New Name, New Identity

You’ve left town—ditching your old, miserable life—hoping to start a new life for yourself. You’ve given yourself a new name, fake background and style. Write about your first encounter in your new town.

Post your response (500 words or less) in the comments below.

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3 thoughts on “New Name, New Identity

  1. kathleenmagner

    Genna reached for her car’s clutch and grasped open air.


    Circling her hand back around the silky wheel of the hybrid, she jerked right and into the parking lot. The jolt made the crystal star dangling from the rearview mirror bounce and stirred the new car scent from the faux-leather seats and unblemished dash. Veering into a stall facing the brick-faced library, she idled between a dusty sedan and the muddied running boards of a dented truck.

    After checking for their drivers and finding the two vehicles empty, Genna flipped down her visor and faced her blue eyes in the vanity mirror. The color seemed brighter surrounded by the hefty tan provided by her three-month sojourn at the equator, one the police had encouraged but had been disinclined to help fund. Her long locks of now ruddy hair curling at her shoulders and the dearth of eyeliner, mascara, or eye shadow added to the stark contrast.

    Brushing her finger across her right eyebrow, Genna scowled, noting a fleck of original blonde requiring an obscuring touchup.

    “It’s fine.”

    Licking the chastisement from her lipstick free lips, Genna flipped the visor back against the ceiling. Her nerves quavered and she couldn’t resist another furtive glance around.

    A field of wheat stretched behind the parking lot, tall stalks swaying in the winds coming off the mountains. The battered cars in the other stalls remained inert and blocked a better view of rows of nearby corn. Nothing but vegetation and metallic dings met her gaze.

    Taking some consolation in her invisibility, Genna snagged her purse, the canvas strap stiff in her hands, and hurried from the driver’s seat. The door’s closing bang made her cringe, the sound too similar to the slaps and smacks dominating the night months past and now a thousand miles away.

    With her eyes on her smeared sneakers, she marched along the concrete walkway beneath an awning shaded in an overgrowth of vines.

    She peeked over her shoulder when the shriek of a hawk being chased off by a pair of sparrows broke the quiet. Wishing the tiny birds luck, Genna reached the library’s front doors and slipped inside.

    The smell of paper and binding mixed with the hush crowding the six sets of stacks arranged perpendicular to poster-cluttered walls. Hunched backed seniors clacked at a bank of four computers while others slouched in plush chairs, reading newspapers or hard covered tomes. One or two of the younger generation hid behind laptops plugged in at scattered outlets, pips in ears, eyes locked on their screens as if the flickering images could aid their escape. A clutch of older women formed a softly chatting queue at the checkout.

    At a reference desk, a snowy-haired woman in a green blouse with a pin naming her Sheila beamed in greeting. Her rosy cheeks plumped like the apples ripening in the distant, hillside orchards, her wrinkles mirroring the rutted fields closer by.

    “Can I help you?”

    …. Click here to read the rest and feel free to leave a comment.

  2. JeSuis71

    I walk out of the shop, newly remade. My black hair is short, shorter than I have ever had it, I got new glasses and I bought a whole new wardrobe, all dressy in some way. I go to the apartment I rented in the middle of Chicago. I put on a pair of khaki pants, and a green and white vertical striped button up long sleeve shirt. I pull out my brand new white iphone and check the time, 3:45. I have an hour until my interview, before putting my phone back in my pocket I look at my contact list, completely empty. For some reason this makes me smile, most likely because it means I successfully left everyone. I walk out of the apartment building and towards the bus station. I wait only a few moments before the bus arrives, the bus is quite full but I find an aisle seat next to a nice enough looking women.
    “May I sit here?” I ask her.
    “Sure,” she says, her eyes locking onto mine, the most beautiful blue eyes.
    In that instant I know that I need to get to know this woman. Not for the old me but for the new me, starting now. Turning to her I say, “My name is…Jonah, Jonah Markay, and yours?”
    “Sophie, Sophie Wodila,” she says, and that is the beginning of the end.

  3. Fade

    We’re being followed.
    At first glance I couldn’t determine her truth; but after my eyes adjusted to the dense darkness I saw a little girl hiding behind a brush. I went up to the girl and told her that it was dangerous to be out at this time at night and that she should return home…
    “I don’t have a home…”
    Her clothing would have disagreed with what she had told me…
    unless she stole them
    and then I realized
    looking into the eyes of that small girl-eyes that were on the verge of being shattered;something that provoked the memory of a beaten puppy. Seeing her shivering in the cold dark of the night while the moonlight took shelter behind a vast curtain of clouds…
    I felt sympathy.
    Surely this girl meant no harm and even if she did I already calculated that she was no threat to us.
    A normal girl would have been in terrible danger if she were to be with us.
    and so, against my own wishes, I was about to leave her be.
    Until she said.
    “I didn’t mean to cause you two any trouble.”
    A slap to a face, a gunshot, something completely unexpected.
    “Did you just say the two of us?”
    She seemed dissonant then, more than she already was.
    She shivered for a moment before answering.
    “Your with her aren’t you?” And she pointed to Honey.
    “You can see her?”
    It was at that moment that I knew this was no coincidence
    this girl was destined to find us.
    At that moment-despite knowing that the consequences were still a high possibility- I decided upon what I’d do.
    “Come with us.”
    She couldn’t speak.
    “It’s alright…”
    I told her that she wasn’t alone anymore.


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