I heard the revving engine long before she came into sight. She took out the mailbox; crashed into the porch and that was that. She knew more than I did. She knew there were no more police. She knew there were roving gangs of Zombies on the streets…
Copyright 2017 W. G. Sweet, All rights reserved, domestic and foreign
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Mandy had found them later that afternoon as Dog drove aimlessly through the streets that were cleared, following the routes they often took for supplies. He had seen a shadow by the mouth of an alleyway and slowed the truck a block away, unwilling to get ambushed. He sent Alice around the city block so she could come up on the other side of the alleyway on foot, leaving the truck somewhere out of site.
He had made the slow walk to the alleyway alone, both pistols drawn, ready. He had nearly shot her when she leapt out of the alleyway. Torn, bloodied, desperation in her eyes. Alice had screamed from somewhere behind her and they had both avoided the mistake their nerves could have cost them. Alice ran to her and they both collapsed to the ground in tears.
Rob was in the alleyway dying. Mandy told the story once Alice had got some liquid into her and they had all calmed down for a few moments.
She spoke with a voice heavy with emotion, her eyes leaking slowly.
“They came in the late afternoon. I had built a fire by the entrance, we had two deer, fresh blood, I wanted to make sure the dead stayed away, but it didn’t stop them, Mandy said. “They leapt the fire and took us easily, we were completely unprepared. The only reason Rob and I made it out was we were outside when they hit, cleaning the back of the truck, blood…” She took a deep breath and tears began to spill faster from her eyes.
“We went for the entrance, but both of us had left our rifles inside,” She shook her head, “We had…” She shook her head again as if to negate what had happened. “It was only seconds, we thought, maybe minutes, so we left them. We had our pistols, we thought, what else did we need?” She stopped talking and took a few moments to get herself under control.
“It was too late when we got there. They’re strong. Stronger than two men, two strong men, maybe stronger. We killed a half dozen, but it didn’t slow them down, except they were now also thinking of us,” she shrugged. “We spent last night hiding in an old school,” She shrugged nervously, “No ammunition, nothing. I got a piece of pipe, Rob found a fence stake, you know, one of those construction type metal stakes you see all over the city? Sharp, heavy. We huddled together.” She shook her head.
“Maybe just after dawn, it was dirty light through the windows, gray. Makes everything look like it’s black and white… They came out of nowhere. We heard them coming down the street outside, making noise to scare they dead, maybe who knows. Sometimes enough noise scares them, usually attracts them though. They came in and there was nothing we could do. We were right in the entrance-way, both sets of doors shut. They smashed the glass in seconds.” She looked at Alice who kissed her cheek lightly and nodded for her to go on. She sucked in a shuddering breath.
“We killed three guys fast. I got two with that pipe. Just crazy… Just… Crazy. Swinging it for the bleachers, just heads. I don’t think they expected that. The fourth guy Rob got with the stake, but the fifth one shot him before he could get him good enough. I landed that pipe a second later, but it was too late.” She looked at Dog.
“I couldn’t figure where you two got to… I mean we went back to the factory, it was obvious that someone had torched it. I knew it was you. I knew it, but you didn’t come back and I got worried… We’ve been walking it, but Rob couldn’t go any longer.” She held up two flat black, rubber gripped 9 mm guns. Took them from those fuckers back at the school.“ She shook her coat pocket so they could hear the bullets clink together. A few hundred rounds in both pockets. But they would have had us tonight. I can’t carry him.”
Dog bent to look Rob over.
“Careful, Dog. I think he’s bit. He said he wasn’t, but his arm looks bit to me, and when he was on the edge on passing out it was like he was trying to tell me something… Kept lifting the arm, but he couldn’t talk.”
“Think so,” Dog agreed. He looked out the mouth of the alleyway, the shadows were deepening already. Two blocks west he saw a hurried movement , shadows passing behind broken windows. He looked back down at Rob. The bandaging was sections of his shirt, ripped and folded. The blood seeped past it, and occasional bloody bubbles appeared at his lips. A lung shot, Dog knew it. He would die. Maybe soon, maybe later. Moving him would kill him for sure. He sighed.
“Mandy you can travel? I ask because we got to.” Dog shook his head, watching the buildings two blocks down. There were no more movements yet, but he knew there would be, and soon. Mandy followed his eyes as did Alice.
“Yeah, “ she said as she looked back and met his eyes. “Something?”
“Several somethings… May as well go get the truck and get back here fast,” Dog told them. “Don’t waste no time.” Mandy nodded and a few seconds later she and Alice were running down the sidewalk and the truck that was parked a few blocks away in hiding.
Dog turned back to Rob. “Rob… Man… I’m sorry,” Dog told him. He pulled his knife from the sheath at his side and with one quick thrust ran it through his temple and into his brain. A little crunch of bone, but it was thin, the blade passed through easily. Too easily. It made Dog sick, but it wasn’t the first time he’d done it and it wouldn’t be the last, he knew. Rob never moved.
Dog wiped the blade, sheathed it, and then sprinted down the block in the direction Mandy and Alice had taken. He met them part way up the block. Mandy bought the truck to a rubber burning halt and Dog jumped in. He shook his head as her eyes questioned him. Not about Rob, he knew, but about where they were going now.
“I think it’s time to leave New York… Jersey… Head south, maybe,” Dog said. He met each of their eyes looking for dissent, but there was none.
“That factory got us too complacent,” Alice said. Mandy nodded.
“Let’s find us a place for a few days then… Get our shit together… Some gear… Maps… And then we’ll lite out.” Dog leaned back into the seat.
Mandy dropped the gear into drive and the big truck lumbered off down the street searching for ways out of the tangle of streets.
#Undead #SciFi #ZombieApocalypse
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