I’ve always described my previous nights of sleep as “decent” or “not too bad”. Then again, staying in a car almost 24/7 isn’t as bad as living in the wild. My sleep in the hotel room last night was actually close to comfort. I felt actually pretty relaxed, almost glad to be alive. I then realized that I was alive. I remember Kevin, how he spent the night here. He didn’t kill me. I sat up in bed and didn’t see him on the couch. I started to get out of bed when I heard a door creak, my hand instinctively aiming for my pistol. I waited until I saw Kevin in full sight. “Good morning! Man, I had quite a-“. He saw the gun.
“Hey, don’t have to worry about using that on me. I just woke up. Didn’t do anything to you or planned on it either” He sounded a little worried, but reassured that my conscious would keep him safe. Lucky for him, I still had mine intact.
An hour later, I was fixing up the car. I wanted to be sure I wasn’t missing anything at the motel before I left. Kevin watched me pack up, check around. “May I ask where you’re going?” I glanced at him for a moment, “If you really want to know, you may end up with a bullet in your brain”. He gulped. I smirked.
“Do you plan on going alone? I see a passenger seat open next to the driver…”
“That’s for someone else”
“Maybe it was meant for me”. I could see him attempting to smile, hoping that was a joke to me. “I’ve been pretty nice so far. Sorry, but I have somewhere to go.” I closed the trunk and stepped toward the front seat.
“How many people have you seen since this happened?” He asked me. “Not many” I replied.
“I bet 99 percent of them were in a group. Know why? Because you can’t function alone here! Not anymore”. “I managed to do pretty well. What about you? You found me pretty safely”.
He got upset. Almost desperate. “Because I was on the run that day. If you haven’t noticed, the apocalypse has actually happened. We can’t be on our own here.” I stared at him with some aggression. “I need you. I’m sure you could do just fine but at some point, you’re gonna need me.”
I looked down a bit. Contemplating. He had a point. But I didn’t want to make the risk. I always did well enough on my own, I thought. However that was when the dead weren’t walking. I pondered until he sighed in relief, relaxing his posture. “You haven’t killed me while I slept. I guess you can be trusted”.
He was about to speak, but I intervened, “Be warned. If I see anything out of the ordinary or a smudge of dishonesty, you’re joining the pack of corpses. Got it?” He nodded. I motioned him to get in. When we both entered the car, I saw him put on his seatbelt. He sighed again. Not just in relief, but in joy. He was glad that he could put on a seatbelt again. I started the car. Plenty of gas, food, time.