Room, by Emma Donahue

Location: Library

Group 1:
Cal Cooper
Haley Estabrook
Nick Madrid
Dinah King
Gina Micucci
Marshall Brunelle
Suzanne Hamilton
Patric Santerre

Nick Madrid
Option B:

I gazed up at the clock as soon as I awakened. It read 8:21 AM, I began to imagine life outside of here. If only last night’s plan had worked. We could have been free, and Jack could have seen the outside world. “There must be another way,” I thought to myself. I began to think of how much longer we will last in here. We can’t live cooped up in here, we’ll be dead if we don’t leave soon. “Wait a minute! That might just be the answer--” I said astonished. What if Jack can pretend to be dead? He will need to be taken out of here. Once he is, he can run away.But would that work? Is he old enough to understand? I looked down to where Jack is lying down. He turns his head up at me asking me, “Is it Saturday?”“Thats right,” I respond“Cool we wash our hair!” He exclaims. I can see the excitement he has to get rid of that disgusting smell of vomit from last night. As I continue to think about it I tell Jack “Maybe it’s best if we don’t clean up.” He must look and smell as dead as possible. I hear a faint whine from Jack before I tell him why. “You can’t smell clean. I think it’s time to let you in on plan B”. I begin to unravel how everything will play out. I tell him that I have gone over it hundreds of times in my head, and that if we do it right we could be free. “It sounds crazy Jack, and it is incredibly dangerous” I warn him. I take a deep breath. I begin by retelling him the story of Monte Cristo so that he can picture the plan better. “Remember how he escaped? He disguised himself as his dead buddy. That way, when he was being thrown out he escaped.”Intrigued by the story, Jack nods.“Well, your going to pretend to be dead. Just like Monte Cristo. Okay?”“I’m confused. What if he looks at me and thinks I’m alive.”“Well you see, we’re going to use Rug. The next time Old Nick comes back, I’m going to hand him Rug with you in it. I’ll tell him you died, and he will have to take you outside and bury you somewhere.”“No, why I die. And why Rug”“So that he doesn’t realize that it is a trick. Remember Jack being dead is a lot harder than to pretend than being sick. You will have to be still and you can’t let him hear you breathe. If he does he will know it’s a trick.”“Okay. I’m still a bit confused again.”“Look, In order to to bury you he will put you in his old truck. Once your on here, your going to get out of Rug and when the truck stops, you jump off and run. Now listen, don’t stop running, no matter what happens. When you’re running try to find a house or somebody on the streets. When you get to them you’re going to need to yell help. Tell them you have been kidnapped and that you need to save me okay. Once you tell them this they will call the police and they will come and save me, got it?”“But what if I make a wrong?”“Look Jack, we’re going to practice and get this done. It is really important that it works. Okay sweetie?”Jack slowly nods his head. As I begin to pull the rug from under the table, I begin feeling scared. I wonder if Jack really is too young to do this. Jack practices unfolding himself out of the rug, my frightening thoughts are subdued. Jack’s performance clearly shows that he could do this. For the first time in years, hope has inspired me to do everything possible for this to work. Everything possible to give Jack the childhood he deserves. After hours of practice, I sense the readiness in Jack. For the remaining time, I begin to caress Jack, making the best out of the last time I may possibly see him. A tear falls down my cheeks as I kiss the top of Jack’s head.“I think its time to get you inside of Rug. Old Nick could show up any minute,” I tell him. Three minutes later, I hear a beep coming from the door. I brace myself for what is to come. A cool evening breeze enters the shed as I get up holding the rolled up carpet. Old Nick comes into the room carrying a bottle of prescription drugs. “These are for Jack,” He tells me.“He’s dead,” I tell him as tears rush out from my eyes.“Really,” He replies back almost in shock.“Yes and it’s all your fault. You didn’t take him to the hospital,” I tell him enraged. “You’re going to take him and bury him somewhere nice! Don’t bury him in the backyard or I swear! The backyard is too close, I’ll hear him crying. And don’t you dare touch him or even look at him! Do as I say for once, or I will never be quiet again and you will have to kill me too,” I say nearly in a growl.“Okay, okay”I drop down on my knees with my hands on my face. Then, in just a quick second, they were gone. The next hour feels like weeks. I miss Jack, the thought of him killed just breaks me. I wonder if he made it. I start to regret sending him off so soon. But after a long hour of silence I hear a gun being shot breaking some sort of metal. Another shot was fired, this time I realized it was the hinges being shot at. Suddenly the door falls down and for the first time in six years, I felt free.

Cal Cooper:

Option B
The Escape Scene from Old Nick’s Perspective (pages 135 - 142)
She better be grateful for these pills, this stuff’s not cheap. I punch in the code and open the door, slowly so she doesn’t try something crazy again. What’s that rug doing all rolled up? Probably some stupid game they’re playing. “Here you go.” Why does she look so weird? Where’s the kid? I ask if he’s in the wardrobe and she still doesn’t answer, she just stays where she is with a hand on the rug. “Is he in the rug? Are you crazy wrapping a sick kid up like that?” Something doesn’t fell right. “You didn’t come back. He got worse in the night and this morning he wouldn’t wake up.” My stomach drops, this is impossible. My voice is barely audible as I ask her is she’s sure. Stupid question, it’s her kid of course she’s sure. My mind is racing, this wasn’t supposed to happen. I try to offer some comfort but she’s not having it. “You killed him,” she screams at me. “Come on now, calm down.” What the hell am I gonna do, he can’t stay here. I make a move towards the rug and she throws herself in front of it. “Don’t touch him.” I try to explain that it’s not healthy to keep him and that I have to take him away. I tell her I’ll find a place for him. “Not in the backyard.” She sounds serious. I tell her her I’ll take him far away and she seems somewhat satisfied. She makes me swear to not even look at him. I wasn’t planning to anyway. I warn her that I’m picking him up now and through her sobs she howls at me to be gentle, says something about a nice place with lots of trees. Whatever. Anything to get him out of here.
I lift up the rug, he’s heavier than I expected. I try to carry him gently but as soon as I’m outside I switch to the easiest and most comfortable way for me. The kid smells bad, I should hurry and get this over with. I toss him, not exactly as gently as I’d promised, into the back of the pickup. As soon as I hit the street I’m thinking of places to put him. He has to be buried somewhere, I can’t take any chances of a body being found. I chuckle to myself as this last thought goes through my head. Not like anyone would know who he is, or that he even exists. I check my speed as I make my way through the neighborhood, getting pulled over now would be fatal. Why does there have to be so many damn stop signs. I just want to get out of here and get this done. Another one! Wait, what the hell was that? I jump out of the truck. That kid, alive. I should have known, now I’ll kill him for real. He jumps down and takes off down the street barefooted. He’s dead when I catch him, how the hell is he so fast. I glance down the sidewalk and notice a man out for a walk with both his dog and a stroller. That kid’s headed right for them. I try to run faster and just as I get within a few feet of the kid that damn dog jumps up and bites him. Blood streams from his hand as I finally catch up and grab him. I immediately start to carry him back towards the truck but I know what’s coming. “Excuse me,” the man calls after me. “Hey, mister?” I can’t just ignore him. I turn to face him, still holding the kid, and say nothing. “I’m so sorry, is your little girl OK?” He thinks the kid is a girl, who wouldn’t. “Fine,” I say. I start moving again towards the truck, still facing the man. He starts explaining that his dog is normally gentle and would never ordinarily bite someone. I tell him again that the kid’s fine and he points out that his hand is bleeding. I put the kid down but keep a firm grip on his shoulders. “It’s under control.” The man persists and I suggest out of frustration that he mind his own business. I don’t like where this is going. Suddenly the kid pulls a piece of folded paper
out of his underwear and waves it in the man’s direction, I snatch it away. “OK, I don’t like this,” the man says and pulls out a cell phone. “Yes, police, please.”
Panic time. I grab the kid and sprint towards the truck. This is not happening. “I’ve got your plates, mister!” The man starts listing off the truck’s license plate. That’s it, change of plan. I drop the kid in the street and sprint the last ten feet to the truck. The engine’s running and I’m hitting the gas pedal before the door’s even closed. Damn it, the freeway’s in the other direction. I swing around and floor it, narrowly missing the kid still laying in the street. The stop signs can go to hell now, I have a feeling I’m in slightly more trouble than a traffic violation. Where the hell am I gonna go. Doesn’t matter, it’s not anywhere near here. I pick up speed and head towards the town line, leaving chaos and consequences behind me.

Haley Estabrook
Option E:
My eyes opened wide and I shot up, sheets falling off my chest. I was sweaty and my heart was racing. The memory of me running away from Old Nick haunts me still, even thought its been ten years. Often I wake up breathing heavily or I’ll be tangled in my sheets like I was rolled up in Rug, bouncing along in the back of the truck. My feet ache and my chest hurts as if I was running away from that sick man all over again. I used to be sad when I was younger, thinking about leaving Room. Now all I feel is anger and anxiety, that man ruined my mothers life and mine as well, we’ve gotten used to being out in the world but that man sure made it harder. But if he wasn’t around, I wouldn’t be either. This is when I get upset; I am a product of a horrible man hurting and raping my mother.
Ma and I moved out of the apartment that the hospital put us in and we now have a small house near my grandparents. She still worries about me when I walk to school, that one day I may end up in the same situation as her, but I call her as soon as I get to school and when I leave, and that puts her at ease.
As I laid back into my pillow, I threw the fallen covers completely off to one side. The feeling of being wrapped up in something give me anxiety, and tonight was one of those nights. In the morning I’ll talk to Ma about my dream, maybe she had one too, and on that case we can comfort each other. Something that we do a lot, Ma and I, we’ve done it since I was born. I keep her sane, she keeps me stable and unafraid.
Ma has mad a great recovery since being locked up in Old Nick’s shed. She’s going back to school now, at the same time I am since we college time was rudely interrupted. Every Sunday Ma and I go to my grandparents for a brunch, then we spend the day playing around the house. Occasionally Ma will go sit in that old hammock and just think. I can always tell when she thinks about Room, her tears stream down her face, at that point I always go over and give her a hug. She tries hard not to think about it, but it’s not an easy thing to let go of. Her doctor says its best to accept the memories once and then put them away, and that’s what she tries to do. Ma and I are getting along with the help of each other and a kind society. Someday Ma and I will be just like the rest of the world, carefree and happy, enjoying the company of long time friends.