Saturday, March 25, 2017

A Choice

Snow began as they crossed the frontier. "That's just great," muttered Stevens.

Larkin growled, "Keep walking."

Walk, or die.

The city looming out of the snow was broken, though not by fighting. The Syndicate pulled down buildings while retreating, preventing any refugees from staying in the contested territory.

A low moan made Stevens turn around. Brooke had stumbled in the woods, soaked her clothes. She was staggering, wouldn't make it unless she warmed up.

An old factory offered three walls and part of a roof. "We need to stop, make a fire. She's gonna freeze."

No one slowed. Larkin didn't even look back.

He'd managed to coax his tinder alight when the flash threw hard shadows around them; the shockwave knocked more bricks from the wall and showered dust. Another Syndicate gift - booby traps. Outdated munitions attached to tripwires; easy to avoid unless you were so exhausted that you could barely put one foot in front of another.

Brooke didn't stir. He wondered if he'd have to carry her in the morning. Or if he'd be better off looking for another bomb.

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