know that?”
    “Oh I know, but my options have suddenly become very limited, and I’m not into zombiephilia. Zedophilia? Though I saw a movie once, by accident,” She scratched her head, a puzzled expression on her face as she started to recount the film.
    “Ick. Okay, moving right along,” He continued walking until Morgan and Truck came around the side of Patrick’s house. Truck brushed his hands off on his jeans. “Zed’s buried. We’re going to take the dump truck and go get that fencing.”
    “Okay, let me grab my gear and we’ll head out.”
    “Nah, John. You don’t have to go on this run. Besides, what do you know about fences?” Truck grinned. “You said you wanted to teach some people how to shoot the new guns and whatnot, so do that. We’ll handle the heavy lifting.”
    John frowned. “I don’t like sending you out there without me. One mistake is all it takes.”
    “We know that. Don’t worry, we’ll get what we need and get back here. We might go see if we can find a bucket loader somewhere too, to dig that ditch with the spikes in it you talked about.”
    “I was just kidding about the ditch!” John said, shaking his head. “You guys take me way too seriously.”
    Truck laughed as he and Morgan headed off to get their gear.
    “Those two are way too excited to be heading out there like this. I’m worried.” John said, watching them walk away.
    “You can’t follow them around everywhere. We all have to adjust to the way things are now.”
    John nodded silently, still frowning. He stood there watching until Truck, Morgan, and Kurt Crawford had driven away in the big dump truck several minutes later.
    Sara kissed John and left him to tend to the party preparations. John spent some time laying out all of the weapons they’d brought back the day before. He ran through everyone in his mind, and assigned a rifle or pistol to everyone in the compound who didn’t already have something adequate. He put those together with ammunition and spare magazines. He then brought the bundles to each person as he found them, and taught each person there how to operate their gun. He made sure everyone shot at a makeshift target in the field behind Patrick Mason’s house until he thought they were competent, if not proficient.
    By the time he was satisfied that he had given everyone at least a fighting chance, he decided to head up to the southern barricade, the one manned by the neighboring family, the Kensingtons. He slung his MP5 over his shoulder and started walking.
    When he arrived, he saw a young man with close cropped hair, wearing blue jeans and a t-shirt bearing the U.S.M.C. logo standing on top of the barrier with a rifle slung across his back. The man turned to him as he approached. John noticed the dark circles under the man’s eyes.
    “You must be Jack?” John asked as he climbed up onto the barricade. He offered his hand.
    “That’s me.” Jack took John’s hand in his and gave it a quick pump.
    “I’m John Mason. I just wanted to see how you were doing over here. Uncle Patrick told you about our fence idea?”
    “Yeah, it sounds like a good one. We might do something similar, maybe with logs or bricks or something.”
    “Good. If you don’t mind my asking, how are you folks set for supplies? Food and weapons?”
    “We’re good, we have food for a few months, and a few rifles and pistols. Ammo might be a problem if we get into it, though. I was thinking we might make a run into town soon.”
    John filled Jack in on his reasoning for avoiding the downtown area. Jack agreed with him, and they spent some time discussing various places to get supplies. Jack scratched his head, looking at John.
    “TV’s dead, nothing on it but recorded crap. We can’t get any news on the radio either. Do you know anything about what’s going on out there?”
    “We’re working on it. I’ve got a short wave radio and a man trying to gather information. I also spent some time on it myself.

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