I haven't spent much time talking about my injuries, but since all the excitement seems to have drained out of the world--thank Christ--I figure it's time to give you a small update.
Both Kincaid and I may have said things about my injuries, but both of us have been either hazy or under pressure. For the record, if such a thing matters, I took three bullets. No need for the gory details, but I'm lounging for a while. Secondary injuries were less severe, and thankfully the bullet wounds were all non-critical (if terrifying at first glance) but even so I'm healing three big ass wounds right now and a dozen smaller ones. The doc stopped counting stitches after a hundred.
My leg, my upper chest, my arm. All hit but while they hurt like hell I'm still relatively mobile. I wouldn't want to fight a zombie, but hobbling around my tent is doable.
A bullet, especially one from a rifle, does a lot of fucking damage. I'm in ridiculously good shape for a guy with three of them recently yanked from his body. You can thank my dutiful wife for that. She's the one who made me put on the armor. One good thing about raiding armories is the plentiful supply of military-grade protection. Didn't do a lot of good for my arm and leg, but those weren't core shots. Not grazes, either, but not too deep.
The bullet in my chest/shoulder area hit just at the edge of one of the ceramic plates. The armor ate some of the momentum but shattered and the bullet tumbled into the seam between plates. Tore a hole the size of a golf ball in the material. Lead and ceramic all jammed up inside me. Lots of blood. You know the drill.
I got lucky as hell. That more than anything was the deciding factor in choosing to leave. Beckley's eulogy came perilously close to being necessary. The peace with the UAS is fresh and dangerously shaky, so we're taking advantage while the opportunity exists. Somewhere far enough from everyone else to give us time to settle into some kind of normalcy before the dust settles and this stops being a world of taking and holding.
Because it's coming, you know. Both sides--all sides, even the west and the ones who don't realize there are sides--know we've experienced a watershed moment. The world nearly died and we almost killed what's left. All of us hold some blame. People are realizing it. They're seeing the truth, that we have to overcome our differences and live practically. To stop the bullshit, inside our communities outside between emerging nations. There isn't a person I've talked to who doesn't see the danger we've just lived through and realize we're past the point of simply maintaining.
We're moving forward. If this peace can hold long enough, others will be able to do the things Haven and North Jackson have done. I have hope one day soon we'll see lights on in every community, bright points against the darkness. Our people, which when you get to the most fundamental truth is all people, will put down roots. And as all things do when they're given the chance, they'll grow and expand.
I have hope this will happen. For the first time in ages I have some small expectation to go with it. I've lost the motivation to be here in the thick of things to watch it happen is all. I'm ready to retire to somewhere less busy and full of people. I'm happy to leave the next little bit to others. From what I'm seeing, our tomorrow is in good hands.