When we wake up we start walking again. The sky is overcast and the air cold. All the trees have lost their leaves and they crunch beneath our feet. My feet are swollen and scabby. My hands are numb from the cold. My long ginger hair is a tangled mess. When I first came I tried keeping it in a neat braid but now I leave it be. My light brown eyes are watery and tried, making things blurry. But I continue to trudge on. As we walk I can hear the children’s whines and complains. Soon I too wish to complain. But I have no one to complain to. So I stumble in silence. Suddenly we stop. We hear a voice call, our leader’s voice, telling us to halt. I push my way to the front to see what is happening. I remember someone once told me that our leader’s name was Koda. No one knew what it meant or why it was given to him but that was his name all the same. He has brown hair that was short and swept to the side He is extremely tan and his brown eyes look like chocolate. I’ve never tried talking to him. He seems so above my thoughts and yet… he looks the same age as me, therefore he can’t have much more wisdom can he? I watch as he holds up his hands and looks around as if listening. I listen too, just in case I’ll be able to hear something he doesn’t. All of a sudden he calls out.
“Who’s there?” His voice is strong but uneasy. Does he sense something I don’t? “We won’t hurt you.”
“Unless your’re apart of the government.” I mutter. A girl steps out of the bushes. She has long, brown hair that falls past her waist, some of it is woven into small braids. Her eyes are so blue it looks like I’m looking into a cloudless sky, she has long lashes that are black. She’s skinny, like the rest of us but she make it looks good. Koda stares at her.
“Who are you?” He whispers. She suddenly burst into tears.
“I’m sorry, I was just running from government when I saw you guys last night. I’ve been following you ever since. Please don’t hurt me!” She covers her eyes with her hands and wipes them.
“Don’t worry. We’re running too, you can come with us.” Koda picks up her hands and looks into her eyes. His words are soothing and his hand gentle. She nods and he helps her get up.
“Thank you so much!” She smiles with straight white teeth. “How can I repay you?”
“No need. I will give you an escort if you have any questions.” I wonder who he will assign to this girl. I guess he would call out one of the older women but he surprises me, “Poppy can you come here?” I duck my head through the crowd and walk towards him and the girl.
“Yes sir.” I nod.
“You can call me Koda.” He smiles slightly, at what I’m not sure.
“Yes sir.” He smiles a little bigger and then I realize that I called him sir again. I smile a little at that with him.
“Take care of her. And find her food if you can.” I nod to the girl and she starts to follow but Koda stops her. “What’s your name?”
“Livy, sir.” She adds with a smile.
“Welcome to our company Livy.” I lead Livy back to our group, we walk in the front and I can hear the whispers from behind. Sure a new refuge added to our group but when they do come it’s rare. And every person has a story, they probably just want to find out hers.