My name is Danielle I have only been an orphan at the "Hudson Street Home for Girls" for about 4 months. I am 15 years old. I used to be an ordinary kid with a mom, dad, and an older sister. One day I was over at my friend Lisa's house. We where playing hopscotch outside; her mom interrupted our fun by telling me that there was a fire and my parents and sister where trapped inside the house and were unable to make it out alive. I sat and cried for hours with Lisa, and then the social workers came and got me and took me here. So here I am with 30 other orphans and a drunk who hates kids taking care of us.
For the four months I have been here I have been trying to think of a successful attempt to run away. I have tried two times and have gotten caught each time. Finally, I got the best idea. It took a while to think up because I knew if I screwed up and got caught that it would be a lot more than 3 swats from the paddle. That's why I spent a lot of time looking around for something good, something better than anyone could have ever discover. Then finally I knew the most obvious and biggest thing in our room "the door" would be the answer. I mean know one would ever think it's possible since it's locked up and plus know one would ever think anyone would be brave enough to go through with it. That's why I knew it was perfect. The only things stopping me from this brilliant plan would be Miss. Hannigan and the windows that show the fire exit I would have to walk down to escape.
Two weeks ago when me and the rest of the 30 orphans were outside doing our monthly walk, where we walk in a circle for about an hour, I paid close attention to my surroundings. I had then noticed the fire exit and then remembered the door in our room that is locked. I then noticed the only thing keeping us in the alley we walk around in is a gate, which all you have to do is climb over.
It is now 3 a.m., I have spent a whole hour thinking and asking myself if this is really a good idea and if I really wanted to risk the chances of getting caught. I begin to walk towards the door when I heard a tired little voice try to whisper loud enough to where I could hear "Danielle, Danielle, where are you going?" I turn to see, Molly, the youngest of all the orphans sat up on her knees with her brown hair sticking to her face and tears streaming from her dark puppy dog brown eyes. I walk with guilt over to Molly and sit down beside the little six years old. "Molly, I'm going to run away." "What why, you can't leave Danielle," the tired little girl cries. I wrapped the little girl in my arms. Finally Molly fell asleep. I tucked her into bed before I began walking towards the door. I walk to the stairs while starring back at the girls and the room; knowing this may be my last time in the room. I then begin walking up the four steps leading to the door. I reached in my pocket and pulled out the paper clip I found outside Miss. Hannigan's office door two weeks ago. I wiggled the paper clip in the hole to here the key is supposed to go. *Click I whispered under my breath in an excited tone, "yes!" I then took the chain and lock off the door. Then I undid the locks on top and bottom of door. I fixed the chain on one of the handles so that when I closed the door behind me it would look as if it was still locked. I wrap my shaking hands and wrap them around the doorknob and pulled to open the door. To my surprise the only noise that came from the door was a small creaking noise. I closed the door quietly behind me and slowly stepped down the fire exit in case they squeaked. Once to the bottom I ran over to the fence and pulled my self over after a few times. I look around the streets of New York which are usually very crowded but at this time there are only a few cars and very few people. "I'm free! I can't believe it." I heard a noise come from the orphanage building so I took off down the street where I found a nice little alley where I would sleep tonight.
I woke up with the morning air hitting my face like ice cold water. I'm guessing it is now around 10ish which means six hours! I have been gone for SIX HOURS! Miss. Hannigan wakes up around six every morning making us do role call and begin our morning work that lingers throughout the day. This means Miss. Hannigan most likely has known I've been gone for about four hours now! I'm sure she has all the police stations around looking for me. I can see her now running around yelling at the orphans questioning if they know where I am; totally drunk with two bottles of hard liquor in her hands. Miss. Hannigan's biggest fear isn't if I get hurt or killed its If the Board of Orphans find out and she possibly loosing her job.
I walk out of the alley inspecting the road making sure no cops are in sight. I walked the streets imagining if I were a normal walk just getting fresh air. I guess I wasn't that careful, I turned a corner and ran into a six foot, bald, buff cop, that's when I remembered it was a Monday and kids were in school still. The cop, unsure of who I was, took me by my ear and took me down to the police station where they called Miss. Hannigan to come and claim her missing 'baby'. As I sat on the bench for the 30 minutes I then looked up and saw Miss. Hannigan, drunk, wobbling towards me with her arms wide open, "Danielle, Danielle, awe my little peach fuzz." She said as she pushed me into her chest and hugged me. "I was worried sick, you poor baby, you didn't catch a cold did you?" "Thank you soo much officer!" she said in a flirty slutty way. "You're welcome mame, I found her wondering the streets about 15 minutes from here." The officer said in a reassuring way. In the taxi we sat there silent as she thought of ways to punish me and control her furry in front of the texi driver and as I imagined all the worse.
As we pulled up to the orphanage Miss. Hannigan wrapped her boney arm around me in a loving heart-touching, motherly way, until we closed the door behind us in the orphanage. Miss. Hannigan then pushed me to the ground and screamed at me for an hour. "WHERE IN THE HELL WERE YOU?!" She yelled as I laid there crying. "Im sorry Miss. Hannigan I just wanted fresh air." I said in a quiet tone. "WHY THE HELL DO YOU THINK I LET YOU ALL HAVE THE WALK OUTSIDE!" After an hour of back and forth talking/ yelling, she finally made me go to bed for the night, with NO food.
The next morning Miss. Hannigan called me into her office where she made me bend over with my dress up and underwear pulled down to get my FIVE paddles! It was awful but I made sure I did not shed one tear. After the paddling Miss. Hannigan made me clean her intire office with a tooth brush with about 30 bristles still on it. By the time I finished that it was dinner time where Miss. Hannigan made me sit by her and eat. I was not allowed to look at anyone or talk to anyone. So I sat with my head down and ate as I imagined me as if I were a queen in a castle far away in India where Miss. Hannigan was a peasant and had to do everything for me.