MaryAnn and Heidi raced down the alleyway laughing as they barely escaped a gang that pursued them. The twosome turned the corner and dissolved into giggles, collapsing against the brick building and gasping for air. Heidi brushed a strand of her earth brown hair away from her eyes, smiling.

"Crikey, those guys are never gonna catch us!" Heidi laughed.

MaryAnn smiled, pulling her own hair behind her ears and patting the brown leather duffel bag they had with them. She took in the New York City air with a deep breath and shook her head. "Nah, even though we aren't in gym anymore, they'll never keep up with us."

"Guess again sweetie." A cold, cruel voice mocked.

MaryAnn and Heidi jumped up to meet face to face with the town's worst enemies, Drake and Brent. The worst serial killer paled in comparison to what the terrible gangster twosome had been known to do. Unfortunately, Heidi and MaryAnn had been in their sights as the next subjects for the past two years now, and Drake and Brent weren't known to give up. MaryAnn stood and glared at the tall, blonde haired, dark green eyed character facing her.

"Drake, do you guys ever give up?" MaryAnn snapped.

Brent, who had red hair and cold gray eyes, grinned at Heidi playfully. "Now why would we do that?"

Heidi looked at MaryAnn, their eyes meeting and saying the same thing. The two boys should never have hesitated their actions. Heidi looked back at Brent and shrugged.

"Because of this."

MaryAnn instantly punched Drake in the groin as Heidi head-bashed Brent into the brick wall. The two girls let out a loud hoot and ran out of the alley faster than the speed of light, only stopping at the four-way intersection. Heidi grabbed MaryAnn and pointed to a Cathedral directly across the intersection.

"Look, they'll never step foot inside a church!" Heidi exclaimed.

The two girls looked back to see Drake and Brent gaining quickly on them as they hesitated movement, waiting for the right chance to go. It was in times like these that New York traffic proved most sadistic. Indeed, it seemed almost to have a twisted personality of its own. MaryAnn watched constantly as she heard her own heartbeat racing in her ears. Where was an opening?

"Get back here you stupid sluts!" Drake yelled.

By sheer luck, an opening came. Not bothering to bring back a typical remark, MaryAnn grabbed Heidi and bolted across the street to the Cathedral yard. Upon reaching the yard, both girls discovered the doors were locked. Heidi let out a groan and MaryAnn pounded on the door with frustration.

"What happened to the concept of sanctuary?" She yelled, banging on the door with her fist once more before leaning her head against it with a whimper.

"MaryAnn, calm down. . ." Heidi said, tapping her shoulder.

MaryAnn looked back in worry to see Drake and Brent crossing the street. Why did that crosswalk have to come now? As Heidi continued to tap MaryAnn, she let out a whine and out her head in her hands.

"Shoot, we're toast."

"You're not as dead as you think. There is a God after all." A voice said casually.

MaryAnn snapped her head up to see Heidi now near a relatively tall boy with dark brown hair and brown eyes. Her jaw dropped, then she shoved her hands in her pockets and cleared her throat, looking down to avert their eyes, shutting her mouth.

"Well, now I feel like a cretin." MaryAnn managed.

The boy smiled and laughed lightly in good humor. He looked at MaryAnn, then at Heidi, then at the two approaching gangsters.

"The back door is open to the choir." He said, pointing to the cathedral with a shrug.

MaryAnn shrugged and nodded, then darted around the corner to a doorway with Heidi. They found a door and burst through, promptly regretting the action. The instant the two of them entered, the sound of the choir ceased and a group of people stared at them as if they were a pair of catburgulars.

"Oh dear --."

"Don't you dare take the Lord our God's name in vain child! Do you not know your ten commandments?" A graying woman snapped, stepping down from her music stand.

The woman had a dominating appearance, and it was clear she ruled the roost around here. One would doubt if she even answered to the priest, with the way her nose turned and her pale eyes watched like God himself. Her salt and pepper graying hair was in a bun, and the pair of glasses perched on top of her head like a bird were hints of a grandmother dominance. Heidi cringed and shut her mouth tightly.

"Do you?" The woman pressed.

"Yes ma'am." Heidi squeaked.

"Good. Now what are you doing here? Playing pranks on the Cathedral for a little Christmas in New York, or just intruding on our practice?"

"Neither ma'am, we were just --." Heidi started, but again the woman stopped her. It was becoming an aggrivation to both girls that they couldn't even say a word without critisism.

"Just what? Going to Mass in THOSE clothes?" The woman sneered, pointing at their outfits.

It was just then that MaryAnn and Heidi registered what they were wearing. Heidi had her brown hair in a messy bun, with an 1800's style hat on it, while donning a pair of baggy black capris, a button up sleeveless white shirt, and a black scarf around her neck. The outfit was completed with a pair of tennis-shoe like sandals. MaryAnn, in turn, had on a pair of skin tight jean flares, a blue baggy men's Air Force t-shirt with cut off sleeves, a backwards baseball cap with the same insignia, and a pair of army boots. The door opened once again and the boy who helped the twosome entered. He stopped upon seeing the commotion.

"Oh, I'm sorry. Ms. Reina, Drake and Brent were chasing these two, so I told them to come in. I should have come with them." He apologized.

The woman, apparently Ms. Reina, sighed and shook her head. Then she looked at Heidi and MaryAnn.

"My apologies, I wasn't aware that Joshua brought you in. Mass is in an hour and we need an extra alter server. Choir is always open for new people as well. You are more than welcome to either." Ms. Reina said.

MaryAnn nodded appreciatively. "I'll take alter server. I've done that before."

Heidi cleared her throat and looked around. "I've been in choir before, so I can do that."

Joshua smiled at Ms. Reina, then a look of rememberance came upon his face. "You left this outside. I figured I had better get it to you."

He pulled out the large duffel bag MaryAnn had been carrying while they were being pursued. MaryAnn, in turn, let out a squeal and ran over, taking the duffel bag and hugging Joshua.

"Thank you sooo much!" MaryAnn said in sheer joy, hugging the duffel bag.

Joshua only nodded, still suprized at the hug of gratitude. MaryAnn shrugged then looked at Heidi, swinging the duffel bag over her shoulder.

"I'm gonna get changed into something more appropriate, Hoity. Lemme know when ya need the bag." MaryAnn announced, then she headed off to find the bathrooms.

Upon arriving in the women's bathroom, MaryAnn quickly changed into a pair of gray flared slacks, a crisp, button-up black sleeveless shirt, and a pair of black dress ankle boots. MaryAnn then put on her silver hoop earrings, a silver chain, and put her hair in a bun. When she exited out of the bathroom, she kneeled down in the front pew and began to pray silently to herself. Joshua quietly came over and sat down next to her, waiting for her to finish. When MaryAnn sat up, he looked at her curiously.

"You were sitting there for a long time." Joshua commented.

MaryAnn shrugged. "I had a lot to pray about. I have a tough life, so I don't get to come to church as often as I like."

Joshua smiled. "Well, as long as you come here more often I'll be happy."

MaryAnn laughed. "I'll try. Come on, we better get ready for Mass."

Joshua nodded and lead MaryAnn to prepare for the Mass. Things were looking up for the two teenagers already.