Dreams and Journeys

We never did find anyone at the base, but we did find a small reservoir of fuel so we could fuel up the Jeep. We spent the night on base and called in the next morning. We told Natalie about the locked up clinic we found in the center of the base.
"When we broke through the doors, it looked like there'd been some kind of fight. The room is scorched and there are bodies in cages. It's the only human signs we've found. I think there was a breakout of PTA here, Natalie," I told her.
"That's impossible, Dahlia. The virus is so strained now, you know as well as I do that the government has every resource to kill the virus even if an infected does overpower someone. How many bodies were there?"
"At least ten. The clinic is small, about the size of my lab, so you can imagine the mess..."
"We'll never be able to figure out what happened without pulling record, and we can't do that without access to someone who worked there. What about the antibiotics? Did you find any medicine?"
"There were a few vials left in a freezer. Enough to get everyone through til the next truck. And there was some insulin, too. I don't know if there's enough for everyone, but we can be careful and ration it. I've got everything on ice in the Jeep, we're ready to move."
"Try to hurry, Dahlia. We're treating everyone as best we can, but you know this is risky. Nobody's allowed in the research building til you guys get back with the medicine. We don't want to risk anything with weakened immune systems. I estimate at least half the subjects will be past the turning point by the time we can get back in there, so every minute counts."
"Yes, ma'am. Understood. We'll be there as soon as we can."

As we drove back, the conversation was awkward to say the least.
"Do you... have nightmares a lot?" John asks.
"No, not really. Just when I'm very stressed." I answer.
"Are you stressed right now?"
"Well, a little."
"Belle's sick."
"Is that it?"
"Is there any way I can help?"
"No, not really. Thanks though."

After waking up in the middle of the night, John had drilled me about the dream. Mostly all he got out of me was that my mother was sick and my brother died of PTA. I didn't let on to my mother's secrets. I didn't give him any dates or names. I still felt a bit invaded by all the questions, and the ride home I was still feeling on edge. But he wouldn't let up, every ten or fifteen minutes he would come up with a new question.

"Did your mom die from her illness?"
"What happened to your brother?"
"He's gone."
"And your aunt?"
"With my brother."
"So they... abandoned you?"
"No! Of course not! God, what's with all these questions, John?"
"Sorry! Sorry, I guess I misunderstood. I didn't mean to offend you, or say anything about your family, I'm sorry."
"Yeah, it's ok. Sorry for yelling..."
"I get it, it's a touchy subject."

It was the longest two days of my life. And as far as I could tell, John didn't get any closer to learning my family's secrets than the moment I woke up screaming.

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