The night the explosions rocked the station and the 113 held onto one another, knowing that the chances of them surviving the night ahead were slim, something miraculous happened. Each and everyone dedicated themselves to the survival of one another. The idea of being lonely islands separate from each other disappeared entirely and the soul of a community was formed. When the sun rose and they climbed out of their various hiding places, a simple but very effective idea was presented, agreed upon by all, and then put into place. They divided themselves into eleven groups, most of which had ten members and three of which had eleven. From each group, they would elect a leader to represent the other ten. From those elected eleven, they would elect a single leader whose role was primarily to break the vote in case of a tie.
Over the years, each group became known as the eleven families. Now with more than four hundred people to care for, the families were the pillars of their small society. Everyone in the community found their purpose and their duties in regard to what their family needed. Each passing year, the one that was to be elected became a more important position; until by the time that Sarah had been voted to be the one to represent her family, the Parkers, she was held in a place of honor throughout the community. Sarah dutifully served her family and quickly gained a reputation as someone who did not argue for the sake of argument, like many of the other representatives did, but was clearly interested in the decisions being effective, not just political.
It did not take long before it was commonly known that if you wanted to get something done, Sarah Parker was the most sensible person to talk to. And on almost every occasion, this proved to be sage advice.
Sarah had been a representative for three years and was at the top of the list regarding those being considered for the leadership role if the current leader ever decided to step down. Sarah never considered it much of an option because the current leader, Benedict Parker, her uncle, was one of the firstborn to the original 113 and the most reputable individual in the entire settlement. Many years ago, he married into the Sanchez family and quickly became the Sanchez leader; leaving the Parkers to send someone else to represent them. Yet the people never stopped thinking of Benedict as a "Parker". There had been rumors of the Parker and Sanchez families merging, but neither family ever gave the thought any real consideration. Sarah's father, Benedict's younger brother, took the mantle of representation until Sarah came of age and then stepped down to make way for her. Sarah's father cared nothing for politics or even the other families. His loves were the tress and the growing of food and the tilling of the earth. He was at peace in the silence and dirt of the farms; while the crowds, small as they were, simply made him anxious.
Benedict, on the other hand, had accomplished much. There had even been rumors that if he would let them, the survivors would have removed the generic title of "leader" and named him something much more important-sounding, like Minister, President, or King as a way of showing their affection for Benedict. Whenever the subject was brought up, he would smile and say "Let the old world have their Kings and their Presidents; let us have our peace.”