Blackout Chapter 3

Stepping out of the hotel and back in the bus, the streets were (as before) lifeless, leaving my weathered soul without even mild comfort.

I thought of the thousands who lost their one and only life here (if you believe in the afterlife), and the very image of this stole mine second to last hope, for my last was that I had survived this tragic travesty.

It all heavily overwhelmed me with emotion to the point the only thing I could do was let tears.

Darkness steadily conquered my fleeting want, that someone, even just one man or woman, even if a criminal, even if a felon had lived though bombarded with fire and falling.

After about a half a day drive I shouted “Stop I spot!” for a man lied crushed under a pile of rubble, yet (unlike too many I had seen in the same or similar state) his free arm (for the other was lodged under the concrete stones holding him terribly in this terrible cage) was twitching slightly from pain.

Now me, Richie and his uncle grouped together to unlock him from his prison, stone after stone until we could dis join him from his tomb.

Now once liberated and on the road, he slept. I only left again with my lonely thoughts, I wept the more.

Hours were spent transitioning from urbs to suburbs, and from day to night, yet the survivor man and my depression were both unaffected.

Do to my shaken morale, the weakness of Henry and Grace (and despite the youth of Richie), Rich’s uncle spoke up (which was seldom with him) saying “It’s time we rest, that house will do.” he pointed Henry (the driver) to a white house with a red roof, and so we all rested there for the night.


Blackout Chapter 2

A long ride in a bus is hard (with complaints about bladders and cramped spaces, hunger and thirst), but a long ride in a abandoned city, your city, that’s nearly impossible.

Henry Arthur (the man who took the hit earlier, had introduced himself) suggested (for lack of better words) we stop to rest for the night.

Richie (short for Richard) Williams agreed to this adding that the hotel on a near street where his uncle lives, would be good for pillows and blankets “So” he reasoned with us all “we could hit two birds with one stone, be my uncle’s getaway car while collecting supplies.” It seemed a logically sound plan, yet I had to ask anyway “Is he wealthy? I don’t see how else he could afford to live in a place like that.” his response was “Trust me he’s not rich, he’s just staying there for some special reason.” and with that we continued.

Now after about another half an hour we finally reached the building. Though we started off at down it was now the blackest of black surrounding us.

The young lady whom did ride with me twice now, Grace Harding was also silent and asleep during most of both trips. For this Richard stayed back a while longer to wake her up and see her off, saying to the rest of the group “It’s the forty fifth floor”.

Then I and Henry noticed upon entry of the red carpet floored lobby, that it’s lights were not on, no not them or the air conditioning, the refrigerating, the non battery powered clocks, or ceiling fans and also not the elevators, so I knew my will soon ache.

Step step, breathe I heard going up the steep stairwell, step step, breathe breathe I heard going higher and higher. The further I went the more I heard, step step, breathe breathe. As I go higher it changes it’s darkly tune to step step, breathe weave, then it grew worse, step step, weave weave.

At this point I stopped gasping so I could speak to Henry “Go further, I need to rest.” instead he stayed with me sitting, I am not sure if he was acting to comfort a weary worn old man, but he seemed as tired has I was.

Now after a time the young Richie and Grace appeared from the level below, and then lead the old (me and Henry) up.

We climbed three more floors until finally exiting this steel ascending steps.

Going down the long hallway for a short time, we stopped at the room. Entry of the room allowed me to see a dirty man about the same age as mine, he sat with little expression in a steel chair by a window. Richie swiftly began packing non perishables (can food, bottled water etc) and clothes. Now out of curiosity I prodded this older man with a question “What is your name sir?” to answer he spoke in a emery voice “Gary, my name is Gary.” the scar he carried, his voice and this unmatched name left a cold silence. Luckily the young boy Richie didn’t search about to long before he called to everyone to go has he left through the exit.

Blackout Chapter 1

The sun hung on high, in the noon on a humid day in May. As the sweat dropped from my head and fell through the steamy air, with a plane flying far above my hat, above the city high risers, yet some ways below the clouds. For these were not (as I was to discover) average commercial flights, no, instead these were soaring roaring bomber jets, armed and ready to fire. One minute I was walking through the crowded Manhattan streets, the next I was being crushed underneath a raving rowdy rampaging crowd.

After about twenty seconds (which felt like forty hours), the terrible trampling ended and so did the world as I knew it. While I staggered to my feet I began to look about me, all the buildings still stood but vacant, all the road insight still intact, but ghostly empty. All this happened as I still heard the muffled bangs of a thousand children orphaned, of a thousand spouses widowed, of a thousand parents childless.

It all was overwhelming, yet I could not give a tear. No instead I simply stood there, in the street feeling hopeless, without hope.

Now in this moment alone in shock, a taxi swerved onto the void street. With the pop of the door a agitated voice spoke “Get in! We gotta go!” not in the gentlest way to do one of the kindest things possible. When I stepped in, I noticed the cab held a passenger (or hopefully survivor) I though good of this, because it would be good to have the numbers if I wish to safely live through this drastic attack. Now my hope began to flicker, maybe just maybe if we can swiftly drive away from this nasty nightmare we will survive.

After a hour or two I began to leave my state of shock and notice the surroundings with more detail beyond the basics. For I sensed I sat next to the passenger (I mentioned before), she was much younger than I (about in her twenties), a beautiful woman with a heavy jacket on. She slept, leaning on her door, this child seemed unaffected by the swerving of the car as it moved through endless streets. Now these streets were void of movement, yet littered with abandoned cars, trucks and buses. Oh the pain I felt when I remembered my legs, it appears I took more of a stomping earlier then I realized. This discomfort became visible to the driver, whom was moved to toss back a bottle saying “Take them, they’re for the pain.” once taken, I went peacefully to sleep.

Some unknown time passed before I awoke in a cool room of concrete. On my left lied a wall with a bed lying against the bottom of it, this was one of many beds which head’s all were placed against the wall behind me, each of these having only enough space between each for a person to comfortably stand in the midst.

On the right was a metal door, halfway open. This door was bringing in a cold draft, so I went to close it, but when I reached the doorway I heard voices on the other side.

One was a masculine (though not excessively) voice in a angry tone, another male voice that sounded much younger, has one from a teenager, and lastly a feminine voice that seemed in distress and on the verge of weeping. I stepped in the room to get a better understanding of the situation, then I saw the younger hit the older, throwing his hand like a base ball pitcher looking to strike this verbal batter out, this met the elder man’s jaw with strong force. I (obviously) ran to break up this fight, only to be goodly surprised by the event of the victim of the strike calmly apologizing to the young woman. As my head turned to this miss I noticed she was the very passenger I sat next, so I felt further compelled (beyond her sadness only) to comfort her with a hug and kind words.

Now after she became calm, I began to query saying “Where are we? Does any know?” and one answered saying “It is a schoolhouse’s public bomb shelter, it was built in the fifties.” then another added “Johnny says it’s the safest place in the city”. I looked around me and saw the room filled with crates, one said oats, another peas, and another bottled water. With this I asked “If we’re in a school, where are the children?” one answered “Johnny said he would try to find them and bring them here, and the teachers.” and after this I felt obliged to question the importance of this man asking “Who is Johnny and why is ever word he utters law?” then the older man answered “They think he has all authority because he is a corporal of the national guard.” I replied “Well I suppose they are right.” and after that we finished speaking.

Now after several days of waiting on the corporal’s return we all agreed one with another, that he had been away too long and thus wasn’t returning, and that we should we all should leave the city together before food and water runs out. We packed has much as we could carry and left the exit door (of the bunker) with a note in case the soldier returned, telling him we left town.