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  1. #1

    The Unnoticed Prepper

    I was encouraged on another forum to post my little story on other sites, so if no one objects I will do that, if that is not a good idea then let me know and I will delete it.


    It was Saturday nite. It was, Saturday nite. “Hey, Penny you’re not doing anything so could you take my shift?”, “Uh, Penny, I, ur, something came up, could you work for me on Saturday?”, “Oh, Penny, I met this guy and I forgot I was supposed to work so you on Saturday nite, uh?” Good ole’ reliable Penny.


    A girl has no one to rely on these days except herself.

    All these guys are out for only one thing.


    A sugar moma.

    Wash, dry and burp. Big or little that’s guys. They go from shiny small toys to shiny big toys. Their drawers, they should pick up their dirty clothes themselves.

    Well, the money always come in handy and I’ve been able to squirrel away a little bit of everything and keep adding to it. Aunt Bessie and Uncle Jim would be proud. No one thought they had much but we surprised the lawyer when they passed. Everything was passed to me before their deaths. Living trusts, stock annuities, even life insurance and funeral costs were all prepaid except for the opening and closing of graves. They went too soon.

    Yeah, I know everyone says that. But a million years would have been too soon.

    I was so scared when Moma and Daddy died, but Moma’s great aunt and her husband took me in without a blink of the eye. I can still hear them tell the social worker.

    “What do you mean, I gotta apply to raise my kin? You see this here paper, in case you can’t read it says that we are next of kin and we are to be legal guardians of any issue of Betty and Thomas Kempton. That means their kids. They only had Penny, more the pity but they had her and we are her legal guardians and that means she comes home with us. Now, unless you want to be charged with legally interfering with the guardianship of a minor without just cause. Here are letters of character, social workers’ assessment within our county and state and verification of legal residency of said Penelope Louise Kempton. Signed by her parents and witnessed by five, count ‘em, five witnesses with all of them being professional. A doctor, head of the board of education, lawyer, pastor, judge, police chief and bank manager. That covers spiritual, financial, health, legal and educational assessments outside our confidential lawyer-client association.”

    And just like that I went home with Aunt Bessie and Uncle Jim.

    No one knows that I’m the beneficiary of the revocable trust for the community park and woods, and the absentee landlord for the cannery, the pharmacy on 3rd St., the homeless shelter, the feedstore and hardware store. Uncle Jim, plain and simple to everyone, except no knew he had a couple of patents and some money from his grandfather that he used to build the town up. He always said “Like Granddad said, in the end you can only count on you, cause only you know what you need and how to get it.” The depressions, both 1929 and 2008 almost took everything away from this county but “Being prepared, is the Kempton’s motto, so I’m being prepared in plain sight. Aunt Bessie called it being a gray man, hiding in plain sight and Uncle Jim said we were guardians for our neck of the woods in case any thing happened. And something always happens.

    So here I am hiding in plain sight, keeping watch. Depression, natural disasters, disease and now stupid terrorists. I miss having someone to talk these things over with and plan for the future. Don’t regret my life but wish I could have some to help me now I’m on my own.

    Hey, who’s the new guy?

    “Excuse me, could you tell me where the realtor’s office is? Dabney’s Land Company? By the way, I’m Thompson. Eric Thompson.”

    “Hi, I’m Penny Kempton. You want to go down three blocks over towards the center of the block on the cross street to the right. Blue door, number 318.”

    “Thanks, those are precise directions, but a lot of people must ask you where things are, quick as you were to direct me.”

    “Naw, small town few places things could be.”

    “Well, thanks. See you around.”

    “See you.”

    “Hey Penny, who was that? He’s cute and that red hair is gorgeous!”

    “Melanie, not so loud. You want to embarrass you and me, both! He’s headed to the realtor’s office, you might see him around but give him a little bit of space . . .”

    “Oh Penny, guys like to be noticed, one of these days, you’ll be dating and will see.”

    One of these days, isn’t in the plan right now, too much to still prepare for, but it would be nice to have a partner like Aunt and Uncle, oh well. Time to close up the little market and pharmacy.

    That girl was cute but probably like everyone else, clueless on what really is going on in life. She probably doesn’t realize that things could collapse in a matter of hours and then no job, no electric, no water, no lot of things. Well, at least I can prepare myself for whatever is coming down the road.

    Standing in front of No. 318, Dabney Land Company. “Ah, here it is.” Entering the office and coming to the small corner desk. “Hi, I’m looking for a Louise Tipton.” The older dark haired lady behind the desk said, “That’s me. Are you Mr. Eric Thompson, here for our 4:30 meeting about the Johanssen place?” “Yes. I was notified that I was their closest relative and they had left their place to me with all the taxes and everything paid up, except for a thousand dollars of legal fees and realtor fees. I have a cashier’s check made out to Louise Tipton just like the letter said and my copy of the deed and other papers which are to be filed, just need a public notary.” Ms. Tipton stood and came around the desk to shake Eric’s hand. “Well, Mr. Thompson, you’re in luck as I am a public notary and the deed office is next door. We’ll take the check over there and I’ll pay all the fees and pay everything off then take your check. By five everything will be settled and you can start moving in and take care of the living trust. I’ll lead you out to the place on Kempton Lane and then you’re in charge. Here’s the set of keys.”

    Hmm, I wonder if that cute girl Penny lives out that way.

  2. #2
    Chapter 1

    Groceries, soda, extra preps, gas, paper, where’s the pap . . . That’s funny, it looks like someone is over at the old Johanssen’s place. No car, hope it’s not a squatter. Better get the .22 in case it’s a vagrant. No one’s been there since Aunt Bessie called hospice for Ms. Johanssen when they found out she had cancer after her husband had a heart attack. Come on Penny, pull up your big girl panties and check it out.

    Groceries in the pantry, pop in the fridge, airing out the bedroom . . . “What?! Hey quit pointing that gun at me!”

    “What are you doing in the old Johanssen’s place are you a, oh Mr. Thompson, how did you get into the house?”

    “Uh, it’s mine, I mean it’s a revocable trust my relatives left to me to caretake, you mine taking the gun and putting it down?”

    “Sorry, I’ve been keeping an eye on the place since Mrs. Johanssen left for hospice. Was expecting anyone, I mean I was expecting someone eventually just didn’t know someone was going to be here today and bums sometimes break into an empty house.”

    “No problem, I just got here today, couldn’t move in until after probate and paying legal fees. I guess you go by on your way home. Penny, isn’t it?”

    “Yeah, but I don’t go by, I live at the next place over on the other side of the road. The Johanssen’s had this side of the road and the Kempton’s lived on the other side.”

    They stand looking sheepishly at each other, Penny outside with the .22 lowered and Eric inside the bedroom looking out the window.

    “Do you want to come in, I mean do you want to come into the living room not the bedroom, I mean come in and get acquainted, . . . I’ll go open the front door.”

    “Yeah, I’ll come in and visit a while, let me put the .22 by the front door unloaded.”

    Eric is looking around to make sure there’s a place to sit and that he’s picked up anything embarrassing like trash or clothes he was sorting to put up.


    “Oh Penny, I’m sorry, I forgot to open the door and I . . “

    “It’s ok Eric. A lot of people would be frazzled to have a gun pointed at them especially while they’re making up a bed and putting things away.”

    “Yeah, I wasn’t expecting anyone to come by having just got here about 30 minutes ago. Hey want some pizza, it’s what I was eating for supper, there’s plenty or well at least a third left.”

    “Bella’s pizza, they have the best pizza in the county and you have the works! Yeah, I’d love to have some of the pizza, if you’re sure you don’t mind.”

    “No, I don’t mind, I was celebrating having a place to live, I, I mean, I was glad to have a home not celebrating because my relatives have died. Boy that sounds creepy, sorry.”

    “Don’t worry Eric, I know what you mean, it’s nice to have a place to call your own. Did you rent before?”

    “Yeah, I was going to college for agriculture and hoped to someday be able to farm but land is sky high and didn’t know when I would be able to practice what I learned. Hey, wait. You said the other side belonged to the Kemptons but you said your name was Kempton, does it not belong to your family?”

    “Well, yes and no, it’s a revocable trust which I’m over, a legacy from my Aunt Bessie and Uncle Jim, I mean my great aunt and uncle.”

    “Man, what a small world, that’s how this place is set up, who would have imagined your place and mine set up the same way.”

    “Actually, the Johanssens and my great aunt and uncle were good friends and they both set their places up the same many years ago to prevent the land from being turned into subdivisions and losing the agricultural aspect of this area. So many was selling out and then the food started getting high cause it had to be brought in instead of buying from the farmers.”

    “Wow, Penny, it looks like great minds think alike. What is being grown across the road, if you don’t mind my asking. Looks like a lot of trees and shrubs as well as row crops, well not exactly row crops but crops.”

    “Eric the trees are fruit, nut, syrup and the shrubs are fruiting shrubs with lower fruiting vegetation. I do a lot of canning, food is expensive and I like to eat and, well I like to do things the old fashion way, grow my own so I know what goes in it.”

    “You sound like my kind of girl, I mean. . . I just keep putting my foot in my mouth don’t I. I meant to say that I like the old fashioned way, not traditional as that’s come to mean row crops and a lot of fertilizers and pesticides and herbicides. I studied sustainable agricultural practices in college and will be putting a lot into practice here on the farm.”

    “Eric, I get you. We’re like-minded people it sounds like. Straight food to eat, not scientific names on the label. Maybe, we can compare notes and learn from each other.”

    “I’d like that Penny, oh you don’t mind my calling you Penny, do you? It just seemed right to call you by your first name.”

    “No Eric, it’s fine, in fact since we’re so like-minded it just seems natural. By the way, could I have some water to go with this pizza.”

    “Oh, oh I’m sorry, I wasn’t even thinking. Here’s a bottle of water from the fridge. You must think I have no social skills at all!”

    “No, I’d say you’re still frazzled from having a gun point at you in your new home. Thanks. It’s been interesting and I think I will enjoy having a kindred spirit around to compare notes with. Welcome to the neighborhood. You might want to paint your name on the mailbox so people know someone is living here now so you won’t be facing anymore weapons as people check on the place.”

    “Yeah, yeah I will, thanks for the tip.”

    “Well, I better go, I have some things in my car cooler I need to get in the house and in the fridge before I do something with it for meals. It’s been nice, Eric and I don’t think that you’re totally without social skills. Bye.”

    “Bye, Penny, come back anytime but maybe leave the gun at home, unless you really think you need it.”

    “I might bring it back, as there are both 2 and 4 legged varmints but I don’t plan on pointing it at you again Eric. See ya.”

    Eric watching Penny leave has a big silly grin on his face thinks to himself. If only she wasn’t a sheeple, maybe I can feel her out about winter storage. Man, I have to watch what I think and say as I really would like to touch her face, hold her hand and dance with her under the moonlight. Boy, I still sound like a hopeless romantic. I guess the city didn’t beat that out of me.

    Penny on getting home goes in the house then comes right back out after putting the gun up. Almost forgot to get the groceries, I need to keep my mind on what I’m doing, but with his auburn hair, nice seat and boyish grin, he sure is easy on the eyes. Wish I had a chance with him but like all the guys I probably look like someone’s kid sister and not someone to go out with. Wish a guy like him would see me for the woman I am.

  3. #3
    Chapter 2

    Thursday morning, a week after Eric Thompson came to town, he was checking out the library when he ran into Penny. “Hey Penny, you work at the library, too?”

    “Hey Eric, yeah, I work a couple of part-time jobs for the pay and the benefits.”

    “I hear you, I used to work 4 or 5 part-time jobs for money and benefits.”

    “Oh, what kind of jobs?”

    “Monday nite, pizza place, Tuesday nite, burger place, Wednesday nite, fish and shrimp, Thursday nite, Italian food and Friday nite, the steak house,” Eric ticked off on his finger.

    “What about the weekend?”, Penny laughingly asked.

    “Ah, the plume de resitance, junk food and paper writing and soda and studying on what I was having trouble in that week and me and my buddies quizzing each other.”

    “Sounds like you had your life planned out, how did you manage time to date? Oh, I didn’t mean to sound nosy or to pry about your love life, I mean about dating, oh now you think I don’t have any social skills,” Penny laughed covering her eyes.

    Eric laughing with her, reassured Penny that he wasn’t offended. “I often put my foot in my mouth by speaking what was on my mind and not realizing how things could be taken but most people realize I’m harmless.”

    “Well, now that I’ve matched you in embarrassment, what are you looking for at the library?”

    “You know already I went to college for agriculture but so much as the public universities and colleges are funded by corporations and state government so knowledge is somewhat funded to the view of corporations. I’m after older knowledge before the Green Revolution. Which by the way was not beneficial to the land. It was the Green Revolution because of all the fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and other practices which were conducive to massive plantings of one variety while killing off everything else. The land is becoming less fertilized because the natural cycles of the land are interrupted. Eutrophication or the killing off of life in water bodies by depletion of oxygen often leaving a toxic environment even in ponds which animals drink from as well as dead areas off places like the Gulf of Mexico where the dead area is the size of Rhode Island and the fishing hatcheries and fishing areas are gone leading to less food and less healthy environments for all life . . . “ Eric stutters to a stop at Penny’s surprised face. Red faced he apologizes, “I’m sorry, I’m sorta passionate about sustainability and current modern practices which are harmful to so many species on so many such as fungi in the soil or that so many people don’t see the beauty in diversification and that a weed is only a plant which someone hasn’t found their usage or function of or how there’s food all around but people only see it if it comes prepackaged or . . . I’m doing it again, aren’t I? Running off at the mouth without taking a breath, blowing up and giving both barrels.”

    “No, no. Eric it’s wonderful to see someone so passionate about life, about something that matters instead which star is doing what in Hollywood. I didn’t realize about utra, eutri, oostrific whatever it is that you are talking about. I’d love to know more, if you could write out the word so I could read up on it.”

    “Penny, I’ll go you one better. I have a bunch of books, pamphlets, at my place, if you want to come over when you get off I’ll drag them out and show you over some home-made tacos I was making for lunch. I’ll get the library books I was coming after and head on back to start and when you get off, we eat and talk. That is if you want to.”

    “Best offer I’ve had all week and I’d love to help fix tacos, if you don’t mind, I’ve got some home-made salsa to go with chips to go with the tacos if you don’t mind my bring it over and I can leave anytime so I can help you get food ready so we can discuss about the toxicity of local ponds, oceans and seas.”

    “Great! It’s a date, I mean a meeting, uh . . .”

    “It’s ok Eric, we can call it a friendly discussion among friends. Meet you in about an hour at your place?”

    “Sounds good. I’ll go ahead and leave in about 30 minutes to get the salsa and chips and meet you at your place.”

    “I’ll get the books I came for then meet you in an hour, we can have some sun tea I left to brew this morning. I have them reserved and I want to check the shelves they came from to see if there are some others I might want to read. See you soon.”

    Both Eric and Penny hurry to their tasks with big smiles and eager steps.

    Eric has the meat cooking on the stove and tea cooling in an iced picture, when Penny shows up with chips and a jar each of home canned green and of red salsa.

    “Come on in everything is just about ready and I’ve got the pamphlets and books ready to look at.”

    “Eric, this looks like you’ve done some in-depth research. Research on Gulf of Mexico, in farm ponds, types of algae in algae blooms both red and blue algae. Why don’t more people know about this?”

    “Penny, there’s so many things which have affected our lives and damaged the environment. People have adopted practices without checking what the long term effects would be and some even knew but did things which would have bad results.”
    Penny and Eric spend the next few hours discussing, reading and sharing ideas on what is occurring in the environment, in their local communities and what can be done short and long term to minimize the results of uninformed decisions over the past several decades. How they ended their evening is between them but they both definitely enjoyed it.

    Chapter 3

    Tuesday morning at the pharmacy, Penny is checking the dates and stock of medicine on hand. She has a pharmacy tech certification and is working on pharmacist as she can with the expectation of getting it in about 18 months. Melanie, is still clueless on what all Penny does and just thinks that Penny can’t work at a job for more than a few hours which is why she has so many part-time jobs. Penny is still funneling money back into community preps with almost no one the wiser. There are some friends and protégées of her aunt and uncle but they are involved with their own community support and preps. She has more help than she actually knows but they are in the background and working on a bigger plan which has been in place many, many years.

    We need to order some more sulfa drugs and more fish antibiotics as a backup. Need to add more alcohol, peroxide and gauge. About time to check on tetanus medicine, diabetic medicine and the pricks and strips. Everything else looks to be good. Need some more Everclear for the tinctures and yada, yadas for the herbals. I think I’d like to add another gross of bottles for making the herbals also with the cork plugs.

    “Hey Penny!”, starts Melanie, “I have some pla . . .”, when she is interrupted by Penny.

    “Melanie, I have some things planned for the next 5 or 6 weeks at least and I’m not able to cover on Saturday night. I know you’re well able to do the close-up so I don’t have to worry about anything. I will be offline doing some things so you can text me if something comes up but I’m not sure when I will read the text. I’m sure you understand.”

    Melanie, just stands and stares at Penny since the four years she’s been working at the pharmacy and little market Penny has always been available to work Saturday night.

    Eric comes strolling in and distracts Melanie who starts preening and primping to get his attention. He walks right by her as if he doesn’t notice her and goes straight to Penny. “Hey Penny, I got some more books dug out and thought we might go over biodynamics versus organic agricultural production and see which ones are applicable on the Johanssen’s place and which if any are being done at your place on Saturday night, is that good with you?”

    With a big grin, Penny responds while Melanie looks at her as if she has two heads, “Eric! That would be great, I’d like to see what the differences are and how I can increase the productivity while staggering out the crops more and keeping them growing longer during the year.”

    “Great right back at ‘cha as I’d like to set up the topics for the next three months if you feel like it over lunch today if you feel like it. Some of the information I need to schedule at the state library to have the older texts ready for loan at the times we are looking at those production practices. And the shortcuts you mentioned on cross-referencing the various crops with the practices which would work best with them is working out really good.”

    “Wait, wait, wait! Penny, you said you had some things to do and that’s why you couldn’t work my shift Saturday night because of that. You can’t go to Eric’s to talk about farming if you have something set up where you can’t cover my shift,” Melanie griped upset Penny refused to work her shift.

    “Excuse me, miss, I’m not sure if we’ve really met but Penny and I will be talking agriculture Saturday night and every Saturday night for the next three months at least among other topics which we both seem to find interesting. She assured me that she could do it without a problem since she has never been scheduled for Saturday night and only works as a favor to others on the weekend. Since she kindly agreed to a standing engagement for the next three months, I’m very sure that she can come to my place and only if she tells me she can’t come will I not expect her. I’m not being rude but we’ve put quite a bit of thought into these get-togethers. I’m sure you understand since this is something Penny and I both seem to enjoy and to want.”

    “I, I, I didn’t mean she couldn’t go, just SHE NEVER HAS AND I ALREADY HAVE PLANS AND DON’T KNOW WHO ELSE TO CALL!!!”

    “Well Melanie, I guess you just have to cancel your plans as Saturday night has always been your shift since you were hired and it still is. As you heard Eric, he and I have a standing engagement for weekly Saturday night discussions and dinner. Now Eric, was there something else you were needing as I know you had some plans to get some animals lined up to start bringing to the farm to increase the biodiversity.”

    ”Yeah, that’s why I’m here. You mentioned the vet medicine as well as human medicine was kept at the pharmacy in different rooms and shelves. I have a list of things I’d like to get stocked up on such as some vaccines for goats, Newcastle’s’ vaccine for chickens, some topical solutions for chaffing for milking cows as well as cleansing solutions. Here are the prescriptions from the vet and also I need some different sized needles for administering the doses, the vet has those listed as well.”

    “Sure Eric, give me about 15 minutes to gather everything up and an insulated foam carrier for the items which need to be kept cool. There’s a deposit on it or you can just buy it to have on the farm. Whatever you prefer.”

    “Take your time Penny, I’ll just look around and see what I might need for at the farm for myself also so my nsaids and other items are all up to date and on hand for the human side.”

    While Penny is in the back filling the vet recommended supplies Melanie approaches Eric, red-faced and apologetic. “I’m sorry for coming across as a jerk, but in four years Penny has never had anything on Saturday night and has always seemed happy to cover my shift. I didn’t mean anything by what I said, it’s just I didn’t expect Penny to ever say no. I’m sorry and I’m really happy she has someone to do something with on Saturday night. I hope you both have a really, really good time.”

    Eric, nods and then Penny comes back in the room.

    “Penny, I’m sorry I acted like I did, it’s just you never are busy on Saturday and I was shocked ‘cause it was so unexpected. I hope you and Eric have a good time. I just need to make sure all my plans are for Friday night which is my night off.”

    “Apology accepted and if for some reason I’m not able to meet with Eric because he had something come up I may or may not be able to cover for you. But, no promises”

    “Eric, here’s the meds and needles. That’s $32.73.”

    “Here’s $35 and the $2.27 and supplies make us even. See you later at Bella’s for lunch?”

    “Sounds great, Eric. I’ll work up an appetite for their works pizza. Dutch treat?”

    “Dutch treat, that’s lets us both take some for an afternoon snack. What time do we meet there?”

    “My lunch is 1 to 2, so see you at 1:05?”

    “1:05, it’s a date, Bye.”

    “I’ll call Bella’s at 12:45 so our pizza will be hot and ready with some cold lemonade.”

    “I’ll bring my appetite!” as Eric leaves with a big grin.
    Last edited by crice118; 10-09-2017 at 05:32 PM. Reason: chap 3 didn't get posted right

  4. #4
    Chapter 4
    Two weeks later on a Saturday morning at the community park which Penny is secretly overseer for the community. The park/woodlands and pathways are bursting out with new foliage after some soaking rains which swell the continuing fruit and vegetables running riot throughout the five acres.

    “Penny, this is amazing! All these plants just growing wild and food all over the place.:
    “Eric,” laughs Penny with a mischievous smile, “it’s not growing wild, it’s guerilla gardening. Most people wouldn’t recognize that all these plants except for a few exceptions are edible in some form or fashion. People come through here and grab a sprout, fruit with seed, or at times come when we thin some of the rhizomes and give them away. We never take more than 15% to 20% and only do it at times that it will stimulate the growth of the plants. We plan on introducing some controlled exotics from other countries which have similar temperature ranges to increase biodiversity and allow more food to be grown locally which others may not realize is food.”

    “Penny, you, you almost sound like . . . “

    “Like what, Eric.”

    “Penny, are you a, a prepper?”

    “Uh, just because a person wants to make sure that food continues in an area doesn’t mean they’re a prepper. I just think you should always make sure that you are able to enjoy a variety of food over an extended period of time in a biodiverse ecosystem.” as Penny turns away.

    “You are a prepper!”

    Penny walks a little away with her arms crossed and shoulders hunched down in on herself. “Eric, don’t laugh at me, I just like being prepared! Boyscouts are prepared!”

    “Penny, don’t be mad at me, I’m not laughing at you!”, laughing loud and long. Pulling her into his arms, Eric continues, “Penny, Penny.” Penny pulls out of his arms and starts to stalk away but Eric pulls her back into his arms with her back to him. “Penny, I was laughing at me. I’ve been trying to figure a way of talking to you about prepping. I’ve come to care a lot about you and it would kill me if anything happens and you weren’t prepared for it if I was delayed coming to you.”

    Eric starts singing off-key softly to Penny to an old soft drink ad. “I’m a prepper, you’re a prepper, don’t you want to be a pair of preppers, too,” ending on a high note.

    Turning Penny in his arms and looking tenderly down at her, “Penny, I’ve enjoyed spending time with you. I wake up thinking of you and go to bed thinking of you. You put a smile on my face and I never want it to go away. I’m a little old fashioned and don’t say things like this to anyone but I’d like see where leads, and I’m hoping this leads to forever. I know I can be overbearing at times when I get on my hobby horse but my family has always taken an attitude of being prepared cause you don’t know what tomorrow will bring. I only know that I hope my tomorrows always bring you.”

    Penny with tears running down her face, softly whispers, “ I never thought I would have these kinds of feeling for someone. I thought maybe there was no one who could be interested in me because I am so full of pent-up emotions about being prepared, watching out for my community, looking towards the future, but it’s been a lonely future I was looking at.”

    Eric pulling back to look at Penny’s face laughs and says, “Well, don’t keep me in suspense, is your future now not so lonely? Can you see a silly red head in your future walking down the path with you?” as he hands her a handkerchief after wiping her eyes so she can blow her nose.

    “Great, now I look like a red nosed clown and my face is all splotchy and funny looking! And yes I see two on that path and one has auburn hair and a beautiful smile.”

    Singing softly, Eric slowly bends down to kiss Penny. “Funny face, I love you, funny face, I need you . . .”

    A little while later, Eric and Penny walking together with Penny being held close to Eric’s side.

    “You know Eric, it is almost strange, it seems like we are too much alike almost uncanny, we’re both into prepping from different aspects. What you lack I have knowledge in and what I lack, you have knowledge in. It’s like we both halves of a whole. It’s almost like someone had planned us and out paths out.”

    Turning to Eric, “You don’t think your relatives and mine planned this, do you? Everything their farm grows is complimentary to what my great aunt and uncle’s farm grows. Compliments but isn’t redundant. It’s like us, two parts of a whole. We even like the same old songs!”

    “You know it is strange, Penny but I feel the same way, but if someone planned it or not. I’m glad it is. Planned or not, I don’t want to think of a future without you, whether anything happens in our lifetime or not. Knowing you and, yes, loving you makes the future and prepping for the future have more meaning.” And lowering his head, he tenderly embraces Penny and kisses her long and deeply as she wraps her arms around his neck.

    But in another part of the country, things are not sweet and things are not innocent. And the couple’s prepping and the plans of the powers that be that put Penny and Eric on the path to prepping with the hope that they would be together, will be tested and will be tried. And it will take the community, and others who are a part of the plans and have been working behind the scenes like Penny.
    Last edited by crice118; 10-08-2017 at 06:51 PM.

  5. #5
    Chapter 5
    Comparing notes at the feedstore, Eric and Penny are trying to determine which crops are complimentary or companion crops to what is currently planted at the Kempton place as opposed to what is planted at the Johanssen place. Eric is looking to plant feed crops for geese, Buff Orphington chickens, Red Bourbon turkeys, Pekin ducks, Muscovey ducks and Indian runner ducks, Morgan horses, standard donkeys, Gurnsey and Jersey cows, Nubian and Alpine goats, Iceland sheep and Hampshire pigs. Cheeses from the milk from cows. Donkeys, goats, and sheep would be mixed in different cheeses, yogurts, milk products and even kefir from grains as an alternative.

    “But Eric why so many and why these? Are you about so many different ones? And donkey milk? Do you really plan on drinking donkey milk?”

    “No, Penny I don’t plan on drinking donkey milk but do plan on making some soaps from it. Soap is a specially item which many people buy. The different animals give different manures, hot and cold which also provide different concentrations of nutrients. Morgan horses are hard workers as well as donkeys but donkeys also work as guard animals. Llamas are also used as guard animals but they have been known to force themselves onto other animals and the idea is to raise the animals in a natural way with little trauma, I want to stay away from aggressive animals, plus they can also spit like camels. Having a variety of animals and of the grains and forage needed to feed them keeps a variety of food stock for animals through the warm season and cool seasons grass cycles. Multiple types of animals, provide multiple resources from food to fiber to work animals. The different laying animals allow for some to come in and go out in molt or a time of non-laying while they build back up the calcium in their systems, provide different types of meats and work together in a natural way on the farm. You never find just one type of animal by itself in the wild and this farm is to mimic nature.”

    “I have so much to learn to see how all this work together, animals, plants, different uses.”

    “But Penny, you have so much knowledge on how to keep things going in a crisis, solar, water, basic skills, just simple survival skills in case of a disaster or catastrophe. All the knowledge about farms is useless if the people running the place can’t stay healthy or even alive.”

    “I just hope we have time to get these things setup. I don’t like the news coming out of the northern part of Africa and the Middle East.”

    “What have you been hearing? I’m always listening to webinars on agricultural practices. I’m not even sure I know what is actually going on. I don’t have a TV as I’m always on my laptop and for an older house it was surprisingly easy to get it set up for the internet. I guess, because it once had a ham radio and antenna and they were able to use it to get better cell and satellite internet. The TV only has biased news as far as I can tell.”

    “I agree with you Eric, but if nothing else check the news online, there are sites to get what is going on in the world.”

    “Well, Miss Penny, I got your seed you always request. Organic, spring and fall red and white wheat, rye, millet, grain and sweet sorghum, flaxseed, barley, hulless and hulled oats including red oats, quinoa, spelt and teff. And your young friend, has he made up his mind what seed he’s looking for. He does know we only sell non-gmo seed, right.”

    “Yes, Mr. Richards, I think he’s settled on some of the forages in both cool and warm season grasses, including alfalfa, Timothy, Kentucky bluegrass, fescue along with what is currently growing on the Johanssen’s place being the right mix for poultry and ruminants.”

    “Now, young man don’t forget to get some nutrient and salt mix, if you getting goats, they need selenium but that can be bad for sheep. I found offering it all in different containers lets the animals graze what they need, but you watch to make sure they only eating out of their species food boxes. I’d hate for you to get some sick animals cause I didn’t speak up.”

    “Thank you Mr. Richards. We appreciate your concern and help. Penny said I couldn’t go wrong by going to you and that you’d never steer me wrong.”

    “And did she mention I’m the only feed stock place in the county? But she’s right I value my customers too much to not do right by them. I also do blends and mixes of feed for animals for each season that works out pretty good for the famers here, but it can be expensive, If you buy by the ton of each and mix yourself in the ratios, it’s a lot cheaper but make sure you got one or two good farm cats cause grain’ll draw rodents.”

    “I never thought of that, Penny do you have any cats? I need to get one from some place.”

    “There’s always been a family of cats between both places. I have the vet give them shots each year but they are outside cats, always staying out of sight but keeping the rodents down along with the barn owls.”

    “I never seen any cats of owls, are you sure?”

    “Yeah, remember the owls hunt at night while the cats are still a little leery of you since you probably haven’t left any milk or food out, but when you start milking, if you leave some morning milk out for them then they’ll get friendly.”

    “Mr. Richards, Eric also needs some sweet mix for the animals and if Mr. Barrett’s nephews are looking for more work, he might need some good hay hands at the right times.”

    Whispering to Eric, Penny explains, “The Barrett twins stay the summer with their uncle as their mom works extra during the summer to pay winter bills since her husband, Johnny, Mr. Barrett’s brother died over in the Middle East. They hard workers and will do you right plus know what and when to do things in this county based on the weather. Mr. Barrett is a strong believer in following the Farmer’s Almanac and it almost always works out.”

    “Can’t say I blame him, I’ve found the old ways work because there was a lot of proof in them over the many years. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it and the almanac ain’t broke.”

    “Mr. Thompson, I think you are fitting in here right nice.”

    “Why thank you Miss Kempton, is it nice enough to get a kiss?”

    “Don’t know about that but I can give you a kiss for trying and then an extra one as an incentive to keep fitting in.”

    “Why Miss Kempton, I do like how you think? I do believe I will take you up on your offer.”

    Eric kisses Penny while Mr. Richards looks on with a big grin and his comment of, “Now ain’t that nice, young people in love.”
    Last edited by crice118; 10-08-2017 at 06:52 PM.

  6. #6
    Chapter 6
    A field at Penny's, down the road from an old root cellar on the Johanssen's. “See Penny, the color of the soil how it holds together when you squeeze it in your hand the smell of it. The deep earthy color and smell and how it holds together but crumbles easily shows this is some quality soil for diverse organisms and is fertile. The worms in it show that the organic matter is being broken up into what is called worm casting or worm poo. It is highly nutritious for plants can easily take up the nutrients. You some of the best soil I’ve ever seen.”

    “Aunt Bessie and Uncle Jim always said never take out unless you’re going to put back in. We’ve always practiced rotation with a fallow year, adequate irrigation for the heavy water users by using irrigation ditches and slow deep watering with green manure crops during the offseason. They never were into the chemical fertilizers. I can hear Aunt Bessie now ‘I’m sure if the good Lord was gardening He’d never put chemical over all His food, so I don’t see a reason for me to do it. He made it and I never seen a bag of cow manure just sitting on the ground. All that marketing is just a gimmick, I’ll just have the cows drop it and let the chickens spread it around where it’s needed.’ I miss them but wouldn’t want them back here for anything, wouldn’t pull anyone out of Heaven back into this old mess.”

    “You know, that’s something else about you. So many people aren’t thankful and don’t thank God. You take it as part of your day the God is the one directing you if you’ll listen. That’s why I think we fit so well together, I think God directed your aunt and uncle and my relatives the Johanssens to set their places up like they did and trained and pointed us in the direction to carry on the plan God gave them. I am thankful I listened to my parents even though they were older, I was a late in life baby. My older brother is 25 years older than me. My parents came from the Netherlands and were actually children during World War II but old enough to be part of the Dutch Resistance. They said many times to me, ‘Watch for deception, watch for the real face underneath, watch so you’re not caught off guard. Always watch for the real person.’ Hey, that just reminded me of something, when we get finished getting these soil samples and looking over the fields, my parents told me if I ever came here to look carefully in the root cellar, just don’t take things at face value.”

    “Ok, just three more fields and then we’ll put these in the truck then we can check it out after we get your soil samples. On to the next field, I’ve got this sample mixed from five different sites and levels from 1 to 12 inches.”

    A couple of hours later, “Well, Penny that’s the last soil sample over here. Do you want to go look at the old root cellar? I don’t think there’s much in there but it is really snug as it is set into areas with warmer and dry and warmer and damp and cool dry and cool damp. The gravel lets some moisture remain in the wet rooms to have higher humidity while the concrete let’s you have a layer of sawdust or shavings to soak up any moisture to keep it dryer. You have to construct it just right for it to maintain the humidity and heat you want without electricity to accomplish it.”

    “Wow, I was never down here as my aunt and uncle considered fruit cellars and root cellars to be private to the family which had them they separated out into two cellars cause the fruit could make the vegetables ripen quicker and decay faster from being over-ripe.”

    “That’s a good idea if a family is able to have two separate ones but if not the setup like my relatives did is really good, also. You know it’s like they were seeing which way worked better. Between both the farms it was like one big operation testing to see what did best. Do you think they were actively doing that or even if maybe they originally set it up like that.”

    “Yeah, it is strange what is done on one farm is done on the other but in a different way. Oh look there’s the entrance to the root cellar. Have you already been in there very much? You been here what 4 or 5 months?”

    “Just went into it a couple of times to see what was there and what might need to be done before using it and making sure it was usable as a storm cellar.”

    “Eric, look at these oil lamps set in recesses in the walls it makes it safer so they don’t get bumped and look at the ventilation paths so the gases all go towards the vent in the corner. They put some thought into this. The room is what 18 feet by 20 feet with shelving of oak timbers, and they look like they’ve been treated to last forever.”

    Penny notices Eric is looking at all the corners and edges closely. “What are you looking for Eric?” Laughingly, Penny adds, “You look like you’re looking for a secret door.”

    “You know Penny, I think that is exactly what I am looking for. I remember my Dad on the phone one time talking to the Johanssens and he was saying you can never have it too big remember you want to hide in plain sight. I asked him what he meant, I was about five or six at the time. He said you must always have a hiding place, that was the only way to make sure you could always be safe and if you were very old or very young you needed a place you could move in. I asked how big for young or old and he said at least as big as our great room and that was 36 feet by 24 feet. So yes, I am looking for a secret door and . . . I think . . . I . . . found . . . IT!” as Eric stumbled back from a section of the back corner of the cellar which had opened up moving a corner shelving unit holding oil for the lamps.

    Penny and Eric just stared into the dark into a larger room before looking at each other dumbfounded, then a slow grin started on both faces before reaching for their flashlights.
    Last edited by crice118; 10-08-2017 at 06:53 PM.

  7. #7
    Chapter 7
    “Eric, look at all this stuff, guns and ammo sealed in plastic and properly oiled to keep in good shape, plenty of desiccant around, charts and maps of the area, power lines to essential services water, sewer, gas, and pipes to and from them and where redundant critical parts are located and who can fix them and what tools are where to do the job.”

    “Penny, this is a ham radio setup and over here a big safe and a gun safe, it says it’s has the high power rifles and the room behind it has power and fuses for . . . it says claymores and anti-personal weapons, something called Bouncin’ Betties.”

    “Eric, this says that it is emergency procedures based on the emergency and this folder has evacuation routes and safe houses, and over here safe places around the county for groups from 5 to 20 people.”

    “Penny, come here.”

    “What is it Eric? Oh, my, Eric those are my great aunt and uncle and the Johanssen’s photos.”

    “And Penny, these are my parents. Penny, all these people were involved in the Dutch Resistance during World War II. Wait, listen to this, Eric if you have found this call Louise Tipton at Dabney Realtors, she can answer your questions, but for now know that you must keep this secret until you know more. You should have formed a friendship with Penny Kempton and she is the only one you can tell. Contact Ms. Tipton as soon as you can after you read this but it is not an emergency only the one who can answer your questions on what this is. Know hard times will come, they always do. This is our way of watching out for the future of our beloved community and beloved country.”

    “Eric, it looks like they set up a resistance cell, but resistance against what and who?”

    “The only way to know is to ask Ms. Tipton, I’m calling and you’re talking. Have her come here to explain things, I don’t want to wait overnite to get answers so have here come here as soon as you can, if that is alright with you.”

    Eric rubs his face with his hands, “I don’t think I would even be able to sleep if we don’t get answers today. Ms. Tipton, Eric Thompson. I found something that maybe you might be able to explain, I’d like you to come out here and explain what Penny Kempton and I have found. As soon as possible, ok that sounds good. We’ll see you in 45 minutes to an hour. Yes, we will. Bye. Penny, she’s picking up some KFC and stuff and will be out here in about an hour. We can have the iced tea in the fridge but I think we need to make some notes on questions to ask her before she gets here.”

    Eric and Penny are writing rapidly and looking at as much as they can until they hear a car passing and blowing it’s horn. They close the door and rapidly head for Eric’s home where Ms. Tipton is getting out of her vehicle with food bags. Louise, I’ll get the door.”

    “Thanks, Penny. I know you both are dying of curiosity. Let’s get drinks and plates, AFTER you both wash up, I refuse to eat looking at those dirty hands.”

    “Yes ma’am, Eric and I were overcome with curiosity.”

    Eric and Penny come back into the kitchen where everything is open and ready for everyone to eat with drinks already poured. Everyone fills their plates and Louise starts her tale.

    “It’s really very simple, I’m sure that you realize that all the photos you probably saw were all part of the Dutch resistance and the network which is set up here is based on their experiences and as a precaution that they and their loved ones would never be trapped in a situation like that again. They, the original resistance members along with Jim Kempton, an American pilot who ended up there after his plane was shot down worked together to keep their little area an active resistance cell against the Nazis. Your Aunt Bessie is actually Dutch but became an American when she married Jim Kempton and came to America, her entire family was killed but he kept her safe. When they left for America, there was so much devastation that Jim promised to find a place and all that wanted to would come over and help to set up a new community. Many stayed in the Netherlands but some came and in coming they promised that they would always remain vigilant and prepare against any new threats to their friends, community, country and especially their loved ones. They also swore, that they would prepare each new generation to be prepared and watchful as memories fade and generations which did not experience the horror of madmen could not comprehend them. They made the commitment to make preparedness and watchfulness an integral part of everyday life so threats would never take their friends and loved ones away again. For the past three years, the network has been watching a new and insidious evil raise its head and they fear that it is getting ready to strike at the heart of America, at core values and beliefs. They believe an economic and terrorist war is at the door and we need to be ready to stand and possibly to stand alone. Hopefully, we can be a guiding light and help surrounding communities and beyond repel the attacks and provide for Americans so they can fight for liberty again.”

    “Ms. Tipton, I find it hard to believe . . . “

    “Eric, Louise is my godmother, if she says it, I believe it, it’s hard but I do believe it.”

    “I didn’t say I didn’t believe, just that it is hard, but I am relieved that people have been doing something and not just sitting around while things go from bad to worse. And I am honored that you and others would let me and Penny in on this. Something tells me we were considered part of the new generation as well as loved ones and I am very thankful to be part of this ‘network’.”

    Penny reaching over grabs his hand tightly and looks him square in the eye. “Eric, I feel the same way and thank you for talking as ‘we’ instead of just you.” Looking at her godmother, what more do we need to know and need to do.”

    “Penny, Eric. Evil is coming and we are preparing. It is time for you to understand the plan and meet the rest of the network.”

  8. #8
    I like it! only finished chapter 1...
    will be back!

  9. #9
    I added chapter 3 in twice but it didn't show up as a separate post so added it at the end of chapter two if you missed it before I got it to stay saved

    Sorry for the delay, this has been a hard chapter to write. Some who may read this may not agree, some may agree too much and think I didn't go far enough. These are my opinions based on my life and experiences, this is not against anyone just my perceptions, this is my reality and I stating things this way because of how my life has gone. If I offend someone, I do not mean to, I just want people to wake up. We are not "owed anything", unless we are willing to work for some things we may not have the right to have some things and that can mean freedom. I do not expect to really have anything from social security, it was setup as a political Ponzi scheme and my children and grandchildren cannot maintain that fiction of "social" security, they must have individual and family security to the level they are willing to put into it. If a big screen TV is more important than planting some fruit trees then that is a decision which will affect them down the road. I have to be responsible for me, a nanny gubiment keeps me from my potential and I am not letting anyone except myself keep me from my potential. And if I can get me out of my way then I can have my security for my and my children's future. I would appreciate feedback and opinions for honest discussion on this chapter, whether you agree or disagree so we can know each other cause I'm hoping others have better answers than I have.

    Chapter 8
    “Penny, my dear, you are not alone in this fight. Yes, I know that you have Eric with you now and you look very sweet together.”

    Penny could feel her face heating up as if she had a light sunburn as she ducked her head down in shyness at her feelings being so apparent. Eric reaching for her hand, intertwined his fingers and hers. “Our feelings are new, young and private. If Penny doesn’t talk about them to anyone, it’s because we are still exploring the wonder of it. My parents had a wonderful marriage and you could tell they were made for each other and I feel the same thing with Penny. One day, when we’re ready, I hope we will be together and have a marriage such as my parents had.”

    “I feel the same way, my feelings are so new and fragile, I don’t want to share them yet. Like a beautiful wild rose, they are growing, covering the ugliness of loneliness, sorry and anxiety with companionship, gratitude and confidence. It’s something like my love for my savior, not quite but something along that path. When it is fully bloomed, then I’ll want to shout it from the hills but now I’m enjoying it and learning how to live with it. Where I end and Eric begins and where he ends and I begins in the partnership we are building.”.

    “Exactly, Ms. Tipton,”
    “Eric call me Louise, I am family in spirit, if not in flesh.”
    “Louise, then, Penny and I are learning to be one so at the right time, we will be one, but I see part of my job as protecting Penny from and preparing her for dark times, cause I think they are coming.”

    “Eric, Penny, you are right in so many ways. Love starts out young and beautiful and if given time and patience turns into something grand. That love can hold you and uplift you in bad times and help refresh you and teach you in good times. Dark days are indeed ahead. So as you eat, I will explain the past, present and future of this community and others.”

    "The people who came here from the Dutch Resistance realized that a little forgetting and a little as they say “sleeping and folding of the hands” cause people to gloss over evil because most people are not evil. They may be bad and break laws but most people are not evil and have little desire to hurt others. Greed, desire, want are extremes of wanting more of what satisfies and makes people comfortable. Enough to eat for someone who has known hunger may make them more willing to be dishonest so they never have to face that hunger again. Theft because wanting things which make people warm, safe and comfortable is an extreme. Bullying is an extreme because for some reason a person is uncomfortable in society or insecure of does not feel safe. I personally, and our community think that if a support system is setup for people to help them feel safe, have confidence and hope for a future and they are guided into fruitful occupations and friendships then there would be less crime. This society has failed so many and so many children, over the years have been taught to be selfish instead of selfless and never been led to develop their potential as you two have.” Louise sighs and looks down, “If we don’t guide people in right, evil will guide them to do wrong things.” Looking the couple in the eye, Louise continued, “The resistance fighters vowed it would not happen here. They would not forget, too many died because we had become complacent and we waited too late to recognize evil will never be satisfied nor will it stop trying to harm. We built a purposeful community based on helping others, growing our potential and being prepared for anything that we could. Our young people were taught to hide in plain sight and people went out into other communities around the country to help set up other communities. Self-sufficient, sustainable, reliable, able to meet crises head-on, a can-do mentality. It was recognized that in having others take care of you, you lose your ability to care for yourself, your rights are limited to what others say you can have and in the end, intentionally or not, you become a slave to another and are no longer free.”

    Stopping for another bite and drink, Louise continues, “Now for the crux of the matter. There are terrorist cells which are embedded within our country, they are here for a purpose as they have been in other countries. Many of our communities have had their members become preppers and join organizations. They are teaching others of our country that they can and should defend themselves, be responsible for their own safety, provide for their future in the way of food, warmth, shelter and other needs such as clothes, fertile land and animals to obtain these things. Some work full time at it and some work jobs to help finance their endeavors. These terrorist cells are trying to brand preppers as crazy, selfish even evil and that they are trying to take America down. People are being brainwashed that the government is right as long as they promise to take care of people, but that way leads to destruction as there can never be enough people or things to take care of everyone. The only way to do that is to diminish the number of people who needs to be taken care of. When destruction comes whether man-made or natural, many will die because they don’t know how to live. They can’t think themselves out of a box and they will suffer . . . and the innocent will suffer with them. The different communities will take care of their own but it is not feasible to send our all to help others who refused to help themselves. If that was to be done, then everyone would perish. We would send some but people who have worked, honestly, for their self-sufficiency should never have their hard work taken away. The idea of taking from those who have worked hard and laid up a supply of food, protection, sustenance such as plants and seeds and animals for future growth is not the true American way and we as a community will protect our right. While we may feel pain and sorrow at another community’s crises, we can only do so much. All communities giving to a common goal of aid will only work, if it works at all, if the affected don’t wait for help but starts doing what they can to help themselves. The recent disasters such as flooding, hurricanes, wildfires, not only here but around the world illustrate that. If a place is known for disaster, don’t build there, if a hurricane is coming get out your “what-if” plans, keep prepared. Hindsight is twenty-twenty but if it has occurred before it can happen again so planning is essential and that is what we have done for decades. As things fall apart, the communities which are prepared will become more visible targets and even now are being targeted verbally as extremists because we won’t kneel to the destruction of the constitution, our beliefs and our freedom.”

    Turning her head to look at some of the pictures of the Johanssens on the wall, Louise sighs. “Sometimes we must turn our back on those who persist going down the wrong road and not listen or we must allow someone to experience pain and sorrow because they refuse to step up and be responsible. We have one earth we must take care of and we are all, as the human community responsible for our actions. We have decided our actions must speak as loud as out words and continue to work at freedom, self-sufficiency, responsibility, community and righteousness. We have watched as those elected and those placed in positions of responsibility have sold America into slavery and its people down the river claiming to know better what people need instead of what they, the people desire for themselves as positive fulfilled individuals. Things such as bigger houses, cars, tvs, jewelry does not matter if you are hungry, hurting or in despair and that is what many who betray their responsibilities end up with. And in the end, many will pay for their short-sightedness. But we will be here to help bring as many as we can back to safety and protect our land, not just here but across America. We hold it to be a solemn and divine responsibility to not give up and not give in.”

    Penny and Eric sit in stunned silence for several minutes as they continue eating. Putting her fork down, Penny speaks in a strong, decisive voice. “What I’ve found with Eric is too valuable to lose. What I had before him was even too valuable. I will continue all I can to be prepared to help our community and extend out to others so we can be ready to face what comes. I knew that many people seem asleep to what is happening, that many take for granted that someone will save them, that they were never taught to be responsible first then seek help. I know there are things that happen that overwhelm people and sometimes we can help and other times we might be able to help pick up the pieces and sometimes we can do nothing due to distance, need or severity. But where we can we will, where we can we will teach, where we can’t we will grieve with and for and redouble our efforts to strengthen our land so it can bear what is coming. We won’t be indifferent but we will not, no we cannot beggar our resources when it is beyond our capabilities and will weaken our foundations so we fall also. That is not responsibility, that is not wise stewardship, that would be a path to destruction which we can’t and won’t go down. How do you feel about it, Eric?”

    “My love and yes you are that but you are also my soulmate as that is how I feel, also. We probably will come under condemnation because we aren’t willing to just give in and “spread the wealth equally, but as you said, such a way is not feasible, must maintain resources to rebuild as well as alleviate. I will do my best to help, lead, follow or whatever role falls to me to help keep a base, a bastion of America, to preserve our heritage and legacy for all Americans who fight for our constitution, people and country.”

  10. #10
    Thought you might want to see where they're at, and there's a reason the farms are on the west of the town

    1 Pharmacy/Little Market

    2 Dabney's Realtor's

    3 Town's clinic/doctor

    4 Vet's place

    5 Historical museum

    6 Feedstore

    7 Armory

    8 Library

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