Central Park came into view all too quickly. By then, I'd given up on cigarettes; I was craving something stronger. A joint, maybe, to keep me calm and take me away from the pain I'd long since grown immune to.
I was fully intending on returning to my apartment, to crawling into my bed and repressing the memories of the night, when I heard a vaguely familiar voice cutting through the dark. And then I saw them, the same two boys that had dragged me into this nightmare.
"Well," I said as I approched them, "fancy seeing you again."
The older of the two, Ian, I thought, turned around too quickly, causing him to slide down from the rock wall he'd been perched upon. "Hey," he greeted quietly. "We have some, er, problems."
I let out a hollow laugh, knowing too well that I was coming across as a complete bitch. "You have some problems," I retorted. "I am going home."
I could see the desperation in Alex and Ian's faces. "Look, girl-" Alex began, but I cut him off.
"I have a name," I sneered. "It's Elyse."
Ian shot his friend an angered look. "Elyse...please. We need your help," he said in a softer tone. "We're sort of being chased...by the FBI."
This time, my laugh was a lot more sincere. "Oh, this is just great. Now I really need a fucking joint." Go figure that I'd end up getting entangled with some convicts on the run. They didnt even look old enough to be convicts.
"Fine," I said at long last. "Fine. I will help you. But I'd better get something good out of this in return."
A wide grin spread over Ian's face. He opened his mouth, probably to thank me, but before he could the screech of a siren echoed through the shadows, and all our faces fell.
"Shit," Alex muttered. "Shit. We have to run."
And so we did, taking off at full speed into the night. And all the while I was cursing myself for wearing a skirt. Attempting to dogde the strategically placed bushes and trees that littered Central Park, I reached out blindly for something, anything. What I found was Ian's hand, entertwining with my own, holding it tightly.
"C'mon, Elyse," he murmured softly. Just when I thought we'd made it far enough away, I felt my foot get caught on something, taking me down onto a stretch of pavement. A loud tear of fabric reached my ears. Fuck.
I could hear the voices of the officers as they came closer to us, and I knew there was only one thing to do. Ian was still standing over me, holding out a hand to pull me to my feet. Shutting my eyes tightly, I yanked the skirt off, took his hand, and started off yet again. I was in way over my head.