The Ashes of Windsor
Published by: eXtasy Books
Author : Liz R. Newman
Word Count :35604
Publication Date :2012-09-06
Series : #
Heat Level :
- Product Code: 978-1-77111-310-6
A powerful love in a lost world.
As Inari Giles looks forward to the end of her high school days and a bright future at an Ivy League university, nuclear war strikes the city of New York. She is thrust into the world of the fallout, grasping for the strength to survive. Peter Huntford, her beloved boyfriend, vows to bring Inari to Arcadia, an island paradise untouched by environmental damage that will only accept young women of childbearing age through its gates. She refuses to leave his side, for she possesses an intense desire and love for him. Will he find a way to bring her to safety, even at the cost of his own life?
“What’s happening?” I asked in disbelief even though I already knew from the message. I turned away from the sink. My arms were covered with dish soap.
“The worst thing that could possibly happen. Hurry!” he commanded.
The phone jingled on a side table. I sprinted towards it and picked up the receiver. My father’s footfalls sounded behind me. “We need to go down,” he said as he tugged my arm.
“I saw the news,” Peter said over the phone. “No matter what, you stay safe, and stay there until I can find you. I’ll come for you. I promise—”
My father yanked the phone out of my hand. “She’ll be fine, Peter. You take care of yourself and your mother.”
“Please, Mr. Giles, if I can just—” Peter said before my father slammed the phone down.
“Now, Inari,” my father growled as he shoved me towards the basement door. I ran down the stairs and heard the door slam and lock shut behind my father as he followed me.
My father had served as a sergeant in the military, and he had the foresight to stock the bunker with several years’ worth of supplies. He rushed me into the eight by twelve foot bunker he had built in the basement. He threw sandbags over the doorway until they were stacked high enough to cover every crack between the door and sill.
We huddled near a small glowing pillar candle placed upon the lone table and two chairs that were the only furniture in the fallout room besides two tiny bunk beds built into the wall. “We’re safe in here,” he said in a reassuring tone, even as his voice shook. “Even if a twenty megaton nuke strikes Manhattan, most of the radiation will dissipate into the environment in about eight days. Windsor is pretty far from the epicenter, so the greatest threat will be in the next three months or so. If no more bombs hit within a hundred mile radius, we could come out then if we absolutely had to. But we don’t have to. We have enough in here to survive for months.” He reached up to a high shelf and brought down a large bottle of pills. “Iodine,” he said as he held two white capsules out to me. “These will protect you from the radiation that will come in with the air. I’ve got some air purifiers, too. They’re battery powered, so we’ll keep them running” He handed me a jug of water, and I gulped the pills down. He popped two pills in his mouth and swallowed them, leaning down to switch on battery powered vented machines that hummed and blew out oxygen.
My gaze darted around at the iron furnace in the corner of the room, surrounded by logs piled up several feet high. Wooden shelves were stacked with Sterno cans, dried grains, boxes of matches, first aid supplies, canned foods and plastic bags. “How will we go to the bathroom?” I asked.
My father pointed to two large stainless steel waste cans with flip top lids. “Those are lined with bags. We’ll have to go in there and in a couple of days I’ll head upstairs and toss them out the front door.” I grimaced. “Maybe the bomb won’t hit. Maybe the United States can knock the missiles off course. Anything can happen, Inari.” My father’s hands curled around mine. “Let’s just pray for the best.”
The pit of my stomach twisted and gnarled as we tuned a tiny radio to 1080 AM. The strange woman’s voice ominously detailed the approach of the bomb and the ineffective defense missiles fired in response by the United States. “The counter defense attempts have failed. The bomb will detonate in midtown Manhattan in five minutes. Four minutes and fifty seconds until detonation. Four minutes and thirty seconds until detonation.” The countdown went on and on until I wanted to smash the radio into tiny bits with a hammer.