Dawn of the Yeti

Dawn of the Yeti by Winchester Malone

Book: Dawn of the Yeti by Winchester Malone Read Free Book Online
Authors: Winchester Malone
Chapter Two

 
    The ravaged camp
spreads out before us like an exploded brain. Trails of blood, already turned
to ice, slick and solid to the touch, cover the small area, connecting the
scattered pieces of flesh like some twisted connect-the-dot. The sight still
makes me heave, no matter how many similar camps we’ve searched. And I’m glad.
I think I’ll start to worry when the sight of blood and muck and gore doesn’t
affect me, when I can take it all in like another snow covered hill.
    “Did they leave us
anything?” I ask.
    Angelo, crouched low
to one of the bigger lumps of flesh, grimaces. “Not unless you want to cook
this guy.”
    “Looks like this
pack was on its way out.” Charles steps up to me, the crunch of snow and blood
under his boots. “I don’t see any food.”
    “The Jo-Bran
could’ve taken their packs.” I rub my chin, my gloved hand almost as cold as my
face.
    “I doubt it.”
    I do too, but I’m
not about to say as much.
    “Doesn’t look like
there is much more than skin on these bones,” Angelo says. His knees pop as he
stands. “They were walking dead.”
    I glance behind me
at Meredith who sits silent and still on a distant drift, a dark spot amongst
the too-white world. I think of our own dwindling food supply and wonder if I
shouldn’t join her, away from this mess, and spend my time looking at something
beautiful.
    Charles stoops down
and retrieves a small chunk of blood, then pops it into his mouth like a piece
of hard candy. I’ve told him before that I don’t like him doing that; it brings
us one step closer to becoming a Banjankri. But he doesn’t care. There are
nutrients in the blood, he says. A man can live for days on nothing but.
    “One of these days
your gonna eat someone with AIDS.” Angelo takes a place beside Charles.
    With a shrug,
Charles speaks, and I can see the hunk bobbing around his tongue. “If I do, I’m
just speeding up the process.” He looks over his shoulder to the rising ice
caps in the distance. The Jo-Bran’s home. “Better to die from a cold than being
ripped apart.”
    “That’s fucked up,”
Angelo says. He follows Charles gaze, and Angelo’s face drops; he doesn’t want
to go there any more than the rest of us.
    “And the best part
is,” Charles clasps Angelo’s shoulder, “It always will be.”
    A faint smile builds
and crumbles on Angelo’s face. And I can’t help but think that he isn’t old
enough for this. None of us are.
    “Come on,” I say,
putting my hand on Angelo’s other shoulder. “Let’s go get Meredith.”
    The sun still hangs
low in the sky, watching us as we traverse the few drifts to where Meredith
sat. For a second, I think that I can hear her hum, but when I pause to double
check, there’s nothing.
    “What’d you stop
for?” Angelo asks, annoyed.
    “Thought I heard
something.”
    “Probably your
stomach.”
    It growls, as if
acknowledging Angelo’s observation. “Probably.”
    Meredith turns to
face us as we come closer, her pink face half-hidden by the fluff of her hood.
Underneath, her hair lurks, dark and oil black, glossy, fluid. We rarely see
it, but I know that each of us longs for the next glimpse of that hair. When we
found her, over a year ago now—I think—I worried that having a female
in the pack would cause nothing but problems. The Jo-Bran hone in on the scent
of blood better than sharks ever did, and there’s not much of a fix for
menstruation. Plus, we all figured she’d slow us down, wouldn’t be able to keep
up with our fast moves or, at the very least, would cause division amongst us
that she’d fall in love with one, or all, of us and create a schism. We were
wrong on all accounts. She kept up without any effort, and her aqua eyes kept
us from ever trying anything, cold as the air around us. We may lust after her
hair, but none of us will make a move. Angelo had said, “She’s like Snow White
and the witch queen rolled into one.” There couldn’t have been a

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