The Ark of Asylum (The Ark Series Book 1)

BOOK: The Ark of Asylum (The Ark Series Book 1)
4.26Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub








The Ark of Asylum


Scott Kotrous





























The Ark Series


Book 1













Edited by Misty May Stiles


This is an original work of fiction by Scott Kotrous, who holds the sole rights to all characters and concepts herein. Names, characters, events and incidents are either the product of the authors imagination or used in a fictitious manner.









Avenue Publishing

ISBN-13: 978-1502906649 

ISBN-10: 1502906643 


© 2014 Scott K Kotrous

All Rights Reserved

For my parents












Chapter 1


John slumps into his favorite handmade, crushed-leather recliner and sits in silence for a moment, contemplating if he even wants to bother with the news tonight since, recently, it has ruined most nights.

“TV on.”

The massive one-hundred-and-twenty-inch LED screen instantly lights up, painting the oversized man cave with a warm blue glow and casting shadows on the priceless sports memorabilia collection flanking the entertainment center.

Good evening. What would you like to watch tonight?

“CNN Evening News.” The television changes the channel.

“Good evening. I’m Steve Adler bringing you tonight’s world news for September 12
, 2025; here are tonight’s headlines:

Yesterday’s attacks on New York City, Los Angeles, and Dallas make up the fifteenth terrorist attack this year on our great nation, bringing the total death toll to just over ten thousand casualties to date. No one has claimed responsibility for the terrorist attacks, which is consistent with the previous attacks that have occurred this year. The Department of Homeland Security released a statement declaring they are still unsure if the attacks are from foreign or domestic terrorists. What we do know is that our nation is still under attack and that the attacks are becoming more frequent and more deadly.”

Helicopter camera footage of the rubble flashes across the screen, startling John as the chaos unfolds before his eyes. He tightly grips his leather chair as the news anchor launches into the same monotone narrative as before, visually unfazed by the footage.

“What started out as attacks on movie theaters, shopping malls, and amusement parks has now spread to sports arenas, concert venues, and office complexes, along with every aspect of our public transportation infrastructure, leaving every major city paralyzed with fear. Just in the past hour, the president has deployed the last of the National Guard troops, along with Army Reserve reinforcements to all major cities, and he has again urged citizens to stay home if at all possible. Because the attacks have been a mix of dirty bombs and suitcase nukes, along with chemical and biological bombs, every precautionary action has been put in place. On a positive note, authorities report that a similar attack was planned on Denver, but because of swift reaction by law enforcement, a seemingly imminent attack was subverted. Unfortunately all suspects were killed on scene, leaving no one to question

“TV off.” John’s voice cracks as he drops his head to his hands, trying desperately to comprehend what is happening and how things got so bad and so close to home. He wipes a few tears from his face, staggers to his feet, and trudges upstairs to the kitchen.

He walks into the kitchen just as Kate is pulling something out of the oven.

“Have you seen the news today? Fifteenth terrorist attack this year with more than ten thousand casualties.”

“I know,” Kate replies as she places the casserole dish on the counter. “I heard about it when I picked the kids up from school. Hey, can you call the kids to the table? It’s dinner time.”

“That’s your response? Get the kids to the table? Our country is in a state of emergency, and that’s what you have to say?”

Kate stands straight up and rigidly turns in his direction. “Wow, where did that come from?”

John drops his head in shame. “Sorry, you know how the news upsets me. I don’t mean to take it out on you.”

“Yeah, please don’t, and what do you want me to say, John? I’m just as distraught over this as you are, but there’s nothing we can do about it right now. So let’s just put the world on hold for an hour and sit down and have a nice dinner, okay?”

John walks over to the tablet on the wall and presses the touchscreen. “Kids, dinner time.” He turns to look at his wife. “Sit down, and have a nice dinner.” John sighs. “Sure, babe, I can do that. But there is something we
do, and it should have been done a long time ago.” John walks to the bottom of the stairs and yells up, “Kids, come to the table. It’s dinner time.”

Kate laughs as she sets the last dish on the table. ”What, move out to the woods away from society and start a commune in the middle of nowhere? Isn’t that what you came up with last time?”

John looks at his wife and turns and goes back to the tablet and yells, “Kids, dinnertime! Let’s go!” He walks back into the kitchen and sits down. “I don’t know why you’re laughing because I was in no way, shape, or form joking when we discussed this last time. And we wouldn’t be moving to the woods; we would be purchasing a mountain more or less and building our new home there along with schools, hospitals, and everything else we would need. In essence, we would be building a town and a community for our kids and our grandkids and their grandkids to live in for generations to come.”

Kate rips off her apron, throws it on the counter, and turns to John, crossing her arms. “You have seriously lost your mind. Do you have any idea what you’re saying, or has fear taken over and you’re just thinking crazy? We are not uprooting our entire family to go off and start a commune in the middle of the mountains! And that was your idea right? Bring not just our kids but our entire family with us like our parents, cousins, aunts, uncles, everyone, right?”

“Well, that was the idea,” John mutters as he turns toward the stairs. “Where are the damn kids anyway? I’m—”

“We’re coming, Daddy. You don’t need to curse,” Erica says as she and Markus walk in the room and sit down at the table. “What are you guys talking about anyways? We heard you yelling.”

“Oh, just your father’s kooky dreams, but don’t worry about that, sweetheart, and, John, we will discuss this later. And by the way we weren’t yelling, honey. Raising your voice in a conversation between adults is normal. The only yelling was your father trying to get you all to the table, which your sister is still absent from. Do you have any idea where she is?”

“She was in her room last time I saw her. I’ll go and get her.” Just as Erica starts to get up from the table, she is interrupted.

“No need. I’m coming. Calm your horses,” Ashley casually strolls into the kitchen and sits down at the table.

“Ah, hello, young lady. Your father called you to dinner over five minutes ago. What took you so long?”

Ashley discretely rolls her eyes and turns toward her mother and smiles. “Sorry, Mom. I’ll try not to let it happen again.”

Kate sits down and scoots her chair up to the table and places her napkin on her lap. “Alright, now, let’s all just have a nice dinner and relax and enjoy a yummy meal, okay?”

“Sounds good, Mom, I’m starving!” Ashley grabs her fork and digs into her lasagna.

“You’re not starving. Don’t say that.” She turns to John, who is frowning, and says, “Later, John.”

“Yes, honey, we will continue this discussion later because we have a lot more to talk about,” John replies as he grabs his fork.

“Fine, John, but enough about it. I’m done discussing this for now. And, ah, excuse me, young lady? We still pray in this family, so put your fork down please.” Kate lowers her head as Ashley sighs, puts down her fork, and lowers her head as well. They all say grace and start eating their food. They discuss the kids’ day at school as everyone enjoys the meal; they finish up and end the night with a movie. After putting the kids to bed, they start up the conversation again in the bathroom.

“So, you’re really serious about this, aren’t you, moving to the mountains?” Kate asks with a mouthful of toothpaste.

“One hundred percent; not a doubt in my mind,” John spits out his toothpaste and rinses his mouth. “This world has just become too dangerous to raise our kids in. It seems like every day there is some kind of terrorist attack. They even told us to stay at home as much as possible. What kind of life is that? I just can’t sit idly by and do nothing, and the best thing I can come up with is moving away from it all and starting a new civilization for ourselves and for our future descendants.” John walks out of the bathroom and gets into bed. “Listen, I’m not saying we’re going to live off the land and hunt for meat or forage for berries. I’m talking about building a society from the ground up, meaning we would have farms and water treatment facilities and schools and a hospital, basically everything needed to sustain a large community.”

Kate stands in the doorway, pulling her hair into a ponytail. “There’s always going to be bad things out there that are going to affect our life. We can’t just run away and hide when evil strikes.”

“It’s not just the terrorist attacks that brought me to this conclusion but the way this whole county operates. It’s like people don’t even really have many freedoms or rights in this country anymore, ya know? Even our right to privacy has been compromised. And don’t get me started on how I feel about corporations, financial institutions, and the medical industry. Three words: crooks, criminals, and drug dealers. Okay, so four words. They pretty much run the country. Hell, they pretty much run the world! And not to mention the fact that our food suppliers are poisoning our food with GMO’s, pesticides, sugars, and tons of other shit. Hell, even the water we drink and the air we breathe is basically poisoned. It all just creates a harmful environment for all of us!” He looks at his wife, anticipating her response.

Kate rolls her eyes as she moves around the room and then stands at the foot of the bed. She waits a second to respond. “Are you done? And
don’t get started on another one of your soapbox rants. I’m too tired for that. And trust me; I know all too well how you feel about our country and its issues. We have been married a long time remember? Oh, and besides, the proof of most of what you are always talking about is very sparse if not non-existent all together.”

“Just because certain entities pay tons of money to cover things up like the truth, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist and it’s not true.”

“Alright, enough. You made your point, and let’s not forget that
a doctor as well, and we’re not all a bunch of money-grubbing drug dealers!” She rips the covers back and sits down on the edge of the bed.

“I know you’re not, honey. You know I just get carried away sometimes and exaggerate things to prove my point. That’s all. I know there are a lot of good doctors out there, including yourself, who genuinely care about their patients. I just think they’re few and far between.”

She sighs loudly as she grabs the lotion off the nightstand, squirts some in her hands, and rubs it around. “Okay, so hypothetically speaking, let’s say I agree with you and decide to do this. How are we going to pay for all this? We’re not billionaires.”

“No, but we’re pretty darn close, and if this is truly meant to be, well then, I know in my heart things will just work out like they always do for us. Between my production company and the money you’ve made through your research, and let’s not forget your trust fund, we have plenty of money. Just think, you can finally do that research on stem cells you’ve always wanted to do but couldn’t.”

“I can’t believe I’m actually considering this, but you know I’ve always supported you in any and all your ideas. But if you can convince our children and our parents and your sister and my brothers and everyone else in the family, well then . . .” Kate hesitates. “Then all I can say as of now is that I will consider it fully but with a big ‘if,’ more like a huge ‘if,’ a monumental ‘if.’” Kate places the lotion bottle on the nightstand and then crosses her arms.

“I don’t think any of our family will have any problem with a free house on basically a vacation resort and with everything paid for, so if that’s your only hang up, convincing them, well, consider it done,” John says in confidence as he scoots across the bed. He grabs the lotion bottle off the nightstand and squirts some in his hand and then gently starts rubbing her back and shoulders.

“You don’t have to butter me up, but I don’t mind you trying. Just let me think about it some more, and you can tell me more of the details tomorrow. We’ll have to get the whole family together and see who’s on board.” Kate giggles. “That feels good, and can I just say, wow, you’ve had some outrageous ideas in the past, but this one by far takes the cake. Now give me a kiss, and let’s go to bed. I love you, honey.”

John chuckles. “It’s not that outrageous. I just want what’s best for our family. That’s all. The rest are all details, but I know in my heart it’s the right thing.” As John rubs her back, he carefully allows one of her straps to fall off her shoulder. “Oops . . . How’d that happen? Oh well, might as well take the nightie off.” John drops his hand and lightly brushes the side of her breast with the back of his fingers. He begins to kiss the back of her neck.

Kate turns around and pulls her strap up. “Nice try, buddy, but it’s not gonna happen. My decision can’t be manipulated by your smooth little moves there, but nice try. Besides, we’re both tired and need to get up early tomorrow, so some other night, tiger. Not to mention you did just get some last night, so . . .”

“Was it that long ago? But you’re right, so sleep tight.”

They turn off the lights, kiss each other goodnight, and cuddle for a little while until they both fall asleep.

A few weeks later and after countless arguments and conversations about why they should move to the mountains, Kate finally makes up her mind after terrorists attack the nearby high school, sending not only her but also the entire family into a state of duress. The only thing that was holding her back was not wanting to pull the kids out of their school. But with the attacks being so close to home and the looming question of just what if the terrorists chose the elementary school instead of the high school, the decision was clear.

BOOK: The Ark of Asylum (The Ark Series Book 1)
4.26Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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