Gabriel wasn't quite sure where he was, but it was hot. He could feel the sweat that trickled down his temple and knew his blond hair was damp with it, sticking to the skin of his face. His clothes were not much better, the humidity creating an added layer of stickiness to the air, trapping the heat that wafted up from the black asphalt below his feet. The sun was a merciless master from its perch high above and he resisted the urge to look up, knowing it was an entirely human inclination and a stupid one at that. It sometimes - and now often, which probably should have been alarming - struck him how very different his thinking was after nearly four years living with the Dark Fever Virus. He had long ago started to see things as 'human thinking' and....well, not animal thinking, but certainly 'instinctual thinking'. The things that didn't make sense in his mind, didn't pertain to survival, didn't benefit him in any way, didn't keep him safe or provide an advantage in this brutal world - those things were deemed human logic and most often it wasn't logical at all. So it was ignored. Just as he ignored the strange impulse to look up at the sun right now. It wouldn't help him and it wouldn't stop the heat, so it was a useless endeavor. Stopping at the settlement just ahead was another matter. As a rule, an unspoken one, but followed nonetheless, Gabriel didn't often stop at places populated with a great deal of people, especially not small, rural settlements like this one. These kinds of places were not regulated between Infected and the Normals. Everyone fended for themselves and while trade flowed unhindered, so did death and the story was the same with every settlement of this kind; eventually everyone would find themselves Infected and the Normals would be obsolete. It was a savage system, but the DFV didn't ask for permission to change or kill its victims and the Virus was highly contagious. Normals risked being around Infected at their own peril. Still, trading posts like this continued to exist and right now it would benefit him. He needed water, medical supplies and a new shirt. Amber eyes glanced down at his attire with a bit of a grimace. He was covered in dirt, but that wasn't unexpected of anyone these days. Traveling by foot saw more wear and tear to clothing than the clothing itself was used to dealing with and that didn't take into account being jumped, mugged or having to fight. The tears in his shirt were from the very latter.....he thought. A frown flickered over the blond's features before he shook the thought away and focused back on the settlement. It had a wall built of chainlink fences, storage containers, semi-trucks and other things like boards and cement blocks all mashed together, but the gates were open and would likely remain so until twilight approached. Trade couldn't happen if no one was let in or out. It was a risk, but it was one that had to be taken for the survival of the community if they wanted to function as a trade post. Passing under the gates and the guards posted, Gabriel wasn't stopped, just another traveler coming through and upon coming under the netting of sheets and other coverings strung out above the marketplace to keep out the unforgiving sun, he took off the covering over his head and allowed himself to truly feel the relief of shade. It was then that his dark amber eyes started to truly study all around them, noting those who wore more coverings than most, gloves included that marked them as Normals - or those who had powers they couldn't control - and how people interacted. So far everything seemed semi-friendly, distrust and wariness expected in a world that had fallen apart around them, the death toll unimaginable and people separated into groups afterward. As far as cooperation went, though, it was on a good scale here and he allowed some of his tension to relax by a few notches. His senses never stopped working, though; ears taking in the sound of many voices, animals, metal striking metal, walking, running, pots and pans, yelling, cursing, laughing. It seemed impossible to sort through, but he'd had years of practice and such seemed like second-nature now. As did taking in every scent, every smell of food, unwashed bodies, the different aromas that Normals and Infected gave off, dirt and oil, water... It was the last that truly caught his attention, the most needed among what he'd come here for and the blond changed directions, following his nose to the source of the unique scent.