Introduction: Discovering a puppy in a post-apocalyptic world makes a little girl’s day but the puppy draws more attention than she bargained for.
The little girl paused in the hallway of the old hotel listening. She was 10 years old and alone searching for uncontaminated food and useful things to use back at her hiding place.
She strained to hear the faint noise-there it was again! A whining noise of some sort. She wondered what it could be. Not many good things were alive anymore. Watching her step she continued her search.
It was 2018 and ever since the crippled nuclear reactor explosion went underground in Fukushima it was like this in San Francisco. Instead of the fog the city used to be famous for, it was now a thick, unromantic radioactive haze filled with vile things that will kill you eventually and for good. And you don’t want to come back as one of them!
She was drawn nearer to the noises that were coming from room 11. She was hunting for food, water anything she could find to keep surviving. She was one of the lucky ones but did not feel lucky today. Looking for untainted food was a full-time job and she was hungry.
She was a pretty little girl although you would never guess as her hair was matted, she was filthy and she lived like an animal. Her heart was pounding in her chest and she counted the beats to calm herself as she pushed the door open.
At least she still had a heartbeat; the older ones turned first. She kept her blade-sharp just in case but she must be fast. She lived this long because her blade was always ready and she was quicker than most.
She heard the noise again, this time, louder and looked around the room still not believing her ears. Animals were pretty much dead now everything alive was killed and eaten. Yet there it was again and it sounded like a dog.
When she saw it she fell in love. The black puppy was terribly excited now his sharp barks piercing the silence. It was straining to get to her tied to a table leg in the middle of the room with a rope. It was skinny and dirty but it was a real puppy!
She saw no one just a wreck of a hotel room that from the looks of it had no food and nothing to offer her but she found a puppy and now, there it was!
She stopped in her tracks, surely this was a trap! She drew her blade her blue eyes searching the hotel room very carefully. Surely they were not smart enough for tricks?
She came out of the shadows tentatively holding her hand out to the puppy. When she got close enough it licked her face and she laughed at the rough tongue tickling her skin. She put down her blade and picked up the puppy. It was warm and didn’t seem sick, but where did it come from?
The puppy struggled in her arms yelping and she tried to quiet it. She cut the rope and surveyed the room as it was getting dark and it was bad to be out at night. She spent too much time tracking the puppy and now it won’t stop making noise. She pulled it into a closet so they weren’t out in the open.
Suddenly, one of them entered the room! She tore her shirt and stuffed a piece of it into the puppy’s mouth. It struggled and made too much noise so she automatically broke it’s neck as the thing passed their hiding place.
She was used to being near them and became very still. She noticed that the puppy was bleeding from the nose but she stayed quiet, thinking how she might salvage the day. They never found her this way she was good at hiding.
The vile thing had almost left the room but it spun around at the door. Her soul went cold as she realized it had caught the scent of the puppies blood and it was all for naught.
© Rebecca Sanchez 2014