The prompt song was:
Faded Flowers, by Shriekback
Gavin pulled the blanket up over her face, trying to feel something, but only numbness came. There was so much death now it was hard to have any other reaction. Then he stood and viewed the barren room, walking over the bare concrete floor to the window, where he looked out over the dead city. He had to get out of here; he knew that; the clock was ticking. He could hear it in his head.
He glanced back at Trisha’s body. He still couldn’t bring an emotion. They both knew she was going to succumb, and he did the right thing finding this quiet place for her to pass, but now what? Was he next? He didn’t feel it; he felt okay.
He had to go, but he lingered. He might not be able to feel sadness or love, but leaving Trish here, it felt wrong. But where was there to bury someone in a city? An empty city at that – well empty of people, you couldn’t move for debris.
He went back over to her body and squatted down. He pulled the blanket back again and looked at her silent face. He brushed a finger along her white cheek, and bent down to kiss it. The only thing he felt was a hole, a big empty hole in his gut. He was alone now.
He flicked the blanket back and left the apartment without allowing a further thought.
He took the stairs, running down them at high speed, so the twenty-five flights went by fast, allowing his mind to become a blur along with the stairwell.
At the bottom he pushed out into the street and stood completely still. Waiting. He could hear the wind, and the debris being tossed around by it, and a banging from a loose door a few blocks down, but there were no deliberate sounds, either human or animal.
Everything was gone, and he had to go too.
He looked around at the cars all bunched up in the roads and started jogging along the streets he knew would take him out, watching the jams thicken, observing how the human race was so predictable.
When he reached the outskirts he stopped, the road ahead a trail of yet more vehicles, and considered what to do. That was when he heard it, a light tapping.
It was several cars ahead before he spotted the movement, and he debated whether to go over – did he want to see? But he knew he had to.
At the back window was a small face, a boy, trapped, but alive. For the first time in days he felt something rise inside him, something positive, something desperate, and he started yanking and kicking at the crumpled door. It wasn’t going to give.
He looked around at the debris on the ground and found a good size rock with a sharp point. The boy saw him and moved back. Gavin smashed at the window, remembering to aim for the bottom corner as that was where they said it would most likely break in an emergency. When it popped it brought with it a gush of rotten air from inside. Gavin resisted moving back from it, instead reaching in to grab the boy who reached for him and pull him out. He stumbled back as he pulled him out and they both fell, the boy on top of him, but neither let go as though afraid to, clinging to the life they had found.
Eventually the boy pulled up and looked up at Gavin with delight, but also caution.
“I’m David,” he croaked, his throat dry from days trapped in the car.
“I’m Gavin,” Gavin replied, also through a croaky voice. His emotions had finally kicked in.