Friday, February 17, 2012

Book Excerpt: Addy's Boom and the Blast Frontier

Book Excerpt: Addy's Boom and the Blast Frontier
Expected publish date: June 6th, 2012

Chapter 6: Lauren’s Discovery

With rain approaching, Lauren began looking around the wrecked diner store to try to find a better place to make her bed; the food rack with the plywood bed and bubble wrap lie directly under a hole in the ceiling, a two-foot long rip that would allow water in.  She lifted the food rack out of the mess on the floor; the cans of Spam, wet wipes, jars of pickles, bags of marshmallows, instant coffee, peanut butter, and as she was just noticing, one dead mouse.

She drug the rack nearer to the edges of the store.  Day five of her new life was coming to a close and she was not willing to spend her night trying to sleep in cold, dripping water.  She removed the debris from the rear-right corner of the store and wrestled the rack over piles of boxes of cereal and two-liter sodas and bags of flour that had turned to some kind of compound.  She reconstructed the bed in the corner, putting the piece of cracked plywood up on the tipped-over rack, followed by layers of bubble wrap and, this time, a blanket to cover with that she found on the curb, adjacent to the store.  She had hung it on the clothesline and it took a day and a half to dry and was still damp, but would be acceptably dry by bedtime.

She climbed up on it to rest, bringing a bottle of water and a pack of instant tea with her, along with a individually wrapped cupcakes and pecan rolls.  She looked, as she had done for most of her recent days, out the front doors, out at the crane and the car.  The water was almost gone.  The land looked like a desert with occasional indentations of where foundations had been.  She looked and she thought and she hoped somebody would come.  Anybody.  She reviewed in her mind the wave, what must have happened to her family, and what she would do if she could get out of this place.  It wouldn’t be long before she struck out in search of, what?  She didn’t care.  She knew she had to go find other people or life would be unbearable. 

This wasn’t life.  This was a prison designed by Mother Nature, used to punish the unsuspecting.  It was a prison for the body and the mind where free motion was severely reprimanded and the gullibility needed to believe everything would be okay was heckled and spat upon.  

Her heart ached with heaviness.  For the first time since the wave hit, she was starting to realize what she had lost, and besides her prior life, she had lost everything and everyone that mattered to her.  She sobbed.  She sobbed for two hours, crying so hard that her face ached and her throat burned and her eyes ran dry as her torso bobbed up and down like she was laughing.  It was mercilessly draining and painful, yet she felt better afterward.  She had to put what was gone behind her if she was going to make anything good happen with her spared life, and that evening she set out on a journey in her mind; a journey toward acceptance, toward purpose, and toward something more than survival, if she could just get out of this place.  As she fought to throw off her blanket of grief, she found sleep under her dried blanket of cotton and rayon as the rain pattered on the roof like pebbles on a rear fender and the drops of the ceiling leak ticked like a clock on the floor in the middle of the diner store.

In the morning, when she woke, it wasn’t to the normal nightmares or odd sounds.  It was to the sound of something alive.  It was to a quiet ,”heh, heh, heh…”

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