Sun, 11 January 2009 - 7:50 pm

Mirage

We’re finding out why there’s no-one left here.  It has been sucked dry and left to pucker under this strange orange sky.

We tried three vehicles, but none of them would start.  They coughed sadly, but they wouldn’t start.  It took us a while to discover that their fuel has already been siphoned away.

Our supplies are running low.  There’s no water left at all now, and not much food.  We went into a couple of stores, but there was only dregs left.  We even went into a few homes here, only to be repulsed by the smell from the fridges.  Most of them had already been pilfered, the front doors broken in, kitchen cupboards listing emptily.  We managed to find one cupboard that had been missed, and that gave us something for dinner.

It’s clear now that whoever was left here has moved on in favour of finding food and water elsewhere.  I can’t imagine what place would be any different to this, though.

 

I never, ever want to eat a can of cold food again.  I will, I just don’t want to.  I’m so sick of swallowing something clammy and slimy.  It’s hard to know if my stomach is turning in revulsion or hunger these days; it all feels the same.  I wish my tastebuds would realise that any food is good right now.

We talked over our small, slick dinner, mostly so that we didn’t have to look at the food and wonder what the hell.  We’re going to push on again tomorrow, try to get out of this area.  We spent so much time searching that we made almost no progress at all today.

We’re so close now.  If we walk and don’t stop, we should make it to the hospital before the rain comes again. 

I’m almost afraid of getting there.  Afraid of what we’ll find.  Afraid of what we won’t find.  The hospital feels like a myth, feels like a mecca we’ll never reach.  It’s our carrot.  It’s all the guidance and purpose we have.  It’s our hope.

We’re so close that I can’t sleep.  I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop, for a crevasse to open up between us and that illusory place we’re all striving for.  We have to get there.  It was the last purpose of a man who melted in the rain; it’s the last hope for a child who won’t wake up any more.

Just one more day.  For all our sakes.

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