Epilogue

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Everybody has to make choices.  And sometimes those choices cause you to lose important things. 

The day I chose to pass my ADCCG fitness exam, I made a choice.  I knew that being taken would result in my life drastically changing.  I knew that I would be leaving my family and friends behind. 

I had to go though. My life has changed, but I've learned so much! Sure, I never really found out exactly why the ADCCG exists, but maybe one day I will.

But I did get to meet my big brother, who I otherwise never would have met. I became friends with Aria, and learned so much from her. She taught me how we hold ourselves higher than others, and choose not to see some people. I met Tristan, who has changed my life for good.

Leaving and staying. Choices I've had to make. There are days when I regret leaving Winnipeg. I have days when I think that maybe we shouldn't have stayed here in Johnston.

I miss the people I left behind, but I never would have me the amazing 'family' I have here, had I stayed.

And since that day three weeks ago, when Tristan asked me to be his wife, I've known that I made the right choices.

I remember that day as well as I remember the same day ten years earlier. The day we came to Johnston.

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After deciding to stay, Mrs Calder gave me a hug.  "Welcome to Johnston," she said.

I smiled.  "Thank you."

Mrs Calder then suggested to the man I assumed to be Mr Calder that we all go over to their house and have some bannock with jam and tea. 

The six of us, and the six village council members sat down in the Calder's kitchen.  Mrs Calder set plates of bannock in front of us.  Even though she had already fed me, I ate as quickly as the others. 

I remember Kendra apologizing for our awful manners.  "We haven't had much food lately," she said.

They set out what was going to happen.  There weren't any extra places for us to call our own, so for the first year Kendra and I stayed with the Calder's, Tristan and Mitch stayed with an older man who lives on his own, and Jay and Greyson stayed with Elaina and her dad. 

They told us we would have to build our own places, but promised that there would be lots of help from everyone else, provided that we pull our weight in the community.

"We don't have electricity," they told us.  "We cook on wood stoves, do our laundry by hand, keep ice in metal iceboxes to keep our food cold.  Electricity would make it easier to find us."

It was all really overwhelming back then.  Now it just seems normal.

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The first year took a lot of adjusting. But eventually we all had a place to live. Kendra and Mitch moved into one of the new little houses together. Greyson and I moved into one, and Jay and Tristan were left with the other.

Nowadays we all have our own jobs. Kendra works with a lady named Sarah as the village doctors. Greyson, Jay and Mitch help with construction and other miscellaneous jobs like that. Tristan works in the field, helping with the vegetables we grow. And I help look after the kids during the day.

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Everyone has to make tough choices.  Some people look back with regrets.  But I am happy with the choices I've made.

---END---

AH it's over!!  I'll just go sit in a corner and be slightly overwhelmed for a while.  See you in a the upcoming authors note!

Jen <3

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