surrounding trees and then back to the T.V. After that he decided to go back upstairs to get ready for bed.

The Next Day.

Jarod went down stairs to fix himself breakfast. Looking out the kitchen window and there standing on the little hill was a doe looking right at him. He blinked and then decided to take a picture of the doe as it looked at him. He snapped the picture then set the camera down and the doe was still staring at him then suddenly it turned to run up the hill and out of sight. Jarod smiled at the beautiful sight. Having been in the Centre so long and not being allowed to see animals except the bunnies he had never had an experience like that and it was incredible. He fixed his breakfast, put it on the plate, got a fork and went outside to sit on the deck. He looked as the gray squirrels raced up trees and started chattering away and he heard the voices of birds sing around him. He closed his eyes after he was done soaking up the sun and listening to the animals talk around him.

He went back inside, washed his dish and fork and then brought his backpack downstairs and filled it with food and water. He locked the door behind him and started to do some hiking. Heading the way that the deer supposedly went he followed the trail and came out to a path that was there and decided to go right. He came out onto road and decided to follow it. He was standing in the driveway of the house that he had just left. He turned around and saw that there was a trail there too and decided to take it. He went down the trail and came to a small creek. He explored a little bit and then went back onto the road. He walked to the end of the road and found another trail and decided to take that one too. He could hear water, as he got closer to wherever he was going to. He stopped as it came into view. The waterfall was beautiful as it cascaded down the rocks and down to the bottom to meet up with the creek. He sat on one of the rocks that littered the waterfall and thought that this was a perfect place to eat his lunch. After eating a sandwich, chips and drinking water he put the bags and bottle back in his pack and headed out back towards the house. He stopped once to pick a few berries that were growing on the side of the road and put them in his mouth. The owner of the house that he rented from told him that blackberry season was in full swing and he had tasted his first blackberry. He liked them so much that he took out his Baggies that he had put in his pack and put berries in them. After that he made his way back to the house, unlocked it and then went to his computer. He checked his e-mail and found that there were no mails and then checked the news.

A week later.

He got into his car with his backpack and duffle bag. He was going to get back into the game again. He looked back to the house and then turned on the engine and backed out the driveway and onto the road. He left the key with the neighbor and took his leave. He had a fun time hiking through the woods, listening to the animals around him and just relaxing. Hopefully he would do this again, but now he must leave and do another pretend.

The End.