We stood there together, finally. Peter’s arms held me close to him. The warmth of Peter’s body brought me so much relief. It has been almost a month since I’ve seen him.I shook images of him being dragged off by the raiders out of my head. I rested my chin on his shoulder, breathing him in.
Tall fences surround us. The darkness of the night almost makes the barriers seem like they’d keep us safe. Then I remembered we are inside with the dangers. We are in their world.
“I can’t believe you found me,” he said. “I wish you hadn’t come inside.”
“How else could I find you?”
“I know.” His arms tighten around me.
“We’ll get out together.” I whispered in his neck.
Something hard presses into the back of my head. A gun.
“Both you put your arms high and slowly turn the hell around!”
My hands tense.
“No. Don’t fight it. Do what they say. Every word.” Peter said with a hushed voice.
Fighting would be the wrong choice. I slowly bring my arms over my head as I turn to face the bandit with the gun.
Peter and I stood side by side. I’m afraid that neither of us will live much longer. Maybe our story will end soon. Eventually everything comes to an end. If anything at all, that point should be clear. Life isn’t forever. Nothing is. Everything is held up with string and sticks.
Peter and I looked right him. A man of average height. His body was in thick padded armor and his head hidden under a large black helmet. Ammunition and grenades hung off his vest and belt. “What are you doing in the supplies dump?”
We said nothing.
“I asked you both a question!”
“We were hungry,” Peter said. His voice came out completely even.
I nodded my head.
“Thieves.” The armed man shook his head. “Two meals a day aren’t enough for you?” He pointed the gun right at me, then quickly pulled the trigger. The sound of the shot tore at my ears. The bullet came right at me, missing my shoulder by half an inch.
“Turn around and hands behind you back,” he said smiling.
We did as he said. One by one our arms were bound. He then hooked our chains on a bar with blades forged to it. The raider led us down into a dark alley. Armed men and woman lined the rooftops. Peter and walked slowly, careful to not make anyone angry.
“Here you go, the lovebird sweet,” The pilferer said as he unlocked a cell door. His stubbled face clenched into a self-pleased grin. He untethered our chains from the battle stick and pushed us into the cell. He locked our cell door and walked away without another glance. Our hands were still bound.
Peter leaned his arm into mine. “At least we are together now. We will figure this out.”