“I’m so sorry to have burdened you all with this situation.” The damsel in distress says. “I don’t….”
“With all due respect, I know this might seem strange to you but it is not your fault. Those men used you as bait. Glad they can’t do it to another woman out there now.” Liz says with eyes that could kill. “Listen. If you want to live out here, you have to become just as ruthless as the ruthless sometimes. Sometimes there are no choices it feels like.”
“I..I..I..understand.” The women mutters. “I’m Sharon.”
“Liz. The women is in shock I still. Let us get her cleaned up, find her some new clothes around here, and then we can train her if she doesn’t have any rifle skills. Can’t jump when you were being pushed down so far into the ground you were eating dirt? Right?” John asks Liz.
“I am not trying to come off insensitive if that’s what you are trying to say. I just think she obviously needs some survival skills if she ended up as bait in the first place. It concerns me there are more women out there being abused just because they never shot a gun.” Liz says. “But let’s get her settled in for now. You are right about that. I don’t mean to overwhelm you, my dear.”
“It’s..it’s…okay. I don’t think anyone could help me not feel overwhelmed. I’m sorry. I have..have shot a gun before though. Not..not completely helpless.” Sharon explains.
“Good to know. You should be easy to teach then.” Liz says in a reassuring tone. “Do yourself a favor though. Don’t care about what others think of you. Don’t care about what they are doing; know you have people’s best interests in mind. I can tell you are the sweet one. Oftentimes turned into a scapegoat or bait for other people’s interests. Don’t let that happen. Fight for yourself when there is nothing left around you.” Liz says with such passion it fills the room with an invisible kind of light. The words seemed to have an instant calming effect upon Sharon as well.
“Those were some of the most inspiring words I’ve ever heard. I don’t even know what I could say back to you but thank you. To all of you. You didn’t have to save me. You could have just let me die. I could tell you knew something was off. I don’t know how I cold ever thank you all for what you have done for me.”
“Just fight with us.” John says. “You are one of us now. Whether you are broken, tangled, or fixed. Each one of us has a story to tell of the horrors out here. I am sure though yours could be the worst. For now, we have your back until you can fight beside us. It is what a decent human being would do for another human being. No thanks is necessary.”
“I think I found the closest thing to home I could have in a world full of chaos.” Sharon admits wholeheartedly.
“I think we all found a place to defend when we found this place.” John says, longing for the past. “It’s like a hidden piece of the past. Thanks to Liz we are lucky enough to share it with you.”
“Well I enjoy the company. I’m sure I won’t like everyone that eventually shows up. But it’s worth it to help those who do appreciate it. Let’s all get some shut eye soon and figure out who’s going to be on night watch tonight. Those men could not return back home and more men of their kind could show up. John and Thomas…I need your help with the bodies. We’ll bury them in the stables so no one can see any freshly dug graves. Who knows who will come around asking questions now either?”
For hours they dig. Taking turns, drinking, recalling past memories when the world was less of an obstacle course. When there were more opportunities for life, love, and happiness.
“Hey Thomas, remember it was literally just the other day John almost shot you?”
“Of course how could I forget? Haha! I can’t blame him though. I might have honestly if I were in his shoes. Glad you had some mercy on my soul Liz.”
“I wouldn’t have shot you Thomas. It was honestly just a way for me to find out if you were alone or if you had some other people hiding behind the clearing. I am a very cautious investigative person Thomas. I try to ask questions then decide what I should do. Not literally jump the gun, haha.” John explains.
“No I understand completely. Glad I can be a part of this as well. Sorry I haven’t said much tonight. Just seeing that woman like that, reminded me of someone close to me I couldn’t save. You gave me hope John. We needed more men like you in this world. We need more men like you in this world more now than ever.”
“Thanks Thomas. Now let’s figure out the night watch schedule and take it easy.” John says with a long sigh afterwards.