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19th December

I shouted out to everyone that I was here to help them all. I said they needed to get off the train, run to the back and get on the other carriage that had the doors open. I told Adam to help the others do what I said. When he asked me where I was going I told him I had to help the others.

I moved through the panicking woman and children as they barged past me to get to the open door. One of the woman put her hand on my shoulder. I couldn’t see very clearly in the grey light, but her voice was sincere as it thanked me. I pushed through to the next door and opened it. From the doorway I repeated my speech to the masses on the next carriage. There was a general murmuring of concerned voices and as I ran forward. The shambling dead came up behind me, unlucky in catching the swift prey escaping out of the last carriage, they burst in. Then pandemonium broke out.

Woman screamed, children cried and, up the front of the carriage, a male voice bellowed in anger. Oh crap.

I ran forward and mashed the lit-up open button on the door. “Get to the last carriage, get to the last carriage.” I repeated as a mantra to the prisoners leaping past me out into the first tendrils of early dawn.

The stomping of boots in front of me rang out over the panicked breaths and barefooted running of the other passengers. A shot rang out and voices shrieked once more. I instinctively ducked, the zoms were pouring though this carriage, swiping at the woman, children and hostage takers alike. I pushed the last couple of prisoners out the door and leapt to the ground myself. I had to jump to reach the door close button on the outside of the carriage. I heard shouts inside, now muffled by the closed door and a couple more gun blasts rang out. I felt the need to savour the moment, but still had work to do.

I pushed and encouraged the poor wretches ahead of me and jumped up to close the next door I came to as well. I shoved the woman and children on, and told them to get on the carriage and that I would catch up.

At the end of the prisoner carriage, nearest my own train, I got to work unlocking the carriage hitches and unplugging the electric connections. I then ran to the passenger carriage of my own train where the last remaining passengers were struggling to climb on board. I unceremoniously shoved a couple of them on before clambering up myself and hitting the door close button.

Through the gloomy light I looked around. The carriage was jammed full of wild, staring eyes. The filth on their faces only making the whites of their fearful eyes glow brighter. I caught sight of Adam, threw him a wink and strode off towards my engine cab. I left the door open so the escapees could see there was more passenger room in the next carriage too, and leapt into my driver’s seat. I shoved the throttle forward and with a lurch and a jerking of carriages, we took of at a break-neck walking pace. Followed closely by a carriage of rescued woman, children, and my son. Tailing along behind us was a, hopefully, empty carriage of carnage, then weapons, then food and stores. We had left behind a bunch of evil bastards and a dozen or so starving slovs with a debt to repay.

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Posted by on 19 December in Zombie Philes

 

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7th November

I’ve been on the trail for a couple of weeks now. Following the iron road through towns and cities. The carnage to either side of the track shows me which way they went whenever we come to a junction. They’re not exactly sneaking through the country. There’s nothing discrete or stealthy about a diesel train, half a dozen carriages and a bunch of complete crackpots armed to the teeth and rampaging up and down the country. But that’s jumping ahead. Don’t want to give too much away too soon.

So the hairy hillbilly, I heard his name was Kyle, drags me along behind him down the length of the carriage. This is when I notice there are others in the carriage too. A couple of small children cower in each other’s arms, curled up on one seat. A, what once was blonde haired, woman, looking thin and bedraggled, her huge, bulging eyes pleading, and at the same time I see pity. What could she possibly have pity for me for? At least I had a meal, of sorts, in the last day or two. Or had I? You know, I don’t have a clue to this day how long I had been unconscious. Either of the times.

Anyway, my odorous pal Kyle drags me to the door which connects the carriage to the next one. We’re heading forward, in the direction the train is moving. I can feel the movement of the train now and can see by the speed that the trees are sliding past the windows at we are moving very slowly. Not much more than walking pace.

Kyle swings the door open and steps forward and opens the next door. He pulls me through and I feel an urge to close the doors behind me. Well, it’s only the polite thing to do. But in a fit of rebellion I leave them open to swing in the motion of the wallowing train. The one behind me slams shut and as I look over my bloodied shoulder I see through the window in the door that the other one still swings back and forth. As pathetic as this seems, it gives me the merest sliver of satisfaction. After all, I don’t particularly like the hospitality that I’ve received to date and any slight on my hosts, however minor, seems like a victory to me.

I must have slowed as Kyle gave a hard yank on my shirt scruff and I stumbled forward through the next carriage. I braced myself with my tied hands on a seat and leant forward. I came face to face with the terrified face of a girl around sixteen years old. Her face was bruised and beaten. Her hair in ragged disarray and it looked as if she, or somebody else, had torn out great clumps of it. What little clothing she had on was torn and filthy. The terror on her face was evident, and her mouth opened in a silent moan of horror. Snot ran down her lips and left trails in the grime.

“Sorry.” I uttered as I straightened up. I resumed my stumbling along behind the man-mountain. Around me I didn’t see too many of the inhabitants as they were mostly lying down on the bench seats and hidden from view behind the seatbacks, but I heard whimpers, moans and a lot of crying from the dark recesses of the carriage. Many of the overhead fluorescents were out or flickering off and on annoyingly in this carriage, and added to the sense of hopelessness. I could taste the fear and over the smell of urine and sweat was the stench of defeat.

We cleared the next set of doors, but I managed to hang on to the handle of the first door, making sure it closed behind me. I don’t know why I did this. Was it to close those poor wretches off from whatever it was that so terrified them, or was it to close them off from me? So I didn’t feel their terror washing over me in waves. So I couldn’t sense their hopelessness seeping into my pores. So I didn’t break down and sob the way I felt I needed to. Then I looked up, and felt the need to steel my nerves.

This next carriage was host to the roughest, meanest, nastiest pieces of human filth I had witnessed. Not even the street gangs of the old world, nor anything the movies could throw at you could match a tenth of the grim reality before me. This carriage had only about ten people in it, but they were each the size of Kyle, easily. Mostly men, but there were at least two, what could loosely be termed, woman. It was something like what I once saw on that movie, what was it, Mad Max? They wore black. Any shade of black you could find. Where the clothes ended and the skin began was a mystery as the dirt and dried blood of victims stained them black as well. Some sported dark sun glasses. Most wore leather or denim. One had a filthy red bandanna tied on his head, and out the back sprouted a mass of writhing dreadlocks.

Some went quiet when I was dragged into the room, but most carried on with their cursing and raucous, almost forced, laughter at some vile comment another had made. This was where I picked up Kyle’s name as they shouted at him to let them ‘play with’ me. One spat at the back of my leg as I stumbled through. I was nearly clear of them when one guy stuck his leg out and I tripped over it. I glanced over my shoulder and saw he was immediately on his feet, a knife the size of a small sword in his hands and bearing towards my throat.

“Leave ’em Jack.” Kyle my saviour and gracious host said. “We’re off to see the Boss first, then you can acquaint yourselves.” There it was again: “Baaaawss”

Jack sat back down with a sneer on his face and a wicked twinkle in his eye. I didn’t like that look much. It said “We’re not finished here.” I didn’t like Jack very much. For some reason I don’t think he liked me from the moment I first tripped over him either. With any luck he’ll be the first with my blade in his ribs before this is all over. But I digress.

Surviving the gauntlet was a relief. It was the next carriage that was to bring the biggest surprise of them all. That was where Kyle dragged me in to face the Boss.

 
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Posted by on 7 November in Uncategorized

 

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3rd November

The number of walking dead in this small town I’m in now is too thick to go out at night again. I’ll hunker down in this dusty old store until daybreak when they retire to their dark holes before continuing. They can’t be that far ahead now anyway.

So where was I? Oh yeah, unconscious. Again.

So the next time I come to my senses, the whole world seems to be rocking and rolling, and not in the musical sense. I’ve been propped up against something cold and metal, and everything seems to be rocking back and forwards. Adam is there, staring intently into my face with his blue eyes. They’re red from crying, and crying isn’t like him at all. There’s something cold and wet down the left side of my face and I look down to see my left shoulder has spots of blood on it. Well, that explains the cold and wet, but not the rocking.

Adam’s face lurches back and forwards as I rock back and forwards too. We get out of synch and he comes towards me as I go forwards. He hoarsely whispers to me. “Dad, dad, are you OK? Do you know where we’re going dad?” Suddenly he’s jerked back and I see somebody has him by the back of his collar and has yanked him off me and dumped him on the floor. It’s hairy guy again. His muddy, brown eyes are red rimmed. What little skin on his face that isn’t covered in black, brown and a tingle of red hairs is caked in months of grime, blood and who knows what other crusty crud. He leers at me, and this time I see a glimpse of yellow teeth behind the facial furniture.

Now I know we’re in the midlands of the UK somewhere, but whenever I think back to this guy talking to me, I can only hear it in a Southern American hillbilly accent. For all I know he was probably a bank manager, or professor of something or other in his past life, but from this point on, in this written version of what happened, he’ll always be an ignorant, ugly, dirty and smelly hillbilly to me.

“‘Bout time you woke up boooy.” He drawled. “Got an appointment with the Boss.” He pronounced the capital ‘B’. Almost a “Baaawss”. In my version of the truth anyway.

He sways back and forth before me to the same rhythm I seem to be feeling. He towers over me like a giant made of mud and hair. As he bends down and grabs the front of my shirt, he lets out a puff of foul, rancid breath straight into my face. Standing back up he drags me into a standing position and I lean back against the metallic wall behind me. This is the first time I get to look around and see my surroundings. I’m in a long, narrow room, to either side of me are rows of bench seats covered in a blue, fuzzy patterned material. The space that I’m standing in has no seats, but I see behind where Adam is now prone on the floor a set of metal, double doors, and I realise where I am. I’ve seen these before in my past life. In fact I relied on them five days a week to get me to and from work every day.

We were in a train carriage. And it was moving.

 
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Posted by on 3 November in Zombie Philes

 

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1st May

So day 6 rolled around today and we’re still here.

I think the decision was sealed today when Adam woke up at his usual 6am and crawled under the stiff grey blanket into bed with me and asked when we were going. He probably feels the same sense of unease as I do, or maybe it’s just emanating from me and he’s picking up the vibe. Whatever, we’ve decided to pack up and move on tomorrow after morning chow.

I got to have a good chat with the sergeant today. Seems he’s the reluctant leader of this rag-tag mob. He doesn’t really relish running this camp, but he can’t think of anybody better qualified to keep everybody alive past breakfast, so had to step up when he stumbled (probably, knowing him, marched) into town three years ago. At that time it was nothing more than a bunch of scared and hungry citizens holed up in the upper floors of some barricaded apartment blocks. It took a year’s hard graft to get it up to its current standards. He has designs of reclaiming the entire town and walling it off from the rest of the world, but that is way out in the future. Right now he’s happy to keep things running as they are until they start outgrowing, or more likely, using up all the available resources around here.

We spoke at length about the types of people he has in the community. There are those that want to help out in any way they can. He pointed out that I was one of those, and was even complimentary about how Adam fit right in and did whatever he needed to do around the place. There are those that want to run this place themselves, as some kind of hippy community with love and mung beans and peace to all zombies. Then there are the general layabouts expecting that everything is provided to them on a platter without having to lift a finger themselves.

I told him my FIFO motto – Fit In or Frack Off, and he seemed to like that, but his only concern is that the security of the place is maintained and that everybody has enough to eat. Beyond that, the general layabouts got no more and no less than anybody else. I got the sneaking suspicion that those that pulled their weight got slightly larger portions of rations and the odd snifter of booze when a bottle store raid was pulled off.

I can’t understand this mentality of people that think they are owed anything. Do they think others are also owed something for nothing too? How do you arrive at the conclusion that by doing nothing, you have the same right to your fair share as the guy next to you that works his butt off all day to achieve those things? I simply cannot plumb the depths of a twisted mentality such as that.

So I thank the sergeant for his hospitality and everything and tell him that Adam and I are off the next day to look around further up North. We both check out his maps and he gives me a few pointers of where to avoid, and possible locations of this mythical lab I’m supposed to be looking for.

As a parting gift he pulls out of a cupboard a pistol. He tells me it’s a 9mm, and he plonks a box of ammo next to it. I thank him very much, the thoughts of the layabouts expecting something for nothing still ringing in my ears, but tell him I’m happy with the M16 from the army guys and my handy dandy machete. He then looks up at me with a grin and says “This ain’t for you son, this is for the boy.” I hadn’t even thought of arming Adam. He has his knife, which he’s used on a few occasions, but I’d never considered how old a kid has to be before you give them something as lethal as a gun before.

We really do live in interesting times.

 
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Posted by on 1 May in Zombie Philes

 

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29th July

So the brass have come up with a new location for us. It’s about 300 clicks (military speak) from here and will take about a day to get there – all going well. There’s an old military airfield there right next to the seaside, and one road in and out so it’s easier defended. A couple of helicopter recces found there to be very few baddies in the region and plenty of farms and things to start getting food growing and set up a more permanent base.

Seems the Slovs have their own plans too as the estimated headcount in the towns around here have shot up dramatically and they’re starting to edge their way into the surrounding countryside, looking to surround us. If we’re going to do something, it had better be soon. We won’t make it though a night with that many coming at us from all sides.

 
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Posted by on 29 July in Zombie Philes

 

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5 Apr

Can’t believe it’s taken me almost a month to hit the countryside.

Was pretty convinced I’d find the army had cordoned off the M25 ring road around London to block everybody in, but found they hadn’t even set up roadblocks that far out of the city. I now know why though.

What they would have been blocking in London was exactly the same as what was going on outside the city too. You see, nowhere has been spared. Seems every township I come across out here is crawling with the sick. They seem pretty sluggish and slow out here. At first I thought it was a different strain of the sickness or perhaps they were the opposite – even more sick than those in the CBD. It wasn’t until I saw a dead one lying next to the road that I realised what was going on.

The corpse by the roadside was almost skeleton thin. The gaunt face, like a film of skin barely covering the skull. Lips drawn back in a forced grin – receded black gums making the bared teeth look longer. The sunken and hollow eyes staring up at the gray sky. Even the birds and woodland creatures I would have expected to have a nibble on it had left it alone. Either staying away from the sickness or too little meat left on it to bother. Out here in the countryside there is less to eat you see. At least in the city there was still quite a bit of food around to munch on, even the odd healthy person running around with all that edible flesh about their frame. Out here, unless you can chase down a cow or something, you’re left with grass or a tree to eat, and there isn’t much to keep you going in a paddock for the human body.

Long and short: they’re starting to starve to death. Why did I have to leave my wife in the bedroom unable to open the door? At least if she was able to get out and find something (or somebody?) to eat she might last a bit longer. Oh grief, what a way to go.

 
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Posted by on 5 April in Zombie Philes

 

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24 Mar

Finally found myself a car with the keys in it. Trouble was that it also still had an occupier. Stupid sod couldn’t work out how to get out and had chewed half the leather off the seats. I kindly let her out and obliged her with a few biffs about the scone with my handy, dandy bat to keep her out of harm’s way until I could get into the car.

Nice beamer too. Half a tank of gas so should be able to get a fair way before trying out my siphoning skills. A bit uncomfortable with a spring in your butt though after the owner has eaten half the cushioning off the seat.

A bit of a mission getting through the roads too. A lot of abandoned road blocks with those anti-tank barriers or whatever they are. You know, you see them in war movies with the three logs tied in a pyramid? Well, instead these are steel ones, and covered in coils of the nastiest barbed wire I’ve ever seen. Have had to get out of the car a few times to move them out of the way. A couple of them I’ve managed to squeeze the car through though.

Picked up a rifle at one of the checkpoints. Bet that poor sod was in trouble when he got back to camp sans weapon. Found my supply of bullets I brought with me fit, so been practicing shooting street signs with it. Don’t know anything about guns. It’s a black one.

Anyways, time to hit the road again.

Pencil - Gun (small)

 
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Posted by on 24 March in Zombie Philes

 

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