Of course, Sebastian wasn’t going to let a little thing like the apocalypse get him down. Far from it: he saw it as an opportunity to play with a vastly increased store of components which he was free to scavenge. His slight frame and sixth sense for things that were large and angry–honed by many years on the playground–served him well in picking through the debris of a collapsed society. Things he never could have afforded for his experiments and gadgets were suddenly free for the taking.

Even with his avoidance skills, the question of what to do when confronted with another angry scavenger–or, worse, Slow Walkers or Fast Walkers–did occupy a fair bit of Sebastian’s time. Many of the other survivors relied on guns, but Sebastian saw a plethora of weaknesses inherent in firearms, not the least of which was that most gun stores had been thoroughly looted and ammunition was scarce. One thing there were plenty of, though, were batteries–every size from AAA to D, and kept in every corner grocery. For a long-ago merit badge, Sebastian has experimented with getting a battery to release its entire charge as a directed zap of energy. It was a simple matter to expand the concept and combine the necessary parts with a few springs, coils, and triggers from real guns.

The first scavenger had laughed when he saw Sebastian loading what looked like a shotgun with D cells instead of shells. He was still laughing when the expended charge stopped his heart and Sebastian ejected the smoking and spent batteries onto the cracked pavement.

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