(475 words) - I'm rifling through my shrinking sac of supplies, listening to the fire pop and crackle behind me. Then I hear it. A crackle, sure, but not of the ember variety... someone is behind me.
(470 words) Ellie sits still, engulfed in blackness. She breathes in slowly through her nose and exhales heavily through her lips, until she becomes rather weightless. She's ready.
I knew I'd never see my family if I were captured; we wouldn't be reunited at the school. I had to get down from this tree safely and keep moving. Mitch had sacrificed himself so I could live, so I had to live. It was the only thing left I could do for him.
It has been eight years since the interregnum began.