Sometimes a shotgun speaks louder than words...

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Joe automatically launches into full army mode, grabs our survival packs and starts stuffing food into the pockets. I stand there barely functioning and unmoving. Taking my hand, Will drags me back into the house, slams the door behind us and pulls the heavy bolts across, securing it.

The cogs begin to slowly turn in my clouded mind as I mumble, "I don't understand. Why do we need to leave? Surely we can reason with them?"

Joe calls out from the back of the house as he continues to prepare the weapons, "The council knows that Tommy has been unwell for a while, kid. When they examined him, they thought it was the flu or something because there were no bites. But now that they know he is Infected, they will say we have been keeping him hidden, which is against the rules. They will kill him in the streets, and they will push us out a warning to the rest of the folk. We won't have no weapons, no food, nothing... If we leave now, at least we stand a chance."

With utter dismay, I throw my arms up in the air. "But we didn't know either Joe! How can they do that? And how do they even know that he's Infected?"

Stopping in his tracks, he stares at me earnestly. "It doesn't matter how they know. It's already done. Maybe a friend of Tommy's knew and told someone...who knows! But what I do know is that even if we kill Tommy this second, it still won't be enough. Trust me, I know these people, and I know what they do to people like me...people like us."

He continues to glare at me, waiting for a response. Pointing straight at Will he says, "I need you to tie up Tommy..."

Will stands there wide eyed. "You want me to tie him up?"

Joe shouts impatiently as he rushes into the bedroom, "There's rope out back. Grab a cloth to tie over his mouth!"

Will places his hand firmly on my shoulder. "You heard him, time to go Ally!"

I wipe away the salty dampness from my cheeks with the back of my hand, as an overwhelming feeling of defiance and anger starts to spread through me. Gritting my teeth I clench my fists, digging my nails into the palms of my hands. "I won't let them touch him..."

Will grins at me. "That's my girl!"

I dash forward, grab one of the survival packs and sling it over my shoulders. Will runs out back and returns with an armful of rope and a bandana hanging out of his pocket. Without a second thought, he goes straight into Tommy's bedroom and freezes at the sight of him. I nod knowingly and pull back the covers tangled around Tommy's legs. His pyjamas bottoms are still wet from his bath.

Will pulls at his legs and wraps the first rope around his ankles, pulling them tight. I hold Tommy's tiny wrists together in my hands as Will secures the final knots around his arms. Will hesitates with the bandana and briefly looks over his shoulder at me.

Forcing a smile, I take it from his grasps and tie it around Tommy's face. Tommy blinks in response with fearful eyes, as I lean over and kiss his forehead. "Everything is going to be okay."

Will gently pulls me out of the way and places his hands underneath Tommy's arms. In one swift motion, he picks him up and slings him over his shoulder.

As he trudges towards the back door he shouts, "You owe me big time, Ally... I swear to god if he bites me, I'm gonna bite your ass too!"

I can't help but smirk at the thought of it. The town's folk finally arrive outside the front of the cabin and immediately begin to slam their fists on the front door, bellowing for us to come out. At the front of the crowd is the father of one of Tommy's closest friends.

Joe opens his mouth to speak as his handmade window smashes, showering him in glass. I dash forward and flip the dining table in response, quickly pushing it towards the broken window. Joe grabs a shotgun off the wall and cocks it with one hand.

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