"I screamed, probably letting everyone know where we were, and then it jumped and lounged straight for me."
I covered my head with my arms and bent my upper half of my body over Aaron. I heard a loud growl in my heard, then a loud band, a whimper, and silence. I was scared to open my eyes. "Jenny?" I opened my eyes and looked up and up and up.
"PATRICK!" I yelled. A huge smile crept onto my face but he keeled down and covered his palm over my mouth.
"Ssshh!" He said and looked down at Aaron's head on my lap, who, surprisingly, was still asleep. "Is he alright?" His eyes held a lot of concern but I reassured him that Aaron would be fine.
"I can't believe it's you!" I whispered with a lot of enthusiasm for a girl in my situation. I gently placed Aaron's head on the ground and I jumped up, threw my arms around Patrick's neck, he held me in a tight hug, I closed my eyes, and then I went back in time.
April 19th 2017
Patrick and I met very briefly a few years ago at a homeschool prom. Then in 2016 we started talking on Facebook. We became best friends! He is so easy to tease him and I'm even easier to tease, so he says. He loves to make fun of my clumsiness and the fact that I am 5ft and he is over 6ft tall. Aside from teasing each other on a pretty much daily basis, we can always count on each other to be a shoulder to cry on and just be an amazing friend.
April 19th I climbed into the backseat of Patrick's dad's car around 10:30 am because he was driving Patrick and I to a mutual friend, John Paul's, birthday party. "GOOD MORNING!" I said with a lot of bliss.
"Oh fuck. No. Dad. We can't do this. I forgot Jenny was a morning person. No. Get out of the car, Jen." Patrick threw his head back in the passenger side front seat and looked like all the life had been drained from him.
"Shut the fuck up, Patrick. You love me!" I laughed and pulled out my phone and started recording our drive and our insults back and forth to each other. We also talked about Star Wars and super heroes because Patrick is obsessed with both of them.
Later at the party Aaron came over and joined everyone in the pool. That was one of my favorite days. Patrick and I got to hang out and talk a lot and I think about it very often. Aaron, of course, being my first best friend, Patrick is the very next best friend I have.
I opened my eyes.
I was devastated to think that I had lost my best friend. He always was able to cheer me up, make me laugh, and I could always count on him to have my back. Seeing him alive and here with me now brought me so much joy but also pain when I remembered all the friends that I actually lost. Patrick pulled me away from him but held me by the shoulders. "Are you alright? Did that animal bite you or scratch you?" He kept looking me up and down and sounded frantic.
"I'm fine. I'm lucky you showed up. What are you doing here anyway? I thought you were...well...you know." My voice faded and I stared at my shoes.
"Dead?" Patrick laughed. "I was. Well almost. But I'll tell you about that some other time. First, we HAVE to get you and Aaron out of the middle of these woods. Oh and that little girl? Who is she anyway? Forget it. That doesn't matter right now. It is not safe here. There may not be soldiers here but the wild animals are just as bad. I was staying in a cave in these woods not too far from here. C'mon. It's safe there." Patrick started helping Aaron to his feet and when Aaron was jostled awake he looked very surprised to see Patrick too. I guess he was thinking what I was thinking. Sarah and I followed behind Aaron and Patrick as lead us to this damp cave that was about a mile west of where we were camped out. From the looks of the inside, Patrick was planning on staying there a while. There was sleeping bag and a pillow lying on the ground, a couple of backpacks and wooden crafts with canned food in it, a small unlit campfire inside, and if it weren't for the circumstances, it would be pretty cozy. "Make yourself comfortable." Patrick said to me over his shoulder while he gently set Aaron down on the floor with his back against a pile of backpacks. Patrick made sure Aaron was okay and then turned to and said, "You better get some sleep. You look like shit."
"Jerk." I said and sat myself down next to Aaron who then laid his head on my shoulder. I looked to my left to check to see how Sarah was doing. She was sitting on a box with her back against the cold stone wall of the cave. Her eyes were closed and she appeared to be sleeping. "You should get some sleep too. We will talk in the morning." I closed my eyes and tried to relax a little bit. I wondered what Patrick went through to get here. How was his family? I had a lot of questions.
Find Me is back with part four! I hope you guys enjoy it. Let me know what ya'll think in the comments down below!