We've been in the city perhaps a little too long. Rachel says she saw someone moving in the shadows outside of the squat we're staying in. Maybe she's paranoid. Being a Runner does that for you.
Maybe she's not.
Steve's shaking. He knows this one's after him. We all do. Natalie was practically begging Shannon and Roland to leave him to the wolves. He's not of any practical use to us. A computer programmer in his old life, he is, as I've said before, in no physical shape to be fighting anything. Thin and clumsy, slow, with no cardiovascular endurance whatsoever. Going straight from home-bound computer geek to Runner - no-one could do that. The long treks, the need to sprint for your lives, the sudden, vicious bursts of violence - they all require more energy, endurance, and psychological fortitude than someone who's never even seen the inside of a gym can muster. And of course, he's the one the Proxy is focused on. He's an Achilles' heel. One we can't afford. But her reasoning is no good. We don't leave one of our own behind.
"What if you were injured, and couldn't keep up? How would she feel if we abandoned you, all alone, to be killed by some psychopath?"
Natalie looked uncomfortable. "Well, what's the alternative?"
Shannon gruffly stated, "We'd carry you. There's always another nightfall coming, and we need to stick together or we'll all be killed. We need to be able to depend on each other having the rest's backs."
"He's useless, and worse than that, he's a liability!"
"He's one of us, Natalie. End of conversation." Roland crossed his arms and looked down at her. She looked to me, trying to find support, but I stood to the side, hands in pockets, in uncomfortable silence, and she wasn't going to get Lianne to back leaving someone to their fate. Furious, she stormed out.
That was an hour ago. Since then, she's just been sitting by one of the boarded-up doorways, sharpening her Ka-Bar machete, glancing through the boards every so often. Rachel's slumped next to her, sound asleep. How she can be anything other awake and terrified is beyond me. Steve's hiding on the stairway, as far away from doors and windows as possible, with Roland just above him, axe in hand. We don't know if he's coming tonight, but if he does, we have to be ready.
He'll try and kill us. We'll try and kill him. Pick your sides.