After the End

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It happened so quick, it seemed like everything was going along, we were getting ready for preschool with our four year old son, Damien, I worked for the local parks department and we had just finished our summer activities. My wife, Jessica, Damien and I were soaking in the last bits of summer before those pacific northwest rains brought the cool of fall. We had gone camping to the rocky beaches of southwest Washington for that weekend. I still remember Jessica’s smile next to the waves and Damien’ sandy face. But when we got back to our house, there was no more time for smiles.

COVID had mutated, changed. I was called into the emergency operations center to help with communications and spent my first two days back just trying to keep up. The news was sudden and bleak. The Coronavirus had escalated, was transmitted through some other vector than water droplets and turned exceptionally lethal towards men. By the first day, reports of massive deaths at hospitals, public transit and grocery stores. Minimal exposures turned deadly with the victims having just enough time to get home before dying in their beds, coughing.

Jessica was terrified – she tried to keep calm at the house with Damien but he knew something was wrong. He was fussy and stubborn and had no interest in television or toys. I came home late the first day but by the second day, as our local hospital shut down and death tolls reached the thousands in our county alone, I knew I must stay at home.

The third day blurred into the fourth and the fifth. I put out notices to shelter in place but my emails to coworkers remained unanswered and social media was a terrifying mess. The President hadn’t been seen in days, there was no federal response and all we could do was stay in and pray the lights stayed on.

By the end of the week, we needed food. Jessica went out, fully covered to try and protect herself. She came back an hour later, the store was a mess but she managed to grab rice, some canned goods and plenty of beans. I turned off the computer and phone and we tried to pass the time.


I don’t remember what happened next but I do remember the black vans. Government, probably from the border patrol, going house to house. They knocked on our door, I answered to find someone in a containment suit asking if there were any dead in the house. I said no. He looked relieved and perplexed but quickly made the rounds to our neighbors. We tried to keep Cy from the windows but we saw his stretcher making several trips.

I was unsure if I still had a job. I tried to get someone on the phone and ended up speaking with the City Clerk. She couldn’t get anyone to pick up either so she had stopped by City Hall. She found one of the inspectors in his office, dead, and that was it. No one else had come in, everyone else was staying home from the shelter in place order. Her husband was still alive although she lost her mother and some extended family.

We discussed what to do but at the end of the day, what was there to do? This was so beyond our scope. We needed police and federal assistance. I told her to call if she needed anything.

The days turned dark. Some days I worked from home, some days we just played cards and tried to pass the time. Eventually the details came out, 9 out of 10 men had been killed by the virus, the government was in shambles trying to pick things up, services had stopped and fear set in. The virus had dispersed, whatever had happened, it wasn’t transmitting anymore, but small comfort after the carnage we’d witness.

In December, the federal government made its decision. It was too hard to feed and protect so many people left distant. They were converting Seattle into a large scale housing community, with the surrounding area to serve the people living there. They weren’t sure about jobs and connection to the community but the offer was simple, if you want to eat and be safe, come register to live in Seattle. We can’t guarantee anything if you stay out in the County.

Jessica and I were torn. Safety for Damien? Would we be safe? In classic married fashion, we had swapped opinions a couple of times. The tipping point was, of all things, her sister. Her sister had lost her husband to the virus and was trying to raise her son by herself. Her son and Damien were the same age and best friends. We couldn’t separate them. We called her up and talked it through.

That night I took an evening walk, as I often did, through the overgrown raspberry fields near our home. The farms had long since abandoned them and the quiet stillness was refreshing. I missed people. I missed friends. I missed my old life. It was weird no longer hearing the buzz of airplanes or the distant sound of traffic. Sure there were some but all our neighbors had either packed up and left or died. I sat on an old stump and stared up at that pale cold moon.

I had been a pretty devout man before the virus. I was wiccan, as was my wife. We honored the cycle of the seasons, danced around the maypole in spring and leapt over the Samhain fire bahis siteleri in fall. I tried to find that voice of the Goddess that had been with me since I was fifteen. That had grown within me as I found my path.

And there it was. If I wanted a new life, I would need to grow it myself. I skipped back home, almost breaking to run across the field to my house. I paused to collect myself, after all, it wouldn’t do any good to scare Jessica before trying to persuade her. But I knew that I must.

We were going to stay. We were going to try to homestead and make our own way.


The first step was moving my sister-in-law, Sarah, nearby. We took an inventory of the houses on our street. Thankfully, we didn’t have to break any windows. When you aren’t afraid of anyone bothering you, you can find that missing key, pop out a screen window or in one case, bust out a small bit of glass and unlock the doors. Thankfully, we didn’t discover any bodies, at this point, they would have been pretty foul. Lots of rotted food in kitchens, mold in sinks and dust everywhere but nothing that couldn’t be cleaned.

After much deliberation, Sarah took over the house directly across from it. She said it was because of the large garage where she could work on vehicles but I think it was because of the solar panels. She was already thinking ahead about what would be hard to get a hold of.

We spent the next couple of weeks moving them in and getting things cleaned up. Jessica did most of that while I started to work on the bigger picture. We would need our own food and lots of it. It was only a matter of time before the grocery stores in town closed up and shut down. We need seeds, more farming tools, reliable water. My list grew.

Money was touch and go – with the City government barely struggling along, I continued to receive my paycheck through December but after that, it simply stopped arriving. Thankfully, I stopped paying my mortgage – what were they going to do? The banks probably thought I was dead.

So we went to the hardware store and bought every seed we could lay our hands on. This was it, we were betting the farm, literally.

We churned soil, tore up the grass and converted as much space as possible to gardens. Full lush gardens. With no jobs, there was plenty of time to build and dig and water and weed. Some days, I loved it. Some days, I hated it. But mostly, I enjoyed the calm and peace.

My heart ached for what we had lost, but the boys loved running in the fields, exploring and playing. Jessica and Sarah conspired about some sort of preschool or education time but I argued to hold off. Best wait till the weather turns cold and wet and there’s nothing else to be done but stay inside.

The power stayed on. I don’t know how or why but we kept electricity all through the summer and into the fall. During this time there were a few cars going by but no one visited our little paradise. We did take trips out – trying to get supplies. At one point, we broke into Walgreens and wiped out their cold and flu supplies. Most of the cough syrup had been stolen by meth heads but we did grab plenty of aspirin, bandages and the like.

The harvest was full and delicious. Sarah had even caught some fish and we canned most of the leftover veggies and beans. We knew it was going to be a long summer.

By fall, we were all going stir crazy.


Jessica died and the whole world almost came crashing down. She was out, foraging in an abandoned house in one of the nearby towns. We had biked there while Sarah watched the kids. Jessica was downstairs while I was upstairs – she had tried the door to a garage and there was someone waiting with a gun. They were scared – I don’t think they even meant to do it but the sound – it wasn’t as loud as I expected but I hear it every day.

Picking up the pieces was hard but we had help. Our friends who lived down in Bellingham came up and took over another empty house on the block – they initially tried to go down to the facility at Seattle but their bus got hijacked along the way and they decided to tough it out in Skagit County for a while. After they ate up all the food they could find, they made their way back up north and luck would have it, ran into Sarah while she was gathering tools from a maintenance shed at the nearby middle school.

Fae and Justin wove seamlessly into the fabric of our little community. Fae, only 4 foot 5, was a tiny ball of energy and the children loved her. Justin, a former carpenter, had a never ending supply of projects and was a great listener. Together, it began to feel a little like home and the dark cloud that hung over us lifted, just a bit.

Winter: Fae, Justin and Moving On

The hardest part was just getting up each day. Bless Sarah and her unending love for the boys, she kept us moving forward while I drowned in sorrow.

I heard the faint knock on my door. I rose, donned my rob and answered to find Fae standing there in the dim candle light. Her slim figure was hidden by a bulky black coat.

“Hey, are you canl─▒ bahis siteleri okay?” She nodded.

“Oh yes, I’m fine. I’m more worried about you.”

I welcomed her into our living room, lit by a few flickering battery powered candles, the whole space had a warm soothing light, casting soft shadows and her pretty face. I was suddenly aware of how suddenly naked I was in my fleece robe.

I offered to take her coat but she swept into the room and planted herself on the couch.

“What do you mean?” It was the apocalypse, there were lots of things to be worried about.

“Marcus. When was the last time you had sex?” My brain froze. Was this going where I thought it was? Fae was always so straightforward about things.

“Uhhhhh.” I stammered. “Obviously, not since Jessica died.”

She reached out and patted my arm. “And that was months ago. You’ve probably got quite a bit of . . .frustration built up.”

I nodded.

“I’d like to help you with that.” She leaned in and kissed me. I relished it and then broke away.

“I know we did this before. .. before everything but Justin is here. We can’t hide something like this when there’s only us left?”

“Justin knows I’m here.”

“He does?”

“Yes, and he is really quite understanding. He is comfortable sharing me.”

“But you’re not a possession, what do you want?” Fae smiled and pushed me back on the couch and undoing my robe.

“I want you to be inside me.” She dropped down on her knees in front of me and began stroking my cock to its fullness. I felt the fire within me build, it had been too long. Her long hair cascading down over her face she knelt and pulled the head of my cock into her mouth. I lolled my head back and groaned. So wet and hot. She stroked faster, my balls tightened. She tugged at them sharply, bringing the world back into focus.

“Not yet.” She unbuttoned her coat, letting it fall to the ground. Her perfect small breasts were framed by a light blue lacy bra. I traced the outside with my fingers, brushing my way past her firm petite belly to her slender hips where a matching blue thong seemed to deny gravity.

She pushed me back on the couch and straddled me, cradling my face in her hands kissing my mouth, my chin, my neck, my ears. She ground her hot crotch against my throbbing cock, I groaned hot and heavy. I wasn’t going to last long.

I put my hands on her firm butt, tensing and pushing against me, rubbing it up across her stomach and to her small firm nipples. She let out a moan. She hops off me to slide her panties to the floor, her cooch smooth and shaven. I gently touch her, her eyes closed, her breath catches in her throat.

Yes, dear god, I missed this. I move my fingers faster and faster feeling her wetness coming fast and slick. She kisses me, hot and heavy, her hands scratching my chest. I lift her up and feel between her legs, she reaches down and guides me into her warm depths. I shudder, overwhelmed in the sensation as she slowly glides up and down. She grabs my chin bringing my eyes to hers as she rolls her hips, squeezing me from the inside.

It’s too much – I grab her hips and thrust up and up, frantically fucking her.

“Oh Oh OH OH! OH FUCK! FUCK” She shouted, gripping my arms. She tightens and shudders, gasping out her orgasm. It pushes me over the edge.

I gush into her, erupting shot after shot of cum deep inside her pussy. “Fuuuuuuccck” I groan as she milks the last drops with a roll of her hips. I slump forward and she cradles my head in her arms.

We slowly drift back to normal space, the cool air reminding us of our scattered clothes around the room.

“Wow.” I sigh. “That was incredible.”

“I thought you might like it.” She gives me a kiss and climbs off, rummaging for her clothes.

“Did you have fun?” I ask. She smiles, “Uh yeah.”

“Thank you Fae, this means so much to me.” She gives me such a kind smile and runs her hand through my hair.

“So can we do this again?”

“Now?” She asks incredulously. “No no, some time soon.”

“Let me talk to Justin and see.”

Summer: A Familiar Face

She arrived by bicycle, her thick red curls blown out by the wind. She saw the sign off the Guide Meridian and came to the Sikh temple. Her children were 8 and 6, followed suit. They tied up the bikes and came into the big cafeteria and rang the bell. Fae came in from the back, she’d been chopping stuff for canning and always keeps an eye out for visitors.

She pulled out some soup and fresh bread which they quickly devoured while Fae made conversation. Sam was headed north. Originally she had been swept up in the Seattle based housing projects but she quickly realized that was going south and without Bradley, they were struggling to make it work. She and the kids bargained to catch a ride up to Bellingham, stole some bicycles from a bike shop and loaded up a bike trailer and backpacks with stuff from their house. She was hoping to get into Canada – she had some friends up there and they’d traded a few emails last time she got the internet canl─▒ bahis (in Seattle). While the border was closed, they were hoping to fake being family and get across on pity.

Fae listened while the kids plowed through their second bowl. The border had been forcibly closed and Sam was not the first traveler to try and sneak across although with kids, that’s a hard trip. As they finished their meal, the kids began to goof off and Fae thought, what the heck, let me show them around. Damien and Ryan could probably use the playmates.

“Would you like to stay for a bit? I can show you the farm.” Sam was torn, she had hoped to get across the border soon but she knew it was at least another hour north and the heat of the day was really getting intense.

“Sure, how long have you been here?” Fae always was a little cagey about their story but she shared the broad strokes. Her and her partner Justin out on their own during the pandemic, coming up to take over one of the abandoned houses next to the fields and connecting with the community. Sam, the two kids and Fae walked up the small lane. Many of the front yards had been converted into gardens, squeezing in every inch of usable food space.

“How many people live here?” Sam asked as Sarah waved from the middle of her garden.

“Oh! That’s Sarah, we should say hi!” Fae was grateful for the interruption. She didn’t think this woman could be much a problem, but she was always cautious. She could be part of a larger group and scouting them out.

“Hello, I’m Sarah! Pleased to meet you!” Sarah took off her garden gloves to shake hands.

“Hi, I’m Sam.”

“You look really familiar.” The kids squirmed and started towards some scooters left on the lane, Fae waved them on to give it a try

“I used to live in Bellingham, before . . .”

“Before. Did you go to WWU?” Sarah asked. Sam’s eyes lit up

“Yes! That’s it. Did we have a class together?”

“Maybe? I was an archeology student.”

“Liberal arts, so close.” Sam laughed. How long had it been since she laughed or been around people her own age. She noticed the kids climbing on the scooters, “Wait . . . .”

“It’s cool!” said Sarah, waving them onward. “Those are my son’s toys. His and my nephew.”

“So there’s a whole family here?” Sam felt a flutter of hope in her belly. Families? With kids to play with her kids? And clearly they are producing food if they are giving it out to travelers.

“Oh yeah, there’s my son, my brother-in-law and his son . . . ” Fae was now chasing her children around the driveway making monster noises.

“So you’re sisters?” Sam said, pointing to Fae. Sarah laughed and shook her dense blonde hair. “No, no. Fae and Justin live here too in the house at the end. And then Emerald and Aaron and their daughter are across the street,” she pointed across the street.

“So many people! How’d they all come together? Did you already live here?” Sarah shook her head again, her smile running away from her face.

“I used to live down in Algier, we had a beautiful place in the woods but after the pandemic took my husband, I couldn’t make it work.”

“I’m so sorry.”

“Thank god my son, Ryan, was fine. He’s really close with my nephew up here, they originally lived here in the yellow house down the lane and my brother-in-law invited me to come up and take over the house.”

“So you are squatting?”

“Well, it’s been three years, so I guess? I took all the family pictures and keepsakes and boxed them up so I think of it more as housesitting.”

“And you guys have been doing this for three years?”

“It was a rough start, the first year there wasn’t much to eat and we were struggling with how to garden. My sister passed away that winter. But we added a few more people to our lives and it’s been going strong ever since. My brother set it up and kept us all from stabbing each other with trowels.”

“That’s the truth!” said Fae, rejoining the conversation. “He does the organizing and the planning, my Justin does some of the building, we all help with the farming. Emerald and Aaron look after the kids and we all take care of the chickens and ducks.”

“That’s amazing!” said Sam. Suddenly her plan to run to Canada seemed more and more erratic. Could people make it work? Seattle was a terrifying mess. Tiny studios, people stacked on top of each other, massive cafeterias full of generic staples. It was living but just barely. People who worked could get a better deal but what work was there to be found? She could knit, customer service? It wasn’t quite the skills needed these days. What did she have to offer except three hungry mouths to feed. She wished she could place Sarah, but Bellingham and college seemed a lifetime ago.

“Come on, let me give you the rest of the tour.” Fae led her and the kids down the lane, the warm summer breeze made it an idyllic scene and she enjoyed the opportunity to stretch her legs. They had cramped up after the long ride this morning and then sitting for lunch. She had left the bikes behind but brought one of the backpacks. They had enough cans of food for a three day journey and that lunch had been larger than any meal she had eaten in weeks. In fact, between that and the heat, she could almost go for a nap if she thought it was safe.

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