Dan looked at the piece of paper Sam was holding out to him, at a young child’s drawing of a teddy bear with one eye missing. “Yeah, the one Raven found looked something like that.” He gave Sam a questioning look.
Sam carefully folded the paper again, placed it in his pocket. “Seven children,” he said, taking his time. “They were here before we arrived, hiding underground. Only one has made contact, the youngest one. She wants her teddy back. Can you get Raven to return it?”
“Seven children?” Dan stared at him. “That’s great! We’ve got to get them to the community ……”
“No!” Sam said sharply. “They’re not ready for that. When they trust me like the little one does, maybe then we can try. But until then, no-one’s taking them anywhere.” He gave Dan a look that made the older man flinch. “I’m trusting you to tell no-one. The preacher doesn’t know they’re here, no-one knows but you and me and Sally.”
“Doesn’t matter that she does. She’s not interested in kids. And she knows I’m protecting them. I’m trusting you because I want you to get her teddy back.”
“Okay,” nodded Dan. “Can I see them?”
“No. The little one won’t come out when there’s other people around. None of them will. We have to give them time.”
“We thought it was Sam, that premonition of danger all of us were getting, but it’s Sally and that ….” Raven sighed, looked up at Sage, “…. that’s a whole lot worse. She’s got herself infected with the GOD virus and what it’s transforming her into scares the hell out of me. And she knows about Rosie. Knows Rosie’s an inbetween like me.”