Days 172 & 173: Fish Sticks

Much to Jason’s chagrin, Jacen took up smoking.

“How will it look if one of us has smoke lines and cancer and the other is healthy and lives to a hundred?” said Jason as Jacen lit his latest cigarette.

“Like we’re different people?” Jacen said.

Jason rolled his eyes. “It’s the end of the world, honeybear,” he said. “The cigs will run out sooner or later.”

“Better smoke ’em while I got ’em I guess,” said Jacen, doing just that. “Lowers hunger levels. So this whole apocalypse thing isn’t quite as unbearable.”

There was no arguing with him. As much as Jason hated kissing Jacen after a smoke (which were growing increasingly common), at least it made Jacen seem calmer.

They both carried clubs and knives as they trudged along the suburban streets. The cities were picked clean, but the smaller outlying towns still had a few supplies left. Following along several steps behind them was Jayson, a third clone, who distinguished himself from the other two by possessing a series of scars from his days alone on the road during the bad days of the End. Some instinct brought him to his home of origin, where he found his two identical clones. He was surprised to learn they were married. Not that there was anything wrong with that.

Jayson had a rifle and a decent amount of bullets. If any of the three clones was a hunter, it was him, even though they were all nearsighted and had broken their glasses long ago.

“Pet store,” called Jayson in his familiar, but raspy, voice.

Jason and Jacen said, “So?”

“Meat,” said Jayson.

The married clones looked pale, but they followed the third into the shop.

The cages were empty, littered with tufts of fur, some small bones, and splashes of blood here and there. Most of the pet food was taken. When people got hungry, they got hungry. Greed for anything to fill that void took over.

The only thing that wasn’t empty was the aquariums. Some of the fish were even still alive, picking their aquarium-mates clean.

“Fish sticks,” was all Jayson rasped.



Today (and yesterday’s) six random prompt categories were, “Clones,” “Greed,” “Honey bear,” “Chainsmoking,” “Aquarium,” and, “A hunter.”

I finally got my laptop back from the shop! Good as new. No more prompt delays from now on!

– H.



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