The Whiskeyknitters ventured out from the pub at last and headed over to the parking garage. Their cars, thank goodness, still worked, so they caravanned the short hop to Allison’s house.
They were trekking up the steep driveway when Shannan burst out with, “I can’t stop thinking about something Oh Soon said.”
“Oh Soon?” Kate asked.
“One of Allison’s childhood friends,” Mera replied. “She came to the yoga and knitting retreat.”
“She was watching The Walking Dead and lamenting that none of the survivors of the apocalypse were knitters,” continued Shannan.
“It really is a hobby that’s great for the end of the world,” Allison said, unlocking the back door and gesturing the others inside. “You get a couple of fiber animals, shear them, spin the yarn, and have blankets and clothes galore. Handy.”
Pamela laughed. “I guess I’m better prepared for survivalism than I thought.”
Shannan dropped her stuff in the chair next to the door and turned to face the room. “Y’all, she said if the apocalypse hit, first thing she’d be doing is raiding yarn shops.”
You could have heard a pin drop in the ensuing silence. All the knitters understood immediately. John looked thoroughly confused, but remained silent.
Allison said it first, “Smyrna.”
“You’re already going RIGHT THERE,” Rachel said. “Oh god. No. I can’t go with you. Pets. Plus I’m not sure I can fit all my existing yarn in my car anyway.”
“Tie garbage bags to your roof if you have to,” advised Shannan.
“Oh, good idea.”
“It’d be wrong,” said Mera, still focused on the temptation before them all. “Wouldn’t it be wrong?”
“It’s the law of the jungle, Mera,” said Kate. “We have to survive.”
“Consider the alternative,” said Allison. “Our fiber farm friends are hours away by car. What if we can’t acquire our own fiber animals and we run out of yarn and roving and then there’s a gas shortage? We couldn’t get to the sheep. We’d be fleece-less. We’d be the Whiskey-not-knitters at the end of the world.”
They contemplated. Mental wheels turned. Ethics crumbled.
“We could at least drive by and see if there’s anybody there,” said Pamela.
Allison handed out the butternut squash and started rummaging in the pantry.
“Hand me one of those bags,” she called over her shoulder.
Rachel handed it to her, and Allison started to fill it with Ball jars of jams and jellies, pickles, and other delicious homemade canned goods.
Shannan nodded, “Good thinking. Want me to grab the shower meat from downstairs?”
“Naw,” said Allison. “We finished up the last of the prosciutto last week.”
They filled up water bottles for the road and went their separate ways.
*Years earlier, Shannan had used Allison’s basement shower to successfully cure pancetta. Allison had been using it to cure small batches of duck prosciutto ever since. (In case “shower meat” is a regionally-specific term. Or Whiskeyknitters-specific.)