Book of the Apocalypse

March 9, 2011
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Though it was not discovered until years after, the apocalypse began in the year 2008 A.D. Originating at a Biochemical lab in Berlin, scientists were trying to create a breed of super-humans with amazing strength, speed, and intelligence; they succeeded, raising children with the strength of full grown men. But in the year 2012 the children, who were near the age of 5, began to lose higher brain functions: speed, motor control, etc. When further studied it was found that all the children were mutating at an alarming rate. Then, exactly one hour after losing brain functions, their hearts stopped; they were dead.
When the medical staff rushed in to see what was wrong, the bodies of the children rose up and launched themselves at the doctors and nurses. They were all downed, scratched and bitten until their hearts stopped. The guards rushed in soon after, although they were too late to save anyone. Yet as soon as the guards entered the room the doctors and nurses launched themselves at the guards with a cannibalistic rage. They were all infected; they all escaped. The day; December 21, 2012

Johnathon grabbed the shotgun shells and started loading the gun. The gun was pure black, modified so it could hold 12 shells at a time. He picked up the sling and attached it to the gun, slinging it over his shoulder. It seemed out of place with the clothes he wore; he had worn jeans, a dirty shirt and new boots. Even though the gun clashed he bore it with a great familiarity that suggested he had used it much in his 29 years of life. He then grabbed both pistols and strapped them to both hips; the cold familiar weight gave him a measure of comfort. After they were securely strapped to his satisfaction he grabbed his .30/06 semi-automatic rifle and strapped it next to the shotgun; he was ready to leave the city.

He walked to a door down the hall, “Hey, are you two ready to leave yet, or are you going to spend the whole morning in there?” He leaned against the wall pulling out a pack of cigarettes. He lit one with a flick of a lighter; he drew in a big long breath and sighed audibly.

A soft feminine voice shouted from the other side of the wall, “Almost!”

“Well hurry up, we can’t stay here for too much longer.” He puffed a bit of smoke out of his lips.

Another voice, also feminine but loud and pushy; “Yeah, yeah, we got it.”

The door opened and Jen walked out; she was about 26, had long brunette hair, brown eyes, and was a little shorter than him. She had a beautifully made sword on her back, a Katana. After her came Amy, same height as Jen, short blonde hair, and worn clothes; she carried a flamethrower on her back. He cleared his throat, “Alright, let’s get going.”

They walked into a front room full of dusty old furniture. They weaved their way through the room until they reached the door. Johnathon opened a small panel on the door, looking out to see if any of them were near; none were. “It’s clear,” a soft whisper, “let’s go.” He opened the door quietly and dashed outside, quickly pressing his back to the wall. He wielded his shotgun; the others were readying their weapons as well. The sun was rising into the sky, dropping bright hot rays onto the barren scorched earth. All three walked down the asphalt road, waves of heat hovering above the flat surface.
Johnathon took the point, Jen took rear, and Amy was in the middle; the sound of their footsteps was the only noise that broke the silent air of the city. As they crept along, the three of them peered into every shadow, every corner, to make sure it was safe to continue; hours passed in this manner until they decided to break to eat.
It’s hot outside today; and its days like these that make me wish we still had air conditioning. A nice cold beer or soda would be heavenly, but all that has changed; now we are lucky to find anything to drink at all. He rubbed his eyes and stretched his muscles, trying to massage the aches and pains away.
Amy was making their quick and tasteless lunches while Jen and Johnathon kept watch. Amy was the first to speak. “It’s been quiet today, hasn’t it?” She passed a can of beans to Johnathon who was crouching near her; Jen came and grabbed one as well.
They ate quietly for a stretch of minutes, Jen cleared here throat. “Yeah, very quiet; something is wrong. They aren’t acting like usual.” She shoveled the last of the runny beans into her mouth and tossed her empty can into the miniature compactor; it would crush any material to small manageable sizes for easy transportation and eventually to be recycled. The other two followed suit when they finished. Amy grabbed the small metal pellets and placed them in a small leather pouch filled with similar pellets. Amy cleaned what little mess there was, they fell into formation, and continued on their way.
They went on until the sun started to lower and day was at an end, then they stopped their traveling. They set camp in an old hotel, three stories; choosing an employee lounge in the middle of the floor. With only one door it was easily defendable. The room was small, with a few sinks, a couch, two tables, and a few old vending machines. Johnathon took the first watch; he sat in a chair with his shotgun in his lap facing the door. Hours passed in an uneasy peace with no interruptions. His eyes began to droop, his shift was over. He went to wake up Jen; Amy was snoring nearby, she still hadn’t learned how to sleep lightly and quietly. Amy reminded him of a younger sister even though he never had one; he would do anything to protect her.
Amy had been with him and Jen for about a month, Jen for two. When they had first appeared 9 weeks earlier, he had immediately tried to find people to keep around him. But over the course of the first week most people had been turned, he had only been able to find Jen. They traveled for a little under a month through California until they got to ------, when they got there they found one survivor, Amy. It had been her 17th birthday, and she had been with them ever since.
Jen opened her eyes, “You awake?”
Johnathon shook his head and pulled himself out of his reverie. “Just thinking about the past.”
He sat next to her and she propped herself onto one elbow. “Amy is still a child at heart Johnathon; that she must live through the world in this day of age...” She sighed, “What is it coming to?”
Johnathon lay onto his back. “It’s the end of the world. We’re all at war with them and it’s ending life on earth.”
Jen stared into his eyes, they kept their gazes locked. A blush spread across her cheeks and she stood up. “I’ll go keep watch.” She walked over to the door and kept a silent vigilance while Johnathon went to sleep. She held her stomach, remembering that day one month ago, three days before finding Amy.

Jen grabbed an apple out of the basket, biting large chunks out of it. The sweet juices fell from her lips like a waterfall from a cliffs edge. Johnathon walked in from the bathroom.
“Better go while you can, the water is starting to run out.”
She took another bit, “Okay.”
She went to the bathroom and came back out. Johnathon was sitting on a chair peeling an orange over a garbage can.
“We need to get some weapons that we can use to defend ourselves. We might not get so lucky next time we run into one of them.” He took a bite out of the orange, looking forlornly at her.
She bit her tongue lightly as she thought for a moment. “We passed a Cabela’s when we got here, think they have guns left?”
Johnathon took another bite, “Maybe.” He tossed the remains of his orange in the garbage.
“We need to go, your rifle is not enough to protect us; especially with you being such a lousy shot. Plus, you’re almost out of bullets.”
Johnathon sighed, “I admit that we should have more ammo and weapons, but I am not a horrible shot. My aim is great, the gun is just misaligned, that’s all.”
Jen just shook her head, “Whatever. Since it’s going to be daylight for few hours, let’s go now before the sun goes down.”
He stood and wiped his hands on his pants. “Alright, let’s go.”
They left the apartment and walked out the front door of the building. They walked down the street at a brisk walk, casting looks left and right every couple of seconds as they went. Filth and dirt filled the gutters over a foot high; stench rose and assailed the nostrils. Jen sniffed loudly, “Stinks…”
Johnathon nodded in agreement, letting his silence answer her better than any words. A turnoff appeared at their right seemingly out of nowhere. “Let’s get going.”

Jen led the way, steadily going faster and faster until she was at a slow jog a tad faster than before. They jogged down the parking lot, emptied and abandoned cars littered in various parking stalls. They stopped at the front of Cabela’s; the doors were ajar and glass was littered everywhere. Johnathon raised his gun and crept carefully in the doorway. Light shone in through the skylights, filtering through the air onto dust blanketed jackets, coats, and other items.
Light shone in through the skylights, filtering down old air onto dust blanketed jackets, pants, and other items. Across the room they could see the fishing and hunting section of the store. Creeping quietly the only sound heard was the occasional squeak from their shoes on the floor. They arrived at the counter where the pistols were stored. The glass was shattered and all weapons were gone.
Jen looked over at him, “They’re all gone.”
Johnathon just stood just stood thinking, he looked up. “I have an idea. Do you think that they have any stored in the back?”
Jen contemplated for a moment, “They might.”
“Should we go look?”
They opened a sturdy wooden door and walked into the back room. A computer sat on a desk, a cup of coffee sitting congealed next to it gave a disgusting smell off into the air. Jen sniffed loudly. “Stinks.”
“A lot.”
A small door was set into a corner of the room with a sign that read NO ENTRY BEYOND THIS POINT! A picture of a beautiful woman hung on the wall, he whistled appreciatively, “Cute.”

Jen looked at him in disgust. “You sick pervert! What are you, a pedophile?!”
Johnathon looked closer; the light revealed that it was actually a little boy with a sign that promoted workers comp. “No! I thought it was–I thought it–it was the light!”
She giggled under her breath, “Yeah, yeah, I know.”
He stood with embarrassment plastered all over his face. She opened the door with a laugh and they went into the back room. It was as dark as a moonless night, the only light coming faintly from the front door. They pulled out flashlights, the beams illuminating the large storage shelves. Boxes of every shape and size littered every available space; all boxes were opened and strewn.
Jen took in the scene with practiced disappointment. “Looks like someone got here before us.”
“Think there’s anything left?”
“There might be; let’s check.”
They methodically rifled through boxes, some were empty while others had wrappers and cardboard cases in them. Jen called out, “Johnathon, I found something.” Johnathon trotted over to where she was bending over a large box; she was pulling out large pieces of Styrofoam. She wrestled out a long thin black box; about 3’ long and 6” thick. It was inlaid with silver designs that were spiraling and swirling. She fumbled with the clasp for a few seconds before finally prying it open. Lying strapped on soft velvet, were two beautifully crafted Katana’s; the blades were so sharp they looked like they could cut you just by looking at them.
She unhooked one and held it cradled in her arms. Johnathon snorted, “Not very practical.”
Jen just stared daggers at him, “They are the most beautiful things I have ever seen. I’m taking them.”
Johnathon looked at her, having those would not be as effective as guns. “Jen, please reconsider looking for another weapon. Those won’t be of any use to either of us at any time.”
She kept staring at the sword, “I’m keeping them.”

“Johnathon, I’m keeping them!”
He just mumbled inaudibly. “Fine, keep them then; but I’m looking for something useful and not just pretty.”
He looked on different shelves, opening a box here, tossing a box there. He looked until he found a box that felt a bit heavier than the others. He opened it, and found a jet black shotgun sitting there. He picked it up, it was perfect. He slung it onto his back next to his rifle and kept looking. Jen looked at him for a moment before turning back to her swords. He looked for a while longer before giving up.
“Jen, we’ve found all that we can here; let’s get going.”
She stood up stretching her arms, “Alright, but have you checked the safe?”
“Safe, what safe?”
She pointed over to the area next to the door. “There’s a safe there, think we should take a look?”
He sauntered over to the safe and turned its stainless steel wheel, it opened silently. The safe was probably for dangerous weapons and/or custom orders. Inside were cases of bullets, some cleaning supplies, and two pistols. He picked up the pistols; they were silver semi-automatic and black grips. Lying next to the guns were leather holsters with easy access. He took them and clipped them to his belt, inserting the pistols after.
“Jen, I’m ready to go,” Johnathon said quietly.
She looked out the door towards the front of the store; she had a worried expression on her face. “Johnathon, the sun’s going down.”
“Hurried over to the doorway, she was right. He thought quickly, “We should probably stay here then, we do NOT want to get caught where they can get us.”
She closed the door to the main part of the store and he closed the door to the warehouse; they locked the doors. Jen grabbed the coffee and dropped it in the sink, and walked over to the table and sat. Johnathon sat next to her, she leaned her head on his shoulder. He stiffened for a moment before relaxing again.
She whispered softly, “Johnathon, do you think they will ever be destroyed.”
“Who, the zombies? Yes they will be, one day.” He looked down at her face and he realized that he loved her.
She looked up at him and their gazes locked. He leaned in, she leaned in, and they kissed. Johnathon marveled that he could feel the way he was felling at a simple kiss. That night was the best night of his life.

A sound brought her out of her reverie, it was the noise of dozens of shuffling feet and furniture being tipped over; they had come. She quickly rushed over to Johnathon and Amy and nudged them both awake. Johnathon woke easily and quickly grabbed his weapons, he knew what to do. Amy was harder to rouse, but once she was she instinctively knew what was happening; maybe she would get the hang of it. Amy suited up her flamethrower and Jen went and drew both her Katana’s. The door shook, the hinges bent and cracks racing down the doors surface. Johnathon pumped his shotgun, the ominous sound bring them to full readiness. The door shook again and one of the three hinges snapped, falling off the frame. Amy flipped a switch on her pack and held the nozzle at the ready. Then another hit and the door blasted inward, flying past their heads. The zombies came flying in like ravenous dogs fighting for a piece of the only meat in sight. All thought left that moment, only instinct remained.

Johnathon fired his shotgun time after time, felling many zombies. Jen cut down more than she could count. Blood was dripped from her blade; but not red blood, blood that was so black that it was a rot that was spreading down the blade reaching to her. She ignored it and continued cutting down any rotten form that had the ill fortune of stepping in front of her. Minutes passed, their breathing became ragged and hard. Sweat streamed down their faces from the effort of repulsing the zombies. They just kept coming; there must have been hundreds of them. Blood began running down Johnathon’s shoulder from the continued friction and pressure of the butt of the gun. He retreated to reload his gun and Amy widened her range to compensate for him. He finished reloading and barreled back in.

He was immediately knocked off his feet by an enormous 7’ mass of flesh. Amy and Jen were caught off guard and crashed to the ground. They were quickly separated from their weapons and hands began to surround them. Johnathon tried to get up but the large thing got in his way. He moved to grab his pistol with his left hand and the zombie crushed his left arm. The arm was immediately separated and he screamed in pain. The zombie, a man he now uselessly realized, bent down and bit him in the shoulder. He felt his veins run cold and red hot pain intruded throughout his body. His screams escalated as did the two women’s.

Johnathon grabbed his other pistol and shot the zombie over and over in the head. It slumped onto the ground next to him and he stood up shakily. He looked down at his left stump and felt anger rising. He heard cries for help as Amy and Jen were dragged out of the room. He charged, shooting the zombies that got in his way. He got into the hall and looked around, Amy was being dragged to his left and Jen to his right. But since he only had one arm he could only save one. He looked back and forth; he just couldn’t decide which to save. No, no, NO! Why is this happening? He thought.

Amy cried out, he could barely discern her words. “Johnathon, help Jen, help Jen!”

Jen yelled loudly, “Save Amy!”

Amy cried even louder, her pain making him want to save her. “No, not me; save Jen Johnathon, I know you love her. You need to save her, not me. Besides she’s pregnant!”

Johnathon felt his heart stop; Jen, pregnant? That wasn’t possible, it couldn’t be possible. He saw Jen and immediately knew that it was true. He knew what he needed to do. He charged down the hall to the right, all the while trying to drown out the voice of Amy’s cries of pain and anguish. He shot down the zombies surrounding Jen and kicked them out of his way. He looked back over his shoulder quickly, Amy’s head was rolling down the floor; she was dead. He choked down tears and turned back to Jen. Her face was badly mutilated, her left leg gone and the left side of her torso brutally torn to shreds. He picked her into his arms gently, her blood seeping onto him.

“So Johnathon how is it?” Her voice was lower than a whisper. He stayed silent. “That bad huh?” She coughed, blood spurting out her open mouth; she breathed with obvious effort.

He looked down at her, “Is it true, are we really having a baby?” She nodded her head. “Why didn’t you tell me? Why did you keep it from me?”

“I only found out yesterday, Amy was with me that’s how she knew. I was going to tell you tomorrow but I guess that isn’t going to happen, is it?” She coughed and more blood sprayed onto her.

“Don’t talk, save your strength.” Johnathon felt his tears fall off his face and onto her face.

She tried to smile, “Don’t cry, I’ll be alright.”

“Yeah, you will.” He bit his lower lip to keep the sobs from coming.

“It’s alright Johnathon, because I lov—lo…” Her voice fell to a low silence and she breathed out for the last time.

Johnathon lifted his head to the sky and screamed a scream so full of despair and sorrow that it would pull any being into a state of deep dark depression. Tears cascaded down his face, falling to the ground in never ending waves. “Why? Why did you have to die?” He cradled her in his arms until he couldn’t cry any more tears. He stood up, gently setting Jen to the ground.

“Jen, the world will become something that you can be safe in; something safe from fear and hate, violence and sorrow. I promise you this; I will change the world, for you…” He limped away from her, from the building, from his past life.

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