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The Burnout Chapter Twenty Three

The remainder of the mob army had either been shot or disappeared into the rural countryside. They left behind more than one hundred living captives, most of whom were children. Twenty three captives died along with thirty eight of the attackers. Most of what they were carrying had been looted from the homes and farms south of Winona between the town and Interstate 20.

The town suffered six dead and fifteen wounded, one being serious. Being the size it was, Winona had no medical center and relied on the clinic in Big Sandy. Stubby took the most serious cases in his truck while the rest would have to be cared for by the town as best they could.

Conkle collected several guns from the dead, but soon realized they had as little ammunition as the town did.  Further, the attack probably exhausted half of the available ammunition they did have so more would have to be found and soon. Few believed the same raiders would try and attack Winona in the same manner, but none doubted that more problems would soon follow.

Patty and Lamar did what they could to help, but in the end realized their staying would only put a further drain on the town's limited resources. They made their good byes to the few friends they had made and went back to the church after retrieving Cassie and Katelyn from their hiding spot.

"You wanted to take that little girl, didn't you?" asked Lamar about the five year old Patty had helped.

"Sure, who wouldn't? She did not know where her mother or father were and she was all alone." Patty replied.

"So? Why didn't you? It's not like we are turning away lost children this week." remarked Lamar.

"Because if her parents are alive and make their way here, they will find her in Winona. Besides, we are going to be running and possibly gunning to get home ourselves. That's no place for a five year old." said Patty sharply.

Pastor Stone was outside while they prepared their gear and bikes for the next leg of their journey. He asked them once more if they wouldn't stay, at least for a few days, but Patty and the rest were insistent.

"Pastor, you will have a hard enough time feeding the people in town along with all those new children that you don't need us taking more as well." she said.

"Miss, the Lord will provide. Thank you for your assistance and courage. The Lord blesses those who strive in His name." said the Pastor.

"Just ask Him to see us safely home," said Patty.

"I will young lady. You, all of you will be in our prayers. God bless you." he said.

Patty, Lamar and the teens mounted their bikes and headed out to the north, to Big Sandy and then east towards Dallas. Patty was worried as usual.

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