Dan, Ricky, and Alisha made their way a bit further into the city. As much as Alisha would have preferred to get back on the road, she understood that Dan and Ricky had a responsibility to their community to get more supplies and if she wanted to go back with them, she’d have to tag along for now. The three of them snuck through downtown, using the alleyways and shadows for cover. Dan and Ricky seemed to be headed somewhere in particular.
“Where are we going now?” Alisha asked impatiently.
“We just need to make one more stop and then we can head back.” Dan told her.
They stopped, crouching between two buildings, and peered out onto the road in front of them. Directly across the street was a pharmacy.
“That’s where we are headed.” Dan said.
There were six zombies staggered about the road. One of them was getting tripped up by the slimy string of intestine slowly slipping out of it’s own gaping stomach wound. After a moment it finally fell over and began rolling around in the pool of viscera and organs. The others were just beginning to smell Alisha, Dan, and Ricky and had already turned their lifeless stammer towards the three.
“Alright,” Dan said, “Two each. They don’t look too bad. We got this.” He looked at them encouragingly. Ricky nodded as if he’d just been asked if he wanted a soda and Alisha furrowed her brow and took a deep breath. Dan added, “Once we’re finished, meet in back of the pharmacy.”
They came out of the alleyway at full speed. Dan and Ricky took off first leaving Alisha to handle the zombie on the ground and the one nearest it. She went after the walker first. Her shotgun was slung across her back, currently empty of shells and rather useless. She instead wielded a large piece of wood she’d picked up back at the store. It had rusted nails sticking out in several places at one end and the other end she’d wrapped with cloth to form a handle. Alisha swung this large bludgeon straight into the temple of the approaching zombie. Several of the nails pierced the skull and caved in the eye socket. The zombie fell to the ground as Alisha yanked back her weapon, but it immediately returned to it’s feet, it’s busted eyeball now dangling from the smashed hole on it’s face.
The zombie lunged forward at Alisha, snapping it’s broken teeth so hard they cracked. Alisha dodged the gnarly fingers scratching out at her and smashed down again with her bludgeon onto the zombie’s head. It fell back to the ground and Alisha continued pounding the nails into it’s head until there was little left but bits of flesh and hair floating around in a pool of blood. Alisha stood up panting and wiped the blood from her face. She walked over to the zombie that was still squirming around on the ground in its intestines. Alisha raised her bludgeon as high as she could and brought it down hard on the zombies skull. It caved in and sprayed blood all around. Alisha looked down at herself. She looked at the blood under her fingernails.
The walls and doors vibrated with the pounding of undead fists. All of the noise that had been made during the struggle had attracted the attention of every zombie around. They knew they had to find a way out before they were overrun and trapped. They had spent some time getting cleaned up and packing. Oscar was looking worse and worse by the minute. His torso was dark purple all the way around and he could not move without extreme pain.
“He’s got broken ribs.” Beth told them, “He won’t be able to walk.”
Betty started to cry, “What are we going to do? We have to get him out of here!” She sobbed to Peter.
Peter had taken a bad beating as well and was in no shape to try and carry his father. He looked back at Betty with a wretched expression. They both knew they could do nothing.
Alisha looked at Beth. “Maybe Beth and I can carry him.” Alisha said.
Betty looked at Beth, who nodded. But the moment was cut off by Oscar’s weak voice.
“No.” He said between heavy breaths, “You kids need to go.”
“What!?” Betty exclaimed, crouching next to her father, “We are not leaving you here!”
Oscar tried to move a little and let out a yelp of agony. “I can’t be carried anymore than I can walk.” His breath barely let him finish the sentence. “I will slow you down. Get you killed. I can’t.” He coughed and cringed in pain. Betty sobbed.
“We can do it sir,” Beth told him, “we can get you out of here.”
“No!” Oscar tried to yell but let out more of a raspy gasp instead. He continued in an aggressive voice. Looking into his daughter’s eyes, he told her, “You will go now. You will survive this and live.” Then he kissed her forehead as she continued to sobbed. “I love you and your brother Betty. I love you so much. Now go.”
Betty continued to cry and shake her head at her father. Begging him to change his mind. Oscar looked to Alicia and Beth with a desperate expression. Beth gently pulled Betty away from her father while Alisha helped Peter get his backpack on his back. They’d already packed up everything they could carry. The glass on the front door cracked with a loud snapping sound and then shattered. Two zombies fell forward into the store and started crawling towards them. Several more were pushing their way through after. There was no way they could get out through the front.
Peter ran to the back door and got it open. Three zombies tripped over each other to get through the doorway as the door swung open. Alisha and Beth ran to Peter’s side and each started bashing at one of the zombies with bats. Peter smashed into the last one with a crowbar. The zombies from the front were making their way through the small store to them. Betty, in the hysteria, had ran back to her father. Oscar pushed her away, telling her to go with them. Betty cried and pleaded with Oscar to let her try and carry him, and even tried to lift him, but Oscar hollered in agony, forcing Betty to put him back down.
Peter went to pull Betty away but she hit him in his chest and knocked the wind out of him for a moment. Peter went down on one knee to catch his breath. The zombies from the front were right there now and they had to go or die. Alisha helped Peter to his feet and started moving towards the back door. All the zombies had followed the herd toward the front door so they had a short window to escape. Beth grabbed Betty by the arms and pulled her away. Betty pushed Beth off of her and yelled, “No! I will not leave hi…”, but she was cut off by her own screams as undead jars clamped down on her neck. The zombie ripped a softball size chunk of flesh from Betty’s throat and chewed at it wildly. Blood sprayed out of Betty’s neck in thick red streams as she choked and fell to the ground. Two more zombies joined the first as he dug his fingers into her stomach and ripped open her torso.
Peter yelled for his sister as Alisha pushed him out the back door. Beth ran after them, closing the back door behind her. The three of them ran down the alley, Alisha still helping Peter run. They headed where they could not see zombies. Since most of them were still focused on the front of the shop, Alisha, Beth, and Peter quickly made their way away from the herd.
To be continued…
Begin with From Hell They Came: Part One