An Old Friend

Rose Butler was one of the oldest members of the zone. Her husband died a few years before the outbreak. Her son Lawrence was the only family that she had left. Rose and I were neighbors before the outbreak and again here in the Zone. When the word came to evacuate, I made her come with me. She didn’t want to. She insisted that her son was coming to get her, but I wanted to get out of the city as quickly as possible.

Lawrence and I were friends when we were younger. We grew up together, but after high school we grew apart. He spent a dozen or so years after graduation “finding himself”. I don’t know if he ever found what he was looking for. The last that I heard, he wanted to do something with animals.

Every morning when my squad would go out on patrol, Mrs. Butler would find me with the same request. “Find my Lawrence, and bring him back with you.” I always responded that I’d keep an eye out for him and she would smile. I knew that there was no way that I could ever find him, but she needed that hope to keep going.

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