We press on at a faster pace, I’m barely able to keep up with Alvii as we push our way through the trees. I can imagine home and my hut with my things within, those thoughts drive me harder and push me to keep going. We pass the clearing with the destroyed Amazon, I chance a glance at it but it has not moved. A life ended too soon, I’m not sure if I should be happy about that or not. I’m glad Alvii is unaffected by things like this, it would more off putting if the machine could feel emotions like anger or sadness. We press on in silence, the sun arching high in the sky. My stomach rumbles and Alvii stares at me, I give him an embarrassed smile “Just hungry, pass me my pack?”
“O-Of course.” We stop, he hands me the pack and I open it, it takes some digging but I find a small bit of jerky. “D-Do you have more food?”
“I don’t think so, this will have to last till we’re home.” I rip off a small portion and eat it, its not enough but I won’t tell Alvii that. It shoulders the pack again and we keep going. The silence was nice on the way to the waste lands but going home I feel the need to talk. “What was it like?”
“W-What was what like?”
“Your… unending rest?” It looks at me.
“I-It was like nothing. I-It was like going into stasis.” I nod and the silence returns, this time I let it go unbroken. I look over my shoulder and sigh, along with our footprints there is a trail of drips, black and green-yellow. Small spots but there none-the-less. The sun descends slowly and though I’m exhausted I don’t want to stop.
The sun is gone, we have traveled all day and yet my batteries are only drained half way. I look to Hera, her pace has slowed and she is yawning more and more often. “D-Do you wish to sleep?”
“I mean I need sleep, but I don’t want to stop. Do you need to rest?”
“N-No, my batteries have sufficient charge to carry on.” She nods, I can tell she is to tired to keep going.
“Then let’s keep going for now.” I shake my head.
“I-It is unwise to push yourself. I-If you wish to keep going I will carry you so you may rest.” She stops and looks at me, her expression unreadable.
“You’re willing to do that?”
“Y-Yes, you are very light to me, it will be no trouble for me to carry you.” She hesitantly nods, I adjust the pack then crouch down allowing her to climb on my back. When she is comfortable I rise up and keep walking, it does not take long for her to doze off. I walk most of the night, before sensors warn me of my low batteries. Finally I must rest, I do not wake her, instead I carefully set her down against a tree and use her bed roll as a blanket. She sleeps peacefully while I sit and allow stasis to wash over me.
It is not long before I am awake again, the sun is rising and Hera’s eyes flutter open, she looks around and then at me, giving me a sleepy smile. “I-I went as far as I could last night, shall we start again?” She nods and stands slowly, rolling the bed roll takes no time and again we are off.