This Valley Of Ours
Three weeks, three long weeks since we left, I lay in the hotel. Hannah lying next to me, we were on the night-watch. Two weeks ago we had decided to always have a pair of people in town. The other pair would stay at home and bring anything down if needed. It was a nice system. Two of us would be able to watch the monitors from the traffic cameras on the highway while the other two rested at the home.
Two weeks ago we had decided to begin using a new strategy to defend our town. Hack the traffic cameras on the highway, out forty miles into the mountains. Thirty to the edge of the mountain range where the highway led into the plains and into Denver, what was left of it. Hook up a computer to the system to ring an alarm when it tracked movement. Then the two people in the town would be ready to grab more info from the cameras, radio the other two. Then have them bring whatever was needed at the time.
Then we started with the supplies, slowly working on moving the foods from the different zones we had marked to our house, when the basement was full we began on another house further up the road leading to my house. We hadn’t filled that one up before we switched to another to spread out the supplies.
"Can’t sleep?" Hannah mumbled as she shifted so she could sit up. I looked over at her. She was sleepily looking back, concern etched on her face. The night outside pierced with light from the buildings we hadn’t shut power off to yet.
"Yeah, too much to think of," I rolled back while Hannah crossed her legs.
"Your arm alright?"
"Yeah," I mumbled back. The Spray Seal we had put on the wound a week and a half ago had tightened the skin together and was healing the arm much faster, only leaving a dimple in the skin, what would become a scar. Wakan’s leg had also healed from when we met. My left arm twinged.
"Are you sure you’re alright?" Hannah whispered and rolled toward me so her back was snuggled against the side of my chest, pulling my arm over herself.
"I’m sure. Why are you worrying too much?"
"Well, you’ve been quiet lately and not sleeping much," Hannah had taken to sleeping in the same bed when we stayed in the resort-hotel when we were assigned to the town. The six-storied hotel was up against the ski-slope on the opposite side of the town from the highway, right next to the road that led to the cabin.
"And why do you think that’s a problem? I’ve never slept much," I replied, this was a partial-truth. I had been bothered by something lately, but what exactly still eluded my grasp. An uncomfortable feeling always closing in on my mind when I tried to sleep, like a fly buzzing around my head, it never left me; always coming back to bother me at the worst times.
"Well, you keep waking me up…"
"And for which you could go sleep in another part of the Grand Suite," I said. When we first began to sleep here we had decided to sleep in the top level. A three thousand square foot suite that cost, as the roster said, four thousand dollars a night to stay in, I grinned at the thought of the bill if there ever was one.
"That’s not the point, Fred; if you’re going to be up all this time, don’t you want to do something…productive?" Hannah looked back. My grin disappeared as Hannah giggled and rubbed her back against my chest and turned so she was face to face with me.
"Not tonight Hannah," I said then leaned forward and pecked her muzzle. I didn’t sleep.
Morning brought the sun peeking around the terminus of the valley. I sat and watched the sunrise from the couch as Hannah slept. The sunrise peeked over the railings of the verandah, automatic street-lights flicking out section by section in the town below. I picked up the helmet, the thin OLED screen flicked down as I tapped the comm-link once. Since I slept down here and didn’t have as good night-vision as Hannah or anybody else, I had to wear the helmet for the help it gave. Not that I complained. The world was a different place through those screens. A soldier’s world I thought as I turned the helmet around, the gen-12 night vision making the entire world glow with brilliance. Every soul in it’s radius that was picked up in the sensors then illuminated on the screen.
"You awake?" Hannah stood next to me with the thick white blankets wrapped around her. Her red and white legs showed through the slightly-parted front, claws scratching the surface of the carpet.
"No, I’m not awake," I replied and got up, another uneventful day. Since we started our watches nothing had happened.
But we had found the journals, I thought to myself. The officer in charge of that force that ended up shooting my arm had kept immaculate journals. They had deserted. All of them, taking as many weapons as possible. They had wanted to push east and blow past the seemingly un-motivated Furs and gain riches, the spoils of war in the form of unprotected banks. Then settle down somewhere and wait the war out.
Then the part that Cloud confirmed by web. Hoover had been nuked. One week after fighting had started, the Humanists had pushed the Fur-Forces into the dam itself. The Humanists had decided to persuade them to talk of a possible surrender, and a "public demonstration", as the journal had written. A video we had found showed the furs in the dam watching a conference led by a few humans, fur supporters, talking with Humanists. The Humanists in clean armor, the fur-supporting humans looked dirty, red dust caked on their pants. All the Humanists and Furs stood about, holding weapons nervously. At the signal of one of the negotiators a single man had walked up with a briefcase. The two parties seemed to have reached an agreement, the live-camera feed Cloud had found recorded and stored somewhere, showed the human fur supporter look up, scraggly and defeat etched on his face as the camera zoomed on him before panning out on the room and back to the table. The briefcase was set on the table with an audible thud, then the video-feed showed both parties recoil from the briefcase as it was opened, and the uplink cut-out.
Hannah sighed, "So, what’s on the agenda today?"
"Well, gather more supplies, see what we can do for more security. Something like that, maybe show you how to use a scope," I put the helmet on the coffee table. "Have I showed you how to use a scope?"
Hannah shook her head, her tail swished once, making the blanket around her twitch, restricting her white-tipped tail.
I looked up to see black specks flying westward. UAV’s, they’d been doing that now for four days, going at evening, returning at daybreak. Most of the time all of them came back. Most of the time.
With a flick of her wrist, Hannah activated the window, a clear screen showing information of the hotel’s services. She tracked her hand across the glass and selected music. A library of thousands of tracks glowed in front of us, each one with a price-tag for a download from the hotel’s collection. The screen flickered as Hannah selected all the tracks, then turned for a shower. Just as Hannah passed, she grabbed my wrist and began pulling me to the shower. I stood as Hannah pulled.
Hannah stopped pulling at my wrist as I stood still, looking through the window.
"Do you love me, Furzitani?" Hannah whispered as she stood behind me.
"It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around."
"Why?" Hannah still stood still with the blanket around her. "How is it hard when I love you?" Hannah interrupted before I could speak.
"Because I don’t know what love is," I answered, yelling wasn’t going to help. Even though I felt like it now. "Is love just some chemical called Oxytosin? Or is it an actual smorgasbord of feelings creating emotion?"
Hannah took her blanket and slung it around my back as she walked in front of me.
"Love is caring for those in their highs and lows," Hannah said, then, with the blanket around both of us, hugged me in the sunrise peeking through the mountains.
It was only when Hannah started taking a shower did I relax. Slowly sinking down into one of the couches, the music slower now, the water running in the background as I waited my turn.
Wakan and Cloud’s truck turned the street as Hannah and I watched. Waiting. Today was supposed to be another supply run through the town, stockpile everything we could. Then swap places after improving security. Hannah and I would sleep at the house later, Wakan and Cloud sleeping down at the hotel.
A high whine filled the air as Hannah and I looked up. A UAV, slow and low.
Hannah waved her arms as I pointed, then tried the HAM radio, trying to get them out of the car as they rolled to a stop. A thin grey missile darted from the UAV, the impact shaking the ground. First a plume of dust overwhelming the street, then the black smoke and fire rising.
I spun in an eternal movement. Hannah ducked back through the glass doorway just as it shattered from small arms fire. A single bullet whizzed past and snapped the helmet from my hands and fell amongst the crystalline shards of glass. Hannah yelped once as a round hit her M1 Garand. She dropped it.
I ran for the first door down a hallway to the right of the lobby, the ballroom. Hannah followed closely. She hadn’t unholstered her 1911 as she ran after me. The doors to the kitchen thundered open as the butt of the M24A3 slammed into them. It was dark, but just enough light to see. There was a light on the far end leading outside.
Halfway through the kitchen the lights flickered once, then glared from the ceiling. I spun as Hannah gasped once.
The curved tip of a knife poked through Hannah’s soft stomach as she gurgled once. A chill creeped up from inside, men around the room raised their rifles as the one behind Hannah kicked her down. My rifle limp in my hands I stood and stared. Hannah looked up once; her green eyes flickered as a tear seeped from one eye, then gone as another man kicked her head back. A snap resounding through the room as another man raised his black ACR to point at me.
Hannah brushed her smooth pads over my face again as I flinched awake. The sofa pillow on the floor, Hannah squatting on the couch next to me with a towel around her, Wakan looked from the main lounge. I could see Cloud shift behind him.
"He’s alright, we’ll meet you in the main lobby," Hannah watched the two leave on the private elevator then turned to me.
"Are you alri…" Hannah gasped once as I wrapped my arms around her and pulled her tight, one hand probing her back through the towel for that wound, her damp fur soaking my chest.
"What’s wrong Fred?" Hannah whispered.
"I think, I think I’m in love with you," I whispered into her shoulder. The lingering cold deep in my chest making my heart race
Hannah pushed her arm around my neck and waited until I relaxed before shifting to a more comfortable position.
"Do you understand what love is now?" Hannah whispered as she shifted her towel.
"Understand, maybe. Feel, yes,"
"Well, I love you, Furzitani, and I’m not leaving you,"
"What made you think I thought you were leaving me?" I asked and let her slide so she was lying next to me on the oversized couches.
"You were screaming,"
"Oh," I started pulling the fur straight on her forearm. Hannah sat there and pulled her own hair straight. She slowly got up from the now-wet couch then pulled me up.
"Want to tell me what that was?"
"Not now," I replied as Hannah shrugged before pulling me to the shower.
It was another hour before both of us walked out into the glass and wood lobby. Wakan and Cloud rising from one of the areas where the floor dropped down a step into a sunken lounge.
"Are you going to be okay?" Cloud got up and asked as Wakan did the same.
"He’s going to be okay, just a bad dream," Hannah replied and tugged me to one of the chairs in the semi-circle couches. I sat down next to her, letting go of her soft hand. Cloud walked to a TV mounted above a fireplace as Wakan sat again on the other side of the semi circle watching Cloud turn the TV on and wirelessly link his laptop to the monitor.
Green spots showed up along the highway, we had decided a week earlier all of us would begin to empty out the stores closest to the highway first. This way if anybody decided to enter the town for supplies there would be more opportunities to see who they were. Or so we planned as I looked across to the TV. We had hardly made a dent on some supplies. Other stores were wiped out, and perishable goods sitting on the shelves rotting day by day. But today was, as we had promised each other, a supposedly slow day.
"Alright, any preference on where we could work? Or are we just going to mess around?" Cloud asked as Wakan stared blankly at the screen. Hannah sat back, and looked at me.
"Do you want to decide, Fred?" Hannah asked as I looked at the screen, then the arched ceiling.
"I really don’t feel like working today, we’ve done enough as-is. If you guys don’t feel like working, I’m going to take a break today," I sighed those last words. Still drained from the vivid dream, even after the lengthy shower.
"Well, I feel like resting, Wakan said he was tired last night. Hannah? What about you?" Cloud asked as he stared at the screen. The town’s 3-D map turning slowly to give us a full view of the town from all directions.
"I think Fred needs to work on some unfinished business," Hannah said, her voice barely audible over the silence of the main lobby. Even with a deserted town, there was still a lot of noise, as we found out. So much so that sometimes it was deafening. Birds, electrical equipment, our own echoing noises passing through the town; the wind going in between the buildings, doors and windows creaking with the passing breeze, it was quiet now.
"What kind of business?" Wakan asked as he warily looked at me.
"I think, as I’ve told Hannah, I need to go back for some more guns. Some tools, special ones for my MAV, and… some heirlooms," I said. For the past few weeks little things had been bothering me. A little toolkit that could’ve helped cut a new sheet of auto glass for the rear window from the auto-repair shop here in the resort was at home. Something I was far more comfortable using than the huge machines in the shop in the town. Only today had I consulted Hannah on my thoughts.
"Well, what can you get down there that we can’t get here?" C loud asked.
"At home I had special tools that we don’t have here. There’s also some heirlooms, then there’s the issue of Hannah’s pills," I said, not wanting them to go with me, not wanting them to ask why else I would be going.
"Well, let me go get more stuff ready and we can go back," Wakan began but Hannah stopped him.
"I think it’s better if Fred and I went, just us," she said.
"That’s stupid, you going off by yourselves; you’ll be easy targets by yourselves."
"Well, it’s a personal issue," Hannah said, I had told her why else I wanted to go back.
"Well, what kind of personal issue?" asked Cloud.
"Personal enough," Hannah shot back.
"Fine, give me one good reason why else you guys should go back by yourselves," Wakan retorted.
Hannah got up, quickly. Cloud and Wakan flinched, her hand pushing me back as I shifted forward to get up.
"Let me talk to you in private. Fred can stay here," Hannah said sharply. I looked after them, not really wanting to talk, but not knowing whether or not I wanted Hannah to really tell them about the bodies of my parents. Not sure if she was even going to tell them about my parents. There was that sinking feeling.
"OK, so why are you guys going by yourselves?" Wakan asked as Cloud followed behind Hannah, Wakan walking alongside her past the front desk, toward the ballroom.
"His parents," Hannah said. Glaring at them
"His parents what?" Wakan asked, Cloud standing back.
"He wants to go back to cremate them," Hannah growled.
"Why? There isn’t going to be much le…" Wakan yelped as Hannah grabbed his muzzle and pulled him down toward her.
"This is a personal thing. I’m going according to his wishes. And if he doesn’t want you there, so god help me, I will rip your fur out if you try to go with us," Hannah growled, scraping her claws across Wakan’s muzzle as she let go, leaving thin lines of parted fur, red skin showing through.
"You could have just told us and we would’ve cooperated," Cloud softly said as Hannah began to walk back, she paused, her tail waving once.
The MAV’s 12 liter engine rumbled as I turned out from the parking garage of the hotel. Wakan and Cloud looked on as we entered the noon sun. A deep blue truck glimmered in the governor’s drive in front of the hotel. Cloud waved at us from the rearview mirror.
The inside of the home, our summer home, as we went in was disorganized. Stacks of food and supplies in what corners could be used, yet to be moved to other houses in the valley, or the basement of this house. Hannah went to her room, while I checked over the guns. I grabbed a shortened Bushmaster ACR in 5.56mm NATO. Compact, low recoil, and a decent range. I waited near the front door as Hannah returned with some food and ammunition for her M1 Garand. Her S&W 1911 strapped securely on her right thigh, the HAM radio on her left collar.
"You ready?" I asked as she passed.
The electric engines thrummed as onboard computers of the MAV switched to peak efficiency. The car running silent now as it accelerated up the onramp. Hannah stared out the window over the town as pine trees on the side of the road began flickering past. The wind howling through the rear window until I rolled down all the other windows. The breeze came whistling through the cabin, only the rushing of wind, tires, and engines making sound. Hannah and I both knew why we were going to my old home, our old home. There was no talk as we drove. We passed a small flipped SUV on the highway.
The town of Golden spread out below us as the MAV drove over the quiet rise on I-70. A major east-west highway, this was normally filled with semi trucks, and especially now, tourists. But right now, it was empty. Save a few cars on the sides of the road, one with a blackened body next to it. Hannah’s hair whipped around her as I coasted the MAV down the mountainside, her dark copper strands catching the light in fine filaments. I stared back down the road.
Past Golden, closer to Denver, I slowed and drove down an off-ramp. Every so often we had seen a technical, a pickup with furs, and humans with guns in the back. And once in a while groups of people would point from side-roads. They weren’t on this street though, only a few more minutes and turns brought me to my street. The large white houses, manicured lawns, torn now, most of them anyways. Hannah stared at our old house, the gaping garage door an ugly scar in the mansion. The door stood ajar, and some people had obviously been in and out, recently, there were things spread out on the lawn. All the pretty, trivial things now scattered and shattered on the green grass.
The MAV bumped on the gutter once as it went up on the driveway. I stared out at the other houses as the engine idled. The neighborhood was quiet.
"Where’s everybody?" Hannah whispered as I swung the Bushmaster up and checked the chamber.
"If they’re still here, I hope that they don’t have any business with us," I paused, and looked at the house – the other cars were gone. A hole in the door had been hacked wider to drive the other cars out. The simple aluminum and steel doors easy to pull apart section-by-section from my original break weeks ago from the MAV.
"Do you still want to go in?" Hannah whispered as I stared, unmoving, disbelief that the house could turn into this in the space of weeks.
"Yeah, let’s get this over with," I mumbled, then popped the door. Hannah did likewise and jumped down. Her M1 Garand almost hitting the concrete as the weight slipped.
I slowly walked to the garage door with the rifle raised; spying the tools I needed through the top of the sights, before clearing the room and walking to pick them up from the work bench in the side of the garage.
"Let’s throw those in and work our way through the rest of the house," Hannah tugged on my shoulder.
I avoided the front entrance, rather going to the gun safe first. Hannah followed slowly, her rifle pointed down. I should’ve given her something more suitable.
"Fred, where are the guns?" Hannah whispered as I looked. There had to be dozens of guns left in the safe when we had ran, we had, just possibly only hit a quarter, maybe, just maybe, a third of the guns. Now they were all gone. I turned and walked to the front foyer.
Only blood stains were left, no bodies, trails of brown leading out the front door. There was a charred spot on the lawn. I stared at the white sticks poking through the dirt, and kneeled.
"I think we should go, Fred," Hannah whispered as she crouched next to me. I kept staring. I didn’t even say goodbye; their bodies weren’t at rest, never would be.
"Fred, I can hear something, let’s go," Hannah whispered and tugged again. I stumbled back up and turned for the mudroom leading to the garage. Then stopped.
"There’s still stuff we need," I croaked and stopped my hobbled walking, dropped to my knees too quick in the foyer. I turned and began walking, then froze as Hannah let out a long whine.
"Didn’t you guys have a nice vacation? Mind telling me where you were?" I slowly turned to face Avery Kerr. The color drained then from my face for the first time seeing him, holding one of my guns, my father’s guns.
"You must be the welcome home committee," I snarled, my assault rifle already tipped nearly level, but off to the side as Avery hid behind Hannah. The black Glock pressing the side of Hannah’s temple below her ear.
"Not just me, say hello to everybody else," He chuckled as I turned then stopped. More men stood in the foyer, including his father and the other men wielding my father’s guns.
"Drop it," Mr. Kerr growled as my rifle turned. Hannah whined as Avery tightened his grip around Hannah’s neck. She began to cough as I paused, then dropped the Bushmaster after clicking the safety.
"C’mon, it’s a nice day outside. Let’s walk," Avery smugly retorted and grabbed Hannah’s hair, making her yelp, and jerked her outside. The men behind me poked their guns at my back, some of the other men stopping to pick up the new weapons. The S&W .500 in my jacket making an obvious bulge as I passed through the garage.
As soon as Fred walked from the torn garage a man standing behind the door swung the butt of his rifle into his gut. The S&W catching part of the blow as Fred reeled back and dropped to the concrete, the jacket falling back to reveal the pistol. Avery walked forward and yanked the strap over Fred’s shoulder and took the pistol, staring. Holding with inexperienced hands and giving the gun to his own father, who too fumbled with the large gun.
"So, feel like giving this bitch her freedom after stealing her, huh?" Avery spat as Hannah was held back by one of the other men her own 1911 ripped, holster and all from her. She didn’t move as Avery kicked again, only looking down at the concrete. Avery stopped and looked at her. Slowly, deliberately, walking to her. Fred looked up to see him lift her muzzle, then swing a fist. He flinched as Hannah yelped, her sharp cry shattering the still air.
Avery walked back, Hannah now limp in the man’s arms as he held her hands behind her back, a thin line of blood began to stream onto the concrete to form a small pool. There was another kick, this time hitting Fred’s lungs, more coming from all directions, all parts of his body being hit as he tried to cover his head with his arms. It didn’t stop as he felt something in his side pop. Then his shin crack. But he kept still as shocks wracked his body. Another boot finally making contact with his chin, then the small of his back before they slowed.
"Take his clothes," Avery barked at the others still kicking Fred. Fred didn’t move, a black eye from a blunt heel already swelling and forming. There were scrapes from the boots and concrete. Abrasions making angry red patches of skin, little specks of black grit embedded in them.
A final boot impacted his forehead, then he felt a crack as the butt of a rifle hit the back of his neck downward. He saw stars as his head bounced from the concrete as he stopped trying to protect himself.
Fred watched them leave, his clothes gone, Hannah being dragged and kicked as they walked down the street, holding their guns high. He watched in mute horror, frozen as one of them turned and fired.
Glass landed around Fred as a window on his MAV shattered, some falling to hit his abrasions. Angry tears welled up as he watched the men slowly recede.
He got up as soon as they were out of sight, angry tears stinging the sides of his eyes, not flowing but there. The soreness in his head turning into a blurry red as blood washed down his body. His body was shaking, but he didn’t feel any pain. He felt like moving, quickly, he had to do something, his heart was racing; he didn’t hear anything but blood pounding in his ears. His vision cleared, slight tinges of red at the edges. He clenched his hand into a fist, feeling more blood well up in his hand from the blunt nails. A section of garage door dented in as he punched it passing. The door leading to the mudroom breaking the hinges as he kicked it in, by now his footprints were bloody as he marched.
He ran back into the house to his room, old jeans going on top of boxers. A light-green button-up T-shirt over his torso, he didn’t bother buttoning it up as he ran outside, his knees knocking, and his right shin sending spasms up his leg. His breathing was short and pained as his hands began to twitch and convulse. He began to sprint up the road and stopped, then turned back into the garage, picking up an old wooden bat. Still polished and smooth from gentle care. He walked back up to the abused aluminum garage door before swinging the bat into the rail that guided the door. An entire section ripped from his mounts as Fred turned from the door and walked out.
He glanced once at the MAV, they had taken the keys, his guns, his parents, and most of all Hannah; then humiliated them in front of each other, almost taking his life. His thoughts raced over those facts, then he took off. He ran faster than he ever had, but the shaking slowed slightly the harder he exerted himself. He quickly caught up, creeping to a slow walk as he squinted from his swelling eye at the group. Keeping himself a block behind them, only for a moment though. He watched them enter a house in view of the highway, seven of them total. One sitting outside on the porch, the other went to the back.
Fred crept through the green lawns, slightly bent as he held a bat in one hand. The other held out in front of him, spread out to ward off the branches from the surrounding bushes. The man looked around and faced the bushes on the side of the house and unzipped his pants, Fred sprinted the last few feet, the man didn’t even look up as Fred swung once, the tip of the heavy bat hitting him in the temple, cracking it. The man dropped like a rock. A pistol sliding from the back of his pants, another one of Fred’s fathers pistols, a Walther P99. He picked it up, racking the slide, the .40 caliber rounds shined as he holstered the gun silently, and hefted the bat once more.
The other man sat facing away as Fred walked up onto the deck barefoot, his soles not even making a sound as he swung. The man was barely conscious as he fell to the deck only to see a bat swing down again to hit his windpipe, collapsing it instantly. His eyes widened as he choked on himself, trying to breathe through his destroyed windpipe as Fred stepped over him and cracked the door open, the man gurgling behind him.
Fred sneaked paste the foyer, nobody was there. He could hear raucous laughing from down the hall, he peeked around the corner, two men standing at a door to a room. Fred waited, then walked to an adjacent room to a hallway further down the house, and scuffled the carpet and silently hid behind the wall next to the entrance to the room.
One man walked past him from a separate hallway to the room he had scuffled the carpet. Fred didn’t any attention to the muted voices in the other room as he cracked one head, the man falling past him, before sprinting. By the time the other man at the door turned to look Fred swung. His bat smashing the bridge of the man’s nose. He fell with a thump and screamed, for only a split second. The next one was brought down on his windpipe as blood flowed from his face.
Fred didn’t even look down as he switched hands for the bat and pulled the P99 from his pants as the door cracked open before he fired. The fifth man beyond the door fell back, the bullet splitting his head open.
The door began to swing shut as Fred swung the bat with his left hand. The doorknob jolted into the wood and cracked as the bat slammed the door open. A curse was barely audible to Fred’s ears as he slid the gun instinctively into his jeans again and gripped the wooden bat. Mr. Kerr stared at the bleeding teen in disbelief then anger. He swung a fist as Fred swung the bat.
A crack filled the room as the fist hit the bat, shattering the bones. Mr. Kerr fell, howling as Fred swung again, catching him in the fork of his legs. Another crack filling the room as the soft, sensitive flesh gave way to the point that the bat broke the skin and hipbone. The bat was raised again, bloody, and brought down again with a loud yell. The loudest snap yet, like a gunshot, rang through the room as the bat shattered on Mr. Kerr’s forehead.
Fred turned, and yelled, Hannah laid, barely conscious over a coffee table, more blood coming from her muzzle. A knife stuck in her thigh, the crimson blood matting her fur. His eyes caught Avery, lifting, trying to lift the S&W .500 with shaking hands at Fred.
It only took four strides for Fred to cross the little living room, the stump of the bat still in his hands. He slapped the gun out of Avery’s hands and swung one fist with the stump of the bat still clenched within it. Avery fell back, crying as his eye swelled. Before being punched again right below the ribs. Fred turned, strode to Hannah and lifted her; with the adrenaline he didn’t even pause as he moved her past the bodies into a plush theater room and set her on a couch. She groaned as he did, but he was deaf. He looked at her pained face as she looked at him before he took off his shirt and lay it over her bare chest. She still had her skirt.
He found the kitchen was across from the room she had been in. Avery was still in there moaning and holding his face as Fred found a drawer with identical silver knives to the one in Hannah’s thigh. He picked up a handful and strode to the room, Avery backed off as he saw Fred, mute and teeming with anger as he held the knives.
Fred lifted the knives as Avery whimpered and cried, then threw them. They clattered to the floor; all of them simply slapped the tan skin on Avery. Avery looked up, and met a single shot from the Walther.
Fred collected his and Hannah’s gear, slinging the rifles over his back, the pistol over his shoulder, and picked up Hannah. His body was shaking badly by now. His shin beginning to throb with each heartbeat, blood congealing on his face.
Fred sprinted six blocks with Hannah in his arms back to the house and gently set her down in the MAV, reclining the seat, and grabbed a medical kit Wakan had left in the car.
Hannah whined as Fred quickly worked on her, gasping as he drew the sharp knife from her. The cut was deep but narrow, he still stitched it, normally squeamish, he sanitized and stitched what he could. His hands shaking badly but working deftly as he worked on Hannah while standing up.
A half hour passed as he worked on Hannah, he looked up as she began to speak. Hannah was cut off as Fred jammed a pill in her throat, a sleeping agent. She began to speak, then fell back, watching him through narrowed eyes as he sprinted back and forth from the house until she fell asleep.
To be continued.
Story and Characters are copyright © 2009 anonymous
Chakat universe is copyright of Bernard Doove.
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