You Have Thirty Minutes to Evacuate by Ruby Barnes

In half an hour you and your family will have to leave your home, probably forever. What are you going to take with you? The good news is you have your car, truck or whatever you normally drive. One vehicle containing your family and the essentials of your life. If you only ride a bike then hitch a lift

Oh, I forgot to mention that this is not a holiday. You are fleeing certain death, or worse, at the hands of an evil horde of hungry undead and venomous mutants. The good news is that you and your pals stopped off at the shops on the way home and essential food and drink items are already taken care of.

So, I packed all my DIY tools, including the brand new ones I have never used but keep because they will come in handy some day. As Mrs R was busy being a mad scientist out at the laboratory, I was free to load all our clothes into the pickup without having to check what would be suitable for which occasion. My son, being a boy scout, had the forethought to grab our sleeping bags and a couple of extra bedcovers.

It didn't occur to me that the undead and the mutants, although fairly well organised by John Baptist, might not be able to maintain the county's infrastructure and that mains electricity would be a rare commodity. So not only would my power tools prove completely useless but also the petrol pumps at service stations wouldn't be functioning. Important for anyone planning to flee the zombie apocalypse - fill up the tank before you hit the road.

On the plus side, we had enough ginger biscuits to feed an army, I brought along six months supply of antihistamine tablets so I wouldn't get a constant runny nose and - oh yes - I took my samurai sword.

What about you? Would you and yours escape the encroaching evil dead? Would you remember the Monopoly and the Scrabble?

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You can learn more about Ruby and his zombie exploits at


Wendy H. Jones said…
You've got me thinking now. My vehicle would probably be full of books, notebooks and pens
Jan Needle said…
If it ever happens, Ruby, I'd take the opportunity to make sure NOBODY packed Scrabble. Oh, the blessed relief! Being nibbled by a fully paid up member of the Great Undead would be far less boring than another game of that. (I hate you, family!)
Bill Kirton said…
Probably best just to let them get me, Ruby. No more decision-making, Facebook, marketing, moral dilemmas, awareness of mortality, puns, WIPs. In fact, bliss would it be in that dawn to be alive but simultaneously dead. And I'm definitely with Jan on the tedium of Scrabble and surprised he didn't mention the corrosive evil that is Monopoly. Otherwise, everything's fine, thanks.
Chris Longmuir said…
I must say I'm impressed with your son, Ruby. He seems an eminently sensible young man, And like Wendy I would pack some of my 'to be read' mountain' as well as lots of puzzle books (got to keep your brain sharp you know) but no scrabble or monopoly. I would also include plenty of pens and pencils, but I'd probably leave the notebooks behind. Unless anyone can assure me that zombies read! In any case there would be no one to publish what I wrote, and I doubt that any of the escapees or zombies would be able to read my writing.
Susan Price said…
Lord, what a question. I think I'm with Bill, all for undead bliss. The other zombies could go plodding off, the way they do - I could lie at my undead ease with nothing else to do or worry about, and read.

If my partner was packing for the apocalypse, the first thing he would throw in would be his deluxe Scrabble set, with turntable, dictionaries, and lists of two and three-letter words, because he is a Scrabble fiend. If caught by the zombies (ooh, missis) he would certainly become a Scrabble zombie. Perhaps he might lure other zombies into a game. Leave around enough Scrabble sets and he could even get up a tournament.

Nullifying zombies by Scrabble - it may be the living's secret weapon.
Lydia Bennet said…
Great post Ruby and great comment Bill!! Hahaha! However zombie is not a good look and it's hard to enjoy lying about with bits missing or gnawed off. Half an hour isn't long, erm... tin opener is important as those supplies in abandoned shops would last when the power runs out. water. suicide kit of painkillers in case existential angst gets too much. knives. torches and batteries. lots of batteries. clean underwear. At least with zombies they move slowly so even a disabled person like moi has a bit of a sporting chance if I can limp faster than they can. blankets. face paint so you can look like a zombie and pass unnoticed.
Susan Price said…
The face paint is a brilliant idea!
@Ruby_Barnes said…
Thanks all. I can't wander around the house now without thinking "I'd take that, I'd need that, I'd definitely like that."
I think I'm going to become a prepper.

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