He had news. Bad news. The UAS sent out a message this morning, explaining that thirty of their people went AWOL much as our dissenters did. The difference is that the UAS didn't kick their people out with minimal weaponry and supplies. These people were all manning a supply dump full of heavy vehicles and firepower. The gist of the argument they were having with the UAS leadership involved New Haven and how we're bothersome in our continued existence. The idea goes that if New Haven were destroyed, as the apparent head of the Union, the body would die. The Union would fall.
Sort of a casual way to think about the murder of two thousand people, us not being an imminent threat and all, but I give the deserters full marks for honesty. The long and short of it is that the UAS didn't want us to get hit by some of their people and start a full-on ground war with the Union.
At least, that's the story. I know it makes me paranoid but I have to wonder if this isn't the UAS trying to make a tactic out of our own dissenters leaving. Those folks left here and we disavowed them, and that was real. The UAS took us at our word about it, which was nice. Now we're being asked to do the same and facing a much worse threat than our (former) people were to them.
We really don't have a lot of choice. Will is angry--and tired, if the haggard look on his face was any indication--because we're put in a corner here. The tentative and minimal trust between the UAS and the Union is too important to the peace to threaten by starting our own war over this.
It's fucked any way you look at it. The fact that these nutjobs heading toward us intend to do the zombie's work for them is irritating enough. I'm used to dealing with people who want dominion over others or to kill them for some greater purpose, just as I'm used to fighting off the undead who only want a hot meal. But to pull us into politics, which is something I hoped we'd left behind, is a whole other back of worms. I really hope these fuckers come at us just so I can show them how much I appreciate their concern.
By now everyone in New Haven knows about this. There was an announcement not long after Will left. Some of the people from the Box managed to set up a PA system. Don't know that it covers everywhere but gossip is unique in physics for its ability to move faster than the speed of light. I know Patrick and Becky are aware. Pat is worried, deeply worried, about having to endure heavy fire. He is worried for the kids especially and it's strange to see him become so mature and adult about being a parent to his own girl and the nieces. Of course, when he was expressing his concern he blasted out a wicked fart and kept on going over my laughter, so I have to wonder how much of that conversation was really about his fears. Seems like he was just trying to make me laugh. Pat's a comedian.
Becky was over here at the time, though she left when Patrick bombed the house, and her attitude was surprisingly relaxed. When she came to us she'd spent a long time moving across continents and oceans to reach home. She was kind of broken as a person. In the time since I'd almost forgotten that even before The Fall she had seen and endured worse than 99.9% of the human race. Being a soldier in war zones, getting hit by IEDs, and putting the wounded back together on the fly will harden you. Becky just shrugged when I told her what Will told me. War isn't anything new to her, and she lost her panic reflex for it long ago.
As for me? I don't feel fear any longer. Well, that's not true; I feel it when immediate danger is on me. But I've lost the capacity to worry about things I can't change right in front of me. Those people may come. They might kill me. They might kill a lot of us. But they probably won't kill us all. We'll face them when we have to and stand tall. Until and unless that happens, I'll keep pecking away and writing my books. One thing the zombie plague has taught us above all others: if you let fear keep you from doing anything, you can't survive long term. Simple truth.