By Sophie Littlefield
Awakening in a bleak panorama, Cass greenback vaguely recollects enduring whatever negative. Having no thought what percentage days--or weeks--have handed, she slowly realizes the frightening fact: her daughter, Ruthie, has vanished. And along with her, the majority of civilization. rather than winding in the course of the once-lush hills, the roads at the present time see basically cannibalistic Beaters--people became hungry for human flesh by way of a central authority scan long gone wrong.
In a damaged, barren California, Cass will endure a harrowing quest to get Ruthie again. Few humans belief an outsider--much much less one that bears the telltale scars of a Beater attack--but she reveals safeguard with an enigmatic outlaw, Smoke. And she'll want him greater than ever whilst his ragged band of survivors research that she and Ruthie became the main feared, and wanted, guns in a courageous new world....
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Extra resources for Aftertime
We kept a sharp lookout for polar bears as we walked, making 360-degree sweeps of the landscape every few minutes. Each reindeer we spied in the dark was a potential bear in disguise, and we took no chances, standing and observing very pale ones until we were certain they were just that and nothing more. We talked as we walked, matching our conversation to the rhythm of our stride, helping us to forget the tiredness in our legs. Hauke told me the story of Nils Holgersson, who flew the length of Sweden on the back of a goose, describing the landscape as he went, so giving Swedish children a geography lesson in the telling of the tale.
I did feel a bit guilty, but sometimes a gal’s got to do what a gal’s got to do. My worst worry (I was still trying not to think about the bears) was about seeing the same person day in, day out, for a whole year. I knew of instances in the past where it had all gone horribly wrong between couples, married or otherwise, but for others it had been a success. Karin had done it with her husband for two years and loved it, but I was going with a complete stranger. On the other hand, if we got on as well as we had so far, there was no reason why I shouldn’t enjoy it as much as she had.
He couldn’t be. As I approached the table, he stood up and we shook hands and exchanged broad grins and warm greetings before I made myself comfortable on the bench opposite. Any tension we were feeling disappeared as fast as an Arctic tern and we relaxed 33 Champagne and Polar Bears_INSIDE33 33 02/01/2007 16:08:27 Champagne and Polar Bears into the evening, talking animatedly over a beer and our pizzas like old friends. Conversation was friendly and we learnt much about each other. It wasn’t until later that I realised just how loaded Hauke’s seemingly innocuous questions were.
Aftertime by Sophie Littlefield