Four separate stories, four different lives in the wake of the perfect storm. The choices we make are building the new face of humanity. Each day we struggle to survive. No more news, no Hollywood and no political finger pointing. Now the lights are out, water stopped running, this is Our World.
I slid into the open space between the masked man and my son. This was not going to happen again. I bawled up my fists as they began to shake. That same school yard jitter that shook the body whenever things got hairy took over. The sounds became muffled around me the beeping even more incessant now but fading out behind fear and adrenaline. Gas mask lifted up his right hand and revealed a small box similar to the one I had found. It was also beeping. Then I began to notice a faint voice behind the mask. Something that I hadnt expected. He was saying my name. ‘Kurtis, calm down’ I pulled my son closer and let the moment wash over me.
His left hand was palm towards me in a defensive manner. ‘Its Randle, we have to get you and your son covered’ he moved fast as he spoke. Quilts, blankets, pillows and a mattress. Randle threw together a shelter like something you would have dreamt about as a child. He built it in the center of the house and tossed Connor inside and nudged me in next. He threw my newly acquired Nukalert in there with me. The beeping persisted. Then he closed us in. Was there another bomb blast far away? We were clearly being shelter from so sort of fallout.
After the beeping subsided we crawled out of the shelter to find Randle sitting on a hallway bench in the house. I guess he didnt want us coming out of there before it was safe. Fallout storms. He went on to tell me about them after Connor went to sleep. His little brain has had to wrap around so much I felt it best for him to rest afterwards. Also I was concerned about his exposure levels though Randle said the real stuff hadnt rolled into town when Connor was outside.
No one came to clean up. When the bombs went off all over the country we were crippled. SO many died and agencies dispersed. No one cleaned up the fallout. When the wind kicks up it moves the mess around, combines with fallout from other places and travels across the area. The whole community has these Nukalerts. Once the get singing you better get your ass to cover. Now I know. Our world is like some kind of a goddamned video game.
Even more interesting than the circumstance I am in is the people I am in it with. All my career I had been put in tough situations where resourcefulness and quick thinking would help me achieve my goals or sometimes just stay alive. When I look around the room I dont see hardened professionals. I see woman. Girls. Two little girls and the strongest woman I know. Still they haven’t had time to absorb this. As a father it is my job to create a level of normalcy so they can feel as though this world hasnt simply abandoned them.
It’s early as I write this the sun is just creeping up the window pane. Sleep and rest is important so I allow the girls to sleep in. Today we are going to make some deodorant. My girls are beautiful, intelligent and delicate but they sweat like the rest of us. This is a simple lesson not something that is going to physically change our situation but emotionally it will build us stronger. The bonding and the confidence. Dont think for a second that times like these leave no room for insecurity. We will hedge against these things with this little activity.
-1 tbsp. cocoa butter
-1 tbsp. coconut oil
-1 tbsp. shea butter
-1 tbsp. beeswax
-2 1/2 tbsp. arrowroot powder
-1 tbsp. baking soda
-1/4 tsp. vitamin E oil
-15 drops essential oil lavender
1. Melt cocoa butter, coconut oil, shea butter, and beeswax over low heat.
2. Remove pot from heat, then add arrowroot powder and baking soda. Whisk with chopsticks until all powders are dissolved and combined. we will add some lavender essential oils that I packed away.
3. Add mixture to clean, used deodorant container. Place in refrigerator to cool and harden. After this, product may be stored on counter
It had been a few days since the tanks left town. We all wondered what was coming. If nothing was coming than what did that mean for us. The freight in and out of the city had stopped completely and even the most influential of us on the streets were starting to get worried. My food supply was dissipating, especially feeding two. I was getting worried about the future. There would be more dark days ahead.
Dan was smart. He had a lot of ideas and it was nice to have a guy around to get loud and bullshit with. Amigo. It meant more these days than before. Everything crumbled and burning. We are burning to stay warm, burning until there is nothing left to burn. You have to talk to someone about these things. I feel so bad for anyone who is truly alone in this
Like I told you before women just arent the same anymore. They trust no one. Especially a scarred up ex fighter with dark hair and dark skin. I think about love. Its fleeting, often as I walk the emptying streets of Philadelphia. Passed Rittenhouse Square where couples would cuddle up on the benches in the Spring. We live a life of pure magic. In comparison to where we are now you would have had to see it to believe it!
The desks and the chalkboard take me back. I was an awkward kid in school. Imagine that. The boys liked me around but none of them wanted to dance with me. What a pity because I love to dance. It definitely correlates into the bedroom. I miss the bedroom. I sleep in a guitar closet now. It has been about 2 years since a nice warm bedroom.
I watch the victims manage their way through these halls. I want to rescue them but there is no where to take them. All I can do is force their captures to abandon ship and hope they dont burn the place down when they do. There is food coming in on trucks from where I dont know. These kids dont want to eat. Their bodies are yearning for something else. Something that only the men with the guns can administer. Its an atrocity and I will enjoy putting an end to it.
Its a quiet time. I have to write. I am ever alone. I feel like I will die alone. The notepad helps. Though, it would be great to just latch onto someone with caring eyes and tell all, like some strange symbiont. Weigh them down with all the problems of the world. Maybe I should consult my maker. Where is he in all of this. All of this horror. Or is this his doing. There is so much mystery up there. Thats why I had trouble with religion. Never knew when I was doing right or wrong or how much wrong was right.