Author Feature – from ‘Refuge’ by Regina Jackson Stinnett

Lyric pulled the Beatle CDs out of her backpack and pushed the button to start the CD player. George Jones was just finishing ’He stopped loving her today’ and Lyric looked at the CD player like it had barked at her. “Bubby, whos that?” she asked, pushing eject, removing the disc and placing a Beatles CD in its place.
“That’s George Jones. He’s dead now but he used to be real popular where we lived. He was a country music singer.” replied Dakota “Well he can’t be too popular, I’ve never heard of him.” said Lyric.
“You’re seven, Lyric, There’s a lot of things you’ve never heard of,” said Dakota laughing.
The soldiers were never far from Dakotas thoughts as they got farther and farther away from Findlay. He wondered how many healthy people would be shot by them.
Remembering back to the gunshots they had heard before, he wondered if perhaps there were soldiers stationed in all of the larger towns. ’If there are’ he thought to himself ’I hope we don’t run into any more of them.’ Tired of coloring, Lyric put her book and crayons away then began looking through the glove box.
“Bubby, why is this called the glove box?” she asked. Then began pulling out papers, a small hand sanitizer and a travel sized packet of tissues.
“I’m not sure Sissie. I think its probably because it was originally invented for gloves, and things. Then people started using them for important papers, sunglasses and anything that would fit. What did you find in there? Anything interesting?”
“No, just regular junk,” she replied as she placed all of the items back into the glove box.
“Keep that hand sanitizer out Sis”, said Dakota reaching for it. “It will help us keep our hands clean or at least germ free, since our bottle ran out.” He popped the lid on the sanitizer and squeezed a small amount into his left hand.
He then handed the container back to Lyric so she could use it. “I feel better,” he said as he rubbed his hands together spreading the sanitizer over both hands.
The smell of alcohol filled the truck cab.
Dakota noticed that the soldiers had left their mark all along the interstate.
He assumed that perhaps the whole group had come from the North, probably Toledo and were working their way South. Hopefully they continue South he thought. It would be better if they did, because he and Lyric wouldn’t have to run into them. Dakota knew they should stop somewhere and try to rest for the night. They would be running out of daylight by the time they got to Michigan and Dakota didn’t want to be near any big cities in the dark. The undead that were walking around in the daylight were spooky enough…..he didn’t want to see them by the headlights of the truck. ’That,’ he thought to himself ’would be way too creepy.’
“Lyric watch for a semi or another billboard like the one we slept on before.”

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