“We’ll never know how many survived Day One, or even Week One. Doesn’t matter now I suppose. It was dead quiet when I did leave the flat. I felt scared driving it was so quiet, but there was no fucking way I’d be walking around. There must have been other people locked up in their houses like me. But mostly it was just bodies everywhere. Didn’t see anyone living but the few stragglers I picked up. From what they said, it sounded like all the fucking phone jobs wore themselves out fast – like they’d all run a marathons. Just started collapsing. That’s all it took though. A few days.
“We got out though, out to the country first. Well ahead of those fucking Spines. Day Two was later of course. We just drove to the nearest army base in XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX. I’ve never been so glad we pissed all that money away on military spending. Not that they were ready either. Like I said, they’ve all got phones too. They’d lost two thirds of their soldiers already – either as phone jobs or to them. Phone jobs with guns. Thank fuck this isn’t America. Anyway, their chain of command was coming apart fast and they were not pleased to see us, or the others. But they took us in.
“I guess it shows Their contempt for our armies – They never even attacked directly. Not at the start. I mean the phone jobs were everywhere, but that’s not exactly a surgical strike is it? In places like XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX they could contain them. The Spines only showed up in cities and towns. They just didn’t care about these outposts. If you can shoot people through their phones why bother fighting at all.
“So yeah, they took us in, and it started getting joined up again. No one wanted to use phones though, or even walkie talkies. Freaks people out properly when you see someone put a phone to their head. Doesn’t mean ‘call me’ anymore. After a while they started training everyone. I’d never held a gun before, except in games. Paintball, Call of Duty. We were only supposed to be back up, guard duty – it gave us something to do. But once they started going into towns and attracting attention. Well. They used up the real soldiers fast – that’s what they’re for isn’t it? War I mean – to kill off the young. Like a plague for the modern world. But there was time, while the Spines finished off the big cities and move onto the towns. Time to dig out those mothballed army toys.
“We’d get odd reports of drastic measures – Syria managing to wipe out the whole Middle East – they all just went nuts at each other. Even more nuts. The US and Russia nuked their own cities. No one knows what happened to China. No one will tell us anyway. You’ve got to speculate though right? China had even more phones than the rest of the world put together, all packed into their cities. Fuck. Can you imagine what it must have been like when they started ringing? But they’ve got millions of miles of countryside. Sounds like some apocalyptic Kung-Fu film. I’d have watched that. But not now. No. We’ve all seen too much.
To be continued next week.
Stolen Skies – Part Twenty-Five (Nanowrimo 2022)
It seemed like everyone went rogue these days. I wondered when it would be our turn, but I suppose we’d been rogue from the beginning when we pretended to be