Monday, April 18, 2016

The Third Series from Zombie Adventure BLEEDING KANSAS: Escape from Dead City, Part III

Here’s a link to the page with the links to the first two series. The series follow a chronological narrative, but it’s not like you absolutely have to read those first. Our tale opens on the morning of the first full day of the New Weird Order, and Derek Grace knows there’s no safety in the city. He’s not even sure of Tanner, the only other living soul in the luxury hotel they were locked up in while the police and National Guard were overwhelmed outside.

Still, you do what you gotta do, and oftentimes it’s with people you’d rather not be doing it with. Especially when SHTF.

“The undead from the garage are staggering out into the sunlight and headed our way.”


I start the engine, and as I turn around to check my rear I see a stocky girl in a gore-blackened XXL sleep-shirt stumbling towards the Tank. I shift into reverse and slam into her. She falls backwards, her skull cracking loudly on the pavement. I hear the snapping of bones as my left rear tire rolls over her.

It’s a short roll out from the garage to the doors of the hotel. I wish it was further. Apparently a bunch of these things have been using the garage to keep out of the sun. It won’t take them long. I screech to a halt before the glass doors.

A buzzer squawks against my trying to pop the hatch while we’re still in gear. Tanner takes this as a signal to jump out of the Tank before I can get it stopped. He’s already at the doors, pulling them open as I throw the shifter in park. The hatch opens without complaint, but it’s slow. I open my door and jump out. The undead from the garage are staggering out into the sunlight and headed our way. I see two more coming across the plaza from the street.

Tanner puts my luggage out first. I wedge my gear between the rear seats. I turn and Tanner is already handing me his large suitcase. Now his suitbag….

I turn and look up. “Behind you!”

Tanner has just enough time to duck out under the grasp of the rotund man in the stained gray track suit. This seems to surprise him. He senses my presence, though. With a loud crowing noise, he comes at me for the kill. I’m reaching for a hammer I’ll never pull loose in time when there’s a deafening report and the man in the stained gray tracksuit falls over.

And then Tanner tosses me his golf clubs.

Golf clubs?

“Goddamnit.” 

“Just close the hatch, let’s go!”

For a split second I want to throw them at the family of three, mom, dad and Junior toddling up behind us. Instead I toss the bag of clubs atop Tanner’s other gear, slam the hatch, and run for the driver’s side door—

—where I’m met by a petite, late-middle-aged woman in a pink nightgown. I see her rage-and-hunger-twisted face and punch her in her gut. She folds. I open the door and throw myself inside.

Tanner is already strapped in. “Why didn’t you leave the keys in the vehicle?”

“Force of habit.” Because we have trust issues, Tanner. I’ve got the Luxury Tank in gear. A thump of hands and arms across my driver’s side window tells me the woman has found her feet just before I bolt across the brick plaza. 

The dead are massing in the street to intercept us. Normally I’d turn left to get to the Interstate but the swarm is too thick. I might as well drive into a wall. Or a mound of pale, carnivorous ants.

I turn right, hoping I can evade them by going around the block. Wherever these things were hiding as the sun came up, they’re out, drawn to the hum of our engine, the roar of Tanner’s gunfire, the cries of their fellow risen dead. What were once men, women, and children shamble towards us, lurching and staggering from around the buildings and into the street, closing in as fast as their rigor-stiffened legs can carry them. 

With the numbers they have, they don’t need to be very fast. It’s up to me to outthink and outrun all this deadly simple arithmetic. I glance over to see Tanner trying to figure out the GPS over our bouncing and swerving. “Kansas City International Airport,” I say while pulling hard right to avoid a group of three lunging for us. I avoid overcorrecting and hitting the lamp post by jumping the curb at the corner. That was my first right turn. Fortunately, this street is clear. I sprint down this block and skid into my next right, knowing full well I won’t be as lucky on this last run.

“Keep straight,” the GPS says.

All of Kansas City is pouring out of the side streets to swarm us. Three or more will be bold enough to punch through the glass to get at us. I imagine the rest tearing at the sheets of safety glass, heedless of injury, reaching in with lacerated hands and pulling us out by whatever those hands grab first. How many mouths, how many sets of teeth will cover our bodies, from our faces, eyes, ears, arms, legs? How much will we actually suffer, our beings torn away a single mouthful at a time, before death takes mercy on us?

“You strapped in?” I ask Tanner.

“I recommend picking up the pace, if you don’t mind,” he says.

“All right, then. We’re going to hit some people.”


NEXT: “The interior of the Luxury Tank is dark for all the ruined bodies of once-people slapping and pounding at the glass.”



          



That’s right, there are THREE different covers for Bleeding Kansas. The story of the first two is at the end of Part 1 of this excerpt series. The cover on the far right is for the German translation by Luzifer Verlag. The apocalypse has gone international. Put your affairs in order. Better yet, put in an order for one of these books. You’ll want something to read in the down time between catastrophes.