How are we going to get out of this? We have an army of undead all around and god knows where we are! I know that there is little to no chance of us surviving, even if we make it through this challenge, there will just be another waiting for us. And while the enemy grows with each fallen survivor our numbers only grow smaller, and our resources dwindle more and more. What’s the point in fighting, if there’s no hope of victory?

Monday, September 23, 2013

The Dead Chapter 21

Book 1: The Dead

Chapter 21

Nicole had been completely taken out of her element. She had a job, she was doing well at university and had good relationships with her friends, but now she was, for all intents and purposes, trapped inside a clinic and in charge of 4 other people. She didn't know how she was put in charge but she understood why, Simon was injured and while that injury was healing his infection was getting worse, he rarely left the room he was set up in. The same could be said for Daphne, who, on the rare occasions she left his side, did little more then ask were the others were with the medicine and why they weren't doing more for him. Nicole had known Daphne for a long time but she was still surprised with the way she was acting. Although with what has been happening the past few days Nicole thought she should be more surprised that the rest of them were taking it so well.

Daniel had managed to recover his senses and make himself useful. Without being asked he began helping Brooke and Nicole with barricading the clinic and ensuring that it was safe. However he still often seemed to fade into the background, and he was not the most vocal of people. Even if he does have the capacity and knowledge to lead a group, he did not have the social skills. Brooke was intelligent, calm and had no qualms in giving her opinion. In fact she and Nicole fought often over decision such as gun training, which Nicole was opposed to. She didn’t think it necessary yet and she knew that scared people with gun training but only one gun is not a good idea. But Brooke didn’t know the others well and the way she met them and her suspicious behaviour meant that they turned to Nicole for leadership.

While they were barricading the clinic Nicole began to wonder at how intelligent it was to stay in one place, no matter how defendable. Now the clinic only had one exit/entrance but Nicole had found a deployable fire escape on the second floor, meaning if that entrance gets blocked they could still escape making the clinic an efficient fortress. But it was still only a clinic, there was little food here that would last long, especially if the power goes (and Nicole knew that it would eventually). Basic medical supplies such as bandages were aplenty but besides that Nicole was worried. If Will and the others didn’t return soon she would have to send more of the small group away to find food, but with only one gun someone would be left defenceless. If they had more people, more time, and more supplies they may have been able to set up a system to acquire food safely and regularly.

But was that wise? Staying in one place meant that without distractions the dead outside would gather, attracted by the smell and sound but unable to get through. Until either their resources ran out or they number increased to a point where they could break through. Nicole knew-hoped-that there was a solution, but for now she could only wait and see whether the others would return.

Daniel walked over to her when she was quietly contemplating that issue, among others. ‘Are you alright?’ he asked and Nicole blinked, noticing his presence for the first time
‘Fine,’ she replied, trying to smile, ‘just thinking’
‘You don’t have to try and calm me down anymore Nicole, you can talk to me’
‘Who said it was you I was trying to calm?’
‘You?’ Daniel looked amused, ‘you’re probably the most level-headed one here’
‘You should have seen me when the found me,’ Nicole joked. Daniel realised what she meant and shook his head, ‘I didn’t even think Nicole, your family are they…’
‘I don’t know,’ Nicole replied, looking down
‘Well I’m sure’- Daniel began but was stopped when Brooke ran over and grabbed his shoulder, she looked startled. ‘What’s wrong?’ Nicole asked quickly, in a hushed voice
‘There’s someone outside,’ she replied in an even quieter voice.

They quietly moved to a small gap in the furniture and random things blocking the windows that had been left open for this exact purpose. They couldn’t see much, the sun was glaring in their direction and although they could definitely see movement the angle was bad as whoever, whatever, it was approached the other side of the building. Daphne emerged from Simon’s room, and seeing them peering through the window jumped to the positive outcome. ‘Are they back?’ Daphne said far too loudly for Nicole’s liking and even as they whispered warnings and gestured for her to stop she approached the door.

Daphne reached the door before their warnings did, but as she began to grab the handle she was pulled away as Daniel moved her out of sight, his hand muffling her protests. Nicole moved slowly until Daphne could see her, after a few gestures Daphne finally understood the situation and Daniel let her go. The three of them were now behind a pillar in the centre of the room while Brooke was still struggling to get an idea of what was outside. Scenarios ran through Nicole’s head: Could it be Will or one of the others? Why wouldn’t they come in? Could they be injured? Or is it one of the dead?

But it didn’t stay a mystery for long as the door, unlocked by Daphne’s foolish actions, slowly opened. Brooke could probably see the person now, and it definitely was a person, but from Nicole’s vantage point all she could see was the barrel of a gun appear. As Nicole hid back behind the pillar, struggling to control her breathing all positive outcomes of this encounter left her mind. The one she decided on was that it was one of the raiders, or more, come to exact revenge. She saw Brooke’s revolver one of the chairs near the pillar, Brooke had been showing Daniel how to clean it before this began. More scared than she thought she could ever be, Nicole watched silently as Daniel reached for the gun. Then she heard Daphne scream as a gunshot rang out.

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