Don't Open the Box

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Chapter 1

They were in a safe and dry spot for the night. They wouldn’t risk a structure falling on them tonight. Teri found it - a collapsing Tower of London with rubble piles, but overall one of the places untouched by the tsunamis or destroyed too badly by the earthquake. Teri curled up on the bed where the queens’ prisoners once slept. Though intact, they were wary about being up so high. The floor could collapse under them, though at least they didn’t need to worry about being carried away by 30ft waves of water.

Teri was not really asleep. Who could sleep living like this? She had guessed that when sleep deprivation caught up, she’d be out like a light and not worried about safety, or if the place was wet or dry. Ash’s paces around the small room - flipping his useless spear - made her even more anxious. In her opinion, they have no one and nothing to fight. At least not enemies they can punch or kick. She met him working for the same company when she was promoted and sent to London. Back then she knew him as Mr. Fareway. They worked closely together and knew each other well before these events.

The other girl she and Ash picked up they found out was named Zoe. They were perched in a tree hoping to ride out storm surges. Once it was over, both climbed and found the girl. She was not in the best condition. Soaked with cuts and being eaten by unseens - flesh-eating microorganisms that were the only things to survive. They only showed up when the floodwaters came. When we found her, she was dying. Having not seen another person since the event occurred, they went down to a can of salt and a bag of oxygen. Mixing the two, Teri poured the mixture on her and watched the air move as thousands of the unseen scurried off to find their next victim. Since that day, the three of them have always survived - together.

Sitting up with a start, Terri shut her eyes for the onslaught of sunlight through the partially barred windows. Zoe got up from the floor, while Ash started to stretch. This was the first time in two weeks that a disaster had not struck. Maybe their lives may return to normal. She began to lay down again when the floor started to shake. Not knowing how long it would last, Teri rushed to the safety of the archway while the others went to a corner and covered their heads. She watched as the quake made the entire center floor cave in on itself. They looked at each other because the door was lost in the quake.

“Now how do we get out of here?” Zoe asked, sitting down. Teri knew their best bet was going straight down. How, though, is a different story.

“Ash, how would you propose getting all of us straight down safely?” Teri asked. He looked, crouching down, and took something she had never seen before out of his backpack. Hoping this would save them, she asked, “Ash, what is this? How will this help us?”

“This, my dear, is an Unnam.” He threw it down and it expanded like a gigantic mattress with a great explosion as it expanded. Teri jumped first, then Zoe and lastly Ash. Teri was horrified. A historic place lasting centuries. It was now in ruins, She grabbed her stuff and turned to them.

She said to them, “grab your stuff. This place is now useless to us. We need to find a new home.” The other two did as instructed. As far as the group, Terri was the leader. She made all the decisions for the group, many called her the mind of the group. She was able to make the hard choices. Next was Ash.

He was Terri’s second in everything. She consulted him about everything she did. He was her heart and made sure that Terri did not forget that she was human. He was the humanity to her more robotic nature. Then there was Zoe. Just a stranger to the two. Picked up in the middle of the building, because Ash didn’t want to leave another human being.

Ash took the lead and walked out of the tower, following a broken pathway. Walking in the old city involved tripping and constantly listening for any other impending disaster. The ones Teri dreaded worst were the tsunami and tornado. They were the hardest to shelter from. She and her group quickly made their way to the church at the center of the city. With its known layout before all this happened, she hoped there would be many places for safety.

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