Chapter 14 – Anna

What do you know about the "liber"? Her voice broke at the end as she was fighting back tears.

I was practically frozen in fear, though I wasn't about to admit that. I waited tensely for the officer to answer.

I was jumping up and down in excitement.

"They found us!" I told Emmi quietly, but excitedly.

Giddy in excitement, Emmi smiled brightly.

"I knew they would find us! Wait till I tell the kids!"

I noticed that Loralie, Caleb and Arthur were still asleep.

Staring out the window, I noticed petite little drops falling to the ground. The swirled around in little clumps and landing on the ground. It was snowing

I was ecstatic, but also nervous.

What should we do about my aunt? I don't want to have a run-in with her... I typed.

Elizabeth responded with a progress report.

Mr. Hendricks says that we will wait until AJ is back to come and get you guys. We may have to wait even longer because the Population Police are planning a regular check-up, that kind of stuff is never good.

Anna has no id so we can't risk having her here. Also, leaving her alone is probably not a good idea, either. Once the Population Police have come and gone we will get you guys here and we will get Anna a fake id. Once that is over with Anna won't have to worry about her aunt.

I smiled at that.

I can't wait!

Two weeks tops until we get you here.

I walked away from the computer to stare out the window at the snow.

Snow. How beautiful and carefree. It fell, swirling, spinning, dancing. It could laugh with its friends and was free to run in the fields.

I shook my head. How silly of me to want what snow had. Comparing myself to snow.

I walked back to the computer and typed:

How far does the tunnel go?

Sorry we can't track underground, but between your place and Emmi's it is about 5Km.

I considered that, then how long it took me to walk to Emmi's.

Really? It certainly didn't feel that long. I was nervous though, and probably walked rather fast

It's kind of approximate, but still close considering the distance between your place and Emmi's. Also if the tunnel goes where I think it does...

I don't doubt it, I typed. Just surprised, that's all.

I looked out the window, snow lightly caked the ground and I wanted to dance in the falling snow.

Emmi popped in and typed:

Wait. Hold up, Elisabeth. Where do you think the tunnel goes?

Emmi and I stood side by side in the kitchen, just watching the forum. Emmi swallowed hard and I looked over at her. Her eyes skimmed the page, quickly reading recent posts. She reached out and typed:

What state is Harlow in?

I reached up and put my hand, comfortingly on her shoulder.

We waited tensely, for Elizabeth to reply.

I think Harlow is in south Illinois. Somewhere kind of close. That would explain how we got a good signal. I'll ask Mr. Hendricks and let you guys know.

Emmi backed away from the counter, suddenly blazing mad. I didn't look up, my eyes locked on the computer, so I hardly noticed.

"I hate this! Not the tunnel thing, but just in general. I hate having to hide! I hate not having a birth certificate! I hate having to run away! And I hate changing my name!" She yelled and it startled me.

I looked up at her as she paused, a sad look on her face.

"Shamira...That's my real name." She nearly whispered

I cringed from the pain emanating from her. A pain we'd all felt, a pain that came when we thought of what we'd lost because of this.

"Shamira." I cringed. "That is a beautiful name.

"But moping about it won't help. Moping never helps."

"I know, I just get frustrated sometimes."

Elizabeth typed:

Mine was Anne. Like 'Anne of Green Gables'."

I thought of my own name, but remembered my mother's warning and didn't share it, yet, but I did type:

We shouldn't have to live like this!

Elizabeth posted:

I agree Anna, this is wrong in so many ways. Some people just have no heart.

So many children out there can live freely, while thousands of children have to live their lives in secrecy. I would sometimes get mad at my sisters when they would complain about homework and school. I would just attack them and start screaming at them. I mother always calmed me down. I love class and love learning. Sometimes she was learning something in class she already knew from encyclopaedias, but I never groaned or complained like my sisters did because every time I would learn something that my encyclopaedias didn't tell me. That is my favourite part of most days, that's what kept her from hurting herself. Everyday, I try not to think of the harder times, I don't want to think of myself as suicidal. It is for that reason that I don't tell anyone this. It is very hard for me to think about this.

Emmi typed:

I understand how you felt. Did you tell anyone at all? I mean, besides us?

I guess I told my sister. I really miss her. You don't know much you love someone until you can't be with them.

I replied:

Where is your sister now? Can you still talk to her via this chat room?

Emmi posted:

That can only depend on whether she knows the password.

I commented:

True. Do you have any other ways of contacting her?

Emmi turned to me.

"Honestly, if her sister cam on here, wouldn't you be a little suspicious? I mean, I know I wouldn't feel safe. Something could happen and we could all...Well, let's just say it wouldn't matter if I was Shamira or Emmi." She said, cringing when she said "Shamira". "Either that, or I just worry too much."

I felt stricken.

"You do have a point."

While I waited for Elizabeth to comment, I headed over to my cot. Loralie was sitting down against the wall, fiddling with a few of the things she had found in the cabinets. She looked up when she heard me comes over.

"Anna! Wanna see what I made?"

I grinned.

"Sure!"

I went over to where Loralie was playing and sat down next to her.

"It's a Frisbee, I think! See?"She held up a silver disc with wires hanging out the back. The disk had a black rod in the front of it.

I was slightly surprised but I smiled when I saw Loralie's smile.

"That's cool! How did you make it?"

Loralie looked at the object.

"Um, I didn't make it, I found it!" She said, pointing innocently to the cupboard

I nodded.

"And what else did you 'find' in there?" I asked curiously.

"Nothing, just this".

I nodded and smiled at Loralie. "So what are you going to do with your...Frisbee?"

"I was going to throw it but, when i tried to, it made a cackling sound from this thing." She said, putting her finger on the top of the black rod

"Really?" I asked, examining at the object in her hand. "Do you want show me how you were going to throw it?" I was curious as to what the object did.

"Okay!" Loralie said, getting up from the floor.

She stood behind a cot, holding the Frisbee in a solid aim position. Flinging her arm back, she tossed the Frisbee across the room.

I joined her. "Careful where you throw that" I said, a bit late.

"Oops," Loralie giggled, retrieving the Frisbee from across the room.

I headed over to the laptop and read the posts.

Elizabeth had posted:

My sister has been on this forum in the past only one or two posts that was it.

You'll never guess what I found, it appears the Population Police are doing some type of research about our patterns (Where we go and what type of places we usually live in) it's very fascinating...that they know nothing about us.

I laughed.

"Funny really, they think they know so much when they really don't."

A/N- HAHA Here I am! Attempting to be back but getting nowhere. I guess a 1,400 word chapter will just have to do. Sorry I didn't end this chapter on a super exciting note, this part of the story is certainly less exciting. There were a lot of things that I wanted to say in this chapter but I didn't chose the right POV to do it. Next up, AJ! For those of you who are reading this and want more, please be informed that I am already planning the next chapter. Thanks a bunches for reading! R/R!

~RoseMary Sullivan/Elizabeth Walters