Last Chapter: Mikael was then pinned down and choked by the musclehead struggling to reach for the spear he dropped. Losing consciousness, he had a decision to make, live, or die. He remembered that he stored a knife in his boot if he was just able to reach… Got it, Mikael thought. He pulled his knife from his boot, gripped it tightly, and shoved it in his head, causing the man to go limp and onto the ground. Mikael got up, heaving and Carlos out of breath from that life-changing event.
“Holy fuck,” Carlos gasped and then puked.
Tuesday, November 6, 2018
Dusk - Apocalypse Month 2
“Ah!” Carlos winced as Tonya stitched up his wound.
“Stop flinching. It didn’t even hurt that bad.”
“How are you gonna tell me what hurts me?” Carlos groaned.
“So how did this happen again?” Ariel asked Mikael, giving him a wet rag.
“We were attacked by these strangers, there were three of them. It’s really bad out there, worse than I imagined. One got away, but the rest, they uh… we had to kill them.” Mikael winced. ‘There’s a word I never thought I had to say.’
“Yea, that was, um… I think I’m gonna puke again!” Carlos warned. Tonya quickly grabbed a bucket before he could puke all over the floor and put it on Carlos’s lap. The thick smell filled the room as Carlos couldn’t hold what was in his stomach anymore.
“I can’t even imagine having to kill another human,” Ariel sympathized. “But, I’m glad you guys are okay.”
“If it wasn’t for Lincoln’s training we probably would’ve been dead,” Mikael groaned. “I’m just glad we’ve found a good source of food until our crops grow.”
“Yea, me too. I don’t think I could eat half-bad canned beans anymore,” Tonya laughed, lightening the mood.“Alright, you should be good now. Good thing we stocked up on some bandages too.”
From downstairs, Lincoln yelled, “Dinner’s ready!” A smile came to everyone’s face as they made their way downstairs into the dining room.
“Mmm, Lincoln, this smells delicious,” Ariel praised. “What’d you make?”
“Fish stew, of course,” Lincoln said, putting the bowls of stew in front of everyone.”
“Mmm, sounds… yummy,” Tonya lied.
“Tonya,” Ariel chastised.
“Sorry,” Tonya apologized. “Thank you, Lincoln, for the food.”
“No problem, m’lady. So, how are we gonna deal with the problem?” Lincoln asked.
“What problem?” Ariel asked, confused while digging into her stew.
“Well, they were attacked and, I doubt that’ll be there last time, and what if they come back here?”
“I doubt that’d happen,” Ariel dismissed.
“Don’t leave it to doubt. It’s better to be prepared than surprised.”
“We can barely hold our own Lincoln,” Ariel stressed. “We’re getting just enough food to feed the kids. What do you suppose we do?”
“We recruit more adults. We’re running a daycare center at this point, Ariel.”
“How do we get those adults? It’s not like they’re willing to listen, look at Mikael and Carlos,” Ariel pointed at them, looking injured and beat.
“Look, you have a letter to take to Savannah, right? Let’s go there. We could probably find some people there and supplies. We’ll take the two horses and stay there for a couple of days and get what we can,” Lincoln advised.
Tonya interrupted, “No, you should go. You made a deal and Lincoln’s right. We need to help whoever we can. Just like in Atlanta. I can take charge of this place until you get back.”
“Are you guys sure?”
Mikael nodded, “Go, we’ll be fine.”
“Fine, I’ll go, but please be careful.”
“As always,” Mikael reassured.
“Be ready before sunrise. We have a long trip ahead of us,” Lincoln smiled, digging into his fish stew.
Wednesday, November 7, 2018
Afternoon - Apocalypse Month 2
“We finally made it to Savannah, that took longer than expected,” Ariel mentioned as she looked around. It was just like the highway to Atlanta. Cars were abandoned, and feral creatures were running around, the odor of the dead becoming almost unbearable as they entered the city. ‘This is sick,’ Ariel thought.
“We just need to find the man we’re looking for and get some information from him,” Lincoln stated. “Who are we looking for again?”
“A pastor that goes by the last name of Reed? He teaches in a local church called… St. Paul,” Ariel elaborated.
“Isn’t that in the middle of the city?”
“Let’s just hope people aren’t eating each other,” Lincoln joked.
In front of them sat the Church of St. Paul. basking in its glory as the sun beamed upon it. Its members were cleaning the area spotless as if God himself was observing them from the heavens and guarding the building behind them. Most held weapons like the bayonets of 17th-century muskets attached to a stick, others holding gardening tools, and even less holding their bibles in hand. One of the clergymen had caught their eye and started making their way towards the group. He was relatively short and stubby, with light brown skin, hazel eyes, and hair like a lion’s mane.
“Hi, there. My name’s Deion, but my friends call me Dee,” Deion greeted with a bright smile on his face, “What brings you to this part of town?”
“Well I’m Ariel and this is Lincoln, and we’re, uh, just running some errands,” Ariel laughed.
“Haha, yea? Haven’t heard many say that lately.”
“What is this place?” Lincoln asked.
“This is the Great Church of St. Paul, o’course! We spread the gospel and change lives!”
“That’s mighty nice of y’all.”
Dee only nodded, “Would y’all like a tour of this great place?”
“No, that’s alright. We need to finish our errand and we don’t want to be a bother,” Ariel confessed.
“Bother? That’s nonsense. Come on, I can show you around and then we’ll get you some hot food!” Dee insisted. Ariel looked at Lincoln, asking for assistance, not wanting to stay at the church.
“We’d be glad to do so! Show us the way,” Lincoln smiled.
“Great, I promise you it’ll be worth your time.”
After tying the horses to a nearby pole, Dee began their tour of the great church in front of them. On the side of the church laid a green area that looked like it was meant to be a flower garden of some kind that turned into a pretty small farm.
“We’ve started to grow our own food with the help of our newest members,” Dee mentioned. “We’ve done huge renovations since The Second Coming.”
“The Second Coming?” Ariel asked.
“Yes ma’am, God has told us that it’s the second coming.”
“Well, why are you still on Earth?”
“Because, we are here to spread the gospel to those who are stuck in this purgatory and bring them to the light with their last breath,” Dee explained. “God always has a plan, right?”
“... Right,” Ariel hesitated. “Where’d you guys get all this food?”
“Just a bit of convincing and the lord’s work is all,” Dee laughed. “But now we’re coming up to the prayer hall. In total there’s about three hundred people in this congregation, and usually around thirty people are in here at all times.”
Lincoln whistled, “Three hundred people? That’s not very much for a church.. What happened to your”
“A lot of people have left since The Second Coming. That either by viruses and plagues, murder, or leaving the city altogether.”
“Speaking of viruses, I haven’t seen a sick person yet.”
“We sanitize everything and take care of the sickly in an orderly fashion,” Dee explained. “We try to make sure everyone is safe, of course. Moving on, we’re headed to the mess hall, this is where everyone relaxes and eats when done with their duties of the day.”
“Everyone here is assigned a job to do, we must all do our part in God’s plan, no?”
Entering the church’s mess hall, candles stood across the room, giving a dim light to the approaching night. The floors lined with what looked to be cobbled stone and wooden walls like some olden church, which makes sense for the history of Savannah. Clergypersons sat, at what seemed to be, their assigned seating. Different types of clergy members with different religious robes sat at different tables, and the followers sat at their own table wearing their everyday clothes.
‘There’s obviously some type of hierarchy going on here,’ Lincoln thought.
“This ends our tour, if you have any questions, please just ask,” Dee smiled, turning around to leave.
“Wait before you go,” Ariel said, stopping him in his tracks. “Do you happen to know where Pastor Reed is?”
“Oh, you mean Archbishop? He’s over there,” Dee pointed to a man at the other end of the room. He had dark skin, bald, with even darker eyes, and black robes with a golden accent. On each side of his sleeves were embroidered crosses in gold. He sat with four others in grey robes.
“Well, let’s go see,” Ariel walked over to the man; he was eating like a king, his plate full, while the others had a pitiful word for soup of some kind.
“Archbishop, Ariel and Lincoln. Ariel and Lincoln, Archbishop,” Dee said.
“Nice to meet you, Ariel,” Archbishop Reed said. “What brings you to this grand church here in Savannah?”
“Well, we’d like to speak to you privately,” Ariel asked.
“You wish to seek a private audience? Interesting,” Reed thought aloud. “Come with me.”
After walking further along the church and into an opening, they reached a part of the building where the building had an opening. In the middle was a small field with different types of flowers and grasses. The moon invisible in the night sky, but barely did anyone notice as the stars shined brighter than ever. Archbishop Reed sat down on a nearby bench, and the three of them finally talked. “What is it that you need to speak to me privately about?” Archbishop asked.
“I’ve been told to give you a letter from Mayor Crawford.”
“Mayor Crawford, of Forsyth?” Reed asked.
“What does that big man want from me now?” Reed questioned, opening the letter. He sat there and read it. After a couple of moments, he looked up from the paper with a serious face. “Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I’ll be doing so accordingly.”
“No problem, just fulfilling a promise,” Ariel smiled.
“If you don’t mind me asking, what does the letter say?” Lincoln asked.
“You’re a nosy person, eh?” Reed asked.
“Most people call me bossy, but I can work with nosy,” Lincoln laughed.
“Nothing much, just a fair warning of the Mayor’s visitations to this church,” Reed explained.
“Oh, he’s going to leave Forsyth? What about their people?” Ariel asked, not understanding.
“I told you they wouldn’t last long,” Lincoln said sarcastically.
Ariel ignored him, “Well, I’m sure they’ll figure everything out. Thank you so much for your hospitality, but we’ll be on our way shortly.”
“Why won’t you stay a few days,” Reed proposed. “We have plenty of food for just two more people, it’d be a shame for it all to go to waste.”
“No, it’s fine. We don’t want to be a bother.”
“I insist,” Reed smiled.