A Year Underfoot

July 11th, 2033

I was hoping to leave the park tonight, but it looks like that isn’t going to happen any time soon. The skies are lousy with warbirds on patrol, and with the hundreds of fresh troop carriers rolling through the area, making a break for it now would be nothing short of suicide. Instead of continuing north as I’d planned, I’ll have to wait until the trio of supply transports depart and the parade of troopers thins out before I make my move. At the rate they’re off-loading the troops and supplies it shouldn’t be more than a couple of days, – I hope.

Until then, I’ll sit tight and take stock.

Besides the obvious staring me in the face, another major concern has reared its ugly head, – I’m almost out of food and water.

I’ve been living out of my backpack for a week now and the sticks of salami, the cheeses, the power bars and the trail mixes I’d packed away are disappearing faster than I’d expected. Rationing tightly, I have five days max, maybe less.

Water isn’t a concern, at least, not yet, anyway. There are plenty of freshwater streams, rivers, and lakes in the area to keep me hydrated, and the water purification kit I picked up a week ago is more than up for the challenge to keep me dysentery free.

I only pray it works as advertised.

Along with the water purification kit, I also picked up a few other items. Namely a crossbow, a quiver of flights, – the infrared field glasses, a compass, a flashlight, a first aid kit, a pot, a pan, a couple of pocket knives, – including a Swiss army knife and a multi-tool.

I’d also picked up a warm blanket, an extra pair of long johns and a goose down jacket rated to -20 below. I won’t need them for quite a while, but I’ll gladly pack them away until I do.

I’m about as prepared as I can be, considering I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. But, I do know I’m better off than most, and sitting here whining about what I don’t have isn’t going to help me one damn bit.



About paul nevins

Fiction writer, reader and baseball fan.
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