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Zombie apocalypse fiction – Ruth’s story #113 Little cannibal on a mine and breakfast with Brenda #SHTF #TEOTWAWKI

May 5, 2014

“She’s pregnant.”

“Doc, you’re shittin’ me.”

He sighs. “Nope, Sam, I wish. Fetal heartbeat very distinct from her own. For someone standing on a landmine, she’s very calm.”

Sam tosses his hands in the air. “Well, fuck me running. Can’t just kill her now can we? All right get little mother off of the damned mine without killing the three of you.”

Doc remains close to the little pregnant cannibal. “Child what is your name?”

“Nevaeh, but I liked it better when you called me Honey.”

“We’ll call you whatever you wish. Honey hold still while we try to get you off that mine. You understand how dangerous this is for all of us, don’t you?”

The little pregnant cannibal girl nods her head up and down. Sam motions for the Spets soldier to proceed.

Shack shrugs and looks at the young Spets soldier. I translate for Matvei, whom other than mastering profanity, speaks little English. After handing his weapon to Shack, Matvei pulls his small OD green nylon tool case out.

The rest of us clear off to a safe distance. I remain close enough that I am mostly safe from the mine but close enough so that I can translate for Matvei. Walking carefully, Matvei kneels beside the young mother. He speaks quickly in Russian, and crosses himself in a manner very similar to what Doc did a few moments ago.

“He says that if you pray, it might not be such a bad idea to do so now.” I translate for the young cannibal girl whom we will now call Honey. The next several minutes drag by with agonizing slowness as we all watch Matvei appraise the mine with careful probes. All of the tools Matvei uses are nonmetallic.

After digging carefully around the mine with a fiberglass knife-shaped tool, Matvei uses a small mirror and a flashlight to inspect the mine. Matvei looks at all sides of the mine. Lying flat on his stomach upon the damp ground, he puts his face nearly in the hole getting a better look at the mine. Matvei suddenly sits up on his knees and swears an impressive string of curses likely to curl paint.

Not bothering to translate the inspiring string of curses I inquire in Russian what is wrong. Matvei explains what is wrong, and I ponder how best to impart this information. Matvei motions for me to come closer. He shows me the problem and then asks a few pointed questions. After a brief discussion in Russian between us, Matvei shrugs his shoulders at me.

Brushing the mud off of my clothes I again seek a somewhat safe distance from the mine. With Shack and the colonels looking at me expectantly and conscious of Honey, who can probably hear what I am about the say, I decide that honesty is best.

“Matvei says that because of the little girl’s … I meant Honey’s strength; she has pressed down so hard on the mine that she has bent the arming prongs. He is not able to safe the mine. Because the main stem is so severely bent he cannot get the safety clip inserted. Matvei is unsure how to safe the mine otherwise.”

Sam looks at Doc. “Do you think that she has mutated into a cannibal sufficiently so that her reflexes are fast enough for her to leap off of that mine and survive?”

“Shit, Sam I don’t know. She might be able to outrun the bouncing mine. Or hell, she may even survive the blast if she can get far enough from it. We know that the cannibals heal very quickly. But I just don’t know.”

Doc pulls his canteen off of his web belt. He takes a long drink and nearly empties the green plastic canteen. I do not recognize the smell of the cold tea that he is drinking. Wiping his mouth on his hand while replacing his OD plastic canteen in its Vietnam-era holder, Doc looks at Honey carefully.

“I learned from that dead bastard Cauley that the ingested strain of KCAP utilizes a very similar antibody cross-reactivity as rheumatic fever does. She’s first generation, a K1, same as Thing 1. She might have accumulated enough viral bodies, and she might not have. Until she pulls her foot off that mine, we have no way of knowing if she will survive the blast. I’d say the choice is hers.”

“Is there any way that we can knock the explosive payload away or deflect it?”

I translate Shack’s question for the kneeling Matvei, who shakes his head no. As we stand around the child in the fading sunlight discussing her fate, it starts to lightly hail mixed with sleet. Shack and I need to get to sleep, but I am one of only three people in the camp who fluently speaks Russian and English.

I soundly kiss Shack and send him off to bed. There is nothing he can do here so there is no sense in making him lose more sleep. Matvei explains to me the most likely way for Honey to avoid most of the mine’s deadly shrapnel.

After explaining to Honey what she needs to do after she steps off of the mine, I quickly clear the area. I am very familiar with the effectiveness of AP mines and have no desire to see their destruction again.

Not hearing an explosion I figured that Honey was still standing on the mine trying to summon the nerve to release her foot. That is until Honey walks up to me escorted by Matvei and the colonels.

“I took my foot off and nothing happened” she explains. I translate for Matvei. He opens his mouth to reply when suddenly there is a large explosion in the forest. We run quickly to the spot and see that the mine that Honey was standing upon has exploded.

Matvei rattles off a string of excited Russian. I translate the gist of his excited babble. When she bent the mine’s stem, it delayed its explosion. I am sent off to bed. Realizing that I am starving and missed breakfast I instead head into the farmhouse. I find Shack sitting at the table shoveling chunks of dark tan pancakes into his mouth. I kiss him lightly on his stubbly chin before sitting down to my own pile of pancakes.

I have never eaten pancakes with oats, buckwheat, millet, quinoa, and brown rice flour in them. The pancakes are better tasting than a lot of other things that we have eaten lately. Heavier-textured than I would have usually preferred the pancakes are hardly low carb.

Carb counting is hardly a thought as I drown the plate-sized hot pancakes in warmed blackstrap molasses burying a shameless amount of real butter. The Adventists have several working butter churners. I never thought that I would taste real butter again.

I notice that the cook’s guard is on kitchen duty this morning. He pours a fresh cup of hot tea for me while offering Shack a refill, which he declines. Sipping the tea and expecting the horrid Spruce tip tea I am slightly surprised at what I taste. The unsweetened light green tea has a faintly grass-like taste with a hint of lemon.

Like a shameless Philistine, I gulp my first cup of tea down but slow down to savor the warmth in my hands of the second cup. Holding the warm cup like it is a living being gently cupped in my hands, I let the warmth of tea seep into my cold hands.

Sniffing the tea, I detect faint flowery scents with some citrus. Seeing my quizzical expression, Shack offers his opinion. “I don’t know sweetheart, but it beats that pine tree shit we’ve been drinking forever.”

“That pine tree shit, as you call it, has vitamin C in it, which you need unless you’d like to experience the nautical thrill ride of scurvy” Brenda explains entering the room with our Indian cook. Taking off their jackets and hanging their M16s on the coat rack, the ladies adjust their pistol belts and briefly join us at the table.

“You’re drinking one of my tea blends. A combination of common cudweed, Gnaphalium polycephalum, mixed with just a little bit of ‘Orange Balsam’ thyme.”

Brenda heads into the kitchen disappearing from sight for a bit. Shack and I finish our dripping mountain of pancakes. Lingering over a fresh cup of the citrusy tasting tea Shack and I are practically asleep when Brenda returns from the kitchen carrying a large metal kitchen pot followed by Junior.

Brenda startles Shack and I by slamming the swinging kitchen door open. Shack leaps to his feet his Serbu shotgun in his right hand. I find myself standing in a pistol crouch with my Browning Hi-Power in my hands safety off, finger on the trigger.

Brenda stands very still wide-eyed in shock. “Easy you two. You’re as nervous as long-tailed cats in room full of rocking chairs.” Brenda shakes her head at us like we are misbehaving children. Shack and I replace our weapons before sitting at the table again.

Brenda tosses some dried herbs into a small smudge pot and places it in the bottom of the large kitchen pot. Draping a towel over a large pot, Brenda directs Junior to cover his head and breathe deeply.

“Junior has asthma very badly. The smoke of dried Belladonna and Jimson Weed is helpful for such respiratory ailments. It might help him breathe easier. The smoke eases his lungs. The tea you’re drinking has a mild calming effect which is why you are feeling so sleepy. Everyone is so on edge.”

Shack and I polish off the last of our tea consigning a coughing Junior to Brenda’s care. Leaving the farmhouse we can hear Phyllis commence beating upon some Godforsaken piece of metal. Shack mutters something about a BFH, which I do not quite catch.

As Shack and I leave the farmhouse lawn seeking our bed, Honey, the pregnant cannibal escorted by three of our soldiers walks into the farmhouse. We notice that the little cannibal does not appear to be carrying any weapons.

“In the land of the unarmed, she with a stick is queen.” He mutters.

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4 Comments
  1. Bob permalink

    Good stuff.

    • Thank you Bob, I am glad that you enjoyed the chapter. I hope that you will continue to read my Ruth stories.

  2. medicine man permalink

    Great as usual.
    I never thought the baby cannibal could have been pregnant, excellent spin …
    I like the caring nature of the convoy by naming her “Honey” as she requested, I know I was a “Zero Tolerance” asshole about the cannibal clan but when it is a young girl, with child, things change.
    What will the baby be as far as the Kcap cannibal food chain (Hierarchy)? I know the girl ate her brother and became a cannibal , How did she become Kcap infected?
    Loving every installment Steve.
    Hotter than a well diggers ass in Mexico down here, 80 in the A.M. up to 90 plus degrees in the afternoon.

    Thanks for the great work!!!
    M.M.

    • I am glad that you liked the last chapter M.M.. Further details of Honey are included in tonight’s chapter.

      Mid 50’s here and raining typical spring for us. We have had an unusually wet spring with as much rain as we usually get all of this month in the first week.

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