The Pattern

"What's your name?" the Hannah asked the red headed girl with the funny cloak on.

"Rosie," the girl answered. She was still studying the movement of her little bead in the water- admiring the compass she had made using a bobby pin and hematite. Her heart seemed set on tracing their whereabouts.

Hannah sighed, she felt sorry for the girl, who seemed distraught beyond words. She decided to try to engage one of the boys in conversation. She chose the blond because he looked by far the most approachable. "What's your name?"

"Will," the boy said smiling easily at her. He turned to the girl. "Don't worry about the compass, we can't go back there anyway. If we ever need to make an escape we'll have to start anew obviously they can all find us in our homes."

Hannah looked at the man slumped low in his seat. "He can hear us."

The children looked up and sat straighter, Rosie hid her water bottled behind her back as if it weren't too late to hide it. Then she looked at Will her lower lip poking out. "What do you mean we can't go back?"

"If we went back, they could come after us again any time they wanted." Will shrugged, "think about it, did they take you at home?"

"They took me at the police station," another child piped up. The others starred at him curiously. He shrugged before responding, "I was just hanging out."

"You aren't being honest," Hannah thought, but this time didn't say so. She'd learned a few years ago that not every truth needed to be spread for the world. Aloud she asked: "What's your name?"

"Copenhagen," the boy said and fidgeted as if he wasn't comfortable with his name. "I'd rather be called Hagen, it's just shorter."

"Ok," Hannah smiled at him. "I'll only call you Hagen."

Hagen turned to the last child who was studying the helicopter controls as avidly as he had before. "Who are you?"

"Mazen." He was abrupt, short and too the point. Not welcoming more conversation. He wasn't interested in the other children, although he too had watched Rosie work out her compass.

"I could fly it," Hagen said proudly, wrapping his arms behind his head in a position Hannah didn't think was entirely relaxed.

"We have a pilot, thanks," Rosie spoke up turning her little water bottle compass in frustration.

"Oh ye of little faith!" Hagen smirked.

"Are you religious?" Hannah asked touching the cross around her neck.

"Hell no!" Hagen barked out a laugh.

Hannah frowned slightly she knew that was an inappropriate response. The nuns would have washed his tongue with soap. Only, the nuns weren't around, and she might never see them again.

"I'm religious," Will said softly placing a hand on Hannah's to comfort her. He was sensitive, a good person. Hannah liked him instantly.

"Not Christian," Rosie said dropping her water bottle and letting it roll around on the floor aimlessly as the bobby pin had.

Hannah looked at Will's hand on hers, and wondered what Rosie meant by "not Christian." In theory she'd heard of other religions, but never in all her years had she met someone that didn't believe as she did.

"No," Will agreed quietly, "not Christian."

"What else is there?" Hannah blurted.

"Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, and then there all the different cults and denominations, and a bazillion different beliefs in the world, and just as many people to subscribe to them." Rosie answered tugging at the cloak and eventually pulling it off.

"People subscribe to magazines, not religions." Mazen announced in a condemning tone.

"I canceled my subscription a long time ago." Hagen grinned, pleased with his rebellion against the masses.

"We need to find a way to escape," Rosie said as if she were thinking aloud. "There must be a way to get home, if we get home my parents will protect us all I'm sure. They can afford it."

"Like they protected you?" Mazen's statements were becoming a constant dredge on productivity. He was a pain in the budunkadunk.

Rosie's eyes teared up. "They would have, they were out of town."

"Good job Maz," Hagen snapped. "Usually I'm the one to make the girls cry."

Hannah caught sight of something to the left of the chopper, it was a very odd bird one she'd never seen before. Will seemed equally interested. He whistled under his breath and might have said something but the chopper dropped a notch suddenly. The girls squealed with fright, and so did Mazen.

You have 2 choices: