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Zombie apocalypse fiction – Ruth’s story #116 Settling into life on the farm with cannibals #SHTF #TEOTWAWKI

May 14, 2014

Settling into life on the farm with cannibals.

Most of the supplies taken from the cannibal’s Walmart were ones able to survive the fire. We recovered quite a few mechanic’s tools and other tools made entirely of metal. Stripping the dead cannibals is a nasty task, but did provide our group with several pairs of heavy Carhartt work wear.

Brenda’s mushroom lessons are paying off. The lads are mostly gathering the various Boletes species of mushrooms which are some of the safest and easiest mushrooms for the amateur hunter to gather. Brenda has also taught how various mushrooms are used to make vibrant dies for fabric. With the amount of rescued livestock on the farm, there should be plenty of fiber for making clothes eventually.

Our Scouts recently returned with several lamas and a few sheep that somehow survived. One of the hardest things to do is guard the animals who appear as a quick meal to people hungry for anything. Explaining to a starving man that we are not eating the sheep because we will need the wool for warm clothes means nothing to him, he wants to eat now.

We have met few survivors in the last few days. Most see our lads standing by the gate, now reinforced with an earth mound pill-box, machine guns at the ready and silently walk past. Occasionally a few survivors will stop to ask for food or water which our guards politely refuse and encourage the people to keep moving.

Our methanol production is still slow, but since the Adventists surprised us with a complete and functional biodiesel system, methanol is in high demand. Now our Scouts are scouring every fast food joint (Shack’s term – not mine) and restaurant for cooking oil and grease.

Sometimes our Scouts have to clear zombies out of the restaurant but the locations are well scouted in advance, with enough precautions taken to make sure that no one but the zombies die. Another item in dire need is good quality lye, in particular brands such as Red Devil. The Adventists have a methanol recovery system built into the commercial biodiesel processor.

One of the byproducts of the biodiesel process is glycerin which gets used in soap and various lotions. Right now we do not have enough methanol for the biodiesel processor. Our old M35 trucks can run on straight vegetable oil, but it is not good for them. I suppose neither is running the used motor oil good for the old engine, but it is something that at least lets us drive.

Our concern is keeping enough diesel, whether bio or petrol, for the snow plow, HEMTTs and the Strykers. The three vehicles are very picky about the fuel they burn and cannot survive on the shitty fuel blends that we feed the M35s. Some of the lads have taken to riding horses with the Adventists helping.

I have no interest in getting on a horse now. In hindsight as I transcribe my notes in Iain’s bunker, I suppose that I should have taken some lessons in horse riding. As it was, I did not ride a horse until I started living with Iain.

Back to the past.

Since Shack and I are night crew still, the only time that we get to interact with the rest of the company is at the breakfast table. The discussions sitting around the breakfast table were very interesting and enlightening. I started taking notes at these breakfast meetings as you never knew what the discussion topic was going to be.

While no one wanted to discuss the elephant in the room about Scarecrow and his lady, any other topic was latched onto with enthusiasm. The earliest breakfast story telling involved Sam. I am not sure what the exact question was or who asked as Shack and I walked into the middle of the discussion.

Sam looked up, pausing speaking, as Shack and I entered the dining room. Other than the usual suspects including Junior, Jeff, Doc Jamal, Terrance, Shack and I were the only ones that were up early this morning.

“No, I never had any children. I have had three wives, but we never had children. Some of my ex-wives had children from previous relationships, but none was from me. When I came back from ‘Nam, minus an eye, I had a lot of problems.” Sam takes a sip of the soothing tea.

“Not much use for a one-eyed man. I took to drinking and feeling sorry for myself. Although the Army retired me as a full colonel, lacking an eye I found that it was difficult to get work. This was in the early ‘70s, and there was not a lot of jobs to begin with. Less for a man with one eye and no skills outside the Army.”

Sam sighs deeply. “I should have applied myself, gone back to school, but all I did was wallow in self-pity. I took a lot of it out on my first wife who got sick of it and wisely left my drunk ass. I met the second wife drunk off of my ass in a dive bar. We were codependent drunks, and that lasted a while, until she found someone else.”

Sam pauses as the cook’s guard and helper sets a heaping plate of pancakes and scrambled eggs in front of Shack and myself. Shack and I did in while Sam continues after a refill of tea.

“Man I miss coffee. Anyway I moved back to Washington state in the early ‘80s. Got a job with a natural gas pipeline company. Got sober too. Shopping at the Commissary on post one day, I run into Doc. We had lost touch with each other after ‘Nam and I went into my tailspin. We reconnected, and Doc got me into a couple of programs where they were attempting some new technologies that might replace my lost eye.”

While Shack and I shovel pancakes dripping warmed blackstrap molasses and warm scrambled eggs into our mouths, we are intently listening to Sam.

“During one of those VA visits, where I was sitting there with this gaping hole in my head open for everyone to see in walks the most beautiful mature woman I’d ever seen. She was in her early 40s then but could have passed for mid-20s easy. She was a Rubenesque beauty with wavy shoulder-blade length brown hair. Statuesque standing nearly six-foot in bare feet, in her business suit and modest high heels she was easily over six-foot. I was smitten immediately, lost in her hazel eyes.”

He takes a sip of the tea again refilling his cup from the teapot on the table.

“She had lost her husband in ‘Nam and never remarried. Despite my already falling madly in love with her, it took her a while to warm up to me. She had two grown children both in college and had never dated after her husband died. She was one of the HR admins at the Seattle VA and saw lots of wounded soldiers, so my injury did not faze her in the least. After weeks of my begging, she finally consented to having coffee with me in the cantina in the basement of the VA hospital.”

With Shack and I practically falling out of our chairs due to sleep deprivation, Sam looks at the time on his watch and stands.

“The rest of the story how I met my third wife will have to wait for another morning. As for the story of my first zombie kill, well that is a tale for another day as well.”

Who do you think Sam’s first zombie kill will be?

  1. Bob permalink

    “Who do you think Sam’s first zombie kill will be?”
    His 3rd wife?

  2. medicine man permalink

    First of all… Major kudos to Bob. Honestly, I would not have caught that hint about Sam’s first Zombie kill.
    Keep on with the good stuff Steven, I like the way you are telling but not quite telling how Ruth ended up with Lain.
    That tells me (how about some help Bob) that Shack bit the dust, along with the majority of the convoy. Maybe everyone did not die, it seems that there was a large problem and Ruth ended up in Lain’s bunker, finishing up the story.

    I have a bad back (Major, times ten, bad back) and I once rode horses in North Georgia with my Aunt and cousins. What a horrible mistake on my part. I was messed up for a week after the ride, even though the ride was awesome and the sights were of those that you could only enjoy on horseback, I will never do that again.

    Thanks for the good work. If I ever see a bald chick with black teeth and fingernails, I will give her a wide berth.
    Thanks again and thanks to Bob for the eye opener.


    • Thanks M.M. I am glad that you continue to enjoy the story. I am glad that Bob mentioned some of the earlier chapters as it was a good refresher.

  3. Bob permalink

    Hi Medicine Man,
    I will not pretend to answer for Steve, but…

    I had to look back for an edit, or change to this story. I think it happens here. A hint of more to come. And I have followed since the first entries. Good stuff!

  4. medicine man permalink

    Thank you Bob!!, for the response, and the hookup to times in the story of Ruth that allude to scenarios that pass some of our thinking (Me in General, I sometimes can’t see the forest for the trees).

    I am happy to know that Steven has many Fans of his awesome tale, and those who take the time to go on line and comment as you have.

    I appreciate your response and I wish that many of the folks who don’t post as you and I do, will show the work of the author
    a bit of ” You go man” .

    Speaking for other readers without their approval…..

    We really enjoy your efforts in the creation of a story that moves past the typical Survivor V.S. Zombie V.S Creeped out survivors that have lost their humanity and have gone feral.

    I want you to know that you have done a fine job of this tale / story of Ruth and the excellent characters living this life in TEOTWAWKI.

    Each chapter is a delight.

    We got a little cool front last night (Friday) 60 degrees and a good wind pushing it through. It is now in the mid 80’s (Saturday) and I am sure we wont get anything else but heat coming our way as we move forward into summertime.
    I see you guys are still getting a lot of rain up your way, please don’t get caught up in a mudslide while hunting, You are a really excellent person and I would hate to lose you because of a Mother Nature event.
    I have just had a row of Bush Beans pop up and am waiting for my Peppers and Potatoes to break the surface.
    So Fla does not have great soil so I use Miracle Grow soil and bagged topsoil to get my crops moving.
    Do you grow stuff? I mean Legal type Ha! ha!

    Best to you and yours,

    • Thanks M.M I am glad that you continue to enjoy the story.

      I believe that most authors can write a never ending series of zombie kills, and a parade of gruesome characters.

      I have many gruesome characters but I try to make sure they have a purpose other than just being gruesome.

      Our temps have been warm in the mid-50’s which is typical for this time of year. We hit the low 80’s which is unusual for us this time of year. It has cooled off back to the 50’s which is much more to my liking. I don’t mind the rain as it keeps things cooler and green.

      My wife really has the green thumb. I do grow hops for my beer brewing, and I tend to my small orchard. Otherwise the wife is the gardener in the family.

      I never had much use for pot even now that it is supposedly legal. Never done the stuff nor have an interest in it.

      Take care, work has got me busy so I missed the Freaky Friday post. I need to get some time on the computer to get ahead a little bit.

  5. medicine man permalink

    Gotta laugh at the similarities and differences between us.
    My lovely wife couldn’t grow a weed!!
    I am the green thumb person at this abode and gave up any interest in pot a couple decades ago, I would like to have a portion of the dollars spent when I did partake…
    Windy as all get out, down here with 80’s during this wind event we
    are having.

    Thanks for your efforts and the end results.

    • Well my wife can grow plenty of weeds, but she does a real fine job of growing sugar snap peas, white radishes, and tomatoes.

      We have to plant the tomatoes late or we do not get enough heat for them to ripen properly. Same with any pepper.

      One year my wife planted the bell pepper too close to the jalapenos and God those were some hot bell peppers!

      We are still warm, in the mid 70s to low 80s with lots of rain. Warmer and wetter than usual for this time of year.

      Monday’s chapter will be a little longer to make up for the missed Freaky Friday post. Been busy with the spring sales at work.

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