Hiding Behind A Mask | MASKLESS TRILOGY BOOK 1

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School the next day is somewhat hard for Becca. Her group of friends had been split down the middle, half of them joining the Dark Clan and the other half joining her on the Light.

Her friends on the dark start tormenting them and, well, acting like somebody on the Dark Clan. They’re prideful, boastful, and they make fun of every little thing about the people that are on the Light Clan. She wishes she could tell them off and tell them to leave her alone, but she’d lose her mask for that... and that’s not an option.

She shuffles down the long, dimly lit, white-walled hallways of the school, tan doors interrupting the green metal lockers on the walls. People go in and out of the rooms at different times, and fully masked adults walk around, nodding at the kids that chose to be on their side.

Today is the day she learns what it takes to stay on the Light Clan.

She makes her way to the end of the hall, where a huge set of gray double doors stand before her with handles that you have to push to open them.

Behind the doors is the auditorium, where Becca had chosen her clan. It has blue velvet seats all along the floor and a large stage painted black on the opposite side of the room from where Becca stands. The large blue curtain hangs from the front of the stage, way up high on the dome-shaped ceiling, looking like it weighs a thousand pounds. The walls of the room are rounded, and lights glow every few feet on them. It gives Becca the sense of freedom and it makes her feel like she can breathe better in this room.

It’s a big contrast to what the school looks like. The Clans don’t care about education as much as how the society works. Kids can fail classes and they wouldn’t care, as long as they didn’t take off the masks.

A few other kids in white masks turn around to see who it is that is coming into the auditorium, and then turn back around.

Becca walks down one of the walkways and sits beside a boy who is writing vigorously in a spiral with his left hand. He has multiple blue triangles all over his mask, gradually getting lighter and turning to white as they make their way to the center. It reminds Becca of the sky as it gets closer to the sun, how it gets lighter as it nears it, except the sky doesn’t have triangles on it.

He glances up at her and moves a little bit so she can’t see what he’s writing.

“What is that?” She asks, feeling a little bit nosy.

“Nothing,” the boy turns a little bit more, keeping his eyes away from her. “It’s none of your business, anyway.”

“But I’m only asking. Is it bad?” She presses.

“Are my own thoughts bad?” He snaps and doesn’t talk to her anymore after that.

Becca turns to the front as more kids stream in from the halls, wearing all kinds of bright colored clothes and their decorated white masks. Their mouths, not yet covered, move and smile as they talk and laugh to one another and get comfortable in different seats around the room.

The curtains make their way to each other, meeting in the middle of the stage and the lights go down all of the way, leaving the audience of masked children hidden in the dark.

A perfectly rounded spotlight flashes on and Becca stops breathing.

It’s the man in the white mask and dark clothes from her dream.

“Hello everyone.” His voice sends cold fear down her spine. “Today is the day you will learn how to stay in the Light clan. I am Quill Henson, the leader of both sides.”

Is that possible? Becca finds herself thinking.

“I will bring one of you up here to demonstrate.”


She looks around the room to see if any of the kids she grew up with stand out in any way, shape, or form, but she sees no one out of the ordinary. Everyone is acting just as she is, looking for the victim that will be called up onto the big stage.


She snaps her head forward, and her heart starts to beat quickly. Her breathing becomes shallow as she realizes he’s pointing to her. He’s pointing to her.


No, not her. It only looked like he had been pointing to her, when in fact he was pointing to the boy sitting next to her with the blue and white mask. His head snaps up and his eyes go wide behind his mask. He sets the journal down on the floor beneath his seat and stands up. Becca can see his hands shaking, although he tries to hide his fear as his mouth forms a straight line.

Slowly, he makes his way up to the stage, each step seeming increasingly excruciating. The man in the white mask and dark clothes, Quill, takes the boy gently by the arm and turns him around to face his classmates.

“Everyone has at least a little bad inside of them. There is always going to be evil as long as goodness lives on. It’s that battle between light and darkness that our culture has really brought out, so much so, that other countries have followed suit to us.

“Now, what does it take to stay in the Light Clan? Very little people make it their whole lives, able to take the mask off piece by piece and eventually be buried, not with their mask, but with their face.

“The only way you can do this is by living a good life. A pure life. One of respect, responsibility, satisfaction, obedience, and humility. Break any one of these and you will be removed from the Light Clan. From there, as said at your masking, you will be tried by the Dark Clan.

“Tell me your name,” he says to the boy standing next to him.


“Eduard what?”

“Millen. Eduard Millen.”

“Good, good. Now, tell me, Eduard Millen, have you ever made a mistake?”

“Yes,” he mumbles, looking at the floor. Becca can hear the embarrassment in his voice from where she sits.

“To live as a Light Clan member, can you ever make a mistake again?”

“No, sir.”

“And how does that happen?” The man in the white mask asks.

“Go to school?” The boy asks, not knowing the answer.

The man laughs as he did in Becca’s dream. She shudders.

“Close,” he says. “But no. You have to think about every decision you make and every word you say before they become something outside of your brain.”

“Oh…” the boy sighs, nodding his head. “So what if I make a mistake?”

“I just told you.”

“But what if I make a mistake? What are the options when I go to court in the Dark Clan. What are the verdicts, or whatever they’re called?”

The man nods.


“So I can’t be proven innocent?” The boy exclaims, and Becca can tell he’s getting angry. “What if I didn’t do it?”

The man shrugs. “Have a good life inside the Dark Clan.”

“That’s stupid!” The boy shouts and the man turns to him. Becca gets a strange feeling in the pit of her stomach by the way the man stands. Did the boy make a mistake?

The man shakes his head and laughs again.

“And the ironic thing is, is that I will be the one judging you and proclaiming you guilty. I’ll see you there later, boy.”

“What?” The boy asks in shock.

The crowd of kids gasps and starts to talk amongst themselves, realizing what just happened right in front of their eyes.

“Get ready for a ride,” the man laughs, and several men in black clothes that cover their entire bodies with black masks with different faces and decorations emerge from the sides of the auditorium and sweep in to grab the boy. He shouts and cries for help as they drag him down the steps in front of the stage and through the walkways between the chairs. His cries are heard as they open the doors, letting light flood in, and as they walk into the hallway, laughing madly over the boys voice.

Becca is the last one to turn around and face the stage, her throat feeling like it’s full of cotton balls and her eyes have gone dry.

“Any other questions?”

That’s it for the excerpt! I hope you enjoyed it and decide to check it out. It’s available pretty much anywhere you can get ebooks and paperbacks, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

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