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Zombie apocalypse fiction – Ruth’s Story #157 Shack’s Father is in the Camp #TEOTWAWKI #SHTF #WROL

July 26, 2015

We start walking towards the command tent at a brisk pace.

“Junior what’s goin’ on?” Shack asks as we walk together still holding hands.

Junior answers without looking at Shack.

“Your father is here under a sign of truce. He has taken control of the Adventist village and wants you back there with him. I shouldn’t say more, but I don’t think Sam and Doc are very happy about the situation.”

We walk in silence until we get to the command tent. The inside of the command tent, warmed by a large wood fire in a 55 gallon drum takes some of the chill off of the evening. I am thankful for the warmth in the tent.

Sam, Doc and Shack’s father sit around the folding card table usually used by Junior for administrative duties. I am struck by the differences between the two Rogers men. Both men are tall, but that is where the similarities end.

Shack’s father is slenderer than his son, and has a harder look. Shack is slightly taller, but is much thicker in the shoulders, arms and waist. Shack is much more muscular than his father. Both men exude an aura of strength and assuredness. The elder Rogers lacks Shack’s youth, but possess experience his son lacks.

Looking at Shack’s father sitting at the table, legs crossed in front of him I get the impression that the man is impatient, and wants to get this over with as soon as possible. Before Shack or his father can say anything, Sam speaks.

“Shack, please sit at the table. Ruth we are out of chairs, so if you could remain standing I’d appreciate it.” Sam points to an empty chair between Doc and him. Shack takes the offered chair without a word. I stand beside the warm stove, thankful for the heat sinking into my back through my jacket.

“Bob, since you asked for this meeting, why don’t you start,” Sam suggests.

Shack’s father speaks. “It’s simple; I want Shack to join me in the village. My only surviving son should be with me. You don’t respect him; shortening his name is disrespectful. You also allow the infected within your camp – displaying both a lack of leadership and poor decision-making. Once I took control, I shot all the infected and those that had anything to do with the infected. I also got rid of any niggers, Jews, wet backs and WOPs in the village. I shot all the infected lovers. The fact that you sit here with an infected nigger, shows you are not fit to lead.” Shack’s father practically sneers at Doc.

I can see Shack’s face flush with anger. “Dad, Doc’s not …” but Doc cuts him off by holding a hand up and shaking his head.

Shack swallows and tries again. “Dad, I prefer to be called Shack. It’s much easier.”

Shack’s father ignores him. He turns to look at Sam. “You booby-trapped the mortar Stryker. I lost several good men when it exploded. It also killed Carmine who was standing beside it. Saved me the trouble of shooting Carmine myself, because I thought he was sneaking people and livestock out of the village.”

Sam sighs. “Carmine was sneaking people and livestock out. He is also the one that warned us that you were in the village and attempting to pull a coup. The mortar Stryker was irreparable with a tranny that was shot. Carmine helped sneak the last of our people out. He also knew the mortar Stryker was rigged – we told him before we left. I think he chose to die. Maybe he felt guilty.”

Sam takes a sip of coffee. “While you were busy purging the village and taking over, you did not realize until it was too late that we were wise to you. We had already moved all the livestock and critical gear from the village. You can have the village, but we are not leaving you any equipment.”

Shack’s father is silent for a moment. Then he stands. “Meshach, come with me – now.”

Shack is silent for a moment. He shakes his head slowly. “No dad. I’m staying here.”

“Is your little Jewish slut worth that much to you that you would forsake your only living family member?” Shack’s father asks with an ugly sneer. I have been called much worse than a Jewish slut before, but Shack reacts as if slapped.

“Before Pastor committed suicide by swallowing a whole bottle of sleeping pills, drinking a bottle of vodka and tying a plastic bag around his head, he told me you’ve been fucking the little Jew bitch.”

I have never seen Shack turn so red. The veins stick out on his neck. His fists clench. Through clenched teeth, he speaks slowly.

“Dad, please leave. I never wish to see you again.”

Shack’s father, silently looks at him for a moment. “I’m disappointed in you, son. Is she really worth alienating yourself?”

“Dad, I don’t know you anymore. The man I knew was not a bigot, and not the cruel person you are.”

“You just didn’t know me that well,” Shack’s father responds.

“I wish that I did not know you now. I wish you had remained dead, and not killed my memories of the good family man. Please leave, you are dead to me.”

Bob turns to look at Sam. “This isn’t over,” he says with a sneer. He haughtily marches out of the tent, shoving past Shack. He does not even look at me.

Shack turns to leave and I step close to him. “Shack, Ruth please wait a moment. I’d like to speak with you both for a few minutes.” Sam reaches into the foot locker at his feet. He carefully places his old 45 back in it.

While Sam digs in his footlocker, Doc speaks for the first time. “Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”

“Doc, I do not think now is the time for you to quote Nietzsche,” Sam says. He places a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve 23-year-old bourbon on the table. “Everyone sit. After a meeting like that, we could use a drink.”

Sam pours everyone a very stiff shot of bourbon. I have never cared for bourbon, finding it too course for my tongue, but the warmth it imparts when the booze hits my stomach is very pleasant. This bourbon is actually quite good.

“I believe that Shack’s father feels that KCAP, in Nietzsche’s words, freed him from certain obligations of right and wrong.” Doc stares at his mug in silence, sipping bourbon.

“Fuck me that was difficult. Sorry Shack. Some of the Russians with a few convoy stragglers were the last to leave the Adventist village. The Russians left some surprises behind them. They were the last to arrive at Kayak Point and rejoin the convoy. We knew about the elder Rogers’ coup d’état, and the regrettable hanging of several of our former members. Carmine was able to sneak most of the convoy members out of the village before Shack’s father took full control.”

“Now that Shack’s father has crawled on to the tiger’s back – let’s see if he can ride it,” Doc quips.

Falling silent, Sam sips bourbon from a chipped, blue enamel coffee cup. We sip bourbon for a few minutes in silence. Sam offers a second snort, but I decline. About half of the bottle of bourbon is gone. We quietly wish Sam goodnight as we step outside into the early evening.

Kayak Point, before all of the trees were cut down must have been, at one time, quite beautiful. We see something moving over the water. Suddenly we hear the distinct noise of a low, fast-flying helicopter.

The helicopter, flying dark is difficult to see against the moonless, cloudy night. It suddenly banks, and a column of fire leaps out the side of the aircraft. The distinct, ear-splitting roar of a minigun shatters the night. Thousands of 7.62mm rounds shred the area near Shack and I, pelting us with dirt and chunks of rock.

  1. Jimbo permalink

    Good stuff, Bubba. One of my favorite reads. Keep up the good work.

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