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Brain Rhodes and his cousin, Steven, are leaving the protection of their underground bunker for the first time, after a cataclysmic war and unrelenting disease ravaged the earth.
On the other side of the North American continent, young Simon Kalispell is leaving the safety and seclusion of his cabin deep in the woods, traveling with his aging canine companion, Winston.
For individual reasons, these men are traveling east, where the fragmented lives of a small number of survivors will soon be decided by the choices of a corrupt few.
Simon Kalispell and Brian Rhodes are not yet aware, but the strength that resides inside them will soon be tested, and destiny will call for their fates to be forever intertwined.
Read an excerpt:
Brian lowered his gun. “It’s okay, Steve. He’s dead.” He looked around. “There’s no one here.”
Steven lowered his rifle, wiping his palms on his thighs and brushing the sweat from his eyes.
“I said he’s dead, Steve—”
“I reckon he’s dead, Brian. I see he’s dead.”
“Come on now. We’re right at town.”
They sidestepped the corpse until it was well behind them. If the body was someone they had once known, it was now impossible to determine who that person might have been.
“That won’t be the last of them,” Brian said. “You better get your head on straight.”
Steven opened his mouth to speak, but then shut it again.
They stepped onto the road as the first house emerged from the woods. They walked past it, taking careful notice of the blank windows—as black as the eye sockets of the corpse—and scanned for any sign of movement, like the fluttering of drapes, or the partially covered face of a person peering out from the darkness with a shotgun clenched tight in their hands. Anything.
But there was no movement.
“Think anyone’s left?” Steven said, with a crack in his voice.
Brian shrugged. “I know as much as you do.”
The yards around the homes, and Pearl Street itself, were spotted with litter and debris of every kind blowing in the gentle breeze. Overgrown tree roots buckled sections of the sidewalk and emerged from cracks in the pavement. They passed the police station bordering the center of town. The cruisers were vacant in the parking lot, and the building was cold and silent.
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