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Dust--The Endgame

Short story By: Hyaena

And thus it is, that the world begins to end, first with a bang, and then with a whimper...

Submitted:Jul 24, 2008    Reads: 240    Comments: 12    Likes: 7   


No one really noticed that we were scooting closer and closer to war, until it was pretty much too late to prepare.

We got complacent in these days after the Cold War; the fallout shelters gathered dust and no one kept any kind of plan for what to do if the nation was under attack. So... when the jarring tones of the EAS broke through television and radio broadcasts, it immediately resulted in a clusterfuck.

I was a little more prepared than most; living through a couple of hurricanes and one major earthquake had taught me to at least keep some supplies on hand and accessible. That's why I am sitting in this basement, writing this; I've got to be one of the very few that's still alive.

This town is a good place to be to avoid the direct effects of a nuclear bomb; not so good for avoiding fallout. I kind of figured that out about seventy-two hours after the nukes started flying; I stuck my head out of here to see what condition my land was in. Basically... everything's dead. Even the plant life is withering up, and this nasty grey dust is everywhere. Didn't touch anything; I just decontaminated and ran back inside.

I have some big decisions to make. In two weeks, supposedly most radioactive isotopes decay to a lower level... what do I call it? Safe? Acceptable? Less lethal? Either way, it's supposed to be all right to go outside, and I can't stay here. I'll be out of food and water and I doubt anything here is going to be safe to eat or drink. I know some wildcrafting, but what's the point if all the flora and fauna's as radioactive as an old joke?

The decision I make is whether to live or die. I've got the means to take my own life; I have both a hunting rifle and a handgun. The urge to live is incredibly strong, but so is the desire not to die a slow and painful death from thirst or starvation. That's not even taking into account that I may very well get a lethal dose of radiation if I go slogging across the landscape.

I remember the glow off to the north, when the city got hit. I had a choice then, too; run around screaming and freaking out, or just take the actions I knew to take. I did the second, and, for some reason, I laughed the entire time.

The planet will recover; humanity, I'm not so sure. Good old Terra will do better without us in such huge, environment-destroying numbers, though. More later.



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