A flu pandemic has wiped out most of the adult population, leaving communities across the world fighting for food and survival. A new regime has risen from the hysteria, known as SG16. Their militia have their objectives: to find a cure for the new world and arrest all vagrants outside the safety zones. The only way to do that is to find a survivor who holds the gene that can fight against the flu virus; an infected survivor with the right antibodies. James, Chelsea and their baby might just hold the cure that everyone is looking for. But there are no guarantees on their survival under SG16’s rule. Can they stay hidden long enough to find an escape? It all depends on the cure!
Previously on The Cure…
Beth, James and Chelsea were hiding out in a barn, hoping the SG16 Squad wouldn’t find them and their little baby.
Beth sighed and watched the drops falling a few inches from her stubby nose. Her fifteen-year old body ached as she rocked the little baby to and fro. The cold was a permanent friend as long as this rain kept falling and the first chills of winter settled in. What would they do for food once the frost covered the farmland and surrounding forests? Foraging had saved them so far and the thought of looting houses made her cringe and squeeze the blonde fuzz bundle in her arms. Her mind drifted to the first few months after the sirens were constant and the smell of death overpowered everything….
Clouds had shifted aimlessly across the skyline, oblivious to the the screams on the earth below. Pain tore throw her lower abdomen; searing sharp pangs that convulsed her body into grotesque shapes. The sun shone down and warmed the earth. Waves of heat fumes danced in the distance along the deserted road. The leaves and flowers shifted as a slight breeze picked up, waving their dancing heads in the already stifling heat.
Beads of sweat formed pattens on the side of her bony cheeks, following the sharp contours of her face and gently dripped off her chin. She sighed and lay back on the rough mattress that had been pulled out of an overpacked shed of junk. The smell was indescribable, but she couldn’t care less at that moment. Another convulsion of pain spasmed through her thin, frail body. She was far too young to be enduring childbirth and there was a higher chance of her dying than surviving this ordeal. The young man squatting next to her on the dirt, holding her hand and doing his best to mop her forehead could see this, but bravely smiled and showed his flashy yellowing teeth. His voice cracked from dryness and fatigue.
“Come on Chelsea! Just a couple more and the baby will be out. Isn’t that what they say on tv?” he glanced to the girl not much older than him performing the precarious role of midwife. She didn’t bother looking at him but continued to mop at the blood coming out of Chelsea and her grim expression did nothing to allay the fear building in the young man’s chest. His eyes filled with childish tears that he wished he could let fall but knew he had to be a man. If he was man enough to create this child and put his girlfriend through pain he had never imagined, he could suck up those tears and man up!
Chelsea groaned and felt a rush of adrenalin flowing through her as the baby’s head pushed out. She screamed at the prolonged stretch and sucked in air as though someone had put her in a vacuum.
In…out…one more breath.
And then the big push for the shoulders. A tearing feeling and excruciating agony rocked through her, arching her brittle back further and twisting her spine until the relief of the child leaving her body with a braying sound made her collapse against the stinking mattress. The sweat ran off her and she lay still, her eyes open to the blue sky and shape shifting clouds drifting slowly by with a sense of peace. It would be so easy to die just then, her body not her own as the child midwife tugged at her, cleaning her and the baby and cutting the life -line between them – separating them at last. There was no need for her now that he or she was out and safe. James would look after the baby. Her eyes closed slowly and she drifted into a peaceful sleep, the pain humming far away in the background, numbed by the pure tiredness of her small teenage body.