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?
Thursday, December 11, 2014
'Andria, run inside and tell everyone what's happening,' I told her, not tearing my eyes away from the army of dead approaching
'But-' she started
'Go!' I yelled and she jumped, 'and tell Daniel to get the generator loaded onto the ute.' As Andria ran inside Will and Nicole came out, 'what's happening?' Will asked, Wendy pointed as Will and Nicole turned and saw what was approaching
'Why are they coming here?' Nicole wondered aloud
'The gunshots,' I answered, 'they must have been close enough to here them before'
'But a whole hoard? Why didn't we see them earlier?' Wendy asked
'They must have been in the side roads, quite a few in each one, hidden by the houses,' Will surmised, 'when they heard the sound they moved to the main road.' As he finished his thought, Connor appeared, asking the same question, but I stopped him half way through, 'Connor, I need you to take Will and Monica and get the guns and supplies together,' I needed to take charge here or all we had just agreed on would be forgotten, 'Nicole, you and Daphne get any medicine and equipment together and meet them.'
I was stopped by Wendy grabbing my arm and pulling me around, I saw Steven half way down they hill, by now there were about twenty of the dead on this side of the hill, and once they saw, smelt or, felt, what was here they broke into a sprint. But Wendy had seen Steven begin to stumbled and as I turned I saw him fall and roll several feet before stopping, clutching a bleeding ar,. Connor and Nicole stepped forward to help, but I held out my arm to stop them, 'do what I told you we'll help Steven!' Me and Wendy ran to help, but I kept looking at the others until I was sure they weren't following. It took us longer than I'd like to run uphill to reach him, by the time we'd made it Wendy had to shoot the two closest deadmen before they grabbed hold. I pulled Steven up, his arm around my neck, I could see his injury, it wasn't too deep, but it must have stung.
I thought we were going to make it until I felt something wet and sticky on my shoulder, it was the hand of a deadman, most of the skin and flesh had been ripped away, leaving a disgusting, pale red mess remaining. I twisted and pulled away, almost falling myself, and saw a face that was much like the hand, I couldn't help but wonder what had happened to leave him in this state. He came at me again, and I knew I couldn't fight him off without dropping Steven, and Wendy was fighting a deadwomen who had gotten to close. Just as I was about to drop Steven, possibly leaving him to die, I heard a deafening gunshot, and searing pain across my cheek, and saw te deadman's head explode, I turned ignoring the pain and kept running for the station, vaguely aware of Brooke on top of the roof with the rifle.
While I was stumbling towards temporary safety, those already inside were in a state of panic. Will and Connor were in the storeroom, Monica had driven the Ute around and shattered the window, allowing them to pass everything to her. 'We're making the wrong decision,' Connor started
'What do you mean?' Will answered, to afraid to think properly
'We shouldn't be running, we have enough people, enough resources we can fight them back,' Connor moved closer and Will saw that he was just as afraid as he was
'They're not an army, they won't run away when they think they're beaten, they will keep coming until they are all dead, or we are,' strangely Will had become calmer while arguing
'You don't think we can win?'
'Not without losing someone, and if I'm being honest this building isn't worth it, there are too many small roads near it, and it not exactly built for this'
'I was... I am a policeman,' Connor walked away again, back to packing up the guns, 'this building is supposed to meaning something, it's meant to be safe.' Will walked up and put his hand on his shoulder, 'I'm sorry, we've all lost homes.'
Finally Wendy, Steven and I made it, and blasted through the doors, Wendy moving a desk in front of it after us. Nicole was there with a wheelchair, which I put Steven in, despite his protests of being fine. 'Is everything loaded up?' I asked, looking around
'The medical stuff is,' Daphne replied, smiling strangely, I think she was just happy to be helpful.
'This is the last box on our end,' Will said as a strangely quiet Connor passed Monica the box
'Where's Daniel?' I asked looking around, but before anyone said anything, Andria ran into the room, calling my name
'Todd!' she was out of breath, 'Daniel's got a problem with the generator.'
The others went back to work as Andria, Connor and I ran towards the generator room. The sound of the dead was getting louder as they approached the station, I knew we had little time to spare. When we reached Daniel I saw him struggling with the generator, surrounded by tools. I turned to Andria, 'Andria! I need you to go back and tell the others to leave'
'What about you?' she almost screamed
'We'll try and get the generator out of here, go!'
'Wait,' she yelled quickly, and placed something in my hand, 'its a police radio, I found it just before'-
'Go Andria!' I pushed her out the door and closed it.
Connor and I tried to help Daniel with the generator, but we were of little use, the generator had metal brackets that were fused the the floor. After five minutes we heard the glass break and new the dead were inside, over the radio Will told us the had all gotten away, some dead were following them but the majority were still at the station, and he also said that Wendy and Simon were still here, outside in Connor's car. I cursed quietly, somehow I felt the three of us weren't getting out of here, and I wished Wendy and Simon hadn't stayed behind, simply to watch us die. Another five minutes passed, the sound of the dead's footsteps got louder, and then quieter again, they were inside, but they hadn't caught our scent and had slowed their walk, until they found out we were hear, then the door would do little to stop them.
I looked down at my gun, it didn't feel like a game anymore, it felt terrifyingly, horrifyingly real. I knew there was one way out of it, one way to avoid a horrific, bloody death, and an even more horrific after-life, if it could be called that.
We came this far, I was going to give up now, I would prefer to die and become one of them and know that we had done all we could to survive than to give up here and now. We would survive this, I knew it in my gut, with or without the generator we were going to get out of here. There was a thin glass window at the top of one of the walls, not enough to crawl through, but maybe the tools that were ineffective on the generator could be used to widen it. I reached out to pull Daniel away and explain, but my mouth snapped closed and i jumped back as the window was smashed open, and bloody hands reached in.
Saturday, November 8, 2014
I had to walk away after Will said that, using the excuse of going to the toilet. A sympathetic glance from Nicole as I brush past her told me it didn't work. As i got further away from the others my pace quickened until by the time I burst through the front doors I was almost running. I bent over, feeling nauseous. I slid down to the ground and leant against the brick wall, I grimaced slightly at the realisation that my first act as officially leader was to run away.In the distance I could see Steven at the peak of a hill, he hadn't seen me come outside. I was happy about that, I wanted to be alone.
But I wasn't alone for long, from inside I heard the voices of Will, Nicole and Andria discussing who should be the one to talk to me. In the end Andria won and I heard the door open slowly, I turned and saw her slowly edge out. I felt annoyed, both at her intrusion into my panic attack and at how nervous she was to even talk to me. I was also worried about how useful she could be if she was scared to simply talk to someone.
Eventually she found her voice, even if it was hoarse, 'Are-are you alright?'
No, I thought, but my voice had other ideas, 'yeah, I'm just, overwhelmed, worried I guess'
'You're only feeling worried and overwhelmed now?' Andria had some humour and confusion in her voice
'I don't know Andria, until now we've always been dealing with one crisis or another. And I always felt afraid, and lost, but never over whelmed. It felt like...' I realised as I said the words that its was exactly how I had felt, 'it felt like a game.'
'A game?' Andria sounded disappointed and I worried I had said the wrong thing, but after a moment her face softened, 'I think I understand'
'Really?' I was expecting harsh judgement, I'd just convinced these people to trust me as their leader and then admitted I felt like it wasn't real
'Yeah,' she said warmly as she sat down next to me, 'its not that you didn't feel scared, or overwhelmed, it was just that...' I found the words before she did
'It was that I felt, not even consciously, that if we just made it through the next few days we would find some magical solution,' I shook my head as I realised how childish I'd been, 'or someone to tell us what to do, and everything would go back to normal.' We both sat still and silent as we dealt with our horrifying new state of mind, we were never going to get out of this.
'But you know,' Andria began speaking again, startling me out of my strangely calm silence, 'The situation you were in before, the situation everyone was in those first few days, it required that state of mind to survive.' I looked at her strangely, trying to process, well everything, it seemed recently even the smallest piece of information required strenuous thought to process. 'What do you mean?' I asked disbelievingly, 'how could that benefit things?'
'Having a sense of calm and control, when in a state of constant danger and motion,' Andria's tone seemed different, more stable and, well adult than usual, 'it would have kept you calm, and that feeling you were in a game, it would've helped you make decisions as you were using logic you've used before'
'You're right,' I realised suddenly, 'I was acting on instincts I learnt from... games and tv shows,' the fact i survived show long made me laugh, but not in a good way
'And that kept you alive,' Andria moved closer and grabbed my shoulder, 'look at you, you became our leader and you had to go outside for air. If you had to do that every time you made a decision before... you wouldn't have made it here.'
I knew she was right, back then if a decision had to be made it had to be made quickly, looking back I can't believe we were able to do it. But if those instincts left me, if now every decision to careful thought and time, what does that mean for our future? Andria seemed to read my mind, 'but now, things are different, we have resources that need to be protected, we have... infrastructure for lack of a better term. You are a leader now, not a member of a group of survivors, those instincts you were using before are useful, but they aren't what you need right now.' I looked at her for a while after she finished talking, as opposed to the deep thoughts of a moment ago all that was in my head was her words. These new worries and concerns, they weren't a sign i was the wrong person to lead them, they were a sign I was the right one.
Before this talk Andria seemed worrying, someone who might be a burden to the group, but now i realised I was wrong. She was not a warrior, I don't think I could ever see her leading a charge into battle, but she did have something few others in the group did, insight. Insight into what people think, why they do the things they do. It was that insight that help me figure out what I needed to now, somehow she reached me, even in my overwhelmed state. And it was then that I realised her worth. 'Andria,' I spoke, while I was thinking she had moved away, and was now looking at the sun starting to set, 'I think I've found a job for you'
'Group therapist?' she joked
'No,' I replied through laughter, 'our... organiser, with all these different jobs and people in charge of each section I need someone to make sure everyone knows what's going on, I can't be everywhere at once'
'You want me to be your secretary?' she wasn't too thrilled at the idea
'Yes! No!' I quickly corrected, 'I want you to be the person who make sure each group is worked together properly, I want you to be... my second-in-command'
'Are you sure about this? a few moments ago I was a blubbering mess at the sight of even one dead man'
'Thats the point! This position won't require you to interact with any dead men, just alive ones.'
Our conversation was cut short when Wendy walked out through the door. As it closed I caught a glimpse of Nicole and Will standing in the doorway, obviously eavesdropping intently on our conversation. I smiled at Wendy as she stood bathed in sunlight, I realised that just as my previous mentality made me unaware to some of the dangers of our situation, it also made me neglect what was right in front of me. I opened my mouth to say hello, but Andria spoke first, 'I'm glad my job won't force me to interact with the dead, but I don't think they'll give me a choice.' I turned confused but when I saw where she was looking I realised what she meant. Steven was running down the hill towards us, just as the first of the dead appeared at the top.
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Daniel and I walked back to the station, he was shaken up understandably, but otherwise unharmed. Simon and Connor stayed outside, worried that their gunshots would attract others. When we got inside Brooke, Will and Andria were sitting around a desk. 'Where did you learn to shoot like that?' I asked Brooke, feeling impressed, and jealous
'I told you before,' she said quickly, 'my father taught me' I wasn't exactly confident in her honesty, but I didn't press the issue, skill like that is what we needed, and I didn't want to antagonise anyone. 'So he's dead then?' Andria said shakily, 'I mean, again'
'Yes,' Will replied before me, 'you don't have to be afraid.' Andria shook her head quickly then got up and left the room before we could stop her 'is she alright?' said Steven, walking into the room, he sounded shocked 'I heard gunshots, Wendy told me what happened, she took over my watch'
'Thats alright, we're all a little jumpy,' Brooke replied, 'someone should go see if she's alright'
'I'll go,' I said quickly, I was feeling guilty about leaving Andria alone with Kyle anyway.
I checked a few rooms before I heard her voice coming from where Nicole had set herself up, 'It's not that I'm scared,' Andria sobbed, 'it's that I'm ashamed, you, Brooke, and Monica have made yourselves useful, you're important and strong,' she put an emphasis on the last word, 'all i had to do was face one zombie and I freak out, I was an absolute train wreck,' she calmed down a bit before she spoke again, 'I was a burden'
'No, Andria, you weren't a burden,' Nicole started, through a crack in the door I saw her put a hand on Andria's shoulder, 'look, out of all of us, your the one who has had the least experience fighting these... things. What you thought we expected you to leap to action and save the day?' Nicole and Andria both laughed at that, 'none of us are heroes, and no one expects you to be, alll we are, is part of a team'
'Yeah,' Andria stopped crying, mostly, 'but I'm not a very helpful part am I?' Nicole hugged her close
'You'll find your place.'
Andria got up and thanked Nicole, some strength returning to her voice, but as she walked out and saw me I saw some panic return, but it subsided and she nodded to me as she walked away. 'You,' Nicole said, suddenly behind me and talking in a tone that made me feel five years old, 'in here, now.' I sheepishly walked in and sat down, as soon as I did I felt a wave of exhaustion as the previous few hours events caught up with me and I held my head in my hands. I went from being chastised like a five year old to feeling like an eighty year old. 'You have to do something,' was all Nicole said as she lent against the desk
'About what?' I asked as a genuine question, I honestly did not now what to do next
'Everything,' Nicole's air of calm and control broke as she slid down until she was sitting on the ground, 'it's just that we've found somewhere to stay, possibly indefinitely, but for most of us when we're not keeping watch we're just sitting around.' Nicole's voice became stronger as she stopped feeling sorry for herself and started to feel confident again, 'we need to give people jobs, responsibilities, and when they're not doing those responsibilities, they need'-
'They need to learn to shoot,' Connor interrupted, neither me or Nicole noticed him come in, and I felt a pang of annoyance at his intrusion, but he was right, so all I did was nod.
Nicole was the obvious choice for a medical role, Daphne volunteered to be her assistant, and Nicole begrudgingly agreed. Will was put in charge of supplies like food and petrol, with Connor helping him out with the weapons side. Brooke was put in charge of the watch and scouting schedule, with me helping out. Monica, Wendy and Steven volunteered to be scouts, people to go beyond what we explored previously on foot to search for survivors and supplies, also to warn us if a horde was nearby. Daniel and Simon were put in charge of the generator and the cars. 'What should I do,' Andria spoke quietly, and only after everyone else was silent. Everyone except Steven, who was on watch, had gathered to discuss what would happen next. It seems the topic was on everyone's minds, everyone was eager to regain some form of structure and individual purpose. Everyone had their skills, even Daphne was able to convince us that she would be a help, not a hinderance, but when Andria spoke up not one person new of a spot available, or a particular skill she possessed that would be useful. 'You can help us out,' Daniel said. finally and everyone felt relief as the awkward situation passed, except Andria, all she felt was guilt and shame.
'There's only one thing left to decide on then,' Nicole said, it sounded like she had rehearsed it in her head, 'we need a leader, someone to organise this, someone to go to with problems so we don't just start fighting amongst ourselves'
'How about you then?' Brooke suggested confidently, 'you did it before back at the clinic, you could do it here'
'No way,' Nicole through her hands up, 'back then we were just holding out until the others returned, we need someone who can actually plan ahead and decide what to do next, that's not me'
'What about Connor?' Will pitched in, though it was more of a question than a suggestion, 'he's a police officer so he's used to making decisions about people's safety'
'Well, I mean I'd accept, if you decide it's the right thing,' Connor replied, trying to find a middle ground between modest and authoritative
'But he doesn't know us,' Daphne said determinedly, 'and we don't know him'
'That's not necessarily a bad thing,' Wendy explained, 'none of us are more or less familiar to him, he'd be unbiased. And as for us not knowing him well, we all know Daniel, it'd be weird if he was our leader' Daniel looked slightly insulted, 'no offense,' Wendy added
'But isn't that why we stayed together?' Simon interrupted everyone jumping on Connor's bandwagon, which I was grateful for, 'friends, people we know can be trusted to do more to keep us safe, their less likely to sacrifice us for their own purposes'
'That was the plan,' Will said quietly, remembering the first days of this... apocalypse
'In that case I think you should do it,' Nicole nodded in my direction
'Me?' I had been expecting it but still I was unsure of how to reply, 'I guess I could do it-I mean if you want me to do it I'- I stopped as I saw everyone in the room looking at me, I hardened my resolve, 'I can do it, I can be your leader'
'I'd follow you,' Will agreed, several others nodded, Wendy, Simon, Daphne
'I think of all of us you'd be the logical choice,' Nicole added comfortingly and Andria and Brooke showed their agreement as well. Daniel didn't say anything but came and stood near Will and Nicole, only Connor remained undecided, but he became tense as soon as Simon started talking, but no that everyone had sided with me we sighed and shook his head, 'if not me, it had to have been you.' I'm not sure whether that was an agreement but I took it, and Will looked at me smiling and added finally, 'it's decided then, from now on all major decisions, plans and problems go through you,' with poked my chest playfully, 'you're our leader now.'
Thursday, January 16, 2014
There was an achingly long silence after the bite was revealed. We didn't know what to do, we'd never seen an actual infected person before, not one who had been bitten anyway. Kyle was the first to react though, pushing me away. Connor reacted next, drawing his gun and aiming it at Kyle's head.
I backed out of the cell and Andria shut it behind me. 'What should we do?' she asked, but it was unclear who she was asking. 'Well we're not going to just shoot him,' I said, nodding my head an Connor's gun still pointing at Kyle who had retreated to the back of the cell. 'Why not?' Connor said, not taking his eyes off the prisoner, 'there's nothing else we can do for him'
'Who don't know that for sure,' I argued, I didn't really want to see someone's brains splattered on the wall of a cell no matter who they were.
For the first time Connor turned to look at me. For a moment he said nothing, mulling it over. 'Fine,' he said eventually, lowering his gun, just as we were about to tell the others we heard laughter from the cell. Kyle was now lying down, his back against the wall, 'you people are weak,' he said through his laughter, 'if I was back with the others I'd be dead already'
'Don't tempt me,' I answered back, trying to sound intimidating, by the increase in laughter I don't think it worked. Connor turned to Andria as we were leaving, 'stay here and keep an eye on him, if he does anything come and get us.'
We gathered everyone except Steven and Simon, who were watching the roads. 'So what have you found out?' Nicole asked first
'His names Kyle,' I said, 'him and their leader, Anthony, are the only ones that survived'
'If you call that surviving,' Connor grunted
'What do you mean?' Will asked him
'Kyle's been bitten,' I said quickly. There was another long silence as that sunk in. Daphne was the first to speak, 'well what are we waiting for then? shouldn't we... you know' I crossed my arms
'No I don't, do what Daphne?'
'Kill him,' she said quickly, swallowing
'Of course,' I handed her my gun, 'go ahead.' She looked at the gun for a moment, her eyes wide. 'Well?' I asked shoving the gun at her, but Nicole moved forward and took it off me, 'for christ's sake,' she looked at me, 'you done?' I looked at her annoyed at myself for losing my temper, 'sorry'
'I'll do it,' Wendy piped up and reached her hand out for the gun, 'I'm fine with doing it'
'That's probably healthy,' Will said sarcastically
'Look,' she explained, 'the way I see it is he's basically one of the dead already, what's the point of prolonging the inevitable and risking our safety'
'She has a point,' Connor said. Great now my girlfriends on the same side as him, I thought, 'but there could still be something we can do for him,' I looked at everyone, 'anything. Nicole! You're a sciency person, maybe you could some sort of test?'
'Oh sure,' she replied, 'I'll just hop into the fully equipped bioengineering lab that I packed' I ignored her
'Will! Was there anything from the hospital that we could use?' he shook is head, 'there's nothing we can do for him?'
'There's one thing,' Brooke said coldly, cocking her revolver. But at that time we were interrupted by a scream, it was Andria.
We all ran into the other room to find Andria running towards us. 'What happened?' I asked
'He-he turned,' she sobbed, 'he kept running at the bars until,' she gasped at the memory, 'his shoulder broke and he got out so I ran'
'Is he behind you?'
'No, I locked the doors'
'What about the other one?' Connor asked. But Andria didn't answer him, just looked at him in fear. We left Andria with Will and Nicole to try and calm her down while the rest of us went searching for zombie Kyle. 'Where does that door lead?' I asked Connor, he blinked while trying to remember
'The main office area, then the entrance,' he replied. I stopped, 'he's outside?!'
Daniel was feeling confident about the future of this place, there didn't seem to be any dead around for a while and the place was easily defensible. Also with the generator they had electricity, which would help. His thoughts and optimism were shattered however when he heard shooting from behind him. A deadman, the marauder they'd brought in was running straight toward him, with Simon shooting inaccurately behind him. He raised his gun, with Kyle running toward him he hoped he had little chance at missing him entirely. He pulled the trigger, heard a click, but no bang. The gun had jammed, Daniel had no idea what had happened or what he could do about. Suddenly all he could think about was the zombie ripping him apart. His sense returned to him and he began to run in the opposite direction, away from the zombie, away from the station.
We came out the station to find Simon frantically trying to reload. I turned and saw Kyle, his right arm flapping uselessly as he ran, chasing after Daniel. 'Why is it he firing?' Connor asked
'Does it matter?' I asked incredulously as I began to run after them, hoping to get a better shot.
I couldn't lose Daniel, I wouldn't, leadership struggle or no I never wanted to see another friend die. Losing Caleb was hard, but they'd just met and I wasn't physically there. To see someone I'd known since high school die right in front of me, and in such a horrific way, I couldn't even think about without it tearing at my mind. I had to catch him. But a shot rang out, louder than a handgun, and I saw dead-Kyle collapse, it's head in pieces. I span around and saw Brooke lower a rifle, and casually walk back into the station.
Author's note: my laptop's been broken so it's been difficult to write, but I've found another method now so I may be able to write more, but there are some formatting issues so i apologise for that in advance