There was a plane to the US preparing to take off from Madrid. It was a perfect August day, still more summer than fall. People were mostly of good cheer: some still sleepy or teary-eyed from the pains of separation. Then there was Clarisa. At eighteen, it was odd for nobody to see her off, but then again, she preferred it that way. The only person that would want to ‘see her off’ anyway would be the last person she wanted to see. Clarisa took a breath and sighed, fingering her passport, green card hidden inside. It had taken the better half of five years to save up enough money for this. She was finished with school, had no family, and was legal in all sense of the word to leave. Europe was old and overcrowded, suffering a drought of opportunity. In the US, though, Clarisa saw freedom, space to grow and live. The nation had been a beacon of desire for her for the longest time, and to finally go there fed the fire of joy in her heart, however small.
It was just a shame that she had to do this alone. Ah well, no use dwelling on unavoidable things now. Clarisa was led to her seat and adjusted to the small space, glad to have gotten the window seat. This way she could avoid catching anyone’s attention. She could watch the frost kiss the little window, the clouds roll by over the ocean. Clarisa was a dancer, unmarried, and exceptionally good at English. Her health was as good as it could get—good enough to live in the United States—and her hands were steady. She could start a small business, or if that didn’t work out she could just go to school and learn to do something useful. The plane began to move, gaining enough speed to take off and cut Clarisa off from all she knew. No turning back now. Not that she wanted to. Running away was a strenuous thing, after all. For Clarisa, doing this meant so much more than having a higher chance at success. She had spent 5 years as an owned trinket, a punching bag, and a warm body in bed. She had to be free, even if it meant doing something as drastic as this.
And now she had done it. Clarisa remained stoic until they were over the ocean. Only then did she smile, small and precious.