Friday, March 28, 2014

Story 208: Same as it Ever Was

Tasia stretched and wandered over to the ladder, still groggy from her usual night terrors.  The war had been over for years but the few scattered survivors got to watch reruns every night, bombs falling in their dreams as the entire world burned over and over again.  Tasia told herself that she had gotten used to the nightmares, but she suspected that if that were really true they would have stopped.

As she climbed the creaking ladder from the basement to the main floor of the house she heard a fluttering of wings above her; the pigeons were getting to be a serious menace again.  She looked up and saw them there, nesting in the gap between the ledge formed by the old roof and the new section placed over it in order to cover the massive hole that extended all the way down - which was, of course, why Tasia could use a ladder to get upstairs.  She could have patched the floor like she had for the roof, but something about the indoor crater appealed to her.

There were some things she did plan on repairing, however.  Three of the salvaged solar panels weren't actually hooked up yet, and the water pump still needed work if she was going to take any real showers.  Tasia missed showers.  She started to make a list of parts in her head and was just debating which side of the ruins to search when she nearly tripped over something on the front porch.
"Oh, not again."

She stared at it as if worried it would bite, and then carefully lifted it from the cracked concrete and examined it from all angles.  Benign, inert.  Just a bunch of paper, dye, and toner.  She took a few steps into the front yard and looked in both directions, noting that there was one for each house even though most of the actual buildings had collapsed or burnt down.  She had vowed to find out who was behind this back when it happened the year before, but without any need for a calendar the whole thing had slipped her mind.

"It's just not possible." she said to nobody in particular.  She flipped through the pages of the phone book for a moment, looking at all the numbers that were certainly not in service anymore, and then dropped it back onto the porch with the others and headed off into the ruins in search of something more practical.