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Nemesis by Peter Truter
SUMMARY: It is many years since the bombs fell that signaled Armageddon. The world is a harsh unforgiving place where only hardest and toughest survive.One of these survivors is a man called Nemesis, and this is his tale.
Barely daring to breathe Nemesis held his position and watched the terrified gunman shoot glances left, right, up, and behind him as he stumbled over the rubble, heading for the exit and a false sense of security.
He was the last of his crew that foolishly decided to go looting deep in the Hell Zone. Four other raiders lay spread out in the ruins, dead, not knowing what hit them. Nemesis hardly wished to waist a valuable bullet on this trash so he held his wicked pig-sticker low, ready to strike.
The man tripped and fell, but was back up panning 360 degrees with his sawn off 12gauge. He was sweating and panting and could no doubt hear his own heartbeat as a thunderous crescendo in his own ears. The barrel of the shotgun passed inches in front of the unseen Nemesis.
Once it passed the veteran enforcer slid silently from his ambush point and calmly drew the blade across the hapless mans jugular. With a gargle and a cough the man dropped and his life ebbed away with the passing of his blood into the rubble. Nemesis leaned down and wiped the traces of blood from his blade with the dead man's shirt.
Standing 5'9" and weighing in at a mere 170lbs Nemesis was fairly unassuming at first glance. The fact he wore a pair of worn in Hi-Tech Magnums, faded urban camo pants, and a grey long sleeve sweatshirt most of the time, might have alerted one to the fact that he was more than he seemed. It was really the eyes, the sturdy jaw and the shaved scalp that together was unnerving, to have stare at you. It was like a mental dissection.
He methodically collected up the few useful items the crew had and dumped them in his heavily armored 4x4 ‘Hummer'. It only amounted to two double barrel shotguns, both sawn off, eight rounds of 12gauge, and a fairly sturdy pair of biker boots. The rest were crappy home-made melee weapons and tattered clothes. What food they had with them was way off and the water registered radio-active on Nemesis's Geiger counter.
He slipped into the driver seat and gunned the 5litre V8 to life. He made his way out of the Hell Zone and headed back to ‘The Palace', that place he called home. On the way there he passed dozens of skeletal remains of once proud buildings.
What once was the heart of the thriving metropolis was now nothing more than ruins. For almost ten years the ruins played host to life and death struggles on a daily basis as survivors of the Apocalypse struggled to survive. Nemesis, as he was now known, was one of those survivors. He was one of the luckier ones. He also had another name but after ten years he barely remembered it and thought about it less.
Once he had been a bright young man full of potential back on ‘Old Earth'. Then the world tried to destroy itself, and when the dust settled, a handful of survivors were left to try and carry on. Nemesis adapted fast and learnt how to kill and how to avoid being killed. Ten years on he was one of the more feared men in Megacity, as the ruins were now known. No-one and nothing seemed to cling onto the old ways.
Once out of the Hell Zone he began to see dirty, starving survivors picking through rubble eking out an existence.