Zero Hour Part 2: Badlands by Eamon Ambrose is an intriguing futurisic, dystopian short story. I gave it five stars. It follows Zero Hour Part 1 where the end of the world as we knew it took place. This is part two of a four book series but can be read as a standalone. It did leave me wanting to know more about Sarah & Al's journey.
One interesting development reveals: "Quadras. Many thought they were just a rumour, a robotic bogeyman you warned children about if they didn't behave. Originally designed as a harmless robotics project, but later developed into lethal, relentless killers. They were four-legged creatures capable of blistering speeds over any terrain, & practically impossible to stop....If you saw or heard one you generally didn't live to tell the tale. They were mainly used for flushing out survivors in more remote areas & so weren't seen much in the field."
Sarah & Al who are carried in the same crippled robotic body come across a former colleague.
Sergeant Frank Davis "is a piece of work. If there was anyone you wished didn't survive the attack, it was him. People like Davis were why the human race ended up where it did, yet they still managed to survive, along with the rats & cockroaches....Faced with dying in prison or joining the effort when the attacks began, Davis joined up & quickly rose through the ranks, more because of is brutality & strength than any discernible military skills. Unfortunately, war often makes heroes of men who sometimes don't deserve it, & he was no exception."
Davis manages to kill a quadra, that's unusual in itself. "The second quadra swings around & runs back to its fallen companion, retracting its teeth & begins to nudge it with its head. It emits a strange, melancholy digital sound, growing gradually louder as it lies down beside it. It can't be. Is this machine mourning?"
There is an explosion & Al loses a leg. He replaces it with pieces of the destroyed quadra & they limp along. This is an awesome story & I'm looking forward to Parts 3 & 4.
I received a complimentary kindle copy from Amazon. That did not change my opinion for this review.
Link to purchase: https://www.amazon.com/Zero-Hour-Part-2-Badlands-ebook/dp/B0164QTWDE