Cain here. We made it out of Rushville with no problems. The martial law wasn’t as serious as I made it out to be a few days ago, but I don’t trust the future of that area, so we took off. There are several things I don’t trust anymore. We stopped at a truck stop yesterday to refuel and get some junk food. When I started my trek, I had a total of 6 people with me. All but two of us went in to pee and buy what we buy. There was a TV broadcast coming from a flat screen showing scenes of zombie violence in New York and the surrounding towns. Not a total loss, but I did see a few burning buildings and well…. You know how the news exaggerates on things. As I stood there watching, I noticed two men sitting at a booth, talking. They were dressed peculiarly in such a small town. They stood out like a prostitute at church, but almost like they were trying to. One of them noticed me eves dropping, promptly stood up and approached me. He was wearing all black. Combat boots, a glistening black side arm, black gloves and topped off with a black beret. He was military. I thought instantly that he was ASMZ, but I’m still not sure what branch of government he hailed from.
“Can I help you sir.” He said calmly and with a smile. He reached out to shake my hand but I was hesitant. I heard the familiar hiss and growl of a zombie from outside, but thought nothing of it. Inside my awkward introduction, I knew that zombies existed, and that one was apparently in our close presence. All processing in my mind as I reached out my hand to greet the stranger, thinking…. Someone outside will either kill a zombie today, or have their brains ripped out for me to step over when I leave this hole in the wall convenient store.
He had several ranking pins on his military grade over shirt. One I had not seen before. As he firmly shook my hand, I started processing what the different ranking pins symbolized. He was indeed military. United States Marine Corps if I’m not mistaken. They were spread out in a large block. Different insignias screamed out to me. Military Scuba Diver, Parachutist, Rifle Squad Combat Practice and Competition Badge, Rifle Expert badge and Marine Corps Pistol Expert badge. So I was obviously in the presence of someone well trained and very important. I know the world is falling apart, and that New York is taking a turn for the worse, but I had to fell honored by shaking the hand of someone so important and influential. However, the one badge I had never seen before, was a small narrow bar, white, with a single black upside down triangle. It stood out because of its lack of color. He noticed me focusing on it, and quickly reacted.
“Ha, that’s the only one I can’t tell you about soldier.” He said with a grin. He tightened his grip and gave me a quick slap on my left arm. I said we were passing through on a road trip to the Grand Canyon. I have no idea why I said that. Then, I heard screaming from outside. I let go of his hand, thanked him quickly for his service and started walking around the chip isle so I could see outside better. The man in black sat back down, never taking his eyes off me, and began speaking quietly to his company, who turned around and looked at me through menacing eyes. Weirdos.
I looked out the window and saw the most oddest of things. The two of mine that stayed on the bus were now bashing the brains in of a small group of zombies that shambled in from God knows where. I yelled for my crew, “Let’s go!” By the time we made it outside, there was a miniature battle going on. I ran to my bus and started hacking away with my machete. I put 3 zombs down before noticing the glitter and sequence. These weren’t just any zombies, they were truck stop prostitutes. Ho’s, street walkers. Call them what you will, but in all my days of killing zombies, I had never come across these before. My entire group of 6 were hacking and slashing while laughing and discussing how wild the situation was. They were right. Here we were, in the middle of nowhere, killing whore zombies outside a truck stop. I was retracting my machete from the skull of my final victim and heard a familiar scream. I looked up to see one of my crew getting her neck ripped out. I’ve had many friends fall since the beginning of the zombie Armageddon, but out here, where we’re running to a hopeful and safer place, it’s just bad. Real bad. The zombie acted differently too. There was an evil hunger that made it continue to rip and dig the flesh out with a violent tempo. The rest of my crew went to assist in the kill, but all was lost. Every zombie was killed, and our fallen companion was lying in a pool of blood, holding onto her neck begging to be put down. “SHOOT ME ALREADY YOU PIGS!” Everyone just stood there in shock, so I did it. My pistol is always strapped to me. Her head slightly bumped when I pulled the trigger. I’m glad she never made it to zombie mode, but I still feel awful about her death.
Then we heard something. It came from inside the truck stop. A winding, tinny sound that wound and whirled, getting louder and louder. I squinted and looked harder through the windows into the station. Three (un-zombied) protitutes ran from the side of the building as the sound grew louder and louder. I scream for everyone to “GET IN THE BUS!” I closed the doors but the women were running to us for safety and a way out of the mayhem. Through the windows, and into the station, I saw hell happening.
I put the bus into gear and began to pull away, but the ladies made it to the door. Pounding with bloody fists and screaming bloody murder, my emotions took over. I stopped the bus, pulled the lever and opened the accordion style door. The three women stumbled over each other to get on board. They sat directly behind me on the bench seat and immediately started wiping the blood and black ooze off their arms, face and hair. All the while, I could hear the winding grow and grow from inside the building. I threw the bus into drive and slammed on the pedal to get away.
In the side rear view, I could see zombies begin to pour out of the truck stop, shortly followed by a huge explosion. The sound quickly made it to the bus and rocked us all as the push of the explosion shattered two of the windows. I couldn’t help but continue to glance at the rear view as we drove away. Zombies were thrown in every direction. Some got up and began to walk aimlessly while their bodies burned and popped. I focused on the road, wiped the sweat from my forehead and started my breathing exercises.
A couple team members walked up to the front of the bus. One to stop and help our new ride-alongs, and one to squat next to me to say, “That was crazy, are you good?” I nodded, yes. I gripped the wheel and stroked my beard, cleaning the remnants of someone else’s, or something else’s blood out, then wiping in on my pants. They continued to explain another developing situation.
“ Looks like we’ve got company. There’s a white van. It’s behind us. It’s been there for several miles now. Through my binoculars, I saw a gray, upside down triangle on the hood. I think it’s ASMZ, Cain. What’s your move?”
I looked once more in the rear view. The white van pulled closer and closer, revealing the distinct, upside down triangle on the hood. Be cool, be cool. With everything else going on, I didn’t want to make any sudden moves. So I gripped the wheel, and tried to act normal. The van stayed at a safe distance. I don’t know if it was to not give away who they were, or if something more sinister was happening. My mind was wondering and racing like a formula one car.
One of the new girls coughed and screamed from behind and I took my eyes off the road and the rear view for one second. When I looked back, the white van was gone! From behind me, someone yelled out in a concerned tone, “Cain, we have a problem here!” As that happened, I heard the roar of an engine, and noticed the white ASMZ van pull up next to me. Driving, were the two ass holes I saw inside the truck stop. Glaring at me, they smiled and nodded, then passed me. Through the back window of the van, a man sat, smiling as well. I’ll never forget that smile because his teeth were lined with gold. He held his wrists up (which were duct taped) and shot the double middle finger at me. They pulled off quickly. I could smell the distinct scent of burned diesel fuel. They were going somewhere. I feel they were following us. And I feel that they destroyed the truck stop.
The sight of that van disappearing into the turns of the mountain road ahead, made me feel more at ease; but I knew something wasn’t right. The worst was about to begin though. An elbow swiftly hit me in the back of the head, forcing me to swerve the bus on the two lane highway that twisted through the mountains. A woman screamed, “MEGAN, MEGAN, NO!”
I looked into the horizontally long rearview into the cab of my bus and witnessed one of our new passengers arch her back and bend her body forward as the life of a zombie took over her soul. We should have checked for wounds before anyone got on the bus, but there was so much going on. I didn’t want to just leave them there!
I don’t want to stop short of explaining why there are only two of us left, but there is a humming coming from somewhere. It’s in the sky…. I think. I’ll explain as soon as I can. But I need to investigate. Until then, this is Cain. And we are on our way west.