Red woke to a hollow jangling sound, cans knocking together; the early warning system he had cobbled together between the trees downhill. A zombie running into the string, or just the wind? There was a strong breeze tonight, but had to check nonetheless.
He froze when he saw the boy: eight, maybe ten years old, emaciated, shivering. Unnoticed, he watched the boy examine the cans, growing increasingly frustrated at finding them all empty.
“Kid.” Red said it quietly, so as not to frighten the boy. “I’ve got food in the tree-house.”
The boy ran off, down the hill.