George rubbed the sea salt between his fingers and blew it into the winds. Gone, like all else he’d known before.

Toes perched on the edge, he squat low, riding the light bob of the seas. He was prone to seasickness – or motion sickness, as it had been back when they all travelled on land, by car and other motorized vehicles – or had been, in his previous life. He had sea legs now, had King George. Literal ones too, he thought, impressed by his own sturdiness as he pulled up the bare net. His skin was red and flaky, but his forearms were all sinew. Alone, he could admit to himself that life after the end of civilisation was actually quite satisfying. It certainly beat working in an office.

George released the net and blew his nose out between thumb and forefinger. Perhaps fresh fish was off the menu tonight, but he still had some salted supplies from weeks before. George walked past his tent and saluted the flags: one for Her Majesty’s once and future kingdom, and the other for his own sovereign raft (his above hers). Three days with no luck – there was no haul to be had in these waters. He unfurled his small sails and sat at the raft’s bow, waiting for the wind to whisk him where it may. The sun hanging low in the sky still felt warm.