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Dystopia: The Dark Days
The continuing novel of the Dystopia Series, Book IV in the series
Destiny Walters, a strong woman who strives to keep the survivors alive and maintain a sense of community at the small farm. The gang attacks are growing in frequency and brutality, something must be done. Morgan hates Destiny and helps the gangs attack. Intrigue surrounds the event that brought about the end of the old world. Only a few know the truth, but there are those that would kill everyone to keep it a secret. The dark days of anarchy are soothed with the desire of mankind to continue to maintain their humanity. Learning to barter and stand in solidarity they defeat the leader of the largest gang and take their place among those that set up the emerging clan system of government.
The morning brought sadness to those at the farm as the realization of the loss of their friends sank in. Each facing the fact that all of it was real. The stories their friends brought off the road were even more than anyone imagined. Melinda shot and killed, still she lay as she had fallen. Her lifeless body in an unnatural position, strewn across the ground half way out of the trench, a pool of blood lay beside her head, where her still open eyes stared blankly into the group gathering around her. Loel approached, kneeling to pick her up to carry her to the barn. Looking at her, observing how she had fallen, he could see her gun still slung across her back. Saying to John, “She didn’t even fire the rifle.
Lynn and Amanda were also killed while trying to get the goats under cover. One of the goats was shot and lay dying in the pen. Janice came out from the barn, she was an elderly woman who would remind a person of Aunt Bee from that old show, barely recalled but for a town called Mayberry. Carrying the long butcher knife, she casually ended its life by reaching around the front of it, drawing the knife around its neck, she’d cut its throat. Looking up she could see Kimmie and Renee grimacing at her. She didn’t know them, they were Matt’s family from the north, but she could already feel she wasn’t going to like them.
Shaking her head, standing there, goats blood dripping from her hand and the knife. She glanced to them and said, “Would you rather I just let it suffer?”
The two looked at one another. Pointing her finger at her gaping mouth, Kimmie made a gagging sound. Half laughing, they turned and went back to the barn. Janice just scoffed and mumbled obscenities as she set to the task of hanging the goat for butchering.
Another busy day lay ahead, but this time it would involve the unpleasant task of digging graves. John, having called on Cameron and Frank, two of the members that were already at the farm for help. They somberly took on the task; while Laurie cleaned up the girls for burial as best she could. Washing them for a proper viewing. Sewing the canvas only to mid chest she said they were ready. Laid on the ground beside each grave to allow for the others to say goodbye. The scent of lavender could be detected when drawing near. Carefully combing their hair and adding more lavender, they were now ready. There were no flowers for their graves as they were very nearly perched on winter’s doorstep. The others came over to say goodbye. Some had tears others simply shock.
Sam came up to them and asked to talk to John. Nodding he handed the shovel over to Cameron and climbed up to talk to him.
Sam looked worried and said, “Did you notice all of our casualties were female?”
John nodded saying, “I did notice that. Do you think there is a reason?”
Sam replied, “I dunno, just seemed strange.”
John looked about thinking and said, “I think it is just statistics.”
Sam tilted his head in confusion saying, “Statistics?”
“Yea, there are more women and children than there are men.”
Sam’s brow furrowed, thoughtful he replied, “That’s true but I don’t think it’s the reason.”
“You have another thought?”
“Yes, yes I do.”
John waited a moment then said, “Well, let’s have it.”
Sam stammered, “Yea, right, sorry… I think that most of the women and children are not trained well enough.”
“Why do you say that?”
Sam looked down sadly saying, “I watched Melinda get hit.”
“I did and I think it is because she didn’t know proper procedures for times when under fire. She popped right out of the hole to take aim on a shooter instead of maintaining cover. They know how to shoot the gun, which we taught them for hunting. They are not trained in warfare. She wasn’t aware of her surroundings. I’m not sure they should be in the trench like that.”
John said, “You may have a point there, let’s address it at lunch. This changes things, we may need to rethink our defenses.”
Sam agreed and started to walk away when John called out to him, “Hey Sam.”
Sam turned and said, “Yea?”
John said, “I have a question for you.”
Sam said, “Whatcha need?”
John sighed as he replied, “It’s Matt… What do you think?”
Sam started walking back towards him and said, “Honestly? I don’t know what to think.”
He looked down shaking his head as he continued saying, “I’ve seen him run right into the line of fire, to save Dez, without regard for his own life. But on the other hand he kept pushing her to add him to the deed for this place. I don’t really know anymore.”
John nodded and said, “We’ve been friends for years and he won’t even talk to me.”
Sam replied, “This is a tough one and we are gonna have to see how it plays out. I do know from Tawny that Dez has a will, and everything belongs to Jeremy and Charleigh, with even a contingency clause that names Ariel in the event they can’t take possession if anything happens to her.”
John asked, “Do you think he was trying to get the land?”
Sam said, “I don’t know but there is more than just the land I guess. Tawny doesn’t, and never has trusted him. She says he is good with Dylan and stuff. But she also said she can’t put her finger on it, but feels like everything is a con game with him.”
John said, “Yea, Matt is always trying to finagle something. I just never thought he would stoop to this. I just don’t know what to think.”
Sam replied, “Well, he shot your ole’ lady there guy, I don’t think I would trust him much if I were you either.”
John said, “I know… we’ve been friends since middle school. I just don’t get it.”
“Hey, maybe it was just… just an accident.”
“I thought about that, but then why will he not discuss Morgan or anything? I feel like I don’t even know him.”
Sam nodded and shrugged. He turned to go, leaving John to get back to the grave digging.