All I ever needed was for her to be quiet.  Or at least quiet enough for me to think.  If I didn’t get the chance to think about my options, I knew I would make the wrong decision.  And if the wrong decision was made, I knew my future would be ruined.  The future I had been meticulously planning since I was fifteen years old and getting ready to buy my first new car. But Mrs. Northerly from next door was here. Again. I knew she was lonely and I knew she just needed someone to listen, but her visits had increased from once a month to once a week to now almost daily. I knew she must have been sitting at her front window because she headed over the minute I pulled into my driveway. 

The more she talked, the more anxious I became. If she ever noticed the fact I often didn’t listen to her, she never showed it. I wanted to be kind, but I also knew if she didn’t leave soon, I would lost my mind and lose my chance to buy the car I really wanted. I knew this new car would be the only way I could get out of town unnoticed. And I needed to disappear before I was caught and before Anthony found me again. If Anthony found me, I would land back into the life I knew wasn’t for me. If I had to listen to one more lecture about banking standards, I knew I would completely lose my mind. And never get it back. 


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