On their last day, the students were set free in a mall.
“Um…I need to go to the bathroom. Just walk around and I’ll call you when I’m done, okay?” Kasia said apologetically to Miranda.
Miranda strolled around in the mall. When she stepped into a jewelry store, she immediately went to the earrings and started searching for crosses–her favorite type. In the end, she had to pick between two pairs–an orange pair and a clear-cut diamond pair.
“Pick the diamond pair,” a voice came from behind.
Her eyes widened. Her heart began racing in the speed of a thousand miles per hour. She spun around.
Needless to say, it was…him. The young guide.
“Oh…um…hi!” She stuttered.
“Hi. Uh, I just thought you’ve been standing here for a long time, so I…yeah,” he said. Then, he took a good look at her. “You look familiar.”
“Yeah, I was at the museum. You know…Jackson High?”
The young guide thought for a moment. Then, he laughed.
“I recognize you,” he said. “Remember when the lights were turned off right before the clip began? I was sitting only two seats away from you.”
No wonder she’d heard a snicker! He’d overheard everything she said to Kasia!
Miranda grimaced in embarrassment and blushed.
He chuckled. “You look kind of cute when you blush, Miss…?”
“Just call me Miranda.” She began laughing too.
“And I’m Edison. Nice to meet you.”
They shook hands.
“So…what brings you here?” she asked.
“I have the day off today, and the museum schedule doesn’t have my name on it—I do voluntary work there when I don’t have school. So I thought I’d come back to civilization.” There, Edison chuckled softly. He gestured towards the earrings. “Which pair will you have?”
“I don’t know…” she stared at them, frustrated.
“I like the clear-cut diamonds,” he said.
Miranda bought the diamond pair. When she turned away from the counter, Edison was standing in front of her, smiling. He took the earrings from her without a word, carefully piercing them through her earlobes.
“Oh…uh…thank you, Edison,” she stammered.
“Would you like to take a walk outside? I’m a tour guide of some sort, after all,” he said.
“But I’m…waiting for my friend.”
“She’ll call you, won’t she? Let’s go.”
And so they went. The two walked side by side on the street, chatting and laughing.
“Tourists…” a deep voice mumbled nearby. Miranda’s shoulders tensed. A moment later, she smelled smoke.
Edison covered her nose and mouth with one hand immediately, gripping her shoulder with the other. “Don’t breathe, and walk faster,” he whispered in her ear.
After a short while, she felt Edison’s hand over her mouth begin to slip, and the grip on her shoulder loosen. She turned just in time to see him fall unconscious.
“Hah!” Miranda heard a familiar deep voice bark once in laughter. Strong arms tore Edison away and held her in place. “Tourists, huh…you better come with us, girl.”