She looked at what used to be a bank, the door blown out, siding of the stone were wasting away quicker then usual. Her world was slowly disappearing and there was nothing she could do. She leaned up buttoning her long black coat, trying to protect her self from the dull chill in the air. She began to walk down what was once a busy street, brushing her shins against the fabric of her coat as she walked. Listening to the crunching sound of broken glass, rocks, and ice under her boots. The wind tugged at her long hair, which was pulled up into a tight ponytail with an old ragged hair tie. She stopped walking and glanced around her setting looking for some one.

"Give me your coat." A rough voice said behind her. The girl rolled her eyes and mumbled something to herself. She turned to see a man wearing a woman's fur coat holding a broken bottle. He was glaring at her then moving his eyes to her boots. "Your boots too, now." She stepped up to him looking down on him.

"…. No." She glared down at the man as he sneered at her. The man yelled and threw himself toward her with the bottle. In one smooth movement she dodged the bottle pulling out her sword hitting him in back of the head. He crumpled to the ground unconscious.

"Joan, do you have to kill every one we meet?"

"It was the dull end Ariel, he's not dead." Joan side glanced to see a girl standing in another destroyed doorway.

"Big difference." Ariel was not a short girl, but compared to Joan's tall stature most would seem short. She was of normal height, blue eyes and dark brown shoulder length hair. She had a fresh scar under one eye but other then that she seemed to a nice to look at. She wore same style that Joan wore, only her hair down and her jacket shorter. She always seemed to be smiling, unusual for her environment.

"You find anymore supplies?"

"Nothing except these snazzy sun glasses." Ariel got a crooked grin and put the glasses on giving Joan thumbs up.

"What's the use of sun glasses with the over cast?"

"Well I don't know about you, but with that hunk of junk bike of yours I've had my share of smoke and dust in my eyes." Joan narrowed her eyes at Ariel and walked back to her motorcycle starting it up.

"We had better head back, we have been gone for three days. They might want to know we are alive."

"Lets go to one more building. If we wait one more day we can see if we interrupt our own funeral again."

"No, we go now. We are already low on gas and food."

"Please?"

"No, now get on." Ariel lazily dropped her weight on the motorcycle and grumbled under her breath.

"Your no fun."

"Never been accused of the opposite have I?" Joan pulled back on the gas and the sped off to the highway.

***

Firen was a tall, nicely set young man, about the age twenty-four. He had dark blue eyes and black hair that covered those eyes from the view of the rest of the people living in the city. He already had to many mix-ins with girls before; He swore he didn't like them. He was very handsome and that was hard to find in this one certain under ground city. The city was named Condre, Dirt Ville to the nearest comedian. Firen was Condre's only willing mechanic, so he had a workspace about the size of a basketball court to fix any and every motorized mechanism in the city. At this point and time he was pacing in front of the city's gates, where he had been for the last two days.

"They're dead." a young boy was standing on the gate watching Firen pace.

"If I wanted your opinion I'd ask, now get."

"Just sayin' Firen, anyone who had been gone for more then two days are dead when they get back." Firen kicked up some dust at the boy causing him to run off.

"Annoying little-"

"Hey FiFi!" Ariel jumped onto Firen's back causing him to fall over in surprise. Ariel sat on his back with the usual grin on her face.

"Don't do that! I was expecting to hear the bike."

"It ran out of gas about a half of a mile back. I had to push it the rest of the way." Joan said while pushing it down the ramp.

"Oh, well next time don't stay out so long. People above the surface are a bit strange."

"I take care of my self and Ariel, we don't need to be worried over." Joan walked through the gate leaving them behind and the motorcycle. There was silence until Ariel patted Firen on the back.

"FiFi, she needs to get laid."

"That's no one's business, and quit calling me FiFi! Damn it! get off of me." Ariel got off of Firen's back and helped him up. She pulled out a bag and started to rummage through it.

"What are you doing?"

"Joan and I found some stuff the other day, nothing today though. I'm just digging out the stuff I want to keep before the horde rips the rest apart." Firen started to push the bike around the gate into his garage.

"If there is any way you can FiFi, make an extra seat on that thing. My butt hurts like hell after I get off that bike."

"I'll think about it if you stop calling me FiFi." Ariel started to walk through the gate.

"Ok Renny, but make sure its a big seat."

"Damn it! Ariel!" Firen called out but Ariel was already gone.

***
All the head of house hold men were called elders. They were gathered in the garage as Firen pushed the motorcycle in.

"Firen, have the last of the scouts come back?"

"Yes, they just got in."

"That Joan is reckless, she stays out to long. She needs to settle down, we need her here. She is just as good mechanic as Firen." One of the elders looked at Firen in the corner of his eye.

"Hey!" Firen furrowed his brow at the elders.

"Back to the matter at hand, one of the scouts found a new source of water. We don't have to worry about the bathing problem anymore. Firen, let 10 people a day come to the garage to use the showers, no more. We will have to refill it once a day." One of the shorter elder's stroked his beard while pointing to the shower.

"I get the first shower." Joan walked into the room tossing her jacket on a parked car.

"Joan, we were just discussing your situation."

"What situation? I am good where I am. I come back with the most supplies and rations using less gas. I more use to use as a scout."

"But-"

"If you would please excuse me, I need a shower. We aren't running a peep show so leave if you would be so kind." The elders walked out of the front doors of the garage rambling on between them selves angrily.

"They just have your best intentions at heart." Firen picked up her coat setting it on the coat rack.

"To me they don't have hearts."

"Some say the same about you."

"Just because I don't show up at parties and celebrations and don't get all perky like the other girls. There is nothing to celebrate over, we have only a few hundred people left out how many thousands were in this boundary?" Joan tugged out the hair tie letting her golden brown hair fall onto her back.
"At least we are alive."

"Just drop it, I want to bath not be lectured on life." She pulled up her shirt yanking it off throwing it at Firen. Firen turned in embarrassment.

"I'm still wearing my under shirt, don't feel lucky Firen. Besides, I thought you didn't like girls?"

"I don't like girls because they are to annoying, I'm not like those prissy men on men type of guys."

"Could have fooled me." Firen furrowed his brow and turned glaring at Joan, only to turn back around from the site of her naked.

"Ok, now you're just a pervert."

"I didn't know ok?" The shower started to run and he let out a sigh of relief. He really hated it when she teased him.

***

Ariel was brushing her hair while walking to the showers. Joan always seems to walk off in one of her moods when they just got back from a scouting. Although showing signs she was finally easing up, she didn't kill the guy who wanted her clothes. The old Joan she knew before all of this would have killed the man out in a heart beat. Ariel's thoughts were disturbed when she reached the garage. She looked through to see wrenching on the motorcycle complaining to his self.

"Hey FiFi, what's up."

"Has Joan always been like this? Ever since you and her came here a couple of years ago she's been avoiding a decent conversation with everyone but you."

"Well...she hasn't always been like this. A couple of years before I met her she lost everything she cared for."

"Well every one lost something, every one lost their homes when the earth quakes and floods happened, and the people who didn't lost it to having to go under ground from the over cast."

"I don't mean possessions, she lost everything she cared for as in people wise."

"Ariel shut up and go take a shower, you smell worse then Firen." Joan walked out wearing a fresh black t-shirt and black jeans. She tossed the towel at Ariel making it wrap around her face stopping her from saying anymore.

"Firen, I want a way to be able to carry more gas and food so Ariel and I can go further then just the nearby city ruins."

"You go far enough as it is, you don't need to go passed any borders just to get more supplies yet. There is still plenty to be found with in this zone."

"I don't care, I'm tired of scrapping up expired twinkies to feed these people. Build me an attachment." Firen sighed and set down his wrench. He side glanced at Joan who was braiding her hair out of her way. She had a nice figure and smooth looking skin and long silky hair. She was very womanly looking for the age of twenty-two, but covered it up with boyish clothing and a bad additude. She didn't act like other girls, that's what attracted Firen to her. She also was very smart and beautiful, this attracted him more. He hated girls, but he cared for Joan. Joan wasn't a girl, Joan was Joan. He quirked the side of his mouth a bit and stepped towards her.

"I'll build the attachment on one condition."

"What?"

"There will be a celebration for finding more water, that is something to celebrate. I want you to come with me."

"Why with you?"

"Like an escort or something like that."

"A date?"

"I guess you could put it that way." Joan eyed him suspiciously then sighed rubbing her temples. She pulled her boots on and walked out the door.

"I'll think about it." Firen smirked. He had a date.

"Alright FiFi! Get her laid ok? Show her you're not a prissy man!" Ariel whipped her towel at him from behind.

"Damn it, Ariel!"

Author's note******

This is my first baby, first book I ever wrote. It is number one in I hope to be a whole series. Hope you guys like it.

-SMP