> TEOTWAWKI Blog: You Took Away Tomorrow: Chapter 8 - Ambush

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7/6/13

You Took Away Tomorrow: Chapter 8 - Ambush

A new chapter for the holiday weekend. Enjoy!

Newbies, start with the index.

Chapter 8: Ambush

              Kyle, standing at the edge of the garage with a big power drill in hand, had overheard the exchange between Jack and Tex. Decked out in multicam cargo pants, a tight fitting combat shirt worn over his athletic frame, a well-outfitted rifle plate carrier, and a backwards coyote brown ball cap, Kyle looked like he was straight out of a full-page ad for some tactical gear dealer.
“Yo Jack,” Kyle said, leaving his work in the garage and joining Jack in the driveway, “You know, regardless of whether it’s a chemical bomb or an accident, we’re probably going to have a lot of company in the area, really quick. Especially if that blast was on the Interstate—might create a bottleneck and dump everybody out in our area.”
              “You’re right. If we could confirm that it was on the Interstate that would be a big help—we’ll know what might be coming our way,” Jack acknowledged. He had also shed his everyday clothes and donned more military garb. Instead of multicam, Jack had chosen the Kryptek Mandrake pattern, and had a set of matching tactical pants, a button up shirt, plate carrier and a chest rig atop that. Up close, Kryptek had accents that appeared to almost like snakeskin, but which, at a far, aided in giving it a three-dimensional look when trying to blend into the background. Jack had ditched his concealed holster for a drop-leg rig for his Glock 17.
              “But I think we’re missing the obvious here—is now the time to cut our losses and run for the bug out land? If that much bad news is headed our way, why wait around to face it?” Kyle said.

              Jack was taken aback. He hadn’t considered abandoning his home and hitting the road for the hunting lease—he just hadn’t thought that far ahead.
              “But I think we’ve got a pretty good plan for holding down the fort here, Kyle,” Jack said.
              “You’re right—we’ve got a pretty good plan. But we’re short on people. We got what, five, maybe six people who can work security? If the Interstate is blocked off and all the traffic is dumping in our area, how many people you think will be showing up in the neighborhood? Tons of people, man. Hundreds. Maybe thousands. People looking for shelter from the imaginary bombs or whatever the hell is going on out there. Situation like that could get real ugly, real quick,” Kyle explained. Jack nodded. Fiona was waiting nearby.
              “But Kyle, you think leaving the house and heading out into the unknown with all of our kids and Brooke, without Mike, is a better idea?” she said. They’d never invested in a set of camouflage clothes for Fiona, so now she wore a pair of khaki hiking pants and one of Jack’s older surplus multicam BDU tops. She’d pulled her dark hair back into a pony tail, and strapped a war belt—a padded gun belt that carried a gunshot wound kit and extra magazines for her AR and Glock—on around her hips. Her AR-15 was slung across her back. It was a hand-me-down from Jack, the first AR that he had purchased, the first to get him infected with that he called the “black rifle disease.” The rifle was a bit old, outfitted with a light and scope that were now outdated but still totally functional.
              Kyle turned to Brooke, stopping himself for a moment before responding.
              “I hear you. But, if we stick around here and end up in a gunfight with a mob of people, then that would be pretty bad, right? It’s a crapshoot—stay or go—but like my Daddy always told me ‘You gotta know when to cut your losses and walk away from the table’.”
“Kyle, you are right, though—we could have a really bad situation in our area. We’re undermanned, even if we can recruit some help. It’s a tough call, though. We don’t know if the back roads to the land would even be clear,” Jack said. The group’s bug out land was a little over an hour drive away under normal road conditions—but, currently, road conditions were totally unknown. If the roads were impassable and they were forced to hike out on foot it could be a three to five day walk, depending on the pace they were able to keep—a tough hike with an injured woman and five children.
              “And we’ve got everything we need here—my garden, the chickens, fruit trees, the well, the solar panels and all of the other things. The land has none of those things. Mike has got to be on his way here, too. I don’t think we could drag Brooke out of here without him,” Fiona added.
              The bug out land itself was little more than raw land at this point—hardly the survivalist compound that they would have liked. There was a year round spring and streams for water, plenty of wood and wildlife, and the group had a few basic caches recently hidden on the property, but there was nothing in the way of permanent structures or development. The land was adjacent to a large farm, and the old farmer was a friend of sorts to the group and might be able to offer help—sleep in a barn, trade manpower for food and so on. The land was certainly out of the way and well off the beaten path, though. It would offer the group a relative refuge from the chaos that seemed to be unfolding in their current area.
Kyle looked back to the garage, where Porter was awkwardly hammering nails into place on one of the boards.
“Right—I know, I know. It would be a hard decision,” Kyle said.
“But, as tough as it might be, we need to figure out if it is the right call. If we have a thousand people on our doorstep by this evening…that doesn’t sound good,” Jack said.
“I’m sorry guys, but even if there were a thousand people, we’re armed to the teeth. At this point, I doubt anyone would be desperate enough to charge into a wall of gunfire,” Fiona added.
“Well, I think first up, we need more intel—what’s going on out there and, if possible, what the roads are like,” Jack said.
              The radio crackled again with Tex’s deep voice.
              “Yo, Rourke—you left me hanging here. What’s the plan?”
              “We’re trying to figure it out. We need to get more intel about what’s happening out there—you got any ideas?”
              Tex paused for a moment before responding.
              “Maybe, actually. I might have an old police scanner in one of the bags in the camper. Forgot about it until now.”
Jack and Kyle exchanged looks. Kyle shook his head.
“I thought all the police departments were switching over to encrypted radios.”
Jack vaguely remembered reading about the move towards encrypted police communications, but couldn’t recall whether their local force had made the transition. Scanners to receive encrypted police communications were not readily available to the general public, and an old yard sale scanner certainly wouldn’t be able to pick them up. But, it was worth a shot.
“Ya—that would be great. I’ll jog out there and take your spot so you can look for it.”
              As Jack relieved Tex and took his position standing guard, he had ample time to think. He kicked himself for not investing more time and energy in communications—or at least encouraging one of the other group members to do so. The group had their walkies and portable AM/FM/shortwave radios, but that was the extent of their communication capabilities, as far as he was aware. They were in the dark about events happening only a few miles away and their lives might very well depend on that information.
              The radio crackled—it was Kyle.
              “Hey man, Tex found the scanner. He’s getting fresh batteries in it right now…”
              Jack checked his watch. It hadn’t been long since they’d heard the distant blast. Ten minutes at most. They hadn’t seen an influx of traffic yet, but it could be on its way.
              “Hey Kyle, how are those spike strips coming?”
              “Almost done. They’re pretty nasty looking—I used up most of your nails, though. Give me another—Hey, hold on. Tex has got the scanner thing working,” Kyle started, trailing off as he was distracted on the other end.
              Jack waited for a few moments, anxiety and impatience growing. What was going on out there?
              His walkie crackled again.
              “Dude, something seriously bad is going down. The cops are calling out shots fired…they’re calling in for any available backup. You can hear gunshots in the background—it sounds like a warzone, man,” Kyle called over the radio, talking fast.
              “Who is shooting at them?” Jack responded. Another agonizing wait for a response.
              “The boom we heard—that was an explosion. A truck bomb. They’re calling out multiple injuries and fatalities—the attackers set up an ambush. This sounds really bad, Jack.”
              “An ambush? Who in the hell would set off a truck bomb and an ambush at this point?” Jack said into the radio, sensing the panic and anger in his voice.
              Of course, neither Tex nor Kyle had any answers. More silence on the walkie as his friends listened in to the transmission. Jack strained to hear the distant sounds of gunshots, but couldn’t make out anything clearly.
              Finally, the radio crackled again.
              “Jack—man, it sounds like the cops are losing. They’ve got officers down…this guy keeps saying it over and over again. Requesting back up…It doesn’t sound like it’s coming,” Kyle said, anxiety breaking through in his voice.
              Jack wasn’t sure what to say. He was having trouble processing what he was hearing. Who would do something like this? How?
              “Jack—should we go help? I know we’re not cops and soldiers, but we’re armed and ready to go. Our guys are dying out there…we’ve got to do something, right?”

40 comments :

  1. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    Sounds like more radio shenanigans to draw people out of there hardened bunkers.

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  2. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    Thanks for new submission. I am really enjoying the excellent story. Okay, I have two lines of thought on this one.

    The first is from a risk-analysis standpoint and says that blindly charging into a police shoot-out could get someone in the already under-manned crew killed and leave the rest of the group exposed as the situation deteriorates.

    But from a plot development and action standpoint, riding in like the cavalry in a western movie to help the local PD sounds like a lot of fun. And if the local cops are fighting with shotguns and Glocks against a group with semi-auto (maybe even select fire) rifles then a few trained people with ARs could make a big difference in a firefight, even if they are civilians. Which makes me think of the famous West Hollywood Shootout, where LA cops had a difficult time engaging the two armored suspects armed with AKs until they commandeered rifles from a neighborhood sporting goods store.

    Of course, without some way to communicate with the embattled police, they are just as likely to draw fire from the officers as the bad guys when they arrive on the scene...

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Deleted previous comment due to some typos

      Since West Hollywood you would be hard pressed to find an LE agency that were not deploying AR platforms at the patrol officer level.

      The most recent incident I can recall where citizen came to the aid of law enforcement was back in the 1960s involving the shooting at the UT tower. Citizen were engaged in that fight side by side with the Austin police officers.

      So it is possible to go to their aid but communications would be paramount to prevent a blue on blue incident.

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    3. AnonymousJuly 07, 2013

      Good point 3rdman about most agencies employing ARs these days. I've noticed even LE Rangers in National Parks generally have a AR platform rifle in their rigs. My assumption that the police were outgunned was based on the dire situation indicated on the police scanner. But the arms involved could be a minor factor in the overall situation there.

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    4. It could be they are just out manned as most calls only get a one or two man responses. That would mostly likely be the case where you were dealing with a major event as well such as the story line. Coming from an LE, while I would hope help was on the way it might not be that best tactical option for our group.

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  3. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    Sorry I meant ( THEIR hardened bunkers). Don't trust just one source of intel and act impulsively monitor FRS,amateur,commercial,CB and decide with a healthy grain of salt.

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  4. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    I would not help the police not knowing where they are. then I would go to the property taking the most supplies possible offering my services to the farmer. while leaving a sign for mike.

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    1. The police are certainly relaying their location over the airwaves...that just hasn't been conveyed to Jack.

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    2. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

      I'm with you.

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  5. You could do 2 things: hold out and increase fortification and wait for the last member of your group, or, load up every thing you got and hit the trail.
    If you hold out, you need to increase fortification. Barricades and bob wire and signs cars or whatever. If you could make a make shift explosion, just to scare away intruders. It would be very effective.
    If you leave, you will basically strip down the house (I am talkin' every thing solar panels if you can, cooking utensils clothes, machetes, axes, loppers, everything) as fast as you can and get to the lease. Be sure you grab a chainsaw, bar oil, and file and any other tools for the chainsaw. And log chains, come-alongs/winches, cross cut saw, all that stuff. Be sure to pick everything in your garden. Get the chickens in pens or crates all of this. This might take a while. Setup your barricades and what not and start working on loading up this stuff when you are ready, you can bug out. Mike might even be there by then. If not leave a sign or code word or something like that.
    Don't go help the police. If you can't communicate with them, you will probably be shot at. You will be walking in blind.

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    1. If you do end up going to help the police though, I would take a "sniper" type approach and attack. If the police did not know you were there until they actually saw that you were helping them. Also they probably wouldn't be able to shoot you even if they did see you as a threat.

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    2. I would probably go ahead and bug out as fast as you can, though. If I were in this type situation, I would live like a "tactical Indian/mountain man/trapper". That sounds kinda dumb but basically I get as far into the woods as I can and setup about like an Indian village. Hunt with a bow or flint lock, until trouble comes (looters or waterer it may be). That is when I get out the Glocks and ARs and what not and to the "tactical" part of the whole thing. After fighting off the bad guys, I would one a little further into the woods. Of course, the bigger the group the less effective it would be. If you had a larger group, I would organize like a rebel force. Hide attack enemy and then go back to your hiding spot. No moving and a lot more permanent. You would have garden spots and what not.

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  6. While it is callused I am very hesitant to run out n play posse to save some cops. If they were fairly close, maybe a mile or less, I might at least check it out to see if I could help. Otherwise I fear their problems are their own. Also link up would be iffy, best you could probably do is yell "friendly, friendly, friendly", you might end up shooting each other.

    I would stay in place for a little bit, not a time to be on the road. Also the missing guy might come in on his last wind. Getting stuff ready to bug out is a sound idea though.

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  7. CopperTopTXJuly 06, 2013

    I agree that they shouldn't try to help the cops, and that at least preparing for a bug out is a great idea. They should fortify the home as much as possible against looters. If they do bug out, they will likely need to return to the home after a few days to get more of their supplies. It will likely take more than one trip to get everything they'll need since the BOL isn't really prepared for them to live on yet, and they have so much (like the chickens and solar panels) that they will need out there. Plus, at only an hour's drive away, a couple of trips wouldn't be impossible (unless of course they run in to trouble en route). They should prepare to take the most important supplies that they will need first, then if things are clear, go back for more. Maybe even split up and a few of them start hauling supplies to the BOL and getting things prepared for the others while the rest continue to pack things for the move and defend the home/wait for Mike to show up. The ones going to the BOL first can clear a path for the others to bug out should it come down to that. I know splitting up probably won't be a popular idea, but with the amount of stuff they will need to haul to the BOL, and the amount of work they'll need to do to get it livable, it might not be such a bad idea. I don't think a full, immediate bug out is called for yet, and I think they could use this opportunity to make it easier on themselves should a full bug out become necessary. They don't know for sure that people will try to come to their neighborhood in droves, although they should expect to see at least a few wanderers and probably eventual looters. A commenter on a previous installment estimated the highway to be 4 miles away from their neighborhood, I feel like that puts it a pretty good ways out of the way for people trapped and trying to get off the highway. They will likely want to try to get home first for the most part instead of just driving (or walking, I'm sure we already have people out of gas by this time) in any random direction to get away from the highway. Also, with the truck bomb and the shootout, injured folks and their families will be more worried about trying to get to a hospital. I feel like our group has enough time (and really should start) to get organized to make solid bug out in the near future, but that it is not needed quite yet.

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  8. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    Well, if this was an economic collapse or a disease outbreak then I think you could be justified more in an every man for himself approach. But if this enemy is doing an overt attack on a secondary or even tertiary city then the reality is the war has hit their backyard, and this enemy will continue to kill and kill and kill until someone engages and stops them. They are armed and they are aware and I think it is their duty to answer the call from another American for help. I'm not saying they ride in like cowboys, but they need to investigate, I realize the danger that places the group, but honestly I can't even comprehend just ignoring the call and leaving a few hundred neighbors to be shot to death on the highway. In my mind this chapter just changed this story from a bug out and survive to organize and fight back.

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  9. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    The mission is survival, not war. Absolutely positively do not go out looking to engage. The group is not part of law enforcement, does not have any idea what procedures are involved, and could very well be mistaken for more enemy combatants trying to join the melee.

    Likewise, do not leave a fortified location unless it is for something better, or for all out retreat. If there is not another group to join that is at least slightly bigger and better equipped, then there is no point going anywhere right now. The hunting lease cannot be an option as it has less resources and no defensive preparations. Only leave the neighborhood at this point if there is someplace to go that they know is better equipped/prepared.

    They had better start building up some serious perimeter cover points for defense. Some foxholes would be advisable, if they had time and the wherewithal to dig them before the hordes would show up. Better still would be a gunner's nest up on the roof overlooking as much of the neighborhood as possible. A good overwatch position would be real smart.

    Is anyone listening to other FRS channels? Might see if there's any other radio traffic. Otherwise, keep monitoring the scanner and the broadcast radio for whatever more intel can be gleaned. Time to start rotating the lookout watch. Might want to come up with a patrol pattern and a regular check-in on the radio often enough that an ambush wouldn't have a group member missing more than 5 minutes or so.

    Otherwise, continue to tend to the routine of food, medical aid, and defensive preps until something changes. Might want to have someone try and get some shuteye in prep for nightwatch.

    NVG would be real handy for night ops.

    Maybe they could come up with some field expedient flash bang devices for use as distractions/deterrents when the crowds come. More nearby explosions might motivate moochers to seek life elsewhere and get them to leave what looks like another terror zone. Or if bad guys come a knocking, a distraction from behind might allow the group to get the drop on them. But it could also draw the wrong element if misused. Setting up booby traps all around might help deter the invading force.

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    1. The hunting lease might not have fortifications, but it is remote, so you won't have to worry about trouble with gangs and what not, at least for right now. If you have tarps/tents you can make shelters that will so ok for a couple of weeks while the men are using the fuel that they siphoned out of one of the cars to run the chain saw and build a cabin. With 4 men and some children to help, you can put up an ok cabin in a couple of weeks. Move you gear and as many of the kids and women into the cabin as possible. Then in the next couple weeks, build another cabin. This might be a short time span to shoot for, because you will have to stop and build a chicken coup and setup the solar panels and haul water and what not, but it is do able. You might be surprised how much gear you an pack into a pickup truck, and you can also put gear in the RV thing. This might have to be abandoned if you can't get it through traffic but if you can, more shelter. If any of the truck have a nice big engine for towing cars out of the way, they could go ahead and start clearing the road a day earlier if it was necessary. If there was too much traffic, it would be pointless to try and move all the cars but a couple traffic jams wouldn't be that hard to clear. Just bad sure you are not to vulnerable when you stop to clear them.
      A gunners nest for a look out is a good idea though, while they are preparing to bug out.

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  10. AnonymousJuly 06, 2013

    It is easy to get in the mind set that you or your family/group are the only ones with firearms/training and the will to protect yourselves. However, in any four mile area of American urbanity there are probably hundreds of fireamrs and owners that it must be assumed would be willing to use them, against a perceived threat. Wearing camo and exposing yourselves to the local populace on the way to an audible and broadcasted firefight is probably not advised. It could become a gauntlet run that one or more would not come back from. Remember lessons learned from the first firefight in this story. While I am in full support of backing up local law enforcement, charging into the fray unannounced is not prudent. How could the police id friendlies? You don't want to become a liability. Short of being a long range sniper from a concealled position (which is not the case)I don't see how it could help the situation of the ambush. With children and families to protect it should not be the groups priority. You have the present safety of a fixed postion and these children to protect. Bug in unless you must bug out. Prepare for both possiblilities. Harden the fixed postion. Digging in, finding and preping an overwatch are both great ideas. Cacheing burried bug out supplies is another good idea. Getting the protectors of our most precious possesions, our children, killed unnecessrily is not a good idea.

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  11. AnonymousJuly 07, 2013

    As the group has little intel and should probably stay put for time being, maybe you could introduce some collaboration with another neighbourhood group. The collaboration could include access to NVG's or a teenagers remote control helicopter fitted out with camera(as they do for posting on you tube) for near recon of the surrounding neighbourhood, possibly from your new overwatch positions.
    Love the story reading from Australia.

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  12. Peanut_galleryJuly 07, 2013

    Bugging out is probably the worst thing they could do at this point. I know the highways are clogged but I am sure that the backroads are not much better. They would also have to leave just about everything behind leaving them with fewer resources at their bug out location. Yes people could end up in their neighborhood, but most, if not all would choose a less defended house to break into rather than attack a well defended and fortified house. Since they are 4 miles from the highway there are lots of houses between the highway and them that people will target first. At this point trying to help the police would only leave defences at the house a little thin. They really need to focus on hardening their own defenses. Stay and fight or possibly become a refuge, hmmm let me think now.

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  13. "No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."
    George S. Patton

    Outstanding story Brother Wolf..

    If me and my clan are safe, fed and semi-secure...I would make the Monster come to me...Going off blindly into the dark would not be an option,,yet...
    One source of intel not yet mentioned..Firefighters, a local fire house usually has first class communication...

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  14. AnonymousJuly 07, 2013

    At this point they are well armed and well stocked with a good position to defend. They have one glaring insufficiency right now which is information. Though it is risky they should start with some scouting missions. There is a firefights nearby and they don't even know who the players are, other than the cops. Unless the scanner and or radio reveal more of whoever instigated the violence, the group has no idea who to be on the lookout for or the scope of their problem. The fake broadcast gives a little insight into the tech capabilities but they are truly wanting for an ID. It could be military, foreign powers, paramilitary, local gangs, terrorist organizations etc. A recon could give them a lot of intel on who theyd be more inclined to help and/or bring into the neighborhood, especially now that some houses have been vacated, and who to meet and greet with a wall of steel and lead. This doesn't need to be more than two people, but if anyone has any training or talent they should solo. The location of the fighting is a bit further than foot distance so if there is a small vehicle or even a good bike the distance can be covered quickly. With a small number and information being the target the chances of being involved in an altercation are minimized, so small arms only recommended. Get there, get firsthand knowledge of the situation, mark the players and get back. Loving the story and the feedback!

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  15. Police will be overwhelmed rapidly. You cannot waste resources helping them. Depending on your area culture, which is more important than firepower or location, the speed at which criminal and opportunistic gangs overwhelm LEOs can be predicted. Rural Idaho, life goes on. Dowwntown LA or New Orleans, Mad Max pretty quick, most cops just leave.

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  16. The replies seem to be of two minds, jump ship, or go help. How about a middle ground. If there are enemy forces (of some kind) executing an ambush in heartland america. We have not heard if there is a power center, telecom center, or anything else of strategic value. Which leads me to believe in terror or targets of opportunity for little Napoleons. The problem is THERE ARE TOO MANY UNKNOWNS. I suggest a three man team, with radio head to the gunfire for a SCOUT mission. Find out what the heck is going on, the first objective is to stay undetected. The second is to gather intel. If you can bring a prisoner, super score. At the same time, the rest of the group starts to break down the homestead to head for the hills. This means strip the place to the studs, gather the chickens, and be prepared for a year or more of mountain man existence. Establish passwords and a quick radio protocol before the scout team leaves.

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  17. Great job with this story ! Enjoying it and the insight of all who post to it.
    Info is what is needed most right now. The group is in a fairly well stocked and for now, defensible location. The opportunity to recruit neighbors still exists. There maybe untapped resources just a few houses away. Continue to improve defenses and supplies as possible. We're on day 2 ? Mike should be showing up anytime now, and will have some of the missing intel.
    Trying to help the police would be more of a danger to all than anything. Think about it, a group arrives with mismatched arms, and camo's. The police will view this as a threat. They are under high stress in an active shooter situation with an unknown opponent and multiple officers are down.
    The retreat as described is a last ditch fall back. While there may be some cached supplies, it is far from ready for any long term occupation.
    Wait for Mike, see what information he brings and re-evaluate.

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  18. AnonymousJuly 07, 2013

    I think helping the police could pay dividends that have not been fully considered. If the police are aided in halting a terrorist assault in their neck of the woods, then the highway could likely be re-opened and thousands of potential refugees moved down the road instead of into their neighborhood. Also if a substantial number of the local cops get killed in this firefight then this will only allow the level of anarchy to increase. Risky sure, but contributing to stability and order in their local area could really enhance their long term chances and prevent the need to bug-out. I think bugging out is not the preferred choice in this situation, not quite yet anyways.

    As for approaching the situation, they have a police scanner, how about a radio? Calling in and announcing themselves could be one way to avoid friendly fire and coordinate a counter assault.

    Society is still functioning here and civilian organizations help LE agencies in various ways (not firefights of course) in normal life regularly. In New Mexico the Mounted Patrol serve as trained volunteers to supplement police in high demand situations, volunteer search and rescue teams assist in manhunts, etc. Not as crazy as it sounds.

    As for the nature of the truck bomb and the assailants the police are engaging, possibly a terrorist cell attacking key infrastructure, in this case creating a choke point in a major interstate. The 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai were coordinated assaults all across the city aimed at creating the most havoc possible. This could be something similar at a regional level.

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  19. AnonymousJuly 07, 2013

    Information is not as important right now. That's because there are two bounding possibilities with some multiple variance in between, and a few possible courses of action, only one of which is appropriate. Let's consider:

    a. There is an armed, well organized threat actively attacking authorities/civilians in the local area, location unknown. Bugging out could bring the group into direct contact with the assault. Bugging out will reduce the resources and abilities of the group to attack or defend. Attempting to assist the authorities when the location of the problem is not known, the capabilities of the attackers is unknown, and recognition of good guys and bad guys is unkown will end in frustration or worse. Staying in place and fortifying is the most viable option.

    b. All communications have been compromised. There is no real direct threat, and the perpetrators are attempting to manipulate the public just to induce mayhem. Again, and for similar reasons, the most plausible course of action is to fortify and stay put. Abandoning the neighborhood will reduce the group's effectiveness and expose them to possible detention by authorities. Running around looking for a fight would result in the same, or worse.

    c. Something in between the two above. Again, the only rational response is to stay where they are and fortify.

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    1. AnonymousJuly 08, 2013

      I agree with you. There are to many unknowns to leave, including the possibility it is all another hoax. Even if real, the police won't be able to tell the good guys from the bad guys and they stand a excellent chance of getting shot. In staying put for now, bugging out is still an option later if needed. I would set up guard duty and get some rest.

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  20. If a decision to bug-out is made, consider how exposed your group will be for hours on the open, unprotected, unknown highway. If the assault is real, what are the chances that a large convoy of well armed individuals looking like the Clampets are going to go unnoticed? I can understand both trains of thought and I don't envy Jack or his team trying to make a decision on what is best for the group. BUT, most of his group are children. Although slightly trained, the group as a whole are not an opposing military force that will strike terror in any group of organized resistance. Think of the logistics alone of trying to move several vehicles undetected over several miles to a location over open, unknown stretches of highway. I don't know! Maybe send out a scout during darkness to verify the route. Maybe send a scout to assist the local police or at least try to gain intel. One, not both at the same time, your team is not strong enough to split them up too much. And what are you going to do? Send all the men to assist the police and leave the women and children alone? Send one man to fight? I do not think the reward of the bug out location, or the desire to assist the police overcomes the threat of being exposed and separated. YET! Hunker down, gear up, and prepare to stay for the long haul. Try to make the street look abandoned and already pillaged to keep the attention off you as being a stronghold. You must have multiple plans. Maybe strip half solar panels and half the gear and load it or stage it in the garage (out of sight).

    This is an engaging, thought provoking endeavor and I appreciate all the work you put into it. Keep it up!

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  21. AnonymousJuly 08, 2013

    The events in this installment are a very good argument for getting to know local police officers NOW - before an shtf situation breaks. Some people believe that all cops are "part of the NWO" or whatever and that they are all bad and will someday be involed in their oppression. Not the case 99.9% of the time.

    Most cops are normal, patriotic, community and family-oriented people just like most everyone else. Sure, you have the occassional exception to the rule, but that's rare if you look at reality.

    In addition to being members of the communities they serve and generally regular people, they can be an excellent source for information in emergencies or other situations; training, experience and maybe even retired gear from time to time.

    Not to mention practically ALL of them are gun hounds (gunsmiths, firearms instructors, expert marksmen, etc) AND many of the younger generation are former military or active reservists. This adds a whole other dimension of training and experience to draw from.

    Anyway, my point is, if they had an "in" with the local police BEFORE the shtf, it might have been a source of intel for them if contact could be established somehow. Any intel they might have acquired would help them better decide whether to assist (and how, when, where, etc)...

    Great story...keep it comin !!

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    1. AnonymousJuly 08, 2013

      "AND many of the younger generation are former military or active reservists. This adds a whole other dimension of training and experience to draw from."

      I should have pointed out: "former military or active reservists WITH COMBAT EXPERIENCE"

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  22. AnonymousJuly 08, 2013

    For those saying the scanner info is a hoax I would say that is not likely. For one they already heard the explosion so they know that is real. Secondly it does not make sense to have a transmission like that, it doesn't add to the chaos as much as some other better transmissions would. So with that said I would think what they are hearing is real. But I would not do anything more than continue to monitor and prepare to bug out. As most have said it is to dangerous to approach the fire fight as you would likely get shot from both groups involved. Also it is just a risk that is not worth taking under the current conditions. I say continue to make preparations where you are, and start packing everything that you can spare for a bug out. Finding an overwatch spot would also be a priority as they really need to have visual intel before a threat arrives.

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  23. AnonymousJuly 08, 2013

    Don't go looking for trouble...

    We all want to help, however, the idea of inserting yourself into a police gun battle is an extremely bad one. In all likelihood if you show up dressed like these characters have been described, the LEO's will simply assume the worst and begin taking down your people. At best you will split the LEO's fire from their real threat causing them potential loss. At worst you will loose a valued team member (members) and be much worse off than you were before. Remember, if one person on your team gets injured it will take 2-4 team members to extract them and care for them. That puts you down up to 5 members in a team that is already way too small for it's task set.

    Do not go looking for trouble. There is plenty to go around already without taking someone else's share.

    Colorado

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  24. AnonymousJuly 09, 2013

    The whole notion of "bugging out" is illogical for most people. You are essentially leaving your only refuge in hopes that it will be better in the wild? Hardly. If you have a massive bunker/supply system in place...and, you have managed to anticipate trouble...and, made it to said bunker beforehand...then it would be a good idea. Otherwise, you're just giving up a prepared known location for the unknown. They've already admitted that the bug-out location is ill prepared...stay put and take advantage of the preps you've made at home.

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  25. AnonymousJuly 09, 2013

    I'm new to the Prepper/Survivalist lifestyle and am doing my very best to learn, so as of yet I have no input for the story. I do have to say though this story is enthralling, the cliffhanger of chapter 8 sent a shiver down my spine. Your hard work and time put into keeping the story alive is appreciated!! Thank you!

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    1. AnonymousJuly 09, 2013

      I think it is easy to get stuck in a mind set that the story revolves around just these characters. Yet everything in the story so far is being created by outside forces/characters. I as most people agree in fortifying the neighborhood against marauders. However most of the people on the road or coming off, are regular folks who are either panicked, lost, under prepared or just ignorant as to what to do or how. Theres no fool proof way to distinguish from those who are well intended or otherwise. But until you interact with an individual you may be classifying anyone who is not in the group as a hostile, just because they are not familair. These are people who also go to church, have children, work at teh post office and work along side you to some extent. In such a hostile time this may be a perfect time to address a real crisis which is dealing with your fellow man with the lack of that fragile bubble that keeps us all arms length apart. Yes there are people who will appear good and turn on you, just there are people who appear bad but are loyal beyond belief. It may be too deep to explore very thoroughly, but interaction with the outsiders is inevitable and may make for some variables that test the characters trust, good will and character as well as the readers emotions. But thats just me. Great story.

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  26. Sit tight! Don't go and blow cover. They need to be gray men and women for the time being. As to the bug out location, it does not sound like much more than camping. What time of year is it? Summer, Fall, how cold does it get. To many questions to answer if they should bug out.

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  27. AnonymousJuly 09, 2013

    Good Grief! There are more 5th columnists in this story, and society has devolved more rapidly than even I could predict as a Deputy Sheriff with my jaundiced view of the dregs of my beat areas. The only thing worse would be a nuke dropped in their lap. Trying to E&E to a field with a spring with all your supplies?

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  28. Green Eyed JinnJuly 11, 2013

    Rushing into a firefight without any knowledge of the battlefield and limited info on the combatants? Bad idea. If they weren't willing to go to the hospital to find Mike, then why would they deliberately place themselves at risk with such limited intelligence? Fortify and keep out of sight would be best for now.
    OBTW, many have said it before the idea dropped off the story-line radar, but they really should go see Barry the firearms dealer. Even if if it's just a quick stop to their way to the new gunfight at the OK Corral...

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