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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  No Houses
The storm of war has come, can he make it out alive?

*Reached 100 Reads: 9/17/2016*

Submitted: June 29, 2016

A A A | A A A

Submitted: June 29, 2016



I don’t remember the last time things were so quiet, so..peaceful. I wonder if this is what it feels like to die, to be taken over completely by an overwhelming sense of peace and tranquility. Maybe I was actually dying. Hell, death sounds pretty good right about now. Life hasn’t been the same since the war started, and I don’t think it’ll ever be the same again. I’m not even sure what year it is, at this point, all I know is that Janurary 23rd, 2077; was the day that everything went to shit.


World War III came out of fucking nowhere, there were warning signs but..fuck, no one actually thought it would happen. Never in my lifetime did I think that I would see a ground invasion of the United States, but it fucking happened. We should’ve known that playing games with China, a nation with over a billion fucking people, wasn’t gonna go well. They sent their armies in quick and fast, easily overwhelming us. They came in with super cybernetic soldiers, half man and half machine. Fuckers were goddamn killing machines as it as, but with the element of surprise on their hands? Shit, it was a disaster.


I got the fuck out of Maryland really quick. As soon as shit started going south, the national guard came through to evacuate us out of there. I rode with those guys for a while, but eventually we got separated in an attack, and that was probably months ago by now. I don’t know where the rest of my family is, I was with my girlfriend Kayla when everything went bad. I knew that going south was the right option, we never would’ve made it during the winter up north. I thought maybe Mexico might let us in, last time the television was broadcasting, they said that the Mexican government was accepting Americans trying to escape the war. I heard the Canada was too, but we would’ve froze to death up north before we made it there.  


Right now, we’re not far from the border. I think we’re in northern Arizona, I’ve seen a couple of signs for Flagstaff, and we’re surrounded by pine trees. We’ve done a mix of walking and carjacking to get here, right now we were lucky enough to have found a car with gas. Flagstaff could potentially be a safe haven. And if not, at least it should have a lot of supplies. We set up camp around the car, nothing fancy, just a tent big enough for two and a campfire. I stared more intently into our campfire, thinking more about how much I wanted things to go back to the way they were. I looked up at the night sky, and all you could is stars for miles and miles. It was a full moon tonight, too, must be the middle or near the end of the month, only surefire way to tell time these days. There weren’t any clouds out tonight, and I could see the Milky Way galaxy. Despite all the death and destruction, nature sure as hell still amazes me. I wonder if there’s any aliens out there somewhere, watching all this shit happen like it’s a reality show. I bet they think we’re a bunch of fucking idiots.


I heard a rustling behind me somewhere, instantly pulling out my M1911 pistol. I turned my head quickly, only to see it was just Kayla climbing out of the tent. I sighed and holstered my gun.


“Christ girl. You nearly gave me a heart attack.” I said, with a chuckle.


“Sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you.” She replied, sitting down next to me.


I looked at her and a smile stretched across my face. Even if we were dirty as hell, she was still insanely beautiful. Her black hair was tied back messily into a bun, and her emerald eyes looked incredible in the glare of the fire.


“It’s late, what are you still doing up?” She asked, looking at me curiously.


I shrugged. “I needed some time to think, that’s all. Plus it’s beautiful out tonight.”


“What were you thinking about?”


I paused for a second, and took a deep breath before speaking.


“I was thinking about, how things used to be.”


“I think a lot about it to, mostly my friends. And my family. The not knowing, that’s what really kills me.” Kayla replied, her eyes heavy with sadness.


I looked away from her and then back at the fire and sighed.


“It gets to me too, sometimes. It’s not like we could go and get them. We didn’t have a choice in the matter. Look you know...you know that we’d go back for them if we could. But Maryland’s way too dangerous now, too close to DC.” I explained.


She let out a heavy sigh, then stared at the fire as well.


“I know, I know. I just wish we could, you know? I’ve had dreams about it.”


I nodded in agreement. “Same here. I’ve had those dreams of us just busting in there, taking back the entire state, just the two of us.”


A smile stretched across her face. It’s been awhile since I’ve seen her smile.


“The two of us taking on a whole fucking army, and winning. Can you imagine that?” She asked, looking back at me.


“We already are kind of doing that, wouldn’t you agree?” I replied.


She gave a nod of agreement. “I think so, yeah.”


We were both silent for a few minutes, with both of us just staring into the fire. And then, Kayla looked at me and said:


“Your beard has come in really nicely, Zane.”


It was true, I did think I looked pretty nice aside from all the dirt on me. My chestnut brown hair has grown down the my jawline by this point, and my matching colored beard has grown in quite thick. I got a chance to look at myself in the mirror earlier, my eyes look a paler gray than I remembered.


I gave her a smile and a laugh. “Thanks for noticing, love. I’ve been working on it.”


It was silent again for a few minutes. I went back and forth from looking at the sky, to the fire, and to Kayla. Even though things were pretty shitty, somehow going through this with her, made it all the much easier to deal with.


“You think that Flagstaff is safe?” Kayla asked me, taking a serious tone.


“Truth be told, I have no fucking idea. Who knows what’s out there. I think if there was some kind of fighting there we would’ve heard or seen something by now.” I replied, trying to keep her calm while being realistic.


“I guess you’re right. Plus maybe the U.S. has a strong footing there. Maybe it’s a safe zone or something.” Kayla added.


“Could also be completely destroyed by the damned Chinese.” I said with anger coating my every word.


“Let’s just hope it’s abandoned. I think we should get in under the cover of darkness, and scavenge what we can and keep heading south.” She said with confidence.


I gave her a smile and touched her shoulder. “That’s what I’m talking about.”


Kayla leaned over and rested her head against my neck while I wrapped my arm around her.


“Do you think that they’ll let us in?” She asked, with fear coating her words.


“I hope so. I really do.” I replied.


“Hey, Zane. Can I ask you something?” She asked, sounding worried and saddened.


“Of course. You can always ask me anything.” I answered, with a soft smile.


“Do you think that we’ll ever go back to being normal?” She asked, her voice dripping with sadness.


“Of course, love. Why would you even ask that?” I replied, confused.


She shrugged. “It’s just that, we’ve been running for so long. Living on so little. Never knowing what day is going to be our last. We’ve killed people, Zane. How do we come back from that?”


Shit, she had a point there. We’ve lived day to day for a long time. Going without food or water multiple days, barely surviving some encounters we’ve had, running constantly from an army and with no knowledge that Mexico is even going to let us in their borders. We have had to kill a lot of people, survivors just like us. People who are scared, hungry, just like us. People who don’t know what’s gonna happen or where to go. It does weigh on my mind some days.


I do wonder sometimes, how can we just forget all of this happened. I’ve shot people, stabbed them, stole from them, ran them over, etc. We’ve had to turn people away who have children because we simply just can’t help them. I’ve seen soldiers, both Chinese and American, execute other soldiers and civilians in horribly brutal ways. I’ve even seen them kill children. She was right, I don’t how things are gonna be once we are in safety. We’re gonna need a lot of therapy, that’s for sure.


I let out a heavy sigh.


“I don’t know, Kayla. I really don’t. We’re gonna need lots of therapy, that’s for sure. Who knows, how long it will take for us to come back from this. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t. We have to keep trying, no matter how hard this gets for us. We’re almost there, it’s almost over I promise.” I said, trying my best to reassure her.


She was silent for a while. “Okay, Zane.”


I kissed her on the top of her head. “Go back to sleep, I’ll come join you.”


Both of us got up and I stomped out the fire while Kayla slipped back into the tent. I watched as the last few embers dissolved into nothingness, and then I looked back up at the Milky Way galaxy above. I don’t know what’s out there, and I don’t know if we’re even gonna get into Mexico. But we have to try, at this point, it’s do or die.


I let out a sigh and walked back into the tent, lying down next to Kayla. She snuggled closer to me and I put my arms around her and closed my eyes. Right now, it felt peaceful. It was almost too peaceful. I wondered if this is what dying felt like, an overwhelming sense of peace and tranquility. Hell, I wouldn’t mind it if this was me dying and I didn’t know it, sure would beat the hell out of living.




Word Count: 1771

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