There are some truly amazing writers on The STACKS. It was a great two weeks reading your chapters and using your submissions to help write our next chapter. Before I begin, I need to recognize a few writers who helped create this chapter.
If you missed the beginning of the story, check out Chapter 1. If you’d like to contribute to the next chapter, please post your writing on The Runaway Chapter 3 thread on the Fan Fiction board. And now without further ado, here’s Chapter 2!
The Runaway Chapter 2
Emily froze. Her legs went numb and she assumed she was only moments away from being devoured.
“Run,” she told her legs. “Run already.” But her limbs refused to move and she remained fixed on the marble base. Then the horse addressed her again.
“Can I help you, my dear?”
Emily tried to run again. Nothing. She tried with all her might to scream, to get the attention of a passerby. But her voice failed her too. Her body had entered an immoveable state of shock and her only option left was to prepare herself for the eventuality that she was to be eaten by a talking statue. She closed her eyes and waited for the end.
She braced herself for the pain that was surely to follow. But she only felt the breath of the horse rustling through her hair. The cool air felt refreshing after the long run. Emily slowly opened one eye, and then the other. She was still face to face with the statue.
“What a strange specimen you are,” said the horse.
Emily swore she smelled a hint of carrots in the horse’s breath.
“Why are you crying, my dear?” the horse inquired.
“I’m not crying,” Emily squeaked. She didn’t stop to question why she was responding to the statue.
“Am I dreaming?” she thought to herself.
She began wiping away the evidence of her tears.
“This is no dream,” responded the horse, as if it heard Emily’s thought. “There’s no need to lie.”
Emily took a deep breath and tried to compose herself. She thought about Big Roscoe, about dangling upside down in front of her entire class. She buried her face in her arms and began to sob.
“I’m never EVER going back there,” Emily said through the tears.
“Where?” asked the horse.
“To school. I’m never going back.”
That’s when Emily noticed a rumbling in the distance, like a large boulder was rolling down the city streets. The horse noticed the disturbance too.
“It’s time for us to be going, my dear,” the horse said to the girl.
“Go? Go where?” Emily asked, tears still running down her face.
“There’s no time to explain.”
The rumbling was getting louder.
“No, I can’t just go with you,” Emily replied. “I need to be home. My parents will worry. I don’t know who you are. I don’t even know your name.”
“It’s Spinelli,” said the statue. “I’m a guardian of the city. I can explain more later. But now, it’s time to go.”
The rumbling was louder still. Emily could barely hear the horse over the audible disturbance.
“I can’t –” Emily began, but Spinelli was through with the conversation.
The horse stuck its head under Emily and lifted the girl high into the sky. Emily tumbled onto the statue’s back.
“Hold on!” Spinelli shouted.
Emily nearly toppled off the horse, but at the last moment, she grabbed hold of Spinelli’s mane. She expected the hair to be cold and hard, but she discovered it to be silky smooth.
Emily felt the city air whipping through her hair once again as the horse galloped down the center of the city streets. She felt alive, free. That is, until she looked back over her shoulder, and saw what was chasing them.
Want to find out what happens next? Continue reading with Chapter 3!