Charlotte Jones is stuck in a world where love is looked at as a disease. She is caught talking about becoming a Shadow with her friends Talia and Madi. Shadows believe in love, which most think is bad. The three friends must now escape without getting caught. If they are caught, they'll be given a choice. A world without love or death?


25. New Jobs and New Recruits

The discussion began. Jessie, as I expected, began with a motivational speech. She explained the basics. We need more guards, more weapons, more people, more ammunition, more food, and more medicine. After her long, ramble of a speech, Jessie started going in to detail.

It’s at that time that I notice how assertive she is. She is a leader at heart. She can say something calmly, yet everyone takes order as if she demanded it. Her words are cleanly stated, as if they were practiced a million times before. It’s a ray of light I see in her personality that reminds me that even though we’re in the Shades, we’re still people.

“I have an announcement now,” Jessie begins, “Today, around noon, we’ll be getting five recruits!”

Everyone hoots and hollers as if this is the greatest news in the world. It kind of is though, because we need people. I hoped there would be more guards than anything. I don’t know if I could handle another attack so suddenly. Defense is what we need.

“Three guys and two girls. Two of the guys, joined by one of the girls, will be an incredible addition to our defense system. They will guard the outside, making sure nobody gets in without a fight!” Jessie states firmly.

“We of course need more than three guards, so some of you will have to switch jobs around here. I’ve decided to appoint three additional guards out of all of us. Xavier, Kyle, and Charlotte.”

My heart stops momentarily when I hear my name being called as a guard. I’ve never even held a gun in my life. Back with the brainwashed mutants, only men were allowed to carry firearms. I couldn’t even imagine myself holding a gun. I have no choice now.

“The other guy coming will help with hunting and trapping. Once again, we’ll need a few more. Kadence, and Michael.” Jessie asserted.

Kadence didn’t seem to pleased. I wonder if she would rather be a guard. Kadence seems like the type of person who likes to be firm and in-charge of things. Still, she doesn’t argue. Kadence just sits there in her own solitude.

“We still need cooks, gatherers, and our medical team obviously. Talia and Becca, you both are still of cooking duty. I noticed Becca had already started to switch, so why not make it official?” Jessie lets a little laugh squeeze out, then continues, “Gatherers and spotters, will be Glenn, and Adelita. I’m sure Glenn can show you the ropes Lita. Claire, you will still be on Medical duty, along with one of the new girls.”

Claire looks happy about that. I can tell Claire is used to the medical field. I also think she is giddy to meet a new potential friend.

“That leaves Zach. You’re on your own for Cleaning.” Jessie finishes.

Zach is very disappointed by this. I think him and Glenn were pretty close. I saw them holding hand a couple times. I wondered if loving the same gender was true love to them. A magical, and pure love, just as rich and beautiful as any other form of love.

I reviewed everyone’s jobs over and over in my head, deciphering why they were positioned that way. The guards, except for me, are all strong and brave. That was obvious. Our trappers  and hunters have endurance and stamina, along with a bit of strength.

Glenn and Adelita were chosen as the spotters and gatherers. This made me think a while. I came to the conclusion that Glenn has already been a spotter, so he could show the ropes to Adelita, who is much more fit for the job. She is in good shape, still young enough to be quick. She is very intelligent too. Adelita also knows what’s good to eat and what isn’t from being the former chef.

For the cooks, I think Talia and Becca were put in that position because quite frankly, they’re the only ones who can cook, and are good at it as well.

For medical, Claire is clearly the best choice. She is very familiar with everything medical, and does her best to make everyone comfortable. So that just leaves cleaning, which Zach got stuck with. I hate to think so, but I believe it’s probably because Zach really has no other outstanding talents.

I still wondered why I was put as a guard. I’ve showed no strength so far. I mean, I’m not weak, but I’m not strong either. I’ve never even touched a gun. Except when I grabbed on and started firing it with rage at the man who hurt Kyle. The blood that sprawled out across the floor. The bangs of the gun, still ringing in my ear like a constant reminder of what I had done. I just don’t think I will be strong enough to kill someone again.

Then I realized, Madi never was told a position. Obviously because she is still unable to walk, but Claire said Madi is doing better and should be back on her feet in a week. Maybe sooner. I decided to go talk to Jessie about it. I raised my hand, a childish habit I intended to break. Jessie let out a chuckle, as did everybody else, including myself.

“What’s Madi going to do?” I asked, trying to sound confident.

“Madi? She can’t even walk yet.” Jessie replied stating the obvious.

“Yeah, but Claire said she’d be back on her feet in about a week. So, what’s she gonna do in a week?” I was bolder this time, extending my confidence.

“Just because she can walk, doesn’t mean she will be strong enough to work,” Jessie continued, “I’m sorry, but she doesn’t have a working position yet, and that’s the way it’s going to be.”

“But,” I was cut off unexpectedly.

“Char, it’s fine.” Madi used my nickname. It’s very rare to hear my nickname, so I was confused momentarily. After madi said it’s fine, I just let it go. I figured it’s not really the wisest decision to argue with Jessie.

The discussion went on, and everyone listened contently. Jessie brought up the conversation about making new plans. Everyone pitched in on ideas for new plans. Kyle spoke up, and he had an idea. I could tell right away, that that idea was going to established, and people were going to be killed.

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