Jacob and Michael – My legs – part 3

Michael screamed. Thin boney fingers dug into his left arm.  Jacob prepared to swing the bat but stopped, afraid to strike Michael.  The zombie dug it’s long, sharp nails further into Micheal’s arm.  Michael twisted.  He grasp the bone-like hand with his right hand and pulled.  Pain radiated up his arm and into his shoulder.    The nails tore large cuts into his forearm as the  muscles in zombie’s hand stretched.  The second zombie pushed forward and reached toward Michael.  Jacob swung.  He struck the zombie and the zombie collapsed.

“Jacob, she has my legs,” Michael shouted as he looked down.  Barbara, her face unrecognizable had a hold of his right leg.

“Get her off my leg!!”

”She’s not on your leg. She is dead,” Jacob shot back.  Barbara lay in a pool of a thick, dark goo.   “She’s not moving.”

Michael pulled the thin fingers from his forearm.  He retrieved the bat from the floor and pressed the larger end against the zombie’s chest.  He pushed the zombie backward and jerked his ankle from Barbara’s perceived grasp.  Jacob grabbed Barbara’s blood soaked dress and pulled her away.

“Michael, your losing it,” Jacob stated. “Seriously thought I would be having the problems in this house.”

The two remaining zombies stepped forward.  The couch slid upon the floor.  Michael and Jacob stepped back toward a bedroom.  More zombies filed in through the back door.

“Michael calm down,” Jacob said. “It’s fine.”

”It’s not fine!  This is NOT fine!”

“Take a breath… Barbara is dead. We have to figure out how to get out of this.”

“I felt her grab my ankles!  We have to get out of this house,” Michael said while scanning the front room.

Four additional zombies had entered the house  behind the two the were still roaming behind the leather divider that was a couch.  The front door was on the other side of the room and the kitchen was a no go area.  Behind the two men was the main bedroom.  A large queen-sized bed sat in the center of the room.  A window in the front wall and a closet against the wall right in front of them.

”Maybe, we should hide in the closet.”  Michael smiled.

“Dude, not that.  Not now.  Let’s block this doorway,” Jacob replied.

Both men lifted the large queen mattress from the bed and stuffed it into the doorway.

“Why did you not add a door to your bedroom,” Michael asked.

“We have no kids.  We don’t need it.”  Jacob replied.

“Until I showed up and saw you two doing the nasty.”  Michael laughed.  His forearm painted in blood.  The men flipped up the frame and pushed it against the doorway.  Jacob grabbed a towel from the closet in the right rear of the room and attempted to hand it to Michael.

Michael stood with his back against the mattress and frame.  Behind the bedding blockade were three zombies attempting to climb the flimsy wall of fabric and wood.

Jacob tossed the towel at Michael and stood beside him.

“Wrap that up the best you can.  When we get out of here I will make you a proper dressing,” Jacob instructed.

“Ah, my brother the medic.  It’s been ten years since you left the Army.  You think you can still do a proper dressing?”  Michael asked.

“Better than you.”

From above Michael’s head a thin, rotten hand reached up and over the wall.  It ran its black goo covered hand over the side of Michael’s face.  Michael stepped forward, turned and growled.  “I am so tired of you monsters touching me!  Stop touching me!”

The wall built from bedding began to fall forward.  The zombies that managed to climb the mattress tumbled into the room.  Jacob stood with his back to the bed frame.  He glared at Michael.  Michael attempted to readjust the wall but the damage was done and a pair of zombie began to claw their way into the room from the floor.

“There are two more out there!”  Jacob screamed.

“It will not matter, if these two take us out,” Michael replied while wrestling with the bed frame to keep the other pair out.  He watched the room as one of the two zombies cleared his head and stared forward.  A simple sniff of the air alerted the zombie to the men’s presence and it started to move forward.  The other zombie followed soon after.

Michael found the bat and held it, larger end farthest away.  The zombie stepped forward.  Stopped after meeting the resistance created by the bat then continued forward.  The thin skin of the monster tore and gore began to cover the bat.  The other zombie moved around to the left of the first one.  The other zombies attempted to push through the mattress wall.

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City of Monsters – Jacob and Michael – The Wives – part 2

“Just push through it Michael.  You can do this,” Jacob said as he sat upon a chair on top of Barbara.

Michael paced the floor. Mixing words of disbelief with cursing. Banging on the back door began to spread around the house as zombie brethren began to beat their way into the house..

“You need to do it, Michael… now!” Jacob shouted.

Michael walked around and stood at a window.  He stared at the destruction of the once bright city.

“All these people…,” he said to no one.  “They just stand in the failing daylight staring at a charcoal drawing that was once a city.”

“Could you ever imagine something like this happening?”  He says too Jacob.  “A catastrophic infection spreading from the center of the country. Trapping a whole city within its walled boundaries?”

“I don’t know what to tell you Michael!” Jacob replied, his voice shaking.

Barbara managed to grab the small man’s right leg. Jacob reached down and shoved her hand free but it returned and strangled his bare ankle.

“If she draws blood you will be without a wife and a friend.” Jacob struggled to stay a top Barbara.  He manipulated the chair and dug a corner leg into the infected woman’s left shoulder.  The weight of the chair melted quickly through the rotting muscle.  Jacob moved his legs to the left.

Barbara pushed upward on the chair with her free right hand. Jacob set his feet on her left side and pushed back.

“Michael please…”

The back door opened with a crash. The large zombie stood in the kitchen and roared.  Michael swung the bat.  It struck the floor with a loud metallic boom and Jacob leapt from his chair.  Michael swung again striking Barbara and collapsing her chest.   The large zombie moved forward, followed by others.  Barbara attempted to breath, her infected lungs compressed. Rotten air retched from her mouth. Her broken face stared forward, human feelings of sorrow and pain vacant from her grey face.

Jacob ran forward and pushed a large leather couch into the smaller doorway to the kitchen.  Michael stared downward at what used to be his wife.  The body of his wife, her face, attempted to take in a breath but it wouldn’t come.  She stared at the ceiling.  Michael began to cry.  The pain in her face wasn’t there.  Michael knelt next to his wife, her breath slowing.

“Barbara,” he whispered and watched.  He reached forward.

Barbara turned, her eyes flashed.  She snapped at Michael’s hand.  Michael fell backward.  He grabbed the bat and swung three times.  Barbara took a final breath and finally left the world of the living.

“Help me, Michael,” Jacob pleaded.

Michael shot up from the floor,  swung and connected with the bat.  The zombie stumbled to the side and knocked over a second.  It then straighten up and charged forward.

“Hold the couch,” Jacob ordered.

The large zombie stepped forward and charged.  He struck the couch and fell forward.  The couch moved forward but the two men held the other zombies behind it.  Jacob grabbed another bat, and Michael his, and both men beat the zombie to death.

“Yea! buddy,” Jacob screamed.  He continued, his voice escalating with every sentence, “Its like we’re in a movie.  Remember those… fun little contraptions we could do before we had monsters attacking us every moment of the day.  We were so lazy back then.  Relaxing, watching stuff… doing nothing. Oh, and not killing our wives.  Michael we had wives that hated us.”

“They didn’t hate us,” Micheal said.  “They loved us.”  He looked back at what remained of Barbara and was suddenly jerked forward.

You shot me?

The .45 went off. The sound stuck to the walls and shook the building. Jean Claude spun, fell and disappeared.

“You have gone to far,” Sean shouted and attempted to advance.

“Don’t move!”

“What? Are you going to shoot me too?”

“I don’t know, did you hit me. Did you do this!” Erik pointed at his head wound with the weapon.

“Shoot yourself.”

Erik stepped from the counter and toward the two remaining men. The .45 pointed in their direction.

“You’re going to listen to me. Pack your crap and leave.”

“Ok, fine!” Andrew and Sean said in unison.

“Move!” Erik shouted when both men stood motionless.

Both men began to collect what they could, taking time to pick up as many items as they could.

Andrew stood first pointing a pistol then Sean.

“What now!” Sean shouted.

“I can still fire,” Erik replied then stepped forward.

“Back away you suicidal bastard,” Andrew countered and stepped foward.

“Do you know how many we’ve killed? I can put you down easily.”

“And why am I still walking!” Erik took another step.

“I don’t want to kill your dumb ass. Stop moving.”

“Shoot me! Do it!” Erik shouted then repeated it.

Erik positioned the weapon forward. He growled as he began to measure the likelyhood of hitting one of the men.

“The other would likely kill me moments later,” he thought. “I can make this happen.”

He stepped forward and tuned out the shouting. He dropped any hope of life after this encounter. He placed his finger on the trigger when the door in the back of the store exploded open.

Handy work

Erik sat in a lawn chair he found in the tiny camping section. He could not help but stare at the pale remains of partially severed hands and arms tacked to the plywood windows.

“Imagine, if they were human arms and not the infected. It would be cruel and unusual punishment,” he said.

“They are not human,” Jean Claude replied as he sat beside him in a simular looking chair.

“It was supposed to be a cure for Cancer. It was a mutating cell inhibitor. It was not supposed to create new cells. A new nervous system. It moved so fast. It was spectacular until it took my wife…”

A painful thump and Erik’s world went dark.

Minutes later he woke bloody and leaning against the remains of a shelf full of dusty baseball cards.

Jean Claude and the Baker brothers argued near the end of the checkout lane. Erik stood. Took a breath and then walked left toward a dirty counter that used to be the Service Center. Blood fell from the wound on the right side of Erik’s face.

Erik stepped behind the counter. He searched for the .45 he knew was behind the counter. The dusty handgun sat near a stack of boxes. Erik reached for the weapon as his head throbbed.

“This thing is huge,” he thought as he slid the weapon from the shelf.

“Where did Erik, the Horrible go?”

Andrew said.

“I’m not Erik, the Horrible or Erik, the Terrible… I am not an animal,” Erik stood and squeezed the trigger.

Born in Cleveland

Erik shook himself awake after the shove and slowly sat up. He looked around and quickly noticed the large glass window at the front of the store had been boarded up.

“What did you do?” Erik spat. “You are taking away all the light.”

“Old man,” Sean began. “I don’t know how you made it this long. This building has a huge glass window and the back door was wide open. The zombies could of walked right in.”

Erik ignored him and stared at the three new survivors. The Baker brothers were dark skinned and muscular. They stood a foot shorter then Erik at 6’2. The third man was 7 foot tall. His skin was black as coal with a yellow, toothy smile.

“Haitian? Why are you so far North?” Erik asked.

“I was an American, born in Cleveland.” Jean Claude responded. “Before the country broke apart.”

“Yeah, that was crazy…” Erik said then quickly added. “So how many did they add this time?”

“Fifty prisoners this time. It wasn’t a pleasant trip here so we would appreciate you drop the crazy loner act and help finish securing this building. There may be more survivors,” Andrew added.

Erik swallowed hard. He didn’t respond.

“I have a bottle of warm Vodka and a couple other bottles behind the service counter, if you want a drink,” Erik offered.

After several drinks and a couple hours the four men were happy with the security of the small grocery store. They settled in to sleep for the night when the banging started.

Out of Nowhere

The aluminum sheet sliced into the soft tissue just above the zombie’s rotten shoulder. It fell forward forcing the sheet of aluminum through its rotten arteries, severing any life the zombie had in it. The creature fell forward into Erik. Its black putrid blood drenched Erik’s twice washed shirt. Erik screams.

“God, please don’t let me touch the blood… dont… no… please God.”

The zombie grabs Erik’s shirt. Erik twists and turns to free himself. The creature bleeds a thick putrid liquid. Erik shoved the creature forward. It lost its footing and fell. The sheet of aluminum slips from the wound and thunders to the ground.

Erik stumbles backward. He removes his shirt and pants. He skirts back and hides within the darkness. He stares at the motionless creature till his eyes become heavy and he falls asleep.

The sound of hammers, multiple hammers wakes Erik from his sleep. Voices echo.

“This is a stupid place to hide. Have you seen the large picture windows. Dude, find some large sheets of wood or something.”

“Shut up yo.. This is the only thing close we could find. Don’t criticize.”

“Get out!” Erik shouted from the darkness.

“What the hell was that,” said one of the voices.

“There is someone in here, you idiot.” Replied the other.

“Settle it down,” commanded another. The voice is foreign with a heavy French accent.

“It’s likely a survivor.”

“Get out!” Erik repeated forcefully.

“We are not here to harm you, brother. We are here for shelter. We were captured and tossed into the walls of the city. This is the closest safe shelter, replied the French man.

“You’ll see how safe it is when you fall into my traps,” Erik replied.

“What traps,” replied one of others. “Those stupid-ass wires we cut with the weights?”

Erik shoved a sheet of plywood forward. It slipped under the metal shelves, then slid into his ankles. He swore and found himself trapped against the back wall.

The Red Prius

An explosion rung through the early morning air.  Blood from the infected clung to Erik’s face.   The infected lay on the broken concrete and the hood of the old, red Mustang.  The hood is bowed downward and covered in gore. The windshield is broken and bloody.

“God, that’s going to bring down my resale value,” he said with a smile.  Outside the car, to the right he noticed a group of infected fighting their way through the tall grass toward Michigan avenue.  Behind Erik was a simular group struggling to fit through a small space between cars.  Erik remembered the duffle bag and grabbed it along with the bat.  He tossed it over his shoulder and stepped forward toward the others.

The red Prius was fifty feet ahead of him when he heard the scream.  He leapt forward and around another car.  He walked up to the Prius slowly as another scream erupted from the car.  The windows of the Prius were grime-filled like everything else.  He could make out the figure of the young lady in the back seat.  She was swinging her arms and struggling with something.  Sitting near the passenger-side rear door Erik walked around the Prius.  The doors on the passenger-side were closed and locked.  He could see Rebecca fighting with an infected woman.  The woman had turned around but was still restrained by the seatbelt.  Erik banged on the passenger-side window but this only frightened Rebecca and sent her scrambling to the driver’s side.  He banged again and flattened his face against the glass.

“Rebecca, it’s me.  Unlock the doors.  I need to get in.”

Rebecca looked toward Erik.  He wasn’t even sure she recognized him.  She pushed herself against the rear driver’s door.  Erik shouted again.

Rebecca blinked, paused then attempted to crawl toward the rear passenger door but the infected creature grabbed her hair and pulled.  Rebecca freed herself and crawled back to the driver’s side of the small car.  Erik pointed to door behind her and attempted to walk toward her but a tall, infected man stood in front of him.

Erik dropped the duffle and stepped back.  He squatted and pulled the wooden bat from the bag.  Three more infected were very near this one and would be on him in less then a minute.  Erik knelt and swung at the tall creatures legs, connecting and blowing it’s knee sideways.  The creature fell to the left and leaned against another car.  Erik ran around the front of the to the driver’s side rear door.  He pulled the door handle and it opened.  Rebecca fell backward, into his arms.  Erik helped her to her feet and stepped away from the Prius.

She stood silent, staring up at him.  Erik searched for meaning, for a reason she was not moving.  After a long minute he grabbed her by the waist, lifted her and placed her over his shoulder.  He then walked away from the scene.  Rebecca struggled but Erik held on to the young lady till they were far enough.  Jean Claude, stood watching as Erik stepped past him.

“Thanks for you help,” Erik snapped.

“Looked like you had it,” Jean replied.

“Damn it, I forgot the shotgun.”

New Day

Darkness took over as Erik finished the bottle of wine.  Guilt racked thoughts persisted within his head as he looked out a grime covered window.

His wife,  her face painted in fear, stared at him.  The memory of her death haunted him.  The wine, warm and ineffective was now gone.  Erik stared forward out the window and watched as the memories paraded by.  His daughter, a beautiful, talented young woman stepped forward.  Her face fallen and her eyes hollow.  The beauty that once encircled her was now gone, replaced by the infection.

“The Deadwood infection…” he began.  “A bacteria trigger by research into effector proteins that caused anomalies in plants.  Plants!  Not children or wives of researcher but plants.”
“It’s not your fault.”

“It is,” Eric replied to his doppleganger.  “It’s all my fault.  This whole zombie, lockdown, take over the world, new world order, mess is my fault.”

Eric began to fall asleep.  His head switching off and his eyelids falling over his world.  His leather, seat shaped bed, jerked.  Eric looked to the right, cleared the sleep from his eyes and saw an animal grazing near the passenger side door.

“Is that a deer?  A four-legged hunted creature within the walls of the city?  That’s not possible.  This city is surrounded by walls.”

The deer, fawn colored and oblivious to anything around it, chewed on the long grasses beneath it.  There was a long knife within the duffelbag, along with a heavy steel chain.  To the right of the chain was a small shotgun, it’s wooden stock cut short in a hurry.

Erik opened the chamber and found a round buried within the weapon.  He smiled and attempted to open the driver’s door when the deer bolted and disappeared from view.  Seconds later the hood of the old Mustang collapsed under the weight of the creature.  The windshield cracked.  From the left, an infected monster stepped past his window.  Erik froze and waited for it to clear the door.  That monster grabbed a hold of anything it could and bit down.  Blood covered the windshield as Erik watched.

Erik cleared the grim from the Mustang’s driver’s side window and searched for other infected.  Seeing none, he slowly stepped from the driver’s door.  The noise from the door alerted the infected woman, closest to him but she was distracted by the meal they had fought so hard for.  A young and disfigured infected man bolted for Erik as he placed his left foot outside the door.  Erik noticed him and attempted to close the door.  He screamed in pain as he realized his mistake and allowed the door to open to free his foot.  The infected man pounced on the opportunity and pushed open the door.

Erik struggled to close the door but the creature easily beat out any strength he had.  The infected man stepped forward and shoved it’s gruesome face into the Mustang.  Erik fell backward leaving his legs vulnerable.  The creature grabbed a handful of Erik’s thigh just before the shotgun fired a mess of steel bearings from the end of the barrel.  The noise echoed through the steel trap Erik sat within.  The bearings, that didn’t hit the infected man, shot through the car.  Erik hid, as best he could, within the seats. He kicked the monster out and on it’s back.  After the ringing in his ears stopped Erik stepped out into the early morning sun to face a new day.

Do Zombies have Friends?

“Look at you, guiding all the innocence to safety,”  Erik’s doppleganger taunted as the group passed another nest.  “You know they are not innocent, don’t you?  You are not innocent either.”

“Shut up!” Erik shouted out loud as Steve rambled on about accounting to the tall Haitian man named Jean Claude.

“Look at the ragtag group you got here.  Remember the group you came in with…”

“Enough,” Erik looked away and noticed all four of the others were staring at him.

“Yea, what of it.  I have imaginary friends.”

With that said the others walked a little faster heeding corrections Erik made to their forward momentum.

Michigan Avenue, a grass covered throughway of old, split the large grass fields of the city in half.  Nature tried it’s best to erase what it could but what it struggled to remove left a large patch to walk upon.

“This road should help us,” Erik said then added.  “Has anyone seen those other two gentlemen?”

The others nodded then began the long trip toward the worn and overgrown buildings downtown.

The walking infected populated the road ahead, hanging out near the cars like teenagers parked on a Friday night.

“I wonder what they talk about,” Rebecca said.

“Who, the infected?  There’s no conversation going on?”  Erik replied noticing he was left alone with the young girl.

“Look at them, they stand next to each other.  I bet they hang out with their friends.”

“Your dreaming little girl.  The infected have no friends.”

Erica looked back.  Noticed the young lady talking to Erik and called to her.  Rebecca smiled politely and sped up to catch up with her mother.

“It’s getting a bit dark,” Erik said after about an hour.  “We should really hide out for the night.  The cars are not the safest, but it’s all we really have.”

Steve, Erica and Rebecca settled for a Red Prius.  They locked the doors and settled in as much as they could.  Steve and Erica were in the front seat and Rebecca the back.

Erik found an old red Mustang, surprised to see such a prize within the walls of this infected city.  Inside, the vehicle Erik found a black duffel bag, a wooden bat and half a bottle of wine.

Let Us In

An older white man, beard grey and covered in gore pounded on the thick store windows as Erik stood behind it.

“Let us in!” The old man shouted.

There were nine left, a cluster of desperation, as the infected stumbled after them.  Erik watched.  The revolver, he found behind the service desk, floated within a numb grip.  Pointed at the gray strands of hair below the man’s nose.  The old man stopped pounding on the window, looked back and noticed another prisoner was taken down in a gory infected lunge.  He placed his face against the dirty glass, his arms outstretched.

“Kill me!  Just do it!”  He shouted.

Erik squeezed the trigger.  The hammer clicked back.  A noise startled Erik and he fired into the wall on the left.  The old man, stepped back and watched as a group of prisoners stepped into the Corner Store from the back.

“Get out of my store!”  Erik shouted.  “This is my store!”

“Hold up,” replied a tall black man.  “My name is Jean Claude.  We are not hear to hurt you.  We just need a safe place to stay.”

“This is not a safe place,” Erik replied but then paused.  “You have an accent.  What is that, where are you from?”

“Ay, I am Haitian, man.  I moved up here before the infection.  I’m not a threat.  We are not a threat.  We just need a place to stay and then we will move on.”

Erik turned to find the old man had disappeared from the window replaced by several infected, eager to step threw the window.

“They are going to break my window,” Erik replied as the others approached.  “They are…”

Soon, Erik was disarmed and forced to sit.

“Listen here, you crazy nut,” Sean Baker stepped in front of Erik.  “I have had way too much of this.  The threats, the beatings and the intimidation.  I have no problem ending your life.”

“Stop Sean,” shouted Andrew Baker, a carbon copy of the blue eyed, dark skinned, man that held Erik by the collar of his shirt.

“You, all need to stop,” added the old, graying man.  The old man’s voice was slow and careful.  “This man has been trapped in this store for God knows how long.  He is allowed some paranoia and psychosis.  Let’s figure out what we are going to do now.  I’m stuck in this damn place with my granddaughter and her family.  I don’t want to see anymore violence.”

Sean let Erik go and stepped away.  Erik searched the room to see all nine survivors standing around him.  “Did you close and lock the back door?”