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Fiction – Ruth’s Story #26 – Spending the night in the middle of I5

April 8, 2012

Entering the Radio Shack, I note it is somewhat darker than when I left. Only two candles still burn the rest extinguished in my absence. The small shelter also now reeks of the familiar smell of Clean Lubricate Protect (CLP), a common military-grade cleaning oil and preservative sold under common names like Brake-Free. Brake-Free and similar clones have been used by nearly every military for the past 20 years or more.

Carol and Nikola pushed the tables to the side clearing a spot in the middle of the shelter. In this open spot, they have piled several scratchy gray U.S. Government Issue wool blankets making a warm scratchy ground pad several inches thick. Spread on top of this scratchy wool ground pad is three U.S. Army Extreme Cold Weather Sleeping (ECWS) system three-layer sleeping bags in the old woodland green camo pattern. I notice only one ECWS bag is zipped up for a single occupant; the other two are laid out more like blankets. I guess so that Nikola and Carol can sleep cuddled together.

Carol, I notice is already sitting in what I assumed are her and Nikola’s sleeping bags. I also guess she is already naked as she keeps the bag pulled up to her arm pits while brushing her hair. Her bare shoulders, the tops of her breasts and her cleavage are as heavily dusted with freckles as her face I notice.

Nikola is sitting behind Carol at the table busily assembling his VSS rifle after cleaning it and the H&K pistol. The H&K pistol now sans suppressor lies on the table slide locked open amid a pile of dirty cleaning patches, a small open black plastic squirt bottle of CLP, and a military issue multi-piece gun cleaning rod. A full H&K .45 caliber magazine lies next to the pistol. I note the pistol suppressor is tucked into an O.D. green nylon pouch now hanging on the gun belt. I see Nikola has also drunk a couple cans of warm Coors beer as their crushed forms rest beside the bottle of CLP.

Nikola finishes assembling the VSS rifle and reaches under the table. Nikola pulls a standard; narrow U.S. military .30 caliber metal green ammo can out from underneath the table. Opening the ammo can, while resting it between his feet; Nikola pulls out a small cardboard box with Cyrillic writing. I cannot read most of the label because it is too dark but the larger numbers on the card board box I can read. The ammo that Nikola is now loading into the 20-round AS rifle magazine is the heavy, subsonic SP-5 250gr load. If memory serves the effective range of the SP-5 load was about 400 meters; plenty far enough for zombie eradication. The stubby 9x39mm rounds click easily into place in the AS rifle magazine.

Nikola finishes loading the AS rifle magazine and replaces it back in the VSS rifle, if he has another magazine, for the rifle I do not see one. He racks the rifle’s action to chamber a round and sets the VSS rifle on the table with the safety off. You cannot miss the enormous safety on an AK-variant rifle. He then picks up the H&K .45 pistol and also loads it by shoving the magazine home and dropping the slide, but I cannot see if he puts the safety on or not.

Finished with his weapons, Nikola sits back in the chair, looking at me with a raised eyebrow. From his vantage, he can see Carol’s naked back as she continues to brush her hair. She must be one of those women that have to brush their hair like a 1,000 strokes a night. Childhood habit or OCD I wonder?

“Nikola, I need to use the latrine would you please come with me?” I ask. “I’d ask Carol, but she is already naked.” Carol shrugs and continues to brush her hair.

Nikola nods at me and picks up his O.D. green gun belt buckling around his hips. Picking up the H&K Mk23 pistol, he withdraws the suppressor from its protective cover. Then he screws the suppressor firmly in place on the pistol and drops the pistol into the holster making sure the pistol is seated properly.

Nikola and I walk silently to the latrine which is a quick walk east from the radio shack. The smell hits me as I open the canvas tent with a cardboard sign hanging by a piece of gray 550 paracord that says “open” scrawled in magic marker. I flip the cardboard sign over so it says “busy” and duck into the dark canvas shelter.

Digging my little Surefire flashlight out I see the latrine is a crude wooden bench with a rough hole over a large metal drain grate on the side of the highway. The rear of the shelter is comprised of a large green U.S. Army tank trailer with large yellow letters reading “non-potable water.”

I am thankful to see there is plenty of TP as I forgot to dig my secret stash out of my bag in my car. Even though it is U.S. Government Issue “John Wayne” continuous bulk roll TP it is better than the alternatives. I do my necessary business, thankful that some thoughtful soul left some Lysol hand sanitizer wipes and a squirt bottle of hand sanitizer. I step to the door of the latrine and make sure my flashlight is off and back in my pocket before stepping outside.

Once outside the fresh air is delightful, and I wait a few seconds for my eyesight, to readjust. While waiting for my eyes to adjust, I flip the cardboard sign back over and notice some joker has drawn a “no zombies allowed” circle sign with a sloping horizontal slash through a decent Romeroesque silhouette of a walking zombie with raised arms underneath the “open” letters.

Nikola is leaning against the side of the non-potable water tank trailer near the tire. After my eyes adjust to the dark, I signal him when I am ready. We walk back to the Radio Shack in silence.

Nikola enters the radio shack before me, taking off his pistol belt placing it back on the table. If he had to use the latrine, I guess he did so while I was occupied. It is much easier for the guys to play “bear in the woods,” than us ladies as Amy used to tell me.

Nikola strips quickly; folding his clothes neatly he places them on top of his boots. The boy is certainly nice looking, with a scrumptious ass. Not bad in the package department either, uncut I notice. Not shy either. He needs some manscaping, little too much hair for my taste, but certainly nice.

Nikola crawls into the ECWS bags with Carol who is still brushing her hair. Pulling the covers to his waist, he reaches into his pants pocket and pulls out a pack of Camel Turkish Royal cigarettes. Moving the covers, Nikola exposed Carol’s impressive tits – for a white chick she has some decidedly dark nipples and some of the largest areolas I have ever seen. She does not seem too concerned that her tits are bare now even when the cold makes her nipples pucker. Seeing her hardened nipples make mine hurt in sympathy.

Nikola breaks off the filter from the Camel cigarette tossing it on the asphalt, the movement catches my eye. Muttering to himself while patting his pants pockets, I bet I know what he is looking for.

I dig out my own pack of cigarettes and my Zippo. I hand Nikola my Zippo while I fish a cigarette out of my own. Nikola lights his cigarette with my Zippo and hands it back to me, and I use it to light my own cigarette. Nikola takes a deep drag on his cigarette nods his thanks to me and lies down next to Carol; who is still brushing her hair, God woman give it a break, serious OCD issue.

Nikola lies on his back smoking while I untie my boots, and take them off. I leave my socks on, but take my pants off. Folding my pants, I lay them over my boots, a habit to keep scorpions out of your boots when in the desert. I leave my shirt and tee shirt on, but take the field jacket off laying it on top of my pants. The shirt falls more like a mini skirt on me, and if either Carol or Nikola realize that I do not wear underwear both have the proper sense to not comment out loud. Thankfully, I went to my favorite spa little more than a week ago, so I am still respectably smooth, but I guess that is going to change, no more Brazilians for me. The thought of all that hair is not a pleasant one.

Crawling and sliding into the ECWS bag causes goose bumps to pop up on my skin, it is damned cold. However, the ECWS bag quickly starts to warm with my body heat. Looking beside me, Carol has (finally!) finished brushing her hair and reaching up she extinguishes the two candles by closing the shutters on the lamp.

I guess in the dark, Carol snuggles with Nikola as I watch the glowing tip of his cigarette move around and I hear him mutter something in Russian about her cold hands. She replies in Russian that she is trying to warm up. I wonder not with a little envy just where her hands are warming themselves.

We lay smoking in the dark in silence for a few moments. Whoever thought I would one day lie in the center of the fucking highway smoking a cigarette with a sailor and a Spetsnaz operator! God the world is fucked!

After a few minutes, Carol says, “Ruth you can have that sleeping bag when you leave tomorrow morning. It belonged to the other radio operator she was killed two days ago.”

I reply, “Thanks Carol, the field jacket was hers too wasn’t it?”

Carol does not reply, and after a moment, I thought she might have drifted to sleep.

We lay smoking in the dark, until Nikola, and I smash out our cigarettes on the asphalt. The heavy sleeping bag is extremely warm; it is the first time in days that I have been warm. The heavy scratchy wool blankets, Carol and Nikola, laid down to pad the concrete keeps the cold ground from sneaking into the bag which is nice even with the external Gortex waterproof bivy bag. The wool blankets offer some padding on the ground which I appreciate. My hips and knees used to kill me during field exercises, especially the week-long ground combat training held every year for the IDF. Thankfully, I never had the inclination to join one of the alpine units and go play in the snow on Mount Hermon.

About the time that my eye lids are getting heavy, and I start to drift asleep, Carol’s voice cuts through the dark. “You know there is not much left down here. My destroyer spent a couple weeks at sea attempting to keep zombie-filled ships and airplanes from landing. We used all of our missiles and five inch gun rounds sinking ships and blowing air liners out of the air, but they just kept coming. We watched a large, heavy merchant ship run aground, must have been doing around 20 knots. The ship went right up on the beach, went right through the Hotel del Coronado, and came to rest on the northern side of the strip in what used to be the marina. Before that ship came to rest, as a matter of a fact while it had been still plowing through the Hotel del, zombies were dropping off the sides. There was nothing we could do so we headed north. We pulled into Seattle and sat for a while but eventually we ran out of fuel but before that we were running out of food. The crew, well at least those that had not already jumped ship held a vote, and we decided to abandon ship. The skipper gave each of us a weapon, some ammo, wished us luck and we scattered. I considered heading south, but the Bay Area was hit especially hard with KCAP. So I headed north. I ran into Nikola and his platoon of Spetsnaz near Pike Place Market. They had stolen a U.S. Air Force Blue Bird bus but ran out of fuel near Pike Place Market.”

Nikola chimes in, “Yes, she was being chased by about 500 zombies running in sheer terror with an empty Beretta 9mm pistol and no magazines. She dropped the empty magazines, and not realize that every time she shot the noise attract more zombies.”

Carol replies, “Yes I was out of ammo and running for my life, the only thing I could think of was to run up hill because the steep ground slows the zombies.”

Once Carol finally shuts up, I quickly drift off to sleep. My sleep is pretty much undisturbed through the night except briefly I am awoken by Carol and Nikola making love. I was not aware someone could moan “yes” that many times in a row, I guess Carol liked what Nikola was doing. Despite the lovers, I drift back into a deep sleep.

  1. John permalink

    Great segment, although the first line that included “Radio Shack” with the first letter capitalized, made me think Ruth was entering to get her cell phone upgraded or to buy some batteries! =)
    I’m glad Carol gave the the sleeping bag.

    Before she leaves the soldiers, this seem to be a great opportunity to go thru her gear and engineer some cool trades.

    I’d like for Ruth to walk out with an extra Browning HP + mags, NV goggles, the LBE she asked about. Since she’s got AAC suppressors perhaps one of these soldiers has an AAC .300BLK lower for her AR-15 and a supply of ammo to up her range on the AR15 when needed. I know, that’s a stretch, but why not ask for the moon?

  2. Good suggestions John. Stupid Word auto correct capitalized Radio Shack as a place with a proper noun, rather than merly a spot where the radios sit. I was in the Navy before my brief stint in the Army, and Radio was a room. In the Army I still called the comms tent the Radio Shack.

    Any standard AR15 lower will work with AAC .300BLK, it is an upper that Ruth would need to swap on her lower.

    Some of your wishes will be granted, stay tuned, although this was written before the AAC .300BLK made its public appearance.

  3. BobOK permalink

    Good stuff!
    I feel I’m sitting in the tent with Ruth and company.
    Good work, and THANK-YOU.

  4. Biochemist from Scandinavia permalink

    Good stuff! Keep up!

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