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Gone Too Soon
The thought of an apocalypse, I would have laughed if you mentioned the idea to me. That was over thirty years ago, when the world was normal. Back then I was a freshman; I was in love with life, doing what I enjoyed, crushing hard on a boy, and complaining over Geometry homework. Those were the good old days. Not many worries and no chaos.
The last day of school is supposed to be the highlight of the year, right? Well let me tell you; it was! The school day went by the same as any other year; Saying goodbye to the teachers and making ridiculous plans with my best friends. After all the plans were made and the goodbyes were said, I just took in the deepest breath of summer air I could.
The smell of charcoal, lighter fluid, and freshly cut grass just screamed summer vacation! I hopped inside my car and slowly drove home, admiring the beautiful day and jamming out to my country playlist. I was in such a joyful mod, because tonight would be my first night playing on the varsity softball team. So, I must have gotten lost in the words of Florida Georgia Line, because out of nowhere, something ran out from the cornfields and hit my car.
Screeching to a stop, I jumped out of the car to see what I had hit. I figured that it was a deer, because it left a ginormous dent on the hood of my car. But, taking a closer look at the hood of the car, a group of long black hairs were moving in summer breeze. Confusing and horror started to take over my tiny body. I looked over to observe the creature that I had hit, but it was gone! Nothing but a blood stain was left.
As fast as a strike of lightning, I was in my car and gone! I picked up my phone to call my dad, but there was no service. Once I reached my house, I flew inside!
¨ What's the big rush, Autumn? Excited for your first night on varsity?¨, my dad asked.
¨ Dad, you will never guess what happened when I was driving home! A big creature, like thing ran in front of my car!¨
¨ For God's sake, Autumn! We just got you that car!!¨
¨ I know, Dad, but just listen.¨ I explained the whole story with the passion as a narrator of a story book. The look on my father's face didn't seem very impressed, but I was still in too much shock to care. Once I told him about the dent, he speeds walked over to the window to take a look. With the way he sighed I knew there was an eye roll.
I started, ¨ I think the thing was a zombie, Dad. No other creature would have a nine-inch piece of long hair or create such a big dent on my car!¨
He gave me a dumbfounded look, surprised that such a hypothesis was even a thought in my head. I knew that I was in for a lecture, but my point still stands, and the wheels in my head were still turning and trying to figure out what it actually was!
My dad lightly grabbed my shoulder and said, ¨ If it wasn't such a big night for you, I would be chewing you out, horribly right now!¨
He walked away and laid out my softball uniform, then went upstairs to his room. I walked to the bathroom to get dressed, and my cat came in and walked between my feet. I bent down to pet her head, but my dad came back downstairs.
¨ I wouldn't pet her head if I was you. She scratched and bit my arm up pretty good!¨, my dad said while having one of those death stares at the cat.
I shook off the idea why and looked at the clock.
“ Oh no, I’m late!”
I flew out door, grabbing my softball bag it the process. Into my car I went and raced to the softball field. Since I didn’t have time to change at home, I changed inside the public restrooms by the concession stand. Luckily, I wasn’t the only one late! Alexis and Cora were outside of the door waiting to change as well.
“ You guys are late too?”, I said giggling.
Alexis responded with a growl in her voice, “ Why don’t you just shut up, Miss Perfect!”
Her and Cora went in and slammed the doors behind them. I felt puzzled. I have never been called that, because it’s not even close to being true, but also she has never raised her voice at me. Thinking that she was just mad that she’s not playing varsity, I brushed it off, put on my batting gloves, and went to the batting stages that Coach Best and Coach Phelps setup.
Time flew by, and before I knew it was time for the varsity game! We were going against our school rivals, OA-BCIG. I hated these guys; they always thought that they were better than us in every way. Well, they are going to have a rude awakening tonight! Coach Phelps broke me away with my thoughts.
“ You nervous, Autumn?”
“No, softball isn’t a sport I get nervous in.” I replied. I was hoping he wouldn’t ask me why, but I knew that he was going to any way.
“ Oh, and why is that?”
“ I know that I’m good at it. I mean I work hard with it and put in my time and effort, so success will come with it. Nerves just never do.”
I felt like he was very impressed by my words. Suddenly, we hear Alexis and Cora arguing. Cora starts swinging her arm at Alexis, but she catches her arm in her mouth and bites down...hard! Alexis starts to rip apart her flesh and Best tries to pry her from her sister. He couldn’t help Cora escape from Alexis’ jaws. So, I took one of the bats and hit her across the back of the head. With tears streaming down Cora’s face she pressed her face against my chest.
“ We need to get her to the emergency room! Someone, hurry, call 911, quick!”, I cried.
Best picked up Cora, but only to have her bite him on the side of his neck! He fell over, dead. The last thing I heard before running away was my team screaming for help, and the spraying of innocent blood onto the concrete.
I woke up, a month later, hidden in bushes. My whole world instantly became different. What should have been the best day of my life, became the day where I was left orphaned, alone, and devastated. I ran to my house, faster than what I thought my legs could go. Sadly, there was no soul alive. A place where I felt the safest, was now a blood covered ghost town. My dad...gone. My mother...gone. Everyone was gone! I broke down in tears.
How am I going to survive on my own? Where can I go? How could this have happened? The world may never know…. I may never know…
Over the sound of my sobs, I heard dark deep growl like noise. I wiped off my eyes with my sleeves and walked towards my bathroom. I turned the corner, then a big gray ball of fluff jumped at me. I immediatley ducked! My heart was racing; just beating faster than a rabbit can run.
I was facing towards the wall. It took me awhile to build up the courage to turn around.
I thought to myself, “ Is this the end? Will I ever see the light of day again?”
I started to turn to my left, slowly making an effort to face the creature that tried to attack me. Finally, I turned around,and there was my cat. I quickly stood back up, wiping the sweat from my brow, and tried to calm her down.
“Here kitty, kitty. Come to momma!”
What I yearned in return was a long deep growl with a hiss. She came at me again, and-out of reaction- I grabbed a frying pan nearby and smacked her. I instantly dropped the pan and covered my mouth. Of course I felt bad, but that was not how MY cat acted!
I examined her and she had white foam coming from her mouth, like she had rabies. I then put two and two together. Alexis had a cat scratch from her cat, and my dad had a scratch also!
“Cats caused this! They carried around some type of infection!”
I started to look around my kitchen for some clues of struggle that could have came from my family. I noticed pots and pans weren’t inside the cupboards, the fridge was wide open, and glass was all over the floor from the busted window. I started to tear up knowing that my childhood home was destroyed and my family was either dead, or left me behind . I put my sweaty, gross back against the wall-where all of my heights have been recorded ever since I was there - and just let my memories roll right back into my head. The memories of my parents, grandparents, and especially my brother and sister made me smile.
After wiping away my tears, I walked into the bathroom to clean myself up. I started the sinks water; nothing but rusty water sprayed from the pipes. It was almost as if the house had been vacant for decades.
“But, it’s only been a couple hours!” I said to myself.
Looking up towards the mirror above the sink, I made I contact with myself… my forty-five year old self!
“This can’t be happening?! It just can’t be!”
For the first time in my life I felt alone, old, and cursed! Since then, I have been trying to find survivors and the reason for the disease that killed off my family and friends! I’ve lived this far, and nothing will stop me now to get the answers I deserve!