They emerged from their shelters. Some more guarded than others. The younger ones, of course, were more exuberant. They shook hands, hugged and kissed and breathed in the fresh air.
I squinted into the light and adjusted my facemask with my gloved hands. We had been told it was safe to come back above ground. The virus had gone, the air was safe once more. Did I trust them this time after the mistakes that had been made before? They swore the vaccines worked this time.
We had waited another few days after they had told us it was safe. Caution stemming the desire to see daylight once more. Now I stood and squinted at the bright sky over the hills. It was a long walk back to the city, and who knows what we might find when we got there.
I set off along the track, following the others. There was hope and optimism at least. Guarded optimism.