Green Eyed Monster

Zombie or Post Apocalyptic themed fiction/stories.

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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:59 am

30.

Tomaz Valic sipped lemon tea from a lovely old tea cup. It had a sparse, dark blue flower pattern, over bone white as well as blue rimming and handle. The cup reminded him of a set his Czech grandmother had, when he was a child. That was another time though, even another life.

A wide screen laptop in front of him was playing a 10X speed video of the house across the street. The feed came from a standard Panasonic SD5 camera, hidden inside a decoration, hung in the living room window. The program would occasionally stop the high-speed play back when there was a change, people coming or going, cars driving by, etc. It would play at 2X for the duration of the movement and then return to 10X. Still nothing all that interesting going on, though any & all goings on were reported in detail.

The audio was recorded separately and time signatures allowed sync-up if that was ever necessary. A Theremin Model IV handled sound collection, being mounted on a tripod in the attic. It’s infra-red laser aimed through a small air vent near the roof’s peek, bouncing off the upstairs hall window of the target house. Listening back to the recorded audio went faster, as it’s program completely dumped all non vocal sound into a recoverable trash file. It even recognized TV and other electronic voice reproduction as unimportant, dumping it as well.

“Do we got food commin’ today?”

Valic’s associate, Randal Flowers, strode in from the back bedroom, just in time to start his watch.

“Yeah, supposed to be, anyway… Even got some meat.”

“Great, is it some of that weird shit you like? Dried sausage and what not?”

“Yeah, and some head cheese.”

Flowers grimaced and winced, mimicking an involuntarily gag reflex. Tomaz grinned, slyly.

“Ha ha, they didn’t have any, or I would have… You don’t know what you’re missing.”

“I’m not missing head cheese, I know that. Anything new over there?”

Flowers motioned toward the target house and popped a donut hole in his mouth.

“Same thing as yesterday, and the day before, more or less.”

Valic, being Croatian, struggled with some English phrasing, like rolling R’s of the the rhyming ‘or’ right after the ‘more’ but he loved to use them. He prided himself on being mostly self taught to a high level of conversational English.

“That new guy though, bald guy’s buddy…”

“You mean, Doctor Evil’s buddy?”

“You calling him Dr. Evil, because he is bald, that’s funny… But he’s like two Dr. Evils. Anyway, yes, his buddy, I think he’s a neighbor from a block over, probably near ‘Doctor Evil’s house, but we should check to be sure. Big Asian dude, here… a close up.”

Tomaz zoomed in to a pixilated still frame of the stranger. Cropped black hair framed a serious face that looked to have been in a fight or two. He then zoomed back out, scrolling over to the man’s truck, a black compact pickup with an oversized Pittsburg Steelers sticker on the tailgate.

“I’ll take a midnight run and find where that truck is parked. He’s gotta be another neighbor, he showed up right after Doctor Evil, right?... but best to be sure.”

“Sounds good, you need a little exercise anyway, all you do is smoke and eat junk food.”

“Shut up, better than floor scrap sausage or whatever that stuff is.” Flowers laughed and slapped Tomaz on the back.

It was the pair’s second assignment together, they worked well as a team, even with the extreme diversity of backgrounds. Tomaz, a decorated Croat commander, while Flowers was a dishonorably discharged US Army gunnery sergeant.

“When you’re out there, grab the mail as well, before it fills up the box and makes someone suspicions.”

“Suspicious… not suspicions, you can HAVE suspicions, but you ARE suspicious.”

“Yes, I know, I say things wrong to mess wit you sometimes. Anyway, I hope he doesn’t keep the truck in a garage… Too bad we don’t have a DMV connection to just run the tag. You would think we would, you know?”

“Yup, we’re supposed to have ‘agents everywhere’ but we can’t even get a tag ran, pretty weak.”

“Enough whining, I’m going to sleep for a while. What time will you go out?”

“Maybe eleven, don’t want to be out too late, might look suspicions.” Flowers grinned.

“Wake me then… take a radio, too.”

“I know, and a gun.”

Their first job, down in Florida didn’t require weapons, at least as a specific part of the assignment. They were always armed of course, but generally just concealed pistols unless the mission had a high probability of engaging an enemy of some sort. The present job had such a probability, so they had a full complement of weapons including Walmart purchased M4 assault rifles and illegally imported grenades.

Tomaz went to bed while flowers took his shift at the monitor. With the playback, it was not necessary to pay strict attention to their subject, it was as important to keep track of local and regional news, though there was only one local channel left broadcasting. It was for this reason Flowers was watching CNN around 9:45 PM when the news concerning Washington DC hit the wire.


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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sat Oct 20, 2012 12:44 am

31.

A chief warrant officer Drucker couldn’t remember the name of, walked up to his table and saluted. She stood at attention, staring at an unseen horizon, waiting for the return. Finally she lowered her eyes enough to see the look on Drucker’s face. Eyebrows up, head cocked, a look that asked if she had forgotten that salutes between officers were done away with, after the world fell apart.

She proceeded as if the salute had been returned.

“Sir, please pardon the interruption, but I have a message from General Redbrave.”

The general put down the slightly stale bagel he was chewing through, and sighed.

“Is this a super secret message that is just too secret to be communicated though encrypted radio waves, to my secure mobile phone?”

“Sir, I’m not sure, but the first part of the message may shed some light on that.”

“Ok, my curiosity is piqued.”

“Sir, he said you left your phone on your desk.”

The general patted his empty pocket and smiled ruefully.

“Yes, continue.”

“I… wish someone else could tell you, sir… But it’s DC, they can’t hold it.”

Back in his office, Drucker received a full sitrep. DC had been nearly overrun the day before, but a combined force of Marine, Army, Air Force security from Andrews, National Guard and local security, pushed the greenies out at least to the rivers in the south, east and west. To the north, with help from DC police and SWAT, they cleared out to as far as far as Mt. Rainier. It had seemed as if surrounding areas could be cleared as well, and they might finally get a check in the W column.

But Rock Creek, to the west was just too shallow in places, to hold the horde that had gathered in Georgetown. Before midnight, one mass of greenies pushed in as far as New Hampshire Ave., stretching from Dupont Circle down to Foggy Bottom. Another smaller group squirted between a Guard unit & the Potomac, roaming all the way south, to the Lincoln Memorial and assaulting troops there.

This probably could have been handled, except for the major fuckup by an overzealous Marine platoon, who took it upon themselves to set a “trap” for the greenies. A few hundred gallons of gasoline dumped out in the State Department’s west parking lot, ahead of an incoming rabble of greenies, then ignited by incendiary grenades, once they were in the puddle. The word had obviously not filtered down to these grunts, that setting greenies on fire produced mobile fire-starting humanoid torches.

A dozen humvees were set ablaze, as was the State Department and Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors buildings. The nearby United States Institute of Peace, which was unfortunately still manned, it’s occupants having ignored instructions to evacuate in a brave attempt to make peace with the advancing greenies, was utterly destroyed.

Nobody has any idea why one of the walking Bic lighters ended up at the Washington Monument. The monument being out in the middle of a field, minding it’s own business. Like all other structures, it’s lights were off and of course being solid stone, it wouldn’t burn. But the wood planked scaffolding climbing over 400’ up it’s north face, lit the night sky like a burning-man effigy.


Drucker looked up from his screen, as Joel Redbrave entered his office, the general began to rant.

“We have to get the president… or the joint chiefs, or a court, or someone to reduce our engagement requirements, this is bullshit! Those men had to just watch as an army of cannibals marched towards them… not allowed to shoot until actually attacked. And even then, they’re not supposed to hit greenies who are not SPECIFICALLY attacking… As though they might be there coincidentally.”

“Except for those Marines, sir, they didn’t wait.”

“Yeah, and the ones who didn’t get burned alive, eaten, or turned green, may be looking at court marshal… How did they miss the ‘fire bad’ memo?”

“Still looking into that, sir… But we have reissued that directive, with added emphases.”

“I just don’t get it… Everywhere else, we can engage at the first sign of offensive posture, after a quick warning is ignored. But in DC, we gotta play patty cake with them? What the fuck?”

“I think it’s the media, sir, the president knows they are there in force and not just ours. She doesn’t want them showing wholesale slaughter on the few stations that are left running.”

“Oh I know that, but the stupid part is, now they can show OUR guys getting slaughtered.”

Drucker and his people spent the rest of Tuesday trying to push in every direction for new ROE, as well as top cover for the DC troops, which mostly seemed to garner apprehension or derision. Attempts to bring in any and neighboring, unoccupied troops to reinforce the dwindling numbers of DC defenders was also met with cool detachment.

Another problem was absence without leave, it was not quite epidemic, but the previous weekend seemed to be used as an excuse or break point of sorts. “Sarge, my kid’s daycare is closed, the wife’s gotta work, I think I need a few days at home to sort stuff out.” Or “Captain, I can’t reach my family & our town has just been added to the quarantine zone list, I gotta go check on them.” Of course these kinds of requests were denied, but that Monday morning, lots of guys were gone, no schedule for a return, no forwarding address, just gone.

By late afternoon it looked to be almost a foregone conclusion that all of DC was lost. The fires had spread, as greenies, drawn by the commotion and smoke, audible & visible for miles, ran right into the flames. Like heat-resistant moths, they would catch fire and then dash off screaming into other structures, to spark the next blaze.

“Can you get me Lopez on the horn, Kathy?”

Leland Drucker asked his assistant. He had previously resisted directly contacting the Marine major general, working through channels instead. But as night fell, hopes for holding on to any part of DC fell with it, and he had to give it a shot. Antonio Lopez, commanded the combined forces in and around DC., he had only met the man in passing, but knew of him. Finally a line blinked on Drucker’s phone.

“Leland!... I hear you are bending ears to get us some kill orders over here. You calling to let me know we can open up a bit?”

“I wish I was, general. I’m just calling to ask what your plans are in the next few hours. I’ve been watching the live feeds… drone vids… position updates and all that.”

“My plans are to reclaim some ground in the next few hours, and get some of these fires out. Do you have some other options I should know about?”

“Well, my thoughts are these, if you get surrounded, which you pretty much already are, Andrews HAS to send some birds to at least clear a path out for you… Now, if they clear more than a path… say, a swath, what is the harm? Your thoughts?”

“You know what orders I’m under, general… Absolutely no collateral damage. Hell, I have gunships if I want them… Well, I want them, but I mean, if I could use them…”

A heavy machinegun rattled in the background, interrupting Lopez.

“…I have a SMALL list of things I can scuff up and a very long list… basically every building or monument you’ve ever heard of, that must not get holes put in them. I think the logic is, if the greenies take DC, all they will do is poop on everything, we come back in later, take it back & wash it off… that is once we get a better handle on… how to do that.”

“You know how to do it, like I know how to do it.”

“If we get too hemmed in, the gloves come off… no planes, but no gloves, we engage all mobile targets at that point.”

“Now Tony, that’s not what I meant… That could be suicide. In my estimation, you ought to begin a breakout within the next hour, or you will be stuck. If the powers are ok with abandoning the capitol, no need to lose a battalion in some kind of ‘last stand’ heroics… Fall back to Andrews and at least keep that place tight.”

“Don’t worry Leland, I won’t do anything stupid.”

But he did, he did do something stupid. An hour after hanging up with Drucker, Major General Antonio Lopez died in action on the south lawn of the White House. He had indeed ran a gambit to become intentionally surrounded, as to loosen engagement restrictions. Unfortunately he couldn’t get enough of his scattered forces on the same page. His armored control trailer came under attack around 9:00 pm eastern, and after a short distress message, fell silent at 9:06.

Over the next few hours, a few survivors at a time trickled into nearby Andrews AFB, to be quarantined. In total, of the nearly two thousand men and women operating inside the DC borders, two hundred thirty were recovered.

News agencies didn’t officially confirm it until after the full retreat, but the internet had been calling DC a lost cause for hours. Pictures of burning buildings, dead soldiers, pitched battles and greenies on the Capitol Steps, filled the net. And it didn’t matter that the president was safe in a bunker somewhere, or that eighty percent of congress was still alive and kicking, still governing but in absentia… The reports were simply variations on the theme- The US has fallen, greenies take over Washington DC, we have lost.



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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Oct 21, 2012 10:20 pm

32.

“Gentlemen...”

Russell Weisz addressed his assembled crew of motlies.

“…and lady.”

He motioned to Tyrel, a skinny con who, with the properly applied makeup, a cobbled together dress and lovely headscarf, appeared to be a fairly attractive woman.

“I have called you all together here today, because I can… and to share some news.”

The gathered crowd erupted in hoots, hollers and howls. The men’s love for the charismatic Weisz, was potent and obvious. Mathew Klein stood nearby on the railed second floor walkway, clapping along with the rest.

“A few days ago almost all of you were prisoners, most of ya were eventually gonna die in here, or either in Dixon. Now, thanks to events beyond our controls and the brave sacrifice of many of our brothers, we are free men… Sure, we’re stuck here for the time bein, but we aint locked in cells at night, nor beat on or hassled by the bulls…”

Cheers broke out again, fists pumped in the air, whistles rang in green ears.

“So it is with great hope & opto-mism, that I announce the dissolution of the US government.”

Crickets chirped. Prisoners looked at each other in nearly dead silence, eyes bugged out, mouths dropped open. Then the whispering started.

“I know, it’s hard to believe, but I just saw it with my own eyes. And I will get that TV in the cafeteria going again… well, not that one it’s toast, but a new one, so you all can see it too. The deal is, Washington DC has fallen to the greenies.”

A smart guy in the crowd spoke up.

“But that bicth president… and them law makers, they been hidin out in some caves, all safe and sound!”

“Yes, that may be true, or it may not be, hard to say… But what is obvious is, the Army, Navy, Coast Guard, whoever… Don’t have either the strength or balls, to stop greenies from taking over the fucking capitol of the fucking country. Let that sink in, boys and girls, either they couldn’t beat a bunch of brainless greenies, or they are too ate up with rules and proto-calls to get it done.”

Weisz scanned their eyes for comprehension, he found a few that looked like a low wattage light bulb had clicked on, but most just looked confused.

“Think about it like this… If you was gettin jumped by some gang, and your crew saw it, but they were too pussy to help… how tough are they? Or if they did try to help, but got the shit beat out of em’… how tough are they?”

Heads slowly nodded, eyebrows raised, understanding dawned, he was on the right track.

“That’s the US government right now, they are a weak-ass crew, who can’t protect their own, anymore. They may be there, hiding out somewhere, trying to give orders… But they’re orders just don’t matter much.”

“Is them cops and soldiers outside, gone now?”

The question was not asked in a challenging way, instead it sounded almost hopeful.

“I don’t think so, not yet… But maybe soon. I think it’s like this, it’s about proximity. My poppa always said, you care the most about what’s close. So first the national government fails, they trying to protect a half billion people they aint never met. Then the staters, they care about the state, sure but still… they aint dyin for their state. Finally the locals, they care most, it’s their families, neighbors and friends on the line. BUT when the orders from above get sketchy and backup isn’t forthcomin, they won’t hang around forever babysittin us.

“Hell yeah boss!”

Others joined in, a chorus of agreement echoed through the octagonal room.

“They have their orders out there… but we don’t need no orders, we just tryin to survive! They don’t wanna be out there, any more than we wanna be in here. Shit, those guys have families at home, ya know? This is not their lives… But it IS our lives!”

Weisz reveled in the cheering, it only tapered off after two full minutes. Then a chant of ‘Wise! Wise! Wise!’ started, continuing for another minute, till he put a finger to his lips, quieting the crowd.

“Thank you, thanks… Now listen, most of you got jobs assigned, getting that bus fixed up, keepin track of the pigs outside, and etcetera. I got a couple of ideas I’m workin on… who knows how to do that youtube?


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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Oct 28, 2012 8:51 pm

33.

“Hey, dad!... oh, wait, don’t get up!”

“Ok!”

Samantha Wilkins padded down the stairs, carrying her laptop.

“It’s Washington, the Army can’t hold on to it…”

She opened the ultrabook and slid it across the table her dad was sitting at. He looked over from his inventorying, with a skeptical brow.

“They won’t let DC get overrun, they just won’t. It’s probably just hype… someone trying to be famous.”

“It’s not just one person, Dad.”

“Ok, people trying to be famous.”

He looked at the page she had up, a blog called 121stMC. It had a military styled background & a group picture of uniformed troops at the top. On the left, some pictures of smoking buildings that looked like ones in the capital. Scrolling down there were photos from a happier time, one three three soldiers goofing around with a CPR manikin, another of five smiling soldiers toting a sixth off of a Blackhawk, on a litter. A red cross over a white square on the chopper’s door had ‘121’ in the center.

“It does kind of look legitimate.”

“Click on that one… it’s bad.”

Alden gave his daughter a sharp look, before hitting the youtube link. He wished she would not go looking for such things, she was only thirteen. But then again, if things kept going south, growing up quick would be a necessity. He clicked on it and the screen switched to youtube before showing the recording.

The video began with a moving aerial view, out the side of a helicopter. The bird was making a slow turn to the left, while the camera aimed down from the open side door. Audio was popping wind and thudding rotor sound, mixed with high pitched engine whine, collected by an overloaded little microphone.

Below the circling chopper, a half dozen military vehicles were parked in a loosely configured line that spanned part of a grass field. Five of the soldiers had rifles laid on the hoods of their respective vehicles, taking slow, aimed shots at unseen foes, bodies littered the area forward of their position. Twenty feet behind the vehicles, two soldiers tended to a bloody third, who was prone in the grass.

The camera bobbled as it swung right, attempting to follow the action on the ground through the windscreen. A crewman in the right forward seat looked back toward the camera man and said something indiscernible, pointing off towards a smoking, burned out building just coming into view.

The camera focused in on a dozen slowly moving figures, ambling toward the improvised bulwark. Some were blackened, charred or possibly soot covered, some of those appeared to be naked or nearly so, others were randomly attired.

The camera view shifted back to the left, centered generally on the downed soldier, as the chopper slowly turned & descended. The air filled with debris and dust. At once, the camera swung left, a female greenie came out of nowhere. A muscular green woman in spandex Capri’s and tank top, she looked a little like a thin she-hulk. The soldier closest to her fired once, then dropped out an empty magazine. He fumbled for a fresh one but was not quick enough. The short haired greenie jogger grabbed his rifle, using it for leverage to pull them together. He tried to push her away but she bit at the hand, removing two fingers.

As the chopper set down, a soldier aboard stepped up to the left side of the open door & shouldered his weapon. Then the camera was quickly laid on it’s side, on the floor of the plane. Only a thin line of what was going on outside could be seen, the rest of the picture was a sideways helicopter deck. Shots could be heard above the whining engine noise, boots could be seen running, the jumping from the doorway, shadows of figures blocked portions of the bright strip of light that extended top to bottom on the right side of the screen.

Then the strip of light, which had been light green, started shifting colors and the camera slid forward. The last bit of viewable footage was a tree line sinking and blue sky filling the partially viewable door frame, then the camera shifted again, the view turning completely dark green.

“There’s another video where a guy explains what happened… tmalss, they tried…”

“What’s t-malls?”

“To make a long story short… which defeats the purpose if I have to explain it, Dad. Anyway, they’re medics, so they tried to help a wounded man, but the guys shooting from the cars, got attacked by greenies. So one of the helicopter guys got out to try and help, but he got jumped on by three more, then a bunch more greenies attacked… Then the rest of the guys in the helicopter took off, without their buddy… He said he forgot about the camera till later, it just recorded the side a box or something, till it ran out of card space.”

Alden stared, unspeaking, at the youtube page. The video was gone, a box of thumbnails replaced it, each with titles like- DC burns, Washington falls, Troops killed by greenies, etc.

“Did you see?... Bullets didn’t stop them.” Samantha said ominously.

“Bullets stopped a lot of them, you could see… in the field, a lot were dead.”

“Yeah, but the guy shot that jogger woman right in the head, she hardly flinched.”

“Well, it was more the face… Jesus Sam, I don’t want you watching this kind of stuff, ok? There’s bad stuff going on, you get it, I get it, we don’t have to watch it like rubberneckers at a car crash, you know?”

“I just… wanna know what’s going on, like what could happen to us… to mom.”

Alden grabbed her, squeezing her in a bear hug.

“Nothing is going to happen to us, or mom… We’re going to be fine.”

But the reality of armed soldiers, being beaten by unarmed greenies, began to sink in. And further, that they couldn’t even protect DC. How did a small town like Decatur rate, on the list of important places to protect? It was sinking in that he, himself, would probably have to do something, at some point. Something dangerous and scary, something regular people shouldn’t have to do.

A couple of hours later, Gretchen Carlson reported, through streaming tears, that DC belonged to the greenies.



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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Thu Nov 22, 2012 3:23 pm

34.


“Forward, let’s see what’s cooking.” Maresa said, thinking unknown smoke was better than the known, being two big greenies & probably more. Jordan Parks did not agree.

“Go to the burning town? What the fuck, Mare?... We can just drive around those two…” He pointed back toward the greenies trudging after them. “…and find a different way through. There must be lots of ways… ways that are not on fire!”

Tom cut in. “So it’s up to me, then? So you guys didn’t really need to vote since you split, right… I could have just decided then?”

“Yes.”

“Yup.”

“We go forward, if it’s shit, we can always turn around there… By then maybe our new friends will have cleared off the road, found something else to chase.”

“Or, they will have company, and we will be stuck between a town full of greenies and a road full of greenies.”

Tom eyed Jordan in the mirror. “Yeah, it could go that way, or it could be that the town is burning the dead greenies, in a big pile, cause they killed them all and they welcome us & are actually cool.”

They left the two ambling greenies in a cloud of dust and headed toward Marshal. Only eight miles to the edge of town, the trio was there in ten minutes. Tom slowed the van to idle, to let them survey the area. Hardees on the left, had a big sign in front- LOCALS ONLY! As did a gas station, a half mile further. Some houses were boarded up, some had storm shutters and others looked abandoned.

In general, the town looked in good shape as they drove deeper into it. The smoke seemed to come from past the far end of town, not from any of the buildings in the town proper. Unfortunately, that put the fire near their destination, I-70 and SR-40 that ran just north of town.

St. Mary’s church, near the middle of town, was the first place they saw activity. The parking lot was half full of cars & people leaving the church. Many of them stopped, pointing and staring at the passing van. It was unsettling to say the least.

“Do we look that out of place?” Maresa asked, somewhat rhetorically.

“A beat up van, with no passenger door, hood hanging off, that nobody recognizes, in a small town… naaaah.”

It was only a mile further before the houses & businesses began to thin out, and the source of the smoke came into view. It was a wall of burning… stuff, twenty feet high, crossing the road in a receding crescent shape.

“Is that… tires? And maybe just piles of garbage?”

“Yeah, and it’s totally blocking the road, time for a U-turn.” Tom said, looking for an opening in the median.

“Why in the hell would people pile trash on their road and light it on fire?” Maresa asked, not really expecting a good answer.

A little further, and the fields on either side of the road block came into view. The crop had been plowed under in the immediate area around the fire, presumably to prevent the fire from spreading. A few pieces of heavy equipment were parked in various places, one of which, a loader with a forked bucket, was running idle with an operator inside.

At each end of the blockade was a group of men armed with various long guns. Some dressed in ‘farm’ attire, a few looked more tactical. On the right, a group of three men were gathered loosely around a green off-road buggy of some kind, just past the end of the burning blockade. On the other side, similarly positioned, a highly lifted four-wheel-drive truck was surrounded by a half dozen men. A few turned to check out the van, but didn’t seem concerned.

“This seems… odd, anyone? Ideas on what the hell those guys are doing?”

Jordan replied. “Who cares! They look like they got it covered, whatever the hell it is. Let’s make like a thing that gets the hell out of places & get the hell out of here.”

“You got it.” Tom jumped the low median, turning sharp to avoid the curb on the far side as he completed the turn. Heading back through town, they noticed more people were out and about, though most seemed to be out staring at the strangers, not about much else. As they neared St. Mary’s, a stocky, plaid shirted man, with a black rifle slung to his chest, stepped out into their path. His left hand was up in the traditional ‘halt’ gesture, his right, was on the rifle’s grip.

“LET ME DO THE TALKING!” Top whispered, in the most emphatic way possible.

The man stepped around to the right side of the van, wordlessly appraising the vehicle and it’s occupants.

“So… where’s your door? And… what happened to your hood?”

“We had a little accident. Are you the sheriff?”

“No sir, used to be a deputy though. Steve Winter, where you headed, if you don’t mind me asking?”

“Tom McLaughlin, glad to meet you. We’re trying to get through to Decatur, Springfield, and that area. But we keep hitting roadblocks.”

“Yeah, more and more of those, unfortunately. Ours, back there, has worked pretty well, but we sure wish it weren’t necessary. Terre Haute is uh… You have any family there, in Terre Haute?”

“No sir.”

“They’re done for, overrun. 40 and 70 are jammed up with refugees headed west. It’s uh… it’s hell out on that road, greenies everywhere.”

“Holy shit… that close? Two miles from here?”

“Yup. They had a guard unit and some federal boys holding the border crossings there, but we haven’t heard from any of them in… eighteen hours.”

Shots rang out from the direction of the fire wall. The ex-deputy grimaced.

“We get a few stragglers an hour, nosing around… Last night was much worse, it peaked around midnight, had around thirty of them, that hour.”

“Thirty? You guys handled thirty greenies? With like ten guys?”

“Nah, we had more help last night. And we had… have watchers all around town, in case they got around the fire… But they seem to like it, maybe they think it’s a restaurant sign. Anyway, did you come from, south? I had heard the border checks were holding down there, where did you cross?”

Tom seemed to consider how much to say, for a moment. “Darwin ferry, nobody guarding that, except some greenies.”

“Greenies down there? This side, or the other?”

“Your side, and we saw a couple more just down the road, less than ten miles.”

“Well, that’s great, terrific. Just a minute.”

He pulled a small radio from a shirt pocket. “Hey, Ryan, you there? If you’re radio’s off, I’m going to knee-cap your!...”

Ex-deputy Winter, looked back at Tom.

“Huh, I guess he can’t hear my threats if his radio is off.”

A click accompanied by hiss sounded from his radio, then a voice. “What’s up, I’m trying to take a shit.”

The ex-deputy scrunched up his nose & mouthed the word ‘sorry’ to Tom.

“Well, finish that, then come up with a plan to block the southern roads. Some folks just gave me word there are greenies between here and Darwin.”

The radio clicked again, this time the hiss lasted almost a minute before Ryan spoke.

“Ahhhg!... Damn it! We’re going to end up bottled up in here, no escape routes… I don’t like it.”

“Nobody likes it, but the alternative is what? Leave the roads open? Where are we going anyway?”

Winter’s face was turning slightly red as his temper rose. He lowered the radio and took a deep breath. After a pause to calm himself, he turned away from the van to achieve a modicum of privacy before continuing.

“Everyone voted, we’re standing our ground… You agreed, now let’s cut the chit chat and you get your shit shat, huh?”

“…Yup, you’re right, and that was funny… I’m on it.”

He pocketed the radio & turned back, grinning apologetically. “Sorry about that, my brother, he… He’s an engineer. Anyway, you guys better head out, unless you want to get stuck hanging out here.”

“Any particular route you see as better than another, for us to try?”

“Only two ways out, now, and one is the way you came in. The other is, you head west on National, right up there…”

He pointed at a cross road, two blocks away.

“…Then turn left on Fox road, that goes south then turns west. Uh, then hit highway five, and go north-west. You’ll hit Martinsville… if it’s not overrun. We haven’t heard from them in a couple of days, but they were holding on. State forty or Interstate seventy may be clear that far west, or at least not a kill zone, like here. That’ll take you toward Effingham… Sorry I can’t help you more, but that’s the only way I see you heading to Decatur.”

Tom thanked him, and headed back south, turning on National Road, as suggested. Two miles further, and the turn south on Fox road came up. Tom took it, and eventually it dead ended into CR5, which was called Arlington road, as it approached Martinsville.

“I’m starting to see a pattern here…” Tom said, as the large piles of orangish dirt, covering the road, came into view. They stretched fifty feet past the road on either side, and were at least eight or nine feet high at the peaks. From the pattern and shape of the piles, it was obvious that a dump truck had deposited them, each against the other, forming a wall of dirt. The blockade stretched far enough into the tilled fields on either side of the road, that only a serious off-road vehicle could get around it.

“Well, what now?” Jordan Parks asked.

Maresa replied. “Keep heading west… or northwest, whatever gets us closer to home.”

Tom stopped in the road, intentionally away from dwellings or other likely hiding places, still a quarter mile from the dirt wall. He turned off the van, not wanting to waste gas idling. “Guys, we are down to a half dozen granola bars, three or four bottled waters and some bubble gum… I am personally out of cash, my business card was declined when we got gas. The guy said he hadn’t had any cards work in two days.”

“I have a hundred and twenty-five or so, if we need it for gas, food, bullets, whatever… I just want to get home. Is there really another option? We keep trying, right? What else can we do?”

“Maresa, I know you want to be home, I know… but if we keep hitting roadblocks and running into greenies, we may not make it. All the cash in the world can’t buy us stuff from stores that only sell to locals, you know? We got three quarters of a tank left, plenty to get us home if not for all this shit. But driving around in circles? It’s only going to get us four or five hours of that.”

Maresa pushed her head against the seat-back in front of her, growling in aggravation. Jordan turned and reached back, putting a consoling hand on her shoulder.

“I have a daughter and two grandsons waiting for me, I’m not giving up either… But staying alive and safe, we have to do that too, right?”

“Yes, of course…” Maresa sat up, wiping away a tear or three. “…So, what are our options?”

Parks shrugged. “One, we keep going, keep looking for a way through. If we can’t before the gas runs out, we start walking… People walk that far, I mean it may take days, but it can be done…”

“That is not an option I like…” Tom cut in, shaking his head. “Dealing with greenies… looters, desperate people, it takes resources, like the weapons we have. Between what I brought and the stuff we have picked up, it’s like fifty or sixty pounds. Then we would need shelter, can’t just sleep on the ground, I mean you can, but… Then there is the food, we have essentially none, hiking long distances takes calories, like three thousand a day, that’s for you normal sized people… Then again, I could lose a pound or two I guess.”

Maresa smiled. “Ok, so walking is a last resort, not a plan, per se. What else?”

Tom put his serious face back on. “Get fuel where we can… as in, ‘borrow’ it, same with food. This of course has it’s own issues, like getting arrested or shot for stealing, or attacked by greenies trying to get it. This should be a last resort as well, though maybe before walking.”

“You two will have to do the ‘borrowing’ if it becomes necessary, being darkly complected, as I am, people may tend to shoot first and not even ask questions.”

“I don’t know if a guy wearing an Armani suit is gonna get shot on sight, even if he is black...” Tom ribbed.

“Brooks Brothers, Armani is a little out of my range.”

Even Maresa chuckled at this, then she sighed. “Now I have to call Alden again… and tell him that we, again, can’t get home when I said we would. We are so damn close, this really is just… shit!”

“Easy there, potty mouth, quarter in the swear jar now.” Tom said, sweetly.

Maresa called home, made as little a deal of the further delay as she could. At the same time, she was afraid Alden was downplaying his injuries, but what could she say.

The three decided to go off-map, taking any road that happened to be going in the general direction they needed to go. These consisted of private and forestry roads, back alleys, tractor paths and one trail that could only be described as someone’s driveway (it happened to span the gap between two gravel roads). During this, the van had to be reversed no less than twenty times, to get out of dead ends, road blocks and un-drivable conditions.

Finally, with an eighth tank of gas left, they ran into a major road. The GPS told them it was Illinois state road 40, but a nearby sign said Cumberland Road and Cumberland road was mess. 40 was supposed to be four lane, but cars were jammed up at least eight or nine across, all heading west. But they weren’t heading anywhere, it was a parking lot. The actual lanes were stacked tight, on the shoulder cars were more haphazard, most with tires sunk in the soft soil, down to the frame.

“Where is everyone?” Maresa asked.

Nobody answered for a minute, as Tom edged the van closer. The doors of some vehicles were open, the windows of many others were broken.

“No place good, I don’t think.” Jordan finally replied.

“Why didn’t they turn down side roads, like this one… get the hell out of there?” Tom muttered, then answered himself. “I bet some did, but it happened too fast.”

By this time they had pulled up within a hundred feet of the main road, on their perpendicular one, and could see both ways down 40. To the east, cars covered all available real-estate to the top of the next hill, at least a mile away. Looking eastward was no better, the road curved right, till it disappeared behind trees and brush and the parking lot followed it out of sight.

“So… greenies attacked here? Pulled people out of their cars… killed them? All these people?” Maresa choked on her tears.

Through the window of a Greyhound bus, in the middle of the road, a face appeared staring out at them. The window smashed outward and a thin, shirtless, green skinned man tumbled out onto the roof of an SUV next to the bus.

“Shit, let’s go.” Tom said, squealing the tires in reverse. He executed a partial Rockford turn, and completed the one-eighty with more tire spin. In a soybean field to their right, two ghouls stood up from their meal to look at them, one screamed a sickening scream. The thing started running toward them but fell face-first over one of the crop rows.

“Slow down, Tom… they can’t catch us on foot, no use wasting the gas.” Jordan Parks said loudly, over the gunned engine.

“Yeah, yeah I know, it’s just… Fuck, where is the fucking military, huh? They could handle this, kill these things, you know?”

“I’m afraid they are fighting on too many fronts and held up by too many engagement rules. Remember, these are still US citizens, they still have rights and everything.”

“So do murderers, but cops can shoot them dead, if they are caught in the act, right?... Maresa, you ok?”

She sat on the second row bench seat, behind Jordan, hugging herself in a near fetal position, eyebrows raised perpetually. She didn’t answer aloud, but slowly shook her head.

Jordan attempted consolation, but it sounded hollow. “It’s gonna be ok, Mare… we’re gonna be fine, we know better than to get stuck in traffic like… We’ll be fine.”

As darkness fell, they drove along, through more back roads, heading ever north west. Radio stations in the Styx were often rare or weak, but they had gone hours without being able to find even one. Finally, sometime after eight, the scan stopped on a low numbered AM frequency & a young man’s voice crackled the revelation that DC had been lost. Sounding not much older than Maresa’s own daughter and calling himself ‘B-man’ he continued to chronicle a particularly bleak reality that he said was being white-washed by the media.

B-man “…and it’s not just DC, we all know most major cities are gone. We are now learning the army has given up it’s containment philosophy, and is now moving to what they call, internally, a ‘castle defense’. They will attempt to locate un-infected populations and build defenses around them… The idea is to create islands of safety in a sea of disaster. This will fail, of course, they can’t defend an area from outside attack and also stop the spread of green-ism inside. This corrupt society is paying for all the…”

“Enough of that shit.” Tom snapped, smashing the radio power button with his meaty fist. “Kid doesn’t know shit, probably made half of it up.”

“I don’t know, all sounds plausible really…”

Tom cleared his throat, interrupting the response. He turned back to look at Jordan, and gave him a WTF face, motioning toward Maresa, who still sat quietly crying.

All silent quiet, nobody wanting to say what everyone knew. That everything pretty much sucked, darkness was falling hard, the gas light was going to go on at any minute, greenies were everywhere, roads were blocked and the world had pretty much taken a big shit on itself.

Finally, Tom spoke up. “You know, we should ditch this piece of shit & get a vehicle with all the doors, huh?”


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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sat Nov 24, 2012 1:15 am

35.

A creaking sound woke Tomaz, his hand shot instinctively under the pillow, where his CZ-75 lay sleeping. In the second it took for his senses to fully recover, he was aiming it at his partner’s head.

“Fuckin’ take it easy there, Taz!” Flowers covered his face with one hand and moved quickly behind the door frame.

“Sorry… I was having that dream, the one where those brain dead greenies were breaking into the house. That damn squeaky hinge sounded just like one of their screams… Hey, at least I didn’t shoot you! Ha ha ha!”

“Yeah, at least. You coulda hit me somewhere that hurts though, be careful. So, I was gonna wake you, they are reporting that DC fell… Nothing concrete yet, but sounds pretty solid to me.”

“Interesting, they may actually try to take it back, hurts the pride to lose your capitol.”

“Maybe, but damn, it’s only a few days off from the model, right? Pretty impressive.”

“Yes, but again, it’s symbolic more than anything, no real strategic value… Then again, I’m not sure what strategic value 270 Kestrel Ave. has either.” Tomaz laughed.

“The man thinks it’s got value, then it’s got value. Anyway, I’m heading out for my ‘jog’. You got the monitor, I got radio, gun, cigarettes.” Flowers said, putting on his tennis shoes. “Double check me, make sure I can pass a cursory inspection, if I get stopped by police.”

Tomaz looked him over closely, and not seeing anything that would draw attention, he pulled the pack of cigarettes from his pocket and tossed them on the table. “Runners are healthy people, they don’t smoke, dumbass!”

“Fuck off Taz, I’ll smoke two when I get back.”

“Good bye, and don’t let the door hit you in your ass.”

“It’s ‘in THE ass’ don’t let it hit you in the ass, not in YOUR ass.” Flowers chuckled.

“I know, but you would probably like a door IN your ass, right? Now go!”

Randal Flowers trotted south on Kestrel, then turned right at Goshawk, the direction the Steelers fan had turned. In his mind, this alone was enough to write the guy off as a neighbor & no threat. A visitor from outside the community would have turned left, toward the exit, not right, to go further in.

Egret was the first side road, a short stub ending in a culdesac, as most of the side roads were. Of the five houses on Egret, only two had a car in the drive. The others either parked in the garage, or were not home. He noted no large Asian men outside any of the houses either. After circling the culdesac, he was back on Goshawk, which looped the entire neighborhood then ran into itself east of Kestrel.

Flowers was in good shape for a thirty-six year old and the slow jog was easily sustained. He could have probably doubled his speed, but observating, as he called it, was best done at a leisurely pace. Joggers were not exactly common in Thrushwood Estates but neither were they so uncommon. He looked the part, in full spam apparel, with reflective logos like a real runner, and matching AirMax shoes. A glock 26 was nestled snugly in a custom compartment, in the lower section of his small hydration back-pack. A miniature two-way radio pretended to be an MP3 player, strapped to his left arm.

In and out of branching dead end roads he jogged, not finding many cars parked outside the homes. Cockatoo Way was his sixth detour from the main loop, and it was promising. A black pickup was backed into the drive of the third house, but without being able to see the license or the telltale decal, he could not be sure it was the Asian’s.

Not wanting to loiter too long, Flowers finished the slow circuit of the culdesac, and returned to Goshawk. He quickly formulated a plan, seeing a fairly wide swath of trees and high underbrush extending back around the four houses on Cockatoo. He would peel off the sidewalk into the trees and sneak around behind the house, probably have windows with open shades in the rear. If he could see Mr. Asian dude, he could call it a night.

A few minutes later, he was near the back corner of the first house. He breathed slow and deep, to keep his breath sounds from masking any noise he was making, you can’t fix it if you can’t hear it. The pine needles made a low crunch when steeped on, but he knew the sound died quickly in the knee high brush between him and the houses. A dog in a screened in porch stood and perked up his ears, Flowers slowed a bit more, but kept going. His movement sounds were so steady and quiet, the animal eventually lost interest and started scratching his ear.

Another few minutes and he was behind the house that had the pickup in front. Unfortunately, the windows in back had curtains drawn as well, must be the paranoid type, after all, who would be back there looking in? Well, other than Randal Flowers. Just then, the door to a shed he had not noticed, creaked open. Out walked the Asian, he had a tool box or something of that size, under one arm, keys in the other hand. He locked the shed and headed for the house in the dark.

Flowers shifted his weight ever so gently, having been caught in an unsteady position when the man came out. The Asian stopped mid stride, and slowly turned toward him, leaning forward as if being an extra six inches closer might help him see something thirty yards away, in the shade of the trees, behind thick bushes. He scanned the area around Randal for almost a minute, he then slowly raised his hand up to his eyes. Flowers assumed he would shade them from the quarter moon, to see better into the dark, but he didn’t. Instead he aimed two fingers toward his eyes, then aimed them back out, right at Flowers, the old- I’m watching you! gesture. He then nodded slowly and continued to the house, looking back as he walked.

“Fuckin weird motherfucker.” Flowers muttered in a whisper, after the Asian man was well inside, door closed & bolted.

A half hour later, he was back at 271 Kestrel, explaining to Tomaz what had happened. They agreed the man was probably not a threat, but that he should be looked into further, if it could be done quietly & safely.

“Seriously though, guy was fuckin’ weird, ya know?” Flowers reiterated, before heading off to bed for a short rest.

“Yeah, yeah, he looked at you, he’s got ninja powers or something, go to bed.”

“Fuck you man, I’m tellin ya he’s weird!”

“Good night Flowers.”


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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 2:42 am

36. (part one)


Drucker woke to the annoying beeep beeep beeep of his alarm clock. He was usually up long before it’s non-dulcet tones had a chance to chime but the previous night had been a long one, even amongst the recent run long nights. He pushed back the thoughts of DC.

Inside ten minutes he was dressed and looking for coffee. He wondered if there was a caffeine shot he could get in the morning to save time, just have the doctor inject… He realized it was only lack of sleep making such a thought seem less ridiculous than it should have… and realizing it showed he still had all his faculties, good to go. Greatest single twenty-four hour loss of US military personnel since… Pushed it back.

A coffee and egg on a English muffin later, Drucker walked into the conference room that had been turned into an Intel gathering point. Maps, lists and photos covered most of the west wall. Four large screens in the front showed a news station and three live camera feeds from different besieged areas. Large tables set up in a C shape, held makeshift workstations with laptops and PC setups.

From these stations, vast banks of linked government mainframes, each accessing all available and current data, are controlled. Search algorithms were entered, all parallels redirected to search anew, all correlations flagged and investigated further. The companies involved were shadowy constructs, devoid of traceable ownership but there were always other people and companies involved. Money trails, financing paperwork, advertising expenditures, all cross-referenced in an attempt to expose those involved.

He stepped over the snaking extension cords on the floor. A couple of lower level analysts stood to salute, Drucker tilted his head and gave them the look, they sheepishly resumed their work. Looking around, it seemed like progress was being made, but Drucker knew time was running out. He cleared his throat, drawing the attention of all in the room.

“You all are aware of what happened last night, I assume… The thing is, we need names, we need to get the people behind this, before…”

His drawn, grey visage conveyed what he didn’t say, didn’t need to say. They were losing ground every day, only a few containment zones were holding out. Most were expanding at best, falling apart at worst. Overall troop strength was down fourteen percent, and precipitously falling.

“…We have a limited window of time. There are other entities on this, of course, CIA, FBI, the whole alphabets of agencies.” The grizzled general spoke with quiet emotion. “But we are uniquely suited for this shit, none of the other guys have multi-level research, intel gathering and the juice to make shit happen, all under one roof.” Grim faces nodded in agreement.

“The last, best hope of earth, we may not have always lived up to that… But now, it’s not some vague allegory meant to drum up nationalism…” The general locked eyes with a few, as though measuring their trustworthiness.

“…This doesn’t go out of this room, but I feel we may have only a week or so, before our national military is too fractured and weak to mount any sort of meaningful defense, much less counterattack whoever brought this shit to us. We need a fucking address, we need people we can go grab… and make them talk… And we need it today, shit, we need it last week.” A female annalist was crying quietly, she pretended to blow her nose to wipe off the tears then she quickly composed herself.

Drucker looked around for a moment then headed for the door. Not turning, he said. “We attrited another 30 troops while I was blathering… get back on it.”

The lift was massive, constructed to haul heavy equipment down into the base during it’s construction. Drucker hated using it, rumbling, creaking behemoth that it was. But the smaller lifts were at the ends of each wing, a ten minute walk from where he was, IF nobody stopped him on the way for a powwow.

The twelve ton door swung slowly, accompanied by the whine of electrical and hydraulic motors, and the deep bass resonant creak of the massive hinges. He released the button, stopping it when it was just open enough to slip in, only a small fraction of it’s full arc. Inside the cavernous box, he punched the big number 4 button & braced for the drop. Giant gears clacked faster and faster against their tracks, more of a controlled fall than a decent, till it started decelerating. Supposedly the first half of any ride was at .5 G’s and the last half was at 1.5g’s, the transition could buckle your knees if you weren’t paying attention.

The huge bay door of level four was already open, annoying Drucker at first. Till he realized it was not a breach of protocol by some lazy supply stocker, but Devin McCloyd welcoming him.

“To what do I owe the honor of this visit, Sir?” McCloyd asked loudly, over the machine noise.

“Just checking in, wanted to see what you were up to.” The last few words Drucker spoke too loud, after the abrupt ending of the cacophony.

“Do we need to adjust some of our cameras, Sir?” McCloyd alluded to the dozens of HD cameras that allowed Drucker (and any upper echelon) to view the goings-on. Drucker took it as a polite way of saying ‘what the fuck are you doing down here, when you spy on us all day already!’

“No… nothing like that Devin, I just want to see, with my own eyes.”

“Anything in particular, sir?”

“Yeah, I want to see us win something, can you show me that?” Drucker said quietly.

“Hmmm… I might be able to come up with something.”

A few minutes later Drucker was sitting in an observation room, looking through a thick Polycarbonate window, into a metal walled room. Presently a door opened that had looked like part of the wall a moment before. From the darkness inside, a hand grasped the edge of the opening and a green face emerged.

The greenie was young, maybe 20, shaggy haired, a kid really. But the eyes betrayed it’s brutality before any actions. They snapped from place to place, animal-like searching, whether for prey or predator it was hard to say. It looked right past the general, causing him to conclude it was one-way glass.

Then another door opened, and someone in a fencing outfit entered. Drucker knew it was not a fencing outfit, but that’s what it looked like. It was certainly some high level contaminant resistant suit, augmented with Kevlar or some other damage resistant outer material. The full-face silver mesh mask covered another mask of clear plastic and a hump in the lumbar area showed the location of the re-breather unit.

Right away the greenie lunged for the man, Drucker realized after only one quick parry, the man was Devin McCloyd. The loon was in a cage match with a greenie, the general hopped it was not solely for his entertainment.

The thing twisted surprisingly fast, cat-like even, grabbing at Devin’s hand. He quickly pulled it away and the greenie grabbed only air. It fell back, off balance but was quickly up and after McCloyd again. This creature was faster than any the general had seen.

McCloyd and the greenie were about the same height & build, but Drucker knew McCloyd was all muscle, being heavier than he looked. Devin and the beast locked up, pro-wrestler style. The Lanky captain twisted the things right arm all the way around with his left, then snapped his right fore-arm across into the monster’s in-turned elbow with great force. The snap sound was audible even through the thick window, the thing’s arm bent the wrong way. Then McCloyd’s voice came through a speaker, obviously piped in from a mic in his headgear.

“That dislocation took at least five times the force it would have taken…” He paused to duck a lunge by the now injured and enraged greenie. “…if he had not been… infected.”

Sidestepping, Devin shot out a foot, tripping the thing. It sprawled across the floor but was up again quickly, though it seemed slightly more hesitant before the next attack, as though assessing it’s foe. It circled left, the white ninja slowly turned to keep facing it.

“This guy was an amateur kick boxer in life… or he was infected, whatever.” Devin said, between slightly faster breaths. The sneaky beast shot out a hand, grabbing at McCloyd’s face, which he easily dodged since the arm was floppy and uncontrolled. But the thing snatched the material of the ‘bite suit’ with it’s other hand, hanging on tight, even as Devin twisted that arm around.

“That should have… dislodged his… grip, but they hold on like… pit-bulls.” The monster’s good arm was now outside of McCloyd’s and at an odd angle, but it wouldn’t let go. It tried to pull him in, to bite at his face, but was rebutted by Devin’s position changes, keeping the bent arm between them. In one quick move, the captain locked his hand over the greenie’s so it couldn’t let go, then somehow swung his right knee up and over, bringing his whole body weight down on the thing’s trapped arm. They both went to the floor, the green arm now a crooked broken mess. The crack of the bone sounded almost like snapping steel.

Even with both arms more or less useless, it lunged again, almost making it to the mask. Devin caught it’s snapping jaw in his gloved hand.

“Wooo… close one!” McCloyd laughed. It fought to get close enough to bite, till Devin released the throat and snatched the thing’s long hair, using it’s forward momentum to slam the open mouthed beast into the concrete floor. The smack of skin and bone to cement was sickening but the damage was minor, at least visibly. But the creature seemed slightly dazed, shaking it’s head.

Devin jumped quickly to his feet, the thing lunged at him uselessly. Using it’s dislocated arm, it worked it’s way back to standing, the other arm hung from it’s shoulder, like a sock full of broken sticks.

“This guy only turned two days ago, the bones are not yet…” The thing ran at him, cutting him off. He sidestepped but the beast almost bit his shoulder, seeming to anticipate the move.

“…Not fully green yet, if he was a week old greenie, the arm wouldn’t have broken at all…” It jumped at him, fully committed to the attack. McCloyd raised his left knee like a piston, meeting the monster’s face. The head snapped back while the body continued forward, sliding on it’s knees.

“He may be fresh and weak as far as greenies go, but he’s still coming even after those last two strikes, *huff puff* anyone un-infected would have been out cold… or worse.”

As soon as the greenie stumbled to it’s feet again, he was put down. A high front kick to the center of the chest knocked it backwards onto it’s ass.

“Look at him, just growling at me… should be crying like a bitch holding his broken sternum.” Another rush by the creature, this time met by a spinning back kick, connecting to the forehead. A full ‘clothes-line’ resulted, and it’s head smacked cement again. It was very slow to get up the next time.

“I think it’s learning… trying to figure me out… But it’s also weighing outcome versus danger… or pain, or something.”

The thing was breathing like a forge bellows, and not nearly as quick to charge. McCloyd feigned a lunge, the beast actually flinched, then took a single step back.

“There you go sir… A victory, a small one sure, but he just conceded defeat, basically.” The greenie reached up, pawing at it’s bloody face, smearing the dark fluid across it’s cheeks and neck.

The general spoke up. “Can you hear me in there, Devin?” The monster looked around curiously, trying to locate the un-seen source of the voice.

“Yup…” Devin said, taking another quick step forward. The creature hissed loudly, jutting it’s chest out in a fruitless attempt at intimidation.

“This has been very interesting Mr. McCloyd, but very few of our troops are fucking Kung-Fu masters, You know?”

The kung-fu master relaxed a bit, and turned to look into what was a mirror on his side. “It’s more of a conceptual understanding… they aren’t infallible… Not perfect killing machines.”

“So, how is this applicable to beating them exactly, large scale?”

“It gets it in your head…” Devin paused, then screamed at the thing. It was a deep primal sound, brought up from his toes. The beaten greenie recoiled in apparent fear, backing into a corner.

“…that they CAN be beaten.”

The general was impressed, but mainly with Devin’s badass-ness. “If only that translated into…”

His train of thought was interrupted by his peeping phone. After answering he rushed out of the room.

“Sir?... Translated into what?” McCloyd said, to an empty chair.
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:24 am

36. (part 2)


Back in the information center, as they were calling it, Drucker was joined by Joel Redbrave.

“This could be it, sir. This guy has three points of correlation… education & profession both relate to the tech, close association with foreign nationals, and the factor that brought him to our attention in the first place… Direct relationship with an individual who’s name keeps popping up in all this.”

“Sounds good, Joel. I want him in MY interrogation room, yesterday.” Drucker said, with emphasis on the yesterday.

“Yes sir, local FBI and CIA there can…”

“I don’t think so, I want people I can trust. You know how some of those fuckin’ spooks are, if they figure out why we want this guy, they’ll take it over for the glory.”

“But it’s six hundred miles away, Sir… And we don’t exactly have a combat team at the ready, here.”

“We can make it work somehow. I wouldn’t mind sending McCloyd, guy can get shit done.” The general muttered, deep in thought. “What else do we have on this guy? Any idea of weapons or training?”

“No sir, no criminal record, no registered firearms, residential area, in all appearances a family man. One thing I noticed though, the fifty or sixty miles surrounding his location might be the largest green-free zone in the US, as far as populated areas. Simplifies grabbing him to some degree… but what a coincidence.”

“Implication being, someone who started… or controlled this shit might intentionally avoid putting greenies in their own back yard, interesting.” The general said, rubbing his chin stubble.

“Bottom line, I want a team we can trust, on the ground there before nightfall, today. And if he will do it, I want McCloyd with them… He can start cracking this guy’s nuts in route back here, not have to wait. Let me know what you come up with, inside of an hour.”

Redbrave’s eyes seemed stuck in perpetual wide-open surprise, even as the general dismissed him. A competent and trustworthy extraction team, from scratch, combat ready and in the air, by… Looking at his watch, lunch time, fuck. He immediately contacted Devin McCloyd, who accepted the mission before Joel finished asking. McCloyd also had ideas on flight crew, which he would get back to Redbrave on, quickly. The ex-spook also suggested Redbrave locate a willing combat medic for the trip, for obvious and not so obvious reasons.
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 11:07 am

36. (part 3)

Timothy Lazingo had come into the base blindfolded, four days before… maybe five days, it was hard to say. They had his watch and phone and no sunlight was ever visible. The first twenty-four hours was sitting alone, receiving MRE’s through a slot in the door, from guys in level A hazmat suits.

Then he met captain McCloyd, who spent three days on and off, interrogating him about every moment of his encounter with doomed cruise ship, Paridisio and every greenie he had observed. It was not a hostile interrogation in the slightest, Zingo, as he was known to his friends, came to even enjoy talking to the cheerful captain. But it was plain to see they didn’t give two shits about getting him back to his own base any time soon.

The feedback Zingo received from outside was minimal, enough that he had a general idea of how bad the shit was, not much more. When he asked why he, a navy lieutenant, was being debriefed (debriefed being what McCloyd generously called it) by the army, he was informed separation of the military branches had become a hindrance to success in the broader mission of stopping the greenies. This tidbit alone was enough info to tell him shit had gone south in a big way.

Finally, after McCloyd seemed satisfied Tim’s brain held no more relevant info, he was to be cut loose. Lazingo gathered what personal effects he was allowed, and said goodbye to the crappy little room he had lived in for the past few days. Then, at the last minute, two quick knocks and in came McCloyd.

“Hey sailor, ready to hit the road?”

“Uh… yeah, didn’t expect a big send-off.”

“Well, I wanted to throw something at you before you took off, we need a flight crew for a mission… An important mission.”

“How important, sir?”

“You have to be EOD, Top to receive that information… So if you agree to the mission, general Redbrave has authorized you that clearance.”

“And if I don’t agree, I will never know what it was, huh?”

“Not unless your buddy Chisholm tells you, after he gets back. But he’s not supposed to, since you don’t have clearance.”

“He agreed?” Lazingo asked, surprised.

“Without hesitation.” McCloyd lied.

“Fuck it, I’m in.”

McCloyd then visited Laramie Chisholm’s room and employed the same ruse. The two men met up later after the mission briefing, at procurement, where they realized the deception.

Lazingo shrugged, as he picked out a desert tan SCAR & Springfield Custom 1911. “Eh, I probably would have signed up anyway… Fuckin’ guy is pretty slick though, right?”

“He’s coming along, you know.” Laramie said, grabbing the lightest, shortest M4 he could find & a Glock 21 with belt and holster.

“Yes, yes I am.” Devin McCloyd said, appearing out of nowhere, behind them. “I would prefer you to use these…” He said, handing each man a holstered pistol, wrapped in a rigger’s belt, sporting full quad mag pouches. He pointed over to a rack full of gear. “We have drop-legs over there, by the other rigging.”

“You like sneaking up on folks, don’t ya?” Laramie asked.

“Not really, I should try to make more noise when approaching friendlies…”

Upon examination, the men saw the weapons were FN Five-Sevens, Lazingo asked. “Why the five point seven, makes kind of a small hole…”

“Yes, but your four forty-five ACP will generally not make any hole at all. With greenies, larger caliber pistol rounds often impact only on the surface or bounce off unless it hits the softest tissue. Neck or eyes are really the only way to penetrate deep enough to be fatal, with larger slower rounds. Ten millimeter works better, but finding reliable weapons in that caliber is harder.”

The two men looked at each other, eyebrows raised. Lazingo asked “How do we know this, exactly… best ways to kill them and all?”

Smiling up at the taller man, McCloyd said “That’s what I do… You guys ready?”

They nodded, then headed out to meet the rest of their company.




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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:32 pm

37.

“Hi, my name is Mathew Klein. I am, what you call, a ‘greenie’ but I don’t kill… or eat people, or try to spread the green disease. You see, not all greenies are the same.” Mathew paused for dramatic effect, putting the most sincere smile he could, on his clean shaven green face. “I am not the only one either, many others are normal but green. Yes, we are contagious but we have intentionally quarantined ourselves… We have tried to communicate with the government, but they just won’t listen. Myself and a few dozen others are here, at Stateville Correctional. You have probably seen it in the news, but they never mention we are normal, ever. Did you know? Did you have any idea there were greenies like me? Surrounded by a military that wants to blow us all to pieces, though we haven’t hurt anyone?”

Klein looked down at some papers for a second, then continued in earnest. “All I, all we want to do is, not be killed… we would be happy to go into whatever quarantine the army wants. But they won’t talk to us… and the only reason they haven’t mowed us down with machineguns is, the news media is outside. But the military won’t let us talk to reporters or even let them know we aren’t the same as the others, those animals attacking people. Going on YouTube like this, is the only way we can let everyone know the truth…”

“They will say we are convicts, bad people, regardless of how this different strain of green disease has let us remain normal, mentally. Well, yes, some of us ARE prisoners, but some are not, I’m not. I worked for the CDC, you can Google me, just a regular guy who was in the wrong place wrong time. And the ones that are prisoners? They are just people, like you… but who have made mistakes. Most of them have served the majority of their time and most are not violent offenders. This prison had a major riot just four days ago, a lot of the real bad guys killed each other then. We are what’s left, just people, trying to survive, like you!” He slowly shook his head, lightly biting his bottom lip. He leaned forward a little closer to the camera. “We just want people to know we are here, that we exist, that we are NOT evil monsters… Move that camera over & show the guys.”

Mathew motioned to his right, the unseen camera man followed. A group of men came into frame, the best looking twenty-five inmates Russell Weisz could find, shampooed and shaved, hair combed. As many of them as possible were dressed in stolen guard uniforms and off-duty clothes. Only a half dozen had prison uniforms, each of those men were the smallest, least threatening looking guys available. The group looked downright pitiful, any viewer with a heart would feel for these poor men.

Mathew Klein walked over to the group and joined them. The camera jiggled & zoomed in some as he continued, still standing.

“Normal people, just regular guys… Joey here (motioning at a particularly friendly looking inmate) he’s got three kids at home & a wife who misses him.”

The identified man waved and said “Hi Cindy! I hope I will be home soon.”

“We have prison guards here too, mixed right in with the prisoners, cause we are all in this together… Phil here, for instance.” Matt pointed at the man in a guard uniform. He stepped forward and robotically read from what was obviously a written q-card to the left of the camera.

“I am a guard, as Mathew has said. These is good men here, all prisoners were friendly with me, every day. When the panic started, some of these men saved me from the bad inmates, the ones who later killed each other.” Sweat dripped down the man’s face. He attempted a big smile that twitched a little too much.

The camera moved and zoomed in on Mathew’s face. “Please, just don’t lump us in with the rest of the greenies.” He sniffled a bit, wiping phantom crocodile tears. “We don’t mean anyone any harm. Please, if you can, contact the military, Chicago law enforcement, your state or national representative, or anyone else who might help us. We are people, like you, scared of all the stuff going on, and unable to get any help from the government. Thank you for listening and god bless, please send this message to as many friends as you can.”

Mathew Klein nodded politely as the video ended. Weisz finished watching it for the third time, he turned back to Matt and Tully. The latter was a young convict who had used the internet to swindle little old ladies out of their savings, he was the gangs unofficial computer expert.

“That is a professional lookin’ piece right there, fucking nice. That is exactly what I wanted.” The video had been posted for only fifteen minutes, and already had 312 views, 29 likes and 7 dislikes. Tully reached over and refreshed the screen, the numbers changed to 357, 33 and 9 respectively.

“Almost four hundred people looked at this thing already, that kicks ass!” The young computer nerd cried.

“Good fuckin’ job, son… Now do whatever it is you can do, to really spread it around, make it a virus.” Weisz slapped a hand on Tully’s shoulder, hard enough to even make a greenie flinch. Then pushed him into the seat he had just vacated.

“The term is ‘go viral’ sir, not make it a virus. Viral means it becomes very popu…”

Weisz interrupted him by grabbing his neck and spinning him around to face the monitor. “Sounds great kid, but I don’t need to know how ya do it, do I? If I did, I wouldn’t need ya… right?”

The last part sounded quite ominous, so Tully’s only reply was a slow nod & to start quickly typing.

The greenie gang leader gave Mathew the ‘walk with me’ head move. Matt followed him out into the hall. Once they were out of ear-shot & alone in the hall, Weisz stopped and put his hands on his hips.

“Matty my friend, you are a fucking natural, the camera loves you.”

“Sir, you’re exaggerating, all I…”

“No more ‘sir’ Matty. I’m Wise, just Wise.” He said, smiling.

The conflict inside Mathew Klein’s head was epic. Flattered, horrified, proud, pissed off and feelings of elitism all battled for supremacy.

“Matty, you write all that shit yourself?” Weisz asked, with a chuckle.

“Yeah… well, I stole some from speeches I found on line, Hoffa, Gandhi, Obama… But I put it all together, made it work for us.”

“Did you see… well, hear what Tully did with the sound? No tinkle crack sounds with your talking, he cut the high frequencies or something.” Weisz asked.

Mathew’s eyebrows rose. “Holy shit, so we sound more like normal, that’s genius.”

“Yup, normal greenies, that’s what we are.” Weisz said, chuckling.

“Not to cast aspersions, but are people really gonna buy this? The authorities will just come out and say all the things we’ve done, probably say we are worse than the cannibal greenies.” Matt said, hoping he didn’t cross a line & end up beat to hell.

“That’s the cool part, Matty, It doesn’t matter once enough people see our video… It’s like in court, reasonable doubt, that’s all we need. The government already looks bad, hell, a lot of people think they made this shit happen… Some fuckin’ bio-weapon got loose or medical testing went haywire. A little suggestion that we’re the victim in this and a shitload of people, who already don’t trust the feds, will buy right in.”

“And if they don’t?”

“That’s why we’re makin ‘the bus’.” Weisz said with a more evil than normal, grin.

“Why do you say ‘the bus’ all heavy like that?

“Have you seen what Mr. Chung has done with that mother fucker?”

A few minutes later Weisz and Klein were walking to the motor pool. It was less walking and more sprinting from cover spot to cover spot. Tractors, hay bales, dumpsters and assorted piles of refuse dotted the path, protecting the ‘normal greenies’ from the prying eyes of snipers, as they crossed.

Once inside the poorly lit Quonset hut, Mathew saw ‘the bus’ and it didn’t look much different than when it was just, the bus. Mr. Chung was in the rear of the bus, banging away on something metal.

“So… what all did he do?”

Weisz rubbed his hands together like a hungry fat kid about to eat ice cream. “That, my friend, is the beauty! Doesn’t look any different, right?”

“Maybe the holes, there…”

“Check out the inside!” Weisz cut him off, almost giddy with pride.

As Mathew got closer to the vehicle, he noticed the double reflection on some of the windows, another layer was behind the exterior glass. Walking up the door steps he saw a secondary door, made of thick transparent material. “Is this where all the windows from inside went?”

“You got it! That’s half inch lexan, times four… It’s here, and behind all the windows. The windshield is six layers. Down below, porcelain tiles, spring steel, green board, whatever we could find. The thing is heavy as shit now, probably drive like a tank, but unless you get close…”

Mathew Klein nodded. “…Close up, the subterfuge won’t last, but at a glance the bus will appear to be normal.”

“That’s it! Buy us time, get us past the feds.”

“We all can’t fit in this thing, especially now that it’s smaller inside with all the bullet proof stuff, so…”

“You gotta pay attention to your surroundings Matty.” The lanky gang leader swept his arm toward some other vehicles further back in huge domed structure. A red sports car, a mini-van and a pickup truck were parked on various lifts or with large parts removed. Three men were working on the mini-van, pulling out the back seats.

“So we will split up? Or is it a convoy of Mad Max road warriors…”

“Easy Mathew, can’t give away all my secrets.” Weisz howled with laughter.


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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by Shellyann36 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:26 am

MOAR!!!
Wife to Keith, Mom to Michael (22) David (21) & Anthony (18) Lil Keith (2), Adam & Elijah (8 months)

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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:27 pm

38.

“So… what does that mean ‘liberated’ a dump truck?” Alden asked his wife, the satellite connection was scratchier than usual, sounded like she was down in a well.

“Don’t worry love, we left a note, we will return it after… All this stuff.” Maresa spoke with a certainty he wasn’t used to. But he feared it was sophistry, hiding a deep fear.

Alden could feel she was changed, she had seen things, bad things… He tried to lighten the mood. “Well… whatever you have to do to get home is fine by me. How’re Tom and Jordan, doing ok?”

“Yeah, we’re all good here…” Maresa raised her voice to be heard over the accelerating engine of the big red truck. “Sorry if it’s hard to hear, this thing is a beast!”


Sinotruck- Howo 6x6-
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“So what is the revised ETA?”

Maresa was almost yelling by this time. “Hard to say, this thing only goes around fifty miles an hour, tops. But we just passed through a small town that was normal, no road blocks or gun toting militia men, just wary locals… We’re less than a hundred miles from home… A few hours, if there is no more nonsense.”

Alden choked up a bit, she was so close. “We could load up, meet you half way… Pick you up in like two hours…”

“No, Alden! We got it handled at this end. We have… the equipment, to handle any problems. We are as safe as we can be… I want you and Sam to be safe, too, not out gallivanting… Ok?”

“Yes, yes, I know… keep the home fires burning and all that.”

After a slight delay, Maresa answered. “What? Home-fries?”

“Home fires… it’s, never mind, get home! Love you!!”

And she was off. Alden stared at the phone for a moment, instead of ‘call ended’ or something equally benign, the screen of the fat Globalstar phone read ‘connection terminated’ not cool.

“Was that mom?” Samantha asked, peaking her head around the open door of the master bedroom. She sounded intentionally nonchalant.

“Yup, and she is getting close…”

“How close?” She asked quickly.

“Inside of a hundred miles.” He said with a smile.

Samantha lit up like a Christmas tree, wide smile, eyes wetting. She ran directly into Alden, grabbing him in a bear hug and banging into his, still tender, right leg. He ignored the pain & hugged her tightly. He didn’t mean to cry, didn’t want to be weak in front of Sam, but couldn’t help it.

Sam left to go blog about her mom coming home soon, while Alden made some calls. He had heard through the grape vine that ADM was shutting down the skeleton operation it had been running the past week and sending out pink slips. Having used up most of his emergency sick time already, staying home with Sam, he was almost relived by this. Being let go would suck, certainly but with all that was going on he was hard pressed to see himself going back to work anytime soon.

‘Indefinite mandatory leave’ is what they were calling it, a way to avoid dispensing severance packages for the time being, he assumed. It did seem they couldn’t avoid paying out vacation time, that was something anyway. Most people he talked to predicted the banking system would crumble soon anyway. Wall street was already closed and frozen, what rates there were had risen three fold on loans (that were not being given anyway), but no fold on investments. Alden had pulled all the cash he could & intended to turn some into gold or silver, but had no luck yet finding a seller locally, everyone was holding what they had.

At lunch time he received another progress report, sixty miles to go, no problems. It had been a week, seven days since Maresa left. Alden hoped she was done globetrotting, though he knew her job was important to her.

A knock on the door snapped him out of his deep thoughts. Looking through the window beside the door, he saw a scowling Lester Hynemin. Alden had grown to appreciate the man over the past couple of days, helping as much as he had, after the nasty fall.

“Lester, why so glum?” Alden asked, letting the big man in.

Lester let out a sigh & shook his head. “Getting nasty out there, Alden. The Kelly’s got robbed last night, animals… Three young guys, one had a gun, had Carl on the floor… gun at his head!”

“Holy shit… last night?”

“Yup, were thinking of getting the gate back working… maybe reinforce it some, you know, just in case.” The neighborhood had a gated entrance, but the actual gate had not worked in years. It was ornamental anyway, lightweight aluminum or something.

Alden retrieved two cups and poured them full of ice water, not asking Lester, since that is what he always wanted. He scrunched up his face at the thought of locking down the small community. “Lock us all in here, because of one robbery?... Was anyone hurt?”

“No, luckily the assholes only wanted a TV and some jewelry. They got away clean though, cops took a half hour to get here, they were long gone. Plus, Jed had someone creeping around behind his house last night, probably the same guys though he says it was just one.”

“I guess it wouldn’t be that bad, as long as we can afford someone to run the gate… let in the residents, their friends, and all that.”

Lester sat on the couch, sipping his water. He grinned up at Alden, who was still standing. “A lot of residents are out of work, on leave or have quit their jobs. I think we have a large pool of motivated, volunteer labor to pick from. I’m gonna pass out a signup sheet tomorrow, me and Jed will be on it. You would be good at it I think.”

“Oh… well, I have Sam to look after, Mare is still on the road.” Alden stuttered out.

“Yeah, sorry about that, is she gonna be back soon?”

“Supposed to be, but she was supposed to be yesterday too.”

Awkward silence followed, finally broken when Alden asked “So, have you heard anything about greenies in the area?”

“Thankfully no, not yet… But I’m afraid it’s only a matter of time now. Chicago is one of the last big city holdouts. I think it’s mainly the criminal element there, keeping them at bay. I’ve heard gangs are killing any greenies that find their way into the city. Military supposedly has almost no presence there.”

“Hmmm, I wonder which is worse, greenies or the all-powerful gangs that will be left in the wake of the greenies.”

“Gangs we can handle, greenies though, they just… Damn, have you seen any of the YouTube stuff? Just attacking people, mindless fuc… monsters.” Lester cut himself short, not to get emotional.

“I know man, I’ve seen it, so has Sam unfortunately.” Both men stared at their drinks for a minute.

Lester got up and reached to shake Alden’s hand. “I better get going, Jed wanted me to come over, but he wasn’t there earlier… Stay safe, Alden.”

“Hey, tell him I said thanks for all the… medical help, I guess?”

With that, Lester headed out. Alden spent a half hour doing the stretching exercises Jed had showed him. They were supposed to loosen up his injured leg & get rid of the limp. He wanted to look fit and mostly injury free when Maresa came home, since that was how he had portrayed his condition to her.

He had stuck to Jed’s homeopathic ancient Chinese secret medicine till then, but wanting to be his best, he popped three Advil. After that kicked in, he was actually able to get around the house without being in any real pain, so he and Sam cleaned up some.

At quarter after four, Maresa called and said she and her entourage were passing through Sullivan, only twenty-five miles away, as the crow flies. The town was in good shape, no issues except for a state police checkpoint where they looked over the huge truck’s occupants & luckily not bothering to ask for it’s registration. Samantha heard him talking and came in, grabbing the phone from his hand.


“Mom! You’re close now?” Sam asked into the phone, almost yelling with hopeful energy.

Alden watched a smile appear on her face that had been missing for a while. He patted her lightly on the back.

“Uh huh… Ok… Yeah, we’re doing fine… Yeah, he really is ok!”

Alden listened to the one sided conversation, trying to guess what Maresa was saying… All worried he was on death’s door no doubt.

“…Love you too, see you in a little while. Oh, did you bring me anything?... Just kidding!”

“Gimme that phone you little rat!” Alden said, grabbing the phone and tickling Sam at the same time.

“Me again…” Alden said, leaving Sam in the kitchen for some private words. “When you get home I’m going to hug you for a half hour, Ok?”

Maresa took a few seconds to answer and when she did it was clear she was verclemped. “That sounds good… I really miss you guys, and that stupid dog.”

Alden heard the faint sound of what he thought was far-off thunder, then realized it was some distant heavy machine. It’s bass freqincies just barely audible reverberating through his house,. “Hey! Are you here? Like right down the road? I think I hear your big truck!”

“Uh… no, really babe, we’re still at least a half-hour out, if we get lucky & hit every green light.”

He knew the last bit was mostly humor, as very few traffic lights were still working, mostly they blinked yellow or were turned off altogether. “Well, something is getting closer…”

Alden walked the phone outside and tried to pinpoint the direction of the growing rumble. He had to walk out to the sidewalk to realize the sound was coming from the west. There was still traffic, though much lighter than before the greenies, the occasional semi or souped-up hot rod would break the quite a few times a day. But the new sound was different, if he didn’t know all air traffic was suspended, Alden would have sworn it was a helicopter & not a small one.

“Truck, right you’re in a truck? Not a helicopter?” Alden asked into phone, having to raise his voice over the drone.

Maresa was understandably confused. “Helicopter, no, a big red dumptru… Is that a helicopter I hear by you? I haven’t seen a plane in almost a week, how cool!”

“I guess, except it stopped right over us.”



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Jedediah (Jed) Lieus-
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 9:59 am

39.

“Like hovering, right over our neighborhood?” Maresa asked, while motioning to Jordan Parks to step on the damn gas. Tom was somehow asleep, barely fitting on the narrow berth behind the front seats.

“Well… now it’s kind of drifting toward the Chapel course.” Alden said, meaning the golf course abutting their community. Maresa could hear the phasing rotor sound through the phone.

“This shit is making me nervous, Mare… I wonder if there are greenies in the area… maybe they are chasing them or something.”

“Is it an army helicopter?” She asked.

“Yeah, army, navy, one of those, dark grey or black. I’m going back in, lock everything up…”

“Yeah, batten down the hatches, we will be there soon.”

“I know, we will be waiting… watch your ass on the way in. Oh yeah, they were talking about closing the east gate, don’t think it’s closed yet though...”

“Fine, fine…” Maresa said, interrupting. “Get inside, love you!”

“Already on it, bolting the doors… see you soon love.”

Tom was awake & sticking his head up between the front seats. “What the hell was that about… Did you say a helicopter was over your house?”

“That’s what Al said. I don’t get it, we haven’t seen any airplanes at all, why would they come there, unless there was an outbreak nearby?”

“They wouldn’t…” Jordan said, jumping a curb to go around a few abandoned vehicles.

Tom’s head banged into the unpadded truck roof. “Shit, Jordan… ease up!”

“That’s what I’m saying, easing up is not an option if the military is nosing around there. Gotta be greenies… or… shit I don’t know what, but nothing good.”

Maresa slammed her fist on the dashboard. “Shit! Why is everything so fucking complicated! We go through hell to get here… and the bastards are at my doorstep! Damn it!” She wiped away the tears and growled in frustration.

Backpedaling, Jordan said “Maybe it’s something else… could be they’re just checking out the area… Gathering intel these days may be more eyes on…”

“Just drive as fast as you can, Jordan.” Maresa interrupted.

Jordan had the big Chinese truck’s diesel at redline, the limiter kicked in every few seconds, retarding the ignition till the revs were back in the yellow. The speedometer was bouncing around near seventy and every bump was a cacophony of rattling metal.

They had looked for a new vehicle for almost an hour before settling on the big dumper. Parks had wanted a big SUV or super-cab pickup, Maresa was in favor of anything greenie proof. Most of the vehicles they checked, that fit the bill, were low on fuel or empty, too stuck to pull out, or damaged. Finally they reached the end of the parking lot on highway 40, having been caused by road construction. An open road lay ahead but they were dead out of gas and vehicle prospects. That’s when Tom noticed the dump truck, it had a load of gravel in it but a nearly full tank and was big, heavy and tall.

Maresa had the GPS. “We’re almost to the exit… Two miles.”

Three minutes later they turned west on 36, from 121. The highways were nearly empty, with only a few random cars or small convoys traveling & the occasional abandoned vehicle. From 36 it was only a few miles to the causeway bridge over Lake Decatur and once past that, Maresa knew it was ten minutes to her doorstep.

Tom was retrieving extra magazines from under the bunk and stowing them in the different pouches of his vest. It was a black military looking thing he wore over his Kevlar vest. He had his MP5 slung high up and the sniper rifle laid on the bunk behind him. He put a handful of extra rounds in a pouch attached to the butt-stock & topped off the internal magazine.

Watching this, Maresa asked “So you’re really expecting a fight then?”

“If you don’t bring your umbrella it’s way more likely to rain… But you always hope it doesn’t rain.”

“If it rains, give me the AK, alright? I shot one when I was younger, dad always had one around.”

“Probably not a full-auto version though, right?” Tom asked, doubtfully.

Maresa smiled. “I always kept the selector pushed all the way down.”

Tom grinned & pointed under the bunk. “It’s wrapped up in the grey blanket, the mag’s full, the extra has ten, that’s it.”

“Better than a pointy stick!” Jordan said. “…You got a weapon I can use, big guy?”

“You can shoot a Glock, I assume?” Tom sighed.

“Does it have a trigger?”

“Yeah, but that's it, none of that other crap your used to on those old 1911’s!” Tom snickered.

“First you assumed I could hot-wire the truck, cause I’m black, now you assume I only trained on 1911’s cause I’m old! I have a Glock, just didn’t bring it… I thought about it, but figured I was being paranoid… It would never get bad enough for everyone to need weapons.” Jordan chucked.

They were ten miles out when Maresa called Alden again, wanting an update. He didn’t answer.



Thomas (Tom) McLaughlin-
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Jordan Parks-
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:18 pm

40.

“Grenades… get the crate.”

“I know I know, I’m on it.” Flowers said, incredulously.

“You gonna wear the Kevlar thing?” Tomaz asked, trying to decide himself.
Flowers laughed, hanging grenades on his attachment points. “Hell no, that thing is heavy and hot as shit… You gonna?”

“Probaby… well, maybe, I don’t like bullet holes in me.” Tomaz loaded his extra mags into a drop-leg triple. “And I’m certainly going to use the MTeK, cause I REALLY hate bullet holes in my face.”

Tomaz Valic donned the Kevlar helmet with it’s attached face shield. “Yeah, fuck it, if I’m going to wear this shit why not the whole suit.”

In another few minutes the pair were fully battle ready. Flowers, finishing slightly before Tomaz, rewound the last bit of camera recording to see if anything was going down. The secondary subject had exited the dwelling five minutes before, but only stayed outside a moment, then went back in.

“Nothing yet… Don’t hear the bird now, it either landed or hauled ass somewhere. You know, they could be here for some other reason… not for us.” Flowers said, hopefully.

“Yeah… I’m sure a loaded Blackhawk is here, right over OUR heads, coincidentally… test test…” Tomaz keyed the speaker/mic & Flowers gave him a thumbs up.

“You got me?” Flowers spoke quietly into his mic.

“Yeah… listen, whichever way they come, I will try to flank to their right, ok?”

“Got it.”

Tomaz exited the rear door. Going to the front gate of the back yard he peaked through the purpose-cut eyeholes in the fence. He noticed the faint whiney drone of the idling Blackhawk, it had to be within a quarter mile or it wouldn’t have been audible. He keyed the mic. “Hey Flowers, the chopper is parked nearby… to the north I think, probably the golf course or just beyond.”

“Makes sense, only place to land, if you want to be close to here.” His partner replied.

“You head out the front… or back, depending. You know, hard and fast… They will be armored so below the waist or head shots...”

Flowers cut him off. “I know, Taz, same shit different day, man!”

After crossing through a makeshift gate on the north side of the property’s fence, into the small wooded easement between the community wall and the homes, Tomaz slowly peaked over the wall. He had to stand on an old stump to see over the six-foot block wall, on the other side more trees obscured the view of the golf course except for a few small openings. He could hear the whirring rotor blades, but had not view through the trees.

Tomaz moved slowly down the wall, toward Kestrel Ave, eventually arriving at an unused gate at the dead-end of Kestrel. He peaked around the wall, and between the more open tree trunks. He quickly pulled back behind the cover of the wall. “I got a three man team approaching from the north. The chopper is parked about two hundred yards past the wall… the three are spread out, maybe eighty yards and closing on my position…”

“Where are you?” came the response from Flowers.

“Oh yeah, I’m at that unused north gate, right at the end of Kestrel.”

“Unless you wanna fight em’ on your own, get the fuck outa there!”

“I know, bugging back into the trees now… I’ll let them go past me, then hit them from behind… You hit them from our neighbors south-west corner, get there the back way.” Tomaz commanded.

“You got it.” Flowers answered. After a short pause he added “US military buddy… we’re steppin up, you know… I’ll see you in the middle.”

“In the middle.” Tomaz said with quiet conviction.

Flowers checked his loadout one last time then racked his modified Colt AR-15. Out the back door and through the fence he went. A minute later he was cutting the pie at the neighbors corner wall, as the gate came into view, a single figure silhouetted at the opening. ‘Fools’ he thought, his grandma used cover better than that… This would be a turkey shoot.

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Randal J Flowers-
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 7:07 pm

41.

An ambush, a protracted engagement, or a fight of any kind, was what they wanted to avoid. Secondarily, every extra pound of ammunition and gear, made the flight closer to needing an extra fuel stop and one stop was already going to be one too many.

The MH-60L was not exactly a comfy troop transport, not that any Blackhawk, in any configuration was. A hasty removal of some monitions banks had barely left room for three of the four person ground team in back, and one empty seat for the guest. Up front & running the show, the fourth member of the team, Devin McCloyd, sat in the co-pilot seat. Among his seemingly unending list of skills was aerial navigation, so he was the closest thing to a co-pilot they had.

Next to McCloyd, in the driver’s seat, Laramie Chisholm piloted the fuel laden craft. His sole responsibility was to take the team six hundred plus miles, in the most fuel efficient manner possible & leave enough juice to loiter a bit and then get to the Guard base near the target, to refuel. Getting back to Denver, from there, could be on autopilot.

Behind McCloyd, Tim Lazingo sat strapped into a specialized seat that swung out with the door gun, when the side door was not closed to cruise at best speed. 147 knots, with a slight tail wind most of the way, was supposed to get them there in four hours, by McCloyd’s calculations. It took exactly four hours and three minutes from lift off to hovering over the target, which was eyes-on confirmed, standing in the open, by Kathy Jeffscott.

She used her camera’s massive telephoto lens to zoom in and compare the man staring up at them to the enlarged drivers license photo they had been given. Kathy had been a recent transfer to Drucker’s command, moving out of army CID for personal reasons. Her combat experience was nil but the general insisted her investigation and cataloging skills would be invaluable. Her job was to check the house for any physical evidence and retrieve same, or photograph if removal was not an option.

Once the target was identified, Chisholm set the fat bird down in an open area to the north. McCloyd jumped out the front door before the rest of the ground team was even off their seats.

“Let’s go people, we have a house call to make!” McCloyd yelled over the whining motors and prop wash. His 5.7 was holstered at his side, an H&K was slung but also attached to his midsection by Velcro. He had the look of an operator who modified every piece of gear to his exact specs, or used alternative gear. Like his ‘uniform’ which, while it was a issue pattern, was certainly not issue material or design, hugging his angular frame like a child’s footie pajamas.

Trahern Shaw slid open the rear door. “Take it easy, captain… most of us have actual gear to hump.”

“Nobody made you bring all that stuff, Sergeant Tran.” McCloyd answered, scanning the tree line while talking.

“Yes, sir.” Shaw said, with a smirk.

They started calling him ‘Tran’ at some point in boot-camp. The Asian sounding name seemed odd, as he was red haired and freckle covered, but it was easier to remember and say than Trahern, so it stuck. His nickname prefix was earned later, after two combat tours.

‘Trigger Tran’ looked around & grinned at the captain. “So this is it? We’re raiding a golf course?”

“You were at the briefing, right?” McCloyd said, humorlessly. Still scanning the tree strewn fairway edge that concealed vine covered block wall.

He turned back to the chopper, watching as the third man of the first-in team climbed out of the machine. Freddy “Dutch” Johnston stepped softly to the ground, he was also known as “Tank Killer Freddy” to some, namely those who knew of his single handed destruction of an Iraqi tank. The story was, he hand delivering a modified mortar round into the open hatch.

“Let’s go.” McCloyd headed in the general direction of the wall, Shaw and Johnston flanked him at a distance.

Once they neared the tree line, they split up. Johnston turned left, following the tree line a hundred feet or so before cutting in to scale the wall east of the houses. Shaw went right, looking for a hole in the thick brush through which to access the wall.

McCloyd ducked under the low branches of a maple and immediately spied an abandoned access gate. Vines curled around it’s emplacements and across the bars. It had basically become part of the wall, held fast by vegetation and rust.

He moved quietly toward it, getting limited views of the culdesac through the partially blocked opening as he high stepped through the thorny bramble. Staying right of the gate kept the wall between McCloyd and the target, but he knew he might be silhouetted by the light coming through the gate. As he reached it, he quickly moved a few vines and scanned the area. Then just as quickly, pulled back and hopped behind the wall to the right. All he saw were standard row houses and standard suburban yards on a dead-end street, but something put his hackles up.

“Chisholm, can you give us some top cover?” McCloyd asked into a shoulder mounted mic-speaker.

“On it.” Was the only response, other than an instant jump in the base register from the bird’s rotors biting air, as their pitch adjusted for lift-off. A moment later the big metal dragonfly rose into the sky.

McCloyd’s ear-bud crackled and Freddy Johnston’s voice came on. “You see something, Cap?”

“Maybe… hair on the back of my neck standing up, mostly. He should be on station in a minute, that’ll give anyone below at least a moment’s pause… We go over the wall then, one minute from….. mark. You get that Shaw?”

“Got it, needed a minute anyway, damn thorns.” Came Shaw’s response.

The three men checked their watches and listened to the blackhawk rise above the neighborhood. McCloyd began the countdown in his head, stealthfully clearing an area atop the wall ease his climb. When his count hit fifty-nine, he lifted himself straight up and laid over the wall, assessing his landing spot for only an instant, before dropping to the other side.



Devin McCloyd
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Laramie Chisholm
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Tim Lazingo
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Kathy Jeffscott
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Trahern Shaw
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Freddy Johnston
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:39 pm

42.

Alden Wilkins was back on the attic stairs, the bane of his recent existence.
“Dad, what’s going on?... is that a helicopter out there?” Samantha asked, clearly scared.

Alden skipped over the broken stair with some effort, while answering. “Sam… I don’t know what’s going on, but get Roxanne and get in your room, lock the door, ok?”

He half expected an argument, but thought he had used a sufficiently serious tone to negate one and it worked. Samantha only paused a moment, then nodded and ran to find their dog.

A moment later, Alden was grabbing the rifle down from where he had hidden it before his tumble. Strange how knowledge negates apprehension, he thought. A few days earlier the weapon had been almost scary to him, like a snake that might strike at any moment. But finding information on it and learning how it worked, somehow turned it back into what it was supposed to be, just a tool.

He tore open the oily cardboard box containing a dozen tarnished brass cartridges. One key to identifying and learning about it was remembering the numbers on the box of ammo, he had looked that up online as he lay bed-ridden. The .30-06 cartridges meshed with another memory, this one far older. He remembered his father telling him the rifle was a German one, from the war… either captured or surplus, that he couldn’t remember but that it had been re-chambered to a caliber common in the US. With that, and remembering what the beast looked like, he was able to put together a generic history and learn it’s manual of arms.

Loading in the cartridges into the internal magazine, Alden inspected the action. It was as he figured, a Mauser, though it had a large square steel block attached in front of the bolt stop, he hadn’t seen in his research. It appeared to be part of what held the scope on, and it, along with the scope, made it difficult to load the weapon.

When he was finished, he left the action open, not wanting a round chambered yet, and more than anything hoping it would not need to be. Not having time to figure out the sling attachment points, he grabbed it near the middle and headed down stairs.

By the time he got back to the front door, the sound of the helicopter, which had subsided to a dull drone, was coming to life again. His sat. phone chirped at the same time, Maresa calling again, no doubt to inquire about the whole ‘mysterious scary helicopter’ thing.

“Hey...” He answered, distractedly.

Maresa was noticeably upset. “Al, what happened?... We’re going as fast as we can… almost there…”

“I’m looking out the front window, the helicopter is overhead now… I don’t see anything outside… Oh, there’s a guy, I think he has a… rifle, shit.”

“What?... Where? By our house?... What is he…”

“Just a second, Mare… He’s just standing there, kinda aiming his gun somewhere down the street.”

After a slight pause, she replied. “What the fuck?...”
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:06 pm

43.

Randal Flowers looked through the 1X optic atop his AR, trying to see movement in the sparsely treed area between the north wall and the Wilkins’ house. He didn’t miss the movement in the window, probably the tall skinny guy, Alden, nosing around to see what was going on, but he ignored it. Flowers was fairly certain the homeowner would not interfere, he just wasn’t the type. They had studied, followed and noted his every movement for months and once the military fools were dealt with, the next phase of their mission would begin…

His earpiece chirped. “Flowers, what do you have?”

“One guy, at that old gate in the trees… but he moved left, outside the wall, probably gonna climb over I figure.” Flowers answered in a hushed tone.

“You said three, where are the others?” Tomaz demanded.

“Musta’ split up, my guess they come over the wall in different places, so watch your ass.”

“Got it… if you can, hold off on taking down the first one, till I have one to pop, ok?”

Flowers laughed “He he, no problem, Taz… If you hear shots, it means I couldn’t wait.” Then he saw something move, just at the edge of the view past the Wilkins’ house.

Back through the trees and brush, at the wall, it had to be him. He sighted in with both eyes open, holding the weapon left handed to reduce his visual signature. He had resisted shooting lefty at first, but after a couple of years it had become second nature to switch hands when shooting from that side of cover.

Motion again, a quick move from a thick tree to the cover of the house. The team he faced was not as amateurish as he first suspected. Flowers didn’t want to tell Taz he had lost a guy already, but knew he must.
Before he could speak, his earpiece chimed.

“You see that guy?” Taz asked, angrily.

“Yeah, I didn’t have a shot… You saw him?”

“Yup, but too much shit between us… And what the fuck, that damn bird is back up.” Taz said. Flowers heard it too, the chopper was off the ground and heading up and over them. Taz continued “If I move left I might have a sho… SHIT!”

Gunshots rang out, at least a dozen, Flowers heard them through his com before the echoes reached him through the air. He wanted to move, head toward it, but wasn’t sure if Taz had fired or had been fired on.

“Taz, you hear me?... What happened?!” No answer. Then three more shots in quick succession. Flowers backed up, moving along the house’s south wall, aiming his weapon forward but looking back over his shoulder, as much as where he was going.

“Taz, I’m on my way to you!”
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:27 pm

44.

Freddy Johnston lay motionless on the ground, hanging half in and half out of a bush, as McCloyd approached.

“Dutch! Are you dead or what?” Devin whispered harshly, his pistol up and aiming at the last place he saw the assailant disappearing behind a fence. A moment before, whoever it was, had been leaning over Johnston’s body, aiming at his head with an M4. Only McCloyd’s shots from a distance, prevented the coup de grace. He drug the groaning man the rest of the way to the ground, as gently as he could.

“You see that fucking guy?...” Freddy moaned. “God Damn all armored up like the fuckin’ master chief.” He coughed a few times, then sat up partially on one elbow.

“Shhhhh! And lay back down… gotta check you.” McCloyd whispered. Johnston complied, but kept talking quietly.

“I had that fucker dead bang, stitched his back… but he spun so fucking fast…” He coughed, interrupting himself.

McCloyd finished inspecting the damage. “…Hole through your right arm, just meat there… but the upper chest here… it came through your vest, but it’s not bleeding much. May be shallow and nothing… or deep and bleeding inside, that lung may go down…”

Johnston cut him off. “You know which one I vote for.”
McCloyd keyed his mic. “Shaw, I got at least one BG, heading south or south-east from me & Johnston… Freddy’s down, at least one round through the vest but looks serviceable. Get where you can cover us a bit and still watch the house with the Wilkins guy.”

Trahern’s reply was choppy, obviously made while running. “I’m going south, behind the houses… *huff huff* Should come out… yeah, I’m at the second house from the wall, outside corner… the one next to our target. No movement, but I can see the whole block from here… If your BG keeps going south, I should see him between the houses.”

“Chisholm… Lazingo, you catch all that? You see movers, it’s not us, we are all stationary… If it’s moving and armed, make it die please!”

“We gotta move east a bit, to see through some trees but… I see him!” Lazingo answered, from the circling blackhawk. Then a sound like reving motor cycle without a muffler ripped through the air, followed by empty brass bouncing off roof-tops& drive-ways, as the chopper’s mini-gun roared to life.

After the short burst, Lazingo called back. “I had one, moving north, a block east of you, but I lost him in the trees… Mighta’ hit him, but not sure… Permission to spray around in that area, sir?”

“No, no… hold off on that, lots of locals I think. You catch one in the open though…” McCloyd let the rest go without saying, obviously concerned with the new information.

He whispered to Johnston. “Sounds like that prick is heading back our way… I want to get you over the wall, but if he’s…”

A low thud and odd gritty rolling sound from above & right, put a quick stop to the conversation.
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:36 am

45.

Alden had moved to the large living room window, since it was the northern most in the house, trying to see where the gun shots came from. 911 service was still a busy signal, but he kept trying. The fifth attempt was interrupted by an incoming call and not Maresa this time.

“Yeah?” Alden answered, tersely.

He instantly recognized the voice of Lester’s buddy, Jedediah Lieus. “You shootin’ up the place over there, dude? A little trigger happy??”

“No, not me… I don’t know what the fuck is going on. First that helicopter buzzing around, then some special forces looking guy appears across the street, then disappears… then all hell breaks loose over by the wall…”

“I’ll grab Les and head over that way…”

“NO! Shit no, Jed, stay inside…” Alden implored. “Stay safe, lock your doors, man…”

A thudding explosion shook Alden’s house.

…..

Tomaz hadn’t gone far after the sharp-shooter in camo pajamas put a hole in his helmet. He could hear them whispering from where he stopped, posted up behind the corner of the fence. He had never been shot in the head before, it sucked. The round hit the top of his helmet as he leaned over to finish the quiet guy, it went through but bounced off his hard head. The little penetrator had fallen out on the ground when he reached under to feel the wound. He started to laugh, then realized it had trashed the helmet’s built in mic & electronics. The radio he could do without but the sound catcher was the only thing keeping him from being deaf while wearing it, so it leaned it against the fence.

Out of contact with his partner, he would let flowers know where he was and take care of trick-shot and quiet guy in one stroke. What did the Americans say? Two birds with one stone… The stone was an HG85 grenade. Tomaz had intended for it to just clear the roof of the house & drop near the wall, thinking trick-shot may have advanced that far, stalking him but it landed on the down slope of the roof and rolled off, all the same really. If they were still where the quiet one went down, they would get a good helping of shrap, if one or both had moved closer, all the better.

The blast was ear shattering, even while Valic pressed his inward on his antitragi, to protect his hearing. A few pieces made it through the fence, flying by Tomaz close enough to hear them buzz by. He waited a minute to listen for cries or screams but only heard the rattle of a machine gun, then his left leg jumped out from under him and he was on his ass.

…..

McCloyd had scooted Johnston over behind a large oak, in relation to the edge of the fence, thinking that was the greatest avenue of threat. This was fortuitous, as the grenade landed just on the other side, blasting bark and debris all over the pair. McCloyd’s right foot was out past the tree and was now numb, he assumed it hit by shrapnel but didn’t take the time to check before ripping across the fence with a full magazine of armor piercing 4.6mm rounds, still using the tree as cover. He had used the angle of the thrown grenade and other factors to quickly calculate the grenadier’s position to be near the end of the fence but thought he may have miscalculated when a volley of M4 rounds came from farther left, almost over by the wall. While the spray-and-pray nature belayed the attacker’s ignorance of their exact position, the realization that it might be two attackers, working in tandem, was more than daunting.

“This is getting stupid down here, Chisholm… I have one threat, maybe two that need to disappear… Kill the red smoke, copy?” McCloyd growled into his com, while hurling a red M18 in the general direction of his attackers.

The smoke took a few seconds to percolate up through the trees, meanwhile McCloyd quietly dragged Freddy Johnston away from the enemy and the impending death zone the area would soon become. Above, the chopper could be heard adjusting it’s position to allow both guns to align on target. The whine of the mini-gun’s electric motor preceded it’s roar only by an instant, then branches cracked, splinters flew and hell rained down. When the 20mm started pounding, a white dust cloud mixed with the red smoke, being disintegrated bits of the block wall.
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:04 am

46.

Jordan almost hit the gate trying to stop, he assumed it would swing open automatically for some reason.

“Fucking gate? Really?...” Maresa began, she was cut off by the helicopter’s heavy machine guns.

“Holy shit!” Jordan said, involuntarily ducking inside the cab of the huge truck.

The guns roared for what seemed like minutes, but it was only a few seconds. Maresa jumped out of the truck and headed for the gate, Tom followed as quick as he could.

“Just… Just stay here, Parks, Ok?” He said, looking back & almost tripping on a curb. Tom caught up to Maresa as she yanked on the gate, yelling for it to open.

“God damnit, someone open the fucking gate!!” She screamed, but the gate house was empty, and nobody in the nearby houses even peeked through a window much less came out to help.

“Mare!... that fucking chopper is blowing shit up… maybe anything that moves, we can’t just go running…”

She pulled away roughly from his attempt at a calming grasp. “NO Tom, no! I’m not waiting… or hiding or anything else… I’m going in to be with my family, that’s it!”

She continued pulling on the gate to no avail, as it was chain locked to a deeply set iron pole on the far side. Maresa eyed the wall, obviously seeing if she could climb it.

“Give me a boost, Tom!” She demanded, fully crying.

“Shit… just get in the truck, we’ll push the gate open.”

As they climbed in and Jordan started the beast back up, the helicopter was descending into the neighborhood, causing the rising cloud of smoke to swirl around it’s rotor wash.

….

Alden grabbed Samantha and was headed for the back door before the helicopter’s guns went quiet. His plan, thought up only seconds before as machinegun fire broke out, was to head to Lester’s house on the other side of the neighborhood.

“Wait!... my laptop!” Samantha cried, grabbing her computer, she tried to get the power cord but Alden had her around the waist.

“We are going!”

“What about mom? She…”

Alden cut her off. “I know! I have the phone… but we GOTTA go!”

“Roxanne…”

“…Gotta go!” Alden hefted her out the back door, ignoring the leg and back pain. He left his father’s rifle leaned against the front door, thinking it might fall over as someone tried to gain access & startle them, giving him a extra moment to escape. The weapon just didn’t seem worth bringing when compared to the firepower being displayed out front.

“Gonna put you down, keep up, ok? Run… got it?” Alden huffed.

Samantha nodded. They ran along the back of their house but had to angle toward the front to exit their side gate. As soon as they were out, Alden led them behind their neighbor’s house to the south & through their unfenced back yard.

“Where are we going?” Samantha whispered, demandingly.

“Lester’s house… or Jed’s… somewhere other than here, now shhhh!”

At the last house Alden paused, looking around the back corner before running to the street and across. The helicopter was slowly lowering and moving east, away from them. Hunting for something, he thought, too busy to notice a quick sprint across the road, he hoped. From behind he heard a slight movement, turning he saw a large freckled ginger, in military garb with a rifle aimed at them.

The man’s voice was calm. “Please don’t move, ok?”

….

Trahern Shaw had been scanning the area across the street when he heard something that made him turn. If it had been a BG, he would have been smoked, damn chopper noise. But it was a man and a girl, no obvious weapons, running across the opening between the houses. He radioed McCloyd to let him know as he moved toward the back. The pair would have seen him if they had been looking but were clearly intent on escape and not recon. They were waiting at the last house when he peeked around the corner, backs to him. He moved out wide, to deny them any attempt to escape around the corner. As soon as the man turned, Trahern did his best not to startle them, but nicely tell them not to fucking move.

Shaw keyed his mic again. “I have our subject here, sir… I’m two houses south of our target… The daughter is with him.”


The man pulled his daughter close, both of their eyes were big as saucers.

“Just keep your hands where I can see them, ok? Everything’s going to be fine.” Shaw tried his best to calm them, in hopes of keeping them from doing something stupid.

“Who are you?... What do you want with us?” The man asked, Shaw tried to remember his name from the briefing.

“Mr… Wilson? Wilkins, it’s Wilkins, right?... We just need to go over a few things with you, that’s all” Shaw realized, even as he said the words, they probably sounded silly, especially given the gun battle. He could see the wheels turning in the guy’s head. His radio chirped.

“Put the bird down in the street and extract the subject, his body guards can sit and spin for all I care… let’s get out of here.” McCloyd directed.

A moment later the big machine was touching down in the intersection of Goshawk Lane & Kestrel Ave. Devin McCloyd materialized out of nowhere with an unconscious Freddy Johnston draped over his shoulder.

“Get him cuffed and in the plane, please.” McCloyd said, huffing angrily.

“Wait… what? Where are you taking us?”

McCloyd didn’t stop loading Johnston into the helicopter, but did answer. “Not ‘us’ sir, just you… but somebody grab that computer.”

“No! It’s mine!” Samantha protested.

Behind them, Kathy Jeffscott hopped out of the idling blackhawk & approached. “Sir! Can I recon that house? Check for evidence?”

“Nope, not with armed jackasses running around.” McCloyd snapped. “But you can get that computer right there.”

Kathy knelt down in front of Sam. “Sorry honey, we need that laptop, you will get it back after we have a look, ok?”

She backed away. “It’s mine… not’s my dad’s… he barely knows how to use it!”

A light bulb clicked on over McCloyd’s head. The girl may be involved, maybe handled the tech side…

“Just grab her, computer and all.” He whispered in Kathy’s ear.

Aden, already handcuffed with thick plastic ties, was being hoisted into the plane as Kathy grabbed Samantha. He had not struggled till then, thinking it better for his daughter, knowing Maresa was almost there… whatever happened to him, Sam would be ok. But now they were taking Sam as well, he swung his bound hands wildly at the man holding him, but Shaw easily dodged it and continued shoving him into the helicopter.

“Wait! Her mother is right around the corner… She can stay!... Sam, give them that damn computer!”



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maldon007
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:36 am

47.

The gate was stronger than it looked, most of the type were made of light aluminum tubing, only made to look like heavy steel. But the old rusty thing hardly gave as Jordan Parks gassed the heavy truck’s bumper against it.

“Fuck it, ram the bitch.” Tom said.

Parks smirked “Hollywood style?”

“Maybe not quite, ten miles an hour should do it… I think.”

Ten miles an hour did do it, the pole on the left yanked up out of the ground and the fence swung inward against the hinges, bending it in a few places. The concrete base of the unearthed pole dragged across the asphalt, dropping clods of dirt, leaving a white arcing scar.

“Go down three streets, that’s where…” Maresa went quiet as the rounded a bend, the military helicopter was at the intersection to her street, and rising into the air.

“Slow down!” Tom demanded. “…Those fuckin’ guys are clearly trigger happy, no reason to come rushing up there when they are already leaving, right?”

Parks eased off the gas as the helo ascended. Maresa sat in the back seat, bouncing her knee nervously. Another minute and they made the turn onto Kestrel. The chopper, now high above them, headed east.

…..

Pain was something Tomaz didn’t think much about anymore, as rarely as it was presented, but bullets fucking hurt. The suit helped certainly, acting together with his toughened hide to keep the normally lethal rounds outside of his body (mostly) but damn, the pain! His left leg was really all he was worried about long term, it was bleeding pretty good though the pain there was only a tingly burn. Chest and right upper leg were the ones that hurt, from that fucking chopper’s mini gun, lucky the twenty didn’t hit him. He dragged himself to his feet using part of the shattered fence as a crutch. He couldn’t see the helicopter but could hear it, and from the speed of it’s egress, he knew it wasn’t coming back. Moving as quietly and quickly as he could toward Flowers last known location, he searched the underbrush through the dust and smoke.

“Flowers!” He hissed, stepping over fallen branches and vines.

The block wall surrounding the community had a gaping hole in it, large enough to drive a truck through if not for the nearby trees, though some of them were more stumps than trees. Randal J. Flowers lay under some of the block rubble & branches, unmoving.

Valic pulled a triple section of block off Flowers’ torso, revealing the bloody mess beneath. The twenty millimeter had hit his left side, shredding his vest and clearly doing heavy damage. The ground beneath was blood soaked. Flowers opened his eyes slowly.

“Hey, Buddy… that *cough* fuckin’ bird, huh? We had those fuckers if not for… *continued coughing*.”

“Yeah, I’ll go finish them now, yes?” Tomaz said, attempting to comfort him.

“Don’t forget….. blow the *coughing up blood* …base.”

“Yes, yes of course… you rest.” Valic put his hand on Flowers’ head.

Flowers only nodded in slow motion, closing his eyes. What color he had left, drained away and he breathed out heavily, one last time.

Valic dusted himself off and headed off to prep the charges.

…..

The heavy truck stopped with one tire up on Maresa’s front lawn and the trio piled out of it. Tom circled around the front, MP5 shouldered and sweeping in tandem with his eyes. Maresa went straight for the front door.

“Wait!” Tom implored, but she was already putting in the code on the electric deadbolt. A rifle fell out onto the porch as the door swung open.

“Alden!... Sam!!” Maresa yelled into the house. Roxanne came bounding out, the reddish brown chow mix, clearly excited to see her. It followed her as she ran into the house, calling out for her missing family.

Jordan Parks sat heavily on the bumper of the Chinese dump truck, sighing. Glancing left he realized a large bald man had materialized thirty feet away, from thin air, aiming a huge shotgun at him & moving slowly forward.

“Who the fuck are you?” the man demanded.

Parks quickly raised his empty hands and stammered. “Jordon A Parks, US Army, retired.”

“Lower that fucking gun, pal.” Tom growled from the other side of the truck, aiming his weapon over the hood at the new threat.

“You lower your gun, pal.” Came the response, from the back of the truck where Jedediah Lieus stood, using the truck’s bed as cover and aiming an AKM at Tom’s flank.

“All of you better drop them guns, cause this bitch is FULL AUTO!” Jimmy Hess exclaimed. Alden’s neighbor to the rear had come around the wall side of the house, and was aiming a ranch rifle in their general direction, from the hip. In the area of the trigger, the young man had his right hand on an odd manual pencil sharpener-like crank lever.

“What the hell is going on?!!” Maresa yelled from the doorstep, having come back out after finding no one inside.

The crack of rifle pulled everyone’s attention toward Tomaz Valic, posted on the corner of the house across the street, shooting at them. The kid with the A-Team rifle spun and began winding the windlass-like device attached to his trigger and sweeping the weapon back and forth, spraying bullets in the general vicinity of Valic. Then his head snapped back and he dropped like a stone.

In one motion, Tom flipped his selector switch to fun-mode and rolled around the front of the truck behind cover, while spraying Valic’s position with half a magazine of 9mm.

“Who the fuck is that?” Tom demanded of Lester Hynemin, as they pointed weapons at each other.

“I have no clue!... I’m Al’s friend, is he ok?” Lester lowered his weapon, realizing the big stranger had to be one of the two men in Maresa’s company, since they appeared be known to her & given the fact that she was there at all.

“We just got…” Tom’s sentence was cut short by the front tire of the truck blowing out, hit by a round from the lunatic in digi-camo.

Jedediah’s weapon rattled off a three round burst, from his position behind the back wheel of the truck. “I know that hit him, what the shit?” He fired again.

Tom popped up over the hood, taking an aimed shot at the creep’s head, assuming his bulky clothing must be some kind of level 3 material. He dropped back down immediately, taking only a snap shot but was certain the round impacted on the upper head. When he peeked around the left to double check the kill, more rounds came in, rattling the bumper.

“Holy shit… he’s a greenie… or something, what the fuck?!”

Lester’s eyes grew three sizes. “Bullshit… really? I thought they were… stupid.”

Tom shook his head. “Fuck if I know, every one I’ve seen was… But I just hit him in the head, and there’s a red spot but he’s still up.”

“He’s gone!... backed up or something.” Jordan parks had climbed back in the cab of the truck to look for a weapon and was peeking through the window.

Tom looked again, confirming the attacker had indeed backed off or moved. “Everybody into the house!”

The ragtag bunch ran and stumbled into Maresa’s house, finding her just inside the door, clinging tightly to the .30-06 Mauser.



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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by DTyra » Fri Jun 28, 2013 2:00 pm

Excellent!
You weren't born with a silver spoon in your mouth; you were born with a shovel up your ass, so pull it out and start digging!
Short stories about the subsidiary characters of "Behind a Veil of Darkness" http://zombiefictionandothertales.blogspot.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by Murphman » Fri Jun 28, 2013 3:37 pm

tagged. Thanks for a great story.
"If you are prepped for pandemic flu, you are more than prepped for Ebola. And pandemic flu is hella more likely, that's the one that scares me, personally." - Duodecima...and she's a freaking doctor. What are you?

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maldon007
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Re: Green Eyed Monster

Post by maldon007 » Fri Jun 28, 2013 9:38 pm

Thank you!




48.

Tomaz Valic backed up from the corner just enough to check his head wound, 9mm. hollow points were like getting hit with paintballs when you have cellular armor, maybe a little worse, but he was only bleeding a little. He dabbed it with his sleeve to make sure, yes only a minor wound, the leg was really starting to sting though. When he popped back around the corner he caught a glimpse of someone leaping through the door of the Wilkins’ house & the rest of them seemed to be gone, probably all inside.

He could have raked the ground floor with a couple of magazines, probably hit at least a few of them… But he had grenades, so get a little closer and have some real fun. Where all these fuckers came from he wasn’t quite sure, but he was sure they all seemed have a part in fucking his plans all the way up. His partner, dead, or close enough… His subject grabbed up by the government for some unknown reason and now a bunch of armed half-assed militia types were holed up in HIS target house.

He made his way along the wall, keeping one eye on the front of the house. At the gate, he zipped across the opening to not be silhouetted for more than a second. He could easily pitch a little gift in through a side window from there, but wanted a better angle. One where he could hit multiple windows in succession, just blow the shit out of the place.

In another minute he was at the corner of their fence, the dilemma there was, try to quietly open a gate, that he knew to be creaky and loud from previous recon. Or go all the way around behind the dead Hess man’s yard and maybe climb over the back fence…

Just then, the dead Hess man’s dog came bounding through the brush, probably following Hess’s trail. The large shepherd looked quite pissed off, as though he knew Valic had killed his master. He ran at the animal to quiet it, having no fear of injury by dog bite. If the thing started barking, that would be… And it did, it barked like shepherds do, loud and angry. He reached for the animal, a quick twist of the neck would shut it up, but it backed away quick, still barking. Then the other one joined in, right next to him but through the Wilkins’ fence. That little brown shit dog could really bark. He snapped a quick glance over the fence just in time to see a second floor window shatter and feel a rifle round buzz by, inches from his ear.

It was second nature to be deceptive, in almost all things, for Valic. Even in evading direct fire, he played the game, ducking forward as though he would continue away from the house, along the fence. But the instant his head was out of sight, he reversed and headed back toward the house. Rounds ripped through the fence where the shooter thought he should be, sending the shepherd sprinting away, tail between his legs. The perfect angle would have to wait, for now circle the house clockwise, throw grenades through every window till none are left, go in & finish them, as he promised. At the end of the fence, he took a deep breath.

…..

“Everybody find a window, find that fucker… Maresa, call the cops, then stay low… Keep the lights off!” Tom tossed the Mouser to Jordan Parks. “Up stairs Parks, find a window, watch the back yard, head shots… neck… kill that fucker.”

“I’m gonna go out back, black and yellow hat folks, don’t shoot it!” Jedediah pointed to his Steelers cap & headed toward the back door. Tom stared quizzically and shrugged.

Maresa finally got through to a living person at the sheriff’s office, she tried to quickly explain what she herself, hardly understood.

“…and when we got here Alden, my husband, and my daughter were gone… Then this guy starts shooting…”

The woman interrupted her. “Yes ma’am, we are aware the military is doing an operation in your area, we have been ordered to not interfere… If you have any questions you have to contact the department of defense. Sorry we can’t help you ma’am.”

Wait, the military is gone, it’s a greenie… hello?” But the line was dead. A loud gunshot from upstairs nearly made her scream but instead she got low, as instructed. A dog started barking somewhere outside.

…..

Jedediah barely opened the back door to slip out, then crouched low and listened. Above, rifle rounds zinged out from the second story, hitting the far fence. The Wilkins’ dog was at the fence, but had given up barking at the army guy though and was now cowering in the far corner of the yard, as far from the rifle’s report as she could be. The deafening reports had his ears ringing so hearing a telltale leaf crunch was out of the question, but a slight change in the light breaking through the fence slats showed him where the guy was. The sneaky fucker changed directions, heading back toward the house. Jedediah moved closer, duck walking as smoothly as he could, till the muzzle of his rifle was only a foot from the fence. He tried to match the asshole’s movement.

Inside, Tom watched through the kitchen window as Jedediah stalked along the fence. Then he saw him, the crazy camo guy, pausing at the end of the fence & pulling out… yes, two grenades from his vest. Above, he heard Parks moving through the house to the side of the upper floor and knew he must be on the same page. Tom raised the MP5 and rested it awkwardly on the windowsill. Aiming carefully at the man’s right eye and began to squeeze.

…..

Tomaz held the two little bombs in his right hand, he quickly ran through the plan in his head. Pull pins, roll right to the first window… As he looked at the window, a slight movement caught his eye, then a bright flash filled the dark square. The flash somehow echoed in his head, then everything went all wiggly.

More booms followed, wood splinters flew past his good eye and his right side went numb. A grenade fell from his half useless hand as he stumbled to the left. He reached for the M4 with the other hand, but it was slung backwards for left-handed use. Valic fell to one knee at the edge of the grass, he felt more impacts. He reached for the pin on his remaining grenade & pulled it free. Above him a massive flash filled an upper floor window, the image of the flash froze in his mind like a movie stopping on a certain frame, that and a falling sensation were the last things he was ever aware of.
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