Ah, freedom never tasted so good! Yesterday Will finished his repair work and the rest of us were let go. In point of fact, we were pretty much thrown out. Those people didn't want us around in a very serious way. So, we started the next leg of our journey north. One bright piece of news is that we're topped off on fuel. Our captors had no problem with us draining every vehicle we could find outside the confines of their defenses.
We made it to Washington state with no problems. An unexpected advantage of the new breed strain of the zombie plague being so virulent is that the small clumps of undead seem to consistently congregate into larger groups. This area of the country is running low on zombies, or so it seems. We only caught sight of a handful on the trip up here.
The roads are clear thanks to the huge number of people across the whole of the west coast that trade with one another, as well as the marauders that have slowly cleared away obstructions for purposes less constructive. I guess if you're looking for silver linings, that's one--marauders do make travelling easier for the rest of us. Or they did...
There have been few reports of marauder bands attacking anyone since the amnesty. We know they are out there thanks to the information being supplied by so many of their number joining with us. We know that several large bands still operating consist of the more crazed elements, men and women who've basically lost all sense of right and wrong. A few of the people who joined New Haven with Kincaid were originally from such a band--their previous leader tried to kill them for wanting to leave.
They sound like swell guys.
I'm trying to stay optimistic, but the combination of knowing the remaining marauders are also the most vile and dangerous of them along with reports that the new breed of zombies is making its way across the continent with terrifying speed is a little much. Even if the team and I started home right now, abandoning the rest of the trip, we probably wouldn't make it to New Haven before the new breed became fully entrenched in Kentucky.
We won't stop, of course. We have only one stop here in Washington state, and it's not for trade. Well, it is in a way, but not for trade goods. This is an information trading stop. We're going to be receiving some data about the locals, but they don't want it transmitted electronically, at least not all of it. Some stuff is marked as being alright to share, other bits not so much.
As backward as it seems, we'll be heading south again after this. We'll head in a nice diagonal from our next stop, cutting across the map above most of our previous stops and heading for the deep south. We'll have to refuel a few times, but with the huge amount of extra fuel we carry at all times, that shouldn't be all that difficult. Not to mention the caches of gas and ethanol the good people of Sparta have been nice enough to leave along our projected trail for us.
If we avoid disaster, we shouldn't get low enough on fuel to have to scavenge. Fingers crossed.
We're past the halfway point in the trip. We've got very few stops between here and the warmer climes of the south, and from there we'll be running east before swinging back toward home. If all goes well, we'll be home by the end of January. It's strange to even think about. After all this time away, all the places we've been, and all the new things we've seen, I feel like a totally different person. It's almost unreal to me that within two months, god willing, the people in my life won't be a static crew of five others and a constantly changing group of strangers I may never see again.
Don't get me wrong, I'm eager to be home. I miss my friends and family. I miss my dogs, cats, and ferrets. I miss my wife more than words can say.
And dammit, I miss having sex. A LOT.