Chapter 3 - Entry 4
April 21st cont.
I jogged through a residential area outside Green Acres the Guardsmen had already looted and picked a house at random. There’d be no guns, I knew, but there’d still be other weapons. Such as a pair of camper’s hatchets. And a crowbar. And a kitchen knife. While the winds raged outside and smoke-scented rain poured through a hole in the roof, I sat beneath a kitchen table and sharpened the hatchets with a butcher’s stone. I spent the day there, sleeping on and off until nightfall finally arrived.
Lightning arched across the sky amid rolling black clouds as I crept along the street that night. It was pitch black so I relied on my sense of smell more than sight to avoid shambling mobs of zombies. The scent of rotting meat hit me in the face as the wind shifted, driving rain sideways in sheets. Another flash of lightning showed me a garbage truck filled with dead bodies and surrounded by feasting zombies.
“Meals on wheels.” I thought grimly as my mind worked out a plan.
I slipped into a nearby garage and pulled the battery off a station wagon still on the lift, then arched a spark between both terminals with the kitchen knife’s blade. Paper towels caught fire and I rushed them to a metal garbage can. Oily rags went in next. Black smoke filled the interior quickly, making me cough and gag, as I threw two cans of spray-paint inside the flames. The zombies feasting at the garbage truck came to investigate when the two cans finally exploded from internal pressure.
Luck was on my side as I slipped into the garbage truck’s cab and found the keys in the ignition. I’d assumed the Guardsmen used the truck to cart bodies away from Green Acres. Fortunately there was still a quarter tank of gas and a charge left in the battery. It fired up right away.
Like undead ping pong balls, the zombies shifted course and headed back towards the truck as its big engine rumbled to life. I put it in gear and slowly drove down the street, keeping them just out of reach and honking the horn to attract others. There was an army following me by the time I circled around and headed back to Green Acres.
Runners had caught up and were clinging to the truck’s side as I pulled onto the short road leading back to the retirement home. A few hundred shufflers flowed behind me like a moaning tide. The Hummer with the 50 cal machine gun sat parked lengthwise behind the cast iron gate and men were scrambling into position as I revved the big truck’s engine.
A zombie’s fist smashed through the window and I kissed it with a grin. “Momma’s gonna get her boys some food here in a minute hun. Be patient.”
I turned the truck around and waited until the slower zombies pulled even with the cab before putting it in reverse. The engine whined as I floored the gas, loud warning BEEP BEEPs letting the world know a truck was backing up. The Guardsmen started firing when I got within a few hundred feet but the mass of bodies stowed in back and the truck’s metal cargo hold kept even the 50 cal from reaching me.
Men dove for cover when I crashed through the gate and plowed right into the Hummer. Those vehicles were designed to take some serious punishment and their wide wheelbase made them hard to flip over but sheer tonnage and momentum could put a world of hurt on even a hardened vehicle.
Rotting corpses and liquid gore flew out of the back in a rancid wave when the truck finally came to a halt with the Hummer partially crushed beneath it. In the anarchy and near darkness, I dove from the cab and crawled underneath the truck’s massive bulk.
Most of the Guardsmen started shooting the dead bodies, mistaking them for zombies, while the rest trained their weapons towards my vacated seat. One man’s shouts could barely be heard over the roar of their weapons when he tried to sound the alarm.
Zombie runners had reached the scene.
I waited a few minutes as the mass of undead broke over the defenders, watching one young solider fall nearby beneath the weight of five zombies. Once they’d finished stripping most of the meat from his bones, I dragged the corpse to me and relieved it of its M16. The clip was empty but a pair of full ones were in his pockets.
The gunfire sounded sporadic when I peeked out from under the truck. They’d done pretty good, all things considered. Only five or six zombies remained on their feet and two Guardsmen had retreated to one of the remaining Hummers.
I ran forward, waving my hands madly and yelling “Medic!” as they neared. Sure enough they slowed down and opened the passenger door. Their blood splattered the interior as I opened up in full auto. New clips went into my pockets before I turned to finish off the remaining undead.
For the next twenty minutes I wandered around the body-littered grounds, putting down zombies too damaged to walk and looting the Guardsmen of their weapons and ammunition. Sadly, the 50 cal was toast.
A voice crackled over one of their radios as I wandered knee deep in bloody mud and gore. I recognized it immediately and with a grin I pushed the transmit button.
“Heya deputy dipshit. Told ya I’d see ya soon.”