The enclave

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is a story about a small group of people stranded on a deserted island, it is loosely based on the "men vs women" season of Dutch survivor and is trying to explore(based on the actions of both groups in that show) how would the events unfold had it been a real situation instead of a reality show.

Disclamer: if you are easily offender do not read this story, if you read it anyway and get offended dont come bit***ng to me, you were warned.

Submitted: June 01, 2015

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Submitted: June 01, 2015

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The enclave

It was a summer 2032 and once again people prepared for a new season of Survivor tv series, 10 men were selected and 10 women and they were to form two tribes on two separate islands, one consisting only of men and the other consisting only of women, while in the first day men built a primitive shelter women have done nothing but

sunbathe, two days have passe, some men started making fishing rods out of bamboo, women still debated who should be in charge. Three days have passed and it was time for the first tribal council, both tribes gathered on the tribal council area that was just a set of chairs and a fire place, they voted one of the men off the island, Michael. Reasons were never clear, it was too early for alliances and blocks to form, it was but a random chance, the boat was scheduled to arrive for Michael next morning, but it never came.

Unbeknownst to our contestants in there absence the third world war has started, China and USA were at each others throats for years and China finally snapped when USA conducted a series of military drills in the international waters. China demanded apologies, USA claimed they have every right to conduct drills in international waters, China called on their allies for support, USA did the same, harsh words were exchanged, swords were rattled, and then nukes started flying, first nuke was launched by USA as a retaliation for Chinese subs sinking USA battle groups in international waters, China retaliated with nukes of there own, it did not take long for nukes to start flying freely between the two sides, society collapsed, survivors banded together into gangs to fight for precious few resources that were left and nobody remembered a small groups of people far on the island out in the Atlantic.

It took ten days for the survivors to realize they are on their own, then panic ensued, in women camp the result was widespread depression, on the man island one man rose up to the position of leader, his name was Hector, he was an amateur archeologist and had knowledge of primitive civilizations far in excess of any other member of the group, he was a logical choice for a leader and men's pack mentality insured that they started following him, there were problems of course, two brothers Adam and Mark refused to follow Hector, saying they will fend for themselves. Hector approached the older brother, Adam, who was obviously in charge and said, you think you can do a better job being leader, go ahead, let's settle this like men, then he punched him across the face with his fist. Adam recoiled at this sudden display of strength, but recovered quickly and punched Hector right back, or else he tried to, instead Hector just stepped aside and let his Adam be carried away by his momentum and drop on the ground. Planting one leg on Dam's back Hector exclaimed, I am making a new rule right here and now, any of you want to challenge my authority, you can do it at any time, defeat me in an hones brawl and I will step aside, but if you resist me again you will get your ass kicked.

Hector taught men how to make spears out of bamboo and sharpened stones, how to light a fire, how to make ropes from hemp and how to hunt wild boars who were inhabiting the island, some men used ropes to finish the fishing poles they started making earlier and used bone hooks to catch fish. They also started to construct a longhouse out of wood and bamboo leaves to serve as a permanent shelter. Everyone believed that women were getting along just as good, but they did not, a month has passed and Hector decided to send someone over to the woman's island to check up on them, he selected John, a young man who he valued greatly for his intelligence and his hardworking nature.

The two islands were forming a shape of a bowl together with a smaller island in the middle where council site was located, the only way to get from one island to the other without swimming was to follow a thin strip of atoll connecting both islands with a central island. Once John finally arrived over to the woman's island he was shocked, women ate all there food, they built no shelter and were generally miserable, they were trying unsuccessfully to shelter themselves from tropic rain by hiding below the branches of nearby palms, they were unable to light a fire and were always cold during the night.

Once women saw John walk among them there eyes went wide open, he was not only clothed in fur of animals men killed but was also well fed and had his spear in hand. To them he seemed as if Mars from ancient legends walked between them. They all gathered round and examined his clothes, his spear and his set of tools he always carried with him.

Finally after much deliberation they decided to send one of theirs back with John to see if men were better off, as John's appearance seamed to suggest. They choose Hannah, a tall brunette with a degree in economics, in their mind her degree somehow made her qualified to asses if men had it better.

On there way back Hannah kept asking John questions, how did he make his spear, how did he get his clothes, what purpose the tools on his belt were for, yet she flat out refused to believe half the stuff he told her, by the time they reached man's island she was convinced men had outside help some way, that it was all a conspiracy.

Arriving at the longhouse John and Hannah were welcomed by Hector and the rest of the tribe.

Hello John, said Hector, who are you bringing with you?

This is Hannah, she is an emissary by the female tribe, they wanted to learn how we are coping.

Hector told Adam and Mark to show Hannah around the camp and went into the longhouse with John to discuss his expedition.

So John, what did you see on the other side?

It was horrible my friend, they don't have a shelter, no food and they did nothing, they can't even seem to agree upon who is in charge, you should have seen the way the looked at me, as if I was some kind of alien or a deity.

At this moment Hannah entered the tent.

So, she said, cozy little place you got here, but I think it lacks some "female touch", would you be willing to consider an exchange?

Your people are welcome to come here and live with us, under the condition you follow our rules of course, and in this camp the Chieftain's word is the law, I thought

you should know that.

It is not what I had in mind, said Hannah, what if we compromise, me and four more girls will come here and live with you, and five of your guys can go and help out the other girls on our own island, that way everybody wins.

Now Hector was not exactly keen on loosing half of his tribe and getting five strangers instead, but he was wise enough to know men will not just stay on this side while there were girls on the other side, and he was not keen on loosing men that would try to cross the landbridge during the night and fall into their deaths. So he reluctantly agreed to this arrangement.

Tomorrow morning an expedition was assembled, it consisted of John, Adam, Mark, Michael and lastly John's friend William. They gathered some provisions and tools that the tribe could spare and set out to the other island, shortly before reaching the center island they bypassed a woman party, women had nothing but clothes on there back, some seemed somewhat ruffled, as if there was a skirmish about who was to go over to the man island, John wondered if he was looking at winners or looser.

When they reached the center island John ordered a party stopped.

All right everybody, I need to tell you something really important so I need you to listen carefully, I have seen the state women island is, they did not lift a finger to make their situation any better, and they are not likely to do so in the future if we let them. But this is not a game, it is a life and death situation, we don't know why they left us here but by now it is quite obvious that we are on our own, we can't afford to have people who are not pulling their own weight. So when we arrive I need to have your undivided support, am I understood.

They all nodded.

Now here is what we will do, after we establish a shelter and get some food rolling we will have a leverage, we are armed, they are not, we are stronger, we know how to survive, so we make the rules, those who do not follow the rules do not get to eat, do not get to sleep in the warm shelter and do not get to share fruits of our labor. I know this will be difficult for you, as men you are wired to protect and help females but you must suppress that urge, we will all be better off for it in the future.

This women have  proven unable to form any sort of social structure so we will have to enforce our own structure, it is absolutely vital, this is not a cozy civilization where we can afford to be soft, we are on our own, and if we want to survive we need a society that has strong foundation. If any of you have any objections you know the rules, anyone at any time can challenge the chieftain for the position, if one of you can beat me hand to hand I will gladly step down, any objections?

There were no objections.

Somewhat later a group finally reached the other island, John wasted no time, he sent the brothers to search for a source of clean water, Michael was put to work digging up the foundations of a longhouse and him and William set onto gathering logs for the supports, in a couple of hours brothers returned with full jugs of water, only problem was that water was not exactly drinkable, luckily Hector taught the men how to filter the water using sand and charcoal, they had to light the fire anyway so they used a pair of sticks to light a piece of straw, then used that straw to light a small pile of thin branches, it took a while but eventually hey had a fire going, once they gathered some charcoal they grounded it into powder and used one empty jar to filter out the impurities from the water, then they boiled the water

over the fire to clean out any impurities.

The men spent the rest of the day setting supports, making walls and covering the roof of the new longhouse, fireplace they built was positioned in the center of the longhouse.

That evening they ate from their supplies and drunk boiled water, the next day they would have to go and hunt some food tough.

Rain was falling during the night but new longhouse was well built and withstood the storm. The men took turns watching over the fire to make sure it does not get extinguished.

Next morning they divided up into two teams, John and William were going to set off into jungle and try to find some boar, while brothers were supposed to find some fruit, they knew there were coconuts, papaya and bananas on the island for sure and it was very important to find clusters of this fruits for vitamins. Michael was going to stay behind and makes sure that fire does not go out, and also boil some sea water to get much needed salt so they can treat the meat and prevent rotting.

After two hours of tracking William finally noticed boar tracks, they seamed to be fresh, taught by Hector two hunters rubbed themselves in mud to conceal their natural odor and camouflage their bodies.

Suddenly they broke trough the foliage and entered a small clearing, there was a small pack of boars grazing on the other end of the clearing. Two men looked at each other ducked into the tall grass and started to approach the pack, keeping their eyes barely above the grass they spotted their prey, one of the boars separated herself from the pack. Guys approached the boar from opposite sides, William Stuck his spear out pricking the boar in the side, in panic boar jumped up and away skewering herself right on the John's spear. That did not kill the boar however, boars are superbly hardy creatures and guys were perfectly aware that wounded boar was extremely dangerous, they started slowly retreating slowly pricking the boar from both sides in tandem, confusing her as she was unsure which side to charge. Finally

John delivered a killing blow in the neck and the boar grew still. Guys were not out of the woods yet though, sqeeling of a killed boar attracted attention of other packmembers and they were approaching, bent on revenge.

Two men quickly dropped their bloody spears and rolled into the tall grass. That was a great risk, if boars were able to find them they would be unable to defend themselves, however bloody tips of the spears would give up their position for sure, they still bore the scent of killed boar.

Boars started gathering around the killed boar, they were smelling the boar, then the spears, then the air, then boar again. They were sniffing around a few minutes, then got up and went to the jungle. Two men breathed a sight of relief.

It was late in  the afternoon when they returned to the camp, carrying the boar between them. Brothers have already returned, they found some papayas and bananas, as well as some pineapples. They took their stone knives and started skinning the boar, bones were saved for the tools, they cut the meat into thin stripes and put some to cook over the fire, they doused the rest in salt and put them to smoke over the fire.

They ate and had some rest.

This is when women arrived, undoubtedly attracted by the smell of fresh cooked meat. When one is hungry smell of food seems almost heavenly and those women have not eaten anything in two days. One of them approached, almost timid.

Can we have some of that, please? She asked.

Sure you can, as long as you are willing to follow the rules of the tribe, here are the rules, you work, then you eat, you obey the chieftain, you do not slack about.

Am I understood.

The women started thinking it over, then one of them said, wait, how come you get to be the boss, we had no say in the matter, we are all equals here right, should we not get a say in who gets to be a leader?

Nope, I don't think you understand the situation here. You see we hold the food, and the fire, and shelter from the rain, that means we get to make the rules, you either take it or leave it, but if you want to eat you will accept our laws.

That is totally unfair, said one of the women, who gave you the right to choose for all of us?

I gave myself the right, if you want to challenge me you go right ahead, but I must warn you, we solve such things physically in this tribe, if you think you can take me on one on one you go right ahead, otherwise either submit to my rule or leave.

This response brought out a clamor of angry voices from the women, they started swearing, some even tried to get to the food by force but men formed a live wall on the entrance to the longhouse and women were easily repulsed.

Finally one of the woman exclaimed, we will never submit to you, we will rather starve to death then submit to you. You have no right to tell us what to do. And one by one they left the clearing. The last to leave was a petite blonde, glancing one last time at the succulent pieces of meat, with a sigh she turned around and went after the others.

Men gathered around the fire, then John addressed them, Ok guys, I believe we will need to stand watch from now on, we are going to build a platform by the longhouse and one of us will always be up there to warn about anyone approaching, this will be so at all times except during the night and when we are hunting, during which times he will need to keep watch over the fire. We need to make a barricade to prevent the women from charging en masse and taking our food while we are out gathering and hunting.

They set to work, cutting down thin logs and tying them together to form a barred gate, that they then tethered to a post on one side of the main gate. Gate could be secured with a pair of leather belts on the other side of the gate. Then they planted four logs into the ground and built a small platform on top, it could be accessed by a ladder on the side adjacent to the longhouse.

They started to keep two hour long watches on the guard post.

Tomorrow afternoon Adam was on watch, when he saw something moving in the distance, suddenly the branches parted and the same blonde from yesterday entered the clearing. Men gathered in front of the longhouse.

What do you want? Asked John.

I, she hesitated, can I still accept your terms? I am so hungry and I have nowhere else to go, those other women haven't a clue how to take care of themselves, please,

I will do whatever you want, just take me in.

All right, said John, you know the terms, come here.

She complied.

Kneel, then swear your allegiance to me as your leader, and to this tribe.

Why do I have to kneel?

I want to see a gesture of obedience from you before I can let you into our community, for all I know you could be trying to steal our food.

She reluctantly dropped on her knees.

I swear to serve this tribe and obey you as a chieftain, I will not betray you, if I do let me die alone in the jungle.

All right, you can get up. He took her hand and lead her to the longhouse, from a hanger above the fire he took a piece of smoked meat, and took some fruits from the jar by the wall.

You have not done any work for us yet so I am giving you this in good faith, eat, and then join me outside. By the way, you never told me your name.

Jessica, my name is Jessica.

Well, welcome to the tribe Jessica, don't worry, you are safe here.

Jessica sat down by the fire, the warmth felt so good after month and a half of being soaked in rain and exposed to elements. Then she dug into food, it seamed to her like the best thing she ever tasted, in reality it was not yet fully smoked and it was quite dry, but she was so hungry she payed no heed to that.

After she was done she exited the longhouse, John was sitting in front of a tanning rack they built a day before, skin of the boar they killed was stretched between the two posts.

Ah you are here, good, now here is what I want you to do, we need to prepare this pelt for tanning, take this stone knife and clean the inner side of any excess pieces of meat, be careful not to damage the skin, I will show you how. He took a dull knife and started scraping off pieces of meat from the pelt.

We need to make this pelt ready for salting by evening or it will start rotting.

But, my nails will break, I can't do that.

Hold out your hand, he said.

What are you going to do?

I am going to clip your nails, obviously.

No please don't, I love my nails, I always had such beautiful nails, I took care of them since we came to this god accursed place, you can't take them away.

You may not have noticed this missy, but we are not on a field trip here, you swore to obey me, now hold out your hand.

Reluctantly she did as she was told.

From the pocket of his jacket John took out a pair of bone scissors he made while he was still on male island, he took Jessica's hand I his own and said:
now hold still, this are not your ordinary scissors, we have to make due with what we have, bone is a lot more brittle then iron so I had to sharpen the scissors a lot more, if you move suddenly I could cut you, and we don't have provisions to treat infected wounds over here, so be still.

He carefully clipped nails on her right hand, she closed her eyes and averted her head.

Give me your other hand.

She obeyed, he clipped the nails on her other hand.

All right, your nails are no longer a problem, now get on cleaning that pelt.

He gave her a knife and she started scraping the pelt.

No, he said, you are scraping it too soft, here I will show you. He took her hand in his and pressed it onto the pelt.

Here is how you do it, feel the pressure. He scraped the pelt a few times.

You got it?

She repeated the process.

That is good, keep doing that, you are learning.

If you need anything William is keeping watch, just call him if you have any sort of problem.

And saying that he got up and left towards the sea.

Jessica started scraping the skin, after several hours her hands hurt and her wrists ached, but the pelt was nearly clean, that is when John came back, carrying several large fish on his back.

Well, that is very good work Jessica, you picked it up very quickly, finish that out here then come inside,we are having fish tis evening.

Jessica scraped the remaining refuse from the pelt and then entered the longhouse, the brothers gathered more fruits from the fruit trees, and they ate.

Now Jessica, while you were working that pelt Michael built a bed for you by the fire, I suggest you get some sleep, I am sure you did not have a good night sleep in over a month.


Next morning Jessica woke up to the smell of roasting bacon, guys have stuck pieces of bacon on sharp sticks and were roasting them over the fire.

Good morning, said John, come, join us, take a stick over there and make yourself some breakfast. Bacon is one of the few luxuries we have out here, too bad there is

no bread.

Jessica took a stick from the pile and sat by the fire.

So, did you get a good sleep tonight? Asked John.

Thank you, said Jessica, I almost forgot how good it is to sleep on soft and warm bed.

Now listen, said John, the skin you cleaned out yesterday needs to be salted, you will need to rub salt all over the skin to prevent rotting, do you understand?

Jessica nodded.

Good, it is my turn to keep guard so if you need anything just call me.

Everybody went about there business, Jessica started rubbing the salt from the big sack into the freshly cleaned hide, she was about halfway done when she saw other women enter the clearing.

The woman from the day before, after seeing Jessica in the camp started yelling.

You, I did not believe it until I saw it with my own eyes, how could you betray us like this, I thought we were in this together, and then you go and surrender to the

men, like some sort of subservient housewife, where is your pride?

Ha, you talk about pride and yet here you are, wet, hungry and lost, I would a thousand times rather be with the men then with you, at least they seem to know what the heck they are doing, since yesterday I have eaten regularly and slept in a warm bed, all the rest of you were not even good to build a shelter from the rain. If you know what's good for you you will relent, this is no time for pride parades.

At that moment John got down from his post and stepped in front of the longhouse.

I will not have a member of my tribe harassed, he said, if you are here to accept my terms so be it, otherwise get lost.

This is not over, said the woman.

You heard the man, Ursula, get lost.

Ursula hesitated for a moment but seeing a spear in John's hand she turned and left.

John returned to his post, Jessica finished rubbing salt on the skin and then climbed up to John.

Don't be too mad at Ursula, she is just afraid, they all are, I know how it feels being out there.

I am not mad, said John, the leader never let's his feelings get a better of him, still my terms stand, we can't have layabouts in the camp.

I understand that, tell me, what is it you are doing?

Oh this? Just my pet project, sort of, you see hunting boars is dangerous, you need to get very close and boar can easily injure you before you can kill it, I am trying to make a bow. I gathered some feathers from local birds and made tips from stone, but I still need strings, rope is not elastic enough and leather is too
rigid, I have been experimenting with boar guts, I read in a book a long time ago that you can make good bow string from animal guts. I treated it with sea water and powder from some rocks I found on the island, hopefully I will get a desired result, it would be a great help to the guys if they could hunt with ranged weapons.

At that moment they spotted someone moving towards them, it was one of the other women, she approached the camp, John and the rest of the tribe gathered in front of

the longhouse.

Yes, said John.

Um, she said, not knowing how to proceed.

Do you wish to accept the terms and become part of this tribe?

Yes, I am sorry, I don't want to live like that anymore, last night boars were in the valley where I slept, I was shivering whole night hoping they would not attack

me, please just take me in.

John demanded the same thing from this new woman as he did from Jessica, she reluctantly complied.

Now, said John, Follow William here and he will get you something to eat, then he will show you how to spin hemp into rope, did you understand that?

Yes, she said.

Ok, now just one more thing, what is your name?

Brittany, my name is Brittany

Good, Will, take her inside.

William took Brittany by the hand and lead her inside the longhouse.

John climbed back to his post, Jessica soon came after him.

Listen John, I know you must be a strong leader for the tribe, but I also know you have your own needs, I could help you with that, you know...

She trailed off.

No, Jessica I can't, it would drive a wedge between me and the men, I can't take a woman before there are enough to go around, it just can't happen.

John, please, I really like you, you make me feel so safe, would you at least consider it?

It's a rule, it's non negotiable, you will just have to wait, women are our weak spot right now,only two of you on five of us, if I claimed you as my own other men

would become jealous, that would not bode well for group cohesion.

I understand, said Jessica, I am sorry I brought it up.

No need to be sorry, I like you too, but right now we need to think about what is best for the tribe.

Next morning William approached John.

John, I have some bad news, somebody is stealing the food, yesterday as I was getting some food for Brittany I noticed there was less then there should be, I counted all pieces tonight before we went to sleep, and this morning I counted again, John, three pieces of meat and several pieces of fruit were missing, before any of us ate, one of us is a thief.

Thank you for bringing this up, it has to be one of us, none could sneak past the guard, I don't think it was one of the girls, Brittany only joined us yesterday and I could vouch that Jessica did not do it, besides, girls don't keep guard, it had to be one of the men. Will, if one of us is bribing the girls out there for sexual favors we have a real problem on our hands.

What do you suggest we do?

It will not be easy, I will have to be awake tonight, and catch the thief in the act.

That evening John moved his bed a bit away from the fire, he told everyone it was to hot for him, but in reality he was placing it in position where he could keep an eye on the food.

It was late at night when he saw someone moving towards the food, suddenly the fire fell on the man's face, it was Michael.

Michael took down two pieces of meat and a few pieces of fruit, then he exited the longhouse.

Discreetly John followed Michael to the small clearing, Ursula and two other women, dark haired twins were waiting him there.

Hiding in the grass John eavesdropped on them.

We need more food, said Ursula, we can't survive on scraps.

I am bringing as much as i can, they are already suspicious as it is.

Don't you care, we will starve to death out here, don't yu give a damn about that?

I do, ill try to get more but it will not be easy.

See that you do.

John backtracked quickly to the camp and woke everybody up, when Michael entered the longhouse he did not saw anybody there, then suddenly everybody entered behind him.

Where have you been Michael? Asked John.

Oh just a midnight stroll, nothing important.

Shouldn't you have been watching the fire?

Well i stroked the fire just before i left, i guessed it will not go out in a few minutes i'm gone.

Stop lying Michael, i know you have been smuggling the food to the women, i followed you earlier, i saw and heard everything. Why did you do it Michael, what did they offer you?

Nothing, they did not offer me anything, i just could not stand the thought of them starving out there.

You betrayed this tribe Michael, you betrayed me, you went against my orders, by all rights i should exile you, but i can't spare to loose anyone, so i will obverlook this, only this one time, you are forgiven, you can stay, but it will take a long time for you to regain the trust you have broken, we will be watching you Michael, know that.

Two days after John caught Michael the twins finally showed up on in the camp, shivering from malnutrition and clearly white they asked to be admitted.

John did not bother with ceremony this time around, he just told Mark and Adam to lead the girls inside and take care of them, it turned out the girls were called Amy and Gina, they were barely able to stand by the time they got into the longhouse, apparently Ursula was taking most of the food Michael brought them, leaving the twins with very little.

You think they will be Ok? Asked Jessica, they seemed very sickly.

A few days rest and regular meals will get them back on there feet in no time, they will be fine, just in case we will not give them anything exerting to do for awhile, and i will tell Adam and Mark to be by there side when they are not otherwise engaged.

Three more days have passed and there was still no sign of Ursula, John actually got somewhat worried that something may have happened to her but he could not show it.

Then Jessica approached him.

John, i am worried about Ursula, there has been five days already.

I can't coerce anyone to accept my terms, Ursula will have to come of her own free will.

I know, but if you would just let me talk to her i think i can get her to relent, please.

All right, if you want to try i will not stand in your way, go out and find her, just remember where your loyalties lie.

Jessica went into the jungle, she searched the place where women used to sleep but Ursula was not there.

Then she heard something, soft moaning, she followed the sound to a large cici tree, Ursula was laying below.

Ursula, said Jessica, did you try to climb that tree yourself?

Yes, she said with a pained voice, i did, i was so hungry, i had to get something to eat.

Ursula, your leg is broken, how long have you been here?

Two days, said Ursula.

I need to get help, just stay there.

I don't need help, not from the men, i will not serve them, never.

Look, it ain't that bad, at first i was afraid too but there are warm beds and regular meals, and the sense of safety and community is like nothing i felt before.

I won't relent, i just can't.

Jessica came closer and put her hand on Ursula's shoulder.

Ursula, just let it go.

There was a moment of silence between the two women.

Then suddenly Ursula started crying, she was crying like a baby on Jessica's shoulder.

I am sorry i was so mean to you, please help me, i don't want to die out here, will the guys still take me, even after all i did?

I am sure they will, i know they will, don't move, i will get some help.

A few minutes later Jessica returned with Adam and Mark, they were carrying a makeshift stretcher. They put the stretcher on the ground by Ursula's side,they gently picked her up and lowered her on the stretcher, then carried her back to the camp.

John was waiting for them, he ordered them to take her inside and lower her on one of the vacant beds.

John, William, Adam and Mark gathered around the bed ursula was laying on.

Ursula, listen to me, i need to set your bone, it will hurt a lot but it has to be done if you are to ever walk properly again. This guys will help hold you down, you need to be as still as possible.

He handed her a piece of cloth.

Put this in your mouth and bite on it, it is so you don't break your teeth.

Adam, Mark and Will took p position on either sides of the bed, they grabbed Ursula by hands and one healthy leg and pressed down. John felt along her leg until he found the place where it snapped, then he firmly grabbed hold of it just below.

Ok, Ursula ready, now!

He pulled strongly on ger leg, dragging it away from her body, she was screaming in the rag and kicking about but the guys kept her firmly in place, finally it was done and other women brought out four straight pieces of wood and some leather belts, they immobilized Ursula's leg as best as they can and lowered it on the bed.

John took some food from the stores and gave it to Ursula.

I hope you appreciate the act of kindness we gave you, from the start you were trying to undermine this community, don't make me regret my charity.

I swear, i am so grateful you allowed me to come back, i was a fool to think i could live here on my own, thank you so much.

Welcome home Ursula.

Next day everybody went about there business, ursula was laying on her bed alone, everybody had obligations elsewhere, then Michael entered the longhouse, it was his turn to watch the fire and replace charcoal in the water filter.

Michael, said Ursula, could you come over here and talk to me for a little while?

Sure,as soon as i replace this charcoal.

He went about the task at hand and then sat by Ursula's bed.

Look, Said Ursula, i know you got into trouble for smuggling food to us, and i want you to know that i really appreciate what you did, you may have done the wrong thing but you did it for all the right reasons.

Thank you Ursula, say, what were you doing trying to climb that tree anyway?

Well i taught if Adam and Mark could do it...

Adam and Mark don't just climb the tree like a pair of monkeys, they have a system in place to keep them safe, a set of ropes and pulleys that prevents them from falling. Adam is climbing first, he has a harness around his torso that is tied to the rope, the end of the rope is tossed over one of the branches and then tied to adjecent tree, every couple of meters Adam will stop and Mark will secure the rope again, if Adam slips he only falls a bit before he stays hanging from the rope, did you think Adam never slips?

I actually never taught about that, i just kinda assumed they just climbed the tree.

Look Ursula we are in a very dangerous situation here, we can't afford mistakes, if one of us gets wounded it affects the entire tribe, and it is dangerous as it is without us playing daredevils.

Ursula put her hand on Michaels leg, please tell me more, she said.

Well, after Adam has reached stronger branches he picks two and ties a rope ladder to them, that way they can come and go relatively safely, the ladder stays as long as there is still fruit to pick. Then he takes a basket with rope tied to it and fills it with fruit, he then lowers the basket down to Mark who takes the fruit out and puts it into bigger basket and so on, they do it till they have enough.

Ursula watched him as he talked, like she was mesmerized by his face, he put his hand on hers.

You know, she said, i still kinda feel like an outsider here, i am here and being taken care of and all but i can't shake the feeling i don't really belong.

Ursula, you belonged here from the start, John was just waiting for you to realize that, we are all in this together, we will not abandon you, there is not reason to be afraid.

THe two outcasts looked into each other's eyes, and found kinship in one another.

Next morning Jessica once again approached John.

John, i want to talk to you.

What is it?

I don't know if you noticed it but everybody else has started to pair up, Will is spending a lot of time with Brittany, the twins seem to have taken a fancy to Mark and Adam, even Ursula and Michael are getting really close. Only you are still distant, why?

You know what Jessica, you are absolutely right, i was distant and i apologize, tell you what, we need to go hunt some more meat, our stores are running low, when we get back you and i can spend some quality time together, that sounds good?

Ok, you promise you will not bail on me again?

I  promise.

John William and Michael were following a small set of boar tracks, it was late afternoon and they knew they had to find a boar soon or come back empty handed, suddenly there was a ruffle in the bushes andthe biggest boar they ever saw jumped in front of them, it seemed poised to attack. Men formed a semicircle around the boar and lifted there spears up, they were keeping the boar at a distance by poking it, then Will poked it just a bit to hard and the boar went into a frenzy, it charged John, he stepped aside just in the right moment and stabbed the boar in the side with his spear, however he missed all important things and the boar just kept charging, blind from pain she ran away to the woods, dragging surprised John who was still holding onto his spear along, in a moment they were both gone.

Remaining men returned to the camp.

Others were waiting for them.

Where is John, asked Jessica confused.

The boar dragged him away, it all happened so fast there was nothing we could do.

Jessica went completely white, she was obviously in shock.

I am now in command, exclaimed William, and i say we go look for him, he may be injured or bleeding out, we have to find him.

We can't search during the night, said Michael, we have to wait till sun comes up.

By then it may be too late, we have to go now.

Will be reasonable, i know John was your friend but you must think what is best for everyone.

Don't speak of him in past tense, he would go after you you know, he would go after each of us, we owe it to him to do the same.

John would do what is best for everybody, you know he would, just till sunrise, then we look for him.

At that moment bushes parted and John, battered and bruised but alive came out into the clearing, he was dragging dead boar behind him.

Gentlemen, he said, there is no need to argue, as you see i am alive and well.

But how? Asked William.

YOu know i always carry a knife with me, i just stabbed the boar in the neck with a knife.

Impossible, you were being dragged for a ride, it all happened too fast.

Before today i would have said it was impossible too, but at that moment everything seemed to slow down, i knew exactly what to do in an instant.

John dropped the boar in front of the tent and went towards the sea.

After she gathered herself up Jessica followed John to the shore, she found him completely naked and submerged into the water.

John, what are you doing?

This will help my wounds heal quicker, they are all surface cuts but in a situation like this even surface cuts can be life threatening, seawater will disinfect the wounds and encourage healing, i saw that before, ill be good as new in a few days.

That must sting like hell, getting salt on all those wounds at the same time, you are very brave.

It stung at first but now i don't really feel anything anymore.

John, for a moment there i thought i lost you, never do that to me again, ever.

She took of her clothes and went into the water by his side, their eyes met, he took her hand in his. There was no need for words, they kissed for the first time.

That night they made love under the starry night sky and fell asleep in each others embrace.They woke up in the late morning.

I guess we should go back to the camp, others must be wondering were we were all night.

They went back to the camp, nobody was asking any questions, but there were knowing looks everywhere.

Life settled into routine in the camp from that day, it took two more weeks before Ursula could stand on her leg, and another month before she could walk again. John finally managed to make a passable bowstring and every man made a set of archery equipment, they started training with it daily to be able to hunt with it, they also built a palisade around the camp to protect them from wild animals during the night. Life became good for the people in the camp.

Then one day they saw a great cloud of black smoke rising above the other island.

Adam and Mark were on the beach gathering Bananas that day, it was late afternoon when Mark arrived to the camp and asked to speak with John at once.

John was making arrows by the fire, Mark's tone of voice sounded so urgent that he dropped all he did and rushed out to meet him.

What is it, what is so urgent?

John, did you see that black smoke yesterday?

Yes, what of it?

Well apparently the guys on the other island burned down there longhouse.

What, how, and more importantly, how do you know that?

Because they are here, down at the beach, seeking audience.

John and mark made there way down to the beach, Four men and five women were there, soaking, charred and obviously distraught.

John approached the sad group.

What the hell happened over there, and where is Hector?

Well, started one of the men, we kinda sorta burned down our shelter.

How the hell did you do that?

Well, it may be best i start from the beginning, when women arrived to the camp they started demanding that leader be chosen by popular vote, Hector resisted that proposal but the women got two of the men on there side and they outvoted him, seven against three.

So, what happened next?

Hector said we could all starve to death as far as he was concerned, he was as mad as a hornet, and then he just went into the jungle and has not come back.

So how does this story end with you burning down your longhouse?

Well, with Hector gone girls outnumbered us, they used that numerical advantage to put one of there own in power, traditionally we agreed to hold elections every three days, as a token to tribal councils we were supposed to be holding. The trouble was that three days did nothing to change the ballance of power, girls had constant upper hand and they always placed one of their own in power.

Ok, and the fire?

I was getting to that, after a few elections Hannah got her turn, she decided meat was not getting dry fast enough, so she ordered us to throw more wood on the fire, we warned her it was dangerous but she was insistant she knows best, so we relented, and obviously the fire got so strong that the roof of the shelter caught flame, we tried to extinguish it but ever since women took power we always had just a bare minimum of everything at all times, including water, and then one of the women dropped a water container and spilled most of it, the rest was not enough to stop the fire and by the time we got more it was all over.

John took Adam and Mark with him and gathered everyone at the camp.

All right everyone listen up, until i return Will is in charge, give the drifters enough food to last them a day but don't let anyone in the camp until i come back, understood?

But where are you going? asked Will.

I am going to find Hector.

John made his way past the drifters and over the landbridge to the other island, he passed the remains of a ruined camp, there was not much left, just a few charred logs and a lot of ash, he went into the jungle.

He knew Hector would set up camp near the water source so he focused on streams, eventually he saw a small hut with some fish hanging outside.

He approached the hut and peeked inside, Hector was sharpening his spear with some sand.

Hector!

John, what are you doing here? I sent you to the other island.

I came for you, i need you to retake control of your tribe, they are clueless without you.

John i was kicked out, i don't care what happens to them, they wanted to play boss, they can have it.

Hector, they burned there longhouse, they are currently on my doorstep seeking refuge, i know you still care, come on, take back what is rightfully yours.

Even if i did want to take over again what makes you think they would want me back anyway?

Several things, for one men remember you as capable leader, also i am holding food and shelter and i will only grant them a respite if they do exactly as you say.

What makes you think they will not try to just take it by force?

Oh they will not, trust me, my men have bows.

Bows, but how, how did you make bowstrings?

I used boar guts.

Guts? That's brilliant, how did you get that idea?

I used to read Tarzan when i was a kid.

Hector looked him for a moment, then burst out laughing, then John started laughing too, they laughed and laughed.

I missed you old friend, said Hector.

I missed you too, come on, what do you say?

All right, but no more of this voting bullshit, i will not have my authority challenged again, this time we do things my way and we do it right.

You are reading my mind old friend.

The two chiefs made there way back to the beach and across the landbridge, they did not stop until they got to the refugees.

Once refugees saw Hector they were visibly embarrassed.

Oh, Hector, said one of them, how convenient you showed up.

He is here at my invitation, said John, now you all listen, you proven yourself completely incapable of survival, it is high time that you get a leader who actually knows what he is doing, so now you will all swear to him your allegiance and your obedience, am i clear?

Wait, said Hannah, you are not our boss.

No, Hector is, but i control the food supply, i have a longhouse and that means i make the rules, you will d what i say or i swear i will let you starve out here, look at yourself, you are truly a sad bunch, did not even save your weapons, how do you plan to feed yourself? Like it or not you need my help, and i will only provide my help if you do as i say.

What if we just take the food? Asked one of the men.

I would like to see that, you have no weapons and we have bows, and fortified position, you would not last five minutes. Like it or not i hold all the cards here.

Maybe we just not obey, said Hannah again.

You may, ask the women in my camp how well that worked for them.

Finally one of the men said, i will accept your terms, things were way better under Hector anyway, ever since we started voting things went downhill, Hector proved himself to be capable leader by example, not by words.

And saying that he kneeled in front of Hector and said, I swear my allegiance to you, my chieftain. i will follow your rule, on my honor.

Reluctantly, first the men, and then women one by one started to do the same, soon they all swore there allegiance to Hector.

All right, said John, Hector, i will let you and your tribe live in my longhouse and share our food until you rebuild your own, i suggest you build inside the palisade, there is enough space and we can share guard duty, you will need to sleep on the floor for a few nights till we can make beds for you but it will be warm and you will be protected from rain. Now first we need to gather a hunting party, ten more people will put a strain on our food supply and we need to get more meat, my men can show your men how to craft and use bows, this will make our expedition a lot safer.

I agree, said Hector, let's get to it.

From that day forward the two chieftains ruled the small camp in tandem, Hector had the knowledge and John had a charisma, they both recognized each other's strengths and often sought each other's advice, second tribe built their longhouse inside the palisade. The two tribes became more and more integrated to the point they became like a small enclave of people out in the wild.

In the spare time they built a large bonfire by the shore just in case they need to signal a passing ship, then one day when John was keeping guard he heard something, an unmistakable sound of diesel engine, he rushed to the beach and light the bonfire, in a few minutes he saw a large boat approach the shore.

Three men armed with AK-47s jumped off the ship.

The rest of the enclave gathered around John in the meantime they wanted to know what was going on.

One of the men stepped forward.

Are you John?

Yes i am, you have come to rescue us?

Not exactly, in fact we need your help. In your absence the civilization has collapsed, there was a nuclear war, we come from the city of New Polis, that was build around what survived of New York. New Polis is ruled by the provisional government, it is weak and corrupt, they are hoarding resources for themselves and all the while armed gangs roam the streets.

But what could my humble community offer you?

We want you to lead us.

John was shocked. What?

Here is a situation, we are from the resistance movement, in exactly three days we will perform a coup and put you in charge of the New Polis?

Why did you choose me of all people? In fact how did you even know we were here anyway?

In the beginning months the provisional government managed to reactivate some satelites, some of the cameras around the island are still working, they made a tv program in an effort to pacify the population, much of which was made up of you, since there was not much else to show. This backfired later.

So you knew we were here all this time, and nobody came for us?

We were not sure where you were exactly, it took rebel HQ months to extrapolate your situation from the footage we received.

So why did this rebels choose me to lead the New Polis, surely you have plenty of capable people in your ranks.

You misunderstood sir, the rebellion did not choose you, the rebellion sprung up around you, the entire movement was about bringing you to power in the first place. You see when your enclave was brodcasted on TV many people saw something in you, your work, the way you dealt with problems, it gave people hope, where before there was none. We believe that New Polis needs a new king of leader, one harsh but fair, if we are to rebuild what was lost. The way you governed this island, we think your way may just be what we need, every member of the resistance is willing to lay down there life for you sir.

And saying that the three men dropped to one knee and swore there allegiance to John.

John turned to Hector, old friend, i always relied on your wisdom, what say you, do you think it can be done?

John, i don't know, ruling an entire city is a lot different from ruling a small tribe, but i know this people need you,and they went to great lengths to get to you, you can't just abandon them.

We will need time to finish up here, and pack our things, as well as say our farewells to this place, it became our home.

The tribe gathered at the enclave, everyone packed as much of there things as they could carry, most of it would be of no use in New Polis but it had sentimental value to them.

What will become of the longhouse, what will become of the enclave? Asked Jessica.

It will decay over time, unfortunately.

Do we really have to leave John, this is our home.

Jessica, Hector is right, i can't just abandon those people, not after what they went trough to get to us.

YOu owe them nothing John, they never asked you what you want.

It is not about what we want, Jessica, it is about what needs to be done, i was always governed by this principle, and i can't take an exception for myself.

The tribe Gathered at the beach in the early morning, they boarded the ship. As John looked back at the island that was his home for so long a small, barely noticeable tear began forming in the corner of his eye.


© Copyright 2020 Anonymous 27. All rights reserved.

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