Everyone must eat, radioactive apocalypse not-withstanding. It’s almost dark out. Is it evening? It’s hard to tell between day and night. Shawn Curie leaves the relative safety of his shelter to set out to forage for food. In the dense forest, now made inhospitable by radioactive fallout, food is scarce; but a keen intellect goes a long way.
While searching under rocks for some critters unaffected by the new reality, Shawn’s Geiger counter chirps in the background with each stone overturned. Suddenly, he hears a rustling over his shoulder in the woods behind him.
A pair of glowing eyes and a pelt of patchy, bristling hair emerges from the shadows. At first there is only one and then many appear. Shawn, realizing his danger, hurls the rock in his hand at the beast closest to him and makes a break for the edge of the forest. He throws branches and kicks up rocks behind him during the chase to improve his odds of escape.
Just as it appeared that the beasts behind him were gaining on his position, he bursts through a thicket of brambles into the sun. It is daytime after all. Turning on his pursuers, he brandishes a wrench from his tool belt, but finds himself alone. There’s hissing and sputtering coming from within the brush, but slowly it dissipates and moves off into the distance.
From the corner of his eye, Shawn sees the abandoned remnants of an old gas station mart. He says out loud to no one in particular, “Perhaps I’ll find an old candy bar or a bottle of water in good condition.” He makes his way towards the building. Approaching the entry, he stops short and stands shocked by who he sees there.
To be continued...