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Six.

Wren.

Wren woke to the sound of raindrops beating against the thin glass window panes. She blinked a few times, wondering where she was and how she got there. Then she remembered. Everything that had happened settled in her mind like an unwelcome house guest. After searching the rest of the village for anyone who might have survived ² they found no one ² exhausted, they returned to the house that they had hid in before; neither of them had the heart or the energy to return to their own homes. She was lying on the sofa, her head resting on Hunter·s chest ² she could feel every breath he took and every beat of his heart/ His arm was wrapped loosely around her waist, his hand resting on her hip. Alex was curled up on the seat across from them, wrapped in the quilt she·d found late last night. Hunter cleared his throat quietly, ´Morning.µ ´You look like crap.µ She replied, noticing the pale skin on his face and the redness around his eyes. ´Charming.µ ´Sleep well?µ ´Apart from the dead arm? Yeah« After a while.µ Wren blushed and sat up properly, allowing him to move into a more comfortable position. ´Well, I did say you could sleep on the floor.µ She laughed. ´And miss a chance to sleep with you? Not a chance.µ He flashed a mischievous grin. She grabbed a cushion and began hitting him with it. ´Stop, I surrender.µ He said. ´Anyway, if you don·t quiet down, you·ll wake him up.µ ´Could you keep an eye on him for a bit? I need to go and clear my head.µ ´Can·t you wait until later? Then we could all go.µ ´I don·t need you to protect me« I just need to think some things through.µ ´Fine. I·ll see you in a bit then.µ Wren got up, checked on Alex and then walked out of the front door, ignoring the worried look in Hunter·s eyes ² he wanted to stay with her, just in case. She crossed the road, trying to avoid the unwavering stares of the countless corpses the decorated the streets, then she walked up the garden path to her house. Wren had needed to do this alone; she needed to absorb as much of this as possible. The faces, the sights, the smells and sounds. She needed to remember them all. Everything that was everything that is everything that could have been. That was her way to cope, she needed to know what, how, and why it happened. The oak door was shut; a blood symbol smeared on the varnished wood. It was a rather simple design, just a circle with a cross through it. But it wasn·t the crimson character that caught her attention, nor the slightly iron smell that emanated from the blood, it was the curved blooded dagger that was firmly stuck in the centre circle, right where the two lines of the cross met. Wren recognized it as the one the wolf-masked-man had held. She pulled it out, not without some difficulty and held in her hands. The blade still had a little blood on it ² She couldn·t even begin to imagine who it belonged to. She opened the door. Papers were strewn across the floor, furniture had been upturned and upholstery slashed. The place was a mess. This isn·t a coincidence« she thought. None of the other houses were destroyed inside-else she·d have been found. So why was it only hers? Wren crossed the carnage of the living room and walked through the open door to her bedroom. At first glance, it seemed as if nothing had been touched, but then she noticed

the nearly overlooking change; a photo. It was one of her and herself taken on her sixteenth birthday. The picture had previously been kept on her dresser, but now, it was lying on the bed, the broken frame in the bin and it was ripped down the middle. The only half that remained was the part with Hunter in it. Wren grabbed a bag, filling it with clothes and essentials. Then, taking one last look at the room, she closed the door behind her as a strange sense of finality came over her ² this was most likely the last time she·d ever be there again. From her brother·s bedroom, which, this time was completely untouched, she took some clothes and a few other things for Alex. Then, she walked into her dead parent·s bedroom, the door nearly off its hinges, with a kitchen knife embedded into the solid wood. The bedroom was almost as much as a wreck as the kitchen was. He must have been looking for something« but what«? A white package caught her eye; the corner of it was just slightly visible from underneath the chest of drawers. She picked it up; ¶Frank Wylde· was written in a messy, but still legible scrawl. She added it to her bag, deciding that she·d have a chance to look at it later. She also took the money and laptop that was in her dad·s drawer, and the photo of the family that had been taken only a few months ago. Wren took one last look around, and then left. There·s no time like the present. She thought as she moved the bag into a more comfortable position on her back and walked down the street into the graveyard. ´I·ll be back someday,µ she promised, rearranging the roses that lay on her mother·s grave. ´Where did you go?µ Hunter asked, looking up from the sandwich that he was trying to convince Alex to eat. ´I went to pick some stuff up; were leaving soon.µ ´I don·t want it!µ Alex screamed, pushing the food away, his face turning bright red as tears formed in the corner of his eyes. ´What are you doing to him?µ ´It·s just a cheese sandwich.µ Wren walked into the kitchen and took out the last yoghurt from the fridge, ´Here, have this,µ she handed it to Alex. ´Yay!µ ´He likes yoghurt for breakfast,µ she explained. Hunter looked a bit sheepish, ´oh well« is this ok with you?µ ´Yeah, it·s fineµ she dropped the bag to the floor, sat down, grabbed a sandwich and began to pick at it. ´What do you mean ¶were leaving·?µ ´There·s no reason to stayµ ´But we have to. The police will want to talk to usµ ´Yeah, and what will that achieve? The sooner we go, the better, else we might be taken in as suspects.µ ´Then we have to tell them what happenedµ ´We hardly know what happened ourselves. Actually, yeah. We·ll just tell them that some guy in a wolf-mask came and killed everyone but us. We are the only ones left; we don·t know why this happened or who he is. We don·t e ven know why he didn·t kill usµ ´They could find him thoughµ ´Anyway, I don·t care what they could do or will do or whatever. I·m leaving and I·m taking Alex with me. I want to find this guy ² I need to know why«what you do, well, that·s up to you.µ Wren said forcefully. She·d already made up her mind and there was nothing Hunter could do to change it.