Aftermath by Joe Reyes

 

 Hello I’m Joe and today I wanted to share a character interview with Eric from my novel

Aftermath. I hope you all enjoy it. Eric is a member of a group of cannibals called the Savages.

Interviewer- How do you feel about the Savages?

Eric- I never really fit in with them. Yea, I’m one of them, but every time I’m around them I just don’t

feel a part of them.

Interviewer- What don’t you like about being there?

Eric- The name really says it all. I get it we are killers, but sometimes it’s almost fun to most of them. If I

have to kill, it’s for food or survival. I don’t get off on it.

Interviewer- If you can, would you ever want to lead them.

Eric- Yes, actually I would. I run my own squad out of the group. Most of the time I have a good sense of

rules and order in it. Every now and then one of my guys steps out of line and I have to set them

straight.

Interviewer- What do you think caused all this?

Eric- Terrorists. I don’t know. Some people with a lot of weapons and technology.

Interviewer: So if it was a person who planned all this, what would you do if you were face to face with

him or her?

Eric- I was a criminal who has been in and out of jail for a while. My family, I haven’t talked to them

years before this happened. I don’t have any kids or anything really to hold on to. I wouldn’t be mad at

who did this. Just curious of why they did it. Look at my life now. I’m a higher up in a pretty feared group

of people. Not the worse situation I could’ve found myself in.

Excerpt: Sara

“People and beans again?” a raggedy-looking man says as Sara passes him a plate. He

glares down, disappointed, at the meal of perfectly cut human flesh and a side dish of green

beans. Sara hands out more plates to the group of men huddled around a fire.

“When you guys kill something other than people, you’ll get something else to eat,” she

says with a sarcastic smile, walking off.

It’s near-insane to talk back to these guys. They are psychotic killers, but she is protected.

Marcus, their leader, has taken a liking to her. So it’s a choice of be killed, be raped and then

killed, or be his willing sex slave.

Sometimes she doesn’t know if she made the right choice.

Before going back to the kitchen, she stops by every group to see if they all have

something to eat. Dozens of groups gather around, having their breakfast. The field is littered

with dirty men and women feasting on human remains.

Probably over a hundred in total, she guesses.

The Savages is what they are called. The group started after the bombs fell about five

years ago. They were small at first, but they’ve since grown into a much larger army. This gives

them better resources and a nice cut of whatever they take from towns.

All they do is kill and raid villages. They swoop in, kill, take everything, and leave. They

take in recruits, sometimes, if they seem to fit the part. The survivors don’t last long. They are

usually killed and displayed as a message to discourage others.

For years they tried the whole nomad lifestyle, but when the army got bigger, they

realized they had to settle down.

It’s a lot easier than constantly uprooting the whole camp.

They have no reason to leave. There are always animals in the forest. A river provides

fresh water and fish. Armies are too afraid to attack them. They can’t survive an all-out military

assault, but the government has much more important enemies than them to worry about.

They all wear custom-made armors consisting of materials they find on the road. Sports

gear is a big part of it: elbow pads, football pads, helmets—anything they can find. A lot of it is

hand-sewn and made from animal skins.

The farm would also pose a problem for moving. Horses are bred and domesticated as

transportation. Without cars and without gasoline to run them, they are a necessary component of

life here.

Each Savage has the brand of an S on the back of his or her shoulder, indicating initiation

into the group. It is given after their first kill. After a big massacre and initiation, they will

celebrate with a great feast: their victims.

Sara never likes thinking about how many people one dead body feeds. The thought

makes her sick. The taste has always bothered her. She may force herself to eat flesh when she

absolutely must, but she is and always has been a vegetarian . Even when they spruce it up with

spices and other ingredients, it is still a person, and no amount of sauce can change that.

Sara’s stomach starts to rumble. She hasn’t eaten much in days. Usually, she is able to

sneak extra beans and vegetables because the others love flesh, but the shortage of them is now

beginning to hit her.

Hopefully, Penny can get me something, she thinks, walking into the large kitchen tent.

The sight doesn’t help her appetite. Penny is in the middle of carving someone up.

“Three years of culinary school and I’m making foot filet for a hundred ingrates,” Penny

mocks as she hacks off a foot with a butcher’s knife.

Sara feels sick again. She covers her mouth to hold the vomit back. The smell of blood is

too much.

“Aww, sweetie, not feeling good?” Penny says affectionately, walking up to her. She

doesn’t get it, her shirt is covered in blood and it’s making Sara sicker, but she needs a hug.

“New necklace?” Sara asks, seeing a piece of the metal chain falling from Penny’s shirt.

“One of Eric’s men gave it to me.” A gold snowflake hangs from the end, surrounded by

pretty little stones.

“Which guy?” Sara asks.

Penny’s face betrays her disgust. “The creepy looking one with the cuts.”

The kitchen tent is filled with people preparing food for the group. There’s a huge fire

going, and the bodies are put on a metal gate over the fire to barbeque. The Savages know that

uncooked flesh can kill them. They are as smart as they are ruthless. That’s why they’ve been

around for all five years.

“You hungry?” Penny asks.

Sara shakes her head. “He’ll probably make me eat with him later.”

Penny sighs but says nothing. They both know what Marcus is going to do to her. Sara

will have to eat flesh again, among other things. Penny doesn’t like the idea of eating people

either, but she is a chef and can trick herself into thinking she’s eating something else. With all

the spices she’s schooled in, it’s almost easy.

Everyone who doesn’t like it has ways of coping, but most of the Savages love the taste

and the trophy. Eating the very people they killed makes them feel tougher. Sara would be the

first to admit the taste of it isn’t bad, but that freaks her out the worst.

“You smell nice today,” she says from Penny’s arms, covered by her blonde hair.

“I found some shampoo. I’ll give you some later tonight,” Penny says with a smile. “Now

come on, you have to bring the men food. The meeting’s starting.” Penny releases her, only to

hand Sara a tray of appetizing human parts and vegetables. “How do I look?” Sara inquires.

Penny adjusts a few out-of- place strands of hair on her head and smiles. “You look

great.”

 



Aftermath
Book 1
Joe Reyes
Genre: Young Adult Post-Apocalyptic
Publisher: Wasteland Press
Date of Publication: April 29, 2016
ISBN: 1681111128
Number of pages: 284
Word Count: 79, 722
Book Description:
Aftermath is a growing series about war, love, brutality and most of all, survival. What was once the United States has become a savage post-apocalyptic environment where the worst of the worst prosper and the remaining good hide.
The series features a brutal setting, where seven characters in different parts of the United States must adapt to this new environment. The “fight or flight” mentality plays into the story, as the nation is divided into factions fighting for control of the country. The government is outnumbered, outgunned, and forced into hiding as well to recoup their forces. The novel follows a fast paced momentum from the first page to the last word. The plot pits these characters against the elements and each other, with plot-lines intertwining on opposite sides of the war effort. And one character’s quest for revenge can jeopardize not only the war outcome, but the reshaping of the entire nation.
With an ever-changing storyline and evolving characters, the Aftermath series gets more intense with every chapter. But what these characters don’t realize, the terrifying evil is making its way across the ocean.
Amazon    BN

 

About the Author:
Joe Reyes has never been afraid to go for what he wants in life. His goal is to be a full time published author and is taking all the steps necessary to make that dream a reality. He hates when he hears about people who give up on their dreams.
His writing style is fast paced. When he wrote his novel Aftermath, he wanted it to feel like a television show. Joe doesn’t like boring descriptions. He finds filler scenes to be a book killer and makes sure that every chapter has an immediate purpose or a purpose later on.
Twitter: @JoeReyesAuthor
Instagram: @JoeReyesAuthor