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Heston spent an uncomfortable night on the cold, hard floorboards.
 


The farmhouse had lain empty since his grandparents died 12 years ago, their children gone to seek their fortunes in the city. Once they had owned most of the land round here, but as age caught up with them they had sold it off, gradually, till all that was left was the few acres it stood on.



Next morning Heston worked out his frustrations on the weeds.
What had happened to the house? Had it been looted? The provisions in his rucksack wouldn't last long.






Later that day some of his neighbours came to introduce themselves. He could tell by their green skin they were mutants, harmless mutants. Many of the survivors showed signs of genetic mutations, thankfully mostly harmless, like the ones in front of him. But there were other, more dangerous mutants out there. No one was sure what had actually caused the virus, some thought it was man-made, others of extra-terrestrial origin.

His neighbours introduced themselves as Ainsley and Lenox MacGregor, their parents owning the farm at the end of the lane, and gave him a run down of the neighbourhood. There was a small general store opposite the school which sold "everything you want, and alot of things you don't", and they hinted at some secret lots, it was all very mysterious. On enquiring about the furniture from his grandparents home he discovered all the furniture had been removed from the empty houses and stored in a depot at the far end of the valley, and several hours later, with the help of Lenox and his pick-up truck he had a few basic pieces to furnish his new home.











And by the end of the day he had himself a new companion, Quake...




... and a light, a single, solitary lamp, but it gave him hope in the darkness.
 
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romyhorse

December 2011

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