As Part II opens, Blake, Kris, and Tucker have just awakened on their first day in the underground bunker, which is in complete darkness. Blake ventures above to find the solar panel converter box unhooked, which alerts his spidey senses that someone knows about the bunker, or at least their property — and he resolves to closely surveil the video monitoring system, which covers the bulk of their property.
The close quarters are rough on everyone’s nerves, especially as Blake and Kris renegotiate their marriage after his year-long absence, but all three learn coping skills from each other, and Kris is grateful for Blake’s splurges, like a tankless water heater, which affords a greater measure of comfort in the steady 55-degree underground temperature.
A week into their stay, Tucker comes down with a chest infection, and his temperature soon soars into triple digits. After several days of desperation, Blake plans another trip above to fetch pine needles — a remedy Kris picked up from survival reading — but Tucker begs him not to go, frantically warning of people overhead. Sure enough, when Blake emerges from the bunker, he spots a group of strangers at the gate. He grabs the pine needles and returns safely, enraged that trespassers climbed the high fence to set up camp and take advantage of the apple tree — how did they know it was there? — until one of the intruders takes serious protective action, and Blake reconsiders.
As the installment ends, spring has arrived — the trespassers left when the snow started — and as they venture above for a few hours, the family starts planning their new life. They have a lot to take into consideration, little of which was anticipated, but an unexpected source assures them that not only will everything be all right, but someone is coming to save them.
This novel is available in installments exclusively through Book Cave for now. The first installment is available at https://mybookcave.com/d/a27cd2e1, where readers can sign up for further previews. When the first installment is published on Amazon in September, all subsequent installments will be sold there.