Addergoole/Fae Apoc Post-apocalypse.
Jaenelle knew there was going to be trouble the minute the little group drove into their town.
Drove, for one. It was 2019; things had started blowing up in 2011. There were plenty of cars, sure, but who could find gas? And people who could find gas either drove something tiny and fuel-efficient, or a truck for hauling things around. Not a bus.
And, of course, they were teens or twenty-somethings. Nobody adult rode around like that, fresh-faced and smiling and with a bus full of children and, what, miracle supplies? Perfectly clean things that they’d gotten from somewhere?
The girl had bounced out of the van and waved at the gate like there weren’t monsters everywhere and they weren’t making a scene. “I’m Berry; we’re here to help.”
Help. Like they needed help. Jaenelle talked to Farah and they talked to Bob and Angus and they talked to Constance and Miranda and their husbands John and Jon, and they talked to Keith, who was serving as mayor because they felt like, even if there were only thirty of them left, they needed some pretense at government.
But by that point, Jody and her feel-good husband Frank had let in the van full of children (with their children), and blankets and booze had done what blankets and booze did throughout history. The kids, Berry and Hawthorn and Zahavi they called themselves, as if their names weren’t probably Peaseblossom, Cobweb, Mote, and Mustardseed, were into everything. They took over the farming, first, and then the doctor’s station, as if some teenager knew better than Bob and Farah who had been emergency room doctors before the Fall. They took over the school, like they knew more than Constance, and even the general store.
“I told you,” Jaenelle told Keith, when he was suddenly no longer mayor. “And what happens when they leave?” Half their thirty-adult town was deferring to these children for everything, and the other half was close behind.
Keith looked far too thoughtful. “What if they never leave?”
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