The Autumn Leaf's Official Playlist
2. Meet Virginia-Train
3 Hurt Feelings-Mac Miller
4. Adore You-Harry Styles
5.. Close To Me-Ellie Goulding
6.. Dunno-Mac Miller
7. Hot Girl Bummer-Blackbear
8. Falling-Trevor Daniel
9. No Tears Left To Cry-Ariana Grande
10. Goodbyes-Post Malone
11. Thank u, Next-Ariana Grande
12.. Never Be The Same-Camila Cabello
For your reading pleasure, start with Chapter One. In September, you can listen and read along with the story. Don't forget to preorder your copy!
It was a great day to become a teenage runway. As a trailer park resident, the statistics were believable. The police would look around locally; they may even throw up some flyers for good measure. It would end shortly, and they would assure my father that this was normal and that I would come back. I had seen it happen, but he would know differently.
Where is it? Panic punched through me as I searched my room.
I ripped a drawer open, frantically. My anxiety was out to play, and she was an ugly bitch. He knew. He had to know. Why did I come back here? It was a trap. Twirling around the room, I brought my hands to my head. Unvoiced screams bottled in my lungs ready to rip into the air.
“WHERE IS IT?” I demanded. Only this time, I heard movement. I said it. Crouching down like an animal ready to attack, I waited.
Sunlight bathed through the cracked, broken blinds and my safe gleamed brilliantly. Of course. I crept over and twisted the combination. There it was, peaking at me under the silver revolver. I grabbed the picture, shoving it into my back pocket, and hesitated.
I did not know who I was when I bought the pistol. I was not a violent person. My fight or flight instinct had kicked in the day I went underground and purchased the numberless gun. I had recently been mugged, but it was nothing close to what I endured in this house of horrors.
I closed the safe, securing it before I left. I had no need for it now. No one would hurt me again. I would not allow it.
“Autumn,” he slurred.
I tensed. Every fiber of my being revolted as I thought of him getting in the way of this. I threw my backpack on, only looking back to see that the door was locked. I opened the window, climbed on top of my table and vaulted myself from the musty room.
I ran. I did not even stop when I reached the edge of the woods. I kept on, branches slapping me in my face; twigs threatening my clumsy feet. I ran past my hiding place where I went as a child. When I was eight years old, I watched Forrest Gump with my brother. My parents had left us alone for the night, and it was the only thing we had.
After the movie, I found a meadow. I did not know who God was, and he did not turn Jenny into a bird, but I got on my knees and asked him to. After three times of trying without anything happening, I gave up on the whole idea; although, I still hid in the meadow after that day, I never flew off as a bird.
I busted through the forest on the opposite side of town. Looking at the busy road, I decided to keep walking by the tree line. My heart was pounding in my chest, but I tried to look as calm as possible. I did not want anyone to see a frantic girl, running beside the road. The last thing I ever needed is to be taken back to that place again.
Thunder clapped above me, I looked up, seeing the distant rain clouds. I could make it to the bus station before it hit. I picked up my pace, crunching on the dead leaves below me, spotting red ones in the mix.
When I was a girl, there were some happy times. My mother told me on the first day of fall, she had a dream about a girl with hair the color of autumn leaves. She was strong and confident. She believed it was a premonition telling her everything would be okay. I became her Autumn. Though the leaves fall, I will rise.
I was not superstitious. I did not believe in anything. Hell, I did not even believe in myself most days, but something about my fierce red hair and the season I was born, made me want to believe that I was destined to be more than I was born into.
I saw the familiar building ahead. I had passed by it too many times to count, wondering when I would finally buy a one-way ticket out of here. The parking lot was peppered with cars and buses. Just as I opened the door, the bottom fell out of the sky.
The sky was crying in August, a rare occurrence in Texas. The bus station was quiet, but honestly, no one used the bus station anymore. My torn backpack was glued to my feet, filled with thrift store finds. My purse was slung over my shoulder, secured to my side. The only content was a ticket and a wad of cash that would earn me a degree far, far away.
I left it all behind. I did not know what lengths those around me would go to in order to keep tabs on me. Somewhere deep down, past the paranoia, I do not think anyone cares to find me. My past will be angry, but time heals all wounds. After a while, I will have never existed to them. Just a faint memory of the girl who used to be.
I will always carry them in my scars, my tears I shed behind closed doors; my whole being. But one day, I will be someone else. Today, I am Autumn Miller, teenage runaway. In three days, when I climb off my last bus, I will be Autumn Miller, college student, and resident of Washington. The girl who left her monsters behind.