Title: FVZA Fiction
Description: Some stuff I wrote.
Cyber78 - May 19, 2007 10:43 PM (GMT)
For anyone interested, I've written up a bit of FVZA fiction in my spare time. It's still a work in progress so there'll be more to come. And it's pretty much the same premise as this RPG thus far;
It had been just another day at the office, you know, filing paperwork, negotiating with the boss, chatting with coworkers over who’d been screwing whose secretary, and attempting to sneak out for a game of golf. Being lunchtime and all I was sitting in my cubicle eating the lunch that I had packed; PB&J with an apple and some pretzels. Although I could’ve been having some sort of processed bird product from behind the cafeteria, I had decided against eating food from there around the time Glen from down in accounting started mentioning a strong lack of food purchases compared to the amount of food that the cafeteria was serving. Like I said; just another day at the office. Although this was a pretty typical day, and the offices themselves were pretty typical, most of the people working there weren’t.
After I finished my sandwich and pretzels I checked my watch and discovered that I still had forty-five minutes left on my break, so I figured that might as well take a quick stroll down to the lounge. As I left my cubicle and made my way to the elevator I passed by a few plastic plants, and called for the elevator. Within a few seconds it had arrived empty, so without further ado I stepped in, dialed for the first floor and took a bite of my apple. The elevator itself was a color that resembled vomit mixed with rotting flesh, and the smell of smoke filled my nostrils despite the no-smoking policy we had. Soon enough the elevator arrived on the ground floor and it was only a short walk to the much revered lounge.
I strode through the impressive and medieval looking doors and entered the lounge. If there was one room that stood out from the others in the building, it was the lounge. Upon entrance to my right side was a five foot pit in which five wide screened televisions had been arranged in a pentagon, each surrounded by couches, and each with its own DVD players, video game consoles, and high quality speakers. Farther down on the right was a pool table, some card tables, and a dartboard. Off to my left was a set of pop machines, a jukebox, and a ping pong table just a bit farther down. And down at the opposite side of the lounge was yet another series of impressive doors, those leading to the library.
“I can’t believe that Pecos took away my license to kill!” Exclaimed a red faced and clearly distraught Agent Knight as I walked toward the television pit. It seemed that the director had finally done something about Knight’s itchy trigger finger which had caused Agent Grifter to go into the private sector after an incident involving a rabbit and a tractor.
“Well, you do have an interesting to view to kill.” Remarked his more experienced partner, Agent Duran.
Deciding that I didn’t want to be caught up in their discussion, I hopped on to an empty couch in the TV area. To my right I could see that Agents Wincal, Stars, Rhodes and Prophet were engaged in a game of Halo 2 that seemed to be getting pretty intense. Just by watching five seconds of their match I could see exactly why they were the leading members of the assault team. Off to the left Agent Khan was playing Dead Rising as Agent Sinclaire watched while eating a slice of toast. Deciding that I was up for some fight club, I popped Super Smash Bros. Melee into the Gamecube, hit the power, and put the TV to the proper channel. Once I had skipped by the opening, Agent Len came over, grabbed a controller and plopped down on the couch next to me.
“So what’s happening comrade?” Asked Len as he adjusted himself into the seat while I setup a stock match in the game.
“I heard that Elle finally gave Ash what he had coming.” Responded Tron as he selected Mario in the game while I selected Mr. Game & Watch.
“Restraining order?” I asked.
“Fist to face.” He replied as he selected Mario as his in-game character.
“It’s about time. Although I was hoping to see McGovney induce what medical textbooks call canadastickupassitis.” I said as I hit the start button and picked the Temple level to start the match. And with that we played a few good matches, Len won most of them but it was still good to blow off some steam from all the paperwork. As of then paperwork was about all I was doing, field work was going though a dry spell. Of course that was all about to change for me.
“Agent Miller and Agent Reeve to Dr. Pecos’ office immediately. Agent Miller and Reeve to Dr. Pecos’ office A-S-A-P.” Announced Irene over the building’s PA system with a voice that made you feel more insignificant than one of Stu’s empty beer cans. Upon hearing that I put down my controller, got up from the couch, and left the system to Len as I walked off towards the doors, all while wondering what the agency director wanted.
“Hopefully it’ll be an actual mission with some actual action this time.” I muttered to myself on my way to the office.
Once I’d taken the elevator to the fifth floor I walked past a few offices, including that of the eccentric Dr. Bedlam, and spied the director’s office at the end. With large mahogany doors and Irene sitting at her desk out front. She had a face that made your average burn victim look cute, and she wore a greenish-gray dress that could easily get a person stoned for wearing in public.
“Do you have an appointment?” She asked as I walked up to the doors leading into the boss’s office. It seemed that she either didn’t like me, or had no idea who I was; or both.
“Uh… yeah… I’m Agent Miller…” I answered modestly.
“Alright then, move along.” Responded Irene in a nightmare inducing voice as I grabbed the handle of one of the doors.
When I entered the office of Dr. Pecos I found him sitting on the opposite side of a large mahogany desk that matched the doors. All around the room were book cases, except behind the desk where the director had an impressive view of the courtyard. As if the office wasn’t impressive enough in such an agency as under funded as ours, the director carried an air of excellence and dignity, the kind carried by few people anymore. Despite being older than anyone else in the building or the entire agency for that matter he still looked even sharper than the sword he had on display on a bookcase to my right.
“So John, let’s say you’re taking a walk down the beach at night when all of a sudden a vampire with a bloodlust surprise’s you. What would you do?” He asked as I walked towards his desk to take a seat. That was something I should’ve expected, Pecos often greeted his agents with a pop quiz to keep them sharp
“Challenge it to a game of volleyball?” I answered, hoping that I’d get points for creativity to compensate for my lack of educated guess.
“Probably not a good idea considering the athletic ability granted by a vampire’s higher portions of fast twitch muscles. Your best bet would have been to run out into the water and swim away since the lower temperatures would probably discourage a vampire from chasing you.”
“Well it’s not like I even like volleyball, had a bad experience in middle school gym class. So I guess that swimming might be a better idea, although I can’t imagine why I’d be taking a long walk on the beach at night anyway. It’s not as if I’m making a profile for a dating site here.”
“Well at least that’s one favor you’ve done for the women of the world.” Said a voice from behind. Turning around to see who it was I discovered it to be Agent Reeve. A woman of 26 years of age, with long dark hair with grey eyes, she was about 5’6 which put her four inches shorter than I was, but she could easily hold her own in nearly any situation as she’d proved in a few bar fights. She had a reputation for being cold hearted, intelligent, nit picky, impatient, and a tad bit violent at times. In conclusion, working with Morgan Reeve was a bit like getting married.
“Glad to see you too captain.” I replied, knowing she hated the references to a certain brand of rum.
“So Morgan, what place did the zombie come in during the marathon?” Interrupted Dr. Pecos, knowing that it was time to break up the argument between me and Reeve before it even got started.
“I wasn’t aware that a zombie could fill out the admissions process to enter a marathon. Much less compete without attempting to eat one of the other contestants or spectators. So I’d say a zombie would not place at all.” Answered Morgan in a matter-of-fact manner that came with the rest of her self confident attitude.
“That’s the kind of answer I’d expect from a textbook writer. The answer was dead last.” Revealed Dr. Pecos with a grin on his face. It wasn’t a very good joke, but I found it to be pretty funny so I let out a chuckle and felt a bit better as the tension died down.
“Riiight then. Now I trust that you didn’t call us down here to crack zombie jokes did you?” Asked Morgan.
“Well you at least got that bit correct. I called the two of you down here to brief you on a field assignment which you two will be working together on.” Announced Dr. Pecos, switching into professional gear. Although both Morgan and I were pretty stoked about finally getting to do some field work we weren’t happy about working together.
The director continued. “It just so happens that we’ve got a bit of a situation brewing in rural northern Illinois, not too far from the Chicago suburbs. Throughout an area stretching from around the Rock River to the Fox River there’s been a lot of suspicious activity since the beginning of August. In particular there’s been over thirty reported disappearances, three unidentified skeletons were found in a river, numerous reports of livestock gone missing in the farmland, and reports of strange behavior coming from the mental asylum in the city of Elgin. At first glance it appears to be a severe vampire infestation, but the skeletons that were found along with some of the patients at the insane asylum are consistent with a zombie problem while some patients being treated are exhibiting symptoms of vampirism. Needless to say this is quite a pickle we’re in seeing as we’re not entirely sure what we’re up against.”
“Sure does sound like an interesting situation. Any possibility that we’re dealing with both kinds of boogey men at once?” I suggested.
“That sounds pretty unlikely, cases of vampires and zombies in the same area at once became almost unheard of by the 50’s. My bet is that it’s some pretty crafty vampires.” Commented Morgan.
“Sadly there isn’t really much we can do to tell for sure until the two of you investigate the matter further. But let’s consider the clues in favor of both groups. The disappearances suggest it’s vampires since zombies usually don’t go far, also the sheer amount of rural territory covered suggests vampires. In favor of zombies are the skeletons; vampires don’t eat the flesh so it seems likely that zombies are involved. But probably the most disturbing part is the fact that symptoms of both conditions are appearing in different patients at the same mental institution, and at least one patient exhibiting signs of both at once. Although I’m going to give you two a lot of freedom of choice on this one I’d recommend checking out the patients at the asylum in Elgin, which should tell you if it’s one or the other or both.” Explained Dr. Pecos.
“Just out of curiosity, this case sounds like it could get out of hand pretty quickly if we let it. So why just send the two of us? It’s not like we’ve got a shortage of agents at the moment.” I asked the director.
Dr. Pecos simply sighed and with a remorseful look explained why only two of us were being sent. “I’m sorry to admit this but there’s a lot of politics involved. It just so happens that you’ll mostly be operating in the district represented by the current speaker of the house and it’s a midterm election year. Seeing as no matter how the election turns out he’ll be in that position until at least next year we’re under a lot of pressure not to cause any sort of panic. So we’re under pressure from a lot of very important people in some very high place’s to keep this quiet. And as much as you know I don’t like getting political we can’t afford to make any enemies, at least not until we can prove ourselves. That’s where the two of you come in. Reeve, you’re one of the best agents we have. And Miller, you’re also one of the best but more importantly you know the area.”
I hated when politics got in the way of my job. The problem was Pecos was right as usual. We couldn’t afford to cause any sort of panic within the public, but this was indeed our chance to shine. Nonetheless I didn’t like the idea of only two agents having to cover an infestation of this magnitude.
“Sir, I think it will look even worse if this gets out of hand while we have the chance to put this down now. Two agents is far too few to handle this entire case.” Protested Morgan.
Dr. Pecos gave a quick smile and answered with an explanation that sounded like one that could come from your own grandfather. “This is why you won’t be alone. I’m only sending the two of you out there for the investigation. But it just so happens that I’m going to have the assault team put on indefinite standby. They’ll be on the scene in less than twelve hours after they get the call. Also it just so happens that Agent West is already near the area on a long term assignment working with the Chicago Police Department. He’ll be giving you various means of assistance when you need it, including access to a lot of his contacts in the area.”
“Well… that’s a little better…” I said, still not quite satisfied.
“I’m sorry lady and gentlemen, but we don’t have a lot of agents that we can work with. But continuing with the briefing; you’re going to be going on a bit of a road trip. Tomorrow I want the two of you to take Miller’s Jeep out there and then check into the Harbor Inn in the town of DeKalb, and then start your investigation the next day. I’m giving you each general level 2 weapons clearance, so take what you want from that section of the armory. Also I’m giving Miller level 4 access to an M1928 while Reeve gets level 4 access to a Remington 700.” Explained Dr. Pecos.
Agent Reeve gave a sadistic smile upon hearing that she’d get to use one of the agencies sniper rifles. There was no doubt she was one of the best snipers we had. After all she was a superb sharpshooter and was one of only nine Shadows in the entire agency. And believe me, to be a Shadow you had to be capable of sneaking up on vampires, and that’s no small feat.
As for me, I was an investigator who was also assault team qualified, which usually meant I got to clean up whatever mess I found. I didn’t get paid a whole lot extra considering that my membership with assault was classified as part-time, but at least working part-time on assault got me out of working on the hazmat crew that had to clean up after we finished busting what goes bump in the night. That duty was usually given to the investigators who hung back during the assault, and all I can say about that is I’m glad I went and became assault qualified because the overtime pay was nothing less than pitiful.
“Wait a minute, you’re saying that I have to spend the whole day on the road with her?” I exclaimed in shock.
“The two of you need to get to know each other a bit better if you’re going to successfully complete this mission. I really don’t wouldn’t want to have to send out Duran and Knight because my two agents assigned to the case couldn’t get along.” Said Dr. Pecos in a voice that had suddenly turned a bit more serious.
“Yes sir. But we do get separate hotel rooms, right?” Asked Morgan.
“Sorry, but we could only get one room.” Replied Pecos.
“Two beds?” I questioned, hopeful that I wouldn’t have to sleep on the floor.
“Of course. I couldn’t have you having to share a bed, and you’ll need to be well rested for each day so sleeping on the floor wouldn’t do. And with that best of luck on your mission, and try not to become zombie food or a vampire’s drink.” Said the boss.
“Thank you sir.” Said Morgan and I simaltaneosly as we got out of our seats and walked out the doors.
It was going to be a long day the next day, I had no doubt about it.
A bit disappointed by the prospect of having to work back in what I considered the dullest part of the nation right behind Idaho, it was at least nice that I’d be given some fieldwork. Even if it was widely rumored over at the watercooler that my partner for this little game of undead Clue was descended from Vlad the Impaler it was still fieldwork. Needless to say this was much more exciting than the typical paperwork that I was assigned to process when in the office. Especially since all the fun letters from gothic attention whores tended to get diverted over to Agent Fox.
The next day I was awoken by the ear splitting sound of my alarm clock going off at five in the morning. Like any good American I hit the snooze button while murmuring something about five minutes before dragging myself out of bed. As per routine, I got my shower, made a mental note to tell the landlord to fix the furnace, got dressed, grabbed my briefcase, and ate some Lucky Charms before driving to work. The drive to the office was pretty routine, with the road rage and such. On the way to work I listened to some of the Beatles, getting some odd looks from a bus full of 8th graders on a field trip to the capital city as they saw me singing Lady Madonna. Kids really have absolutely no appreciation for good music.
When I got to work the skies were clear and the sun shone through without obstruction. This would have cheered up the majority of people; however since I was going to be driving for the rest of the day on the highway this angered me. I was no vampire, but sunlight wasn’t exactly a favorite of mine. You could say that I usually worked the graveyard shift.
Arriving at work at about seven I parked my car in its spot near the edge of the lot, far from the nice convenient spot up near the front where the head honcho’s parked. As I walked towards the building I wondered why we couldn’t take Reeve’s Mustang, which I know she had to have stolen from a dead victim; shadows couldn’t be getting that much more. Walking down the rows of cars I entered the front doors to find Irene at the receptionist’s desk with her trademark scowl and a stare that triggered a freeze or flight response from just about everybody. The strong typically fled while the weak would freeze up. Legend has it that Irene was hired because that stare could be used to root out those who could handle things like zombies vs. those who couldn’t. After a quick sign in where I was careful to avoid eye contact like in public transit I went directly to the armory to pick up the equipment for the mission.
The armory was downstairs in the basement, right next to the laundry room and holding cells, for better or for worse. Walking past a washing machine that I wish I could say was actually a high tech nuclear laser containment field of some sort, I opened the door to the armory, which oddly enough was frequently mistaken for a supply closet. Inside I found Agent Gummer behind his desk watching Lord of War on the television set that had been acquired with some creative accounting, labeling it as a “counter-terrorism video communications device”; it was downright amazing what you could obtain by labeling it as “counter-terrorism”, even if we dealt with something completely different. All around the room were gun lockers with labels designating various weapons, and equipment within at least level 3. Through a door behind the desk was the level four stuff. However this one required a keycard and a password to get into
“Hey John, Pecos said you’d be needing some gear so I already had it sent upstairs to the lobby.” Said Gummer as he turned away from his movie when he heard me walk in.
“Huh, Irene didn’t say anything when I signed in.” I said puzzled
“Well I packed Agent Reeve’s stuff in there too, so maybe she already got here and picked it up.”
“She’s a bit obsessive about sniper rifles. More than the surgeon general recommends at least.”
“Yeah but keep in mind the surgeon general has some pretty odd connections with the Federal Reserve, and Morgan is one of the top shooters in the agency.”
“I’ll at least agree with you that she’s one of the best shooters. Kind of makes me wonder who would win in a sniper duel between her and Rhodes. However I know what you’re thinking about the Federal Reserve and I’ve got to say the evidence is compelling that it was the KGB that killed Kennedy.”
“It was all just a setup to make it look like the KGB.”
“Next you’re going to tell me we never landed on the moon.”
“The evide-“ began Gummer before I cut him off.
“Another time mate. But I think I’d best go off and figure out where Reeve is with those weapons.” I said as I walked towards the door, realizing that Gummer was slipping into a state of paranoia again.
“Alright, see you around. Oh and when you get the weapons, don’t cross the streams.” Gummer said as I was leaving.
A minute later I was upstairs again in the lobby looking to see where the hell Agent Reeve had gone. Wondering if she had even come in I checked out the sign-in list for the day and confirmed that Reeve had been in the building for at least an hour. The only problem was finding her. Just what I needed, a hunt for my partner at seven in the morning.
Deciding that the lounge was the best place to start I made my way into the hallways, and to the grandiose doors leading to the lounge. Once inside the shrine to sloth I found that only a few others were inside. Agent Sinclair was eating a piece of toast with what appeared to be a bit of soap on top of it. Next to her was Lishuss from the IT department eating some cheese doodles. And Glen from accounting was moving a couch around under McGovney’s supervision. Kind of figured that Reeve wouldn’t be in the lounge, but since I was there I grabbed a donut before I left for the fourth floor, the realm of Agent Fox.
Once I made my way to the elevator I dialed in for the fourth floor, the color of the elevator still sickening as ever made me begin to doubt Doctor Bedlam ever got funding for his zombie janitor project. When the elevator reached the second floor the doors opened up to the sight of the token Scottish guy.
“Isn’t it a little early to be drinking Stu?” I asked as he walked in with a bottle of whiskey in hand.
“Fuck no! It’s fucking never too fucking early for a fucking drink!” He responded in a thick accent. It kind of made me wonder if Britain’s VIB had really sent us one of their best for this exchange program. But then again Stu did score 4th place at the previous week’s shooting contest; after three beers, a bottle of whiskey, and more shots of vodka than most people can count after they’ve drank that much.
“Well in that case carry on cunt.” I said, realizing that trying to stop Stu from drinking was a little bit like trying to assault an insane asylum with a banana.
By the time we time we reached the fourth floor Stu had drank enough to knock out a fully grown water buffalo, and oddly enough he stayed on the elevator, suggesting that he was off to the top floor for some reason. That or he just enjoyed elevators. Stepping off the elevator, I walked to Reeve’s cubicle to find no one was there. Deciding that she might be in Fox’s office I walked over to see if she was there. When I got to his office I took note of the counter that read how many times he’d said “fuck” so far that day, and unsurprisingly he’d already topped the South Park movie. Walking into his office I found him writing a report on the dangers of vampire wanna-bes while singing along to Love Me Do.
“Oh hi John, you must be looking for Reeve.” He said as he abruptly stopped singing when he saw me. I got the feeling he’d probably impale me if complimented his singing voice.
“Yeah, I don’t suppose you’ve seen her, have you?” I inquired.
“She just left to go start loading equipment into your Jeep.”
“Eh, too bad for her, it’s locked.”
“Yeah but when’s that stopped her?”
“Fuck, you’re right.”
“Now that’s my language. But since you’re here I suppose I should give you a head’s up on your mission. There’s been an unsubstantiated report suggesting that the Order might have setup shop in Chicago, so I’d be careful.”
“Huh, they must be trying to bring some of the Windy City’s vampire packs into the fold. I’ve heard the packs on the south side are just downright vicious, even for vampires.”
“Sure are. Anyhow good luck Miller.”
“Will do.” I said as I walked out.
After working my way back to the elevator, I took it downstairs, Stu still inside drinking and now smoking beneath the obligatory no smoking sign. When I got to the first floor I walked out to the lobby, past Irene’s stare of death, and out to the parking lot. As I was walking past the garage something caught my eye, my Jeep. Which was odd since I parked it in the parking lot towards the end. Walking inside I confirmed it was indeed mine, and saw Reeve standing by the trunk.
“How the hell did you get this in here? I didn’t even leave it in neutral.” I said, extremely curious as to how one moves an SUV so far without the keys to it.
“With these.” Said Reeve as she pulled my car keys out of her pocket.
“How did you get those?” I asked, incredulous as she had apparently stolen my keys.
“Wouldn’t you like to know.”
“Yeah I sort of would. But at least I won’t be needing to worry about drinking and driving if you’re going to keep stealing my keys like that.”
“Too bad. The gear’s already been loaded, now let’s get going.” Said Reeve as she tossed my keys back.
"Damn kleptos" I muttered as I got into the driver’s seat, and she got in the passengers seat I stuck the keys in the ignition, and started the car. Eager to hit the road to get it over with, I popped in a cassette tape with music by the Bus Boys, turned on the siren, put the vehicle in drive and floored it. Dr. Pecos was sure to grill me for that if he found out I was using the siren just to get out of a parking lot, but I had some busting to do.
With a stinging sensation that would put any nun to shame, I awoke with a painful sensation on my side. As I turned over to investigate the source of the pain I came face to face with Agent Morgan Reeve standing next to my bed fully dressed and ready, tazer in hand. That explained a lot about the pain in my side.
“Did you just use a tazer to wake me up?” I asked sleepily, still a bit groggy despite the jolt of electricity.
“No, I used a slice of fried gold.” Replied Reeve sarcastically.
It was sometime early in that same Saturday morning that we finally made it to our destination. Overall the road trip had been a bit less than pleasant, thanks in part to Reeve’s tendencies to commandeer the radio and play back seat driver. Aside from that there was the never ending construction.
By the time we reached DeKalb it was quite clear that the quicker we got the job done the better. I was sleepy, and Agent Reeve wasn’t helping at all with her constant nagging. Once we got to our hotel we checked in and made our way to room twenty-three. Wasting no time I was quickly in bed, not wanting to waste any time on things like work or more of my partner referring to Lynrd Skynrd as “white trash with a record deal”. To think that I’d be woken up with a tazer for the high crime of catching some shut eye.
“Who the hell use’s a tazer to wake up their co-worker while on an assignment? There is an alarm clock in here.” I asked, getting more irritated by the second as I woke up.
“Well then maybe you should set it before you go to bed.”
“Or maybe you could just nudge me instead of using a potentially lethal weapon.”
“Where’s the fun in that?”
“The fun would’ve been me not sticking your fingers in cold water tonight.” I said threatening her with a classic overnight prank I said as I got out of bed. Realizing that I’d probably have a hard time interviewing locals in my boxer shorts I went over to my suitcase and unpacked a set of clothes for the day and headed into the bathroom to change. The bathroom itself looked something like one you would find in a North Korean Happytime Fun Camp, with mold growing in some unusual places, and a mysterious dark red splotch on the wall. I’m not entirely sure of how I made it through the shower without being devoured by one of several particularly large spiders that made the movie Eight Legged Freaks look like a Disney movie. After showering, brushing my teeth and then dressing I walked out of the bathroom and out into the room where I discovered that Reeve was fiddling with a set of weapons.
Where as my M1911 was modified as a longslide, thus granting it a longer barrel, Reeve’s was equipped with a silencer for her typical stealthy methods. The contrast was quite clear as crystal. This could of course lead to an awesome tag team resulting in some kind of synergy or whatever marketers were calling it, or it could result in crash and burn conflict of interests. Just as long as it didn’t turn into one of those stereotypical old school white cop meets street smart black cop situations. Those tended to end pretty badly for everyone involved, particularly the viewer.
“It’s about time you got ready.” Said Reeve impatiently.
“Yeah, yeah, hold your horses. It’s eight in the mornin’, I doubt we’ve got to worry about too much going on at this time.” I replied as I straightened my tie.
“Still no reason to waste any time. I looked over the case file and so we’ve got a lot of ground to cover. The intel says that the last reported suspicious incident happened at a plant nursery on Route 72. Apparently a car broke down, pulled over, but the driver never returned. And the police that are investigating still don’t know if there were any passengers. So I think we should head over to check it out.” Explained Reeve.
“Huh, anymore info on it?
“None whatsoever. The police only sent us that brief summary.”
“You know what that means.”
“We should place a request for more information.”
“Nope. It means it’s time for us to get some breakfast.” I said as I grabbed the car keys, and holstered my weapon.
A bit less than an hour later we were walking into a small restaurant known as the Corner. It was a cozy place that seated about twenty people, and could be mistaken for a lot of other diners across America. As was typical for this particular place on a Saturday, it was packed with locals out for a good breakfast. The smell of bacon saturated the air, and the cholesterol being served was more lethal than anything we usually dealt with. In this particular place I stood out a bit. With a blue collared shirt, black slacks, a bowler hat and aviator sunglasses on I was a bit different from the typical farmer or local citizen dressed casually in the place. Reeve was simply wearing a long sleeved black shirt with black jeans, dressed almost like a plain site ninja.
But we were in luck, a pair of workers from the nursery down the road where the mysterious car breakdown had occurred. And what they left behind was a pair of seats at the counter. Sitting right next to those seats was a police officer whom we’d need information from, but more importantly I was hungry for some bacon and French toast. As we took our seats a waitress of about twenty years of age asked us for our drink orders. I myself ordered a coke while Reeve ordered a glass of orange juice. While the waitress scuttled off to attend to other patrons and get our drinks I turned to the police officer and noticed he was from the town of Hampshire according to his badge.
“Hey officer, any luck with that disappearance with the car breakdown?” I asked the police officer, hoping that I could get some more information on what we were investigating.
The officer turned to me and answered “We know that the driver was Dr. Morrison’s kid, Brad I think his name was. And we also confirmed the disappearance of his supposed girlfriend, some junior girl named Yvonne Sieve. A real shame, Morrison’s kid was the class vice-president, and that girl Yvonne was apparently the top student editor for the school paper.”
“That sure is a real shame. Kind of make’s me wonder what could of happened to them. Really, to break down and then disappear so close to town is pretty weird.” I replied, wondering what the police thought was going on.
“No kidding. With cell phones these days it makes me wonder why they wouldn’t have just called for help.”
“So they didn’t even call?”
“Nope, we checked the cell phone company’s records and came up with nothing.”
“Now that’s odd. So what caused the car to break down?”
“Well it wasn’t a break down actually, that’s just what the paper was saying. Somebody misquoted somebody and tire blowout turned into car breaking down.”
“Ah, that make’s a lot more sense I suppose.”
“It does.” Said the police officer just as he ate the last bit of his eggs.
“Well best of luck in figuring out what happened.” I said to the officer.
“Thanks. It’s been a pleasure talking to you but I suppose I’d better get back on duty before people start saying I’ve been spending all my time eating.”
“Same to you.” I said as the officer got up to pay his bill.
It wasn’t too long before the waitress came over with our drinks and took our food orders. I chose bacon with French toast while Reeve being more health conscious than I was simply ordered an omlette. When the food came it was most delicious. Probably not entirely FDA approved, but it tasted good and that was all that mattered. After all, when chasing vampires and zombies for a living your life expectancy does tend to shorten considerably.
“So are we going to go investigate or not?” Questioned Reeve.
“Incase you weren’t listening, I just identified the driver and
passenger. So while I was gathering info on suspicious events I take it you were processing that information to come up with a plan?” I questioned back.
“We should check out the car and the site where it blew out it’s tire.” Said Reeve.
“Uh huh. Despite the fact that any evidence in the nursery would’ve been removed by now, and the car’s been towed.” I commented.
“As if you’ve got any better ideas.” Quipped Reeve.
“I say we find ourselves a new lead. Because this one’s cold for the time being.” I replied.
“Fine, you can go find yourself a new lead. But I’m going to investigate the site.” Said Reeve, clearly unsatisfied with my investigative plan.
“Suit yourself.” I answered just before chomping down my last piece of bacon.
The sun was setting and neither me nor Reeve had found anything after interviewing the nursery workers. Pulling out the cell phone that I hated so much I looked its address book and found Agent West’s number. I got the feeling that he might have some ideas. I called his number and got an answer.
“This is Agent West here. What can I do for you Miller?”
“How the hell did you know who this is?”
“Phones come with caller ID these days.”
“So what can I do for you?”
“I was wondering if you had any ideas on this case I’m working on.”
“Well it all started around the same time vampire cases in the city started getting weird. Tell you what, meet me at Mario’s, we might be able to help each other out.”
“See you there then.”
After gathering Reeve from what she was investigating we headed up north and across I-90 to Luigi’s, a restaurant serving some of the best pizza you could get outside of the city. Once their we parked in one of the public parking spaces of downtown Huntley and made our way to the pizzeria, passing a rather nice looking motorcycle on the way.
Inside I noticed a picture of Mario himself eating pizza with a who’s jacket had the FVZA insignia dated December 23rd, 1960. Ever since the job that agent had done, Mario’s served FVZA agents on the house. It wasn’t too difficult to spot Agent West, all I had to do was look for a guy wearing a leather jacket. Reeve and I took our seats in the booth West had been sitting at.
“So how’s it going?” I asked West.
“Good, good. The two of you?” He answered.
“We’d be better if Miller here knew how to speak Spanish.” Said Reeve in an irritated tone.
“Well maybe if you weren’t so outspoken about the nursery’s use of illegal immigrants they would’ve been more willing to talk.” I replied to Reeve’s attack on my foreign language skills.
“And I see that the two of you work as well together as ever.” Interjected West.
“You know it. So you mentioned that vampire cases have gotten weird in the city, what’s going on exactly?” I asked.
“All of a sudden they seem a lot more coordinated. People are still going missing, but we’re not finding what’s happening to these people. It’s as if the vampires decided to start cleaning their messes. Which happens occasionally within individual packs, but this is happening all over the city. Even the demographics of the victims is changing, now we’re seeing a lot more able bodied young people going missing.”
“How can you be sure it’s vampires though? Isn’t it possible that a serial killer has started doing his work? After all, Chicago vampire packs had already been extremely discreet after the camera’s were put up.” Questioned Reeve; always the skeptic of the conclusion that wasn’t her own.
“That’s what I thought at first, but then I started seeing that multiple people were vanishing from different parts of the city in one night. It’s not so much that they’re clean, it’s that they all do their grocery shopping within a few hours of each other.” Commented West.
“Hmm… what if they’re taking the L?” I asked.
“There’s no way the L is fast enough to let a single person take fifteen people in the span of what seems to be about an hour from places like Meig’s Field to Wrigleyville. I just don’t see one person being able to do it without leaving a mess.” Said West.
“Well Fox mentioned that intelligence suggested that the Order might’ve finally setup shop in Chicago.” I suggested.
“It would make sense, the Windy City packs are well known for their brutality and effectiveness. Meaning for an outside force to bring them in line it’d have to be a very strong group.” Reasoned Reeve.
“Sounds like a reasonable conclusion.” Said West as without warning he drew his handgun and fired three rounds between Reeve and myself in one smooth motion. I was somewhat stunned at this seemingly random outburst of firepower.
I looked to my right and noticed that Reeve was as surprised as I was, a rare occurrence. Looking behind me to see what Agent West had fire upon I saw a woman wearing a long sleeved shirt, sunglasses, and had a silenced handgun in her clutches on the table. Also featured were three bullet holes, two across the chest, one right in the forehead.
“Nice shooting mate. Now let’s go take a closer look at our mysterious would-be attacker.” I said as the three of us got up out of our seats and walked over to the corpse that was sitting perfectly in her seat. Upon getting closer I pulled out my notepad and took note of a few things. She was using a .22 Mark III handgun, a relatively common but reliable weapon. Also noticeable was pale, somewhat translucent skin and dilated eyes. The blood coming out her wounds also appeared to be black in color. Upon pulling up her sleeves I discovered a branding resembling a chicken footprint on her forearm. There was no doubt that a vampire had just tried to kill us, and she was a part of the Order of the Broken Cross.
Formed back in 1935, the Order of the Broken Cross was one of the most feared organizations known to the world. Unfortunately for the FVZA, they’d frequently strike close to home at family members if they couldn’t hit the agents. Luckily they were almost all dead by the 1960’s. However when the FVZA reformed in 2004, so did the Order of the Broken Cross.
“No doubt she was working for the Order, and judging by her silenced weapon I’d guess she’s one of their Nightmares.” I commented. Within the Order of the Broken Cross there were different classes of vampires. There were your typical grunts, they were essentially jack of all trades cannon fodder for the Order. Next up was the Hunter-Killers (often known as HK’s), they were well trained for combat and were a lot like our assault squads, so something like a SWAT team of vampires. Then there were the Nightmares, they were the stealthiest of the whole Order and were often used for recon, sniping, and general cloak and dagger stuff. Finally there were the Alpha’s, much like the alpha’s of your typical vampire pack, they were the leaders, and as a result were usually the best armed and best trained in the whole Order.
“I’m not so sure about that. I’ve never seen a Nightmare operate in plain sight like that without support…” Figured West. As he said that we all realized that if he did indeed just kill a Nightmare it meant that there were definitely more hostiles around.
“Let’s get going to the Jeep, there’s heavier weaponry in the trunk.” Said Reeve, clearly realizing that we were in for a fight as we all drew our handguns.
“Sounds good, I say we walk right out the front door.” I suggested.
“That’s a stupid idea, we’re taking the back.” Replied Reeve.
“That’s what they’ll be expecting. They’ve probably got a sniper covering the back door along with an HK for good measure.” I said.
“They’ll have a sniper covering the front too.” Said Reeve as she raised her voice.
“If they did the probably would’ve shot us through the window by now.” I said, staying calm.
“Miller’s probably right. And if there is a sniper covering the front we’ll have to go through its killzone to get to the vehicles anyway.” Interjected West.
“Ok then, I guess I’ll follow you two idiots out the front door.” Said Reeve.
As the three of us made our way to the door the situation was more tense than a Mexican standoff. As it was my idea to go out the front, I went out the door first. Thus far my cranium felt intact, and as the other three stepped out none of them took a bullet to the skull. So it seemed that we weren’t under attack by a sniper, which was of course a good sign. We crossed the street and began walking through the row of cars towards the Jeep.
“DUCK BITCHES!” Shouted a blond haired vampire as he popped out from behind a Honda Element; shotgun in hand.
As he raised the boomstick with one hand so as to hold it like a handgun. A split second before he pulled the trigger myself, Reeve, and West dived out of the way. With a loud roar the shotgun fired, missing us agents but blowing the windows out of a Honda Civic across the street.
Reeve was the first one back on her feet and she didn’t waste anytime grabbing the shotgun out of the vampire’s hand, turning it around, pumping another round, and blasting the unlucky vampire in the chest. The shot from the gun knocked him to the ground, and the rest of us used this time to run for the Jeep.
Once at our vehicle I popped open the back end and grabbed the Remington shotgun with some ammunition. Reeve handed the shotgun she’d captured over to West and grabbed the Winchester 1894 out of the Jeep. Now that we were properly armed, the fight might be evened out a bit. But a straight up fight there wasn’t going to be. Suddenly a pair of vampires leapt out of the bushes and leapt on to a pair of motorcycles, started their engines and took off down Main Street.
Without warning Agent West tossed his shotgun back into the Jeep and ran for his motorcycle. In moments he was on his bike tearing after the vampires. Figuring that it’d be a bad idea to let him take them himself I hopped in the Jeep, started the engine and took off the second that Reeve was in her seat. I saw the vampires and West turn left on to Route 47, and we followed them. Deciding that this would be the appropriate time, I hit the siren and put the pedal to the metal.
Closing in at about 70mph this chase was getting pretty fast and didn’t show any sign of slowing down. As the motorcycles ahead swerved around cars at high speed we were able to go down the center of the road thanks to cars pulling off for our siren and flashing lights. Soon we approached a stretch of straight, flat road that went by the retirement homes development, this was where the Jeep surpassed 85mph, thus going faster than the speedometer would read.
As we approached the bridge up ahead that went across I-90 we saw the vampires split up. One of them took the west bound exit on to the highway, going straight into the traffic. And that just had to be the one Agent West would follow. The other vampire continued south and turned on to the east bound enterence. This meant all the motorcycles were going the same direction, the problem was that the only friendly one was going against traffic without sirens and flashing lights.
“Miller I want you to stop on the bridge. Now!” Ordered Agent Reeve, apparently she either was giving up or had a plan. And the former had never happened before.
Obeying her command I slammed on the brakes and stopped on the bridge. She quickly hopped out of the car, ran around to the driver’s side and raised her rifle looking east. Not wanting to miss out, I got out of the car and looked on. She’d already begun steadying her rifle against the bridge’s guard and was focusing on her target.
“Damnit, I don’t think I can make this shot. He’s moving too fast and I’m not lined up with him.” Reeve said quietly as she continued looking down the scope of her Winchester 1894.
“Just give it your best.” I said, realizing how difficult of a shot it’d be.
“I don’t want to hit an innocent…. Or do I…” Replied Reeve, now with a slight smile. It seemed that she’d just gotten an idea. I doubted I’d be able to see her hit a vampire on a motorcycle now that the target was at least half a kilometer away, but I did get to see what she was really targeting.
As was her routine, she took one deep breath, exhaled, and squeezed the trigger with the rifle steady. The crack of the rifle pierced even the sound of the traffic underneath us, and the bullet was away. Despite how far away it was, it’s hard to miss the effects of a rifle hitting a tire on a semi-truck. The front wheel of a large Wal-Mart truck exploded with a bang and the semi swerved to the left, causing the incoming motorcycle being driven by a vampire to get splattered across the side of the truck. That was one down.
But before we had the time to celebrate a black van came up from the south and stopped right behind the Jeep. Knowing that there were probably vampires in there I drew my M1911, but before I could even get the safety off a group of HK’s had popped out with shotguns and opened fire. I took a shot directly to the chest and everything started to go black. The last thing I saw was Reeve getting hit and falling over the side of the bridge.
There I was several hours later, sitting on a cold steel folding chair with my wrists and ankles bound. The room was dimly lit, but I could see large bloodstains on each of the concrete walls and the floor. In one corner was a skeleton with gnaw marks on the bones and a cracked open skull. I got the feeling that whoever that skeleton belonged to didn’t die of boredom, and I doubted that the person died of snoo-snoo either.
“Hmm, must’ve been rubber buckshot. That’d explain why I’m still alive, yet not in one of those ridiculous hospital gowns.” I muttered to myself, unsure of my location.
After a minute the door unlocked and opened, and a dark figure walked in. He pulled in a chair and placed it in front of me and took a seat. The man wore a fine suit with a red tie and a pair of leather gloves. His outfit immediately told me who it was, and when I saw his face it removed all doubt about who it could possibly be.
“So Sengir, we meet again.” I said to the infamous operative of the Order of the Broken Cross. Sengir as he was called now was one of the agency’s most wanted, and by far one of the most dangerous vampires to ever drink blood.
“That’s right John, we meet again. Only this time it seems that I’ve got you at a disadvantage.” Replied the vampire, calm as ever.
“I don’t suppose I could get you to monologue and tell me your secret plan while I escape, could I?” I asked, not exactly expecting mercy from Sengir.
“Tell you what, I’ll tell you the part of the plan that applies to you if you can tell me the square root of seventy-five thousand eight hundred fifty two.”
“Damnit, you know I’m about as good at math as Stephen Hawking is at running track.”
“Come on, be a good sport and actually try.”
“You never fail to use that as your universal mathematical guess do you?”
“Well there was that time in Vegas when I was playing the roulette wheel.”
“I think we both know that you’d never bet the answer to life, the universe, and everything on the devil’s game.”
“I think I can think of more evil games. Like baccarat, is it any wonder that the new Casino Royale movie is supposed to be switching over to Texas Hold’em?”
“And what makes baccarat so evil?”
“So is roulette. And it just so happens that if you add up all the numbers of a roulette wheel it adds up to 666. I’m guessing you didn’t know that.”
“Of course not. When I gamble I actually gamble, I don’t do a mathematical breakdown of my chances.”
“And that my friend is why you find yourself tied to a chair before me. You went in with nothing while I still have the aces.” Said my vampiric nemesis as he pulled out the Ace of Hearts and the Ace of Diamonds out from his pocket.
“Ah, pocket bloody aces. Just keep in mind my theatrical friend, that there’s three other aces.” I said, observing the pair of cards that he just withdrew.
“I believe you are mistaken, for there are only two others. The Ace of Clubs, and then the ever popular Ace of Spades.”
“But there’s also the fifth ace. The one that’s always up the other guy’s sleeve. It’s the ace that goes both ways, can complete any straight, can be any suite it wants, and also works as a get out of jail free card in monopoly, but you’ll never see it until it comes down to the point where everyone’s all in.”
“I’ll be honest John; for once you’ve got me at a loss as to what you’re talking about. I’m not aware of there being any fifth ace.”
“And that’s why you’ll never beat me.”
“I do believe that you’re quite beaten at the moment.”
“Tell you what; let’s settle this over a game of Russian roulette. We can use my pistol and I’ll even let you go first.”
“You should know that I know what happens when you don’t know what happens when you play Russian roulette with a semi-automatic.”
“How about you give me a reward for effort? You know, maybe a glass of water, a sandwich, my gun maybe? Hell, I don’t even smoke and I’d happily take a cigar right now. Come on? How about a hug at the least?”
“I’ll tell you what. I’ll give you the two other real aces before I watch you the hunter become the hunted.”
“I like that first part, although I’m not so sure that I like the sound of being a ghost in a game of Pac-Man.”
“If I had it my way it’d be a nice good old fashion duel between you and me. Two archrivals fighting once and for all to settle things. But the boss insists otherwise.” Said Sengir as he pulled out the Ace of Clubs and the Ace of Spades from his pocket and placed them in my own.
“So you’re not the boss of this mess eh? Guess you guys have got something pretty big going on if my nemesis Sengir is getting outranked. So do tell, who’s running this little op? I’m curious.”
“I think you’ll recognize her.” Replied Sengir as he got up from his seat, untied me from the chair and led me to the door with something sharp and metallic at my back.
As he led me through the door I found myself in a room similar to the one I was in, but larger and containing a cage reaching from the floor to the ceiling and about twenty feet large on each side. The bars were made from steel that had begun to rust, nearly the entire floor inside the cage was stained with blood and a couple rat carcasses were scattered around the blood stained concrete.
“So, where’s this boss of yours? Where’s the rest of your friends for that matter?” I inquired towards Sengir as I was lead over towards the cage.
“You’ll meet her soon enough.” Said the well dressed vampire while he opened the door to the cage and pushed me inside. He just as quickly closed and locked the door behind me. Before me on the floor were a machete, a rubber band, and a piece of string.
“Alright, now this is downright ridiculous. I thought you guys were trying to kill me, not do an episode of MacGyver here. I mean sure when this becomes its own television series I’d love to be played by Richard Dean Anderson, even though I think I look more like a younger Dan Aykroyd, but still that’s not the point. The point is that this has got to be the worst example of villany that I’ve seen since I watched Goldfinger.” I commented concerning the items that were before me.
This definitely wasn’t what I’d expected from the Order of the Broken Cross. This was an organization that had become infamous in the days of the old agency when they would behead agent’s family members and then impale said brain buckets outside an agency office. Such an organization of vampires was expected to be more vicious than placing a machete and assorted items before a captive. As Spock would say, it just wasn’t logical.
“Oh don’t worry John; we’ve got plenty in store for you. Infact here it is.” Said Sengir, gesturing towards the door that had begun to open.
When the door open I saw four figures enter the room. Three of them I could make out as probably being male vampires once they walked towards the lights surrounding the cage, yet the fourth one had a hood over it’s head. The three vampires were dragging the fourth and dragged it to the cage. They opened the door to the cage, tossed the fourth figure inside and took off its hood. Zombie. That’s what they had brought into the cage. I could tell by the rotting flesh of the face and the leathery skin that this was a genuine zombie. That caught my interest. The zed I now shared the cage with appeared to be have been a female of Hispanic origin, her age impossible to tell, and appeared to be middle of the road as far as fitness goes. That didn’t thrill me, but at least I wasn’t facing against a zombified Mr. T. The sheer awesomeness of Mr. T probably would’ve caused my face to melt from looking at the awesomeness for more than a split-second.
“Welcome to your own execution Agent Miller, I hope that Sengir has been accommodating. I’d be a shame if you were at all uncomfortable at the time of your death.” Said another voice coming from the doorway.
There stood a fifth figure, one whom I could not recognize with the lighting being as dim as it was. The figure walked closer and I could tell it was female, the closer she got I see her skin was a pale vampiric tone and didn’t appear to have a zombie gait. Just what I needed; another vampire to complicate things. And it didn’t help when she got close enough for me to recognize who it was.
Former director of the agencies vampire division turned vampire herself, she was a testament to the rumor that the position of overseeing the vampire division was cursed. Much like a defense against the dark arts teacher, none of our vampire directors seemed to last very long. Probably the only reason that Director Fox was surviving as long as he had been was the fact that he was notoriously brutal and good at his job and his infamous usage of a flaming cricket bat as a manner of discipline. Thus earning him the titles of the Dark One, Vlad the Spanker, Darkfox, and Fox the Carpathian. The last director, the one who had just entered however wasn’t so lucky. She had been taken on a particularly ill-fated mission known as Operation Viper Clearance. These days she went by the name Azlynn.
Cyber78 - May 19, 2007 10:45 PM (GMT)
“Aside from the manner in which I was brought here, Sengir has been pretty decent. But you know since it’s been such a long time, how about I let you buy me a coffee at the Corner. You know, catch up on things instead of watching me get eaten by this lovely lady you’ve got me sharing a cell with.” I said as I picked up the machete and prepared against the zombie before it figured out I was easier prey than the vampires outside the cage.
“Coffee at the Corner is free.” Said Azlynn.
“Well then in that case I’ll buy.” I replied, knowing full well that this wasn’t going anywhere productive.
“Can we get with this quickly? I’m missing a Eureka marathon on the Sci-Fi channel.” Interupted Sengir, clearly becoming impatient.
“Instead of watching me fight this zombie how about we all go watch that Eureka marathon. I never did get to find out if Henry stays in town or not.” I said, having missed the season finale due to a sudden call of duty a while back.
“I’m beginning to get agitated, and I’m thirsty.” Said Azlynn as she signaled everyone towards the door.
Upon her signal everyone silently left the room, but with a smirk on each of their faces. As soon as the door closed behind them, the zombie in the cage with me noticed a distinct lack of prey aside from myself. As it turned itself towards me I could see the flesh decaying on her face, with a hole in the cheek providing a view of the zombie’s teeth that would make most dentists cry in despair. It let out a terrible moan and began shuffling towards me.
I raised the machete provided for me in my right hand, and turned my left side towards the approaching bag of decaying flesh. The plan was nothing more than a simple, routine, and effective decapitation with one good swing. Nothing to it.
The foul stench of the creature grew stronger with each step it took, until finally it was within striking range. As I mustered up my strength and turned while swinging my right arm at neck level, the machete swung through the air like a jet plane. As the blade hit the zombie’s neck the flesh was sliced, then the bone disconnected, and back out the other side. Throughout the course of my work I’d done this sort of thing countless times. That’s the part that disturbed me.
The Order of the Broken Cross had forcibly converted countless agents over the course of history for the sole reason that the new converts gave the Order a complete understanding of the agency they once worked for. And today’s Order wasn’t much different, they would’ve known how easy it’d be for a competent agent to dispatch a single zombie under good conditions with a sharp machete. It really seemed as if they’d planned for me to have a flawless victory. That’s when the question popped into my head. What now?
It was a good question, and like most good questions, I didn’t know the answer to it. There wasn’t any readily obvious way out of the cage, and the only things left inside were a rubber band, machete, and a piece of string. Along with the carcass of a now headless zombie. What was I supposed to eat and drink. My attention focused on the zombie again.
“Oh those fuckers…” I said aloud to myself as I realized exactly what they put me in here for. Not only was I expected to cannibalize, but to cannibalize something that would turn me into a rotting cannibal. Downright devious, not to mention ironic. I’d be acting like a zombie by eating its flesh, and then turned into an actual zombie due to the still active virus in it's flesh.
“You are what you eat.” I muttered to myself while I looked for a way of escape. And all things considered the only way out was through the locked door, which would require a key that I didn’t have. That or wait until starvation made me so thin that I could simply slip through the bars. I decided that my best and only hope was going to be to negotiate with my captors somehow, however unlikely that was to work.
And so I waited, and waited. After two hours nobody came. Still no one after three hours. Four hours later I thought I heard something, but nobody appeared. Five hours later it was the same. But six hours later I definitely heard something coming from above, which was nice since it confirmed my belief that I was in a basement. I listened carefully and I heard that someone was walking around. Then shouting that I couldn’t understand through the floor. A minute later the door busted down and a light shone in my face, blinding me like a bat in the sun.
“Miller!” Shouted a slightly accented voice that I recognized. I knew it wasn’t Sengir, and it wasn’t Agent West. It was a voice that I didn’t expect to hear from, not on this mission at least.
“Gandalf, that you?” I asked the light with the voice.
“No, this is the Angel of Death.” Replied the voice in a sarcastic tone.
“Huh, I always thought that the Angel of Death would have a more… I dunno… evangelical source of light than a flashlight shined in a guy’s face.” I said, now with my hands in front of my eyes.
“Matters of life and death is always just a joke to you, isn’t Miller?” Questioned the man with the holy flashlight of death.
“Nah, that was one of the best albums of the millennium thus far.” I answered.
“You know I love Iron Maiden too, but really, is it all just a joke to you?” Asked the flashlight bearer.
“No point taking life too seriously, it’s not like anyone gets out alive.” I answered.
“Well I can see that being captured by the Order hasn’t changed much about your attitude.” Commented the man with the light that was beginning to become a pain in the retina.
“So how’s about you stop shining that bloody light in my face. And while you’re at it how about you get me out of here.” I requested.
The flashlight was pointed away from my face and the wielder stepped forward towards the gate to the cage where his figure was fully lit up by the single lightbulb in the cage. A tall and fairly muscular man with an intimidating scowl, Agent Prophet was wearing the grey coveralls of the assault squad and was currently holding an M3 Grease Gun in his right hand. On exchange from Britain’s Vampire Investigative Bureau (VIB as it was usually referred to), Prophet’s real name was unknown but had earned the name he used after dodging countless life threatening events over the course of his lifetime.
After a brief inspection of the door, he reached behind and grabbed a strap, pulling forward an entry shotgun. With a single well aimed shot to the lock the door was blown open, granting the sweet freedom I desired.
After Prophet took a quick look around we headed upstairs. The stairs were the creeky old kind you’d expect in an old abandoned house, and the upstairs didn’t contradict that. Judging by what I saw, the house was older and hadn’t been taken care of in many years. We were in the living room and I heard familiar human voices talking in the kitchen. Through the windows I could see that the sun was starting to rise and that we were in a run down neighborhood.
“Where on Earth are we?” I asked Prophet.
“Some city called Elgin.” He said.
“What happened to Agents Reeve and West? Last I remember is Reeve falling off the bridge and West taking off after a vampire on the highway.”
“West is looking for Reeve, his little chase after that vampire was covered by a news chopper. One of the best high speed chases I’ve ever seen, we taped it if you’d like to watch it.”
“Wait a minute, what happened to Reeve again?”
“Disappeared.” Said an agent from the kitchen. He walked out with two others, all wearing grey coveralls, meaning that they were attached to the agencies assault squad. The man who had spoken wasn’t as tall as Prophet, but was muscular and had steel grey eyes that could stare down a bear but would rather blast it with the shotgun he was carrying. That was Agent Wincal, but because of his past military experience and his leadership role we just called him Sarge. He was the merciless killing machine in charge of the assault squad, and was also the agency book club president.
The man to his left had a goatee, a slightly more wiry frame than his comrades and was holding an M27 sniper rifle. Agent Rhodes was his name, and he was one of the best snipers in the agency, and was considered the Carlos Hathock of the era in terms of what he did against vampires and zombies, rivaled only by Agent Reeve. But being a sniper was only half of his resume, he was also one of the agencies top vampire experts, and wasn’t bad at accounting. Rhodes was calm, calculating, intelligent, patient, and was able to piss in a bag like none other.
To Wincal’s right was a gentleman similar in build to Wincal, but had a beard and was packing an M14 rifle. He was Agent Stars, an agent originally from Canada, and one of the best weapons modders in the world. Able to do highly professional jobs on a very limited budget and minimal supplies, Stars was highly innovative and was a skilled sharpshooter as well. Although not quite a sniper like Rhodes, he could still hit targets at a long distance like few others could, and being from Canada he had excellent cold weather skills.
“What do you mean she disappeared? Shouldn’t it have been a matter of looking under the bridge?” I questioned.
“There wasn’t any body, or body parts, or even a blood splatter of any kind.” Answered Prophet.
“I saw her fall off the bridge.” I said.
“We know, we believe you. There was a witness who had been coming down Route 47 on his way home from work. He was the one that got the license plate number for the van that hauled you off, otherwise we would’ve never found you.” Said Wincal.
“So then what the hell happened to her?” I said.
“My bet is that the vampires got her and took her someplace else.” Said Prophet.
“Or maybe she got lucky and landed in a dump truck or something.” Said Stars.
“Either way Agent West is on the case.” Said Wincal.
then, what the hell are you guys doing out here?” I asked.
“Saving your Yankee ass.” Replied Prophet.
“That’s not what I meant. The director said that you guys were on standby, not deployed out here for the mission.” I countered.
“When you and Reeve disappeared, West reported it to Pecos and we were out here about twelve hours later.” Responded Wincal.
“Any clue where the vampires went off to?” I inquired.
“Not yet, but the van they took you away in isn’t here so I’m assuming that they took it with. We’ve already got a description and license plate number sent out to all the police in the area so it shouldn’t be long.”
“What about the address that vehicle is registered to?” I asked.
“333 West 35th Street. We were planning on checking it out once we sprung you out of this place.” Said Prophet.
“No use checking out that address. We’ll just have to wait for that van to turn up.” I replied.
“If the vampires had used that address as an occupancy then it’s worth checking out.” Said Rhodes.
“As much as I’d love to see a Sox game, they’re not having as good a year as last year and we’ve got stuff we need to get done.” I said.
“What’d you mean? Nobody said anything about a socks.” Asked Prophet.
“They registered the van’s address as New Comiskey Park, home of the White Sox. You know, the non-suck Chicago baseball team.” I said.
“Oh.” Replied Rhodes.
“Could’ve sworn I’ve seen that in a movie, but either way we’re staying in the same hotel as you Miller so we’ll give you a ride back.” Said Wincal.
“What about my Jeep?” I asked.
“They left it on the bridge so we had Agent Khan and Sinclaire drive it to the hotel and sit tight.” Answered Wincal.
“So Pecos sent more investigators then?” I asked.
“Affirmative.” Replied Wincal.
“Alright, let’s skedaddle then.” I suggested.
Pvt Serrano - May 20, 2007 02:28 AM (GMT)
Crap, Cyber. You've been a busy man.
Guess I'm not the only one that writes to pass time.
I have a zombie story if you're interested. Not FVZA (based offa the Zombie Survival Guide) but people say it's good.
Cyber78 - May 20, 2007 02:47 AM (GMT)
Seeing as I love zombie related fiction I'd absolutely love to see what you've written.
Pvt Serrano - May 20, 2007 02:52 AM (GMT)
The Story of My Life. With Zombies.
“If you want peace, prepare for war.” That was the saying I always tried to live by. I hoped that it would never come to violence, but was ready to act if the need arose. We all seem to think we’re untouchable, a sort of “It can’t happen to me” attitude. It always happens to somebody else, never to me.
That attitude never made sense to me.
Call me paranoid or whatever you will, but I always tried to be as ready as possible for the worst-case scenario. I collected knives, blades under six inches in complete compliance with the dorm rules. Not much but at least it was something. Even though I knew that a knife against a gun-packing criminal was asking to be shot, I felt it better to go down fighting than to simply curl up and be executed.
However, what happens when a knife has almost no effect on an attacker? You carve them up like a Thanksgiving turkey and they don’t even flinch. I never even considered that possibility. That lack of foresight nearly proved to be my undoing. This is my story.
My name is Jaycen Serrano, an ordinary college student with a bit of a knife-collecting hobby. If the dorm would’ve allowed it, it would’ve been gun collecting. Before I go further, let me just say that I’m not a violent person. I like guns. I like the noise and recoil you get when you fire one. I like hitting my target dead-on, a very nice show of discipline in my opinion. However, I would never willingly take the life of another human being. I value life and if it is in danger, I will do everything in my power to protect it, even if it means taking another life to protect the lives of the innocent.
Alright, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I’ll continue. I’ve been into zombies for a while, probably watching every Romero movie ever made and reading through the Zombie Survival Guide about five times. However, this was just an interest; I never really thought that zombies could be real. After all, they were simply too ridiculous to even exist, right?
Let me set the scene for you. It was mid-April, the weather still a bit chilly from winter but slowly warming up into spring. It had been raining about every other day, sometimes combined with strong wind gusts, an inconvenience but nothing too bad. On a more positive note, whenever it wasn’t raining, the skies were blue and the sun was shining. Of course, none of that means squat when it’s nighttime. I forget the exact date, but I think it was either the Eighteenth or Nineteenth. Finals were coming up soon and I was naturally a bit on edge. I’d just bought myself a nice little switchblade, a good-quality piece with a pearl green handle and a lightning fast action. In the minutes before everything went down, I’d been sharpening said knife, something I do to relieve stress from time to time. Everything seemed normal; I was watching Mythbusters on TV, ignoring the strange smell coming from somewhere in my room, and listening to a bit of heavy metal on the computer. It was around ten at night, a usual time for me to be up and about. As I dragged the knife through the sharpener, I suddenly became aware of a very interesting smell. Not the ordinary nose tickling of my trashcan that desperately needed to be emptied, but something much stronger, like a piece of steak that’d been left out in the sun for a little too long.
Then it all started. Screaming, gunfire, sirens, the works. Keep in mind this was only a few days after the Virginia Tech shooting and you can probably guess what I was thinking. Very quickly, the sounds moved close to my building, eventually coming INSIDE my building. By then, I’d grabbed pretty much every knife I had, my tactical vest and my steel pot helmet and was waiting by the door for the sounds of the crazed gunman out in the hall. As soon as I heard footsteps, I threw the door open and swung the helmet at the attacker’s head. To my surprise, he merely stumbled back from the impact, held his arms towards me and let out a demonic groan.
“Holy crap! It’s a zombie! I was right!” Was the first thought that went through my head, for obvious reasons, mainly because half his face had rotted off and he seemed to be missing a good sized chunk of stomach. At this point, I did the only thing I could think of; I hit him with the helmet again, and again, and again, so on and so forth until I somehow managed to crack his head open. Remember that one scene from The Empire Strikes Back, where Han Solo cuts open the snow lizard thing’s stomach? I had that line running over and over through my head.
“And I thought they smelled bad on the outside!”
This guy reeked like no reek I’ve ever smelled before. To say that he smelled like death would be an insult to the Reaper himself, which I’m just now realizing is a bit ironic to say seeing as I’m the one who’d just busted his noggin. I hate irony. Anyways, it appeared that the zombie plan I’d put together was going to have some use after all, assuming I could get everything together that I needed to survive. I quickly threw on a heavy jacket and stuffed one of my backpacks with stuff I thought I’d have a use for; flashlight, bottled water, change of clothes, sleeping bag, etc. Without delay, I left my room and ran out of the building, stopping only once to swat a zombie away with my helmet. Outside wasn’t much better than inside, probably worse in fact. Zombies were everywhere, doing what zombies do; stumbling about, moaning, trying to eat me, you get the idea. So I smack another zombie upside the head and get on my poorly constructed and poorly maintained bicycle, a bit rusty but I don’t plan on keeping it for very long. I ride up the obnoxious hill that sits between me and the nearest sports store (made even more obnoxious by the constant zombie roadblocks). After a bit of careful maneuvering, I make it to one of Cedar City’s many gun stores. Finding it unlocked, I entered and was met by the sight of the store’s owner being made into a dinner by a group of several famished undead. As quietly as I could, I snuck over to the counter and grabbed the first two guns I saw; an M1 Carbine and a Colt 1911A1. I figured if they were good enough to invade Normandy, they were good enough to do a bit of zombie control. After grabbing as much ammunition as possible, I made tracks across the street to the Polaris dealer. Fortunately, the storage gate was unlocked, giving me access to all sorts of off-road vehicle goodness. I picked the closest quad I saw and filled it up with gas from a nearby can. With some creative use of tie-downs, I was able to attach said can and a few others to the quad’s rack and fenders, giving me a couple hundred miles or range before I needed to find another station. Without delay, I started the 700cc engine and took off down the road “accidentally” plowing a lone zombie over in the process. Must’ve taken ten miles for the chunk of his intestine to finally come off the fender.
“Lovely.” Was the only thing I remember thinking as it finally let go, splattering off the back fender and hitting the pavement with a nice burst of red.
After about fifteen miles of traveling North on I-15, I ran into my first problem. I’d passed tons of zombies so far which wasn’t really a problem as I was much faster than they were. What was a problem was the titanic traffic jam that I ran into. Cars were stopped, bumper to bumped, drivers screaming as the undead methodically made their way to each car, breaking open the windows and devouring the occupants.
Not a pretty sight.
Fortunately, I’d chosen an off-road vehicle for a reason. I turned off the highway and made my way through the rougher terrain alongside the road with ease. People screamed and shouted at me as I flew by, thinking that somehow they could tag along with me. However, I knew if I were to stop, they’d probably just throw me off and steal my stuff.
Not gonna happen.
I twisted that throttle as far as it could go, flying along the dirt path at ridiculous speeds, avoiding rocks and miscellaneous other objects thrown at me from the highway. After a little while, the trail started running farther away from the road, putting me safely out of range. It appeared then that I’d be home free, only having to dodge zombies until I got to my destination, completely disregarding the fact that I’d have to drive through Salt Lake City and many other populated areas. I was feeling pretty good. My plan had gone of without a hitch and was working perfectly.
For a while anyways. About an hour later, I was able to get back onto the road, the traffic jam long behind me. All that was ahead of me was an open road and couple hundred miles until I needed to get more gas. That was the case until I crested a hill in the road. Up ahead, I saw a person on the ground, backing away desperately from three zombies. Quickly, I stopped my quad and grabbed my carbine. My grandpa doesn’t call me “Sniper” for nothing. Three shots, three exploded heads, three less rounds for future use.
Now some people say that when you shoot someone, you feel bad about it, wondering what the person you’d just removed from the mortal sphere was like before you’d offed them.
I didn’t feel anything as I walked over to the person I’d just rescued, a girl about my age, dressed up like some sort of special forces commando and carrying an empty AR-15. She also looked a bit like Claire Redfield from Resident Evil, which was awesome. Man, when I walked up to her it was like she’d just been saved by some muscular prince on a white horse. She was all over me screaming “Thank you!” over and over again, nearly knocking me over in the process. As you can tell by the fact that I actually had a zombie plan in the first place, this much physical contact was a tad bit foreign to me. I wasn’t any muscle-bound prince on a horse, I was a college student of average build on a Polaris 700 EFI wearing a hodgepodge mix of various types of combat gear I’d bought at a military surplus store. Not really my idea of a rescuer, but to each their own right?
Anyways after I calmed her down a bit, she introduced herself as Kami Redeker, a local of the nearby town of Beaver, Utah. Apparently, she’d been hit by zombies too. She managed to escape but the rest of her family hadn’t been so fortunate. As a matter of fact, one of the zombies I’d just plugged happened to be her father. Way to make a first impression huh? It was then that she told me that the zombies weren’t an isolated incident. They were everywhere, every continent, every country. I was a bit shocked to learn that the outbreak had started almost two weeks ago in China, quickly spreading to other countries like wildfire. Apparently, the government had blocked news reports in order to prevent pandemonium. While they had good reason to do this, I thought that maybe they should’ve released information once people’s neighbors started eating each other. Just a thought.
Back to Kami. Although I didn’t want to take anyone with me, I knew in the back of my head that I’d have a much better chance of survival with another person, especially one with an AR-15. Besides, I just blew her dad away, which left me feeling a bit bad for some reason. She didn’t seem too choked up, though, which was a good sign for me. Looked like she had a stable head on her shoulders and wasn’t one of the annoying, controlling, helpless ones. I’ve seen what happens to guys who stay around certain types of girls too long. They lose all will of their own, worship the ground they walk on, and stay up till 2 AM having phone conversations with ‘em. Then when the time comes, the girl expects the guy to put his life on the line for her while she stands back and watches as he gets his butt handed to him. True love huh? Yeah, whatever, I’ll make sure to write that one down. That’s the main reason I never really tried to get a girlfriend. With what society encourages them to do today, they’ve become more reliant on men than they care to admit, letting the guys do all the hard work while they stand back and complain about how men run the world. I couldn’t see myself ever spending more time than necessary with someone like that. If I was ever to get a girlfriend, she had to be a freakin’ Spartan; a strong willed, independent, loyal, no crap, type of chick who could hold her own in a fight. So far have we fallen that it becomes hard to find somebody like this. Fortunately for me, I seemed to have just teamed up with one of ‘em. This being a chance of a lifetime, I let her come with me.
Just one problem.
I only had enough supplies for three people; me, myself, and I. If we were gonna live through this, we’d have to get more supplies, which meant going into Beaver with all the happy locals. By happy locals I mean zombies by the way.
We rode into that town like we were being chased by a pack of rabid animals, which was pretty much our situation at that point. While we were here, we had two stops to make, a food store, and the local pawn and sporting goods store. We found an abandoned grocery story soon after entering the town and quickly raided it for as much non-perishable food as we could carry, piling it all into a cooler, which was, in turn, tied to the quad’s luggage rack. With our supply of food at an acceptable level, we took off down the street like greased lightning, weaving in between zombies like some sort of autocross slalom event. However, instead of cones, there were walking corpses and hitting them gained extra points instead of time on the clock. In no time at all, we’d arrived at the pawnshop. Kami ran in to grab some stuff while I held the zombies off from the front of the store, dropping about twenty before she returned, hands full of various sorts of survival gear including the most important kind in this situation; firearms and ammunition for ‘em. We didn’t even bother to load the equipment before tearing away as the parking lot was quickly becoming thick with the undead. Organization could wait.
By the time we stopped for the night, it was about two in the morning. It was 2 AM and I was having a conversation with a member of the opposite sex. Again with the irony. Anyways, Kami had managed to grab a tent and a couple of sleeping bags from the store, giving us shelter from the rain that was starting to fall. Currently, we were perched atop a large rock with a technical approach, a suitable deterrent for Zack. Problem was, we had to leave the quad at the bottom, making a quick escape something that would be very difficult. Fortunately, we had both made it out alive and unharmed. Unfortunately, it was freezing cold and raining. Not really the ideal conditions to spend the night camping in my humble opinion. The temperature outside was thirty-five degrees, our two sleeping bags were rated for forty and above, rendering them almost useless. This problem led to one of the most awkward moment’s I’d had in a long time. We decided to put one sleeping bag inside the other, then both sleep in the double bag. Although it was significantly warmer than the single bags, it was twice as embarrassing. You should’ve seen us there, facing opposite directions, jumping whenever the other accidentally bumped into one of us. I could here my smart aleck friend’s voice in my head.
“Woo! Go Jaycen! Looks like your time has come!” I closed my eyes and sent him a thought telling him to have a nice tall steaming cup of shut-the-you-know-what-up. That comeback satisfied me, letting off enough tension to allow me to go to sleep.
I woke the next morning in a bit of a compromising position. Apparently, both of us had rolled around in our sleep, with me laying face down on the ground and her laying face down on top of me. Very awkward. On one hand, I knew we had to get up and hit the road, but on the other, I really didn’t want to wake her up by moving. Fortunately for me, she woke up on her own, giving me a nice blast of morning breath. She too realized our position and leapt out of the bag like I had the plague, her face red as a tomato. We quickly took the tent down, ate a speedy breakfast, and got moving. It was 200 miles to Salt Lake City and I wanted to be out of there by dark. If we could somehow manage to get past Utah’s capital, we’d be in the clear to travel up into Idaho where we could find a suitably isolated place to wait out the zombie outbreak. What would happen after that was impossible to plan. For all I knew, we might become the King and Queen of Jaycenia, a brand new country formed from the shambles of the United States. However attractive that might have sounded, I really would have preferred to go back to living in the good ole USA.
We finally got on the road around eight that morning after dispatching a zombie trying in vain to make his way up to our campsite. For his hard work and perseverance, he received a good pop in the mouth with the butt of my carbine. Ah hardwood. Breakfast of champions, no? After we got rid of the G, we took off heading north again, making astoundingly good time, only taking about three and a half hours of continuous riding to get to the outer suburbs of Salt Lake City. Our butts were way sore by then, a fact not helped by the large amount of undead that greeted us as we rode in. The streets were also clogged with cars as well, forcing us to use dirt trails and sidewalks. Kami served as our gunner of sorts, firing her AR-15 at zombies as we rode along. After three hours, we hadn’t even made it halfway into the city due to the blockages in the roadway. Just when we thought it couldn’t get worse, it did. I guess thinking that it can’t get worse always makes it worse for some reason. Anyways, we ran into a much bigger problem than zombies, mainly looters and bandits. They saw my quad and wanted it for themselves, probably with Kami along with it as well as all our supplies.
Monkeys will fly out of my butt before that happens.
I rode that thing like I’d never ridden a quad in my seventeen years of experience. (I could ride an electric quad before I could walk. I’ve been around them enough.) I was up on two wheels, steering with one hand and firing my carbine with the other. I’m not sure if I actually hit anyone, but I can say for sure that I wouldn’t feel sorry if I did. These punks were using a disaster as an excuse to commit crimes, raping and pillaging with no regard for those simply trying to survive. As much as I would’ve liked to stand and fight, I knew that there was no way I’d be able to take them all on at once. There are just some times when you need to pick your fights you know? Although there was that one time that a fight picked me. We were tearing along an almost deserted expressway, taking the road that led into the city as there weren’t as many cars stopped there, when some thugs in a pickup started chasing us. I did my best to evade as Kami fired with her AR-15, hitting one of the passengers but not the one person who needed to go down; the driver. Pretty soon she ran out of ammunition. We were flying down the highway at over seventy and she runs out of ammunition. Don’t you love when stuff like that happens? Anyways, one of the guns she’d grabbed from the pawn and sports shop was a Remington 700 hunting rifle, my type of gun. I told her to take the handlebars while I retrieved the rifle and jacked a round into the chamber. I told Kami to hold the quad steady while I took the shot. She grabbed onto the handlebars as I turned around, resting the rifle on her shoulder, and took aim, holding my breath and doing my best to keep the crosshairs on the driver’s center mass. The rifle kicked hard as it went off. I saw the windshield shatter and a spray of red through the scope. A few seconds later, the truck swerved to the left, running at full speed into the center divide. Before I took the handlebars back, I saw some of the passengers thrown from the vehicle, likely to their deaths. That incident was the first time I was sure I’d ever killed anyone and like the first zombie I downed, I felt absolutely zero remorse. It had been done in defense of my life as well as the life of another. There really wasn’t anything bad to feel. But I’m waxing philosophical now. I hate when that happens.
Idaho! Really doesn’t look much different than Utah in my opinion. Trees, mountains, rocks, zombies, it seemed to have everything Utah did, minus the crazed looters in pickup trucks. Well that was true where I was anyways. Our final objective was the mountain range of the continental divide on the border of Idaho and Montana. There, we’d be able to find a nice, easily defensible position to make our home for the coming years. The mountains would be lush and in bloom at this time of year, allowing for a nice amount of food and supplies when the stuff we brought with us ran out. Heck, if we got hungry, I could always go out and shoot a deer, even though I had absolutely no idea whatsoever how to clean one. Gotta learn sometime right?
It started to get too dark to ride about nine that night. Once we’d gotten out of Salt Lake City, it had been cakewalk with all sorts of dirt side roads to make our progress go along faster. By the time we had to stop, we’d reached Malad City, Idaho, stopping for the night in the nearby mountains. Once again, we found a nice defensible spot and set up camp, sitting down for a luxurious meal of meatball Spaghetti-Os. We were only interrupted once by a lone zombie who had somehow managed to claw his way up the rocky trail to our site. I promptly kicked him back down after dramatically yelling “THIS IS SPARTA!”.
He didn’t bother us anymore that night. Apparently my Spartan-like nature scared him off. Either that or he broke in the fall. Probably the latter but the former sounds so much cooler in my humble opinion.
It had gotten colder as we went farther North, making a shared sleeping bag necessary again. For some reason it wasn’t as awkward this time. Probably because we were too tired from the day’s events to care. A couple hundred miles and a firefight’ll do that to you. I fell asleep almost immediately.
The next morning I woke up halfway out of the sleeping bag. I sat up to see that Kami had somehow turned around and burrowed inside, only her feet sticking out of the opening. Although we slept like bricks, we didn’t move like them. Unless those bricks happened to be in a falling building or something. I got up without waking her and made some breakfast, a couple pieces of Slim Jim and a travel box of Lucky Charms. Way to start the morning huh? As I ate my gourmet breakfast, I thought about how today would go. The quad was almost out of gas and we were almost out of ammunition, the two most important things to have in a situation like the one we were currently in. Unfortunately, that meant that we’d have to go into town for a supply raid. After that, it was nearly two hundred miles to our end point in the mountains near the small Idaho town of Spencer. The biggest hurtle would be a fifty mile stretch with no cities of any kind, making a breakdown a virtual death sentence. Fortunately, the mountains were within riding distance of Rexburg, Idaho, a nice supply point that could be used during our stay.
The ride into Malad City was interesting to say the least. Although it only had a population of about 2,100, it appeared that all of them were zombified, making our job slightly more difficult. The first stop was a gas station on the edge of town. I held the perimeter while Kami filled up the quad and the extra tanks. After fifty rounds from my carbine, we were all gassed up and ready to move to the next stop, a sports store a ways down the road. We rode there a tad bit recklessly, probably lowering the city’s population to about 1500 in the process. This time, Kami stood watch as I ran in. A few zombies were inside, loitering aimlessly. I gave them something to do, mainly die. Again. I figured they’d be pretty good at it by now. After the last zombie was down, I found the gun department and started loading my backpack full of ammunition and a couple of handguns, my favorite being a Smith and Wesson 500, a .50 Magnum revolver. You ever see what one of those things does to a zombie’s head? It makes it nonexistent along with the head of the zombie behind it and the one behind that one, probably continuing back a good five or six heads. Not something you wanted to be on the business end of, for sure. Before leaving, I made sure to grab a few cold-weather sleeping bags so that Kami and I wouldn’t have to spend every night in a compromising state. I do remember wondering why I cared about that anyways. It wasn’t like there was anyone around to see. Except God perhaps. I hear he doesn’t like that kinda stuff.
The next hundred-thirty miles to Rexburg were pretty uneventful. Once again, we rode at a good clip, weaving in between the occasional car or zombie, sometimes taking a pot shot at the latter. A few hours later, we passed by Rexburg. I had a friend there but didn’t want to go looking for her just yet. Rescue efforts would have to wait until base camp was up and running. The only trace of civilization for the next fifty miles flew past at over eighty miles per hour.
The fifty-mile stretch to Spencer was probably the most fun part of the trip. The old highway was devoid of car and carnivore, letting me really open up the quad’s 700cc engine, getting up to around one hundred. At that speed, we got to the remote town of Spencer, Idaho in only a half hour. The place was supposed to have a population of 34 people. I saw 35 zombies. Whatever. Kami and I pulled up and opened up. Spencer, Idaho; Population Zilch.
After rummaging through the few gift shops in the small town, we made our way up into the mountains, the quad taking us a pretty good distance in. After a few hours of scouting, we found what was without a doubt the best hideout we could’ve asked for. It was a raised ledge on the side of a mountain with a fairly large cave going back into the side of the hill. Best of all, it had only one access point. The whole thing was surrounded by a cliff except for one place, that being the aforementioned access point. To get up, one needed to scale a narrow, steep, 150-foot trail that squeezed in between two large rocks at the top. Without a quad and a good run, it was virtually impossible to climb without a rope anchored from the top. As we surveyed the area, it became apparent that this was one in a million spot. As for defense, even if the invaders had a vehicle or rope, they would be completely exposed to fire from the rocks at the top, a place we nicknamed “The Phalanx”. At about the size of half a football field, there was plenty of room to move, even if we were to bring more people in with us.
Although we had found the perfect place to build our complex, we still knew that there was a threat from both humans and zombies. As such, someone always needed to be stationed at the Phalanx, armed with the Remington 700 to spot and intercept zombies and hostile survivors, maybe even take a deer if we got hungry enough. We worked in shifts, one person watching the Phalanx while the other worked to build up the camp, digging fire pits and latrines, setting up cliffside firing positions, building living areas, cooking food, etc. Although it worked well enough with two people, it became apparent that we’d need more people with us to live comfortably. We needed to recruit more survivors, either actively searching them out or waiting for them to stumble upon our location. At this point, Kami and I were determined to live, whether it be just us or a well-organized army of survivors. We were getting through this no matter what.
About Kami. I’ve never been in love so I’m not sure if this is it. What I do know is that there is a strong band of friendship, kinda like the bonds old war veterans talk about. Friendship so strong that you know you’d take a bullet for each other without a doubt. I don’t know, maybe it is love. If it is, it’s a whole lot more interesting than I thought it’d be. I guess I finally found my Spartan after all. Who’d a thunk it?
There's a Part 2 if people like this one. Part 3 is still in production.
Cyber78 - May 20, 2007 03:03 AM (GMT)
Not bad, not bad at all. Pretty damn descriptive I must say. Please do show part 2.
Pvt Serrano - May 20, 2007 03:12 AM (GMT)
Welcome to New Sparta. Three rules. One: The needs of the group come first. Two: You’re no good to me dead. Three: I’m in charge. You got a problem; you take it up with me. Got it?
Anyways, now that we’ve got the formalities out of the way, let me introduce myself. Jaycen “Private” Serrano. Private’s just the call sign by the way, don’t bother calling me that inside of camp. I’m the leader of New Sparta, one of the few pockets of human resistance left in the continent of North America. We’re only ten strong right now, but we live without fear of the undead in our nice little setup. Heck, we could hold off an army if we needed to, a very likely possibility these days. Whether it be human or zombie, an army of either marching up the canyon is never a good sign.
Fortunately, we have a bit of a deterrent.
New Sparta is a mountainside ledge, about the size of half a football field with a cave going a few yards back into the mountain. It’s most imposing feature, however, is the hundred fifty-foot cliff surrounding it. This impassable barrier forces all who come and go to use a steep hill, nearly impossible to climb without a good engine or a piece of rope. At the top of said path is an outcropping of rocks known as the “Phalanx”. From there, a lookout can spot incoming targets and intercept if necessary.
Okay, enough with the military tactician crap, let me tell you how New Sparta came to be. About four months ago, I was sitting in my Cedar City dorm room, listening to some Metallica and ignoring the funky smell coming from my overflowing trash can. The next thing I knew, I was whacking a zombie upside the head with a steel pot helmet and bicycling for my life up the hill to the nearby gun store and Polaris dealer. I grabbed some guns and a quad and took off North, dodging zombies and traffic jams. That is where I met my second-in-command, Ms. Kami “Flechette” Redeker, one of the most levelheaded members of the opposite sex I’ve ever met. Very nice shot with an AR-15 too. Anyways, she was in a bit of trouble with a group of zombies when I came upon her. After dispatching the aforementioned zombies, she joined up with me, making the perilous journey from Beaver, Utah to the mountains outside Spencer, Idaho. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
Alright, let’s meet the gang shall we? You should already be familiar with me. If not, I’d suggest you get that checked out. As I said before, I’m the leader of this pocket of resistance. I’m generally pretty layed back, your typical Type B personality. However, I will take action if needed. I ain’t gonna take your crap so don’t bother with it. Aside from my leadership role, I also act as New Sparta’s resident sharpshooter. No, not a sniper, a sharpshooter. Basically, I shoot things from far away, but also have the capability to get up close and personal without any of that sneaking around and low crawling through bushes. I prefer an M1 Carbine and a Colt 1911A1 by the way, just in case you were thinking of buying some ammunition for me.
Next up is Kami “Flechette” Redeker. As I mentioned earlier, I found her on the way up from Cedar City and took her with me. Call her my girlfriend or whatever you will, just don’t call her a bad shot. Put that girl on the Phalanx with her AR-15 and she’ll hold off a zombie horde all day. Trust me; I’ve seen her do it. Also worth mentioning, she looks a bit like Claire Redfield from Resident Evil, a suitable person to resemble in this situation.
Up next is one of the craziest people I’ve ever met. Corey “Devil” DeVellis. This nut came to us all the way from Connecticut. By himself. On a freakin dirt bike! Man, I’ve ridden for a couple hours and gotten sore enough to barely move the next day. Ol’ Devil rode a couple thousand miles and still got up the next day. Aside from having a resistance to saddle-soreness, he’s our designated sniper. Guy’s like a ninja. You’ll look all day long and never see him till he pops you with his 700. Or if he’s in a bad mood, you’ll get a nice taste of his machete. Either way, if you’re a bandit or zombie, I’d recommend looking out for him. Not that you’ll be able to find him but it doesn’t hurt to try. Well if you stay still it doesn’t hurt. Move and he might hit your leg or something. That would suck.
The next three I’m obliged to introduce together, mainly because you’ll never see them apart. They’re Hubcap, Fudge, and Lupus. The former two are of the canine persuasion. In fact, Hubcap was my pet when I lived back in San Diego before college. Somehow, the screwball dog had managed to run halfway across the country to find me. Don’t really know what kind of dog she is. Part black lab, part enigma, all weirdo. Fudge is a German Sheppard, a big loveable oaf really. We found him running around Spencer a few weeks ago and took him in. The two dogs serve as excellent zombie-detectors, going absolutely nuts whenever Zack gets within firing range.
Lupus is someone you’ll never see apart from these two. Her real name’s Tina but she spends so much time with those dogs it’s almost like she’s one of them. She takes care of them, feeds them, and even sleeps with ‘em. Also worth noting, she is legally blind. Don’t let that fool you though. You get into a fight with her and her Mossberg, you ain’t getting my bet. Also, she’s pretty good at cooking and sewing. If not for her, we’d be eating Spaghetti-Os and wearing leaves right about now.
Next up is KJ. Just KJ. Or Lockpick if it makes you feel better. This one came to us from my hometown of San Diego, California. She rode a freakin’ Vespa up here, somehow making it through the California-Nevada desert alive and without any bite marks. On a Vespa. A scooter. Insane no? Girl can unlock just about anything and climbs trees like a chimpanzee. Got a locked up store with all sorts of goodies inside? Call ‘ol Lockpick and she’ll have it open in no time. Zombies getting you down? Creative use of samurai swords, hairspray, and a Zippo lighter will fix your problem real fast.
Here we have our resident German transfer student, Mikail, or “Craftsman”. Guy barely speaks any English but’ll sing songs all night long if you let him. Fortunately for all of us, KJ speaks German and translates, making him pretty useful. He’s a fantastic shot and can use pretty much anything as a weapon, which can get a bit messy at times. Strange because the guy hates violence. Oh well, use it if you got it I suppose. Outside of battle, he’s a fairly quiet guy; a nice cook if you like German food, but really cool once he gets to know you. He can usually be seen carrying an old M1 Garand and a hunting knife, a few things I can guarantee you do not want to be on the business end of.
The last two should be introduced together. Meet Steve “Grizzly” and Mandy “Sparky” Hart, a husband and wife team. Steve is twenty-seven, an ex-Army Ranger, and probably the most combat experienced one in the group. Guy’s built like a bear but has the personality of a puppy. He’s pretty much the nicest guy you’ll ever meet and will openly give out advice on marksmanship and military tactics. He also loves dogs, helping Tina wrangle Fudge and Hubcap on a daily basis. Normally, he carries around a slightly modified AR-15 and a Ka-Bar knife. Oh and by slightly modified, I mean fully automatic.
Mandy Hart is twenty-five, a nurse from Idaho Falls. She has the most medical knowledge in the group and can usually be found tending cuts and scrapes. A very friendly person, she also knows her way around a Ruger Mini-14. It should also be noted that she is very pregnant at the moment. She and Steve are expecting a new member of their family any day now.
That was us three days ago. Funny how much stuff can change in three days isn’t it? Let me detail of those interesting seventy-two hours.
So there we were. It was twilight, that really beautiful time of day where light still plays across the sky, slowly being pushed back by the dark of the night.
Crap, I just spaced out. Where was I?
Oh yeah. We were just doing what we’ve been doing four the last four months. Kami and I were loading some pistol magazines, struggling with some of the European-made magazines. Not really easy on the thumbs if you ask me. Tina, Steve, and Mandy were inside the cave with the dogs, just kicking back and taking a well-deserved rest from the trials of the day. KJ and Mikail were over the campfire a few yards away from Kami and I, cooking up something that smelled pretty good for survival food. Corey was sitting at the Phalanx, staring intently at the cleared out approach to the camp. Everything was going pretty good. We’d just made a successful supply run to Idaho Falls, grabbing a nice haul of ammunition, tactical gear, and a few guns. In addition, we’d managed to grab a dirt bike and a quad from some guy’s garage. We had to pull pieces of him off of them before we could leave.
Anyways, we were all there when Corey shouts back at me that we’ve got three guys at the base of the hill. I grabbed my M1 Carbine and signaled for everyone to take firing positions along the perimeter. Everyone except Mandy and Tina moved up to the Phalanx, rifles aimed down towards the three figures cloaked in the half-light. The two ladies not at the perimeter moved up towards the base’s entrance, aiming their weapons at the top of the hill in the unlikely event that someone made it up past the fire from the Phalanx. As I looked down, I could see that there were, indeed three figures. I called out for them to stop and identify themselves, something I always do whenever someone shows up at our very large doorstep. I always get the answer I want, whether the responders intend to give it or not. A zombie’ll just moan and try to climb up, a group of legitimate survivors’ll identify themselves, and bandits’ll either try to smart talk their way up or just start shooting. These guys were definitely bandits. They told me that they wanted immediate access to food, water, and ammunition.
Hello to you too.
Normally, I’d flip them a rude gesture and send a few rounds their way. These guys, however, needed a bit of a wake up call so I told Corey to let the rope down. As they climbed up, I ordered everyone to form up around the entrance and look as mean as they could. You could imagine their surprise when they got up to find eight tough looking survivors with large weapons at the ready along with two growling attack-type dogs.
Welcome to New Sparta.
Apparently the first guy was a bit dense because he started talking tough to me. What he said was so ridiculous that I feel the need to recite the short conversation as is.
“You’ve got ‘till dawn to clear out. We’re takin’ over here.”
“Oh really? Why is that?”
“Cuz you got what we want. If you know what’s good for you, you’ll listen.”
“Hmm. Something makes me want to say no. So no.”
“Are you retarded?! If my gang gets in here, we’ll kill all of you idiots!”
“Huh?” A very amusing look crossed his face as I drew my 1911, aiming it at said face.
“IF you get in.”
“Are you serious?! This is bull!”
I couldn’t resist at this point. Apologies to Zack Snyder and Frank Miller.
“Bull?” I said with a grin. Corey snickered behind me. He knew what was coming. “THIS IS NEW SPARTA!!!” With that, we gave him and his friends a nice shove back down the hill, laughing as they tumbled down with all the grace of Rosie O’Donnell at Hometown Buffet on seafood night. Ooh. Burn.
All movie and celebrity references aside, we knew that we’d have a bit of a situation come daybreak. I did my best to gather my thoughts as we all went back to what we were doing. It took a few minutes, but I was able to form my master plan; mainly holding the perimeter and shooting anyone deemed to be not nice. However, before I could announce my brilliant strategy to the group, a very loud scream came from the cave. Kami and I jumped up and ran at a rather speedy clip, after signaling for Corey to hold his position at the Phalanx. What we came upon was not something I’d had to deal with before. Mandy was sitting there, clutching her stomach as the remainder of the group huddled around.
I’ve watched the Discovery Channel. I know what this means.
Figures the kid decides he wants out the day before a major battle. My first defensive action as the leader of New Sparta and my only medic is out of action. Not something I was really planning on dealing with. On top of that, she’d need at least two people to help get the kid out, meaning that I’d only have five guns, including myself, to defend against who knows what.
I like those odds.
That night was a bit hectic. We were running all over the camp, setting up firing positions, quickly downing as much food as we could, grabbing a quick nap if possible, and helping Steve and Tina tend to Mandy, who was obviously not in a very good mood. I asked her how she was feeling and she screamed at me to leave. Forget zombies or bandits, a woman in labor is probably the scariest thing on the planet.
Six AM. Not normally when we’d be awake unless on Phalanx duty. However today, everyone was awake, the five of us with both guns and opposable thumbs waiting at the Phalanx, rifles aimed down towards the approach to the entrance. Mandy hadn’t delivered yet and was obviously in a great deal of pain judging by the increasing volume of her screams. Tina and Steve were doing their best to make her comfortable while Hubcap and Fudge barked their heads off. Not exactly the calm before the storm you always hear about. I sat there, carbine aimed downrange, wishing that I’d found something a bit bigger during the last supply run. Don’t get me wrong, the M1 carbine is a great gun. The problem is, it’s a carbine, meaning that it’s only really useful for close in defensive fighting. Much rather have a M82 Barrett. That hits you and you do not get back up.
First contact came at six fifteen. And boy oh boy was it a contact. About fifty guys and two jeeps came out of the forest. At this point, I wasn’t even wondering how they got those things up the rough mountain trails; I was a bit distracted by the M2 heavy machine guns mounted on the back. These guys definitely meant business.
Unfortunately for them, so did we.
From their position in the clearing at the bottom of the hill, they couldn’t see us. That gave us the element of surprise, something useless against zombies, but invaluable against human opponents. The first shot came from my right side, Corey and his 700. That particular round knocked one of the gunners off his M2, sending him tumbling backwards off the jeep. The gang froze, exactly the response I was hoping for. Man, you should’ve seen it! We opened up on them like the Union army holding the Angle at Gettysburg. Although we all had semi-automatic or bolt-action rifles, it sounded like we’d just let loose with an M60 or something with all those guns going off at once. This initial volley knocked down about ten guys before we had to get back behind the rocks and reload, a very successful initiation of hostilities if I say so myself. One fifth of their force dead before they could even fire a shot. However, as soon as we stopped firing, they started. Bullets blasted off of rocks only a few feet from us. They had fire superiority and they knew it. However, we still had one thing they didn’t.
The hundred fifty-foot approach to the camp.
Although they had the advantage, they made possibly the stupidest mistake that they could have at that point, trying to climb the hill. Keep in mind, that although we were still pinned down by fire from the clearing, we still had a clear shot at the approach. Kami, using Steve’s AR-15 took up a prone position near the top of the hill and opened up. She’d managed to find a bipod and a ninety round magazine for the gun, effectively turning it into a .223 caliber light machine gun. You can bet the saps on the hill regretted the decision to climb as soon as they caught a glimpse of the barrel that rifle. Actually, I don’t think they lived long enough to regret it. The nine guys that tried to climb fell back down nine times faster and nine times deader. Unfortunately, we only had one ninety round magazine, forcing her to abandon her rifle and move to her sidearm, a Taurus Raging Bull .454 revolver. A bit interesting to see someone that size using a gun that big.
Corey had made himself a nice little sniping nest and was taking quick pot shots at the guys in the clearing below, ducking down to work the bolt and move to a different rock between each shot. Guy was racking up an impressive body count, probably taking down another ten guys before running out of .308 ammunition and having to switch to one of our many Beretta 9mm pistols we’d found. Not really the best gun for this kind of thing, but better than nothing I suppose.
KJ and Mikail were pulling their weight as well, taking turns loading 30-06 rounds into the Garand’s clips and firing like some sort of circus act. Only with more guns. They each hit five guys if my memory serves me well, which it does. Kinda surprising how efficient a pair can be if they know what they’re doing. That is until they ran out of ammunition, a very bad thing to happen under these circumstances. Like the others, they had to switch to handguns, reducing their effectiveness.
Now I wasn’t twiddling my thumbs this whole time. I took my fair share of shots, downing five guys and wounding two before my clip ran out. As I reached for another clip, it became apparent that I had chosen to reload the wrong magazines last night. Although I had plenty of clips only one was for the carbine. All the rest was for my .45.
The five guys still alive at the bottom of the hill were still firing up at us with their rifles. We only had handguns, so accuracy was a bit of an issue. I knew at this point that if we wanted to end this, we’d have to close the distance a bit. Problem was, there was no way they were going to try to come up the hill again. We’d have to go to them. It was then that the single craziest idea I’d had that week popped into my head. I told everyone except Kami to cluster around the entrance to deny access. I quickly ran back into the cave to retrieve something and was met with a bit of a messy sight. Mandy was still screaming, except this time, blood and other bodily fluids were everywhere. Doing my best to look like the fearless leader I should’ve been, I switched my .45 for Tina’s Mossberg and made tracks out of there. You know, you’d think the beginning of life would be a bit more…pretty.
With a quick pump of the shotgun, I ran over to our “garage” and grabbed my Polaris 700 EFI, the quad I’d used to escape Cedar City. Kami jumped on the back seat as I started her up and twisted the throttle. I went slow at first, lining up my run towards the exit. If this worked, it would be simultaneously awesome and effective. If it didn’t, well I don’t think I’d care anymore.
As everybody at the entrance parted, I pinned the gas and took off down the hill, catching a bit more air than I would’ve liked over rocks and bodies on the way down. We flew into that clearing like a bull charging through a china shop, with all the grace of said bull. As soon as we got near, I jammed the brake and half-dismounted, half-fell off the quad. Fortunately for the both of us, the remaining bandits were too surprised to fire back, letting me get off the first shot with the 12 gauge, striking down the first guy with a blast of buckshot to the face. Kami took the two guys on the other side of the quad, killing one with a round to the face and another with one through the chest. The next guy on my list made the mistake of standing up from behind a fallen tree to take a shot at me.
He stood up directly in front of me after I’d pumped the shotgun, providing me with a nice little sight picture on him. A quick pull of the trigger and he met a fate similar to that of his late buddy.
Four down, one to go. Easy, right?
No sooner had I pumped the shotgun, then I was introduced to a new kind of pain. Out of nowhere, something hit me in the left shoulder, knocking me back on my butt. It frickin hurt! Somehow, that last jerk had managed to get off a lucky shot.
Needless to say, that put me in a bad mood.
The adrenaline masking the pain, I got back to my feet and locked eyes with the punk that had just popped me. He was a kid in his late teens, about my age, fumbling with the jammed slide on a Glock 17. At this point his age didn’t matter in the least. I leveled that Mossberg as I ran up to him, shoved the barrel in his face and pulled the trigger.
You can probably guess what happened then.
Well somehow we’d managed to beat the odds, a group of five fending off an invading force ten times our size. The victory had brought with it both good and bad results.
First the good. We managed to scavenge a bunch of guns from the dead bandits, mostly handguns, shotguns, and a few hunting rifles. Two notable exceptions were the M2 machine guns mounted on the back of the jeeps, which were also a nice pair of trophies. Also, we’d managed to hold the bandits off long enough for Tina and Steve to deliver Mandy’s baby, a healthy boy.
Now the bad. For one, we now had fifty dead bodies around the camp, a virtual dinner bell for zombies. Two, we now had a baby to take care of, not really my area of expertise. Three, we were out of ammunition for the guns we had and were most familiar with, necessitating a supply run. Four, I’d just been shot in the shoulder, which hurt. A lot. Seeing as I was the most experienced quad and motorcycle rider in the group, that bullet made riding for supplies a very painful experience.
What a way to start a week, huh?
The whole battle had only lasted about a half hour although it seemed much longer than that to me, probably to everyone else as well. Kami and I rode the quad back up the hill to a mixed reception. On one hand, we were ecstatic that we’d just fended off a titanic hostile force. On the other, I had a frickin bullet in my shoulder. Although it wasn’t life threatening, that didn’t mean it still didn’t hurt! I walked over to the cave to check on Mandy, relieved to find that she’d finally pushed the kid out. As I entered, the three occupants looked at me like half my head was missing. Steve jumped to his feet and sat me down against one of the walls, tearing the sleeve off my shirt to get a look at the wound. Fortunately for me, the bullet had lodged in the meat, not hitting anything too important. That didn’t mean that it felt good though. Aside from that, the thing still needed to come out. Not something I was looking forward to for sure.
And I thought getting shot sucked. They literally had me pinned up against the wall as Mandy, still recovering from her baby incident, reached inside my shoulder and yanked the bullet out. Holy Hollow-Point, Batman! That thing was probably the most painful experience of my eighteen years of existence. I mean, this hurt more that flying off a dirt bike at eight miles per hour. FRIGGIN OW! They tell me that pain is just the brain’s way of announcing bodily damage. What I was wondering is why my brain felt the need to keep telling me that I was hurt. It’s like the hole in my shoulder wasn’t enough of a sign or something.
All complaints aside, Mandy did a fantastic job of getting the thing out and patching me up. Man, if a little bullet was all it took to put me out of action, I couldn’t even hope to imagine what childbirth would do. Fortunately that wouldn’t ever be a problem for me.
Okay, now that I was patched up, we had work to do. First, we needed to bury the dead bandits to keep the smell and decay down. Next, we had to make a rather sizable supply run to the city of Rexburg, about fifty miles southeast. Judging by how much ammunition we needed, this would likely be a two-day affair if we could leave within a few hours. Third, we needed to figure out how the heck to take care of a newborn baby. I figured I’d leave that to the female members. The thing would probably break if I touched it.
Burying the dead is not a pleasant experience. Even though they’d only been that way for a few hours, they’d already started to stink under the hot summer sun. Everyone except Mandy and Steve pitched in to dig trenches and pile the bodies in. Hopefully, the bodies hadn’t been out long enough for Zack to catch a whiff. That would be bad considering our current ammunition shortage. Very bad indeed. Anyways, it took us only about an hour to bury the bandits, putting them as deep as we could. Not really something I’d want to do again. On the bright side, the gravesite would be covered in flowers and plants come next spring. The circle of life at work, I suppose.
Only four of us would be able to make the supply run. We’d be taking my Polaris 700 and a Ranger RZR side by side the fifty miles to Rexburg. Steve and I would be leading the mission, with me on the quad and Steve on the side by side. Tina would accompany Steve, serving as a guide of sorts as she knew the town best. Kami would be my passenger, using an H&K USC, a semi-automatic carbine using .45 ACP ammunition instead of her usual AR-15. I would be carrying that one. Along with that, I decided to finally test out my Smith and Wesson 500. Lotsa fun there. Steve would have his assault rifle, while Tina would carry her usual Mossberg.. The others would stay back at base to defend against any follow up attacks or zombies that might descend upon the camp.
With waves and calls of goodbye, we left, riding down the hill past the graves of the fifty people we’d killed that morning, setting out on our journey like the pioneers of old.
Crap, I spaced again.
The trip to Rexburg was slower than the ones we’d made before. The RZR could only get up to 55 miles per hour, forcing Kami and I on the quad to slow down. Though it may have taken longer, the trip was just as boring as the previous ones, the only things to look at between the camp being rocks, grass, and the occasional rotting corpse. Not too many zombies out this way. However, as we got closer to the city, we had to slow down even more, taking dirt tracks off the side of the road to get past jams of abandoned cars. Zombies began to get more and more common as we got closer, going from almost none to “Holy crap! That’s a lot of zombies!” in only a few miles.
Our final destination was B & B Guns and Pawn, a shop located near the center of town. Problem was we’d have to get through half a town of zombies to get there. Also present was the possibility of bandits, something much worse than zombies as we’d learned earlier that morning. However, my biggest issue at this point was the gunshot wound to my shoulder. Riding along an abandoned highway hadn’t been too hard, but now that I was weaving all over the place between zombies and wrecked cars, the pain was rearing its ugly head once again. How I managed to get through that, I have no idea.
Anyways it was very late in the afternoon by the time we managed to find the shop. The area was thick with zombies, meaning that we’d have to enter, grab the ammo, and get out before being overrun. Kami and Tina stayed out front as Steve and I sprinted inside and began shoveling as much ammo as we could fit into our bags and packs; .223, .308, 9mm, .45, .50 BMG, the works. I also managed to get lucky enough to find something I wished I would have had this morning, A Barrett, M82. Giant rifle, that one, but worth its weight in gold for me.
With our packs full, we ran out front and threw them into the RZR’s bed and the Polaris’ racks. Kami and Tina were doing a superb job of holding off the advancing undead, scoring headshots every time while keeping our avenue of escape open. As I hefted the Barrett onto the quad’s rear rack, something popped in my shoulder.
I must’ve torn a muscle or something because my arm felt like it had been shot all over again. We’re in the middle of zombie country and my steering arm is out of commission. Couldn’t get worse right?
From down the street we hear the sound of engines, shouts, and gunfire. Again with the bandits. With my driving ability hindered, Kami took the handlebars and took off, Steve and Tina leading the way out in front of us. For a minute it seemed like we’d get out unscathed. However, to quote that one lady from Kill Bill:
“You really didn’t think it’d be that easy did you?”
Out of nowhere, a truck and a motorcycle appear behind us, loaded past capacity with bandits wielding very large weapons. At this point, I was sitting backwards on the quad, exchanging fire with the guys on the truck with my AR-15. Normally, I would’ve just shot the driver, but the movement of the quad as Kami swerved between zombies combined with my shoulder wound threw my aim off a bit. Actually it threw it off kind of a lot. A few of the bullets bounced off the truck but most ended up hitting the dirt around it. Very soon, I found that I was out of bullets, meaning I’d have to switch weapons as all the .223 ammo was in the RZR.’s bed. Quickly, I switched the AR-15 for Kami’s USC, firing that until it too ran out of ammunition, leaving me with my 500 and the Barrett. Unwilling to fire the gigantic rifle from anything other than a prone position, I pulled out my .50 Magnum. It only held five bullets and all the other ammunition for it was back at camp, meaning I’d have to ignore my shoulder and aim carefully if I planned on not getting run down by a bunch of nutcases in an F-150. I fought through the pain and aimed the massive revolver at the truck’s engine block, tensing up as I squeezed the trigger.
Crap. That was a big boom.
That gun had the biggest recoil I’d ever experienced. Knocked my hands straight back over my shoulder, it was so hard. The slug impacted the truck square in the radiator, spraying steam everywhere and effectively putting it out of action. Before I could celebrate, I still needed to solve my motorcycle problem. Looked like two guys on a dirt bike. The first one steered while the second one swung around a Japanese sword like some kind of ninja. A round to the triple clamps took care of them, separating the handlebars and the front wheel assembly from the rest of the bike.
That’s gotta hurt.
The bandit problem solved, all we needed to worry about was getting out of town before dark. We then needed a place to spend the night before making the rest of the trip back the next day. Unfortunately for us, it got dark before we were completely out of zombie country. Traveling at night was much too dangerous; a body or piece of wreckage coming at you out of the darkness could put an end to your life very quickly. As such, we found a nice little hill to make camp for the night. It wouldn’t be my first choice in any other situation, by we didn’t really have unlimited options at this point. It was only barely defensible and still within range of the local zombie population.
Sweet dreams, I suppose.
We took turns staying up to watch that night, three sleeping while one stood watch with Kami’s USC. Fortunately the zombies were a bit slow that night and only a few of them had to be put down. That didn’t mean that we got much sleep though. Every time a shot was taken, we woke up. It wasn’t much of a rest, but better than nothing, I guess.
The next morning we found that what seemed like only a few zombies the night before turned out to be around sixty. Apparently my estimation skills are a bit off. No matter, we were in the clear for the rest of the trip back to base. However, once we pulled in outside the entrance, it became apparent that we had missed a good deal of action. About seventy-five zombie corpses lay in the entrance clearing. Either they had picked up the scent of the dead bandits or they had followed someone else in. The answer came when we climbed the hill and entered the camp. Everyone seemed a bit weary, although in good spirits. There was also a new addition, a young guy about my age. He looked like he was from out of state, probably from a big city or something. Well-dressed and unusually clean, he definitely seemed out of place.
I was about to find out how out of place he was.
He seemed a bit surprised when I introduced myself as the Jefe Maximo of New Sparta (Been playing around with different titles. Just trying this one out.). Apparently, he expected to be dealing with someone a bit older and didn’t really give me much respect. When I asked him what kind of guns he was familiar with, he replied that he was opposed to the use of guns.
You’ve got to be kidding me.
I then asked him if he had any survival, medical, or culinary skills. Apparently he had someone back home who did all that for him. The guy had almost zero usefulness, unless you wanted to learn how to write about how the government is conspiring to take over the world.
How this guy survived was beyond me.
I told him that if he wanted to live in New Sparta, he’d have to learn how to shoot a gun at the very least. His reply rhymed with Duck Broth.
That, my friends, is one of the few ways to get on my bad side. But I’m a patient guy and figured that he was just tired from his trip. Unfortunately, I figured wrong. All through that night, he moaned and complained about how dirty the area was and how the food wasn’t worth a crap.
Hey, dude. I like Spaghetti-Os.
Man, if I wasn’t such a nice guy, I would’ve thrown him out the Phalanx and pulled the rope up. This turd comes in outta nowhere and thinks he runs the place. It was beginning to look like I was going to have to assert my authority, something I never wanted to do. The pot finally boiled over the next morning. To keep from having to run over everything quickly, I’ll just re-enact the conversation.
“Hey man? Can you load some of the forty-five clips please?”
“I told you, I ain’t touching a gun!”
“You don’t have to touch the gun. Just put some bullets in the magazines and set ‘em on the gun rack behind you.”
“Nah. I’d rather not. I don‘t feel well enough to do it.”
“Um. Mandy there had a baby a day ago and she seems to be well enough to do it.” Mandy looked over and gave a weary smile.
“Whatever. That baby’s ugly anyways.”’
Bad move, Scooter.
Mandy’s smile turned into a look of utter astonishment. At this point, I ’d had enough of this guy’s crap. Being a lazy piece of trash was one thing. Insulting one of the most hard-working members of the team and her child was another. I marched over to him and gave him my hardest right hook across the jaw, catching him off guard and knocking him into the gun rack. Before I could say anything, he grabbed a .45, pointed it at me, and pulled the trigger.
That would’ve been a problem for me if we kept them loaded. Fortunately, we didn’t.
Out of friggin nowhere, Steve and Corey bust in and basically beat the living crap out of the guy. They were soon joined by the rest of the camp, including the two dogs. I was in no mood to stop them. After a good minute or two, I intervened, stepping in to grab the guy by his collar. I yanked him to his feet and drug him over to the entrance. He cursed and swore as I pulled him along, stopping him at the top of the hill. I let him spit and yell at me, waiting patiently with the whole group behind me. Once he was finished, I politely explained to him that since he couldn’t pitch in and work together with the other Spartans, he was no longer welcome.
When I say “politely explained”, I mean I kicked him down the hill. We all watched as he rolled down, hitting a rock and breaking his legs. On top of that, he rolled right into the mouth of a zombie who’d been paralyzed from the neck down. Unfortunately for him, Zack’s mouth wasn’t paralyzed. It bit down and took a nice chunk out of his side.
KJ had been on Phalanx duty during this incident. I grabbed the Barrett and relieved her, setting up and putting a round through the zombie’s head. Before dismissing the others, I asked them if I was really as bad of a leader as he said I was.
“Sir, No Sir!” Was the response. I smiled and told them not to call me “sir” before dismissing them to go back to what they were doing.
I stayed at the Phalanx for the entire day, watching as the zombie virus slowly took over the guy’s body. He began to scream incoherently about fascists and government conspiracies before entering the zombie coma. I won’t lie, I didn’t feel bad at all for kicking the guy out. I didn’t even know his name and he successfully managed to tick me off.
About four hours later, he started moving again, this time releasing the signature zombie moan instead of his anti-government rhetoric. I sighted him in and pulled the trigger.
Funny how much can happen in three days, isn’t it?
Part 3 is still a ways off. I am happy to say that it will happen during the reclaiming of America.
Cyber78 - May 20, 2007 04:54 AM (GMT)
Bwahaha. I love it. Can't wait for part 3 to get finished.
Pvt Serrano - May 21, 2007 12:18 AM (GMT)
Glad you like it. I have a bunch of other stuff but this is pretty much the only zombie stuff I've written. Probably the mildest stuff too.