Owen; the continuation of a story

Zombie or Post Apocalyptic themed fiction/stories.

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Makarov
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Post by Makarov » Tue May 29, 2007 4:46 pm

Good work :D
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Post by doc66 » Tue May 29, 2007 6:20 pm

I posted twice today, so don't forget to read the previous first.

Doc



Owen aimed the MAC at the couch and fired several rounds at the back of it, hoping that whoever was behind the big thing was either now dead or at least very uncomfortable. He was down to his last two mags for the MAC and was now considering a run up the stairs and diving out the window. He was not sure how many people he had shot since downing the two on the deck, but it felt like he should have hit at least a dozen with all the ammo expended. The wall he was crouching behind had started to crumble on the gangbangers side and he was starting to have dust fall on him from the rounds that were breaking through the board on his side. He was thirsty and starting to become frightened. Owen had never been trapped before, even when fighting the undead, he could see the way to escape or overcome, but sitting in the house at the moment, he was not sure if there was a way out. In addition to the shooting in the house, Owen could hear them shooting outside. He wondered just how many of the Zombies were starting to wander up the street, drawn by the noise of the gunfire.

At the moment, there was a lull in the combat, and he took the opportunity to glance up at the landing. The dog was there, but no longer looking at Owen and where he sat defending the interior, instead the dog was now looking at the space where the window was on the landing. With his concussion deadened ears, Owen could hear the dog starting to growl and wondered just what was going on to make the animal act in such a manner. He debated on scooting up the stairs to check, but was not sure if he should abandon his post. Then again, he had been considering just making a break for it. After a quick peek around the corner of the wall, Owen saw that there was a lot of movement back in the shadows of the dining room. The window upstairs suddenly shattered, sending glass and wood into the house and showering the dog who backed away and began to bark.

Swearing, Owen ripped off a fast trigger-pulling burst at the shadows inside the house, then turned a dashed up the stairs, ripping the magazine out of the MAC as he did so. He could see that at the top of the stairs a figure was starting to climb in through the window. The dog launched himself at the shape, snarling and grabbing the extended hand which was reaching into the house for a handhold. A man screamed as the sharp teeth bit through the jacket he wore, tearing at the arm beneath. The vicious growls of the animal filled the house. Below him, Owen heard people running for the stairs,

Shoving the mag into the well, Owen spun and fired the MAC at the first shape to appear at the bottom of the stairs, pulling the trigger several times and hearing the brass hit the walls around him. The bullets took the man in the chest and he fell as if punched to the floor. The next in line pointed a pistol up the well and fired several rounds into the narrow space. One of the bullets hit Owen in the hip and knocked him down, causing him to slide several steps back toward the bottom. The pain lanced through his hip and leg, then up his back, a numbing punch which caused him to catch his breath and his vision to swim. Instinct made Owen fire the subgun at the bottom of the steps and drive the attackers back for a brief second.

Crying out in pain, Owen managed to pull his good leg under himself and regain several of the lost steps. He saw that the dog had pulled the man into the house and was wearing at the arm, not letting go despite the man’s struggles and screams. Another gangbangers was using the now open window to get into the house. Flipping the switch to FULL, Owen let the MAC rip out a large portion of the mag at the man, chewing up the wall and the window frame while riddling the man with the heavy slugs. The body fell into the house, partially in the window, dropping the shotgun it had been aiming at the dog.

Dragging his leg behind, Owen made the top and fell over the mattresses that he had placed there. With his back to them, he shoved them in place at the stairs and at the same time, shot the last man who had climbed up on the roof to flank Owen. The man fell off the roof with a cry, the sound of his hitting the ground lost as Owen dropped the now empty MAC and pulled free his Glocks.

Almost absently, Owen shot the man in the window once in the head and then did the same for the man that the dog had been mauling. The suddenly limp form caused the dog to release and start barking at the body. Owen had no time to ponder this as he leaned up to fire down the stairs.

There were several men rushing to the top. They saw Owen lean over and one started to shoot at the defender. The rounds hits over Owen’s head, digging into the far wall. Owen took aim and with the front sight suddenly on the man’s chest, began to hammer 9mm rounds into the foes body. The bleeding shape fell backwards, still shooting it’s own weapon into the ceiling, and knocked one of the others to the floor. The last in line simply turned and fled the tunnel of death that Owen was creating. Owen adjusted his fire and began to hit the second man as he struggled to remove himself from the tangled body of the first. Both men suddenly stopped moving after they gave several harsh screams as the bullets ripped into them.

Owen dropped the empty Glock from his left hand and pulled a magazine form the belt. While he did so, he dropped the mag from the right hand Glock, loading the weapon and charging it with a smooth motion. He grabbed up the empty and after laying the now full weapon in front of him, reloaded it as well. The wind whistled in through the broken window. Downstairs all was quiet.

Outside, Owen heard the sound of the gangbangers vehicles roaring away. The sound was replaced by a long, hungry moaning emanating from dozens of empty mouths. The sound carried through the house and up the stairs. Owen knew that the lower level of the house was now contaminated by the walking dead. He sat for a moment, stunned by the sudden change of events and felt the blood begin to seep through his clothing. He knew that in another second the pain would hit him; he also knew he had to fight the throbbing in his body if he were to survive. Grabbing a nearby shirt, Owen noticed that it was his old one, he shoved it against the wound and dragged himself upright. He had to pull the stairs off the riser or the entire battle would have been for naught. Fighting back tears and the urge to scream, Owen leaned against the wall and gathered his energy for the task. The dog came up to him and licked at his hand.

“Good boy, Buddy,” encouraged Owen, the animal taking his mind off the wound for a brief moment. “You’re a good dog.”

He looked down the stairs and already heard the shuffling of the undead in the kitchen. He hoped that the barriers he had created were still in place; they would give him a moment of time to maybe get his task finished. Owen glanced down at the dog, which seemed to be gazing at him with a worried expression.

“Yeah, ya gotta right to be worried, Buddy,” admitted Owen. He remembered that Cole had said that the stairs were held on with just simple nails and could be taken up in a hurry if needed. He just didn’t know which stairs were held in this manner. Looking around he spied a crowbar on the floor. Limping over, Owen fought a wave of nausea to pick the thing up. Once in hand he caught his breath again and started down the stairs with the dog looking on. Carefully, Owen tested each step he came to and tried to pull them up with the crowbar. Finally, near the bottom, he found his first step.

Glancing around the corner, Owen saw that the undead were in the dining room and trying to get around the couch. Thankfully the things were not smart enough to push at the barrier with any effort, they simply tried to walk over it, succeeding in falling down on the couch. While it worked for the moment, soon, one of them would fall into the living room and be at the stairs. Glancing at the two dead men, Owen wondered if he should shoot them in the head to keep them from coming back while he worked. Deciding that he did not want to make any more noise than he had to, Owen settled for beating both of them in the head until the skulls cracked open. It was bloody work and he was spattered with gore by the time it was finished. The motion and noise made the Zombies all call out to him, spurring Owen on to ripping up the steps, even though his hip was blinding him with each sharp twist of his body. The blood was running freely down his leg, soaking his new jeans, making him dizzy with the loss. Gritting his teeth, determined to live, Owen set the crowbar n the first step and pried it up.

It came surprisingly easy.

Owen tossed it aside and then hit the next step which came up with little effort as well. He was glad they had not given way when he was in the middle of a firefight; the space emptied directly into the basement and it was a bone breaking drop if one was not ready for it. After taking out four steps, Owen realized he was standing on the wrong side of the hole he was creating. He clenched his jaw and grabbed the handrail. Using his good leg, Owen gathered all his strength and jumped up to the next step.

The platform teetered and rocked under his foot. Throwing his weight forward, Owen felt the step slip off the riser and heard it clatter to the basement. Dropping the crowbar and grasping at the stairs above. He felt himself sliding backwards.

Nails scratching, Owen willed himself to stop falling, feeling the wood under his fingers splinter as the pain lanced up his body from the bullet wound. He still had a hold of the rail with his other hand and the wrenching of the fall sent shock waves up his arm and into his shoulder. With a mighty effort, Owen managed to pull his body out of the hole and onto the steps. He scrambled with his good leg to get off the next step, which was starting to give as well, and pushed up the stairs to firmer ground.

Panting with the effort and in pain, Owen saw the first of the undead round the corner to the steps. The thing gave a high snarl on seeing Owen, its undead eyes seeming to glow in the dim light, and stepped into oblivion. The body hit the basement steps, tumbled down them to lay still for a moment. It began to screech on discovering that it could not move; the fall had snapped its brittle legs. Glancing over his shoulder, Owen saw the dog staring at him.

“I’m so fucked, up,” said Owen as the pain made his eyes water.

The dog whined. Another Zombie stepped off the landing and crashed to the basement.

“What are we gonna do when it fills up?” asked Owen to the dog.

The dog cocked its head in answer.

“Yeah,” Owen dragged himself to the top of the stairs and again rolled over the mattresses. He looked at the two bodies in disgust. “Can you push them over for me?”

The dog sat down and blinked at Owen.

Owen dragged his BOB toward him and dug through it. The blood was seeping now, not a full run like it had been, but he knew he had to get his jeans off and clean around the hole. He did not feel any blood on his butt or back, so that meant the bullet was still lodged inside his hip. Struggling past the pain, Owen unbuckled his gunbelt and pulled his pants down making himself examine the wound. It seemed to be what the movies would call a clean wound, a perfect circle in his flesh from which the blood flowed. Tearing the jeans away from it had caused it to start bleeding again. Digging through the BOB, Owen came up with his First Aid kit. From it he pulled out three items, duct tape, a gauze pad and finally, a tampon. They had all been instructed in the use of a tampon as a bullet hole plug. Owen had felt funny learning how to use the thing, and along with all the guys had joked quite crassly about having them in their kits, but now, Owen wished he had paid a little better attention. He cleaned it the best he could with the wipes and gritted his teeth at the self inflicted pain, then picked up the tampon.

Contemplating the round mass, Owen took a deep drink from the water bottle; his mouth was drying out and that meant he was loosing fluids at too fast a rate. He needed to keep replenishing them as often as he could. He also needed a sports drink to help him along, but for the moment, water was all he had. Taking a deep breath, Owen uncovered the tampon and carefully plugged the hole.

No one had described how much it would hurt.

He was sure that he passed out for a moment.

The dog woke him with a worried whine and a swipe of his tongue.

“I’m fine,” lied Owen.

Owen managed to cover the wound with the gauze pad and tape it in place. He took the last of his pain killers and drank all his water. He knew he should find more, but at the moment, he just couldn’t bring himself to move any further. His body was cold, the open window cooling him off as he lay. Owen summoned his strength and with the dog trotting worriedly at his side, crawled into the room where all the supplies were stacked. Owen grabbed several bottles of something to drink and after finishing off one of them, pulled a blanket over his shivering body. The dog lay down beside him, pressing against his body in an effort to share the warmth. Owen tossed the blanket over the dog as well, ignoring the stink.

“Soon as this is over, you’re gettin’ a bath, Buddy,” said Owen.

If the dog replied, Owen didn’t hear it. He passed out with the undead marching into the hole to the basement.
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Post by AwPhuch » Wed May 30, 2007 12:09 pm

Dang..he gets more and more messed up!

I hope the calvary comes soon...he sure could use the backup!

Kick ass though!
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Post by ZacharyDanger » Wed May 30, 2007 3:29 pm

You're spoiling us with these back-to-back posts.

...I love it.
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Post by Gregoriev » Sat Jun 02, 2007 12:52 pm

This is a great story.

I love the whole setup, but I think that the main character should invest in a nice rifle.
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Post by Gun_Nut_2k1 » Sat Jun 02, 2007 12:56 pm

Gregoriev wrote:This is a great story.

I love the whole setup, but I think that the main character should invest in a nice rifle.
Stop right there! No AK vs AR debates!! PLEASE! :wink:
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Oneswunk wrote:Interesting idea, but I still prefer the feel of wood in my hands.
tarzan wrote:Not a sound argument for having wood, in my opinion.
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Post by Gregoriev » Sat Jun 02, 2007 1:04 pm

I just said a rifle, never specified which one...


but you all know which one I mean...

:P

EDIT: One fo those AR/AK pistols would be neat. Their more powerful and more accurate than any MAC-11 could ever be.
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Post by doc66 » Mon Jun 04, 2007 10:17 pm

Funny about the rifles...

When I first started thinking about Owen he was running around with a Krinkov-style AK with a side folder. Then when I sat down to write him he was toting the MAC. Sometimes the characters just write themselves despite your best intentions.

Anyway, I was out motorcycle riding this weekend, now that I've put 2000 more miles on the thing, I'll get back to the story.

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Post by Gun_Nut_2k1 » Tue Jun 05, 2007 12:31 am

doc66 wrote:Funny about the rifles...

When I first started thinking about Owen he was running around with a Krinkov-style AK with a side folder. Then when I sat down to write him he was toting the MAC. Sometimes the characters just write themselves despite your best intentions.

Anyway, I was out motorcycle riding this weekend, now that I've put 2000 more miles on the thing, I'll get back to the story.

Doc
Bro keep the MAC. Just would not be the same with an AK. Keep the rubber side down and watch those Cages. They be blind muthers.
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Oneswunk wrote:Interesting idea, but I still prefer the feel of wood in my hands.
tarzan wrote:Not a sound argument for having wood, in my opinion.
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Post by doc66 » Thu Jun 07, 2007 4:07 pm

He wished that who ever it was would quit pounding on the wall or door, it was annoying and making the dog upset.

The dog was barking to go out again and Owen wondered why his mom wouldn’t let the dog out. It was Saturday after all and he’d been out drinking the night before, she knew this, even had warned him to not get caught. She was a great mom. He felt like shit and his butt was cold. He wished that the old furnace would just kick on and stay on.

The dog was barking and someone was yelling at him.

“Jesus Christ,” swore Owen and tried to get up to let the dog out.

His arms felt like logs and his hip was on fire. He didn’t remember falling on it, but anything could have happened as drunk as he had been. The blanket was wrapped around his shoulders, no wonder his butt was cold, and he struggled to get them untangled. The effort sapped his strength and left him gasping for breath.

Had he wet the bed?

Why were his pants around his ankles?

Prying open his eyes, Owen did not recognize his room.

Was he moving? There were a lot of boxes in the room.

Got he was hot.

Why was his ass so cold…?



Emma pulled out the AR and directed the Hummer down the proper street. Jesse and Cole were riding as gunners as was Mike and Owen’s friend, Hank. The man seemed to be perpetually stoned, but Emma found herself liking the odd neo-hippy despite her efforts to find the man a nuisance. Jay, one of the original Highlanders, was driving and cursing the snowy roads. Everyone else had gone ahead to the Base. Kyle had wanted to ride with Emma and Mike, since they were the only people he knew at the moment, but she had pulled rank on him and made him ride to the Base to direct them to the supply area and ammo dump. He had not been happy, but he had nodded and climbed into the other Hummer without any more protesting than any normal person would have done. She hoped they would find the Base fairly empty and have an easy time of getting the food stuffs and weapons she envisioned were there. Kyle had been very helpful in providing her with what had been at the Base while he had been there.

They rolled up the street and Emma was chagrined to see that there were close to a hundred undead in the street and near the house; in fact many of the Zombies seemed to be focused on the garage area of the house. Swearing to herself, Emma pointed to the driveway of the house.

“Pull it in there.”

Jay looked over at her as if she had suddenly lost her mind. He adopted his fake brogue to question her. “In thar where those things are all gatherin’?”

“The same.”

“D’ya want me ta honk th’ horn an’ gently push them aside, Boss, or run ‘em down all hell-bent?” he asked with sarcasm dripping from his words.

“Hell-bent,” said Emma. “Unless you think that honking the horn will get them to move.”

Shutting his mouth on his next comment, Jay nodded and picked up speed while Jesse, Cole and Hank readied their suppressed weapons. The weapon Cole handled belonged to Hannah; she had loaned it to him as long as he had promised to come back alive and bring it back with him. Emma had been surprised to see that the Lodge had made quite an industry out of the manufacture of suppressors for their firearms. She fully intended to have them make several for her own crew as soon as they had the haul she intended from the area. They would have the barter they needed by that time as well as the materials that would be required to manufacture the cans. She had secured one more of the screw on cans for the weapon that Mike would use to protect the Hummer. To communicate, she had also had Jay with a child’s walkie-talkie and one for herself to communicate.

Since the Lodge people were the ones with the most silenced weapons, the three would be leading the charge against the undead. Emma and her bunch were to provide back-up and cover their escape. She assigned Jay and Mike to this task since she wanted to be a part of Owen’s recovery. Emma smiled at the word, she had picked it up from Kyle who had used it to describe their little mission. He told her that they didn’t rescue people, they recovered them. Gripping the handle on the door post, Emma gritted her teeth as the undead began to thump off the front of the Hummer, bones cracking and flesh tearing on the pushbars at the front of the vehicle. Dark blood spatter across the windshield when a skull seemed to explode off the hood of the Humvee, making everyone in the cab wince and groan as the wipers smeared the vicious fluid across the glass.

Even with the aggressive tires, the Hummer was sliding on the snowy surface and threatening to spin out of control. Glancing across the cab, Emma could see Jay gritting his teeth and at what seemed to be the last minute, he hauled at the wheel and sent the Humvee careening up into the drive, corpse’s and parts of bodies thumping off the vehicles creating a swath of destruction that left the undead reeling away from the vehicle as it slid to a stop with the hood nearly in the garage. Even as it was stopping, Mike was standing out of the hatch and readying himself to fire his M4 into the crowd of ghouls that were slowly adjusting to the arrival of the vehicle.

As per the plan they had discussed on the way to the house, they all bailed out of the Hummer on the passenger’s side of the vehicle. There were several Zombies trapped between the big 4x4 and the fence, these were quickly dispatched by Jesse and Hank with the silenced weapons while Emma and Cole rushed to the garage. Slipping past the hood of the big vehicle, Emma found herself face to face with a rather large and nasty looking Zombie. The thing appeared to be freshly dead as it had most of its flesh still intact. However, it had several holes running up its chest and neck, causing its head to hang at an odd angle. The things jaws snapped shut with authority on its sensing Emma’s presence.

Emma, knowing that Cole was coming close behind, kept at the ghoul, raising her carbine as she moved, The Zombie held out its arms as if to embrace her, growling its welcome and drawing the attention of the dozens of other undead in the small space. The smell of the slowly rotting bodies was over powering in her nostrils. Triggering the carbine, Emma let her round take the thing in the shoulder, moving to the front of the Hummer as Cole came through the narrow space. The round served to do little more then cause the thing to stagger and hiss at her. She shouldered the carbine and shot the big beast twice in the head, but had little time to enjoy her success as its place was taken by two more of the monsters. Cole joined her in shooting the undead in the room, his silenced weapon drawing little attention, but the heat of his flesh causing the things to erupt in an ear rendering howl. Behind Cole, Jesse began to add his fire to theirs, the undead seemingly an unending stream of groaning targets. Emma felt the dry hands of one of the ghouls grasp her arm and she tried to wrench the thing loose. Its deadly strength caused it to simply latch tighter to her arm and squeeze at the flesh beneath.

Giving a shout of her own to counter the howl of the beast, Emma leaned away from the things gaping mouth. The broken teeth of the fiend seized the leather of her jacket and began to shake the sleeve as would a dog. She found herself being shaken off balance as the thing tugged and pulled at her, trying to wear her down to the floor of the garage. Emma tried to swing the M4 to shoot the ghoul in the head, but its jerking at her arm threatened to haul to off her feet. Dropping the M4 and letting it fall to the length of the sling, Emma struggled to draw her .45, the incessant pull of the undead drawing her into the crowd of others where hands began to clutch at her hair and clothing. Screaming her frustration at the thing, Emma felt the fear begin to form in the pit of her stomach as the undead attempted to initiate her into their ranks.

Her hand grasped the rubber grip of her Smith ad Wesson, yanking the compact .45 free of the holster even as a second Zombie’s fetid breath brushed her cheek in an attempt to tear her flesh. Emma shoved the heavy pistol under the things snapping jaws and pulled the trigger. The weapon boomed, flaying the papery flesh away from white jaws as the echo exploded out the top of the things head. As it fell, she shot the thing off her arm, feeling the shock of the bullet as it rippled through the tissue and bone. The broken teeth shattered and released their hold on her jacket. As successful as her shots were, another grabbed her hair and yanked her head back for the bite on her skull.

Emma felt the teeth scrape through her stocking hat and into the hair beneath, struggling to find a purchase in the thin skin beneath the layers. Shrieking with rage and fear, Emma gave a hard pull that released her head from the grip of the beast, feeling her hair tear out from the roots. She stumbled against another of the things, pushed away from it before it could grasp her and shot it in the face, triggering the big .45 twice before turned back to the ghoul that had tried to bite her head. She saw that it was still gnawing at the hat that had become stuck in its maw, the clawed hands pulling at the fabric, strands of her hair caught between fingers as it tore at the cover. Emma shot it in the forehead, her round leaving a blackened hole from the near contact shot. Not bothering to watch it fall, Emma turned back to the interior of the garage to see that Cole was putting down the last of the undead in the space.

The bodies were piled two and three thick in places, all of them were spattered with gore. Jesse scanned the group for visible signs of injury, then ask if everyone was all right. After getting each person to give affirmative, he nodded to the open door leading to the back yard. Cole took up the lead again and stepped into the snowy area with his own rifle at ready. Emma heard it begin its muffle popping as the undead that had not made it to the garage shuffled and staggered at him. He side stepped the doorway to let the others join him in the yard. Jesse and Hank added their fire to his and before Emma could step through, the task was complete. Most of the undead had made their stand in the garage, the few left were the ones barely able to negotiate the drifts to the doorway.

Glancing over her shoulder, Emma could see that Mike was having a hard time holding the crush of the undead back from the small space left by the Hummer. Tapping Cole on the shoulder, she motioned for him to get moving.

The door to the house had been forced open and was hanging dejectedly to one side of the opening. The three of them flowed through the opening, each of them shooting Zombies as if they were targets in a video game; the glazed eye of the undead would appear as would the stench of their decay and someone would shoot it away just as another would take its place. Thus clearing the way to the stairs, they were surprised to find the two dead gang bangers at the foot of the stairs.

“Looks like Owen had company while we were gone,” commented Jesse.

The steps beyond the dead gangbangers were gone, leaving the opening into the basement. Emma stared down into the basement and saw the dead littering the floor of the basement, some staggering on broken limbs, some crawling, others walking and howling in frustration. It seemed that there was just no room left for another Zombie to fall. She wondered aloud what would happen when the basement reached its maximum capacity.

“More importantly, how do we get across?” wondered Hank, joining her in staring into the depths of the milling creatures. They looked at Cole for an answer. He seemed as perplexed as they were.

“I ever thought about having to get across it,” he admitted. “I figured if they reached this point, I was pretty well fucked.”

“We can jump it,” decided Jesse.

“I ain’t jumpin’ it,” announced Hank. “If I fall back…” he didn’t need to finish the sentence. The statement was punctuated by the moaning hiss of several of the trapped undead as they realized that prey was just out of reach above them. The ghouls began to press against the walls in an effort to find a way to them.

“I can’t,” decided Emma.

“We’ll throw the couch over it,” decided Cole.

They drug the couch over and tipped it across the space. It hit the steps on the other side with a hollow boom, raising an answer from below.

Hank peered past the couch. “Now I know what Hell must look and sound like--.”

“Who’s goin’ first?” he asked the group.

“I will,” said Cole.

Jesse and Hank held the couch steady while Cole began o climb across the wobbly bridge. He reached the steps and turned to grin at them. “It’s not that hard--,” he started to say and nearly fell when the dog began to bark and snarl at him.

Emma couldn’t help but laugh. It came out in a burst of nervous energy that made the others stare at her. She quickly cut the noise off and shrugged. “Whose dog is it?”

“Not mine,” said Cole, staring at the flashing teeth several steps above him.

“Shoot it,” advised Jesse.

“No!” snapped Emma. They looked at her. “Maybe it’s protecting Owen.”

“Where is he?”

“Hurt?” she feared. She shouted Owen’s name up the steps. There was a groaning answer. “We need to get him.”

Cole stared at the snarling animal. “We’re not getting past that with our shooting it.”

Emma began to climb across the couch. “We’re not shooting it.”

She reached the other side and stepped around Cole. The dog snarled at her, showing a mouthful of white, sharp teeth. The Zombies had nothing on this animal in the way of fearsome growls and dangerous jaws. She held out a hand. “Hey, Buddy.”

The animal paused in its barking.

“Hey, Buddy, does Owen need help?” she asked, taking a step up. The dog started barking and growling again. She stopped and considered her next move. Her boyfriend before the Plague had been a sheriff’s deputy, and he had told her once about K9 officers, that when the handler was injured, someone had to let the dog attack them so that they could get to the officer. He had given her this bit of information because his best friend in the force was a K9 and it was his job to take the bite should it come to that. She considered the leather and armor of her motorcycle jacket; was it thick enough to prevent the animal’s teeth from puncturing into her arm below? Getting to Owen was more important at the moment, she decided. She hoped that the dog’s attack would not knock her and the animal off the stairs to the massed undead below.

Taking a deep breath, Emma grabbed the hand rail and charged up the stairs at the dog, offering her arm as its target. She heard the others shout at her to stop, but with her mind made up, she ducked her head in a determined way and held the arm forward. The animal did as she expected and took the proffered arm, its jaws clamping down on the heavy leather. The shock of the animals attack almost sent her reeling off the stairs, but her grip on the rail saved her. She had never felt the bite of a dog before and for a moment there was nothing but the numbness of the arm as the heavy jaws clamped down, then the pressure of the animal’s teeth took over and Emma thought she would never feel her arm whole again. The dog twisted on her arm, its teeth cutting through the leather and into the armor below. It jerked her off the steps and over the mattresses piled at the top, shaking her body while doing so.

Emma had to wonder at her own sanity.

Still pulling at her, the dog yanked at her arm, each tug making her feel as if her arm was being pulled clear of the socket. She was aware of Jesse and the others topping the stairs, but all she could concentrate on was keeping her arm intact and the sudden warmth of blood that was beneath the dogs still worrying jaws. SH was aware of Jesse grabbing the dog, but it would not let go of her. Jesse placed his hands around the animals neck and began to squeeze.

“Don’t kill him!” she heard herself say. Why she wasn’t sure, it was some of the most intense pain she had ever felt.

“I’m just choking him out to get him off,” growled Jesse at her as the dogs attack lessened. The animal finally relaxed and Jesse took a belt offered to him by Cole. He put the belt on the dog’s neck and then secured the belt to a door. Emma hoped it would hold the animal.

“Is Owen up here?” She hoped that her actions weren’t for nothing.

Hank appeared, his face looking pale and sick. “Yeah, but he don’t look too good.”

Emma struggled to her feet and pushed past the man, the fear rising in her throat. On seeing him, she groaned out a low curse.

He had been shot and was lying nearly naked on the floor, at some point he had attempted to dress his wound and the soggy dressing was still over the injury. He had soiled himself, and the smell assaulted her as she stepped into the room. She fell to her knees and looked up at Cole.

“Get me towels and water, we need to clean him up.”

Cole rushed to do as bid and Jesse knelt beside her, carefully checking the dressing. He pulled the cover away, exposing the tampon stuck in the bullet wound.

“We’ll leave that for more qualified people,” decided Jesse, removing the soiled cover. Cole returned with the towels and water. Emma radioed to Jay that they had Owen and his condition, then began to clean Owen as Jesse recovered the wound.

Owen suddenly came to.

“Ow.” He tried to focus on Emma. “I thought ya’ll’d left me.”

“Not a chance.”

He saw Cole. “Ya’ll did leave me. I ought’a kill ya.”

Cole said nothing. Emma looked at Cole and then back at Owen. “He though you were on board, Owen. He came back.”

“Where’s my dog?”

“That vicious thing’s yours?”

“We have an understanin’,” informed Owen. “I feed him and he don’t bite me.”

Emma cleaned Owen’s body with a small smile. “He got a name?”

Owen gasp as she hit a tender spot, of which there were many. “I’m gonna love him and squeeze him,” said Owen, “and call him George.”

“Well, George nearly took my arm off,” informed Emma. She looked up at Owen only to find he had passed out again. She gestured to his clothing. “Strip him down, get his gear and boots, we’ll put him in a sleeping bag and get him out of here,” she told the others.

“Are we taking him back to the Lodge?”

Emma shook her head. “I’ve got two nurse’s on my crew on the way to the Base, it’s closer, we’ll take him there.”

Nodding, they set about gathering up Owen’s gear and stripping him of his filthy clothing. Emma helped as best she could but her arm was starting to stiffen from the dogs attack. For his part, the dog, George, apparently, was much more subdued now that he was belted to a door. The animal continued to watch them carefully and growl occasionally when one of them seemed to be treating Owen with less than courteous behavior, but for the most part, as long as they stayed away form him he ignored them in turn. Feeling sorry for the animal, Emma filled a nearby pot with water and pushed it at the dog. The animal stared at her and then at the water, finally conceding to drink while still watching her every movement. Jesse came over as she squatted watching the animal.

Emma looked up at him and nodded to the dog. “How are we going to get him in the Hummer?”

“The dog?” demanded Jesse. “You’re kiddin’ right?”

“No,” decided Emma after a second, “I’m not.”

Jesse paused to give her a chance to change her mind. On seeing she was not going to, her shrugged. “I suppose I can choke him out again--.”

“Let’s try and see if he’ll come on his own, first,” nixed Emma. She glanced over to where Hank was loading Owen’s belongings into a plastic box. Most of those consisted of the weapons, but he had also added Owen’s battered leather jacket and the two pair of boots along with the Bug Out Bag. “We ready?”

“Ready,” said Hank. They had trundled Owen into a sleeping bag and put the bag on a piece of side board from a bed. It was just long and wide enough to support him. Lashing him to the board with more belts, Jesse and Cole picked him up and with Hank carrying the box, Emma lead the way down the stairs after carefully reaching to unhitch George. The dog backed away from her and stared from the safety of the bathroom where they had tied him. She tried to reassure the animal, but he simply looked at her suspiciously. Giving up on encouraging the animal, she radioed that they were coming back out.

“Better make it fast, there’s getting to be too many for us to hold off, that suppressor is about shot out.” As if to punctuate the report, she could hear the dull thump of Mike’s AR.

Emma signed off and slide across the couch.

Hank came next and after putting down his load, took the end of the board as thye handed Owen across. There was a tense moment when it seemed that the couch would topple off the steps but it settled and the exchange was made. Once Jesse and Cole were across, they reclaimed their burden. Just as they started to exit the living room, the dog shot down the steps and across the couch, sending it toppling into the basement with one end still propped against the steps. The animal cleared it just as it fell, hitting the massed undead below and causing them to begin howling at an even greater crescendo. Emma saw one of them begin to clutch at the fabric of the thing and try to drag itself up the incline.

The dog made a beeline for the door.

They followed.

“Use the gate,” puffed Cole. “It’s barred from this side and all you have to do is lift the bar. It’ll dump us right out at the Hummer.”

Emma nodded and got on the radio to tell Jay. “Is the drive clear at the rear of the Humvee?”

“For the moment, there’s about fifteen coming up the drive,” he informed.

“Get ready,” she said and stepped outside into the colder air of the backyard. She could hear the loud pops of the AR working to keep the area clear. The dog was waiting on the deck for them, and once they were there, it darted through the door into the garage. Emma went to the gate and lifted the heavy bar, tossing it aside. She threw open the gate, finding herself looking at the doors to the Hummer. Mike saw the movement and turned toward her, his eye a slit over the barrel of the rifle he held. Emma stopped and held up a hand.

“Shit, Boss,” he said and turned away.

Picking up the M4 from the end of the sling, Emma stepped to the rear corner of the Hummer and added her fire to that of Mike’s. In moments they had the drive cleared, but others, many other Zombies, were staggering toward the house. Emma wondered if they were going to be able to make it out. Hank pushed past her and lifted the gate to the cargo area of the Hummer. Jesse and Cole carried the moaning Owen passed her and shoved him quickly into the rear of the vehicle, Hank followed with Owen’s gear and just as they were about to close the gate, the dog came at a dead run and leapt into the cargo area, landing fully on Owen, who let out a shout and a groan. Rather than fight the animal again, they slammed the gate shut on Hank and the dog them the rest loaded into the vehicle, securing the armored doors while Mike dropped down through the hatch.

The suppressor was smoking and he unscrewed the can, dropping it to the floorboard. “Glad that’s done,” he said. He sniffed the air. “What’s that smell?”

“This damn dog,” said Hank from the cargo area.

Mike turned to look at the animal who barred his teeth at the man. “Jesus, it doesn’t just stink, it’s mean too?”

Emma showed him the sleeve of her jacket which had puncture marks in the leather.

“So why are we keeping it?”

“Apparently it belongs to Owen.”

Hank looked at the dog, which was now seated beside Owen and keeping a watchful eye on Hank and the others. The dog curled its lip at Hank, showing the even teeth behind.

“I think it’s more Owen belongs to the dog,” said Hank.

Not caring one way or the other, Jay turned to Emma. “Where to, Boss?”

“The Base,” she said. “We’ve got two nurses there and hopefully they’ve managed to get where they need to go. Have you heard anything from them?”

“Not been on that channel,” admitted Jay, “I was more worried about what was happening inside that house.”

Emma nodded as he put the Hummer in reverse and floored it. She once more grabbed onto the available handhold as he turned the wheel hard and slid sideways out into the street, the bodies of the undead thumping off the sides and bumpers of the Humvee. Grinding the thing into drive, he once more floor it, spinning the tires until they caught and sent the thing barreling down the street while Jesse gave direction. Once on the main road where there were less obstacles to endanger them, Emma turned the channel on the little handheld.
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Post by Gregoriev » Thu Jun 07, 2007 4:54 pm

Good stuff.

Is the girl infected now?
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Post by AwPhuch » Thu Jun 07, 2007 5:04 pm

Sweet..calvary to the rescue!

Most awesome...now they can patch up Owen..give him some R&R and in no time he will be back to blasting zeds with his MAC

Most awesome!
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Post by ZacharyDanger » Fri Jun 08, 2007 1:21 am

Glad to see we're back in the swing of things! With great action to boot.
Gregoriev wrote:Good stuff.

Is the girl infected now?
That what I thought too when I first read that part. Read it again, it didn't break the skin.
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Post by nemesys » Fri Jun 08, 2007 1:33 am

cool addition
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Post by doc66 » Sat Jun 09, 2007 6:48 pm

It was as if the world had suddenly gone silent. In all her years of living in the Heart of it All, she could not remember a snow like this this close to Thanksgiving. The weather had suddenly taken a nasty turn for the worst, dumping huge amounts of snow on the area in a thick curtain that slowed their progress to a crawl that left them straining to see beyond the hood of the Hummer. Every now and again, a Zombie would appear out of the swirling snow, a shadowy apparition that would turn blind eyes to the growl of the vehicle just in time to bounce off the push bars of the heavy transport, disappearing back into the blinding snow, lost from view. Tongue in cheek, Jay had wondered just where the Global Warming was when they needed it. He had been reminded that as long as there was snow and cold weather, the undead would fail to gather in the massive hordes that they had been seeing up until Mother Nature paid her chilly visit.

Luckily, the crawl was taking them straight through the center of town, a path that would also lead them to the Base, which was on the north edge of the city in an industrial area which Emma remembered as being a Trade Free Zone or something. As they rolled along, she worked the stiffness in her arm and shoulder, feeling the small puncture wounds left by the dog tightening up as they clotted. She had not told anyone about the animal’s success in reaching her skin, but she would have one of her crew look at it when she had a moment. Glancing out the window, Emma took in the remains of the city where she had once lived. She was able to see the lower floors of the downtown buildings, and they were mostly shells of what they had been, fires and looting having taken their toll on the business. The undead seemed to huddle in the overhangs, staggering out as they passed only to be left standing in the snow as the cold and falling flakes confused whatever ability they had to detect the vehicle once it was beyond them. This phenomenon had manifested itself many times during thunderstorms and heavy rains, causing them all to speculate on the significance of the occurrence.

“I think it’s like a ESP-thing,” said Hank from where he was keeping an eye on Owen and conversely, the dog was keeping an eye on him. “You know, like they have this sense that makes them detect our blood an the rain and shit fucks it up.”

“How is sensin’ blood ESP?” asked Jesse.

“I said it’s like ESP,” countered Hank.

“Wouldn’t it be more like radar?” wondered Mike.

“Naw, radar doesn’t work on blood or stuff, it just shows blips,” put in Jay. “Like in the movies; those screens with the blips.”

“Yeah, but if we’re moving, than our blips would show up, if there’s a lot of interference, than the blips are messed up,” answered Mike. “Early radar was like that, weather and shit fucked it up.”

“I remember that they used to drop foil to mess it up--,” returned Jay.

“Wasn’t that for protection against missles?”

“What if they operate like that?” asked Emma suddenly, glad to be able to ignore the pain in her arm.

Everyone looked at her.

“They sense the heat of our bodies and can target that, the cold and rain, screws it up because our bodies signature it muted by the weather?”

“Like crude thermal imaging?

“Sure,” she agreed.

They thought about this for a second.

“Beats ESP,” said Jesse.

“There’s nothing wrong with my idea,” pouted Hank. “Besides, what exactly do they use to detect the heat? What part of the body is a heat sensor?”

“The penis,” joked Jay. He got his expected laugh for that.

After the laughter died down, Hank continued, “Seriously, dudes, just how do they do it? They’re dead for fucks sake. There’s nothing in our bodies that does that now, man, why would being dead make them any different than us?”

“I think because they’re dead is what would make them different than us,” said Emma.

Hank shook his head. “I don’t by that; there’s got to be something more to it--.”

“And ya think that ESP is the answer?” demanded Jesse.

Hank sighed and sat back. “Dude, it makes as much sense as the dead suddenly walkin’ around.”

There seemed to be no argument for that. They fell into a silence that weighed heavily on the mood inside the cab.

“How’s Owen?” asked Emma.

“Hot,” informed Hank. “He’s restless and sweating. I think that bullet’s still in him. But I know as much about that as I know about Zombies.”

Emma looked around at their location and tried to decipher where they were. “I don’t think it’s much further—no, there’s the BP station, another couple miles.”

“Can you raise them yet?” asked Jay, indicating the handheld radio.

Emma thumbed the toggle and gave her call sign. There was no answer. “I don’t know if we’re out of range, if it’s the weather, or if they’re not listening.” Jay looked over at her for a brief second. “Okay, they should be listening,” she agreed. “Maybe it’s just the weather.”

“Those things suck,” said Mike.

“I’ll try again in just a second.”

The electronic box in her hand squawked. Emma answered it with a relieved tone. The crew member confirmed that they had made it to the Base and despite the storm, were loading several trucks that had been on the Base. Emma told her to have the nurses standing by and signed off.

The Hummer was suddenly beyond the city limits and running along the road to the turn off for the Base. Ahead, she knew there was a State-run prison, and wondered just what had happened to the 3000 inmates inside the fencing. Death Row was here; did the entire facility become a death row, or had they joined the ranks of the walking dead in the city? She strained to see through the flakes, but succeeded only in seeing the sign that announced the presence of the correctional facilities walls. Then, they were turning off the main road onto the industrial pathway to the airport and the Base. The Harley Davidson dealership stood guard at the mouth of the turn off and Jesse sucked in his breath at the sight of the building, nestled in the snow.

“Damn, I wonder just what’s left in there?”

“What’ do you want?” asked Emma.

“The Night Train, blacked out with a pair of saddlebags and apehangers.”

“Well, if we have room, maybe we can get one on the way out,’ said Emma.

“Gee, Mom, you think?”

Emma grinned and turned in her seat. “Jesse, I’m serious.”

He gaped for a moment and then gave a barking laugh. “Lady, I think you really are.”

They roared past the dealership and then up the street to the Base, stopping outside the wrought-iron fencing at the front of the facility. There was a car running and two of her crew stepped out of it to open the gate. Waving to her, they motioned that she should follow them.

Looking around at the area, she commented that it looked secure.

“That’s ‘cause we can’t see the dead bodies under the snow, Boss” decided Jay. “You can feel them under the tires if you’re driving.”

Emma declined to do so and settled back, glad to be safe with her crew once again.
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Post by hunter :( » Sat Jun 09, 2007 8:50 pm

As they rolled along, she worked the stiffness in her arm and shoulder, feeling the small puncture wounds left by the dog tightening up as they clotted. She had not told anyone about the animal’s success in reaching her skin, but she would have one of her crew look at it when she had a moment.
Now that is a cliff hanger set in the first paragraph...


Great job.
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Post by AwPhuch » Sat Jun 09, 2007 9:30 pm

Nah...I douby emma would be infected, if the dog didnt turn when he ate them then the enzymes in his mouth obviously killed the virus before it bit her

Now if she got a massive infection or rabies..thats a different story

Now its Owens turn to save her...story keeps rockin along man...keep it up

Awesome!!!
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Post by hunter :( » Sun Jun 10, 2007 2:33 am

AwPhuch wrote:Nah...I douby emma would be infected, if the dog didnt turn when he ate them then the enzymes in his mouth obviously killed the virus before it bit her

Now if she got a massive infection or rabies..thats a different story

Now its Owens turn to save her...story keeps rockin along man...keep it up

Awesome!!!
Dog bites Zed, dog licks ass, dog bites Emma...does dog ass juice kill zed infection??? The author shall be the judge.
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Post by Makarov » Sun Jun 10, 2007 4:22 am

hunter wrote:Dog bites Zed, dog licks ass, dog bites Emma...does dog ass juice kill zed infection??? The author shall be the judge.
Ooh, the cure for zombie infection, dog ass juice...

Doc, it's great to see you're up to your posting speed again, I love it when there's a new section out whenever I check out Art. Keep it coming :D
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Post by PistolPete » Sun Jun 10, 2007 7:18 pm

Great as usual.

Jesse has good taste in motorcycles. :)
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Post by doc66 » Tue Jun 12, 2007 6:32 pm

The supply depot was the building furthest from the gate with big double doors that looked as if they would swallow a semi trailer. One of the doors was open and they followed their guide into the building, once they were in, the door was rolled shut, effectively blocking out the meager light that filtered through the falling snow. Thankfully, they had found space heaters and had kicked the big jet heaters on, chasing the cold air away almost as soon as the door was rolled down. Emma saw her people had pulled two green-colored box trucks into the bay and were preparing them for loading. The trucks reminded her of big Uhaul trucks. A couple of her crew were currently attaching big chains to the rear tires in an effort to make them more snow serviceable. The two in the car came back to the Hummer as Emma stepped out.

“Boss, who’s hurt?”

Pointing her thumb behind her, she indicated the cargo area of the vehicle. “We’ll need a stretcher if there’s one around, gunshot,” she said. “Be careful of the dog.”

They gave her a curious look. She smiled, feeling the bite on her arm. “Trust me. How’s the salvage going?”

“So-so, we’ll wait for Nick to let you in on all that,” said one.

“Bad?”

He shrugged. “They’re trying to decide just how much Semtex to use. It should get interesting.”

Emma rolled her eyes. “I thought that Nick knew what he was doing with that stuff.”

“It’s the kid,” said the speaker. “He’s got all this military experience and thinks that Nick’s not using enough.”

“Jesus Christ, we want to use what’s inside, not turn it to dust,” she snapped. “Do we have a gurney?”

“On the way. If you want to follow us, we’ll take you to the vault.”

“Vault?”

“That’s what we’re calling it.”

Emma glanced over her shoulder, torn about if she should stay with Owen or go with her crew. She saw that Jesse and Hank were already at the injured man’s side. Mike and Jay had helped them unload Owen and the dog was pacing around the men, watching in concern as they carried him over to a nearby work bench and set him down. The dog sat next to the bench, it’s hackles up as it made low rumbles in its chest that were interspaced with whines of concern. Jay and Mike retreated with Cole in tow. She saw the nurses arrive dragging a wobbly bed on wheels between them.

The dog jumped up at the sight of the bed and began to pace again. Emma held up a hand for her people to wait and hurried over to the bench. The nurse’s had tried to approach Owen several times, but the dog had driven them back with a snarl. One of them began to pull a pistol out. Emma’s shout stopped her.

“Just give the dog a second,” she called.

“To do what, bite me?” asked the nurse.

Emma called to the dog, who glanced at her, still confused and concerned. While she had the animal distracted, the nurses moved in and began to check Owen over. They spoke in their arcane language as they worked, Emma keeping between them and the dog for the moment. She hoped that the animal did not suddenly find the courage to attack her again, she did not think she could take another bite from the animal. He did not attack, instead he eased over to where Owen was being cared for and sat nearby, watching the nurses as they worked. Emma saw them start an IV and several seconds later, add something from a vial into the solution.

“What’s up?” asked Emma.

“He’s dehydrated and lost a bit of blood, Boss.” She was told. “We can replace fluids, but they blood is a different matter. We don’t have the PolyHeme I’d like to have, but maybe we’ll get lucky here. We’ve given him just a straight D5W and an antibiotic for starters. We should probably go with a 2/3D, but I want to get him checked out first.” Emma felt the terms begin to numb her brain, the acronyms and number’s more like a science test to her than a medicine. The nurse saw this and stopped before Emma became totally lost. “How long ago did this happen, Boss?”

Emma glanced over at Cole, feeling the anger of his having left the man behind when he could have so easily been rescued if they had just waited a few seconds longer. Pushing those thoughts away, she gave her best guess. “12-18 hours ago.”

The nurse shook her head. “Who put this tampon in him?”

“I guess he did to keep the wound from bleeding all over. It was there when we got to him.”

The nurse frowned. “Well, it kept the shit out of it, let’s hope that it didn’t cause more problems for us. The bullet appears to still be in the wound, which can be a bad thing if it broke up inside him. If it’s intact, we’ll be in better shape. Have you given him any thing?”

“He’s been passed out mostly.”

Dismissing Emma with a curt “thanks, Boss”, the nurse went to work again, pulling items from a big medical box. The dog made a groaning snarl but stayed out of the way. It was either getting used to people helping Owen, or had decided that it was out numbered. Walking back to the others in her crew, Emma nodded for them to proceed. Cole eased up beside her.

“How is he?”

“Alive,” said Emma. She saw the hurt look cross his face at her answer. She knew he must have been beating himself up enough without her help. “I don’t know much more, if you think you can translate what she told me, then go for it.”

He nodded and fell back to brood.

The two led them through a wide hallway that was littered with the bodies of the dead and more recently dead undead. The smell was strong in the enclosed space, causing Emma to wrinkle her nose at the stench. She jumped and raised her AR as one of the doors suddenly erupted with the sound of hammering from the other side of the barrier. One of the guides saw her and smiled. “By the way, Boss, don’t open any doors, we basically just cleared out the hall and slammed the doors shut on anything that was moving as we went through. There’s got to be a hundred of those things still trying to bang their way to us. We blocked off the fire doors too, Nick stationed a rifleman at each one to be sure they stayed put. I’m glad they’re not smart enough to use the door knobs, or we’d be fucked.”

“Is there a way that they can accidentally open one of the doors?”

The man gave her another shrug. “I guess anything’s possible, Boss, but all of them are twist knobs, so we’re hoping they don’t get lucky. The riflemen in the hall’s should give us enough warning if we need it, Boss.”

She hoped so. They rounded a corner and came to where Nick and Kyle were still discussing the placement of the Semtex. They had applied a ropy coil to the door already, but were now in discussion on whether it had been placed correctly for the maximum effect. The rest of the crew was lounging around, leaning against the walls or sitting on the floor while to two argued in low tones and pointed at various parts of the door. They saw Emma and quickly stood with a rustle of plaid kilts and the clank of weaponry, nodding and giving her their fake Scottish accented greetings as she passed them by. Nick saw Emma and waved a hand at her.

“Emma, tell this kid that I’ve done this before.”

Striding up to the two of them, Emma looked at Kyle and then Nick, then back to Kyle. “He’s done this before.”

“Okay, but this isn’t any door,” said Kyle.

“Boss,” put in Emma.

“Excuse me?”

“Boss,” she said. “My title around here is Boss. If you want to join us, you call me Boss.”

“Yes, ma’m,” said Kyle suddenly military in bearing. “Boss.”

“Okay,” smiled Emma. She studied the barrier for a moment and then glanced back at Kyle. “It looks like a bank vault door.”

Kyle glanced at the door. “I guess it is, Boss.”

“We’ve blown bank doors before, Kyle,” said Emma with a hand on his shoulder. “Let’s get this done. I’ve got an injured man out there and I want to get what we came for as expediently as possible; the snow’s picked up and the sun’s going down.” She looked over at Nick. “Ready?”

“Been ready,” groused Nick, turning to wave everyone back around the corner. They all picked up their gear and trotted the several hundred feet back that he required. Following everyone, Nick gave the door a final glance before turning the corner himself. In his hand he carried a radio controlled trigger. It was set on a frequency that they did not use and so theoretically safe. He still had not set the fuse until they were all ready to leave. He now turned on the trigger and made sure for the hundredth time that there was no one in blast range.

“What about popping the doors in the hall, will the explosion do that?” asked Emma.

“Might happen,” admitted Nick.

“So, we could be letting the Zombies out?”

“Could be,” he agreed with his finger on the trigger, waiting to remove the trigger lock.

Turning to her crew, Emma informed them of the possibility and had them watch the accesses into the offices that lined the hall. After she alerted the crew to the danger she turned back to Nick. “You could have warned us--.”

“The kid’s got me a little off my game,” snarled Nick.

“So he knows his shit?”

Nick gazed at her with a sour expression before answering. “Yeah, he knows his shit.”

Hiding her amusement, Emma patted her friend on the shoulder. “Don’t worry, he won’t replace you.”

“I’m not worried about being replaced,” whispered Nick, turning back to the task at hand. “By the way, how’s Owen?”

“Shot,” she said. “But alive.”

“Good,” he replied. “If you’re going to replace me with someone, I’d like it to be him.”

“Me too,” she agreed.

“Here we go,” informed Nick so everyone could hear.

Emma said nothing else and listened to him count down to the explosion. Everyone in the hall covered their ears and opened their mouths on two. Emma winced when the Semtex went off. The concussion sent a hollow BOOM through the building, shaking dust from the ceiling tiles as it echoed out from the blast. The air in the building seemed to expand and contract as the shock wave pressurized the atmosphere around them, pressing on their ear drums and rattling their teeth as they all tried swallowing several times to equalize the effects of the explosion. The dust rolled down the hall away from the explosion, and in the swirling air Emma thought she heard the groan of the undead.

Grabbing up her rifle, Emma tapped Nick and Kyle, who were in front of her and behind her, to alert them to the threat. Kyle was already standing with his suppressed HK in hand, working his jaw to clear the after effects from his body. The others in the hall started to move as well, various doors a having opened along the hall, while others had stayed shut. Suddenly, the air was filled with the muffled sound of their rifles at work.

The flood of undead that followed was more than the hundred that had been predicted to Emma. The camouflaged garbed ghouls staggered through the doorway, ignoring their fallen comrades who staggered clear of the door frames to die in the hall. The two rifleman who had been stationed at the fire doors joined the group after a run that involved randomly shooting behind them at the swarm that had broken through the burst doors. Emma took aim at one, shooting as her front sight felon the things head, barely seeing the effect of her round entering the things head. The next shot was wild, the bullet cracking the block wall behind her target, she fired again, another shot hitting and yet another target appeared. Emma shot at it as the Highlanders shouted out their battle cry. Several of them unlimbered their Sgian Dubh’s as the things closed in on the outer ranks. Emma cursed them and pulled at Nick, dragging him back to the firing line that was forming under the direction of the Kid.

The crew, those that weren’t swinging their stupid hammers, were clustered in the hallway, shoulder to shoulder and back to back, a living barrier across the space as the undead swarmed toward them. The Highlanders were starting to sing some annoying song with loud voices, hammering about with the Sgian Dubh’s, spattering blood through the air and across the walls. There were four of them standing shoulder to shoulder and swinging with efficient sweeps of the four pound hammers. They were slowly being driven back by the sheer numbers. Kyle was shouting for everyone to pick their shots, and telling people to call out reloads as they fired, his voice carrying over the sound of the rifles in the hall. Emma let him take control of the battle, happy to simply add her bullets to those going down range. She heard a shout that became a scream when one of the Highlanders was taken by the undead.

He was on the end of the fighting line, and the numbers of hissing, groaning, Zombies were able to get inside his the swing of his Sgian Dubh. One of the ghouls was able to grab at his arm, pulling it toward his mouth and latching on to the forearm with a broken toothed snarl. The Highlander brought his hammer down on the things head, crushing through the skull, but the weight of the falling body pulled him out of the line. Another Zombie attacked, biting him on the shoulder as yet another was able to reach his head and pull him into its deadly embrace. Emma saw this happening and took aim at the man’s broad back, unable to get a shot at his head since it was now being ravaged by the monsters that swarmed over him. She fired several shots into his body, hoping that they would kill him before the things could do the job. Emma felt the briefest moment of sorrow as the man’s body disappeared under the ripping attack of the undead, and then put those feelings aside until they could be reexamined later. She was already on another target before the thoughts were fully formed and dismissed.

The remaining three Highlanders saw that they were being overwhelmed and the bloody demise of their companion. As one, they began to quick step away form the undead, giving ground to the ghouls, some of the beasts actually falling forward as those behind pressed into the vacuum created by their retreat.

Emma called out a reload and dropped the magazine, shoving another in its place even before the words were fully out of her mouth. The undead, while relentless in their attack, were loosing numbers to the withering fire from the rifles. This did not halt the advance of the beasts. The dead were starting to fall just feet from the firing line, one fell on Nicks leg, it’s jaws still snapping and actually caught on his pant leg, closing on the fabric and pulling at him. He kicked the thing, dislodging it from his leg only to have another close the gap and grab the barrel of his rifle. Nick fired into the things head, then let the rifle go as he pulled free his pistol. Rifle and ghoul fell at his feet and he began to fire at nearly point blank range into the undead horde. Emma managed to keep her rifle just a few moments longer, but was forced to drop it when it went dry again, leaving her no time for a reload. She swept the .45 from the holster and fired into the face of a Zombie wearing a flight uniform, its knees buckled and it fell in front of her, staying kneeling as if in prayer.

The beast behind it pushed it over, causing the body to hit Emma in the hips, knocking her off balance, She staggered, shooting as she went back, managing to catch herself on the Highlander behind her, who was able to stop her fall long enough for her to catch her balance. She heard another scream, but was unable to identify the source. Her .45 banged out more rounds, the bullets striking targets within arms reach. The slide locked back and she was suddenly without a weapon. Emma shoved the barrel into the mouth of one of the things, breaking the front teeth as the metal was rammed into the gaping jaw to keep it from latching onto her. She managed to push the thing back, and grabbed up a magazine from her belt while dropping the empty from the pistol while it was still in the monsters mouth.

Another ghoul came at her from the side. Emma gave it an armored elbow to the face, stopping it from biting her, but the thing stepped close enough to put a hand on her jacket. Fighting her fear, Emma shoved the magazine into the well; still keeping the barrel in the undead things mouth and thumbed the slide release down. The slide shot forward, hammering the beast in the upper jaw and jerking its head up as the round slammed into the chamber. Emma fired the round as soon as it was home, the report exploding the Zombies head and clearing it off her pistol. She felt the hand of the other grasp her jacket and pull her into its putrid embrace. Emma screamed out a curse while pressing the .45 against the monsters forehead even as it descended toward her.

It fell on her, knocking her to the ground.

Emma fought the weight of the beast as it carried her to the slime covered floor. She managed to pushed it partially off her as they hit the hard ground, her breath knocked out of her lungs. Not having the luxury of time to catch her breath, Emma tried to scoot out from under the body that pinned her. A howl erupted above her. Looking up, Emma saw that another was reaching for her, ready to fall on her to complete its deathly urge to kill her. Firing from the ground, Emma shot until she reached its head, feeling the blood and brain matter mist the air above her. She pulled another mag free and inserted it not bothering to save the one or two rounds left in the other that fell to the floor.

Then it was over.

She pointed the weapon at things, but they were living, breathing people, covered in gore, and struggling to come to grips with the realization that they had survived. One of them, Mike, she realized, helped her get the body off her legs and pulled her to her feet.

“You okay, Boss?” he asked her, his words coming as if from a log way away.

“Yes,” confirmed Emma, astonished that she was indeed, okay. “What about the others?”

“Don’t know yet,” he told her.

She looked around at the gathered and saw instinctively that there were gaps in the roll, and her heart fell. She saw Nick and gave him a sad smile, which he returned.

She hoped that the salvage was worth it.

“Form up,” called the Kid’s voice. “Let’s see who needs help.” He saw Emma. “That okay, Boss?”

She nodded. “Take care of it, Kid.”

He smiled bashfully and started getting the people together. Emma sent a couple of the people back to the garage area to check on the people there while the Kid had one of the Highlanders help him with the head count. Emma retrieved her spent magazines and her carbine from the floor, waiting on the results of the count, dreading the outcome.
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Makarov
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Post by Makarov » Wed Jun 13, 2007 9:45 am

Good! Hope the stuff in the vault was worth the fight :wink:
Thomas

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Gregoriev
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Post by Gregoriev » Wed Jun 13, 2007 9:52 am

Why is Kyle taking shit from some civilian? He's doing THEM a favor, not the other way around.
Please read my zombie story at:
http://www.fanfiction.net/s/2865003/1/

CHAPTER 8 HAS JUST BEEN RELEASED!!!!

Please send me comment/suggestions/reviews through PM.

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AwPhuch
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Post by AwPhuch » Wed Jun 13, 2007 1:24 pm

Gregoriev wrote:Why is Kyle taking shit from some civilian? He's doing THEM a favor, not the other way around.
Its the soldier spirit..he is a part of a "team" again

Kick ass man...they are kickin ass and taking names!

Rock on Doc!
Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms - Should be a convenience store, not a Governmental entity
"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." (Edmund Burke)

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