The Great Wreck

Cover artwork by Beatrice Myny
Cover artwork by Beatrice Myny

Run. Hide. Survive.

Follow the survivors of the holocaust that has swept the Old World away as they fight to get out of Los Angeles and into the vast open furnace of the southwest. The Old World is dead and the New World, the Great Wreck. is here to stay. Find other survivors, find a way out, and find a new life.

Let me tell you about Los Angeles during the initial pandemic. When the infection swept through the major urban centers, non-infected fled to the suburbs, then the exurbs, then the outlands. This is what it means when millions of people all at once clog transportation systems that were designed in the fifties to carry a few tens of thousands: a vast metal carnage that turned cars into glass-and-steel charnel houses. The resulting mega jam trapped the majority of those people in their cars, trucks, RVs, rattletraps, junk heaps, and whatever else they could climb into as they fled the terror flooding the city.

Let me tell you about the infected: At first, everyone bit was a sprinter. They never got tired, they never got distracted, and they never stopped. It was like they had this crazy radar in their heads, and they could follow living humans until they ran them to ground. Then the feeding would begin and a new sprinter was born. And they ate their friends, and they ate their friends, and they ate their friends, until eight million dead roamed the streets of Los Angeles.

I don’t remember how we picked up James. We survived by blind luck, managing to make it out of whatever house, hotel, gas station, or shack that was our temporary refuge, until the dead found a way in. Then one day, through the Brownian terror of running and hiding, we picked up James.

James was a sociopath and a serial killer, the worst kind of human being—if he was human at all. But we had to get out of Los Angeles, the Great Wreck, and assumed anyone living was better than the dead. We’d find out later how wrong we were. But we packed up our gear and headed into the vast open furnace of the Southwest, a burning, rotting graveyard, searching for a place where people had made a refuge from the horror of the Old World, somewhere that we could put our lives back together.

There in the Great Southwestern Outback, we heard of a place in New Mexico, high up in the mountains and far above the death, terror, and insanity below. It was called Sandia, and the only things that stood between us and it were 800 miles of the harshest desert in the world and about ten million dead. So we headed east, wondering what might kill us first: the dead or James.

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