Flash Fiction – Power, Gone (Part 2/2)

[Continued from Flash fiction – Power, Gone (1)]

Monday 19th December

Almost a month with no power. The world has reversed dramatically as a power-reliant race tries to adapt to life without it. There is no longer a currency in use as there’s no access to money held in are credit and debit accounts, and cash . Nearly all the shops have been ransacked, and people are taking matters into their own hands, as food is running scarce. There hasn’t yet been any kind of government implemented. I’ve been thinking about trying to make something happen, though. I want to try and restore some order since everyone else has just given up. I have practice in catering, so I’ve found a café that’s pretty untouched, I’ve been quietly sorting it out over the last couple of weeks, and todays the day I try to get a first, official business up and running without electricity.

I made my way, discreetly, to the spot in the high street where the abandoned café sits, untouched. Inside it’s small, and modern, with neatly decorated tables and high quality wooden seats. Along the right hand side when you enter is a bar, behind which are coffee machines and blenders and more appliances which will never be used again. I’d thought about this, about how to run an electricity-free café. My answer: gas. It’s become valuable recently, but I’ve been slowly collecting it. Into the café I carried several portable gas powered barbecues, and a crate of tea bags I took from the nearby supermarket. I turned on the barbecues, and placed a few large metal pots filled with water on top of them. I then grabbed the assortment of mugs that lined one of the shelves in the café, and filled each one with a teabag. All the milk had long since gone out of date. I hope no one’s fussy about having milk in their tea.

Within an hour or two I’d set up an open sign outside, and a couple of stragglers had wandered in and had a cup of tea from my makeshift café.

Tuesday 2nd January

My café has really taken off. Over Christmas it was pretty cold and news started to spread about a guy giving out free tea. I’ve noticed there’s some definite ‘regulars’ who I see most days. They’re supportive of what I’m doing, and I’ve started to trade things with them for the tea, such as tins of soup and fruit. It’s not much but it’s a start.

Wednesday 17th January

Disaster has struck. Business was booming, my café becoming teeming with people. But this popularity brought with it bad people. Gas is very sought after, the main source of fuel to heat food and homes without electricity. Some people heard about the amount of gas I had here, needed of course to heat up the water for my tea. A group of thugs came in overnight when I wasn’t in the café, and took all of the gas I had. I’d been collecting it, and had a lot in a store room out the back; they took it all. I got into the café this morning, and couldn’t make any tea without the gas. All the usual people came by and I told them what had happened. I said I’d have to close until I can find some gas which I’m not even sure I’ll be able to do. Until then, my dream to help people is over.

Thursday 18th January

The ‘regulars’ I mentioned before have come together to help save my café. One of them knows of a place we can get some gas. It’s in the now-shady, abandoned, WestQuay, in one of the old restaurants. We’re going there tomorrow.

Friday 19th January

We successfully got the gas from WestQuay, but we had to sneak past a large collection of drug users who have decided to get through this new world in that way. A couple of my new friends were attacked on the way to café for the gas, so we lost a couple of the canisters. We made it in the end, and now the café is now well stocked up and business is resuming as usual.

It strikes me that this is our world now; with no electricity, we’ve reverted to fighting for our needs. In the long run, I can only imagine how drastically our lives are going to be changed. If I can provide just a small amount of happiness as humans succumb to their powerlessness, then I know there’s hope for the future.


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