As Martin and Susan travel north, making their way through suburban Stoneham, they find a little food by dumpster diving. Susan begins to limp from a bad blister. This leads to an awkward moment, which leads to an even more awkward discussion about Susan's emergency housing options.
After a night of sleeping in the woods, Martin and Susan venture through Stoneham looking for food and water but find little. What they do find is a populace lingering in normalcy bias. Even though it is only the second day of the outage, the two of them wonder long will it be before complacency gives way to desperation.
Stalled traffic on the highway becomes an opportunity for criminals to rob the stranded motorists. Martin hoped to avoid the trouble by walking through the woods, around the ongoing crime scene. A protracted gunfight between the criminals and armed citizens trap Martin and Susan in the woods as daylight fades and a cold night approaches.
Martin tries to find a hotel room for Susan before continuing his trek home. The trouble is, all the other people stuck in Boston by the outage have already filled the hotels, or people are fighting over the few rooms left. They must search farther out from the city.
While on his way to North Station, Martin encounters Susan, the bank teller. He escorts her home through the gridlock. Once there, her apartment house has caught fire. Martin volunteers to help her find a hotel room but one after another of the hotels in town are full with other power outage refugees. His good samaritan deed was becoming quicksand.
One Monday morning in October, the power goes out in Boston and apparently all across the nation. Martin decides to go home rather than get stuck in downtown Boston. With traffic gridlocked and no busses leaving for New Hampshire, his only option is to walk the 50 miles. He's not really ready for that.