Twenty minutes later, Ryan and I are still running. But we've slowed down to a fast jog, growing tired in the day's rising heat.
Another brilliant idea pops into my mind.
"Ryan, I have an idea. And I promise that if we execute it perfectly, it won't kill us," I say, stopping now that we're a full three miles away from Boxes Emporium and Rex.
I lay out my idea to Ryan, and he smiles. "So you are useful for other things..." he says lightheartedly, trying to bring back our good sense of humor from the previous day.
"Yeah. I'm great with strategizing plans..." I say, proud to have another useful skill that can keep us alive, maybe...
"There's the gun store," Ryan says, pointing up a head.
"Is that a Mercedes in the parking lot?" I ask, surprised.
"Yeah... That wasn't there yesterday, was it?"
"No," I reply, confused and a little scared. "Do the Jacks suddenly know how to drive?"
"I hope not."
"Do you think the other person, or people, will be friendly to us?" I ask.
"Hard to say. You would think that they would be, considering the situation. But you never know. When people are in a panic, and scared, they'd do anything to survive, even if that means killing us or anyone else they meet."
"That's reassuring. Thanks for staying positive with me, Ryan."
"Hey. I'm just saying the truth. I don't want you expecting them to be friendly, and find out that they're willing to point a pistol at your head and shoot your brains out."
"Again, nice positivity. It's very helpful. I'm not feeling the least pessimistic." I say, punching his shoulder lightly.
We enter the parking lot slowly, tired from the eight mile run, and weary of our surroundings.