30 Days Second Semester: 8, Going In, Misc Apoc

For the 30 Days Meme Second Semester, for the prompt “8) write a scene in the middle of a novel called ‘The Long, Dirty Afterwards.'”

Actually random apoc. In re. wordcount, the actual “excerpt” is 250 words. 😉

They had defeated the alien invasion and won back their planet.

…Now all they had to do is clean up the mess.

The All-Counter* read clean on all immediate threats to life and mostly clean on the long-term threats. Becker’s ears and nose told him the ship was most likely empty of slightly-less immediate threats as well, but he still moved in like clearing a building, shooter at the ready and taking one room at a time, his team behind him guarding his flank.

The Rat† ships stank; you never got over the smell, the way you could acclimate to horse shit or even things like capsaicin. It set your teeth on edge and made some people’s extremities go numb; Hazmat gear dulled the effects, but blocked line of sight. A lot of otherwise brave contractors wouldn’t go near the Ratties, so that left the salvage to people like Becker’s team, who used masks and gloves and a lot of scented soap.

The corridors gleamed dully under his headlamp; to the left, a couple of their triangular status lights shone in its eerie purple black-light. “There’s still trickle power,” he called. “Watch for traps.” It had surprised no one that the Rats boobie-trapped their ships, but almost every cleanup team he knew had either lost a man or a limb to one of the nasty contraptions. Realizing these things were always on, you could almost feel sorry for the Rats. Almost‡‡.

“Bee, I’ve got something over here!” Thijs’ voice was thin and high and worried-sounding.

“Shit!” Ny’s voice followed fast on Thijs.’ “Bee, you’ve got to see this. I think it’s alive.”

* The All-Counter had begun life as a Geiger counter, but by the time the scavenge teams were done modifying it, it counted just about everything, including some things new to the planet since the invasion.

† The creatures only bore a superficial resemblance to rats, really. But the nickname had stuck.

‡‡ There was, after all, what remained of Dallas and Zurich, among other places, to remember.

The List:
1a) the story starts with the words “It’s going down.” (LJ Link)
1b) the story starts with the words “It’s going down.” (LJ Link)
2) write a scene that takes place in a train station.
3) the story must involve a goblet and a set of three [somethings]
4) prompt: one for the road
5) write a story using an imaginary color
6) write the pitch for a new Final Fantasy styled RPG (LJ Link)
7) prompt: frigid (LJ Link
8) write a scene in the middle of a novel called “The Long, Dirty Afterwards”

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