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Zombie apocalypse fiction – Ruth’s Story #179 Face to Face with Flower & Resisting the Urge to shoot her in Baker City, OR. #TEOTWAWKI #SHTF #WROL

June 19, 2016

Seeing my actions, causes Flower to pause a moment and then continue her angry walk, but at a less-threatening pace. She spreads her hands, showing that Flower is not carrying any weapons in her hands. I lower the muzzle of my Galil towards the ground, taking my finger off of the trigger, but leaving the safety in the off position.

The look on her face would cause thunderclouds to form over her head in the old cartoons. In our previous visits, Flower and I have been cordially civil, but I always got the impression that if it were not for Iain, Flower would have me killed.

Flower stomps right up to me and gets in my face. “You turned one of my guards in to a sprinkler, you bitch! Now when he pisses, it comes out the side. I don’t appreciate you hurting my guard.”

Stepping closer, I bend forward slightly so that our noses nearly touch. “Keep the nasty little fucker from peeping into my people’s rooms, and I will not have cause to harm them.”

“He was just looking; you can’t blame him for that.”

At least with my back to the wall, no one can circle around behind me. Glancing across the courtyard I see Iain watching closely.

“Flower, I don’t give a shit that he looked, what I took an exception to was his comments and what he would like to do to her. I disabused him of the idea.”

She crosses her arms and looks perplexed. “You what?”

Fuck! Inbred, illiterate and stupid little cunt. “I made him realize that his plans for my friend were not a good idea.”

Flower is missing most of her front teeth, and has thin, badly scarred lips. Her left marled eye is completely blind. Like most clan members, Flower shaves her head, not for fashion but for lice control.

She is not the first Flower, but only the most recent in a matriarchal society. I know that she hopes that her oldest daughter takes her place someday, but depends on if she is tough enough to take leadership of the clan. The current Flower killed her mother, the previous Flower, taking the throne.

Looking at her guards, Flower shrugs her shoulders. Realizing that I will not yield, she takes a step backwards. In a mollified tone she asks, “Please don’t hurt any more of my guards. If you have a problem, come to me.”

She looks around the courtyard, the clan queen surveying her realm. Seeing red-head playing with the children she turns back towards me. “Are you leaving, the red-headed woman with us? If she is for sale or trade, we would be most interested in purchasing her.”

I wonder if Flower means the royal we, and if she has carnal plans for red-head. I also wonder what the fuck this little sewer rat has of worth to trade for a healthy, beautiful woman.

I have watched Flower slitting the throats of captured enemy clan members, dancing in the arterial spray of blood, her body adorned with the fresh, bloody scalps of her victims.

I used to think of Flower and her clan as feral children until I watched her butcher her helpless, captured enemies.

I do not trust this little savage. I believe if it were not for the fact that Iain and I posses quite a few guns, and grenades, Flower would have attacked us. First time we encountered Flower’s clan is because they were attracted to our animals.

The survivors of the old world hunt and eat wild horses and mules, as well as any other formerly domesticated animal that has the misfortune to cross their path.

I inhale preparing to give Flower a good ass chewing. Clan queen or not, I am not a fucking flesh peddler.

“Flower, we have told you before that we don’t sell people. We intend taking red-head with us when we leave, but if she wants to stay, that is up to her.”

I did not realize that Iain crossed the courtyard. With his long legs, he crossed the courtyard quickly. I see that Iain has one of our water spectral analyzers tucked underneath one arm. What the fuck is he doing now?

In Hebrew, Iain says to me, “Easy Ruth, honey. Don’t go meshugga on me. We could probably shoot our way out, but the cost would be too dear.” It amazes me how quickly Iain picked up Hebrew as well as Yiddish.

Flower puts on her most beautiful smile. Turning towards Iain, she gives him what I am sure she thinks is a seductive pose.

“Iain, dear, I could use a healthy adult woman in my clan. I have plenty of studs, but few mares able to give healthy children.”

Standing between us, I take a moment studying Flower. She is short, standing perhaps just a hair less than five feet tall.

Flower wears a long-sleeved, faded Levi jacket with fleece lining, and tattered, Levi jeans. Ripped, black Converse sneakers cover her feet, patched with duct tape. O.D. green parachute cord laces hold the old sneakers on her feet, a gift from Iain our last trip.

Flower carries a pair of mother of pearl handled polished nickel 1911s chambered in 38 Super. Flower’s pistols ride in a custom, black leather, double shoulder holster rig with polished sterling silver conchos. The black leather has faded to gray in several places, and is cracked. The silver conchos are green with corrosion. I know that Iain offered rendered bear lard, which we use on our leather, but Flower apparently cannot be bothered to maintain her gear.

A matching black leather belt also in poor condition circles her narrow hips. Securing the belt is a dented and corroded, Texas-dinner platter sterling silver belt buckle. Her belt buckle holds a pair of North American Arms, micro revolvers chambered in 22 WMR. She only possesses five rounds of 22 WMR for her mini revolvers. I am not sure how she has divvied those rounds between the two pistols.

Flower’s belt has pistol ammo loops, but only three loops on her left hip are occupied. Several of the loops are split from dry rot and will not hold shells anymore.

I know that Flower has very few rounds for her guns, with the last full 1911 magazine presently in each gun. I know that Flower wants rounds for her guns above all else, which is how I know exactly what she is armed with.

Flower also wants guns and enough ammo to wage war on the neighboring tribes (or clans, they cannot seem to decide whether they are tribes or clans). Iain and I, although we have enough ammo that we could spare some, we are reluctant to arm Flower’s fighters.

Dumping a lot of arms on one bunch would seriously unbalance the area. Very few weapons carried today actually have ammo in them. It is rare, such as when we took the wagon, that the man actually possessed ammo for his guns. Most guns today, empty of ammo, are carried for scare tactics, rather than as a weapon.

A few times in the past, ambushers and highway robbers received a very nasty surprise when they assumed that the guns Iain and I carry were empty. It is quite unlike the early days when there seemed to be an unlimited amount of ammo and weapons.

Flower’s four male guards are the largest men in the tribe. Rumored to be her lovers as well as her guards, the four guards are well fed and receive the best of everything. I wonder if Flower occasionally replaces a guard or if there is a guard retirement plan.

Each of Flower’s hand-picked guards carry a leather embossed, wooden circular shield and a shotgun fed reloaded black powder shells. There is no standard uniform, with the exception of the shield; the weapons choice is up to the guard.

The guard with the over-under shotgun carries a large, rusty knife strapped to his leg. The knife is in bad shape, but I can still make out Wüsthof on the blade.

One of Flower’s guards carries a disreputable, Chinese-made Remington 870 clone. Two of her guards carry double barrel, side-by-side shotguns. The fourth guard carries a rusty, over under with a silvery receiver. All shotgun barrels are cut as short as possible, the stocks crudely chopped into some vague shape that slightly resembles a pistol grip.

Cheap nylon and homemade bandoliers carry the black powder reloads which have proven to be anything less than completely reliable. I know Iain taught them a few of the ways to reload shotgun primers using the white phosphorus part of the heads from old strike anywhere matches.

Iain provided a few strike anywhere white tip matches from his stash in the bunker for shotgun primer making, but it takes 3-4 matches per primer. It would not take long to exhaust Iain’s carefully vacuum sealed stash of old white phosphorus strike anywhere matches.

Strike anywhere matches and even matches of any kind are nearly as dear as TP, 22 long rifle ammo, and Twinkies.

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