The Neo Explorer (a post-apocalyptic short story)

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The Neo Explorer (a post-apocalyptic short story)

Hey guys!

This is the first time posting on these forums from Blue Bottle Games. I have a little fear linked to popularity, but what I try to do is to gain it throughout the writing of this novelette. Here's the first chapter of the novelette. The story will contain 8 or 10 chapters, sometimes if it's maxed, 15.

Spoiler: Highlight to view
It was a morbid silence. Nothing had been heard only the machines processing the cryogenic processors to empower the cryogenic beds. A carcass suddenly opens, as a man emerges from the cryogenic fluid used for hydration, nutrition and comfort. The man, having black regular hair, brown eyes, dense beard and mustache, is dressed in a hospital gown with the inscription of Gyges Inc., an old organization which led the campaign of a better health state for the US hospitals, and a wrist paper closed around his left hand which wrote Philip Kindred.
Philip stares at the cryogenic room with so much attention, he almost forgets about it, as he remembers nothing linked to the cryogenic lab, but a sudden unearthly scream erupts down the hall, as Philip gathered his wits, and with his heart pumping fast, he looked at the ragged, black beast, standing prone, having dense fur and white glowing eyes. It was a dogman which emerged from the hall, screaming like a ghost, but at least it didn’t bark. Philip knew it was dangerous, so he took advantage of the beast’s ragged appearance, as he dodged the dog until he punched the beast and instantly killed it.
Philip now thinks of his state. Very scared, but very happy to be alive. He stares at a high-tech console record, writing the labels of three people, one of them being Philip himself. He notices a place called Detroit Savings Bank where he has an account which he doesn’t know.
He looks at the window. The landscape is ruined: plants push their way throughout the pavement, as vines grow on the foundation of the cryogenic laboratory. Two cars where out there, both rusty and overrun by dust. One of these cars have a battery which later could be repaired.
Philip skins the dogman with a shiv which he crafted it out of a glass pinch from the window and a shattered math paper. After skinning the dogman and taking off its fur, Philip wore the dogman hide on his back, feeling himself a bit more warmed by these thick layers of fur and hair. He notices a footage clutching out the flash drive, and then putting it back, as the footage recorded Philip’s fight with the dogman. He felt amazed to see such a nice thing recorded during this post-apocalyptic world. After taking the footage out of the flash drive, he took the footage record and left the cryogenic lab.
A long travel made Philip see the today’s countryside of the post-apocalyptic Michigan. Signs rusted by time, crushed and rusty cars with nothing just metal scrap and pebbles until Philip found a skeleton lying in the middle of the highway I-496 where an old city called Lansing once was. The skeleton was dressed in blue jeans and a gray blouse. Philip dropped his dogman fur on the ground and put to wear the jeans and the blouse, and then he took back the fur. Later on, he realized that the skeleton had in the jeans pockets a smartphone from Altus Universe Inc. Unfortunately, Philip doesn’t know the password to the phone, as he lets the phone in its state of lock. The footage he had in his hands was put in the jeans too.
Arriving at Lancing, Philip thought the city was populated until he saw the vehicles rusted, burnt or collided, the buildings decaying, being overrun by grass and vines from both inside and outside. Some buildings looked nice enough to set up a shelter for a night, while others were crushed, bombarded or decayed, being only a pinnacle of stone mountain with bricks, wood and other furniture scattered. In the distance, Philip saw three vulture-like creatures with red eyes, glaring at him. He felt blurred, but it passed out that blur when the creatures left the balcony of the hotel. Then, Philip began understanding why vehicles were turned upside down, and people die and rot in this unforgiving landscape created by the monsters and the nukes. He began scavenging a restaurant which had nothing, only a chocolate on the table, putting it in his pockets.
Finishing the scavenge part, Philip found a bus with dead people and a dog feasting on a man with a blue sash and a gas mask, probably of a Russian type and the gas clips spent. The dog was very weak, frail and slim. It had an innocent face when it stared at Philip. The dog’s pitch-black eyes remarked the sadness of a dog losing its lord and now finding another lord, just like the tale of a dog and a donkey, but Philip was no donkey, he is a human, as the dog looks straight at Philip with sadness and depression, scowling and then looking so sad, that it made Philip take his chocolate bar from his pockets and trashing out the nylon of the chocolate, putting the bar on the ground, as the dog feasted upon it, just like Philip remembering his wish of finding this town populated, talking to the waiter about his story, but now, wishes are no longer important to be considered like a daydream or an ambition, but now this kind of dream is now forbidden, as no other people wish having a hot meal, but now they wish only one thing: survival.
The dog licked its nose and left running in a happy mood, leaving Philip with a broken heart. He felt sad to see such a dog feasting upon his lord just because food was scarce, but in any case, Philip had his hunger sated, as he felt a bit healthy and alright rather than that dog which ate his lord just to sate its hunger, and not only because of that, but because the man has a pair of sport shoes which helped Philip travel easier without having cramps and wounds from the pebbles and corn strips from the farmland and the highway, but because that man had in his backpack a stash of food: canned beans, chocolate bars, bottled water, a bowl for that dog and a survival knife.
Philip now thinks about that dog. Should I track the animal? thinks Philip.
He took the man’s gas mask and the backpack, including a green-olive jacket with hood, thus making Philip arrange his backpack, throwing out the dog’s bowl, arranging the food and water and then pushing in the dogman hide. It worked, as Philip felt a bit more easy and a bit more flexible and agile rather than he was a bit of time ago.
A sudden bang in a metal surface startled him.
“I fucking want some food, man!” lamented a man.
“If you’d like, I would fucking throw myself and commit suicide for ya.” replied his companion. “You should be sated with my pork I have.”
These people were scavengers. Two men, with blue sash, one having a girl’s shoes while the other one was barefoot, wearing a military boot on his left leg. The were both naked, except for the fat one which had a hospital gown and a jacket while the other one had only a pair of ragged and stripped boxers with hearts. They looked ragged and cruel, one of them having a fat belly and blue eyes, while the other one was athletic and had brown eyes and both of them had medium shaggy hair.
Philip thinks about these people. Who they are? Why did they come here? Philip took a look at the fat man. He looks so sad and nervous, he doesn’t care about anything just to eat something while the other one scavenged a trash bin and found a string and a dirty towel.
“Oh my God, man!” cries out the fat man. “I’m fucking hungry-”
“I fucking told you something!” replied the other one shouting.
Philip startled when the athletic man shouted, and he felt exalted that he hides well, not for so long. A group of torn papers was inside the bus near a pair of cargo pants. These were in a good condition, but in the pocket he found a knife. He is certainly happy to have cargo pants, being spacious and more rugged than the jeans he has. He tries to wear them, but after wearing them, he set food on the torn papers, attracting the scavengers:
“Did you hear that?” asked the fat man.
“Yes, I did.” replied the athletic man. “Let’s check out.”
These men entered the bus, as they saw Philip wearing the pants.
“Oh, look at that.” grinned the fat man. “Something to eat! Who are you man?”
“My name is Philip Kindred.” said Philip. “Are you a cannibal?”
“No... uh... yeah, I am one of Them.” replied the fat man.
“I am his fella.” said the athletic boy. “Just a moment.”
Philip stares mysteriously at these strangers, seeing them speak in private, although he remembered one word: kill. The fat man perhaps wants Philip dead while the other one is his “fella”, so it’s a pure explanation why the boy follows the pig.
“I’m hungry man.” said the fat man in a sadistic tone. “Do you have food?”
“Yes, would you like eating beans?” asked Philip.
“I’d like one can.” replied the boy. “But the fat man dislikes beans, but you know what does he like?”
“Me?” asked confused Philip.
“Yeah! You are too hot and too delicious to let you live, fucker!” screamed the fat man, readying his baseball bat.
Philip jumps on a window from the bus, eventually breaking one of his toes from the left leg. The fat man charges, but Philip parries the man’s bat, until they struggle to charge equilibrium until somehow, Philip hits the fat man in the groin, eventually taking the knife and stabbing the man in the belly. Blood sprayed the overgrown concrete, as the man coughs blood and bleeds to death.
The athletic boy looks scared seeing the pig bleeding, as he ran like a scared rabbit until Philip suddenly hears a gunshot. He heard someone shooting, so he did go check out who’s there. It was a special man, one dressed in a long leather coat with a police vest beneath the coat, a pair of rugged cargo pants, black leather boots, a gas mask and a helmet. He had a rifle with a scope, a strap and a packet of ammo surrounding his torso. He had a backpack on his back, perhaps enriched in food, water, supplies and ammo.
“I have no quarrel with you, son.” said the man. He looked like a ranger, a soldier or a hired mercenary, or even a bounty hunter. “Have you heard of ATM Enclave? It’s our base. If you ever go there, you should talk to our leader, Michelle. She can help you with the wounds you carry and she can ensure you taking the brown and hunting Bad Muthas.”
“Right...” mumbled Philip.
“It’s situated in the north, not much from Zom Zom’s and from Mt. Pleasant.” continued the ranger.
“Thank you sir.” replied Philip. “I wanted to say something I- ... ah, about the world.”
“Aye, the world ended bad, more worse than a world may end. Since humanity began fighting for resources and supremacy, the government took control over the common people, making us riot for our lives, but many died not because of the government, but because of something which emerged from the forests. Monsters. Supernatural monsters.” The soldier’s voice was somber and dark as he told the story about the world.
“And what monsters?” curiously asked Philip.
“Mothmen, owlmen, melonheads, dogmen, and all those sort of things. Practically, cryptids.” somberly replied the ranger. “Do you take interest in cryptid folklore?”
“No, but I fought a dogman.” answered Philip.
“My dear God, how did you manage to stay alive?”
“I kicked that scumbag.”
“Wow.” The ranger remained amazed when he heard Philip’s serious answer and mode of killing the dogman. “No man could stand a chance against these dogmen. They are fierce, fiercer and wilder than ever. Many scavengers like you died because of them, so you’d better watch your back.”
“And how your haven looks like sir?” asked Philip.
“Well, we are a tribal race of people, kind, strong and sincere, always collaborating to make our community more larger and more powerful and to crush the monsters and the roamers. If you ever stumble across the Enclave, it would be a shame to be so stupid, even our faces you don’t recognize. We look like the Native Americans from the past: Apache, Lakotans, you know, and we all have indian masks.” spoke the warrior, hearing his voice blurred by the gas mask.
“And then why don’t you have one?”
“I quit the watch and I am now tasked to find another haven. Indianapolis.”
“What about that city?” asked confused Philip.
“You truly are stupid-”
“I’m not!” trembled Philip. “Look, this is a long story linked to these dogmen. I am Philip Kindred, and I have an account to a bank from Detroit and I woke from cryogenic sleep.”
“Yes.” mumbled Philip, thinking about his apologies to speak next to the ranger.
“You slept these years, staying in a cryogenic state?” said the ranger.
“I did.” replied Philip. “I know nothing about my past.”
“Well, Indianapolis is supposed to be another haven, just like DMC.” spoke the ranger. “Well, I think you could fit as a wanderer, or a bounty hunter like me. I wish you good luck and another thing: don’t trust anyone.” And then he continued: “Lying or acting in a treacherous mood is like a snake forcing you to eat the unmatched apple. And before I go or when you arrive in Indianapolis, you can remember me as Frank. Wish you my best and good luck!”
“You too, Frank!”
Philip smiled at Frank, as he looked past to see Philip, but he disappeared in a matter of seconds. Philip continues to explore the lands, but now he heads north to find the Enclave Frank was talking about.

"Humanity is crushed by supernatural monsters, nuclear winter, economic breakdown and riots. We can't stand a chance against the monsters, but we can stand against the government, because war will never change, and it won't change." - Hunter, Nukeworld