The End, p.1Mark Tufo
Zombie Fallout 3: The End…
Zombie Fallout 3: The End…
Copyright 2011 Mark Tufo
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Zombie Fallout 3: The End…
My wife Tracy, my love, the rock around which my maelstrom revolves, I thank you, I love you and I appreciate you more than I can sometimes tell you. May we always make each other laugh.
My Dad whose unflagging love and belief in my ‘What me worry?’ attitude is a constant source of inspiration for me.
My Mom who passed in April of 2010, you will always be remembered.
My brother Ron who has devoted countless hours listening to my ideas and cleaning up my words that sometimes seem to be more thrown on the page rather than typed.
My editor Mo Happy, you dusted off this book and brought a high polish to it and in so doing have made a new friend and business partner.
To all on FB who have friended me. Your messages, your reviews, your kind words, I thank each and every one of you.
There were some of you that came early and gave me a lift when I was feeling down. There were some of you that have helped me with particular questions or problems I may have had. One of you was the best boss I could have ever asked for, some of you have to work with me now and the even luckier ones are related to me (Sarcasm). But each and every one of you has at some point taken the time out of your busy days to reach out to me and say ‘Hi’ or ‘Love the book’ or ‘What were you thinking?’, to all of you, I would like to express my deepest gratitude.
Prologue 1 -
War torn Europe in the early 1500’s was not a safe place to wander even during high noon. Tomas could not fathom why he was skulking in the shadows on this cold November night. Finding his sister as she passed from cruelty to cruelty had been an all-consuming endeavor. It had been five long years since they had sat together and shared a meal in their father’s small one room hut. They had clung to each other like only siblings could in a world so violent.
Tomas had wept for weeks when his father had sold his sister for some corn meal to help them get through the winter. For a year longer Tomas had suffered under his father’s severe tutelage in an attempt to beat out the ‘insanity’ in his own son. Tomas had finally had enough and ran away. Barely into his teens with no apprenticeship and no master, he narrowly scraped an existence. The meager gains he made were used for any information he could garner to find his sister.
Many times he had come close, only to have her whisked away to some distant town. He would doggedly follow but always a moment too late. Finally his break had come. He could see her at the end of the alleyway. He shook not only from the intense cold that blistered through his ragged garments but also for the joy of reuniting with his beloved sister. The dark cloaked figure she was with held Tomas at bay as he sent waves of malice radiating away. Tomas didn’t dare move from his concealment behind some crates. Fear jogged through his spine. The fluid that leaked down his leg was most likely the only thing that kept him from freezing where he crouched.
Tomas noticed the man look exactly where he hid, but that was impossible nobody could see him in this darkness. Tomas watched as The Stranger ‘kissed’ his sister’s neck. A flash of anger welled up in him. ‘How dare someone do that without a marriage first!’ He stood up just in time to see his sister swoon and fall. The Stranger looked back once at Tomas, laughed a small cruel laugh and then seemingly vanished into a darker shadow. All fear vanished with the removal of The Stranger. Tomas ran the length of the alleyway dropping to his knees to cradle his sister’s head.
Her eye’s fluttered open as he cascaded her face with his tears. “Tomas? Is that really you Tomas?”
“It’s me Lizzie, it’s me!” He cried. “We’re finally together again! How I’ve missed you! Now we can be together again forever!”
“Tomas.” Lizzie said sadly, stroking his face gently. “It’s too late for me.”
“What are you talking about Lizzie? I’m here you’re here, we’re together.” He wept for joy, but something evil was coming he could feel it. Tomas had always had a highly developed sense of apathy. It had proved an invaluable tool while he lived on the fringes of a distraught society. “What is the matter Lizzie? You are burning up.” The heat emanating from her prone form was melting the snow around her.
“You should go Tomas.” She said closing her eyes.
“I can’t leave you Lizzie. We’re all we have, you and me. You told me you would always look out for me. You were the only one that told me I didn’t have witches living in my head.” It was common in early Europe to convict the mentally challenged of witchcraft. “I love you Lizzie.” Even as he said it, he could tell his sister was slipping away.
“I love you too Tomas. And that is why you should go.”
“Why won’t you open your eyes Lizzie? Please, please look at me.”
Tears pushed through her closed lids. “Please Tomas don’t look at me this way. I’m not the sister you used to know. Unspeakable things have been done to me and I found a way to right those wrongs and I took it. I will exact my revenge.”
“That’s not how my Lizzie talks.” Tomas said wiping his blurring eyes.
“GO!” She said pushing him away. Her eyes seemed to produce their own light as she looked at him menacingly.
“I will not!” He screamed, even though his inner thoughts revolved around one word ‘RUN’.
Lizzie sat up. Factions warred within her. The looks she sent him fluctuated between love, sadness and predatory awareness. Tomas kept backing up even as he shook his head in denial of what was happening right in front of him.
With an ungodly speed Lizzie wrapped her hand around Tomas’ neck. He found himself suspended 6 inches off the ground.
“Lizzie, please.” He begged.
Lizzie pulled him in close and punched two neat holes into his exposed collar. Tomas screamed in pain.
“Lizzie please, I love you!” his tears splashing down on her upturned face.
Some last remnant of Lizzie rose to the surface. She pulled her extended canines out of his neck. “GO!” She screamed again. “I won’t be able to stop next time.” She looked defeated, with her head bowed. Tomas dropped to the ground as she released her grip.
He scurried away scarcely believing the turn of events. “I love you Lizzie, I will follow you until I find a way to fix whatever has happened here tonight.”
Prologue 2 -
Eliza’s biting of her brother Tomas’ neck had profound effects on his physiology. It was not enough to ‘turn’ him into the monster she was to become but it nearly stopped his pineal gland in its tracks. Tomas would age but at a rate the giant sequoias in Northern California would envy. The link that Tomas shared with his family, not always willingly, intensified.
Over the years Tomas repeatedly sought ways to communicate with his sister, only to have every avenue closed to him. Eliza was stronger than him and would not allow the contact. But still he was aware of her presence and would follow her around the world hoping that one day she would once again sit with him and tell him bedtime stories. As for his clairvoyance? Who knows, maybe he does have ‘witches in his head.’
Prologue 3 -
I swear to God I had better be dead if this, my third journal turns up and I’m nowhere to be found. My first journal sits in my office at whatever remains of m
CHAPTER ONE -
“Can you see anything?” Tracy said nervously as she looked out over the expanse of the dead.
Travis stood on top of the truck roof, looking over the same vista as his mother. His grandmother’s house stood almost a half-mile away. A citadel under siege, thousands of zombies enshrouded the house. His dad, BT and Jen had made a plan to lure their enemy in and destroy as many as possible, hopefully taking with them their presumed leader Eliza. Travis stood stock-still but rage and anxiety coursed through his body. His father, Michael Talbot, had not figured on this many of the living dead assembling. He was going to need all the help he could get to make it away from that house.
All he could do was stay here with his mother Tracy, his sister Nicole, his brother (who he was convinced was an agent of the enemy) Justin, Henry the wonder bulldog and Tommy, who Travis had no classification system for. Tommy played the part of a smiling simpleton, but that was becoming a cover that was increasingly difficult for him to pull off.
“Can you see anything yet?” Tracy asked for the fifth time.
“I can see that they’re going to need help.” Travis answered back.
Tracy looked up the truck at her son who at 16 was rapidly and forcibly becoming a man. Tracy had known the moment Mike had made this shitty plan what his true intentions were. He had never been a good card player, his emotions always bled through. When he had held her tight and kissed her tenderly as the rest of the family went to the storm shelter out in the south fields, she’d known his plan was a one-way trip. She should have left an hour ago, like Mike had told her to, but she’d known that crap about meeting down the road was just that, ‘bullshit’. Could she sit here not helping and on top of that watch her beloved die? She felt there had to be something she could do, she saw it in Travis’ eyes. He was like a snapping pit bull on a thin leash. He would rush into the fray in seconds if she did anything more than nod at him. His sense of duty to the rest of the family though was what was keeping him in check. Mike fearing that Travis would attempt this rescue had made it abundantly clear that if anything were to happen to him that it fell on Travis’ shoulders to keep the family safe. As much as it pained Travis, he would not join the fight.
“The house is on fire.” Travis said flatly.
The end game was in play. Tracy knew her window of opportunity to escape was rapidly closing. “Help me up.” she told Travis as she climbed into the bed of the truck and onto the roof.
Hundreds of zombies had entered that house and still the brunt of them remained outside. With the house burning, Mike’s chance at a viable defense no matter how feeble, was over. There was nowhere for Mike, BT and Jen to go. Tracy wept. The look of pain and anguish on Travis’ stoic face ripped her heart. Nicole was in the backseat of the truck sobbing quietly, she couldn’t watch. Justin slept the sleep of the drugged. Henry stood guard over his dreams. Tommy had witnessed the assemblage of the abomination and then left to sit in the minivan by himself. Even through the closed windows they could hear him periodically wail to the heavens.
“Mom I can help.” Travis said through clenched teeth.
She almost relented. She’d drive. He’d shoot. They could get there. If they didn’t? Could she watch her son die? “No, we’re leaving, we’ll go to the place your dad said we’d meet and we’ll wait for an hour like he said.”
Travis’ eyes blazed. She could see the hurt a thin level below the surface. “What happens after an hour?” He asked her straightly.
“We go on.” Tracy said resignedly.
Tracy and Travis turned as they heard the door to the minivan open and slide shut. Tommy’s face was puffed up from his excessive crying. “They’re out of the house now.” He said in a monotone voice.
“How…how could you possibly know?” Tracy asked. “You can’t see them from there.”
Tracy was still looking at Tommy. Travis knew better than to question his abilities and had swung his vision back to the farm house trying to verify the new information. “I see them! He shouted.
So did Tracy, she didn’t know how, they appeared as clearly as if they were being viewed through a good pair of binoculars. Three lost souls in a miasma of death. The house burned so brightly it was difficult to look in its direction. She saw the futility of hope. There was no escape. She had crossed the line. She had stayed long enough to witness Mike’s death. A large piece of her would go with him.
“Mom, let me go?” Travis nearly begged.
“For what Travis? So I can watch you die too!” She snapped.
Travis turned away. His gaze fell upon Tommy who was looking off to the east and away from the house. Travis followed his line of sight. On the fringes of his vision he thought he saw something. A trail of whipped up snow made him realize he was not witnessing an illusion. Hope crept dangerously close, but he forced it down, for all he knew this was zombie reinforcements, although he couldn’t see the point. They wouldn’t even be able to get into the fight before it was over.
The air ripped open as .50 caliber chain gunfire erupted. Zombies fell in sheets. Tracy turned to the din. Three vehicles raced into the coalescent horde of zombies, two military vehicles, one a fortified troop transport and the other a humvee with a white Ford pick-up in between.
“Brendon?” Tracy asked.
Tommy wept silently and nodded.
Three feet of fire spewed from the turret mounted guns on each military vehicle. Zombies couldn’t die fast enough as bodies were shredded, decapitated, de-limbed, disemboweled and de-lifed. The carnage was on a scale none of them had seen, even at Little Turtle’s final stand, and yet it wouldn’t be enough. The zombies didn’t turn to face this new threat. They still pressed forward and toward the doomed trio. The staccato burst of Mike’s AR had been replaced with the much tamer 9mm, she knew he was running low on ammo. Hope was on the verge of breaking through but was being held back actively by reality.
“Come on Mike, don’t die on me now!” Tracy screamed, barely able to hear herself over the ear splitting bursts of large caliber rounds.
“Come on Brendon!” Travis shouted.
Nicole came out of the truck. “Brendon? Did you say Brendon?”
Travis pointed, but his sister at all of 4’ 11”, who would have a hard time making height at an amusement park to ride the teacups, could not see anything. He extended a hand down and lifted her clean up.
“Oh my God.” Nicole whispered.
The hummers were cutting swaths through the zombies. The carnage was beyond comprehension. The small caravan picked up speed as it approached the stranded castaways. The dire straits the trio was, in spurring the usurpers on.
“Are they going to make it mom?” Nicole asked.
Tracy wasn’t sure if she meant Mike, BT and Jen or Brendon and the Marines or just plain all of them. The flood of relief Tracy felt as Mike hopped into the back of Brendon’s truck nearly made her swoon with relief. Travis gripped her shoulder to keep her from pitching head first off their perch.
“Yeah!” Travis screamed a battle cry.
The caravan was pulling away from the destroyed house with its precious cargo.
“Someone fell out of the truck!” Nicole screamed.
The flood of relief turned into a dirge of dread for the watchers.
Nicole turned away from the scene, tortured and twisted by the drama unfolding before her.
“That’s Jen.” Travis said gravely.
“What is going on?” Tracy cried.
Travis jumped from the truck roof, running full speed towards the battle.
“Travis!” Tracy screamed. She shuddered at his response.
“Dad’s been shot!!” He said without turning or slowing down.
“Nicole! Tommy! Get in the truck! Fred, Esther get out of here!” Tracy bellowed as she alit from the truck roof.
Fred didn’t hesitate. He had his own family to take care of. Tracy swore though if she lost her family because of his, she would find him and even the score. Tracy had covered half the distance to the melee in the truck before she caught up with Travis.
“Get in!” She yelled into his ear.
He didn’t break stride. “I’m going to help!”
“So are we! Get in!”
He glanced over at her making sure this wasn’t a ruse, her expression was stone cold. He jumped into the bed of the truck. The fifty cals from this close were making the Ford shake. Tracy’s teeth hurt from the percussions. Travis rifle started to explode rounds. Zombies were caught in a crossfire. If she hadn’t hated them so much, Tracy thought, she might actually feel sorry for them.
“Fuck that.” She fishtailed the truck into couple of zombies on the fringe of the excitement. Spines shattered as the heavy truck crushed over one of the unlucky ones heads. She was running parallel to the military convoy, which was fighting desperately to get away from the entanglement. Tracy could barely control her gorge as the trucks began to inch closer and closer.
The End by Mark Tufo / Horror / Humor / Science Fiction / Mystery & Detective have rating 4 out of 5 / Based on32 votes