Fiction: Afterlife Volume 3 (Chapter 15)

by Mike Monroe on December 25, 2017

in FICTION

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If you’ve never read Afterlife before, click here to go to the first chapter.

Afterlife is a sci fi/western action serial published every other week. Join us in a post-apocalyptic journey through a future where life has become little more than a struggle for survival. However, where there’s life, there’s always hope.

Image by Jay Hood.


Read the previous chapter here:

Afterlife, Volume 3, Chapter 14

Where:

Della hits the town in Rose City and buys some new clothes.
Razor is confronted by Simone Blaze after she kills someone.
Della visits Ace in his jail cell.

Find the Volume 3 Table of Contents page here.

View the Map here.

Check out Afterlife on Goodreads and don’t forget to rate it.

 

Afterlife, Volume 3, Chapter 15

Abby stood on top of a high dune, surrounded by scores of enemies.  There were IAO bandits, Rennock’s forces, and even a faction of resistance fighters who opposed her, and she was completely alone.  She stood atop the dune as the forces that surrounded her fired laser rifles at her.  Then, she saw what looked like a man made of light.  He was hairless and beautiful, with eyes whiter and purer than anything she’d ever seen.  He towered above her, so tall that looking up at him made her dizzy, and she knew he must have been an angel.  He opened his mouth and the words came out like thunder.  “Abla suma solora denasta.”  At least that was what it sounded like to her.  A wave of what felt like wind shot out from him, but it looked like a blinding light.  When Abby opened her eyes, the enemies around her blew away like dust in the breeze.  She turned to see thousands more of the angels filling the desert, and though she was in awe of them, she realized they were only foot soldiers.  The leaders stood behind them, flaming with yellow, orange, and red, and they made the foot soldiers look like dwarves, filling the sky with their splendor.  But behind them was something even greater, more powerful, and so beyond anything that its mere toe was as big as worlds, and as she was lost in the sheer magnitude of it, she had to turn away, and kneel.  “I go before you,” a voice said in her mind.  “Nothing will stand in your way.”

<>

Abby woke up, sitting up in bed, sweating and breathing heavily.  She was in the guestroom at Green Horizons.  There was the almost constant throbbing of the wound in her back, but other than that, the room was as comfortable a place as any she’d ever been, with beautiful paintings of lush green landscapes and waterfalls on the beige sandstone walls, the hum of the air conditioner, and soft light that almost seemed natural.  There was a small ledge that ran along the walls of the room at about five feet, and the ledge was covered with green vines and colorful flowers.  A sprinkler system that tapped into the water pipes that spread throughout the complex kept the plants well-watered.  The bed was comfortable, just firm enough.  Abby was terrified, though.

What had just happened in her dream?  She was breathing heavily.  The pain must have been giving her more vivid dreams than usual or something.  It was the first dream she’d had in a long time that hadn’t featured either her father, Pastor Earl, or both.  Dreams reflected the subconscious mind.  Abby thought about some things she’d read recently.  “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?  Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?  No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”  Those verses were from Romans.  Abby also remembered a previous dream where she’d spoken with her father and Pastor Earl.  She remembered the things her father had said to her during their trip to the mountains when she was young.  He’d said “The rock in motion is the one that brings about change.  The others could stay in one place forever and no one would ever notice.”  And “Always look for the rock that’s teetering on the edge.  That should be your guide.”  She also remembered Pastor Earl telling her that God was the greatest rock.  She couldn’t help but think that it all fit together somehow, but she was tired and scared.  Sometimes all of this just seemed too big for her, and that dream hadn’t helped.

She looked down to see that she was wearing the white nightgown that Bernard had given her.  It was good to be out of her gray jumpsuit.  She finally felt like a guest rather than a prisoner.  She noticed Einstein charging on the nightstand.  There was a green light on the side indicating he was fully charged, so she unplugged him and turned him on.  “Good evening, Abby,” Einstein said.

“Good evening,” she said in response.

“Is there anything I can do for you?”  She’d missed his kind voice while she was in her cell in Black Rock.  “You seem distraught.”

“No, I’m alright.  That’s okay Einstein.  It’s good to have you back.”  She smiled.

“It’s good to be back,” Einstein said as Abby stretched.  She didn’t feel like reading Pastor Earl’s Bible for the time being.  Not after the crazy, frightening dream.  It had really freaked her out.  Maybe she could read Bobby’s copy of On the Road for a while until someone came to get her for dinner.  Or she could take a walk and look around.  Bernard had said she was welcome to go anywhere that wasn’t locked.  The previous evening, she’d had a quick dinner of rice and vegetables and once Bernard showed her to her room, she slept.  She’d spent most of the day sleeping, also, as well as reading Pastor Earl’s Bible he’d left her with.  Her back still hurt, but it was feeling a little better, and she was ready to get up and do something.  She took off the nightgown and washed up a little in the bathroom which was all gray stone, with small waterfalls providing water for the shower and the sink.  When she was done, she put on a yellow sundress Bernard had given her.  It had been a while since Abby had dressed in feminine clothes.  It felt good, soft and loose.  She looked at herself in the full-body mirror in the bathroom and smiled.  Her hair was short and black.  It was a new look for her, but she was getting used to it.  The scar going down the center of her head was no longer visible.  She sat on the bed and put Einstein on her wrist.  “What time is it?” she asked him.

“Seven-thirty,” he replied.

Abby figured they’d be getting her for dinner soon, so she took On the Road out of her bag and started reading.  It had been many years since she’d first read the book.  She was drawn in by the energy, and felt herself immediately interested in the character of Dean Moriarty, though his treatment of women was a major turn off.  The writing flew off the page like a freight train barreling through 1950s America, though, so she had a hard time putting the book down.  She could see a little of Bobby in Sal Paradise, and she could see why he liked the book so much.  Her reading was interrupted by a knock on the door.  “Dinner time,” Bernard’s voice said.

The evening before, Abby had eaten with Bernard and Winston in a small dining room, but this evening Bernard led her through several passages lined with trees, shrubs, and copper pipes, until they entered a vast cavern with a lake and a waterfall which filled the cave with a low rumble of sound.  Like the lighting in her room, the lighting in the cavern seemed natural, provided by a glowing ceiling which resembled a blue sky.  There were trees, plants, and flowers everywhere.  It was like a small cross section of a forest from one of Abby’s dreams.  The only thing like it she’d seen in the outside world was the oasis in the Dead Lands.  There was a table with a red and white checkered tablecloth set up next to the lake with the waterfall forming a beautiful backdrop.  Winston Cooper was seated at the table blowing smoke rings over the lake as he smoked his pipe.  Two of the copper clockwork robots Abby had seen outside earlier were serving food.  “Welcome to our petri dish,” Winston said as Bernard and Abby seated themselves at the table.  Abby looked down at her plate to see roasted mixed vegetables on a bed of rice with yellowish sauce of some kind.  “It’s an old Indian vegetable curry dish,” Winston said.  “They don’t make anything like this out there anymore.”  Abby watched as the two robots finished serving and walked away, the smokestacks on their backs puffing out smoke.

“This whole place is an experiment,” Bernard said.  “A lot of it’s actually based on the research of your father and your Song family ancestors.  Without your father’s energy business, we wouldn’t have been able to do any of this.”  Among his pursuits, Abby’s father had owned a lucrative energy business that had been passed down by her family.  They focused on renewable energy sources as opposed to Rennock’s oil-centered business.  Sadly, Rennock had confiscated that business and dismantled it, as he also took over her father’s other business interests after his murder.

“This isn’t the half of it, though,” Winston said.  “We’ve gotten things working so well in here that we planted some seeds and saplings out in the desert some time back.  They’re thriving.  There are some trees out there now.”

“With a concerted effort,” Bernard said, “we hope to begin turning the Earth green once again.  It will take decades of course, maybe even centuries, and lots of resources, but we have to start somewhere.  And here we are.”  He made a sweeping motion around the cavern.

Abby nodded.  “It’s amazing.  You know, I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but there’s a vast oasis in the middle of the Dead Lands.  It’s full of trees, mountains, plants, rivers…”

“We’ve heard legends of such places,” Winston said.

“I’ve seen it,” Abby said.  “So I believe what you want to accomplish is possible.”

“This was in the Dead Lands, you say?” Winston asked.  Abby nodded.  “Well we’ll have to see it someday,” he said, grinning at Bernard, who nodded.  “I’ve heard there are patches here and there where Mother Nature is attempting a comeback.  We’ll only be helping her along, I suppose.”  He blew out a smoke ring.

Bernard nodded again.  “Of course, we’ll need help.  Hopefully you can help us as your father did, rest his soul.”

“We were both very sorry to hear about him,” Winston said sadly.  “We were pretty close back in the day.  All of us were.”  His sad face and distant expression showed that he was reminiscing.

“But we can think about the future,” Bernard said.

“It’s a shame your father won’t be here to see some of his ideas come to fruition,” Winston said, “but hopefully you’ll get to see them.”

“One day,” Abby said, looking around at the trees and plants.  She tried the vegetable dish.  It was a little spicy, but it was good.  More flavorful than she was used to.  Spices and rich flavors were extravagances few in the world could afford.  Even the fancier restaurants in the world tended towards blander, simpler fare.  As her tongue got used to the flavors, though, they grew on her.  She was afraid eating such food would spoil her taste buds.

Bernard pushed some buttons on a speaker on the table and some music started playing.  It consisted of long, drawn out electronic notes that were pleasing to the ear.  “Why does it have to be relaxor music?” Winston asked.  “The most boring crap imaginable.”

Bernard chuckled.  “Do you like it, Abby?”

Abby shrugged.  Relaxor music was generated by neurologists and computers in order to produce the most pleasant, relaxing possible sounds.  “It’s okay,” she said.  “It seems to fit the setting.”

Winston shook his head and eyed Bernard.  “You and your relaxor music.  And he loves his sensory depravation chamber, too.”

“It helps me clear my mind,” Bernard said.  “I use it for meditation and as a place to formulate my thoughts,” he said to Abby.

“You’ve grown soft in your old age,” Winston said, shaking his head.  “Never mind, I guess you were always like that.  Give me some Zeppelin any day.  Or Black Sabbath.”  He smiled at Abby.  “I’m too old for it now, but I used to like to skydive and drive fast hover cars.  Bernard and I couldn’t be more different.”

“But we’re the best of friends,” Bernard said with a grin.

“So you say,” Winston muttered as put out his pipe and started eating his food.  Bernard chuckled and also started eating.

Abby chewed and swallowed some of the spicy vegetables.  “Rennock was experimenting with planting, too, but it was more for profit than anything else.  And once his trees grew high enough, he chopped them down.  There was nothing sustainable about it.  Just like the rest of his ventures, it was all about consumption.”

“Rennock was bad,” Bernard said.  “I’m afraid the IAO’s even worse.  They destroy for fun.  They thrive on chaos.  I’ve heard rumors that they’ve started forest fires to destroy Rennock’s valleys.  They’ve intentionally contaminated rivers.  They’ve nuked towns.”

“And that maniac Warrick Baines is back and going crazy in Drummond,” Winston said.  Abby’s heart sank.  “And some even say he’s the leader of the IAO, or at least one of the leaders.  They don’t seem to have any leaders from what I can tell.”

“Warrick Baines?” Abby asked.  She could barely speak.  “What do you mean?  He’s dead.  Nat Bigum killed him.”

Bernard shook his head.  “I’m sorry Abby.  I know how hard this must be for you after what he did to your family, but Baines is still alive.”

Abby was filled with anger.  She took a deep breath.  She wouldn’t seek revenge.  She needed to stay on the mission.  “He’s in Drummond?  How do you know?”

“He is in Drummond,” Winston said.  “Resistance reports have confirmed it.  It’s definitely him.  Along with a full complement of thieves, rapists, and murderers.  He’s amassed quite a hoard of criminals, or so I’ve heard.”  He pushed his empty bowl away and lit a new pipe as he puffed.

Drummond was where the next set of diamonds were.  Abby would have to come face to face with Baines and his men.  It was for the good of the resistance.  It wasn’t about vengeance anymore.  She looked down at her food, not sure if she could eat anymore.  She’d forgotten about the pain in her back, distracted by food and conversation, but it was back with a vengeance as she cringed.  She took a deep breath.  “So the IAO have defeated Rennock.  What’s the state of the resistance?”

“Not good,” Bernard said.  “It’s basically us and Rose City.  General Rodriguez’ army is gone and he’s missing, probably dead.  The IAO has taken over almost every town in the Southwest Territory, and our informants are telling us it’s not confined to this area.  They’re in control of all of Numurka.”

Winston blew out a smoke ring.  “The world financial system collapsed just before the IAO took over, which opened the doors for them.  They may or may not have been behind it.”

“Derivatives based on debt defaulted all over,” Bernard said.  “Banks were giving out loans like candy, and as the standards decreased, people’s ability to pay their debtors decreased right along with it.  That’s what lack of regulation brought us.  A complete financial meltdown.”

“That sounds like Rennock’s doing,” Abby said.  “What does that have to do with the IAO, though?”

“Our information tells us that they were buying up bad debt,” Bernard began, “repackaging it as securities, and selling it back to banks, knowing the debts would default and cause a financial collapse.  They took advantage of the lack of regulation, as bad people are prone to do.”

“Either way,” Winston said, “most money is worthless now.  Everyone wants diamonds and gold.  Diamonds are worth a fortune.  Everyone wants something concrete.”

“I predicted this,” Einstein said from Abby’s wrist.  “The IAO may have sped things up and I never knew they existed until recently, but I predicted with high certainty that Rennock’s policies would help bring about an economic disaster.”

Abby nodded.  “Which is why my family has been amassing a fortune in diamonds.  Problem is, I lost it.”  Abby frowned.  “It was with Alex, and now he’s dead.”

“Well, we’d better find it,” Winston said.  “The resistance won’t survive without it.”

“There were others with him,” Abby said.  “If one of them found the diamonds, they’ll hopefully bring it to Rose City.  And there are more.  I haven’t found them all yet.  I still have to find two stashes.”  She started eating again.

“Very good,” Winston said.  “I suppose those will be better than nothing.”  He puffed his pipe.  “So anyway, Rennock’s gone, the resistance is hanging on by a thread, and now the IAO is in control of most of the world if the news is right, and I believe it is.”

“Most of the world,” Bernard repeated sadly, wiping his glasses on his shirt.  “The world’s returned to barbarism.  The International Anarchy Organization is in complete control.”

Abby finished her dinner, savoring the last bite.  “How can the world belong to an anarchist organization?  I thought the central premise of anarchy is that we don’t belong to anyone but ourselves.”

Winston nodded and chuckled.  “And I’m sure they’re aware of that irony.  Who knows why they chose that name for themselves?  Maybe they thought it sounded cool.”

“I mean,” Abby said, deep in thought, “the resistance is probably closer to being true anarchists than they are.”

“The only true anarchists I’ve ever come across,” Winston said as he puffed his pipe, “were the Lepers of the Black Peaks.  Rumors are there are communities of lepers all around the world, mostly in or near mountains it seems.  But many have formed anarchist communities based on barter and mutual agreement.  Some appear to be doing very well, though they don’t like outsiders much.  We have very little contact with them.”

“So anarchy works in those communities?” Abby asked.

“From my knowledge,” Winston said, “but that’s only because the communities are so small, I believe, and they don’t have much contact with the outside world.  Therefore, they don’t really have any enemies.  No need for armies or weapons and things such as that.  I’m not so sure it would work on a larger scale.  And we don’t know much about them, actually.  They keep their secrets very close.  Very few people have seen their communities.”  He puffed his pipe, looking towards the waterfall and reminiscing.  “I’ve never seen their homes, myself.  I’ve only come in contact with a few who were fellow travelers.  Being the curious historian, I asked them as many questions as they’d answer.  I learned a lot, but I still feel like I only know the tip of the proverbial iceberg.”

Abby nodded.  “I’ve only heard legends, myself.”

“I don’t believe any ideology can work alone,” Bernard said.  He was now also finished eating.  “Not anarchy or any other.  Ideological extremism is a road to disaster.”

“History supports that,” Winston said.  “Laissez-faire capitalism, socialism, libertarianism, anarchism, theocracy, and every other whole hog ideological society would possibly work fine in a smaller nation, a small group.  A larger nation will always need a hybrid of some sort.  When you have enough people involved, all or nothing ideology is a path to destruction.  A fusion that incorporates the best of every system will always be the best answer.  Compromise is the only real way to prevent or quell a rebellion.”

“That’s not the first time I’ve heard someone say something similar,” Abby said, thinking of some of her conversations with her father before he died, as well as her conversations with Pastor Earl and Alex Harris, or Karl Bergson.

“The extremes are the problem,” Winston said as he puffed his pipe.  “The unintentional or intentional totalitarianism of thought.  That’s where loss of freedom begins.  A mindless adherence to socialism, capitalism, religion…   It doesn’t matter.”  He blew out a smoke ring.  “They’re all the same.  They are all about destroying the individual for the betterment of society as a whole.  In the communism of Mexico it was obvious.  You weren’t allowed to say certain things or you’d be sent away.  People weren’t allowed to meet in public.  The government watched everything.  No privacy, no individualism.  Everything was done for the good of the nation and the party who controlled it.  That was for the proletariat, of course.  The party members could do more, and the high ranking ones had access to anything they wanted.  It was a sham.  Just like laissez-faire capitalism.”  He puffed his pipe, formulating his thoughts as Abby leaned back in her chair.

“The laissez-faire capitalists make you think everyone has the opportunity to advance if they work hard,” Winston continued, chuckling.  “The harder you work, the smarter you are, the more money you make.  It’s a sham, also, though.  In laissez-faire capitalism, the rich always get richer and the poor always get poorer.  Sure, there’s a rare example of a poor person who overcomes the nearly insurmountable obstacles in his or her way to make it big.  But for every one of these there are millions who are born poor, stay poor, and die poor because of no fault of their own.  And they spend their lives working just as hard as the wealthiest business owners, usually even harder.  Those in power have the ability to keep their power and keep it away from others.  They fix the system in their favor.  Whether they do it with money or power, it’s still the same thing.  It’s the same with theocracies.”

He leaned forward, puffing his pipe several times.  Abby could tell he was getting a little bit worked up.  “In theocracies, the priests or religious leaders have all the power.  They give power to those they choose to give power to, and they use thinly veiled religious reasons to do whatever’s best for themselves.”  He shook his head.  “These are all ways for the greedy and the powerful to grow richer and more powerful while the unwashed masses suffer for it.  Every extreme political system does this.  If we are to survive, we must do away with these extremes.  Everyone must have a voice.  And we must take money and power out of politics.  No lobbyists, no bribery, no you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.”

He looked into Abby’s eyes as Bernard looked on.  “That’s what the new constitution you’re carrying is all about.  A centrist democracy with rules and regulations in place to see that the wealthy and the poor have the same rights.  Regulations for government as well as for business.  Just as there are laws for citizens to keep them from lying, cheating, stealing, or killing.  We’ll have free markets that stay free for everyone because they are regulated properly.  Free people because the government is regulated by outside, nonpolitical institutions.  The government won’t tell the people what to do.  The people will tell the government what to do.  The biggest, wealthiest businesses and the highest ranking government official will both have the same power as an unemployed single mother.  It’s all there in the words you’re carrying in your bag.”  One of the few times since Abby had known him, a genuine smile appeared on his face.  “The military, will likewise, be controlled by the people.  Like the government, it will be regulated by outside, neutral institutions, as will the police force.  A military is an unfortunate necessity in this world, but we need to make sure the force employed is used to protect the people, not to control them.”  He paused, puffing his pipe.  “We’ve been working on the constitution for decades, perfecting it.  Changing it when needed.  And it will continue to change.  That’s the beauty of it.  But the principles will never change.  It’s not a question of whether big business or big government is in control.  In our system, neither is in control.  The people themselves are the ones in control.  And we’ll take great measures to keep it that way.”

Bernard clapped.  “Bravo.  That’s the resistance in a nutshell.”

“Take the best of all ideas,” Abby said, “and combine them into the best possible system.”

Winston nodded.  “We destroyed the world.  I believe that to be fact.  I’ve been studying history my whole life, and I’m no imbecile.  I’ve studied culture and history the world over.  I’ve traveled everywhere.  I’ve seen a lot in my many years, and I’m almost certain that the world was destroyed in a nuclear holocaust of some kind, and we’re the ones who did it.  We did it to ourselves.  And in the aftermath, the corporate and big business oligarchy was in charge.  They had complete control.  Money was everything.  More so than it’s ever been, even.  I’m not saying the wealthy oligarchy caused the Earth’s destruction, necessarily, at least they may not have been directly responsible, but they found a way to profit from it.  They benefited from it more than anyone.  The corporate and big business oligarchy always finds a way to profit off of the misfortunes of the poor and middle classes.  All of the wars in human history have ultimately benefited the rich at the expense of the poor.  The communists and socialists came along and promised change.  It’s all about the revolution.  Well, communism’s been around for ages and given nothing but broken promises.  It’s an old, dead system.  It’s never worked and it never will work because it benefits one group over all others.  It’s just another one-sided power grab.  There’s nothing revolutionary about it.  The true revolution is a destruction of political ideologies all together.  No more ideologies that benefit one group over all others.  We need a system where the best of all ideas are incorporated and celebrated.  The true evolution of human history.”  He puffed his pipe and everyone was silent.  Abby was under the impression that Bernard was used to one-sided conversations with Winston.  The historian seemed to have a way of taking over the room once he got started.

“If we really want to do this, though,” Winston said, “we need to take down oppressive regimes like the IAO.  You can’t defeat an oppressive regime from the outside, though.  You have to build the change from within.  Arm the people with the truth and with weapons.  Let them fight their own battles.  Don’t try to control the people.  Empower them.  You defeat extremists with doubt.  Think of extreme Islamic terrorists.  The perfect example of an extremist organization.  They’re sure that what they’re doing is God’s will.  Make them realize that it’s not.  Fill them with self-doubt and they won’t be able to fight any longer.  Back in the day, the US tried to turn Islamic extremists to Christianity.  They airdropped copies of the New Testament all across their country.  They should have been dropping copies of the God Delusion by Richard Dawkins.  You have to tear down their current belief system before trying to introduce them to a new one.  But that battle will never be won by airdropping books.  There’s a lot more to it than that.  It’s been going on for millennia now.  It’s all about doubt though.  Doubt is the only way to defeat extremism.  Once they doubt their original ideology, teach them something new.  Empower them.  Then, the revolution becomes unstoppable.”

“So how does that pertain to the IAO?” Bernard asked.

“Well their ideology seems to believe that the strong are in control and the weak are to be controlled by them,” Winston said.  “Empower the weak and the IAO fall.  Give the oppressed people weapons.  Teach them to fight.  That would be a start.”

“But peace should always be the ultimate goal,” Abby said.  She now had the full attention of both men.  “Imagine if all the world’s nations agreed on peace and disbanded their armies, and all of the billions and billions that the world’s nations spend on military were now spent on feeding the hungry, giving water to the thirsty, and housing the homeless.  Imagine if all of the energy resources wasted on powerful military machinery was instead spent to provide light for homes.  Imagine if we could rebuild our world one tree at a time, one sapling at a time, rather than continue working towards its destruction.  Everyone in the world should think about this and find a way to start working towards this dream, to make it a reality.”

“Now you’re starting to sound like your father,” Bernard said with a smile.

“It’s a dream,” Winston said.  “But we need a practical way to get there.  When an oppressive force uses force, it must be stopped with force.  You can’t talk them into standing down.  Once the attack is stopped, then you start trying to talk sense into them.  Defend yourself first, though, or you’ll be destroyed.”

Abby frowned.  She wished there were another way.  She remembered her dream with the angels.  “I’m not so sure fighting is the way to achieve peace.  It seems like a paradox.”

“When someone’s attacking you,” Winston said, “there will be no peace until the attack is stopped, or you give up your freedom to them.  We won’t give up our freedom.  So we have to stop the attack.  With the IAO right now, that’s our first and most important objective.  And military strength will be necessary.  That’s where money comes in.  And empowerment.”

“I’ll have to think more on it,” Abby said.  She was getting tired and her back was really starting to bother her.  “Anyway, thanks for the dinner.  I’m gonna head back to my room and get some rest.”  She said goodbye to her benefactors, took one last long look at the waterfall and the trees, and one of the clockwork robots showed her back to her room.

 


Continue on to the next chapter:

Afterlife, Volume 3, Chapter 16
Where:
Mavery relaxes in her hotel room.
Warrick Baines and Jim Brantley deal with the uprising in Drummond.
Ayman Ali and the members of the Wild Joe Rodeo Show are ambushed.

Find the Volume 3 Table of Contents page here.

View the Map here.

Check out Afterlife on Goodreads and don’t forget to rate it.

Check out Michael Monroe’s page on Amazon to find other stuff he’s written.
Like Afterlife on Facebook to find out when the next chapter is posted.
Follow Afterlife on Twitter to get updates on new postings and other news.
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Mike Monroe

Michael Monroe was born in Baltimore, MD and has lived there most of his life. He’s a poet and fiction writer whose preferred genres are Science Fiction and Fantasy, and he’s always had a thing for Allen Ginsberg and the Beats. His poetry has been published in Gargoyle Magazine, nthposition, the Lyric, Scribble, the Loch Raven Review, Foliate Oak, Primalzine, and various other publications.

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