He was scrambling around the apartment now. What he was trying to orchestrate would take all his nous. How could he leave without a trace while letting his loved ones know he was safe?
His phone began to ring. The authorities were unscrupulous with their time management and he had missed the first checkpoint. They wouldn’t be worried just yet. He had missed checkpoints in the past. Their worry would begin when he missed two in a row. Something he’d never done.
So he couldn’t be swayed, he switched his phone to silent to disengage from the guilt.
As he packed necessities into a small rucksack he thought of ways to contact his friends and family. Nothing came to mind. The establishment would be clinical with their search and would stop at nothing to find him. Their hunt would be amplified by desperation.
He would have to leave now. It wouldn’t be long before they sent people to check on his whereabouts. There was only one thing he could do.
In order to make a clean break, he couldn’t leave any hints. This isn’t some fairytale, he realised. Yes, they’d be distressed. Angry too. But he had spent the entirety of his life helping and pleasing others. Now was the time he did something for himself. Besides, he could try and make contact with them once the dust had settled. Lord knows how long that would be.
He left the apartment. He had played around with the circuitry of the keycard slot making it difficult to open the door without a battering ram.
As he limped down the steps, he was overcome with excitement. This was it. He was breaking away. He pushed away thoughts of, “What would they think?” and enjoyed the euphoria of the situation.
He opened the door and pulled a cap firmly over his head. He glanced back at the apartment block one last time, smiled and walked away.