wormwood, pt. 31

They had finally got into the city limits when Winston's car died. "We can walk the rest of the way. It'll be several hours but maybe it's for the best."

His efforts at optimism were, unfortunately, short-lived. His passenger said, "And what happens if we run into trouble on the road? Do we carry all your survival equipment or just hope your friend's got enough for us? What happens when we decide the car is a better shelter than the open road?"

"I guess we'd better be careful," conceded Winston. He wasn't as good at this as Rosalind. The best he could do was stick to the plan, and that was seeming more and more dubious. The idea of the boat, which once sounded like a ticket out of chaos for a while, sounded more like a ticket to becoming one of those shipwreck survival stories--without, he thought with a wry smirk, the survival part.

But waiting here wasn't going to work, and his passengers knew it. They each shouldered some of his gear and started walking through the broken city. But tempers were tight by now, and everyone was on edge. Winston tried to pick a route that would keep them away from other people, but he wasn't sure of the wisdom of this idea. What if they needed help?

But the more they walked, the more Winston found himself flinching at any sound. Stepping over piles of rubble or walking through dry grass seemed unbearably loud. On the rare occasion anyone spoke, he felt like the whole city could hear them. Maybe it could. Maybe the reason they hadn't seen anyone since leaving the car was because they were being watched, and a perfect ambush was being planned.

What felt like forever into the walk, they ran across a diner. The open sign was still blinking, and the door was unlocked. Inside, a waitress waved at them. Just outside the door sat a chalkboard bearing the legend: Special: A reprieve from the apocalypse!

As one does in strange dreams, they didn't stop to discuss or think about entering. They merely walked through the door.


Semicolons said...

I usually don't read blog-stories, but i figured what the hell. This was actually good. It seems to be the middle of the story (or at least past the threshold point of the plot) and i'm interested to read the beginning now. Your story better not be boring.

Also you (unlike Carl) have not raped the usage of semicolons. It was carl's unrelenting use of a dash in place of a semicolon that got the whole semicolons thing going in the first place. One can only remain quiet about the proper use of semicolons for so long.

Your diction is good, and the flow is good as well. There are no jarring transitions so far. hopefully the rest of the story lives up to his part

Rob said...

Most of the blog is stories. They are rarely true stories--I live a very undramatic life.

Run a search on the blog for "wormwood" and the rest of the posts should pop up (if you hadn't already figured that out). Hopefully you like the rest of it as well. Sorry it's not easier to read (blogs make this sort of thing a little tricky).

This is the first one I wrote after realizing I could write long stories without those stories hijacking the blog for months on end.

Do let me know what you think. This one is something of an experiment. If it works out I will probably do more of these in the future. (If it doesn't I will probably still do them, but not nearly as much, revising the formula etc etc.)