The year was NC221. Thick, dark clouds had enveloped the entire planet since shortly after the Nuclear Holocaust, or NC as it was commonly known. The descendants of the survivors called it “the Gloom.” No one alive had ever seen the sun, the moon, or the stars. There were people who thought that tales of such “heavenly bodies” were nothing more than an ancient mythology.
Simon was leading a small party of gatherers scavenging for insects and, if they were lucky, a large rodent or two. Other hunting parties were looking for small game, such as wild dogs, coyotes, or feral cats. Several species of fish had managed to survive the NC, but because of the levels of radiation and other pollutants in the lakes, ponds, and streams, fish was rarely consumed by the descendants. Few other land species had survived the NC.
Simon and his group had been out for nearly five hours when he decided to take a quick inventory to see if they had collected enough to call it a day. When he was satisfied, he told everyone to grab their bags and they started the trek back to the base camp.
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