Running Scared


Running Scared.

by

Susan Brown

Chapter 1

Dad kept looking in the rear-view mirror. He was nervous for some reason and I could see the beads of sweat on his forehead as he turned his head.

‘Daddy, what's wrong?’, asked Suzie who was sitting behind me on the back seat.

My little sister Suzie might have been young, well eleven is young in my opinion, but even she could sense that something wasn't quite right. I had had my thirteenth birthday just two days before and knew it all, or thought I did anyway.

‘Don’t worry honey,’ he replied, his voice sounding strangely shaky.

Dad was now almost constantly looking in the mirror. I looked behind and could see a black 4X4. It didn't seem all that close and I had no idea why Dad was worried.

‘Dad...’

‘Don’t talk for a minute Jason, I need to concentrate.’

Our Jaguar’s engine, although normally very quiet, was now racing as we increased our speed. Looking back, I could see that the 4X4 had also increased speed and was edging ever closer to us.

I shut up and started to worry, a lot. Dad was the calmest person I knew. He worked for the government, but never talked about it. I once laughingly asked if he was a sort of James Bond, 003 and a half or something and he said that he was a civil servant and then abruptly changed the subject, telling me not to be silly.

I looked behind through the rear window and noticed that the black car had disappeared, that was all right then. There was another car behind, about two hundred metres away. Funnily enough, the car looked like the same model as the other one, but it was silver rather than black.

I relaxed a little bit, but Dad kept looking in the mirror and Suzie had gone very quiet, very unusual for her. I liked to call her motor mouth and she never much liked that for some reason.

We were on the way to our Christmas holiday. Dad had booked an air B and B somewhere in Wales. He told us that it would be a surprise and that we would love it, lots of sand and sea and plenty of things to do even though it was winter, the beach would be cold and the sea freezing. Let's face it, Dad was a bit of an optimist! We rarely had a holiday due to Dad’s work and the fact that Mum had died of cancer just about a year before. We all missed her lots and not a day passed that I didn't think of her and want her to come back.

‘Jason, Suzie listen to me, don’t say anything. I haven't got time for questions. We might be in danger, correction, we are in danger.’

I could hear the catch of breath coming from my sister, or was that me?

‘Suzie, my case is on the floor behind my seat, give it to Jason.’

‘Why?’

‘Don’t ask questions sweetheart, just do it.’

I leaned back and Suzie handed the slightly worn leather case to me.

We were going quite fast now and were overtaking other cars. I looked at the speedometer and saw that we were going at close to 90 miles an hour.

I didn’t like going fast. Alright, I’m a wimp, but that’s how I feel.

‘Jason, I am speeding up because we are being followed and I am trying to get away from them. There are at least two cars alternating in the pursuit, maybe more. These are bad people and we do not want to be caught. I think that this car might have a tracker and that is why they were able to find us, despite my not telling anyone where we were going. I should have swept the car for bugs but I didn’t - stupid mistake. The case is free from bugs or trackers though, so don't worry about that. In the case are a number of papers.’

He stopped for a moment and looked in the mirror.

‘We seem to have dropped them for the moment, but they will be back. Let me explain as briefly as I can what’s happening. I work for a government department, a secret one. My job is in security and we have had a number of leaks which meant that some of our people have been compromised; two have been killed and a number are in custody in unfriendly foreign countries. I have been close to getting answers as to who is responsible for this, but I haven't gained enough evidence yet. These people are worried that I might expose them and they are out to get me. At the moment I can’t trust anyone in my department or even higher up in the chain. Twice I have been close to having a fatal accident. Once when a lorry nearly ran me down and another time when on a crowded station platform. I was pushed from behind and only avoided being thrown in front of a train by some nifty footwork.’

I was looking at Dad as he spoke. I could see the beads of sweat on his forehead and icy grip that he had on the steering wheel. He kept looking behind. I glanced at the speedo, we were now doing over a hundred miles an hour and everything was going by in a blur.

‘The trip to Wales was a bit of a fib, one that I told anyone who would listen to me about where we were supposedly going. I wanted us to have a sort of head start before the crap hit the fan. I have a cottage in the hills nearby; it’s stocked up with food and other necessities. My great aunt left the cottage to me when she died. I have kept that fact secret as I wanted a bolt hole if anything did go wrong and I have been making plans about keeping us all safe until I can get to the bottom of what’s being going on at work. I’m getting close to finding answers but not close enough. I now realize that I have to disappear for a bit and do some deep digging. I wanted you to stay close to me, but I can see that that would be too dangerous.

‘About a mile up the road, I am going to pull over. I want you to get out and run up the small lane. At the top of the lane, turn left and then right at the end of that lane. The cottage is on the left and its called Rainbows End. The key is in the case together with a mobile phone for you to use. It’s clean and non-traceable to me - what’s known as a burner. I have the number and I will contact you when I can, but kids, you will be on your own for a while. Trust no-one and try to keep safe. Right, get ready to run. Don’t forget my case and your rucksacks. I love you both, remember that.’

We went around the corner and skidded to a stop in a small lay-by and I was out of the car in seconds and so was Suzie.

We didn’t have a chance to say goodbye. He was gone with a screech of tyres and before we knew it, we were running up the lane as fast as we could go. Suzie was crying and so was I. She tripped and I picked her up. It had all been so sudden. We were supposed to be going away on a nice holiday, with beaches and lots of things to do. It was to be our first proper holiday since Mum died and we were all looking forward to it. Now this had happened.
Dad had left us.

~*~

Looking back, I could see that we hadn't been followed. We stopped for a moment and I could hear nothing other than our laboured breathing. Looking at Suzie, I could see that she was in quite a state, she was sobbing quietly and looked terrified. Well, I wasn’t in much better shape and the shock of all that had happened was weighing down on me.

‘Come on Suze,’ I said shakily, ‘let’s keep going.’

Holding Suzie’s hand, we walked as fast as possible up the narrow lane and went around a bend and then another one. Then, as Dad had said, there was a cottage on the left, surrounded by a tall hedge with a gap where the wooden gate was. The sign on the gate said Rainbows End. Without pausing, I pushed the gate open and we went through.

The garden was a bit overgrown and the lawn definitely could do with a trim, but the cottage itself looked nice and I noticed in passing that it had a thatched roof.

The door looked quite solid, maybe oak. I tried the door handle, it was locked, of course. Thinking for a moment, I had a bright idea.

Letting go of Suzie’s hand, I put the case on a garden bench and opened it. I rummaged about a bit and then in a pocket of the lid, I found a key. Closing the case, I went over to the door with Suzie shadowing me closely. I had never seen her like this and I could tell that she was in a bad way. Well, I wasn’t feeling much better myself.

Holding my breath, I tried the key in the lock. I sighed with relief as the key fitted the lock and the door opened without any problems. Picking up the case, I went into the cottage with Suzie following closely behind like a little shadow. I shut the door behind us and locked it. I noticed that there were also bolts on the top and bottom and I pushed the bolts across. Better safe than sorry as Mum used to say.

There was no hallway, the door led straight into the sitting room, which was small and cosy, straight out of the nineteenth century or maybe earlier. It had old furniture and it looked like it hadn’t changed since dad’s aunt’s days. But it was clean and tidy and didn’t have any sort of musty smell.

‘Jason, where’s Daddy? I’m scared, I want to go home.’

I looked at her. She had been crying and her eyes were red. Her face was white, without any colour. I could see how scared she was; heck I was terrified myself!

‘We can’t go home Suze, we could be in danger there. Maybe the bad guys will try to get us, so that they have a lever to get to Dad. You know, like if he doesn’t give himself up to them, something bad will happen to us if they find us.’

I went over to the window and looked out; no sign of any bad men just the occasional bored looking sheep in a field in the distance. Mind you, what do bad men look like? They don’t have a label on their forehead to say that they were nasty or anything like that?

I wondered where Dad was. I was missing him already. I was trying to stay strong for Suzie’s sake, but I had to admit that I was scared witless, worried about Dad and wondering if the bad men had caught up with him or not. He was a good driver, a very good driver; he used to go rallying when he was younger and had won trophies but still...

To be honest, I just wanted to curl up and cry but I had to stay strong for Suzie.

‘Dad will be fine,’ I said turning back to her and giving her a hug, ‘he’s clever and he knows what he’s doing. It’s just a matter of time before he gets in touch with us. Let's see what’s in his case.’
I went over and opened it. Inside were some papers, some money rolled up in a rubber band, a mobile phone and a small sealed envelope with my name written on it with PRIVATE printed across the top.

‘Suzie, why don’t you go into the kitchen and see if there is anything we can eat and drink. Look in the fridge, Dad said that he had stocked up on things.’

‘Okay,’ she said uncertainly as she walked off.

The fact that she didn’t argue with me showed how upset she was. I sighed and walked over to the settee and sat down.

Looking at the envelope, I was a bit reluctant to open it. It just seemed like it would be bad news. It had to be bad news, otherwise, why would Dad have written it?

I could hear Suzie, clanking about in the kitchen, so I hoped that I wouldn’t be disturbed.

Taking a deep breath I slit open the envelope and pulled out the letter:

Dear Jennifer,

I stopped and gasped. What was all this? I couldn’t believe it…no, no, NO!

My hand shook and my heart thumped hard as I held the paper and continued to read:

Yes honey, I said “Dear Jennifer”.

You think that I didn’t know? Well you are wrong. I have known for a long time. Your Mum and I discussed this many times before she died. We knew that you feel that you are a girl. One of your mum’s biggest worries (mine too) was how you would cope with being in the wrong body without her being there to help and guide you to making the right decision. Since you were small, we noticed that you had no real interest in being and acting like a boy. You played dress up all the time when you was little and you always gravitated towards girls’ clothes rather than boys in your playgroup and nursery.

When you grew older and went to proper school, you seemed to draw into yourself. You never asked friends around and were never asked over to birthday parties and other fun things kids do. Your teachers were worried about you, as we were. We spoke to doctors and other professionals advice and we were told that you should find your own way and if you needed help, be there for you. We so much wanted to talk to you about it, but there never seemed to be the right time or moment that we felt would be right to broach the subject with you. For that I feel guilty. We had decided that if you said nothing soon, we would bring it up with you and try to be as supportive as possible.

Then your mum got ill and your problems were sadly put aside.

All too soon, Katy died and I had to try to keep things together for you and Suzie and that meant not rocking the boat and putting more pressure on you kids. Katy made me promise to look after you both to the best of my ability and always put you first before anything else. But she also said that you both needed a mother. She told me that should I be lucky enough to find someone that I loved and who I think you both would love, then I should go ahead and marry again and make us all happy. I will always love Katy, but I believe my heart is big enough to love someone else.

What I am leading up to is that there is someone else and I hope that soon you will be in the position to meet her. Claire will never replace your mum and she doesn’t want to, but she is a wonderful person and we both hope, if things go right, that you will get to like her and feel the same way that I do about her. She knows about you and has no problem with how you feel about your gender. She just wants to be supportive and do the best for you and Suzie.

If anything happens to me contact her. She knows what is going on and I have purposefully kept my relationship with her private so that she is in no danger. Her contact details are on the back of this letter.
But enough about the future. I know that the above is a bit of a shock to you. I wouldn’t be telling you all this if things were going well. I would have had time for us to talk things through and make decisions as a family.
However, the fact that you are reading this letter means that things have not gone well and that we might all be in danger.

I had two plans for our holiday, the one I told you about in Wales and the contingency plan that I put in place, just in case…

Last week, I came down to the cottage and put everything in place just in case we had to use it as a bolt hole. As I write this letter, I hope that everything has been resolved and we do not need this bolt hole and that you never read this letter.

Well honey, you are reading this and that means that you are in charge of Suzie and you have to look after her until I can get back to you. I know that you are very young, but you are a good and sensible girl, (yes, I do consider you as a girl unless and until you tell me otherwise), and I know that you have a wise head on your shoulders, so you will, I know, do the right things to try to keep both of you out of harms way. If I’m out of touch for longer than a few days, contact Claire and tell her what’s going on. She’ll know what to do. Apart from you two girls, she is the only one I trust at the moment.

The fridge is well stocked and you will have enough food, milk and other provisions to last you at least two weeks. You also have a new mobile phone. It is what is called a burner phone and cannot be traced back to you or me. Do not phone anyone from school or any friends that you may have. Phones can be traced and your location found. My enemies may use you to get back at me. Use the phone in an emergency only. I will contact you as soon as I know it's safe but call Claire if you need to.

Finally Jennifer, I want you to be who you want to be. If you chose to be a girl, then be the best girl that you can be. I love both of you more than life itself and every minute away from you makes me unhappy.

I knew that there might be problems regarding clothes, especially if we had to make emergency arrangements, so I have put some cases of clothes for you both in the bedrooms. I hope that they are okay, as they were bought with a bit of a rush with Claire’s help. For you, there is a Jason case and a Jennifer case, its up to you what you use, but I suggest that if you have to, you should use your girl mode as anyone looking for you would be looking for Jason and not Jennifer.

I leave it up to you as to whether to show this letter to Suzie. I suggest you do. Don’t treat her like a baby, she is a lot more grown-up than you might think!

This letter is long enough.

I’m sure that we will get through this and when we do, we will once again be a happy family.

Know that I love both of you more than life itself and that I will try my hardest to be with you again soon.

Stay brave and strong.

All my love.

Dad XXXXX

I put the letter down. Tears were pouring down my face. I didn’t know what to think. I wasn’t stupid, I knew that Dad may be dead or captured, but I had to think positively for Suzie’s sake as well as mine…

‘Jason, why are you crying?’

I looked at her, she was carrying two glasses filled with cola.

‘Come and sit down Suze.’ I said, patting the settee cushion.

She came over, gave me my drink and sat down.

I wondered briefly whether I should or should not tell Suzie about the contents of the letter, but then I knew that I had to.

I sighed, this was going to be hard.

‘I have a letter from Dad, he wrote it before we left home and I think that you should see it.’

I held it out to her.

She put her drink down on the coffee table and took the letter from me. Her hand shook slightly.

She was quiet, very quiet, as she read the letter. She struggled a bit with it as she was dyslexic, but she got there in the end.

She put the letter down and looked at me. She had tears in her eyes.

‘Blimey Jennifer, what are we going to do?

“You’re not calling me Jason. Aren’t you shocked about all this?’

‘About Dad and the mess he’s in? Yes, who would have thought that he was some sort of James Bond type.’

‘What about me?’ I asked.

‘What about you?’ she said with a puzzled look on her face.

‘Jennifer?’

‘Yes?’

‘He called me Jennifer?’

This was getting very hard.

‘That’s your name, isn’t it?’

‘Erm, yes.’

‘What’s the problem then.’

I took a deep breath.

‘Doesn’t it worry you that I am a girl in a boy’s body?’

‘Oh that, I’ve known for ages.’

‘You what?’

She giggled.

‘I’ve seen you a couple of times in your bedroom wearing girls things. You thought that you were alone, but I came in early from school once. You were at home, one of those stupid teacher training days. You were wearing a blouse and skirt. You looked quite pretty, not as pretty as me of course, but I am very pretty.’

She had a smug look on her face. She wasn’t shy about telling anyone how wonderful she looked. To be honest, I had been envious of her ever since I realised that I couldn’t be like her in the looks department. But hey, nobody is perfect.

I had to get the conversation back on track.

‘What about the rest of the letter.’

‘You mean about Daddy?’

‘Yes.’

‘Daddy is a great driver and is also very clever. He’ll be alright. What do you think about his new girlfriend?’

‘Claire?’

I thought for a moment.

‘Daddy needs someone. I hope that this Claire is good enough for him. I miss Mummy a lot, but life goes on and Daddy has the right to be happy again.’

There was a sad look on her face as she continued.

‘Doesn’t he love Mummy any more?’

‘Of course he does. Daddy has a big enough heart to love more than one person. Just because he now has Claire, that doesn’t mean he loves Mummy any less.’

‘I ‘spose,’ she replied, not sounding very convincing.

‘Look he loves us, doesn’t he?’

‘I know he does,’ she replied indignantly.

‘Well, that shows that he can love more than one person then, doesn’t it?’

She thought for a moment. Then looked at me.

You’re not as silly as you look are you?’

‘Flaming cheek,’ I replied as I hit her with a convenient cushion.

For a few brief moments, we forgot our worries as we had a cushion flight and giggled like silly idiots.
After a bit, we calmed down and just sat hugging each other as we caught our breaths.

She looked up at me enquiringly.

‘So, what now?’

I was in charge of both of us now and I didn’t like the idea of such a heavy responsibility. I took a deep breath.

‘We have no idea where Daddy is or even if he’s safe, so we stay here for a couple of days at least, unless we hear from him.’

‘And if we don’t hear from him?’

I took the letter from her and turned it over.

Claire’s address was there. It was in Devon, that was a long way away, but there was a phone number and in case of emergency written beside it.

‘I suppose that we’ll have to get in touch with Claire and see what she says.’

Where does she live?’ asked Suzie.

‘Devon.’

‘That’s a long way from here.’

‘Tell me about it. Look, let’s give it a couple of days and see what happens. Daddy will probably ring and he’ll tell us what to do.’

Suzie looked upset.

‘What is it sweetie?’ I asked.

‘I’m worried about Daddy,’ she whispered.

I gave her a cuddle.

‘I know, so am I, but he knows what he’s doing.’

~*~

Despite all our worries, we were both hungry and thirsty so we had some toast and jam and a cup of tea.
After that, we went upstairs to have a look around.

The cottage wasn’t very large and there were just two bedrooms and a bathroom leading off the narrow landing.

The bedrooms were at either end of the landing, the bathroom being in the middle. We turned left and walked into what appeared to be the main bedroom. It was sort of old fashioned with furniture that hadn’t been changed for many years.

On the bed were two cases, a label on one said Jason and the other one said Jennifer.

Despite my worries about our father and what might happen to us, I felt a thrill at seeing the case labeled with my girls’ name.

‘Well, you won't need the Jason one,’ said Suzie interrupting my thoughts, in a sort of matter of fact voice.

I looked at her.

‘Are you sure you won’t mind?’

‘Won’t mind what?’

‘My being Jennifer rather than Jason?’

She looked at me.

‘You’ve always been Jennifer really, haven’t you?’

I wondered how a girl so very young could be that clever and wise. I think that I had underestimated her. I wouldn’t do that again.

‘Yes,’ I replied quietly, almost in a whisper.

Suzie picked up the Jason case and put it over in the corner.

‘Well, come on then, let's open the case!’ She said turning back to me.

I felt rather shy about it but nevertheless, with shaking fingers, I pulled the latches back and holding my breath, I opened the case.

I don’t know who had done the packing but it definitely wasn’t Dad. He couldn’t pack a sandwich box neatly; let alone a case full of clothes.

It must have been Claire. So Claire was more involved in this than I originally thought.

With Suzie’s help, we soon had all the contents of the case placed carefully on the bed and the two dresses we found, draped carefully over a chair.

One of the dresses was a sundress, that a bit strange as this was winter and I assumed that the clothes were for me to use in the short term. The other dress was more of what Mum would have called a posh dress, for going out in. It had two layers, the outer layer being fine black lace the base layer being midnight blue taffeta. It was gorgeous, but I had no idea when I would be able to wear it.

The other clothes were more practical but very girly. There were several skirts of various lengths, one being so short that I didn’t think that Daddy would let me wear it.

That stopped me for a moment, as I had just referred to my father as being “Daddy” rather than “Dad”. I had read on a few transgender story sites about kids who suddenly called their father exactly that and I sort of laughed at how unlikely that would be, but, thinking about it, in my mind he had always been Daddy as I suppose Mum was Mummy, so maybe those stories weren’t as far fetched as I thought!

It all seemed so natural

I shrugged, things were changing and I would have to go with the flow and stop thinking about the whys and wherefores.

You might be thinking that Suzie was being rather quiet while all this was happening, but she soon bored with my going ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ and had gone off to her bedroom. From the squeals I heard, I think that she was happy with what she found in her case!

‘Don’t come in for a minute,’ I shouted as I shut the door.

‘Okay,’ was the muffled reply.

I was shy of my body and the last thing I wanted was an inquisitive sister coming I and seeing me in the nuddy.

I picked up a black skirt and cream blouse and put them aside. I decided that I wanted to wear them. To the side were some under things. Several packs of panties, girls socks, tights and wonder of wonder, some bras! The bras were trainer ones with some padding that would give me some shape. One of the things girls want from an early age were nice breasts and I was no different. I didn’t want huge great ones, I wasn’t strange, I just wanted to look like any other girl. I knew that I had nothing on top and some girls of my age wouldn’t have much either and needed a bit of help, so wearing something that enhanced my appearance was OK by me.

I had a few problems with the silky white bra, understandable as I had never worn one before, although I dearly wanted to! I nearly asked for my sister's help, but decided the quicker I got the hang of it the better. In the end, I fastened it in the front and twisted it around so that the cups were in the right place. I had a bit of what Daddy called puppy fat and the cups were by no means empty.

There were some matching panties and I slid them up my legs, marveling how the silky fabric felt on my hairless legs.

Hairless - how long will it be before I started sprouting hairs all over the place, developed muscles I didn’t want and have a voice that no longer sounded very girlie?

Yes, some people thought that I was a girl when I spoke on the phone. You can’t hear your own voice as other people do. I thought that it was just like a normal boy’s, but often I was mistaken for a girl. Nice for me sometimes though, as that is exactly how I feel I am, but embarrassing when I am supposed to be all manly.

After pulling up my panties (my panties, I liked the sound of that), I frowned as there was a little bulge showing. It upset me a bit as I didn’t want any sort of sign that I wasn’t a genetic female. Then I remembered something I read online. I won’t go into details - if you are curious there are plenty of articles online - but after a few wincing attempts, I was able to tuck things away so that I presented a more or less flat area where it wasn’t flat before!
Let’s say it helped that the panties were a bit tight.

After that, I put on the blouse, black tights and skirt.

There were a few pairs of thankfully low heeled shoes in the case, one pair was black and the other blue, in the same style. I slipped on the black pair.

I was finished.

Walking over to the mirror, I had a look at myself and smiled at the girl in the reflection.

I liked what I saw, especially when I parted my hair in the middle with my fingers. My hair had always been on the long side. I had wondered why Daddy had never forced me to cut it. Now I knew why, he knew about me and in his own way was encouraging me.

I only wished that we had talked about it before. Many a time I had wanted to tell him about the real me, but I had always worried that I would be rejected. Things had been bad enough when Mummy had died and I couldn’t bear to think of anything bad happening if I was rejected.

Well, I hadn’t been rejected, but Daddy was in danger and for all I knew fleeing for his life. By extension, my sister and I were in danger too and the immediate future didn’t look too great for Suzie and me.

I saw the frown in my reflection as I realised that talking like that wouldn’t help Suze or me. I had to be positive and hope for the best. It looked like we were going to be on our own for a bit and it was up to me to make the right decisions if that was what needed to be done. Daddy might be back before I had to do something but I had to assume that he might not be able to contact us.

There was a knock on the door.

‘Jennifer, can I come in?’

‘Yes.’

The door opened and there was Suzie, wearing a red party dress. She loved dressing up and this was a lovely dress that suited her. She was very pretty.

She looked at me, her mouth slightly open.

Then she frowned and she started to pout.

‘Not fair, you look prettier than me. I hate you!’

She stepped out and slammed the door.

To be continued..?

Please leave comments and let me know if you want this to continue. Oh, and if you can, please do the kudo-thingie...thanks! ~Sue



If you liked this post, you can leave a comment and/or a kudos!
Click the Thumbs Up! button below to leave the author a kudos:
up
260 users have voted.

And please, remember to comment, too! Thanks. 
This story is 5773 words long.