The morning had finally shown itself and I needed to head out as soon as possible to get back to grandpa. It didn’t take me long to pack up before I needed to go. The weather was warm with a slight breeze. Before the impact I heard it got super hot all year long, so I was thankful it wasn’t like that anymore. The ride back felt like it was taking longer now. Maybe it was because I didn’t want to leave the town. I wanted to solve what the world government had done more than anything but I had to wait and just gather ant piece of information i could get my hands on.
I finally pulled up to the yard as mum is hanging laundry outside and I could see a sigh of relief as to say i’m glad you’re home. It was nice to see mum in good moods I just wish she was happier. But my thoughts weren’t on her anymore the minute I saw dad. “did you get it?” he asked, “of course!” I replied and I gave him the medicine and followed him into the house. “Alice!” grandpa said with relief “I’m here grandpa, I got what you need.” I replied. Dad gave him the medicine and we let him rest. after he fell asleep I saw a little concern in dads eyes and asked him what was wrong and he says grandpa may not be restored to his normal self that he may just be weak from now on and may never truly heal due to his age.
This broke my heart, I never wanted anything to happen to any of my family and I knew we can’t stop old age but I needed him to get better. i wanted to show him that the world will somehow get restored and that we can go back home to Ireland where we belong. This really made me think about who I was and where my heritage comes from. I was a strong-willed Irish woman and I needed to fight for us and I was planning on it. I needed to be strong and ask my father what he knew about the day of the impact and what he knew and I planned on asking him tonight because I didn’t need to hold back anymore.
We were sitting at dinner and things seemed a little tense and I think they knew what was coming to mum kept her mouth shut and tended to grandpa, I looked at dad and took a deep breathe and just let it out.
“what happened the day of the impact and what do you know?” I asked looking sternly at dad, he sat there very quiet for a moment trying to decide how to answer.
“Alice that day was such a scary day for all of us. We all thought it was the end of the world and it damn near was. I had seen newspaper clippings of a possible disaster heading our way and I wanted to make sure we had somewhere safe to go if it did happen and sure enough months after I had did some planning. I saw this huge fireball coming from a distance and I knew I had only about 30 minutes to spare before it was too late. I found the newspaper clippings in your room and I knew you were going to want answers soon and I just wanted you to focus on staying alive, we’re running out resources and I’ve thought about moving our family somewhere else to find better hope for food and better living.” he finally said and stayed quiet so I could gather my own thoughts.
“dad I want to go to the government headquarters in Arizona to see what I can find there, I’ve been doing alot of research and some people did take heed to the warnings that were out there like you did and I want to know where they went. I heard that there was a new planet that was discovered shortly before the impact and I want to go.” I replied.
“no! you can’t go, you’re the only heir to this little family and we couldn’t imagine anything happening to you.” mum finally let out.
“mum seriously we need answers and if we don’t search, then we’re just gonna be stuck in this life for the rest of our days and honestly I would like to go back to Ireland and I can’t do this without a little family support.” I said. Dad looked on in agreement
“we need to do what is best and let her seek the answers because we are only surviving and we can’t do it for too much longer” he said to her.
It was decided and I think we decided on 2 things that night. I wasn’t going alone. We were leaving Dallas in a week and that meant I had a week to find Jack to tell him goodbye. I was sad as I went to bed that night. I really wanted to go and see if I could find him, but it was too risky but what did it matter, we were risking everything we have here to go to another place to find answers and because food was very skim here.
It was the next day and I knew I needed to break it to my folks about Jack and that I needed to see him before we leave.
At lunch is when I decided I would do just that.“so there’s someone I need to go say goodbye to before we leave and it would require me to take a one more day trip to town before we leave.” I finally spilled and stayed quiet, “well who is it Alice?” mum asked.
“his name is Jack and he’s actually a royal from a place called England.” I replied and mum and dad just stared in shock “what is it?” I asked.
“that boy, he was stolen from his parents.” mum said.
“then how does he know hes royal?” I asked “his aunt took him and refused to give him back and the country was already going down hill that they just decided to let him stay with her for his own safety.” mum replied and then it all made sense to me why he seemed all alone.
“so I’m going back there to see him before we leave. He helped me get grandpas medicine and if it wasn’t for him i would have come back empty handed.” I said
“I’ll pack you and overnight meal to take with you but you must please be careful.” mum begged.
So it was also decided that I would be leaving here shortly to go find Jack and tell him what I knew about him.
I raced as fast as my bike could get me, It didn’t take me long to arrive into the same old empty town. I was kind of happy that we were leaving to find the answers that I was looking for. I looked around all the places I could find jack and I knew he wouldn’t come out til I went to my usual spot. I parked my bike and decided I would go in and make some tea while I waited. Before the tea was even finished steeping, I heard two taps on the door and I flew to the door and looked out the peephole. I opened the door and there was those 2 blue eyes and a grin I liked. “I’m so glad you’re here!” I let out.
“well i’m glad you’re here too but it’s early, I didn’t expect you back for a while, is everything okay?” he asked
“well I told my parents about you and we’ve all decided we’re going to Arizona to the world headquarters to find answers, and I was wondering if you wanted to come with me?” I asked last minute.
He pondered his answer for a minute as I waited. “well I don’t really have much holding me back here, my aunt had left long ago and I don’t know if i’ll ever find my family again so sure” he replied and before I could even stop myself I went to hug him in excitement. I’ve never felt that emotion before and it scared me for a minute so I backed away. “i’m sorry, I don’t know what came over me, I seem to like you alot and I’m feeling all these new emotions and I hope it doesn’t freak you out.” I blurted out. He took my hand and started leading me out the door “where are we going?” I asked “you’ll see, trust me.” he said. We got onto my little motor bike and he took me all the way to the ball tower which was all the way across town and we started to make our way up the long haul of stairs and before we knew it, we were on the top of the world it seemed “it’s so beautiful!” I exclaimed in awe. I had never seen the city from so high up, I could almost see my house and other parts of the city that had been destroyed. The sun was setting now and I could feel him grabbing my hand. “i used to come up here alone to just enjoy the sunset and I’m really glad I got to enjoy it with you.” he said and I got nervous because I knew it was about to happen, I had only seen my parents do it and I never imagined it would be my turn so I just went with my instinct and let him lead the way. The kiss was the most amazing feeling in life, it brings you back and keeps you going. I felt like I was truly living for the first time that I could feel a little tear leave my eye but I was able to hide it out of embarrassment. “i’m really glad you decided to come, but won’t your crew miss you?” I asked “not really, they’ll just think I went missing and send a small crew out to look for me but by end of night they’ll give up.” he said.
The sun was starting to set, so we decided it was time to leave and rest for the night since we were going back to my house tomorrow. I shared my dinner with Jack but he had to leave me one last time so that they wouldn’t come looking for him and we got found out. He was about to leave and I was sad but I just tried to act normal as possible because I knew he was coming with me and I wouldn’t have to be without him. He kissed my forehead and bid me a safe night.
It stormed again that night and I went ahead and lit a small candle so I could read one of the books before I went to sleep. I chose a small book of love poems that was near by and read as many as I could before I fell asleep, I dreamt of him and us all going back to Ireland together, would he want to go that far? I asked within my dream. The world still has endless possibilities and I wouldn’t know until I asked. Before I knew it I had ruined the book that now had candle wax all over it, I guess I was lucky the house didn’t catch on fire. That would have really given me away and then Jack would have had to fight to come with me.
I felt the sun hitting my face as it assumed it was time to wake up and I was more than ready to start the day but I wondered how long it would take Jack to get here before we could escape back to my house. I decided to eat a snack as I waited for him. Seconds turned to minutes and minutes turned into hours, the day was passing and he wasn’t here. I’m getting worried now.
It was now or never I thought and I knew I may have to leave without him, the day was passing us by and I didn’t know what else to do. I started to pack up my things and head out before I knew it there was a crash through the door and I thought surely it was an intruder but it was Jack and he was breathless as if someone were chasing after him. “what’s wrong?” I asked him waiting for him to catch his breath. “sorry it took so long, they put me in quarantine for the night because they feared something was going on” he replied “are they after you?” I asked “no I don’t think so but we need to go now or they will start looking.” he said and with that we were out the door and on the motor bike in no time at all. I was happy he was coming with me and I feared they would find him but they wouldn’t be searching for long as we will be on our way to Arizona in just a few days.
We finally made it back to the house and I see mum in tears and I quickly jumped off the bike to find out what was wrong. “what’s going on?” I ask her “it’s your grandpa, Alice. Your father says he doesn’t have long left. He fears the rest of the night.” she replied and without a second thought I went straight to grandpa without even worrying where Jack was but he followed which ws nice since I knew he kept me calm. “father, mum told me what happened. Is it true?” I asked him, “it is true my dear, go and sit with him.” he said.
I went to his side and he looked to weak and frail. “grandpa?” I said as I could hear my voice get shaky he muffled out a low growl to show he was aware of my presence. I was heart broken, I knew he won’t be going to Arizona with us. He took my hand in one small movement and without any other thought, his hand dropped and I knew then he had said goodbye. I cried but I promised I would be strong. My father welcomed Jack given the moment and they both started to dig a hole in the ground as mum and I prepared him for his new journey. It was a sad day but we knew we had to push forward.
That night I let Jack sleep in my room on the extra sleeping bag on the floor since I wanted to talk to him more in private and since I was of age my parents didn’t fight it. “what do you think we’ll find out there?” I asked “i don’t know but I hope it’ll answer your questions.” he replied. “if they are on another planet, if only you and I could go, would you go with me?” I asked. “now that’s a silly question, of course I would go with you.” he said. We bid each other good night and slept really hard that night, dreamt about grandpa finally getting to see grandma for the first time in ages. I’m sure he’s in a better place.
I woke up and Jack was gone, I quickly changed clothes and headed downstairs and I heard something I had never heard before and that was the sound of my mum laughing. What could she possibly be laughing about, I entered the kitchen and there was Jack and my mum making bread and she was teaching him like she had taught.
I went ahead and decided to find out what dad was up to and I saw that he was packing things up. “when do you think we’re leaving?” I decided to ask him “we leave tomorrow, better start packing what you absolutely need to take with you.” he said and with that I went ahead and went back to my room and got only what I needed and a few clothing items. Clothes were always easy to come by since alot was left behind by other people. We were gonna use the van that dad had saved for times like this so that we could get someone much faster. We decided to let the horses run free and pick what vegetables were left.
After the passing of grandpa I think all of us knew it was time to go. We ate our last meal in this house and i was thankful. I wondered how I would sleep that night. Jack was busy helping mum and dad and I think having him around helped her see that humanity is still alive and that we can grow if we just try. I wonder what we would find out there, I am a little scared if we will see thing we won’t like but that would make us stronger. If it did take me flying up into space to find our government then I would do it because that is what I needed to do.
Dad had done the research on low long of a drive it would take us to get to headquarters and he estimated about 15 hours, I knew that this trip would be the longest trip I had ever taken. Would we run into any robbers on the way? would we run into any car issues? what if we run out of supplies before we got there? Dad was pretty good at finding his way so I knew we wouldn’t get lost but what if we did? I hope we make it there without a problem. I tossed and turned so much that night and I knew I would feel like crud because of it. I think I’m scared to leave home because this is all i’ve ever known but we need to find answers and we won’t find them sitting around here.
The next day came without a hitch. Dad said we would leave at sunset since driving during the day seemed a little dangerous. I thought that was a little crazy because I figured if we had daylight it would be easier to see our surrounding. I decided to take a few books to read along the way since I would have nothing else better to do. Mum made plenty of snacks and food for us all to eat since we wouldn’t have much time to really cook anything. I decided I would nap today since we were traveling at night and apparently all of us decided that was the plan, I have never seen my parents sleep during the day.
It was nice to have Jack here because it gave me someone my own age to talk to besides my parents, although it wasn’t too bad to talk to them I just don’t have to talk to my diary anymore because I have loads of them and unfortunately I now have to leave them behind. Which was sad to me because it was like I was leaving a part of me behind and I suppose I was since I am now an adult and I need to leave some things regarding my childhood behind. I learned as much as I could but it was time to move forward and do something that could very well save us all. I just hope that I am strong enough for all of it.
We all woke up just before sunset and packed the car. It was a bittersweet moment but it was almost time to go. We all gathered in the car and we were off without any issues. I noticed the roads were very rough as if the tires were going to blow but dad ensured us the tired were still very safe. The night journey seemed to last what seemed like forever. Most of the signs on the highway roads were still intact so finding our way wasn’t as bad as we all had hoped and we were in Arizona by daybreak. It was just midday before we decided to stop at a park and sleep for the rest of the afternoon. We stopped several times for bathroom breaks because holding it was not an option and as much as I liked the speed of traveling somewhere faster, it was not something I would do again just because it got cramped quickly.
I decided I would make a hammock between 2 trees by the lake as my place to sleep. Jack was near by and seemed to be enjoying the sights. I won’t lie it was very beautiful here, despite that it was empty of human life and it had some damaged buildings in the background. I slept with ease but it didn’t last long because the sun was not playing nice by hitting my in the face so I decided I would get up since everyone else was still asleep.
I went for a walk on what seemed to be an old trail that had slightly grown over. The trees were tall and it was a beautiful forest here. I stopped in my tracks when I heard a tree branch break behind me, I quickly turned around and there he was with that grin on his face “you really want to get killed don’t you?” I asked half jokingly “well if it’s by you then sure.” he replied. “i wish I had more time alone with you but it’s difficult with your folks always here.” he said, “i know, they worry about me is all.” I replied. We decided to walk a little bit longer as he took my hand, which left my heart tingling. I’ve never felt this way before but I went with the flow. Before I knew it we had to turn around and head back. He stopped me suddenly and looked me dead in the eyes “i promise I’ll never leave you.” he said and gave me a quick kiss. I was already speechless but I just followed him back to camp so we didn’t get found out and I would have had to explain myself.
The night was approaching again and we needed to find headquarters soon. I asked dad how much longer it would possibly take and he said about 6 hours, so at least it wasn’t as long as the previous trip. We finally made it to an area with a few tall buildings but not like the ones in Dallas. This definitely looked like some kind of government office. Dad drove slowly just in case there were people with weapons there because he didn’t want anything to happen to us. It was still dark outside and the sun wouldn’t be up for another few hours so we decided to rest up in the car and we would explore once the sun was up and we had light to look around,
I was eager to know what was on the inside of that building more than anyone in that car and I was going to find my answers and I was more frightened as to what those answers may be. The question was, am I ready for it? I guess this was my time for the moment of truth in my life. Was I strong enough to handle all that happening? I don’t think I had much of a choice and there was no turning back so it was now or never. It was good to rest though because it would help my mind prepare for what would happen next. The sun was up and I could hear my dad snoring so I knew we had a little bit more time before we got out but I think I will sneak out to take a look before they were ready. But would it be safe? I think i’m going anyways. I need to know.