Monday, 8 June 2009 - 10:41 pm


Last night was awkward. I didn’t want to talk about what happened and ended up going to bed early.

I think the others talked about it. I’m curious to know what was said, but I’m glad I wasn’t there for it. I huddled in my blankets, trying to warm them up, and told my mind to stop running around on the subject. I was all right. I wasn’t even hurt. But my body was so keyed-up about it that it took forever to unwind. Inside, I was numb; I don’t remember feeling anything at all.

I didn’t fall sleep until after Matt and Dillon came to huddle with me and I finally felt warm. It sounds weird, but there’s nothing sexy about fully-dressed people attempting to share body heat. Everyone was feeling the chill, and by morning we had Nugget and Thorpe buried in with us as well.


When we clambered out of the blankets, pulled on our outer layers and went out to the showroom, we discovered just how bad it had got outside. It had stopped raining sometime in the dark hours, and by the time dawn came around, the world outside was frosted. Ice gleamed fitfully from every surface, coated the vehicles in the yard and the sign out by the road. It spidered in from the edges of the windows and skated over the concrete. The doors broken in the shambler attack had leaked under the recent downpour, and there was a skin of ice across part of the showroom floor.

The weirdest part was the reflected orange light, as if everything had been soiled. I’ve never seen a real frost like that – it doesn’t get that cold here, not ever, not even in the depth of winter. But even to me it didn’t feel right; I wanted it to be white, pristine and shining. Not this dirty, ruddy approximation of how winter’s touch should look.

Our breath steamed in front of our faces as we stopped and looked at each other. I could feel it snapping at my nose and cheeks. I shivered and hugged myself, and we were all wondering what we were supposed to do next. We certainly couldn’t get out of here in that; it’d take us ages just to chip the ice off the vehicles, and I didn’t want to think about starting them in those conditions.


Then the Wolverines stumbled out from where they’re bedded down. They looked particularly drawn and grumpy. At first I wondered if it was because of what happened yesterday, but only Kirk spared me a glare.

His face looks awful. They’ve barely dressed the cut and it makes my stomach twist every time I see it. There’s a part of me that can’t believe that I did that to someone, not even someone who tried to attack me. I’ve been in fights before, I’ve hurt people before, but I’ve never used a knife. And I’ve never had to look at the aftermath of it.

I think it was the cold that was making them snappish. They wouldn’t say and we didn’t care enough to ask outright. Oil and water, that’s us, though I couldn’t say which was which. I supposed we’re the oil; if anyone has acid in them, it’s them. Perhaps that’s just me being mean, though.


No-one really knew what to do today. The ice melted sluggishly as the day wore on and the orange globe in the sky struggled higher. It was hard to think about going out – if things weren’t slick with ice, they were wet with the melt. No-one really wanted to find out how much the acid bit at low temperatures. It was tempting to wonder if it could be clean, but that seems like magic and we weren’t willing to test it.

So we were cooped up for most of another day. The two groups kept to themselves by mutual consent until the ice was all gone and it seemed safe to go out. A small group went in search of blankets and warm clothes; we all know that this winter is only going to get worse. They didn’t find much, but enough to make a difference – we’ll sleep warmer tonight.


It wasn’t until the rain started again that I remembered what I had been looking for when Kirk caught up with me yesterday. The memory made my throat close and my hands shake, but I was determined that he wasn’t going to stop me from doing this. It seems more important than ever now. I’m not foolish enough to try to go on my own again, though.

It’s late enough now; the Wolverines should have settled down for the night. We should try now, I think.

It’s time to tell the boys that I think I know where to find a gun.