GENRE: YA apocalyptic action/adventure
Dad always knew the world was going to end.
He prepared us for it. He'd buy truckloads of dried black beans instead of getting us new clothes every school year, and bought me a gun instead of a car on my sweet sixteen. He called himself a prepper. Our neighbors called him crazy.
But he was right. All it takes is one little virus and everyone dies.
"I'm going to the hospital," Dad told me, a couple months after the virus hit. He wore his blue scrubs and carried his duffel, looking for all the world like he was just going in for another day's work. Except for the pistol holstered at his hip.
I remembered the steady baritone of his voice, big hands pulling me into a hug, blue eyes so calm behind his glasses. He thought there was a chance the hospital was still up and running, and had to go see if he could help. "Don't worry, Cora Jane," Dad told me. "I'll be back soon."
That was six months ago.
I smothered the twinge that my heart gave at the memory and hauled myself out of bed, peeling the sweat-soaked sheet from my body. The light of the rising sun beat through my bedroom window, the sky behind it a glowing, clear blue. Not a cloud in sight.
It'd been a month since we'd gotten any rain. I'd put off leaving home as long as I could -- hell, a couple weeks ago I even did a rain dance.