“You would be a pretty fierce daddy bear to a little girl.”
“I’d fucking kill anyone who came near her,” I tell her. “Maybe it’s not a good idea.”
Hannah lays her head on my shoulder. A few minutes later, she’s asleep, but I’m still thinking about her question.
I don’t care much about repopulating the planet. I just don’t care to think that globally. I don’t even know what there is out there beyond the Metro Atlanta area, but it’s likely more of the same. What kind of life is that for kids?
What kind of life did I have before?
Before all of this, I had my job and my memories. The job was just something I did, and the memories haunted me. My most intimate actions involved a bottle or surfing the internet on my phone. Now I have Hannah and Charles. I have a reason to exist in this world, so maybe I shouldn’t judge it too unfairly.
I don’t know what kind of future Charles will have. Hell, I don’t know what the future holds for any of us. But I know we’re alive, and we have each other. One way or another, we’re going to make a life for ourselves in this new world.
I coil my arms around my family and listen to their slow, steady breaths.
In a world where everything was accessible with a few clicks on a smartphone, I had nothing. In a world of chaos where we have to fight for our very existence, I have everything.
I feel fine.
I feel needed.
I’m whole again.