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Friday, November 26, 2010

"Bugout Versus Hunker" Short Story by Christopher Young - Chapter 5

===CHAPTER FIVE===
Butch decided this was a good time to kindle a fire,
and get everyone warmed up. The twins had gone a
couple paces farther into the woods, to perform the
morning piddle. The came back, looking a bit cold
and pale. The daughter asked where was the bathroom.
Butch told her there wasn't a bathroom, and she
would have to play camper. So, where's the TP. Butch
replied that it is in her bug out bag. She knew there
wasn't any. She had used the roll of TP for applying
make up. She went and started to unzip Butch's bug
out bag. He knew there was some left over after his
hunting trip, so he didn't say anything. She'd been
through a lot. She didn't find any TP, but did find
a couple McDonalds paper napkins. Well, better than
being stinky.

Butch's wife woke up, with much the same question.
She had used her roll of TP for the twins, when they
the bad cold a couple months ago, and she ran out of
kleenex in the house. She wordlessly tramped off into
the woods, behind her daughter. They would make the
most out of it, until Dad came to his senses.

Butch reached into his already open pack, and pulled
out a Piney Woods fire log. Slipped out his Buck one
handed opening knife, and cut off a big chunk of wax
and sawdust. Reached into his pocket again for his
Zippo ligher. Knelt down to sweep some snow away and
get the fire started. Surely, a fire and some warmth
would make the family's mood improve. About 50 sparks
later, he realized his Zippo was dry. Back to the
pack, and look for the squirt bottle of Ronsonol, to
fill the lighter. The Ronsonol bottle was dry. Well,
the stuff does evaporate. Butch returned to the tent,
to search for another lighter. He didn't have one, he
remembered it ran out of butane  while he was hunting,
and planned to get another one. The kids weren't allowed
to have matches or lighters. He opened his wife's pack.
Plenty of sandwich fixings, but no lighter. She probably
used it for the gas grill at home. Well, never mind. He
had some gas in the gascan at the truck, and probably
another lighter.

Charles family was enjoying the day home from school
and work. Charles was nervous, he had seen it blowing
in the wind for a while. The government and the world
was getting more unstable as time went on. The govern-
ment kept promising to fix all the various things that
were wrong, but nothing seemed to be gettting better.
They were spending more and more money on recovery, but
there seemed to be precious little recovering going on.
Early in the crisis, Charles had bought a bunch of
canned food. He had brought some home a few cans at
a time. His wife wasn't sure if that was a good idea,
money was tight. He had also encouraged her to bring
home extra food each time she went to the store. They
built a secret room in the cellar, it was behind a
piece of panelling, so it wasn't ovbvious. From what
he could figure, he had about six months food in the
cellar. If they used everything carefully.

The Samurai Sam web site had focused mostly on weapons.
Of course, Sam was interested in the Martial arts. Ninja
techniques, and swords and so on. He had also encouraged
all his web page readers to buy any and all fire arms, and
plenty of ammunition. Charles found this interesting. He
had bought a .22 caliber rifle, and a couple boxes of
ammuntion. But, most of his prep money went into food.

Charles took a moment to mentally review the preps
that he had in the house. The wood stove took a couple
thousand dollars to have it installed. But, it had
provided a bit of heat for the house. He wasn't sure
if the fuel bills were cheaper, after all he did have
to pay for the fire wood to be delivered. He calculated
it one time, and found out that he'd been saving about
$500 a year in fuel bills. Enough to pay for the wood
stove after a few years. And it was so much fun, the
kids said it felt warmer when the wood stove was going.
In that regards, it was a real benefit. The food would
hold out for a while. The water was a concern. He had
filled the couple barrels. and there was the creek that
ran a couple hundred yards from the house. They would
be okay if the mutant zombies didn't come to town on
motor cycles.

Butch as also mentally reviewing his preps. The tent had
saved them last night. The snow had continued to fall,
about another two inches. They had a couple days of MRE,
if he could get a fire started. Yeah, they could be
eaten cold. But, they were so much better when warmed.
And the twins were looking rather cold and pale. He
decided to go back to the truck, and see what else he
could salvage. Some fuel for the lighter, and any other
things like sleeping bags.

Butch turned to his wife, and told her that he was
going back to the truck. The twins perked up. Going
home, now? No, Butch explained. He needed some more
stuff out of the truck. The twins were both pale and
starting to shiver in the cold. He explained to them
that he had to go back and get some stuff to light
up the fire. Hot food in a few minutes. The boys
looked a bit more encouraged, at the thought of
hot food.

Butch tried to remember which direction was the truck.
It had been dark when they arrived, last night. And
the  snow had covered their tracks. He guessed, and
went out in one direction. After about a hundred feet,
he followed his foot prints back to the tent. He then
went out in a different direction. By the next 100
feet, he was panting with exhaustion. The heavy boots,
and uneven terrain were wearing him out. His wife
noticed, and suggested he take one of his heart pills.
He said no, he'd be all right. What he didn't say was
that he had left his prescription medicine home. He
had an older bottle of pills in his bug out bag. But,
he'd taken them on the hunting trip, and the bottles
were empty.

A third trip out to find the truck went in the correct
direction. He traveled slowly the 100 feet to the edge
of the woods. Looking out over the snow was blinding.
The scatter from the sunshine made it nearly impossible
to see. What was that? No! It couldn't be!