My father had his gun out in a matter of seconds and shot the soldier in the chest, he fell right to the ground. The three kids in front of me turned around and saw the dead soldier, it took them a moment to register what had just happened. The older boy looked at me and my family I guess he was trying to tell whether or not we were trustworthy, which I find quite ridiculous since my father just saved their lives. I tried to imagine what our family looked like to someone who had never met us; we hadn’t had a filling meal in over three months, our baths consisted of only river water and we had a maximum of four hours of sleep everyday because our whole lives revolved around actually staying alive. The older one stepped forward onto the grass and gently laid down the bleeding boy, the younger girl knelt over him, she couldn’t have even been over seven years old “ Obadiah, he passed out we need to do something quick” her voice sounded frantic, the girl took off her jacket and pressed it against the younger boys chest. The boy I now knew to be Obadiah regarded me with a look of helplessness and exhaustion.
“My name is Obadiah and this is my younger sister Sasha. My brother has been bleeding out for the past two hours, I swear we wont steal from you or hurt you, we just need help…Please. ” for a moment no one moved, my parents stood in front of Oliver, Mia and . Without a second thought I sprinted over to our tent and snatched the first aid kit, when I got back my mother had already undone the boys shirt and had started cleaning the wound.
“How bad is it?” Obadiah asked as he knelt down next to his brother, the sight of blood made him cringe.
“Well, it looks like a bullet just skimmed his skin, he really is lucky. If he had just even slightly moved it would’ve hit him right in the heart, Lana could you hand me the disinfectant please. Oliver, how about you take Obadiah and Sasha to the tent and get them some food, the look like they’re starving” as usual my mum knew exactly how to make everyone feel comfortable, she smiled at Obadiah and continued working on his brother. Oliver led the way back to the tent as Sasha skipped along side him together they vanished into the tent. Obadiah still stood there, his white shirt was covered in his brothers blood, pale skin, the exact opposite of mine, gleamed with sweat. His blue sapphire eyes looked tired and beaten, even the ruffles in his hair seemed exhausted. My father left with Mia to the tent, only Obadiah, his brother, my mom and I were left. Obadiah stared out into the forest, his face was plain but I could tell that his thoughts were running viciously, like gears trying to find the right place to click together, he was wondering whether he could trust us. I wanted to break the silence, I needed to know more about him, my curiosity ate at me.
“So Obadiah, tell me, what’s your story?” My mother asked as she threaded his brothers wound shut
“My story?” Obadiah hesitated “There isn’t that much to it, our parents died in the first week of all of this, and we’ve been moving around trying to stay alive since then. That’s it” Adams face remained expressionless, his stiff posture relaxed as his little sister came out of the tent, a wide smile spread over her face.
“ Obadiah can we stay here! It’s so nice we dont have to hide anymore.”Obadiah looked down at her with a smile that didnt reach his eyes
“Maybe Sasha, how about you get some sleep, I have a feeling it’s going to be a long day tomorrow.”
The stars glinted in the sky, I looked at my watch it read 11:30 pm. I had been keeping watch for three hours, my eyes felt heavy and it took effort to keep my head up. I got up to get the aching feeling out of my legs,
“Lana, is that you?” I spun around quickly, my knife stretched out in front of me pointing right at my fathers throat, the tip of the blade only centimeters away from his adams apple.
“Oh my god, I’m so sorry dad I didn’t mean to”
“Its fine, I’m glad you’re alert just don’t’ get too paranoid” I let out a weak chuckle, even that required an amount of energy I barely had.
“ Could you come to the river, I need to talk to you, I don’t want to wake anyone” we sauntered over to the river and sat down, I watched the river flow smoothly, a few moments passed before either of us spoke.
“ What do you want to talk about?” I asked, he pulled out something small from his pocket. It shone in the moonlight and revealed to be a necklace. The small emerald looked like a smooth white stone carved into a small circle, gold laced around the outside. It was beautiful.
“ Whose is that?”
“ I bought it before the city shut-down, I was going to give it to you for your birthday, but I just couldn’t wait.” He reached over and put it on me, he gently set my hair back down and smiled.
“ Thank you so much, I love it” I leaned over to hug him, his large arms wrapped around me, it was the safest I had felt in months. Together we walked back to the campsite, everyone was still asleep except for the wounded boy. He lay propped up against a tree, now that he was awake I could get a better look at him; he had green eyes, and the same brown hair as his brothers, walking over to sit next to me I realized that he had been watching my father and I near the river. His stare didn’t break until I sat next to him.
“Don’t worry your siblings are in that tent over there, I’m Lana”
“ Um, I don’t mean to sound rude but what am I doing here, I can’t remember anything before the soldier attacked us..”
“ Well, all I know is that you got shot, your brother got you here as fast as he could, you are really lucky my mom said that the bullet was dangerously close to your heart. Your siblings didn’t tell us anything else.” He remained staring at the grass, I could tell that he was still confused.
“That would explain the searing pain in my chest” he laughed and then winced.
“Oh I’m Adam by the way, I’m guessing Obadiah was pretty reluctant about revealing who we are right, he didn’t tell you anything about what happened to us did he?”
“ Ya, he seemed to be really private, I mean I completely understand. Its just that I’ve been so curious because I literally know nothing about all of you.”
“Well, I could say the same about you, tell me about yourself” He looked up and met my eyes, I quickly looked away and laughed.
“Hey! Thats not fair I asked first, go ahead” I crossed my arms and waited for him to begin, his expression changed suddenly, his playful smile faded away.
“I might as well start at the very beginning…”