Friday, August 8, 2014

Chapter 14



"You already told me he - well all of you are - into survivalism or whatever the heck you want to call it."

"Right."

"And you told me he thinks things are going to get bad pretty soon and stay that way for a while."

"That's right too, as far as it goes anyway.  What Gramps means by bad is really bad ... maybe Civil War bad.  Maybe worse than that."

I nodded.  "They've been talking about violence and stuff like that on the news for a while.  And in Culinary Class we had a teacher named Mrs. Valdez that started teaching units on Depression Era cooking, cooking from the Civil War era, how to substitute ingredients in case you run out of what you would normally use, and recipes for using up the kind of food you'd find from a Food Bank.  In home ec Mrs. Potter followed along that line and had a unit on what people did before all of those fancy cleaning products were available and how to make over clothes and things like that.  Most of our teachers in the SLD wing seemed to be trying to prepare us for things getting bad.  I figure we're probably better prepared than a lot of other people are.  The teachers always seemed to make their lessons around how we can still have a good life even though we might not have very much.  Some people that have a lot won't know how to get along with less than what they do now."

I noticed he'd relaxed quite a bit. He said, "I don't have to explain this stuff to you."

"You need to explain to me how your family plans on making do if I'm supposed to help."

"It's about like you've said but there's more to it than that.  For instance Gramps thinks that the government, or someone the government eggs on, may come out into the county and start taking away the farmer's hard work to give it to people in the city to try and pacify them.  Maybe not tomorrow or the next day but he figures this autumn and winter people are going to get hard up."

Sawyer went on at length but finally I had to ask him to stop.  "I'm ... I'm topped off Sawyer."

"You're probably wondering if you married into a crazy family."

"No.  I know you're crazy, maybe some of the rest of your family is too.  Crazy doesn't bother me but ... you're talking about some scary stuff and ... and I ..."

"It's ok.  I'm tired myself and I have to be up real early to go over help work on getting the trailers set and hooked up.  And look, I got a suggestion.  This house stinks.  You have a problem if we sleep in the back of the truck?  I've got an air mattress and the camper top will keep the damp off."

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Sawyer shook his head after he blew his nose.  "Whew, you don't realize how bad some of them rooms stink until you get out into the fresh air."

"No.  But one way or the other it will be better tomorrow."

He asked, "You sure this is Ok?"

"No ... I mean yes ... I mean yes, this is ok."

"You don't need to be so nervous.  I told you I wasn't going to jump all over you."

'I know."

"You don't act like you know."

"I'm trying ok?  But it isn't you, I promise.  I'm always a little tense sleeping in a new place.  You can get used to anything but the first night is always hard."

He was going to say something then stopped.  He reached out and I jumped when he patted my arm.  "Sorry, didn't mean to scare you.  I just ... look I know how you're feeling.  County was rough.  I had to sleep with one eye open.  Some of them guys are freaks.  Then no sleep makes you crazy and jumpy and you start to wonder if you're the freak."

I rolled over carefully - moving too fast made the air mattress wobble too much - and then said, "You're not a freak and my freakiness is only skin deep.  It's everyone else that has the problem."

"Yeah?"

"Yeah."

"Convinced?"

"Pretty convinced."

"Yeah?"

"Uh ..."

"Just a kiss Kay-Lee."

Well it was more than a kiss but not much more because the top of my head felt like it was going to blow a hole in the camper top.  He seemed pretty self-satisfied though.

In the dark he whispered, "We're safe Kay-Lee.  We're safe."

3 comments:

  1. Always good to feel safe, Thanks.

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  2. Kathy thanks for the story and for sharing it with us.
    Wayne

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  3. Awesome chapters. Thanks so much for the updates!

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