The Nation Chronicles series from Wendell Sweet.
It had been broad daylight, but there had been no one to stop him or any of the other gangs that roved the streets and did as they pleased. He had broken into a pawn shop. She had talked him into going into the medication aisle at the Korean store down the street. And she had picked up the sleeping pills. He had seen her do it. She had told him it was Midol. Relief for period pain. She had picked up a box of Tampons too. He had turned red and had not asked her about them again. As a bonus he had left her alone that night also. Probably thinking that she had been indisposed. Fine. Whatever. It didn’t matter any longer.
It was nearly dark by the time they had finally passed out. That had pissed her off. Pissed her off and scared her too. The dead were out here somewhere. The dark was their time.
They had died off when the planes had come over, but they were back now. Strong, or becoming strong. She wanted to get as far away as she could before the street was completely lost to the night. There were people down the street, two blocks or so down. She had seen them coming and going. Making sport of the zombies. Enticing them into chasing them and then killing them with head shots from the shotguns they carried; routing them out in the daylight and running them over with cars, shooting them as they roared by, racing the block from end to end in a souped up car they had gotten from somewhere. They had been out earlier. If she could get down the street she was sure they would take her in. Positive.
She stopped at the end of the street, caught her breath leaning against the side of a pickup truck, and then took off once more at a fast walk.
She was halfway through the block when she realized someone was following her, and her heart sank like a stone. Bobby… Had to be. She stopped and peered back through the shadows and dark. The moonlight was bright, but it was still not easy to see. She thought she saw movement at the corner of a building two buildings back. She screwed up her courage.
“Bobby… Bobby don’t be sore… Don’t…” She stopped and squinted into the gloom. Two people had come from around the edge of that house. Two, and neither of them looked anything like Bobby. Both were shuffling and lurching as they came. Her heart leapt high in her throat. Seeming to clog her airway. A strangled squawk came from her open mouth. She swore under her breath and turned to run.
He caught her under the arms. He must have been standing right behind her all along, she realized.
“Hey… Hey, there’s no…” She stopped in mid word and began to scream at the rotted face that angled down at her own face. His hands clawed at her throat, closing off her screams and then his teeth found her and he began to tear and bite. A second later the others joined in, dragging her to the ground and then out into the road. They left her under the street lights, her blood pooling around her head.
It is the end of polite society… What is left is instinct, might, will…
A devastating virus is spreading, changing those it touches, in death and in some sort of false life again. The cities have fallen to destruction, gangs, and the dead. There are few places for those who have survived to gather to rebuild themselves, and as the days pass fewer still left to join them, while the dead grow in numbers daily…
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