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    submitted 17 July 2015 @ 08:06

Out of the Wastes

Written by EyeoftheNyte

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Date: A couple of days after the chase, I think, sleep has been a little spotty.

I drove almost non-stop. There was a couple of times where I nearly nodded off and ran into some prewar leavings. I got there eventually, the ranges, beyond that the edge of the Wastes! I was so close. There was something odd though. Perhaps it was dehydration. No, I’d stuck to my rationing. I wasn’t going to run out anytime soon. I took another drink just in case. Really, perhaps my mind was fried because all the time in the desert. I was seeing these odd… well they looked like bubbles, semi-translucent bubbles. I thought I was losing my mind until one of them pushed some rocks off of a cliff. They missed but it was far too close to comfort. A few smaller pieces rained down making light clicking sounds at they bounced off the metal of the vehicle.

I was just about ready to dismiss all of this to chance when I noticed a few car placed in the roadway. Just beyond the three or four derelicts there was another moving into place begin pulled. At the time I wasn’t sure what it was. It stood nearly as tall as a cow at the shoulder and was built like a greyhound but more muscled. From its maw extended longer curled teeth and a few others that stuck out randomly. It’s color ranged from tan to a deep brick red. It bounded once and then walked away and in a few strides away it faded from view, in one of those same translucent bubbles! I found that if it was standing still you couldn’t see anything but a faint distortion at the edge. It was more obvious as it moved away and could it move!

I had slowed at that point and apparently forgotten about the obstacles in my path. I wasn’t going to get stuck here so I floored it. The ambulance shuddered and there was a horrible crash. But the vehicles moved and parted in a chevron like pattern. The final car I attempted to veer around. I clipped the side of it and another of the beasts leapt out from behind it on to the hood in front of me. Cracks shot up the windshield. Its hound like face held deep black eyes, they held an unsettling intelligence. This was one of the Wastehounds!

It was almost an instinct at this point, I lifted shotty and attempted to steer with my knee and fired at its face and hit the breaks. The hound’s head reeled back and it flew off the hood and tumbled as I screeched to a stop and it tumbled along the ground. It wasn’t moving… I wasn’t breathing. I inhaled deeply and could feel my heart pounding again. I think I lost a few years off my life these recent days. I could see the thing clearly, now that I didn’t have a windshield any longer. I leaned my head back against the seat and laid the gun across my lap. The vehicle shook again as small tracks were ripped into the roof of the cab right above my head. Thick hooked claws had punched and tore right through. I lifted the shotgun off of my lap and proceeded to fire off rounds directly upwards until it dry fired.

It tumbled off the top as the growls and snarls turned into sick gurgling sounds. It stumbled and fell into the rocky dirt and lay as still as the first Wastehound still laying in the road. Now I stared ahead and laughed almost hysterically thinking that I now had a sunroof. I reloaded shotty and grabbed an axe that had been in some sort of red box with a hose at the hospital. A handful of purposeful strides took me to the hound on the side of the road. With a couple of heavy swings its head separated from the body. After doing the same to the one lying in the middle of the road I put the two heads into sacks and put them into a container with a mark on it with odd shapes that was supposed to be some sort of warning. A stone plucked from the side of the road was a makeshift hammer as I smashed the curls of metal back into place. As I was doing this I found one of the large hooked claws from the hole before I tried to close them up. I didn’t need any more hazards. Finally I took some line that was tucked into the back and used it to make a crisscrossed mesh over the hole left when the Brute ripped the door from its hinges. Hopping back into the driver’s seat, I stared back on the road hopefully this time for the end of the Wastes and onto the trading towns.

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