Book preview for Erosion, available on Amazon May 17th. Cover by Torren Mitchell.
The store was a dark speck behind him when he noticed he was being followed. Three shapes slowly emerged on the horizon, and his frequent glances back told him that they were gaining on him.
And so began a bleak, pitiful race. Dustin leaned forward on the stroller and managed to work himself up into a jog, his legs creaking and groaning in protest. They felt like wood, like old beams holding up a porch, worn and weathered, ready to collapse under a great wind.
The stroller helped. He leaned on it and the three-wheeled machine kept him going forward. He looked down at his feet, watching the yellow ground speeding by, his feet kicking up sand and dust, his boots thudding over a legion of tiny anthills. “It’s a run on the beach,” he told himself over and over, but by the fiftieth time hearing it in his head, he came to the conclusion that running on the beach fucking sucked.
Another frantic glance behind him caused a gasp; his pursuers were closer, close enough to see that they were on bicycles.
Dustin had a brief moment to consider that he was running from cyclists, the same people who were bike cops and wore those stupid helmets and tiny shorts. He thought about stopping and letting them pass, waving at them like he was Suburban Dad, just out for a jog with his Sonny-Boy but the world was a lot different since the Earth had played chicken with an asteroid and lost, and he had yet to meet a person who didn’t want to shoot him and eat his kid.
“Not even my kid!” he said to no one. Goober was asleep, again, and that wasn’t fair, why did he get to sleep through this bullshit, why did Dustin have to deal with it? Gunfights over formula, bike cops from Hell, what the fuck man?
The dark well of cynicism that resided in him gleefully reported that he would not win this race. He figured it was time to be an action hero once more, and the dark well said that there was no way that would happen twice, that last time he’d killed loony-tune in a stroller, not savage wasteland bandits.
Goober and Dustin crested a large dune and then slid down the other side; the stroller pulling him forward as he locked his legs and let the loose dirt carry him down.
Flight had not worked so that left Fight. He pushed the stroller behind another, smaller dune, and after a quick check on the kid (still asleep) Dustin scrambled up the large dune to face his pursuers.
They were closing in as Dustin laid flat and aimed his rifle at them. He had a few moments to wish for a scope, and then locked in on the lead rider.
Dustin squeezed the trigger and missed; he had aimed for the rider’s chest. Instead he struck the bicycle’s handlebars, the bullet ricocheting off in a flash of sparks, flying up and hitting the rider in the face. The handlebars turned and the bike flipped over, launching the rider forward, blood streaming out of his face like drool out of a running dog’s mouth.
Emboldened by adrenaline and his good fortune, Dustin pulled the bolt back and launched another bullet at the bicycle on the left. They were close enough to see clearly now. The one on the left wore a pair of sunglasses and a handkerchief around his nose; the one on the right looked to be wearing a motorcycle helmet decorated in flames.
Dustin missed the rider on the left but the shot startled him, and he tipped off his bike. Dustin was turning to deal with the motorcycle helmet when a rapid shriek of gunfire caused him to flinch and roll down the dune.
He scrambled to his feet and raised his rifle as the next biker flew over the dune, the rider aiming little machine pistol at Dustin. The jostling bike caused him to miss, and Dustin fired again, this time on target, and the bullet hit the man in the chest. The bike veered and crashed into the sand, and the crumpled man didn’t move.
Dustin was frantically trying to ram more bullets into the rifle when the next rider, the one with the sunglasses, appeared on top of the dune. He was aiming a shotgun at Dustin.
—IF YOU BUY MY BOOK WHEN IT COMES OUT I WILL NOT BE SAD ABOUT THAT THANK YOU–
Erosion is a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel that follows Dustin as he tries to keep a baby safe in a world rapidly descending into chaos, fighting crazed preachers, cannibals, bandits and an angry woman who wants to kill him.