50 - More Children?

31 9 5

Next Day

Kirt Heinrich

More than two days have passed since the death of Catherine Newcastle. My gladness over reuniting with my classmates was overshadowed by the tragic event. Nobody expected that the anaconda would come very far from the river bank to hunt prey. Poor Catherine might have been swallowed and killed when she went sleepwalking. Probably she would have gone quite far from the others in her sleepwalk and the snake would have constricted her to death there before slithering close to where my classmates had camped: that's why nobody heard screams or noises of resistance. The death brought an air of grief on us. Everyone was sitting sulky staring at the fire. We did eat during the days that we mourned for Catherine Newcastle, but we never had a happy conversation. During those days, the others inquired of my time in the forest alone. I narrated everything from starvation to encountering Amor, who was licking the others and asking for pats from them all the time. I also told them about how those who left split up after Bill Lancaster bludgeoned Zachary White to death, with the help of Michaela Smith and about how when Francisco Adelante contracted trench foot and jaundice, they abandoned him. I learned about how Emily Robinson died. Emily Robinson was in her capsule bed, immobilized because of the sprain. Because of that immobilization, when the bus crashed into many rocks while being carried by the flash flood, Emily's head banged the wall of her capsule tightly in an awkward position until her neck snapped. It was a very painful end. They told me that they pushed her corpse into the water so that they wouldn't contract any infection from it. In movies and horror books they portray deaths as something that brings momentary sadness. That's not true. Death has a strong effect in depressing the loved ones of them who died. We lost hope for those two days. We were worried about who would die next. Every time someone died, we strove to ensure that another person wouldn't die, but our efforts never helped: people died inevitably and the rainforest was killing them.

Tired of being in the rainforest that was killing us, I got up that morning and said, "Guys I know that we have lost many of our friends to the rainforest. I know how tragic the deaths are. But my friends, I want you to know that we could never stop another death if we do not leave this rainforest. The rainforest is not a place we could survive in, we need to get out. We are many now that we've reunited..."

"What do you mean?" Timothy McAllister looked at me. "What do you want us to do?" Timothy had an attitude of hopelessness. He was saddened by frequent recollections of the different deaths that we encountered during our journey, ever since Emily Robinson died.

"See guys, we now know that it is dangerous to walk through the rainforest. What if we journey on the river. The river is less dangerous than the other parts of the rainforest," I suggested.

"You mean we build a raft?" chimed in AnnSophia.

"Exactly. Every river has a point where it pours into the sea. If we build a raft and journey downstream we might go by some Police outpost or village. We can get help. Plus, it's faster to journey by boat because no geographical features could stop us in the river," I said.

"But how do we build a raft?" Alice asked.

"We have wood, a rope, and 2 machetes. We can easily cut wood, use the rope to tie pieces together and build a raft." I took the 2 machetes in my hand.

"Are you sure about using the rope for this?" Timothy asked.

"Yes. It's better to build a raft, Timothy then walking through the jungle on foot," Alice said.

"I am not sure about this idea, Kirt. I don't any more of us to die," Timothy said.

"Timothy man, I know these deaths happened. But we can't let them make us give up our attempt to come out of the jungle. If it is our goal to stop more deaths, we need to get out of here. Only then can we stop another Emily, another Catherine from happening," I said.

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