Though it's snowing right now (because mother nature is apparently having severe mood swings) we've still got people out there working the land. We're going to do some natural farming outside the walls by utilizing crops that grow without much human intervention, but inside the annex portion of New Haven there are big things going on.
Obviously the ground froze overnight, so a lot of the work Jess and her crew started yesterday in plowing the earth has been put on hold. They broke a lot of ground, and are managing to get ahead of schedule a fair bit. Jess is aiming to have the entire annex done by the end of next week, rows ready to take whatever we want to plant in them.
Cause the ground loves it when we plant our seed in it. Aw, yeah.
I have to joke, because worrying about what may happen without any kind of pressure release would be impossible. This is the most critical time of the year for us. Planning and executing the overall agricultural plan is obviously crucial to our needs, and the problems we're facing are serious ones.
One concern is the Exiles. They've also been working on preparing their land for cultivation. There's a lot less to work with inside the fallback point, and they have at least as many mouths to feed as we do. I imagine they'll have to move out of the confines of their little fortress and farm the surrounding land at some point. We're worried that our new neighbors are going to run out of food before they get a grip on farming. Their supplies can only last so long. I doubt the tenuous peace between New Haven and the Exiles could survive fierce hunger. That's a concern for the long haul. For now their stores will last them.
The New Breed are a much more imminent threat. The annex isn't staffed with a full compliment of sentries, so it's impossible to keep all the zombies away. We guard the wall that borders the annex, and our sentries there have seen New Breed on the far wall. They must have watched us for a long while to have figured out the annex walls have a thinner compliment of guards. I don't know if that means they can count or if they gathered a general impression of less people, but either way, they've been sneaking a look at us. At least we know about it.
And we can't stop them from doing it. Mounting the kind of guard we'd need to maintain all that extra wall is beyond us with our current numbers and workload. Our concern is split between the worry that the zombies will come over the wall to attack Jessica's work crews, which is a very real possibility...
...and the much more frightening thought that the New Breed has figured out that we're going to be planting food. The implications of that are huge and dangerous. If the New Breed attacks our people, that's one thing. It's awful but straightforward. But if they've realized how much damage they'd do to us by hitting our breadbasket, then they're far more intelligent and clever than we could have imagined.
Because if they do, we'll have to forage outside of New Haven every day. We'll have to hunt. That means another period of time where almost all our time and energy goes to food and not toward innovation. Progress would stagnate, and our numbers would surely dwindle as we worked to gather food out in the New Breed's own territory. If they're devious enough to actually plan hitting our food supply to flush us out in the open, that is. I could be overreacting completely, giving them far too much credit.
Then again, I watched our captive New Breed for a while this morning. He was playing with a simple puzzle, one of those twelve-piece jigsaw ones that small kids use. In the time I was there, he didn't try putting the thing together, but he studied it. Turned the parts over in his hands, glanced between the pieces as if to look for clues on how they related to one another. Studying. Learning.
I put nothing outside the realm of possibility with the New Breed.