It’s like the fucking twilight zone in Big Sur. There are survivors casually sipping coffee at small table sets and the general store has its door propped wide open, gleaming glass intact. There are no signs of looting or the apocalypse at all. Sunshine and chirping birds put the cherry on top of the eerie small town vibe.
For two hours, I’ve been watching from the bushes. Tracking the strolling couples and chatting neighbors like it’s a creepy play put on for my amusement. I just need to figure out when I want to join in the production.
Jim and I smell BBQ and she has left to investigate. Maybe con some treats, or get herself grilled. It could go either way.
I’m goin in, wish me luck.
I’m back from town, resting in the small cabin I slept in last night. Later, I’ll go explore the woods some more but for now, I’ll tell ya how my shopping excursion went.
The shop is all dark wood. Wood walls, floor, trim and shelves. A stringy looking man in jeans and a flannel called out “Howdy there, stranger!” enthusiastically from behind the counter. I gave a tip of my ballcap and no verbal answer. There was no need to give away my gender. I hadn’t worked on my manly voice yet. I browsed the store.
The shelves were stocked with odds and ends; some new, some used. They traded for different goods since obviously money was useful only for burning or bum wiping. I had some odds and ends to swap if something struck my fancy.
The bored shopkeeper tried to drum up a conversation again. “I’m Henry. You from far off? Got any news about the state of things out East. I only ask because we have some folk’s in town who are leaving soon to find family and thought you might he able to help. That’s what we do around here..” and that’s as far as I listened, he just kept blah, blah blabbing his mouth. I grunted a deep “No” to answer his multiple indepth questions.
I tossed the weight of some metal bearings in my hand. The slingshot lying next to the box of loads was handforged steel and thick rubber. Good sturdy weapon if I learned how to shoot it straight. It’d be silent too. I asked “What you want for this?” in my grunted tone. He stared at my face a minute too long and I made sure to study the weapon to hide my features. “Depends on what you got. I’ll give you a good deal since your new to town.”
Riiight, I thought. I offered up two, four packs of AA batteries. He sighed and jabbed his thumb up to say, more.
I growled a bit and pulled out a small bottle of slightly out of date antacids. They burned the back of my throat anyway. Henry hissed through his teeth and said, “Almost there.” I dug back in my bag and held up a ball made of rubberbands.
“Bingo!” He clapped his hands together once and smiled rediculiosly wide. It made me feel like I’d been cheated. Next time, I’d start smaller and haggle more.
I began to gather all the the steelshot along with the slingshot and he held out his hand to stop me. “Woah, woah, woah. The ammo’s extra.”
I gave him the full effect of my disgust with a sneer, and tossed down the weapon. As I gathered my payment back up to say our trade was off, he gave in. “All right, go on and take the ammo. Since your new and all, I did say I’d give you a deal.” I perked up seeing his smile had lost some of its glimmer.
I traded a noodle cup for a couple apples also, but I’m going to save them for desert. For now, I think I’ll practice with my slingshot and see if I can get good enough to kill a squirrel. Fresh meat would be heavenly.
Oh yes.. I almost forgot, when I was leaving the store I was chasing a steelshot I dropped and headbutted a very handsome man in the stomach. I was mortified, he was nice and apologized to me, even though it was in no way his fault. I attempted to hide my horrible blush and said an entirely too high pitched “Sorry!”. I ran away then, but I hope I didn’t just out myself.
Jim or maybe a plaguer is scratching at the door so I’ll write more tomorrow.
More to come……
A great blogging writer, Paul E. Bailey has created a sister story to this Apocalypse Diary. It’s written in a different style and in a different place but these stories share time and Zombie population. Please give this awesome story a read and continue to follow the characters adventures! Thank you.😊
Picture credit goes to http://www.hikinginbigsur.com