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Retrograde

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Wealthy and beautiful Angela thinks no one will ever know about her dark, terrible past. Being thrown out by her stepdad and having no place to go, she is forced to do things for survival. After developing an application that made her rich, she became a popular figure; of course, everyone wants a piece of the pie, even the person who hates you the most. Angela never for a moment thought someone would threaten to expose her. Now she's being given the alternative. You will do as I say or pay the price. Her past has reared its ugly head. Angela has to find the blackmailer and deal with him by whatever means. “Run, Angela,” Jessica screamed as Angela sprinted through the woods with wind bustling through the branches of the trees, making the leaves howl in their symphony. Running along the gravel path in the woods makes her realize how intricate the clash between weather and nature can be. Two natural forces are both in harmony and constantly fighting. The rain would come down any second; its distinct smell filled the air. Plush, intertwining clouds pushed their grey front toward where I stood. The trees continued protesting against the wind as it blew their seeds. Maple seeds twirled down, only to get stuck on my clothes and the creek. Angela stopped by the river's edge; she placed a hand on her chest, her heart wouldn't stop raging against her rib cage, and she fought to keep silent a small whimper. Her heart was so loud she feared it would give her away; it was so loud in her ears; she thought the creature that used to be someone she once trusted would hear it and tear it from her. "Who is there?” She screamed, looking back and hearing footsteps getting closer. When she stopped and looked back, a man with a mask stood holding a knife; who was this person? Being diagnosed with anterograde amnesia made her unable to create new memories; her past kept haunting her. Is it the same person who is always killing her in her dreams?

Chapter 1

(Truth or Dare) Pale and trembling in shock. Angela slams down the receiver, not waiting for the unknown blackmailer to finish. Her knuckles were white from gripping the phone. “OH, God!” She whispers. Please let this not be real.

Let me wake up and find it was just an awful dream. It can not be happening. Not now, after finally burying the dark past. Who was this caller? How did he know her name?

How does he know so much about her and her past? Even her phone number? Dazed and trance, Angela walks to her kitchen with unsteady legs. She takes a glass to fill it with water; her throat feels dehydrated.

Blindly she looks out her kitchen window, her mind returning to the caller's words; I know what you did with Cassie. I know you hide the body. How does he know so much?

Does she ask herself? How does he know Cassie?

Angela took a cup of cold water; Angela's eyes took in the beauty of the sunset.

The pool where she had a lovely relaxing swim reflects a golden color; the evening sky does not have wind, all so beautifully quiet and peaceful.

Angela looks up at the sky, praying. Please, God, help me. Slowly she turns back and goes to the lounge; her eyes glazed with pain; she looks at the portrait of her beautiful mother.

I miss you, Mom, she whispers.

I wish you were here to help me through this. The pain was hard to deal with after losing her beautiful, vibrant, loving mother less than a year ago.

How could she turn to her dad? Multi-millionaire businessman, always in the press, moved in very influential circles only his closest friends knew he hired these chalets for whoever wanted a break away from marital life to have a fling away from prying eyes.

Slowly with leaden legs, Angela walks to the full-length mirror and stares at her reflection; her typically beautiful and bright sea-green eyes stare back at her hauntingly.

People always told her she had inherited her mother's beauty, the flawless olive skin, and waist-length hair as sleek and shiny as a seal.

Women looked at her with envy. Many stared in lust at her perfect shapely body. But now, she saw nothing of it, only the mocking voice of her blackmailer banging in her head.

So many years have passed since that fateful day.

So young and carefree, she and Rogan were so much in love that Angela thought nothing could come between them. Rogan was then twenty-one back then, and Angela was eighteen. Angela met Rogan on campus; he was so handsome.

Angela stares blindly out the bus window as it goes through the karoo. Her beautiful green eyes blurred with tears. She does not notice the golden cloak of sunrise in all its magnificent beauty shining on the long green, golden meadows as the bus passes, nor does she see the horses and cows grazing in tranquility on this beautiful morning.

Angela, an eighteen-year-old, sees nothing; her heart feels like it shattered into a million pieces; she's been on the bus for approximately eight hours, and she's filled with fear of the unknown future as her home. Friends and all she loved seem now so very far away.

Her father's harsh words were unforgettable.

Closing her eyes, she tries to block out that horrible memory of just three days ago; Angela lies in her bedroom with earphones listening to music without a care.

Her brother Jack had opened her door and told her dad was calling, "Angela, are you deaf?" Knowing her father was easily upset, she went downstairs and saw her Mom and dad looking at her solemnly. Thinking it was because she had not yet cleaned the lunch table, she laughingly said, "I'm sorry, Mom, I prepared the table," but her mother remained silent with eyes downcast. Angela was nervous and wondered what she could have done to upset her beloved parents.

Angela's father was a tall, stern man with greying hair. He loved his family dearly but was very strict with her and her brother Jack. Angela stood looking at her dad. His grey eyes seemed stormy as he asked her.

“Madam, what are your plans? You've been lazing around hanging out with that good-for-nothing Keegan. Have you decided which campus you are going to attend?”

Angela stood frozen. She had just gotten back.

She did not even think of campus or leaving her beloved home. Why was her father behaving this way toward her?

Looking at her Mom for an answer, her mother remained silent.

Angela looked at Dad with shock and stammered, "but dad, I don't want to go to campus, I don't want to leave my home, I don't want to leave you, Mom and Jack, please, Dad," Angela pleaded, tears running freely down her cheeks. Angela went to her mother, sitting quietly in the chair.

She knelt and took one of her mother's cold hands in hers, pleading, "Mom, please don't send me away to campus, please; I beg of you and Dad; this home is all I've ever known, please, please. I beg of you."

Then she heard her father's voice, like a death sentence, say, “Well, madam, you have three days to decide whether it's either campus where you will be for a few years or your mother, and I will send you to a convent.”

"Dad, that's not fair, three days?" said Angela.

"Well, you have to make it enough time, three days are enough time for you to decide, and we do with this conversation." said her dad, Mr. Fox, who turned around and looked over at his wife Jenny, Angela s Mom.

She stood in silence. The last time she interfered in an argument, he threatened to leave her, and she needed his financial support.

Angela looked over at her Mom, who had set the table and felt a sudden loss of appetite.

Jenny could see her stubborn husband's hostile glare, face contorted with rage, bared teeth, curled lip, and clenched jaw. She could see he was angry; his unbrushed curly hair looked messy.

Angela tried her best not to cry any more than she did; her father was a heartless, selfish man who always wanted his way; Angela could not understand why her mother had put up with much of his drama; he did not deserve her.

After eating silently, Angela went upstairs and closed the door. She thought of running away, but where would she go? Angela put on her headset and listened to music until she fell off to sleep, waking up to the sound of thunder; she glanced over at the clock; it was only 11 pm, and the house was quiet; Angela walked over to the bathroom when she heard sounds coming from her mother's room. It sounded as if her mother and father were still up; as she padded over and heard a slam, she heard her mother crying, "shut up" said her dad, “You need to stand by me when I make a decision; I should have left the day you cheated on me with Mike.”

“I will walk out, and you can take care of your daughter," Mr. Fox, "no, please, I am nothing without you." her Mom pleaded; “Mike was the biggest mistake. It was one night I thought she was yours.” “That's why I am sending that girl away. Every time I look at her, I see Mike's face," said Mr. Fox.

Were they talking of her? Is this *ssh*l* John not her dad? "Please stop, John,” Jenny pleaded; Angela went to the kitchen, took a knife, and gripped it tightly as her knuckles turned white. Angela hated this man her Mom was with; maybe he disliked her because she reminded him of her dad.

Angela walked over to her parent's room; she was about to open the door when her brother saw her. "What are you doing?” He whispers.

She signaled him to come closer, "place your ear against the door," she whispered. "Is that Mom and Dad fighting again?"

Angela nodded, and the room light went on, "let's go back to the room," whispered Jack.

They returned to Jack's room, "What are you doing with that knife?" Said, Jack

Angela looked through the window; all she felt was anger and hatred, all these years, she had let this bully she had called her dad control her, and now she had found out he was not her dad.

Maybe it is a good thing they aren't blood-related; she is much better off away from this place; Jack saw tears rolling down his sister's cheek; this was the first time he had seen his sister cry; he leaned in to hug her "What are you doing?" She snapped, realizing he did not know she was his stepsister."

"I was about to hug you; why are you being so weird?"

"Sorry, I am fine."

Angela stood up and walked back to her room. It had started to rain; something about the rain had made her feel calm even though the temperature had dropped.

"I do not need three days to decide; I already know where I am going."

Angel had fallen asleep, waking up to a loud noise; she had looked out the window. The sky was tar-black, and the large clouds moved towards the house.

She heard a tapping on the window, which became a pitter-patter. People ran for cover outside. Umbrellas opened as the clouds spat out their beads of water. Puddles began plinking as the rainfall became heavier. The roofs of the cars danced with spray, and she could hear the murmuring of the rain through the window.

It sounded like angry bees buzzing; it began as a whispering. The day had been beautiful, and the sky was like a dome of plasma blue. The clouds had looked like airy anvils drifting under the gleaming disc of the sun.

The moon seemed to turn the leaves into a flaming patchwork of colors: scorching yellows, lava reds, and burnished browns. It added an alien glamour to a perfect scene.

She had looked up at the clock; it was three in the morning, and everyone was asleep. Angela covered her head and put on her headset, turning it loud to her favorite song; she had drifted off to sleep.

Chapter 2

When she was done, she headed downstairs; her mother had set the table for breakfast.

Angela somehow had a feeling of confidence and an urge to get out of the house. Not only had her mother lied to her about her biological dad, but she had made her live with this monster all her life.

Angela felt sick in her stomach looking at this coward of a man.

"Good Morning, Mom and Dad."

Her mother looked up, surprised at her sudden tone of happiness.

"Good Morning, honey," said her Mom, "how did you sleep with this storm?"

"Like a baby," she answered, sounding cheerful." The sun was beaming through her blinds, causing the woman to stir. Usually, waking up was a simple task for Angela; she was a morning person; she groaned when the first beam of sunlight hit her face.

Angela picked up her nightstand alarm clock and looked at the time.

"Ugh, why is it so early?" She placed her clock back on th

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