The Zombie Plague Book One
Created by Dell Sweet
PUBLISHED BY: Geo Dell and independAntwriters Publishing
The Zombie Plague Book One
Additional Copyrights 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2015, 2017 Wendell Sweet All rights reserved
This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your bookseller and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
This is a work of fiction. Any names, characters, places or incidents depicted are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual living persons places, situations or events is purely coincidental.
This novel is Copyright © 2010 – 2013 George Dell & independAntwriters Publishing and all rights to this work have been reserved by Wendell Sweet. No part of this book may be reproduced by any means, electronic, print, scanner or any other means and, or distributed without the author’s permission.
Permission is granted to use short sections of text in reviews or critiques in standard or electronic print…
The silence seemed to go on forever as Mike and Janet waited. Sudden gunfire erupted in the distance again. Janet moaned and Mike pulled her closer to him. “Ssss alright,” Mike told her. “Alright.” He didn’t believe it anymore than he had the last time he’d said it. The burst of gunfire came and went just that quickly, and then silence fell hard on the still morning air.
Janet held herself rigidly. Mike could feel her tremble against him. He patted her head. A stupid, useless, meaningless thing to do, he told himself, but he continued nonetheless, patting her head and stroking her hair. Useless, but if nothing else, it seemed to help calm him.
He drew a deep breath, and the radio squawked. “Mike?” Bob asked.
Mike took a deep breath and swallowed hard before he trusted his voice to answer. Jan let go of her breath in a deep whoosh and drew in a long, deep shuddering breath. Mike stroked her hair once more.
“Yeah,” Mike answered quietly.
“It’s bad,” Bobs voice broke as he spoke. “It’s bad, Mike. It’s bad.”
In his head Mike could already hear the words he didn’t want to hear. He had heard everyone’s voice except Candace’s. It only stood to reason… Still, he didn’t want to hear it.
“It’ll be okay,” Jan told him. She pulled him tight. Her own hands trying to pull his head against her breast. “Mike… It’ll be okay.”
“It’s Lydia,” Bob said. His voice choked with emotion.
“Candace?” Mike asked. He hated himself for asking. He hated the weakness in his voice. How could it be Lydia, he asked himself. I just heard her voice. How could it be?
“I’m here, Babe,” Candace said through the crackle of static. Behind her voice they could hear what sounded like sobbing. The sobbing came across clearly as she stopped talking. “We’re on our way back… We’re coming back… It’s over,” Candace said. She held on to the button for a split second longer, the smooth silence spitting quietly, then the radio in Mike’s hand went back to solid static once more.
“Be careful, Honey. Be careful.” Mike’s voice came through the radio in her hand. She nodded, and then keyed the button, “I will. We’re coming back.” She looked around her.
Tom sat cradling Lydia in his arms. Bright, thick blood covered the ground under her chest and the side of Tom’s pant leg. The three other bodies lay close by. Bob stood, ashen faced, his gun still held tightly in one hand.
The pickup truck idled noisily about a hundred yards away from where Candace stood. The doors hung open. The Suburban and the State truck rumbled from behind her. Maybe, she thought, five minutes had passed since they had spotted the truck and stopped behind them. The kids had come out shooting. Just like in the movies, Candace thought. Exactly that. Hell! They had acted like it was a movie. Five minutes and four people dead. She shook her head slowly.
Tom looked up from the ground and met Candace’s eyes.
“Let’s get her in the truck, okay, Tom,” She said softly.
Tom’s head slowly nodded.
“What… what about these… these others?” Bob asked.
“Fuck them,” Tom rasped. “Fuck them! They can rot right there. They’re not going in the truck!” He looked at Candace defiantly.
“Okay,” Candace agreed. “Okay… Bob?” She waited until Bob’s eyes left Lydia’s body. “Help Tom with Lydia?”
Bob nodded and started towards Tom
“No,” Tom said quietly. “Don’t need help.” He swiped a blood covered hand across his eyes, leaving a bright smear of scarlet across his forehead as he did. “I’ll do it. I’ll take care of her.” His voice shook at the last, but he got to his feet, carefully holding Lydia in his arms, and headed for the pickup truck.
“Bob,” Candace said, motioning to the bodies.
Bob looked at her questioningly.
“In the river. We can’t just leave them here.”
Bob nodded, and together they bent to pick up the first body.
A few minutes later Candace let the last body slip from her hands and plunge over the cliffs and into the river far below. She turned her palms upright and stared at them for a second.
“Candace,” Bob said. She nodded, and followed Bob to the truck.
Tom sat behind the wheel, Lydia slumped on the passenger seat, her head resting against Tom’s shoulder. “You okay to drive?” she asked.
Tom nodded. His eyes met her own. They were red, and tears perched on the bottom lids waiting to spill down his cheeks. He cleared his throat, started to speak and then cleared his throat once more. “I’m going to drive out of the city. There’s a small little place out by Huntingtonville. My parents were raised there. There’s a cemetery there…” He trailed off, and Candace saw the tears that had been perched on his lower lid begin to course their way down his cheeks. He started to speak again, shook his head and gave up momentarily. Candace turned her eyes up to the clear blue morning sky and waited. Tom’s voice came to her quietly a few minutes later as she watched the empty sky.
“There’s a shed… In the Cemetery… I thought.” His voice choked up again.
“Yeah. Yeah,” Candace said softly. “You go. We’ll stop and get Jan and Mike. They’ll want to be there.”
Tom nodded. His hand fell to the shift lever on the steering column. His eyes, tear-filled and overflowing, swept up to her once more.
“You’ll be okay to get there?” Candace asked.
Tom nodded, not trusting his voice to speak. He turned his eyes back to the road.
Candace nodded. “We’ll meet you there.” She stepped away from the truck and watched as Tom pulled slowly away.
Mike ~ March 15th
It’s been a very long day in more ways than one. We are five now. Lydia is gone. It’s crazy, but true. Tom is in bad shape, sitting by the fire reading Lydia’s diary.
We buried her today in Huntingtonville, a little place outside of the city. There’s a cemetery there right by the river. Tom’s parents are buried there. Now Lydia is too. It took a lot of work; the ground is still frozen a few feet down. It could’ve been worse. If everything wasn’t melting, we would’ve had a much harder time digging the hole. Tom couldn’t bring himself to do it. Bob and I did it.
To make the explanation short, we were ambushed. I shouldn’t say we. I wasn’t even there. Neither was Jan. We were left behind to watch the cave.
It started in the night; these kids came and stole one of our trucks. We didn’t know they were kids of course. It turned into mess. Three kids are dead. Young kids. What a waste. We don’t even know why they did it, why they chose to shoot at the others. None of it.
Everyone is messed up, me included. Jan too, because we weren’t there. But it’s over. This part’s over, but really it’s not over at all. I don’t know what’s next. None of us do. The day has already lasted fifteen hours so far. The sun doesn’t seem to be moving at all. We don’t know what to make of it. Everyone just wants to get past this day, for it to be over.
Lydia ~ March 15th
Lydia is gone. They took her. I can’t believe it, it’s like a nightmare. I can’t deal with it. I won’t forget it. Tom.
The moon rode high in the sky. Frost gleamed from the freshly turned dirt that lay scattered across the gravel of the road that lead into the cemetery. Silence held, and then a scraping came from the ground, muffled, deep.
At the edge of the woods, eyes flashed dully in the over-bright moonlight. Shapes shifted among the trees and then emerged from the shadows onto the gravel roadway. One dragged a leg as he walked, clothes already rotted and hanging in tatters. A second seemed almost untouched, a young woman, maybe a little too pale in the wash of moonlight. She walked as easily as any woman, stepping lightly as she went. The third and fourth moved slower, purposefully, as they made their way to the freshly turned soil. They stopped beside the grave, and silence once again took the night, no sounds of breathing, no puffs of steam on the cold night air.
“Do you think…?” The young woman asked in a whisper.
“Shut up,” the one with the dragging leg rasped. His words were almost unintelligible. His vocal cords rotted and stringy. The noises came once again from the earth and the four fell silent… waiting…
Her hand broke through into the moonlight. A few minutes later her head pushed up, and then she levered her arms upward and began to strain to pull herself up and out of the hole. She noticed the four and stopped, her pale skin nearly translucent, her blond hair tangled and matted against her face and neck. Her lips parted, a question seeming to ride on them.
“It’s okay,” the young woman whispered, “it’s okay.” She and one of the older ones moved forward, fell to their knees and began to scoop the dirt away from her with their hands.
“It’ll be okay,” Lydia mumbled through her too cold lips.
“It will. It will,” the young woman repeated.