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Latest Stories

December 05, 2022
General Stories M Da Costa

Only Sixty Five

Standing outside the supermarket Harold noted the diminishing line of trolleys. It’s going to be busy, like last week. Tuesday was ‘pensioners’ day; besides the specials, it was a time to socialise. His wife, Mavis, was an imposing lady and thanks to her job…
December 05, 2022
Poetry Peter Greenhall

On The Come Down

What a weekend, How great was that? Total mayhem, Too much of that. Sliding down the walls, Excessive sweating too, Can't keep still, Body is aching through and through. Then come the shivers, Poison in my blood, Wish I could detox, Gun in my hand, I really…
December 05, 2022
General Stories D.A. Cairns

A Place of Refuge

“I’m so tired of this weather,” said Spider. “Me too,” agreed Beetle. “I want to be out running around in the sweet, long grass feeling the sun on my back.” She extended and beat her wings suddenly out of frustration. “Calm down,” said Spider. “It can’t rain…
December 05, 2022
Poetry Peter Greenhall

Relief Its Over

Thank god we no longer exist, A couple, Together, A faded mist Smiles and laughter, At times it was great, Who could be dafter?, Oh for f**k sake. Then the intimacy began, Between us two, Drinking and flirting, I've got feelings for you. Kisses, a connection,…
December 05, 2022
Romance Stories L Christopher Hennessy

Exploring The Nature Of It

Part One Holding open the door for her was always the better part of my day when life, as it does, places people together, for whatever reason. Our reason was to learn. Her name I prefer to keep to myself and her eyes still have me mistaken. Dark green, I…
November 10, 2022
Horror Stories Robert Pettus

Three Musky Tears

A hulking drop of sizzling, putrid acid-rain crashed with force into Carew Tower, crumbling thousands of the old khaki bricks, sending them falling weightily downward hundreds of feet to the street below—its Art Deco, classic beauty now destroyed. Another…
November 01, 2022
Poetry Ava

Company None

Set up a company. None. I am thinking of what it should be. None. Hard to tell. None of my business. Anywhere and everywhere, ‘How To Discuss What Matters Most’. Live or die. I am on my way to Cambridge. Whether it is your negotiation or your solution, I…
November 01, 2022
Poetry Peter Greenhall

Economy

How can we see this through, Rates rising, Inflation too, How much more, Can we take from you? Blame the war, A far gone place, Energy crisis, In your face. Not of our making, Nor the Russian people too, NATO expansion, Putin warned not too. Costs are way too…
November 01, 2022
General Stories Lawrence Hartmann

The City

She was 40 years old. Halfway to eighty, she thought. Half her life is over. “Today is my birthday,” she said to the waiter at the café. “Happy birthday, ma’am,” the young handsome man said to her. People were calling her “ma’am” now. Was she looking like a…
October 20, 2022
Poetry Ava

Wait For The Sunrise

A morning, Suddenly rain, Not so early, Wait for the sunrise. A typical night, It was raining, Prevented the outdoor artwork, Went back to word. I feel the feeling, It’s from you, But it’s not about me, Save the word. I feel the feeling, Just like you in me,…
October 20, 2022
Poetry Peter Greenhall

The Boys

 Boys, boys, boys, Who do you wanna be, A good boy, naughty boy, or An apple from a bad tree. Boys, boys, boys, The choice is yours to see, Read book's, University, Safe, reliable. Boys, boys, boys, What do you want to do?, Fighting, earning, and screwing, No…
October 20, 2022
Mystery Stories Norman Marcotte

The Nose Knows

The two detectives walked slowly down the path of a blooming field. It was 8:40 am on a sunny Sunday morning when they were called to the suburb of Mapleridge. All they were told was to investigate a situation whereby a body had been found in a park behind a…

We had always agreed that if anything bad were to happen, we would go to my in-law’s place near Chama. It was a large log cabin located on a ridge overlooking the Brazos River and completely off the grid: solar panels for power, rain catch barrels for water, and cast iron stove for heat. Low population density and the remote location in a densely forested area made the cabin ideal for withstanding any number of natural or man-made disasters.

So when the news began airing information regarding a rabies epidemic and then went on to report about a strange outbreak sweeping across the east coast, we had a plan. The wife and I loaded the kids in the car and headed to Chama.

It took a bit longer than expected. Her parents and grandmother decided they were coming too. We also had to wait for my dad to drive up from Albuquerque. All told, I think it took us about four hours to drive from Bernalillo to Chama. We ended up going the back way through the Llaves Valley. It was probably a smart decision given traffic along Interstate 25, but really I just chose the route because I liked the drive.

We had stocked up on canned goods, camping gear, and warm clothes. These were all things, we typically brought with us when we went to the cabin, but considering we were not sure how long we’d be gone, we took a lot.

We also brought with us an assortment of firearms. My father-in-law taught security and conceal-carry permit courses, so we had an assortment of weapons and then there was the hunting gear. Total, I think we brought with us two dozen firearms: rifles, shot guns, pistols, and even a couple hunting bows.

The canned goods didn’t last long, but that wasn’t a big deal. There was a lot of game in the woods. It wasn’t just the deer and elk. We hunted the cattle and sheep too. You would be amazed at how much livestock was left to graze in the forests. The domesticated animals were the easiest to kill. A lot of the time they sought us out. I think they thought we were ranchers coming to feed them.

It took some getting used to. After a while, we didn’t have grain or fruit, but there was an abandoned raspberry farm a couple miles down the road. We could go there and get berries seasonally. There are always other foods in the forest, if you know where to look. Believe it or not, just about every portion of a prickly pear is edible.

Zombies? Never saw a one. Really, never saw much of anyone. Now don’t get me wrong, we had our moments of danger. There was a blizzard which hit us pretty hard and a couple wildfires that came close to burning down the cabin at one time or another, but we ended up alright. I think like a lot of westerners, we managed.

About the Author:

Matthew J. Barbour is a South(west)ern Gothic Speculative Fiction writer living with his wife and three children in Bernalillo, New Mexico. When he is not writing fiction, Mr. Barbour manages Jemez Historic Site in Jemez Springs, New Mexico and writes for a number of regional newspapers, including the Red Rocks Reporter and the Sandoval Signpost.

About the Story:

Managing the Zombie Apocalypse like most zombie stories is less horror and more magical realism/social commentary. It was inspired by a simple question. What would you do?

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