Chapter 36~ As the Sun Peeks Through the Trees

“Sol- Solstice?” Koda mutters. I stare at Livy, she smiles and waves. I give her a questioning eyebrow. Remi sighs.

“Yea. This is Solstice, can we hurry up? I don’t want to miss all of dinner.” Jethen stares at Livy too.

“Wait.” I say, way too loudly as I come to a conclusion, “Wait. Wait. Wait. Livy is Solstice?”

“Hey, nice to meet you.” She licks her lips as the boys stare. I put my hand under Koda’s chin and close his mouth.

“Alright Remi, what’s going on?” I ask. “Stop gaping super hero.” I say to Koda when he opens his mouth again.

“Ok, Solstice was a special project made by the dogs, I think they erased her memory and gave her a different personality, which was the whole Livy thing. And we fixed her, so now she’s Solstice, again.”

“Jethen?” Solstice finally notices the blonde haired boy standing in the back, not saying anything. “Oh my gosh! Your alive!”

Tears fill her eyes and she runs over to Jethen and practically tackles him. He just bites his lip and smiles, tears of his own forming. The look on his face is not the Jethen I know, it’s so sweet and kind, and serious. They sort of just hug each other for a while and I smile a little at them. Koda still doesn’t say anything. Solstice pulls away from Jethen as if remembering Koda was there.

“Hey.” She wipes away the tears.

“So you were in my group the whole time, and I didn’t notice you?” He murmurs. She shurgs.

“I guess I’m a pretty good actor.”

“Guess so. I imagined this moment so many times, it wasn’t anything like this…” He shakes his head, “I’m so sorry.”

“About what?” Solstice looks so confused.

“I didn’t recongize you. I’m a horrible brother.” He laughs a little.

“Ugh. You guys are so boring. I’m hungry, can we at least start  to walk?” We walk and I grab Koda’s hand, trying to comfont him somehow, I’m not sure if it helps. We walk slowly, Solstice is practically glued to Jethen’s side and it’s strange how she seems more attached to him than her brother. We get into the dining hall and I smile so huge when I see the rest of the group. All the people I spent months truding through the snow with. Most of them made it, the kids looking older, the adults looking more refreshed. They almost look like humans, not animals looking for a home. They come up and greet me and Koda. Many of the kids telling me every little second that I missed and asking about where I was. It makes me so happy, I remember the mother of the 4 kids that had been shot the same day I had. I look for her children and find them playing with the other kids, all healthy. Koda, Solstice and Jethen talk for a while, catching each other up. I don’t join in. I don’t think that’s my place. Remi comes up to me with a plate of food and hands it to me.

“Jethen’s not supposed to be in here.” She mutters.

“Hmm?” I say through a mouthful of food.

“He’s supposed to be ina cell, I only let him in because Solstice would murder me if I put him in jail.” She says Solstice with a kind of saddness but I don;t question it, I’m only think of how good the food it.

“Well. He’s ok, just keep his brother locked up.” I lick my plate clean and earn a eyebrow of doom from Remi. “Sorry, I’m hungry.”

“Yea. About that-” Remi gets cut off when Koda comes up to me.

“Hey. I want you to show you something.”  And with those words I follow him into a hallway.

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