Chapter 21 – The Last of Us
That night we mourned the lost of our good friend Roger. We prayed for him and for others who have lost their lives recently. The plague has almost wiped the race of all humanity from the surface of the earth but I still believe there was hope and there were still people out there survived, if not many but some. The atmosphere was not the same as before when Roger was still around. We laughed, we fought, we partied and dance all night. Though we have a new member in the family Sarah, the feeling was not as happening as what we have experienced previously. Sarah might replace Roger, but I still thought he did not deserve to die like that. I felt guilty toward his death. I could have avoided it. I could have forced him to stay with Prince. He was still young but death would not wait. There must be a reason for what happened, and that we learned from our past mistakes. Nothing can change the past but the future. It was up to us to shape our own fate.
We have our dinner around 20:08 hour. Sarah sat next to Prince and I next to Claire. Claire noticed I was a little bit moody.
“Travis, it wasn’t your fault. It was his called.”
“I know, but I still feel bad about his death.”
“You need to get over it. We all sad about his death, but we need to go on with our lives now.”
“I promised him that I would help him.”
“You already did, by staying alive. You exterminated the virus. McKenzie would have been proud of you. He thinks of you as his own brother. Viana had already received her punishment.” Claire was right. It saddened me more when she brought the brother thing up. I just lost a good friend and a brother. But I believed he was still with us, in our memories and heart.
I could not sleep so I spent the rest of the night reading a book named “20,000 Leagues Under The Sea” by Jules Verne in the library. The book kept me awake, it was fascinating that Jules Verne wrote the book in 1800’s and wrote about submarine, where submarine was not officially invented yet around that century. I always thought that he was the father of science fiction, and everything he wrote seemed to make sense. People might think I am crazy but all Jules Verne researched about science and geography was almost accurate! And to think that technology was not very sophisticated back then. Someone came in to the library and it was Claire. She wore only blouse and short pants wit her hair unfastened.
“You’re still awake?” I said to her.
“I can’t sleep. I saw the light was on in the library so I thought it must have been you.”
“Yeah, I think I have insomnia. I decided to take some light reading before my eyes can finally be really tired.”
“Can I join you?” she said.
“Thanks. I think I should make some coffees for us. We might stay up late. Be right back.”
“That would be great.” She left the room and went downstairs to make us some coffees. We enjoyed the night reading, chatting, exchanging opinions what we thought about books that we have read, we felt really at home, peaceful and like a happy family.
The next day was filled with cheers and laughs. It was a beautiful day. Sarah and Prince play catch and throw Frisbee in the yard; while Claire and I worked together to remove all the traps I have setup before. It is a safe world now. We planned to bring Sarah and Prince out after we finished with our work; we need to go back to Fort Knox and looked out for any survivors’ left who might still be hiding in the shadows among the buildings in the big city. We were not going to stop, we would keep looking to have our race restored as it was before. Claire invited us to have some drinks and have some rest because we have to go immediately after we took our refreshment.
We went to Fort Knox in separate transport. I drove my truck along with Prince and Sarah. Sarah is now very attached with Prince. She loves the dog very much. Claire drove the Lambo, left by Roger. I thought the car suited with Claire’s characteristic. It just matched her. She led the way and is driving in front of me. Along the way to Fort Knox city, I carefully looked at the landscape around me. Most of the houses and other buildings are left emptied. People flee from the virus but found a dead end. This left me sad and at times angry about it. I want to see people walking down the street, other cars driving the same road as we were, contractors fixing the road, business men in their suits; anything. I want to see all of them again. That’s my wish and promise.
When we arrived in Fort Knox, we checked every buildings, shops, apartments and even alleys. We speak through our radio and enhanced our voice through a loud speaker. We told them to come out and show themselves if they were still out there and that it was okay to came out now as the virus has been exterminated. We received no reply; it was all silent, the type of silent that broke your heart. We tried again, I would never stop until there was someone out there came out and answered my calls. Then Prince started barking from the truck. Sarah tried to make him quiet but he barked even more. There was only one reason for that, Prince can sense someone’s presence if he could hear and saw something. Dogs usually have keen vision and hearing, even in the dark.
From my left side of the building, there came out two elderly couple, followed by five little children, two girls and three boys. How I was glad to see them, then another three from the nearest block. Claire shouted to me telling there are some survivors at her side as well. We were so excited to see them, though they looked weak and ill. I asked them if there any cars nearby that they could use. I wanted them to follow me home. They just nodded and quickly packed some stuff and get the cars. There were many cars at the basement from where the elderly couple lived; it seemed to be an underground car park. Most of the survivors did as what we told them and prepared to go home with us. I have a bigger plan for all of them. I almost break up looking at the scene how they respected and trusted both Claire and I that we sincerely wanted to help them. We went out from the city, all cars lined up behind us just to see the joy on their faces again. It was as if I led them all marching to a new hope and future, away from sadness and misery.