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“Can anyone hear me?”

Annabel leaned over the microphone, one hand holding the headphones tight to her ear to ensure the levels were right.

“My name is Annabel. I’m a survivor, just like you.”

Darren turned away and closed his eyes. He didn’t need to listen to her; she said the same thing every day. She spoke about her life before, about her family, about what they’d all lost. She gave directions to the camp, in the heart of the Lake District, and begged somebody, anybody, to hear her.

He stood up and walked away, closing the door softly behind him.

“I wish she’d stop wasting our electricity,” said a gruff voice from the shadows. “There’s precious little spare, and we need the lights for the crops.”

“Ben,” Darren said, acknowledging him with a nod. “We had a vote. She’s restricted to half an hour a day, let her have that.”

The older man frowned. “It’s pointless,” he said. “There’s no-one out there to hear it. The last handful of humanity is already here.”

Darren smiled. “You ever see I Am Legend? Film with Will Smith in it. Last man alive in New York. He’d been broadcasting for years, didn’t believe anybody would come but he kept calling, and somebody heard it.”

Ben laughed harshly. “That’s fiction,” he said. “This is real life. What does she get out of it?”

Darren looked back at the door.

“Hope,” he said.

© Kari Fay

(Author’s Note: Over on my other blog, I’m trying to decide what to write for NaNoWriMo this year (I know it’s not for months, but I like to be prepared!) – come over and help me choose!)

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