A/N- First Shadow Children fic! Okay, I have an announcement- In the M.G. Haddix forum section, I have a Shadow Children Rping forum. Live a life in the shadows through Jen's Chatroom, or at Harlow/Hendricks. We need new members! Including the Rp forum, we have a chat section, a joke section, and a section to discuss the Rp. Hang out with people like you who enjoy the Shadow Children series!

"Population police! Open up!" rang a voice on the other side of the Canterbury motel door. Rodney, the desk person, shifted out from behind his cheap, scratched up desk and opened the door.

"Sheesh, you could've just walked in, I mean it's only a motel!" Rodney said as he opened the door to find that two very official looking officers stood at the motel door. One was a man with a very built shape and bald head. He had on thick black sunglasses that might as well been tinted. The other officer was a woman. She had brown hair pulled into a ponytail. She to had on large sunglasses. The woman nodded at Rodney.

"Hello sir, I'm Officer Maitik, and this is my partner, Officer Quincy. We are looking for a fugitive that reportedly was discovered somewhere in the downtown area. We know nothing about the whereabouts of this suspect, all we know is that it could be an illegal third." Officer Matik ran that off quickly, as if she had rehearsed it. Officer Quincy nodded. "We are wondering if you have seen anything."

Rodney scratched his head. This wasn't exactly 'news' as Rodney would call it. They had officers come in every week or so looking for an illegal third. Ever since that law was passed, stating that only two children were being allowed per family, all of America seemed to be controlled by these illegal third children. Even the head honcho up in D.C. has been flustered lately, his only task to find the illegal thirds. Rodney felt sorry for these kids, remembering he was fifth out of seven children when he was young. He would shudder to think what would happen to him if that law were passed in his time. Officer Quincy took out a folded piece of paper. On it was a picture of a child looking out a window. It was pretty blurry, and the face in the window wasn't very clear, although, you could tell that it was definitely a girl with short dark hair. Officer Matik looked up at Rodney.

"So, have you seen this girl?" Rodney looked closer at the picture. He smiled so that all his yellow teeth shown. "Yes, I do believe I have."

--

Becky Wyrock was once again hiding. Hiding from the world, as she would put it. When she was young, she would ask her mother, "Why can't I be seen? She would beg to go outside, just for a little bit, but her mother would always give her the same answer. "Why don't you do something else?"

Her mother had put colorful blinds on the windows, hoping that it would get the message to Becky, basically meaning, "don't look out the windows, and look at the colorful blinds. Her mother would try so hard to please her. Becky was an illegal third child. She had two older sisters. Laura, who was seventeen, was barely ever at the house. She was either at her part time summer job, or out with her friends. When Laura was at the house, all she ever did was rave about how wrong it was to have an illegal third hiding in their house. She treated Becky like household objects most of the time. Olivia, her other sister, was fourteen years old. She was going through what Becky would call the, "teenager stage" where all she would really care about was boys and 'who broke up with so and so.' When Becky's mother would ask Olivia to play with Becky, she would just respond, "Do I have to?"

Treatment like this from her older sisters would make her feel as if she were invisible. But now, she may as well be invisible. For nine-year-old Becky Wyrock was hiding in the attic in one of the largest cardboard boxes that they had in the attic. They had fixed it just so she could hide there without being seen. Becky hugged her legs as she once again sat silently while population police made their monthly population checks.

"Monthly population checks" were fairly new. They had just started checking houses a few several months ago. Becky would sit in her box for almost an hour waiting for someone to summon her up. But today, something wasn't right. This wasn't the usual day for a population check. She heard things falling downstairs, and people running all around her house. She suddenly realized that this was definitely not normal. Soon, almost instantly, she heard heavy footsteps coming up to the attic. The door slammed open. She could feel someone was in the room. Shuddering, she silently waited.

"Officer K to Officer B," a gruff voice said, "This is Officer B speaking, how is the search on the attic floor going?" A muffled voice from a walkie- talkie that the man with the gruff voice was supposedly holding. Becky heard the man reply, "I see evidence of possible movement, and you may need to send reinforcements." With that, Becky heard about three more people bound up the stairs. She was over-taken with fear that she might get caught. She listened as the people in the room ransacked the attic, coming closer and closer to her box. Closer, closer until the worst happened. A man whipped open the cover of the box she was hiding in. Then, everything happened so quickly. She was whipped out of the box and shuffled down the stairs. Once she was at the bottom of the stairs, another man hand-cuffed her and yanked her to the yard. She saw her mother and sisters crying. Laura was, to her surprise, sobbing. Before Becky could say anything, she was pushed into a squad car. It happened so fast. Before she was driven away, all she could say was, "Mommy!"

Tears streamed down young Becky's face. She was scared. Becky had heard stories about what they would do to third children that they caught. Becky shivered. She was still in the back of a squad car. A man with a baldhead was in the drivers seat. Becky realized that she had to at least try and get to know this man, for it might be the last face she would ever see. Becky turned on her "little girl charm" and tried talking to him.

"So, what's your name, mister?" The man in the front seat pulled the car to a stop. They were in some rural area that almost seemed deserted. The only thing in sight was a field and a couple of phone lines that lined the side of the road. The man looked at her with an expression that was almost unreadable.

"My name's Buck, but if you knew what was best for you, you would keep your mouth shut." With that remark, Buck started the car and drove on. Becky hugged her knees and buried her face into her purple sweater. She let her short brown hair stream over her face.

A/N- Check out the forum!