"C'mon 'Stell! I've found the way out! We can finally go up there and be free!"
I was in Estelle's room, telling her about the entrance that I had found in the government labs shortly after a meeting sit-in. I immediately had gone over to Estelle's house to get her. I knew she would want to come with me. After all, she wanted to see the stars just as much as I did, right?
"Nova...slow down for a second. This isn't something I can just go and do."
"Sure it is! We've been talking about this for years! Now is our chance to get away from here! From everything and everyone who has done us wrong!"
"I don't want to get away from everything though, Nova! What about my family? My music?"
"Your family could come to. And there's music up there."
"How can you know that? You've never been up there. We don't even know if there are others up there or not. What if there are? What if they don't like us?"
"They'll like us. Trust me."
"Nova, I can't just leave right away. I have to think about this!"
"What is there to think about? The government has lied to us this entire time. Do you really want to live in a corrupt society?"
"This is the only life I've ever known...and I've been entirely content until you and your stupid stars came along! You're being selfish! You haven't thought about how hard it might be for me to leave at all! You may hate your family, but I love mine! You may hate the life you have down here, but I've enjoyed mine so far! You want to go to the surface so bad? You go! Have the time of your life! Enjoy the stars! Completely abandon everyone else! Go! Do you hear me? Nova! NOVA!"
I jolted awake. Just a nightmare, thank goodness. And it was my mother calling my name, probably for breakfast.
As I walked down the hall to the kitchen, I couldn't help but think about what Estelle had said to me in the dream. It was hard to swallow, but I had to admit that she was right about it being selfish to expect her to leave her family behind, along with a life she would be content with, for a life full of uncertainty in a place completely foreign to the both of us. Despite being through the most important years of our lives so far together, I knew that her family would be much more important to her.
Slow down, I thought. You don't even know if the surface is really safe yet.
I sat down at the kitchen table.
"Good morning, mom."
"Morning, sweetheart. I'm making biscuits."
"Really? We haven't had those in a while..."
Mom only baked biscuits if it was a special occasion. I glanced over at the calendar. Nope, no one's birthday or anniversary was today. It wasn't a holiday either. So what was going on?
"Well, I noticed that you've been working very hard lately and I feel like you are more than deserving of your favorite breakfast."
She set the plate of piping hot biscuits in the center of the table and sat down across from me.
"Nova...I know something has been on your mind lately. And it isn't just about your fight with your father, because I know you would have been over it by now. Tell me what's wrong."
"I don't feel safe saying it."
"You know you can trust your mother, don't you?"
"I do, but, doesn't Dad have to keep this house under constant surveillance by government law."
"He does, technically, but only the outside. What you say in this kitchen can stay in this kitchen and be between you and me. Now please tell me what's bothering you so much."
I looked down at my plate for a second before taking a deep breath.
"Mom, has Dad been lying to me this entire time about the surface being unsafe? Could someone really leave if they wanted to and be fine up there?"