Walking was beginning to take its toll on Charlie. She was now trailing behind Aaron who seemed to be breathing harder with every step. She didn't even try to argue when Aaron pleaded for a break. She found an old tree stump to sit on. She took her canteen and took a few large gulps of the now warm water. She then poured some water down her back and face.
After a few moments of rest, Nate told the group he would go and fill up the canteen's from the lake. Charlie offered again to help, but Nate told her to rest. Nora volunteered herself to help fill the water bottles. Charlie could've burned a hole through Nate's skull the way she was looking at him. Why was he avoiding her; he was the one that kissed her. Nate then walked over to grab canteen; Nate's touch made Charlie's heart flutter as he grabbed the canteen. Why did she act like this way around him?
Charlie then, trying to get out of her head, noticed Miles looking into the woods. Miles looked weird; something about his demeanor was different. "Miles, you okay?"
Charlie stood to go see whatever it was that had Miles was looking at. Charlie had only taken a few steps when she almost fell; luckily, Aaron was there to grab her.
"Thank you Aaron, I'm okay. Really Aaron I'm fine, just lost my balance." Charlie said squirming out of Aaron's arms. She then felt arms around her waist again. "Aaron I'm fine." Charlie said as she reached to remove his hand.
Charlie realized it wasn't Aaron helping her back to the old tree stump, but Nate. She didn't try and fight him off like she did with Aaron. She let him help sit her back down. When sat down, they both couldn't take their eyes off each other. They only broke contact when Miles and Nora said they had news.
"So there seems to be a town through the woods and down the ways a little. There could be supplies and it should be a faster way than walking around it. The downside is it could be dangerous. I don't know who or what is inside there. Nora, Nate and I will go and check it out."
"Why don't we all just go?"
"I need you and Aaron to stay and make dinner, gather firewood, and just rest. We should be back within a few hours."
She knew there would be no use in arguing. So, as they left Charlie closed her eyes and decided to take a short nap.
Charlie woke up still feeling tired and sluggish. She could smell something delicious. She found Aaron sitting by a fire cooking something in a pot.
"Aaron that smells so good. I'm so hungry." Aaron then handed Charlie a wooden bowl they made back at the village. She had no idea what it was that she was eating, but it tasted so good.
Charlie liked her lips after liking the bowl lean, "That was delicious, is there anything I can do?"
Aaron seemed pleased that she enjoyed the meal. "I used most of the firewood while cooking. I was about to go and gather some more."
Charlie was on her feet before he could finish his sentence. "Say no more. I'll be right back."
It was just starting to get dark out when she was heading back. She gathered the most firewood her arms would allow her to carry, but Aaron wasn't by the fire. She dropped the firewood. "Aaron?"
A figure appeared out of nowhere, "Hello princess." He said before hitting her in the head with a large branch.
Charlie slowly opened her eyes. Her head was throbbing with pain. She tried to move her hands. They were tied behind her back, as well as her feet. She was still in the woods, it was still night. She heard a sound coming from behind her, she pretended to be asleep.
She could feel his eyes on her. "I saw you fidgeting, I know you are awake." She opened her eyes and tried to position herself up.
She saw her abductor, he was regular size guy, a little short, and he looked like he had never taken a bath before in his life. "Who are you? What do you want from me?" Charlie pleaded.
He took out a large hunter knife from a dark brown leather case that was strapped to his belt. He grabbed her chin as she fought to get his hands off her. He put the knife to her face, "I want to cut that pretty little face of yours."
Charlie threw her body around trying to get his hands off her. He then threw her head into the dirt and a rock hit the corner of her eye. Blood dripped from her face down onto her pants.
The man walked out of her viewing distance and Charlie tried to wiggle her way out of the knots again. It was no use; she was not going to be able to get out of it. She looked around trying to see where she was, but everything looked the same.
As he stepped back into sight, she noticed he was eating. She then thought of Aaron, "Hey, what happened to my friend? Did you hurt him? Is he alright?"
"Hey, I'm talking to you! If you hurt him, I'll…." The man then turned towards her and smacked Charlie in the face.
He laughed, "What would you do if I did hurt him, princess? Mhmm…What. Would. You. Do?"
Charlie looked in his eyes and said, "I'd kill you."
This made him laugh even harder. "Don't worry you sweet little head. I didn't touch him. I'm only after you."
This came at a complete surprise, "Me? I haven't done anything?"
The man ran his fingers through his unwashed hair, "No, but you will have to die. Miles will have to see you die." His voice was like ice.
"Miles, you know Miles?" Charlie said trying to figure out what was going on.
Charlie was dozing off when she heard a voice yell her name. She screamed for help. It was Nate; he was running towards her, she was so relieved. For a moment, she thought she was saved. She then saw the man behind him; he knocked Nate unconscious with the back of a shotgun.