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Grid Down: A Post-Apocalyptic EMP Survival Thriller by Derek Shupert

Grid Down: A Post-Apocalyptic EMP Survival Thriller by Derek Shupert

Author:Derek Shupert [Shupert, Derek]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Published: 2021-08-16T22:00:00+00:00


CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

WENDY

On the run.

Her feet pounded the earth, shoes stomped through the growing weeds and other vegetation. The branches from the trees snagged the fabric of her shirt, tearing tiny holes in the top.

Wendy kept moving, pushing forward through the wooded area. She’d gained some distance from the Dukes, but wanted to widen the gap. The shouting and other noise made from the backwood's rejects trailed off to nothing. Still, she kept her guard up and moved as if they were inches away.

Each branch breaking under her feet made her heart skip a beat. She jerked her chin over her shoulder, searching for any movement within the low light, but spotted none.

The flashlight swung wildly from her wrist. The side of the plastic exterior slammed the tree trunks and bushes she stumbled past.

It hurt to breathe. Her lungs stung with each hard step. The sore ankle caused her to limp some, but she kept going hard, fighting through the discomfort.

Wendy struggled to get her bearings. Her mind drowned in fright and panic, clouding her thoughts and hindering her judgements. Getting back to her grandparent’s place was her mission, but with night coming, and the ever-present danger from the Dukes stalking her, that would prove challenging.

The pain in her lungs flourished. A cramp attacked her side. The muscles in both legs burned hot from the stress.

She palmed her side, stopped, then leaned against a tree. Her forearm rested on the rigid surface of the bark. She panted hard—mouth open. Her head dangled toward the dirt as she sought to refill her lungs.

Wendy turned and looked in the direction she’d come from. The sunlight retreated faster, making the interior of the woods darker and harder for her to detect any motion.

The plastic strap around her wrist irritated the rope burn she’d sustained. A layer of sweat coated her body from head to toe. The salt seeped into the damaged flesh and burned. It added to the other trouble spots on her body that flared at various times, tormenting Wendy.

She couldn’t keep up the feverish pace she had for too much longer. The lack of water and food drained her to dangerous levels. The high heat and injuries added to the dangers plaguing her. Rest was what she needed, and copious amounts of water, whether she liked it or not.

Wendy stood and stayed close to the tree trunk. She scanned over the area, hunting for any safe space she could take refuge in.

The exhaustion she battled made her vision blurry. Both sockets stung and ached. She shut her lids, squinted hard, then opened them wide. The haze remained.

The tips of her fingers pressed into each socket and rubbed. Anger and frustration built inside her gut. She lowered her hand and blinked, finding a brief moment of pure clarity.

Wendy studied the trees and hills ahead of her. She glanced to either side, finding more of the same. Indecision racked her, making it difficult to commit to a course of action.

A rustling noise sounded at her back.



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