Once all of us were inside, we gathered around the table. We chowed down on the food my mother had prepared for us while Jakecub, Damien, my dad, and the boy went into a different room to talk. I assumed they were talking about the boys actions and why he attacked me. I wouldn't doubt it if he was high on something, I just hoped he wasn't that stupid to take the drug that turns you into one of those things
  During our fight, the guy scratched me pretty hard, enough to make me bleed. It stung like a motherfucker too. Not to mention, I should've probably cleaned it up considering the dude doesn't look exactly clean. Personally, I wouldn't be surprised if he was homeless. He's covered in dirt and mud, plus, he has marks all over his legs. Like he's been bit by bugs or something... Larger. Something that could kill him or turn him. But he had enough dirt on him that I'm sure it masked his disgusting scent. 
  Dad came to the table and began to fill us in on the information. "This boy is homeless and he has been running for days now trying to get away from those flesh eating creatures. I need to go inform my officers on the locations the boy has spotted them at and find out what’s going on and if we can close the breach.
  Aside from that, this young man who scared Liz, came to our house in hopes of some shelter and food. Which I don't blame him. Between the weather and those creatures it would make nearly anyone want to do whatever possible to get shelter. Unfortunately he went about it all the wrong way. Jakecub turned him down. So he thought it'd be funny to scare Liz until he realized she had a weapon. He was laughing because he wanted Jakecub to get upset and that's exactly what he got, but now he is going to help us.
  While he was out there, he got to learn a lot about the underground area and the outside in's and out's in general. So, we began discussing some underground routes just in case anything destructive happens that requires an immediate evacuation. His knowledge will allow us to have a safe and effecient getaway. Which is exactly the type of person we need in a situation like this... Unfortunately. Therefore, he will wisely bless us with his delightful company. To make this situation lighter on everyone, he will be joining me for work every day until decided otherwise. However, if he tries anything, please let me know so that I can assess this situation accordingly. I may want his help, but I will not ignore my family for it.
" He stopped talking and took his plate of food and started eating it. Everyone stared at him with this blank expression on their faces.  
"That’s great, someone tries killing me and we end up keeping them. I feel the love, we might as well let one of those creatures come right into the house then too. Tthey can sleep in our beds, eat our food, wear our clothes and we can call them family. Those things will surely try and kill me too won’t they? In fact, they will try to kill all of us, just like this guy might while we're sleeping! But it doesn't matter right? I hope you’re happy about the decision you made, and I hope it blows up in your face too! it’s not like this house is big enough to hold the universe. You shouldn't even be in it. But now we are going to continue to add more people to it? Mom, we already got forced to add five people here, can't you say no? Or did 'dad' become the man in charge." I said.
"Hey! Be respectful! You don't have to like it, but you do have to accept it. If you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all. Everything has been resolved. I know you feel hurt and scared, but your father has spoken. What he says goes. We aren't the ones in the military, he is okay, he knows best." My mom struggled to say.
"Excuse me? I thought you were in charge? Not some guy we barely know? And for two, when have you ever, and I mean ever thought the military knew what they were doing? You're a hyprocrite."
"Liz, calm down. You’re overreacting." Dad said.
"I'm overreacting? I almost got killed and nobody cares!"
"Everyone cares honey. Everyone loves you. What do you want honey? An apology from him?" My mom said.
"I notice you, and your brothers obviously know you're here too. I see them pick on you all the time. People do see and pay attention to you." Jaried said.
"Then why don't you stop them instead of being useless and letting them hurt me. My brothers hate me. Just like you do."
"I have my own shit to deal with Liz, just like everybody else.  I killed my dad for Chris Sakes! Give me a break. I'm not perfect."
"Yeah, you're right, you're a psychopath." 
"Elizabeth! That's enough." My mother said as the whole house began to rumble in yelling.
  Yelling like this went on for quit awhile, faces became red, and no one was letting up yet. Everybody wanted the last word that even my baby siblings were babbling amongst themselves in their own argument. Justin ended up throwing his baby food and it landed on Aaroons face. Everyone stopped what they were yelling about and started laughing at Aaroon as he wiped the gunk off of his face and laughed along. Now that everyone was calm, or at least calmer than they were five seconds ago, the house became silent. Only the sounds of people clearing their throat was heard.
"Hey now! we don't hate you, we are just protecting you. Toughening you up. You're our baby sister, remember that." Damien said.
"I don't need protecting, if I did, I wouldn't of got Jaried by myself across town. Him and his siblings are out of that restaurant because of me. No one else did that but me." I snapped.
"What restaurant?" Mom interrupted.
"Nothing, it doesn't matter." I said.
"It's the runned down restaurant out by Nowhere." Jaried informed
"That’s miles away! how did you get out there?"
"There's a tunnel, Liz and I take to get there." Jaried said.
"I want to know right away where that tunnel is." Dad said.
"Well, if I remember correctly, it’s by the apartments over on Riverside. Isn’t it?" My attacker said.
"No one asked you dip-shit. And why did you say anything Jaried?" I said.
"You called me a psychopath." He stated.
"Okay, that’s enough Elizabeth. You don’t get to be a brat right now, in fact, you’re grounded. I think for punishment, you should go to work with your dad. See what those things are really made of.” My mom said, as I was practically laughing in my head. I’m the only one in this family who does remember what those things are capable of. Mom has no clue.
“Actually, I would think that it’d be beneficial if all of us went into the Wasteland to do some target practice. You guys need to know how to take care of yourselves. Best way to learn is to be in the action. Plus, it lightens the work for us soldiers. Of course though, this is only exclusive to you guys. Just in case a straggler gets in and nobody notices and it just happens to come your way. I’m hoping my boys sign up for the military and join their ol’ man in service anyway.” He said, looking to Damien and Jakecub.
“What about Elizabeth? She needs to do something as punishment.”
“I can’t take her, not today. I have to much to handle with today. I have to take that boy with me. Plus, I can’t have kids running around base. They’re either there for a reason or they stay home. It’s not a punishment. She has no reason to be there.” 
“Nice excuse.” My mother scowled. 
"Well, I think it’s time to go to work. But honey, that tunnel would be very important to our survival..." Dad said, "I'll be home for lunch tomorrow, come on son, we need to get some work done. Kill some creatures, talk to the elders, reassuring people's safety inside these walls, all that good stuff to keep you busy." Dad said with his mouth full, walking out the door.
“Wait, James!” My mom said.
“Haven’t we heard about the creatures at one time or another awhile ago? I can vaguely remember someone talking about them.”
“I don’t know, but wouldn’t everyone else remember something about them too?”
“I remember something, so does Damien.” I replied.
“Um, may I ask what that is.” My father said, slightly raising his voice in annoyance.
“It’s all in my diary and in Damien's, I guess when whoever swiped our memory, or tried at least, with whatever drug, they forgot to grab our journals. Genius move right? My journal or diary or whatever is mainly all about the creatures and how to kill them and building the wall for like two years. Damien’s is about the detail of them and how they interact with things. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you, I thought that it might be dangerous having people know. Or you might get mad like you are now.”
“I am so unbelievably pissed right now Elizabeth! I can’t believe you would do something like that, I want everything now! I want your journals, your phone, everything!” My father screamed on the top of his lungs.
But before he could finish yelling at me, my mom interrupted him. “Oh yeah, I remember now. Everyone was constantly exhausted from building the wall and people were in and out of hospitals due to concrete burns, gunshot wounds, heat exhaustion, dehydration, pneumonia, bites, broken legs and arms, ribs and necks and everything else. I thought building the wall would never end. On top of constantly being attacked by creatures who wanted to eat your flesh. Our bullets were getting low towards the end, we had a line of people in front of us with melee weapons attacking them. God, we must of killed a good 70,000 people each.
  I even remember this one old lady distinctively while I was working one morning. Her hair was an absolute mess and her teeth were brown with a slight blood stain. Her clothes were months old and had the markings of guts smeared onto it. She also looked like she had been ate by the very thing she had become. Maggots were chewing on her face, feasting on her eyeballs, and the holes in her clothes showed her skinny body. She limped and I could tell she was searching for something or someone. She had such sad eyes. I use to have dreams about her. Unfortunately, no matter how intriguing she was, I had to kill her. I stabbed her right in the head too. Maggots flew out of her head and onto me. I knew not to pull my gun unless I absolutely had to.”
“I can’t believe you two right now! I have to leave!” James said, storming off.   
“Well, today has been eventful. I think I will go to my room, maybe I’ll go to sleep." I said walking away from the table.
"Excuse me? No you're not, we need to make up a plan and get things into backpacks just in case we have to go in a hurry, and most of all, we need better cars. We need to be prepared for the worst and I need everyone’s help.
"But I want to go to my room and I don’t think James wants us leaving the house."
“I don’t care what he wants. You’re my kid. Not his, you’ll do as I say.”
“Sure doesn’t seem that way. He bosses you around.”
"Look, the only people leaving this house is you, Jaried, Aaroon, and Jakecub. I didn’t think you wanted to be cooped up inside all day anyway. Shouldn’t you be happy I’m letting you go outside? I need you guys, and you’re older than all the rest. Damien is probably still weak and in pain from the accident that had taken place, so I won’t ask much of him, but as for the rest of you, you have a lot to do."
"Well I can get you any car you want. Just tell me where it's at and it'll be yours." Jakecub said, smiling from ear to ear.
"Well, maybe we should wait on the cars since the law is still active, a few weeks I suggest, but we need to build a fence, put things into backpacks and into cars just in case and have reinforcements, extra water, tents, everything, especially weapons."
"At my work I can get you all the supplies needed for the strongest fence, they moved me to a place down here and it's much better. You name it, I'll get the stuff and start building it mom. Metal fence, picket fence, wooden fence, double thick wooden fence, even a concrete wall." Damien said.
"Honey, you should be resting, someone will be coming by later to fix you up, aren’t you feeling weak? You need to drink lots of water and eat some food. The most I am going to let you do is help me around the house and walk with your siblings. For now let's wait until a few days later, but thank you Damien if anything. a wooden fence would do, but after awhile we would need a concrete wall doubled by a security metal fence or vice versa. Or something along those lines.
  Lizzy you can start looking up online the best get-away backpacks or what the best travel packs are and things. Jaried, you can go get a huge supply of water and Jakecub, blankets would be nice to have for the more winter like seasons and finding ways to improve home life, lots of canned food as well. I never imagined something like this would happen. No one has had to rely on the land and books for knowledge since 2035. We have a lot of learning to do. Does 1990’s books even exist now?"
“I’m fine,” Damien said getting ignored and annoyed for being seen as useless.
"Oh, right, leave me with the easy jobs. That’s alright, just get one or two pairs of clothes get a melee weapon and a long range weapon like a gun and extra ammo of course, and get matches or lighters, a dozen or so would do, one personal item and food with water and a medical kit, also a tent and thermal sleeping bag, boom your travel pack." I said with a smile
"And how do you know all of this? Smart ass." my mom said suspiciously
"I do my research from time to time… I love researching these types of things. I surely was born in the wrong timeline. I wonder frequently what it’d be like to live in the 20’s. Plus the best traveling packs are the ones you make yourself, ones that you feel you’ll need to survive, ones that are best for where you live at. I also did some research on plants. We have little plant life here so it's easy to know all about every single one of them. Did you know you can make tea out of our pine trees? Well, out of the pine needles more precisely.
  As well as that after a mother fish gives birth, a week later she dies and her flesh begins to rot. There is so much more out there that is unknown. Maybe hopefully when all of these buildings get taken down, and this country gets to start all nice and new, the old plant life will rise once again and artifical plants won't exist as much." I said, "However, you can have all the kids make the survival packs. It beats keeping them cooped up in the room 24/7. Sure would get them done faster as well, and if they don't get done faster well then least it's occupying the kids for a few hours so they aren't running around the house screaming. As for me? I can walk down to the store and get shovels and gardening tools because we will need a place to store food just in case this does become our permanent place to stay."
  Everyone looked at me in amazement, mom even had her mouth open in curiosity. She tried saying many things but all she could get out was ‘how?’ ‘what?’ ‘why?’ But anything past that she couldn’t manage to say. I didn’t really see it as anything amazing. I just like knowledge, especially knowledge that is nonexistent now.
"Well, I guess that could work. But you and Jaried will need to buy more supplies for those survival packs, waterproof matches, extra clothes and such. Jakecub can go down to the weapons shop and get some weapons for us later on tonight, and this one I will allow for a criminal action to take place. I don't want to spend eight billion dollars, nor do I have it just laying around and about. So, everyone get to work and when you're father comes home, we can discuss what to do to make an actual plan. Or any way to increase our chances, gain weapons, upgrade the home, or anything else. I’m sorry guys that I’m a bit… Obsessed with this… I just want to live, I want my children to live..."
"Don’t worry about it, we all appreciate your concerns. What are you going to do?" I asked.
"Well, I am going to clean the house and do all the chores you guys aren't going to do today because you guys have more important jobs to do. I will also be here babysitting the kids, and if any of you need me, hopefully not at all one time, I’ll be here. But you kids are smarter at this stuff than me, Liz has already proved that.
  Oh, by the way, we need more space in this house for all the new people that are showing up at our house. We only have so many rooms and only two of those rooms only have one person in it. So unless people want to be paired up with more than one person…” She grunts, looking at me “Then I suggest all of you work something out. Your father and I took the master bedroom with the twins and the rest of the rooms have three children in one and two in the other, then of course Damien and Jakecub are together, which then leaves you and Jaried separate rooms with no one else. But, if Spike is going to be here, then we need room for him. Of course he can room with Jaried, but Jaried already has the closet. But, it's up to you all to figure out.
  This seems more like a charity house than anything. Maybe at some point half the town will come down here to survive with us? That would be incredible wouldn’t it? Less room the more likely people will get into fights and such, doesn’t that sound great? But see what you can do about that please, everyone? Maybe he can sleep in the garage?"
"No problem, by the way that's a good idea, but don’t you think we should wait awhile before we do anything now? I mean, Jaried and I can look around to build huts or whatever in the back, and Jakecub can go get weapons, but then the authorities will be on both our asses. Especially since you implied we steal all of this. I mean, I understand that there will be a lot of crimes the closer people realize that it's the end of the world, a ton of people will die, and much more but why do we have to be the ones to start it, risk our lives, and people know we have this amazing shelter? Isn’t that taking a huge risk?”
“Just go do it, I’m sure you’re father will go take care of that if anyone were to go and get into any trouble that I’d advise you not to get into. But, your children, teenagers, almost adults, I don’t see why or how you guys could possibly get into any trouble unless you guys were completely reckless with what you were doing. After all, when I was a teenager, there is a lot of stories that I could tell you about. I got into all kinds of trouble, I’m surprised my mom didn’t have a heart attack and die… Sooner...”
“Alright. Not to be rude, but none of us wants to hear your stories and see you cry about the grandma we never got to meet, nor our grandpa.”
“I love you. Don’t forget about getting medicine. That is one of the most important things for survival. Especially when it comes to Jakecubs... Be safe.” My mom said as we repeated the same ‘I love you too’ back to her. Jaried was the only one who didn’t say it back, he just turned and waved with a smile as we walked away.
  Jaried and I walked down to the garden store while Jakecub walked down to Walmart and looked for things that would help create more room for the new people who are staying with us. When Jaried and I got to the garden shop I saw something that might help us, it was a tractor with a man on it. Jaried and I could use that to put all of the tools on there and have a fast get-away.
  Which is basically exactly what we ended up doing as well, I told Jaried that we will put everything in a pile and then when I gave him the signal he would get the guy off the tractor and get everything on it and get away. I walked into the store and grabbed a cart and started looking for some things that may be helpful. I know this wasn't on my list but tons of seeds seemed like a good thing to grab and two shovels and pickaxes, I also grabbed some soil and told Jaried to get wood planks just in case we needed them, which we would need them.
  Before we could get away a lady had asked us what we were doing with all of the items. I simply said we were making a huge garden and these would help it. Which was pretty much and basically the truth despite the incubator as well. After having said that, I pretty much walked away without another word and without paying. She started yelling nasty, dirty words toward me, telling me I needed to pay for this and I was a deranged child. Which only made me get out of there faster as I was yelling to Jaried to get ready. He jumped the guy and jumped onto the tractor racing my way, when he did get to me we both rushed to get this stuff on the tractor and then we made our way home with about six very angry people running after us.
  The ride to freedom was crazy, we nearly lost everything and fell under it too. The tractor was not a very good vehicle to go around corners fast in, or go fast at all in, but it beat walking no doubt. We had random people screaming at us to be careful with what we were doing but didn’t care to stop us.
  There was no way I was going to get caught or get in trouble and I vowed for that. It was a sight to see when I saw the lady still running after us though, her boobs jiggled and her skirt flew up, her panties were very noticeable. But she still ran as if her life depended on it. Unfortunately, she wasn’t looking both ways before crossing the street, I mean, neither were we. A truck was speeding down the road and smashed into her. I saw her head explode on impact as the rest of her body proceeded to collide into the truck.
  My stomach instantly turned as I stood on the side of the tractor trying to not throw up anything that had been in my stomach. On the upside, now everyone is more interested in her death than our stealing. Not to mention, now there was screaming from kids and old people, so there was lots of distraction. I wanted to make sure the children were alright, but sadly I couldn't. Hopeful the police get there in time to arresting the trucker. Don’t get me wrong, secretly I will mourn her death, and the sight of what happened will probably haunt me in my dreams… But she helped us, and if we were going just a little bit slower, that could've been us. At least she won’t turn into one of those mad eating human like things. Her brains were completely destroyed, as far as I saw, that's the only part keeping them alive.
  It didn’t take long for us to get home after that episode, and when we did get home it was a race against time to get all the supplies in hiding and the tractor to vanish. You should’ve seen how fast I jumped off that tractor and began unloading everything into the backyard. You'd think I was on Adderral.. At least, I felt quick anyways, could’ve been slow as day, but regardless, I felt speedy and I needed to be.
  I had Jaried take the tractor some place far away from where we were at. I think he took it to a nearby lake because when he got home he was a bit muddy and smelt gross. But I guess it doesn’t even really matter as long as the tractor is gone and he's safe.
  My mom however, didn't bother coming outside and asking us what we did but she did come out to helped get everything to the back of the house where I started digging a hole by the house near the garage and started making a garden for us all. Along with a small shed and some other things. The people around our house just stared at us in disgust and then watched me as I worked for what seemed like ages. It was repulsive to know that people wouldn't mind their own business and judged me for it. But I guess that was the peoples nature. If only they knew, or remembered anyway, what would their reaction be?
  It was hard, sweaty work, and I didn’t feel as if I needed an audience. Not to mention I nearly dreaded the fact that I volunteered to do this. But it was for our survival, I wanted to excel in this kind of world, a normal world, not this diseased one. But if I couldn't excel in a normal one, this diseased one needs to work. One way to excel is to be an important asset to everyone including my family. Otherwise, they just might honestly cut me out on being with them. Or I could die between the diseased. You’ve got to be the best to stay with the best. No one wants to drag around someone who puts them in danger all the time, and I don't think I'm physcially capable of being very strong.
  Not that they remember anything more about this survival than I did. No one did know anything about survival in years. No ones had to use it for generations, everythings just been easy for us for so long that we forgot what hard times were. All of us had to reteach ourselves how to survive. It's a skill valuable to everyone nowadays.  But none of that changes the fact that after they remember, I still don't think I will be capable enough to continue on with everybody else. I'm weak, so to make up for that, I have to learn some kind of new skills that would be useful to a team. 


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  • David Paris


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