Funeral

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The morning is quiet. We stand outside with the morning breeze blowing past us. My long hair tickles my face, making me scrunch my nose. I stand a few feet away from the hand-dug grave. Kim lies wrapped in a sheet in the middle of the grave. We mourn the loss of her.

Chris, who went out to pick flowers, returns and frowns at the body that was once his sister. Jose and a few others bury her with dirt. No one says a word.

Anne stands beside me, her cries loud and depressing. Her best friend is dead. After so long carrying her along with us, hoping for her to awaken, it's a huge disappointment to know after all of that she didn't make it. She never woke up. Not until she turned.

Chris puts down the flowers when they finish burying her. He stands stiff and looks down at his hands, which are still stained with blood. I grab them and pull him close.

He immediately starts to sob into my shoulder. He can't keep his sorrow in any longer. His body shakes with sobs. I can feel his tears leaking on to my shoulder. I hold him tight, wishing I could help make him feel better. But there's no way to help.

Everyone begins to depart, somberly walking back into the house.

I stay outside with Anne and Chris, who spend more time to mourn Kim. Chris lets go and takes in a deep breath. He nods to me, a silent thank you. I nod back, then walk back to the house where it all happened.

Tessa and Mia scrub the floor, cleaning up as much as the blood as they can. The white rags quickly became stained with red. I offer to help them but they see my pained posture and order me to sit down. I do as they say, not objecting.

Naoto comes over to me and sits down beside me. Bags are visible under his eyes. Progressively over the past few days he's been looking worse and more worn down. I begin to feel concern for him. Mia also notices his exhaustion. She looks up at him and frowns, asking if he's okay. He gives her a smile and a nod, but as soon as she goes back to cleaning he goes back to frowning.

"What's wrong?" I whisper.

"I'm tired," he says. "We've been running for a few months now. Everyone around us is dying. We've found this great house up in the mountains but even if we feel safer here, we're not. Nowhere in this world is safe anymore."

He's right. Even here, up where we feel the safest we've felt, we're not safe. The infected are everywhere. Kim, a young woman who's been protected by everyone around her, somehow was still infected. Somehow.

Naoto stands up and walks into the kitchen, leaving me alone in the living room. It doesn't stay empty for long. Kat walks in and gives me a light smile. I smile back, watching her as she crossed to the fireplace.

"What a mess," she whispers to herself. She turns to me her eyes full of pain and sorrow. "So many deaths."

"Too many."

"I'm sorry you had to see her like that. I can't imagine what that would be like."

"I feel worse for Chris," I say. "It's his sister."

"He seems strong," she says with a stretch. When she stretches, her shirt goes up slightly. When I see the wound on her stomach I want to cry.

Kat knows I saw it. She pulls her shirt down quickly and begins to walk away.

"Wait!" I call after her. I stand up too fast, making my head spin and my vision go dark. I cling onto the couch and wait for my vision to come back. Kat hurries up the stairs, not looking back at me. I follow her up.

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