Runner five

Abel needs me...I am...runner 5. Just a few more kilometers.

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1. The Rules

1) never let anyone know your real name.

2) never run without a second runner.

3) you don't have to be fast, just faster than your second runner

4) carry a pack at all times.

5) never leave anyone behind.

6) don't get attached to anything or anyone.

These are basic rules that I and a lot of the others in able follow, with me anyways. They call me Denim, it's just something someone came up with when I returned from my third run. I apparently bring back more jeans than they can deal with so they give me all the old worn ones and I attempt to sew patches together to make blankets. I be been here in Able for about a two weeks or so. I wasn't a track star before the virus, and I'm not one now, but I've always been able to push my body pretty hard. I'm what the others call a pack mule second. I get taken with other faster runners and I carry the brunt of the loads. If I have to run from a hoard I tend to push it harder than I should.

Jesus is taking me for my seventh run tonight. Everyone calls him Jesus because of his glorious hair. He keeps his beard close to his face though, never let's it grow longer than an inch maybe inch and a half if he can't find batteries for his trimmer.

This will be our second together, and I love to run with him. Watching his hair bounce of his defined shoulders. The light glinting off the sweat of his arms. Every woman in Able envied and worshiped his calves. His only cons for me are the fact that he keeps his pace weather you do or not. He breaks rule five.

We have a lot of rule breakers in my numbers though. They chose a runner for supply runs and that runner chooses some one from their number group. We were 1-10. I was runner six for the first two days I had arrived at Able till...well, there's a reason for rule six. The town was devastated when they heard what had happened to runner five. I was on a run with token, runner two, when we heard her....the screams made me rip out my ear piece and token turned us around to go back to Able 20 minutes earlier than we were supposed to. Up until then she was the best harvester and was about to push baseball cap out of the number four spot. She broke rule number two though, said she didn't have time for another runner to slow her down. My third day in Able, the day after the news I was promoted to number five as it sprinkled. Everyone set out a bucket to collect water to purify.

I was now in the top five, they were the best of the best. Yet the council tossed me in to flounder around till I too was caught in a hoard. I wonder who will listen to me scream for help? Who would put me down like we were all trained to do? The thought makes my stomach tie in knots.

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