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In the Not So Distant Future
In the not so distant future, the year 2037, a deadly virus called Solanum swept across the globe, infecting millions, and killing even more. Here’s the estimated numbers: Infected, 17,942,754 Dead, 418,976,043. Impossible? Hardly.
You see, when you’re infected, it begins with a high fever of about 99 degrees to 103 degrees. After that, there’s the chills, the dementia, numbing of the extremities, complete paralysis of the lower body, coma, and finally heart stoppage. Zero brain activity. But here comes the catch. They didn’t stay dead. Reanimation occurred about 4 hours after death. They come back as mindless ghouls, unkillable, unless the brain is destroyed. They eat human flesh, and moan constantly when they find it. These “zombies” exist only for one thing. To feed.
I was just turning 25 when Patient Zero became infected, at my birthday party, in fact. I was hanging around outside with my friends Jeff and Joey, having a smoke, when we heard screams coming from inside. My friend, Trevor had died.
I dialed 9-1-1, and told the ambulance where to go. As we heard the sirens coming, about 15 minutes later, we carried Trevor outside and into the ambulance. Too bad we didn’t know we had just doomed hundreds of millions of people.
The next day on the news, I heard a story about an ambulance that had crashed, last night. The reporter said that the bodies of the driver and the doctor had been found with human bite marks all over them. Trevor was nowhere to be seen. The employees died later at the hospital, and infected surgeons, nurses, and other patients. Before anyone had time to think, the whole hospital was infected. Two months later, New York City. Another few months and Los Angeles was forsaken. By the end of the year, the only safe place in the United States was Columbus, Ohio. Well, crap.
Day 397: I was sitting near the fortified gate of the Columbus stronghold, when a small group of zombies came walking, no, shambling, towards us guards. I calmly picked up my M1 Carbine semiautomatic rifle, and picked them off rapidly, each pull of the trigger killing one. This happened a lot, as Columbus used to be a city full of people. It’s a ghost town now.
Day 409: Jeff and I were walking down the main road when the alarm was sounded. We were under attack! Not by zombies, though. Raiders, brigands, whatever you want to call them. They are a group of humans who ride around destroying any remaining civilization. They burn the men, rape the women, and enslave the children. We rushed to the main gate, rifles at the ready, picking them off one by one. In about an hour, we had pushed them away, but at the cost of 11 of our soldiers.
Day 432: Ryan, one of my friends, died today. He was on a patrol when a horde of zombies swarmed on him and ripped him apart. We found his arm, head, and a toe while scouting in the woods.
Day 434: Quis homo dissipabit. This morning while in the city, I saw a raider eating another human. I shot him in the chest, and it killed him. This was no zombie, and it was no zombie attack. This was cannibalism.
Day 449: The town doctor died today, completely devoured by a horde of ravenous zombies. Now, since he was the only doctor here, pneumonia could be as dangerous as a zombie.
Day 462: Our civilization is rapidly deteriorating. People die every other day, and the population is down to 73 people. I have, after a lot of thought, decided to leave the village. I will need to pack up supplies, make a list, and plan my route, so I will leave in about 10 days.
Day 472: I am leaving now. It is 1:00 A.M. and I am at the gate. Everyone is asleep, and it’s the perfect time to leave. I am leaving my typewriter here, and I will have to record my journey by hand. I am opening the gates, going into the unknown, into the outside world, the world… of the dead.
Day 1 out of the village. I am heading across the sea to Europe, where, hopefully, the infection has not struck. I will record my journey in this journal, and, hopefully when the world is back to normal, someone will find it and say, “Hey, someone survived.” And, someone did.
Day 4 in the outside world: I was hunting in the woods when I came across a zombie. This was nothing special because there were zombies all over the place. The special thing was that this was Patient Zero. My old friend Trevor. I did what I would do in any normal zombie encounter; I shot its head with my M1 Carbine. It was only after I had disposed of it that I saw who it was. But living in a world like this hardens you. Makes you tough. I no longer feel sad for friends or family that are lost to the infection. It makes you sick, what this virus has done to the world.
Day 8: I saw a raider camp today. It was full of them. Not raiders, zombies. They had ambushed the raiders in the night, and completely destroyed the camp. There were a few zombies wearing raider uniforms, but most of them were wearing normal, everyday citizen clothes. I took a wide path around the camp. Better to stay out of a potentially deadly situation than waste unnecessary ammo.
Day 9: I found a typewriter and a stack of typing paper out in a log cabin today. I will no longer have to hand-write all of my entries, thank god.
Day 9, later: I have decided to stay in the cabin for a while, because it is in an ideal spot to find food, and it’s also near a spring where I can get water.
Day 24: I am leaving the cabin now. I held out pretty well in it, with just a few small groups of zombies coming along every once in a while, but I have to keep moving. I have to get to another country where, hopefully, it’s not like America. I have to get away from all this chaos.
Day 26: I am trying to conserve ammo as best I can, but I think that, at this rate, I will soon run out. Once I do, I’ll be vulnerable to everything. Zombies, raiders, they will spell doom for me.
Day 30: I found a M1 Garand semiautomatic rifle today, which I have already decided is way better than my Carbine. It has about 150 rounds of ammo, so I am going to keep my Carbine with me anyway.
Day 31: I found another survivor today. I don’t know her name because she doesn’t remember it. I don’t remember my name either. No one remembers names anymore, after so long fighting to survive. We don’t have time for names.
Day 39: My partner was bitten today while searching for food. She was infected, so I left her. But she followed me and told me to shoot her in the head. She would rather have died than become one of them. Who wouldn’t? So I did what she told me to do. I felt like a horrible, evil person while I did it, though. I hate the world, what its done to me, what its done to everyone, everything.
Day 43: I finally made it to the ocean today, but the only boat is a raider camp. I’ll have to find a different boat.
Day 45: After 2 days of walking along the shore, I have found another boat, which I can use to sail to Europe. I’m so close, yet so far.
Day 1 on the boat: I set out to Europe today. My destination will be the U.K., and I think I will be there in about a month.
Day 36 on the boat: I made it to my destination today. I will need to journey farther inland before I can reach London.
Day 40: I think I am near London now, and I have seen no zombies yet, which is good.
Day 43: I made it to London today. I left though. It was completely burned to the ground. The only thing left was rubble and the blackened skeletons of the citizens who were burned alive in that great city which had become a death trap.
Day 50: I saw something horrible today. I came upon a huge swarm of zombies, at least 5,000 of them. I ran from them as fast as I could. What else could I have done?
Day 54: Today I found a blood-splattered newspaper with the headline “Over 60% of the United Kingdom Now Infected”. It was dated about 3 years ago. This country has been infected longer than the U.S.
Day 54, later: There are too many zombies here. Around every corner there is a few of them, at least. I read the rest of the newspaper, and I learned that every continent on Earth was completely infected. North America was the last to go.
Day 56: I have had enough of this world. It is too crazy for me to be on it anymore. It is like this is some cruel punishment for something I did before. It’s like torture. I have decided I am going to kill myself. It is a hard decision, but one I have to make if I am going to escape these things. This will be my last entry. I am leaving now.