…I mean, after she called her ex husband to gloat
The Doclopedia #63
Strongholds: Dog Hill
From the notebooks of Duke Shepherd (as read by Professor Toby Basset)
A few years after the Fall of Humanity, when things were still pretty dicey for everyone, including Dogs, we left the Ranch in our thousands, then separated into smaller groups of 400 each. Dr. Rendell and Dr. Brogofsky had drilled us on the plan until we had it thoroughly memorized, so my group knew that we were headed for Oregon. Things went pretty well, all told and we only lost 6 Dogs and 5 Apes along the way.
Once we got to our assigned area, we began building The Hill. Using every resource we had…the Apes, our telekinetic “hands” and our own muscle power, we moved the heavy concrete pipes into position and connected them. Then we mixed and poured the concrete for the rooms. Finally, we covered it all with soil, leaving only three entryways.
And then we did it all over again for the next five levels.
Once The Hill was finished, we put a half dozen Apes to work planting grass and flower seeds on it while the rest of the Apes and most of the Dogs started building the perimeter wall. Now, at first the wall was just made of posts and wire, but after a few years, we got a really tight thicket of thorny vines going and anything bigger than a fox was never going to get through it. The two gates were made from strong woven wire and steel rebar. Even a rampaging bull couldn’t get through it, and I ought to know because one chased me and I barely got in ahead of him.
Guards patrolled both inside and outside the fence 24 hours a day. We had a watchtower on top of The Hill and it was constantly occupied by an Ape and at least one of the smaller breeds of Dog. We could see for nearly a mile and a half on clear days. Of course, this being west central Oregon, there are quite a lot of not so clear days.
Over time, the settlement grew and the gardens and flocks of animals provided most of the food we needed. Still, hunting patrols brought in a good amount of game, whose populations were rebounding now that the human population was a tiny fraction of what it had been and most of the human towns and cities were recycled by the nanowave.
Once things settled down, we began our assignment of rounding up the now quite primitive humans so we could watch over them. Life went on and The Hill was our home, now and forever more.
Further comment by Professor Basset
And so here we are class, four centuries later. The Hill is now five hills, plus numerous outbuildings, barns, storage areas and farms. The old hedge still stands, but now the moat and several new fences have added even more protection from the wild creatures and the odd roving band of defective humans.
Back then, a Dog could expect to live perhaps 22 years and our Hands could barely lift a half pound rock. Now, some of us are living to nearly 50 (which, I assure you, is no picnic) and our Hands can easily pick up things as heavy as 5 pounds. The Apes, always longer lived than us, are significantly smarter now. We have many conveniences that those Dogs of old would have loved to get their hands on.
So never forget your roots, young pups, and perhaps give a thanks now and again to Duke Shepherd and our founding fathers and mothers.