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“She took a deep breath, and then abruptly leveled a dark glance over my shoulder. I turned in time to see the man in the aisle seat looking away as if he wasn’t listening to us. He appeared to be a businessman, in a dark suit with a power tie and a laptop over his knees. While I stared at him with irritation, he opened the computer and very conspicuously put headphones on.”
- pages 427-428, New Moon
Word Count 644
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Cats like to play with their food, and migraines are no exception. I woke up with a splitting headache, realizing with a jolt that the loud girl and her-
-companion were hurrying off the plane, whispering to each other. I pushed my way through the crowd, following them, then stared in horror as they started to run. My face set. Decades of searching weren’t getting away so easily.
I broke into a shallow jog behind them. My legs ached, my heart pounded as though it was about to give out, the cat in his head hissed furiously, attacking with all his might. But I didn’t push myself over the edge. Not too far. I was too old to run. I kept behind them, but refused to drop dead for a decision I hadn’t even made yet.
They were headed for another plane.
Maybe it would lead me to the bronze one!
I stopped, puffing in agony. They were getting away! If I could buy a ticket, maybe I could go after them!
No. Not another ride like that. Not again.
I thought of my father, on the ground, teeth embedded in his neck, struggling weakly through a drunken stupor. Hatred coursed through my veins, and I was just a boy again.
kill the bloodsucking leech before he could turn around
I had no choice.
I began to sprint like a runner, bracing myself for the last stand. I was a spitting cat, ready to use my last lives to avenge my father. I prepared for the leap, curled my claws and-
She looked at me.
The filthy killer looked at me with her butterscotch eyes, confused. I had broken through the haze of distraction that surrounded her. She knew, I had no doubt. She knew what I was about to do, but didn’t understand it. Perhaps she could sense, remotely, the hate rolling off of me in waves, but couldn’t she comprehend it. She was no mind reader. Not like him. The butterscotch girl was not like him.
“A child,” he groaned in a velvet voice, “a child. What am I becoming? Who am I, to attack such innocence?”
I faltered, then stopped. With unseeing eyes I watched as my last hope looked away, decided I didn’t matter. The way the other one had. She and the loud girl boarded her flight, and I just stared after them. Frozen.
I had not been beaten. I had given up.
Even the cat was quiet as I rooted through my shock. Revenge had been my drive, my goal, what kept me going in an age when so many had given up. How long had it been since I had truly wanted it?
Up and at ‘em. Gotta do stuff
The cat swished its tail, and I turned to leave the airport, wondering grouchily when I would get to a decent place, with aspirin. The people I passed would never have guessed the agony of a few moments before. But, hey. I was old. I’d made my choices, come what may. Wallowing in fear, despair, regret, that was the province of the young and stupid. And Shakespeare. Those actors had always bothered me.
But I couldn’t resist one last look as I strode out the airport doors, ready to retire in the morning. One look back. And despite the feelings I was determined to hold back, I felt I had done the right thing. If I had only had proof- but I didn’t. Hunches weren’t enough.
Besides, even if she had been a coldhearted, bloodsucking killer, I was old. I hadn’t the energy to rush around being some superhero! It was only him I wanted. Only the bronze one. And what were the odds she would have led me to that one, anyway?