I stare blankly at the brick wall in front of me. I don’t know what else to do; I am frozen in time. Most people would run, in fact everybody else got away except me. I just lie there, wondering how it came to this.
My training was supposed to help me avoid getting caught. Week after week I went through every possible scenario, including this one, but I never thought my downfall would come from something so seemingly trivial. I practiced where to run and where to hide, but I realize my preparation was in vain as my Converses come untied. Somehow the double-knotted laces loosen and send me tumbling down into the dirt.
I cough as the dirt makes its way into my mouth. I know I should get up and try to get away. Yet, I keep looking at the worn brick waiting for it to miraculously provide me with an escape.
It is too late, there is no escaping. I hear the footsteps pounding on the pavement, he is closing in fast. I turn to see his face, complete with a smirk and free of any sign of mercy or empathy. I turn, burying my face in the dirt, too embarrassed to face him.
I feel a hand come down on my back with an unnecessary amount of force and hear those three words that will forever haunt my dreams, “Tag, you’re It.” It, he has the nerve to call me It, as if I am some kind of monster. No, I will not be forever branded with this horrific label. I will bestow this misery on somebody else, anybody else. I get up and tie my shoelaces, ignoring their betrayal and run. I will run as long as I have to, until I reach the next victim. I will not let this define me.