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RPG Left 4 Dead: Breaking Point

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Chris smiled at the old man sitting at the table in the bar and restaurant area of the ship. "One appletini with a dash of salt, right? Here you go." He sat the exorbently priced drink down in front of him, and the man nodded his thanks. Turning, Chris looked around to see that more customers had walked into the bar. "Hi there!" he called. "One of our servers will be right with you." He turned away from them, to see if anyone would grab the new customers. Another one of the servers grabbed a tray and made her way over to them. Chris sighed in relief. He was already rushing around to serve his customers, and his desserts were taking forever to get out to the dining room.

A low rumble of thunder sounded across the ship, rattling cups and silverware. "Oh dear..." Chris commented. The ship rocked gently on the waves and wind of the Illinois river, and he could hear the dull roar of pounding rain on the hull. A sudden storm had arisen, though it was nothing new. The ship wasn't acting any differently than during any previous storm, so there wasn't any reason to be concerned about it.

"Hey, Chris! Go on break!" The manager yelled out at him from the kitchen. Chris went around his tables, asking them if there was anything he could get for them before he went on break. After he was satisfied, he clocked out and walked out into the casino hall. The large plated glass skylight above him was dark with the ominous storm overhead. He sighed and made his way over to the coat room to grab his own. He'd known that there might be rain today, so he'd brought his own today. But, he hadn't been expecting this kind of weather. The coat checker smiled as he approached. The kid had a crush on Chris, and the kid was cute, so he didn't mind flirting a little. "What's up, dude?"

"Bored out of my mind." he responded. "Did you hear about that disease that makes people rabid? I hear it's out of control on the east coast."

"Yeah, I did. Thankfully it's just on the east coast."

"Yeah, but it's creeping this way."

"I'm sure that CEDA or the government will warn us and get us out of here before we're in danger." The coat boy handed Chris his coat, and he smiled at the kid. "Thanks. I'm going out for a smoke. Hopefully I won't drown while I'm out there."

"Good luck with keeping the thing lit."

"Yeah, right." Chris laughed as he walked away. He walked outside into the heavy rain, and then out to his car. As he pulled his pack of smokes from the center console of his cherry red '87 Firebird, he sighed. Thirty minutes wasn't really long enough to get something to eat, and even with his employee discount on food it was still pricy. He put his cigarette in his mouth and lit up. Taking a deep drag, he leaned back into his seat and cracked his window just enough to let the smoke out. He watched the storm through his windows, though to no avail. The rain was coming down far too hard for him to be able to see anything. Lightning flashed and thunder roared as he sat in his car. It didn't bother him, he was quite content to simply be in his car while the storm raged on. It was an unnaturally warm day, especially for late October going into November. To Chris, it was just a shame he couldn't play in the rain and he had to work instead. Eventually, he finished his smoke and opened his car door to head back inside. Looking over to the Par-A-Dice Hotel, he could see that power was flickering on and off. Thankfully, the ship had its own back up generators so power wouldn't be an issue, at least in the ship.

The rain still wasn't letting up as he walked back to the ship and it was making him worry some about flooding around town. The parking lot where his baby was would be okay, but there were a lot of low lying areas around town that didn't have the best drainage systems and were prone to flooding when it rained like it was. Unfortunately, that included the roads leading to his apartment complex on the complete opposite side of town near Grand Prairie Mall.

Another thought flashed through his mind about his mother. She'd been gone from this world for three years, but her grave was in Springdale Cemetery, and the last time there had been torrential rain a large part of the backside of the cemetery had slid down the slope that the cemetery was on into the rather large pond at the bottom. Thankfully, his mother hadn't been one of the bodies that had been buried in the ground that had slid away and into the pond. Hopefully, that terrible ordeal wouldn't happen again.

He heard the motor of a powerboat heading down the river, but from where he was he couldn't see it.

A boat... on the river with the weather like it was? How odd.

Shaking his head at the stupidity of the mystery boater, he walked back onto the ship's gangplank and into the ship at large. He handed his soaked coat back to the coat boy and headed back across the casino hall to get back to work. The ship suddenly pitched up, nearly knocking him off his feet. There were many screams and surprised yelps from many of the people in the boat, but the ship settled as quickly as it had bucked. Chris smiled, and chuckled. It really was those little surprises and quirks about working on a boat that made it interesting.

A woman that looked rather ill stood up from the floor and quickly made her way past Chris to the exit of the ship, presumably because the sudden rocking of the ship had made her seasick and unnerved. Shrugging, he continued on and clocked back into work. Outside, he could still hear the powerboat's motor.

[i]Did they decide to just sit out there or something?[/i] Chris thought to himself as he started busing off various tables in order to clean up the bar. A sudden grinding noise and an ear splitting shriek of metal being shorn away from itself reverberated through the ship as it vibrated from the force if the impact.

"What the hell was that?" Chris called out, and then started going around making sure his customers and coworkers were alright. Many people were leaving, not comfortable being on the ship any longer.

Going back to work cleaning tables, Chris suddenly heard a deafening scream and people came running back into the ship, panicking wildly and fleeing from something just outside of the ship.

"What's going on? What happened?" Chris looked on into the Casino, if only to be knocked down by a woman trying to flee past him. Screams filled the air, and people were running everywhere. "What the hell is going on?" Chris asked from his new vantage point on the floor.

A primal roar brought his attention to the gangplank entrance, and he could see several people beating against the reinforced plated glass of the doors. They were bleeding from their eyes, ears, and mouths, and their eyes were a sickly yellow color. He could see that behind them there were several people being ripped apart by more crazies. Chris stared in disbelief with his eyes wide, that is, until the glass began to crack. Behind him, tables were overturned and various drinks and food spilled everywhere, making the floor slippery and giving him difficulty as he tried to stand on his own two feet. The crazies poured into the ship, attacking anyone and anything that moved. Chris managed to stand, and the ship bucked in the storm once more, even more violently than before. The gangplank snapped off of the ship, letting rain and wind inside. People were tossed in every direction, and the boat was filled with the screams of people. Blood spattered everywhere as the insane and frenzied people continued their rampage.

Looking around, Chris grabbed a china plate from the floor just as a roar filled with his ears. He raised the plate to smash it against one of the crazies and they fell backwards away from him.

He scrambled to get away, and then up a flight of stairs next to the entrance into the bar. Looking around for some means of getting away, he took off down the corridor away from the madness below. Up was the only way to go, and thankfully sleeping with one of the janitors allowed him some knowledge of how to get topside. He was a good gymnast, and he could probably make a jump onto whatever was left of the gangplank to get away. With one glance back over his shoulder, he could see people being brutally beaten and shredded by the rabid humans.

With startling clarity, Christopher came to a realization.

The virus... It was here. Green Flu had come to Peoria. Edited by Inuyasha Fandom

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[font=times new roman, times, serif]The doctor could feel the cold air that came with the storm permeating its way through the cheap window of the motel as he woke up to a gloomy Monday morning. [i]This has to be the worst place on the planet.[/i] Alejandro thought to himself as he sat up and instinctively reached for the glass half filled with rum and coke. He nursed it as he turned on the television.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??â?¦[b][i]Weâ??re getting reports of rather nasty weather which has led some people to get quite violent.[/i][/b]â? The newscaster reported as the thunder clapped and rattled the windowpane; Santiago shrugged it off as he finished the morning dose of poison and began getting dressed. He whistled a tune he had heard while clubbing the night away back home in South Beach while checking himself out in the mirror. The Latino was decked out in the average fair of dark semi casual clothing as he pulled on his Chucks smelling of expensive cologne and the finest rum on his breath; thatâ??s when his eyes fell onto the photo of his friend, which reminded him why he was here in the first place. Stacey Greenwood, the 22 year old university student who confidently managed to stride past her peers in her studies. Her grey blue eyes, slim figure topped with brunette hair and a smile that would put Athena to shame. Yet deep down, she struggled with her disability. She hated having to ask her grandfather to chaperone her around the small town, she could feel the other locals glaring at her all the time and she couldnâ??t live with it.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Por eso que estoy aquí, mi amiga. At least youâ??ve got someone whoâ??s got your back.[/i][/b]â? Alejandro said as he took the photo from the mirror and placed it into his jacket. He was on his way out when he heard an almost bloodcurdling scream come from the patio area of the cheap motel he had crashed out at for almost a month now. He unconsciously reached for his gun which he left, fully assembled, underneath the dinning table and threw his badge on around his neck. He ripped the door off the hinges and began making sweeps down the patio area.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Miami-Dade police, is everything alright?![/i][/b]â? Santiago hollered, but in the back of his mind he felt a bit awkward, since he had no jurisdiction outside of his hometown. Alejandro made his way to the source of the scream, but what he saw before him imbued a state of disbelief upon his conscious. It was a man eating a woman; the perpetrator had dug through the victimâ??s abdominal cavity and was working into the womanâ??s intestine when the cannibal noticed the police officer with an abashed look upon his face. [i]Wellâ?¦ Thatâ??s definitely new, never heard of human as a local delicacyâ?¦ [/i]Santiago thought as he cleared his throat to speak. â??[b][i]Sir, that woman is obviously injured let me hel---[/i][/b]â?? Ali couldnâ??t finish his statement as the crazed man lunged at him, the doctor backed away, and pulled the trigger.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] With a crack that was almost drowned out by another thunderclap, the deranged man fell to the ground with a bullet between the eyes. [i]Did I justâ?¦ ¿Qué demonios he hecho? [/i]The doctor panicked as his inner scientist wanted to stay and begin an autopsy on his victim and the victim of his victim but his mind snapped when he heard more howling that wasnâ??t the neighbourhood dogs. [i]Miss Greenwood. Sheâ??s my main concern right now.[/i] Alejandro thought as he began running away from his crime scene and out of range of the motel, his mobile phone began to ring and he picked up almost immediately.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]This is Santiago.[/i][/b]â? Alejandro began as he heard chaos on the other end of the line, when a familiar voice broke through the frenzied alarm of madness. â??[b][i]Ali! My grandfather isnâ??t picking up the phone and I can hear them outside, itâ??s getting louder. Iâ??mâ?¦ Help me. Please.[/i][/b]â? It was his only friend in the middle of nowhere and she was terrified. â??[b][i]Stacey, itâ??s alright, voy a por ti. Stay in your room and lock the door.[/i][/b]â? Alejandro commanded as he looked behind him while hanging up his phone, there was a hoarde slowly forming behind him as a rush of adrenaline flooded his veins and the Latino began to run faster through the pouring torrents.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]Yep, this is [b]definitely [/b]the worst place on Earth. [/i][/font]

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Dahlia looked out from her office windows at Central High into the furious storm outside. It was really coming down out there. A knock on her office brought her attention back indoors.

"Come in." She called, and stood from her desk. A student walked in, looking visibly pale. He was a freshman, and rather scrawny looking. He'd come in a few times before. "I don't feel so good, Miss Severest."

"You don't look good either. Why did you come to school? You should be home resting." She ushered the teenager to sit down. He took a deep breath. "I'm gonna puke..."

Quickly, Dahlia placed a trash can in front of him, and he hurled up the remains of his breakfast. "Poor dear..." She started rubbing his back, taking pity on the child. He felt quite warm, indicating he was feverish. "Let me call your parents to come get you."

"I was feeling fine until I got to school." the student responded, sounding like he was slightly out of it. He then slumped over and promptly passed out.

"Oh. no!" Dahlia rushed over to the student to check him over. Checking his pulse, she stopped. He was dead. She screamed out hysterically for someone to call the paramedics, and the staff from the adjacent dean's office rushed into the nurse's office.

"What's going on? Why are you screaming?"

"The student! He's dead!" she sobbed and fell to her knees. "He just came in feeling sick and died!"

The staff looked over to the dead body, and a grim silence fell over the room. By now, people were starting to filter into the hallway to see what had happened. The principal took Dahlia and helped her up. "See who his parents are. Dahlia needs to get out of here. I'm going to help her get some air.

When helped to the doorway, the principal spoke lopudly so that all of the staff and students could hear. "School is out for the day. An illness has claimed the life of one of the students. In order to prevent further infections, everyone is dismissed." The principal then shook his head. "We need the CEDA called in. Someone do that for me. And bring me Miss Dahlia's purse and car keys."

Dahlia was half walked and half carried outside to a covered section of the main entrance to the school. Students were starting to filter out now, ready to go home and talking about the death in the school. Several students approached the nurse to ask if she was alright. One of them had her purse. She smiled, and told them she was just shaken up. The school buses began to pull up to the curb, and students piled on to go home. The police hadn't arrived yet to take the body.

"Dahlia, you should go home. It wasn't your fault you know." The principal handed her her purse and keys, a kind look on his face. "Go on, go home. I'll give the police your number to get ahold of you. You can talk to them later."

"Yes, of course. I'll go home. Please, give me a call later to tell me what's going on." She stood up, and started walking to the teacher parking lot located behind the school. Her little Volkswagon Rabbit convertible started up and she backed out of the spot feeling numb inside. She drove through the wind and rain headed home. A few blocks from the school, she turned into a liquor store, and sat in her car just to let all that had happened sink in. A loud thump jerked her out of her daydream. A man had stumbled into her car, and was now furiously beating on it. Opening her car door, she started screaming at the man.

"What the hell is your problem? Get away from my car, you asshole!" In response, the man screamed in rage back at her and leaped onto the top of her car, but fell through the soft leather top. He screamed and clawed at Dahlia, unable to reach her. Backing away, she ran into the store and the store clerk was already calling the police having seen the exchange with her own eyes.The man managed to climb out of the convertible and then lunged at the door into the store. It slammed open, but he reeled from the blow. Dahlia rushed at the door to grasp the lock and turn it before the man could get inside. Trails of blood seeped from his nose, and he lunged at the door again, and again, and again. The door trembled violently with every attack, the glass becoming smeared with blood. Finally, with one last desperate lunge, the man hit the glass once more with a headbutt. A loud, sickening crack sounded out, and the man fell to the ground and didn't move. The force of the blow to the door had forced the metal frame to give, and the store alarm began to ring. The clerk suddenly looked down at the phone in her hand. "The line just went down..."

Looking outside through the blinding rain, a car suddenly swerved to avoid a woman in the street. It crashed into a pole and all electricity went out in the store, shutting off the alarm. Looking outside through the window, she could see the woman pounding on the car to get at the person inside. She could see the person inside was slumped over their steering wheel and unconscious or dead. The horn was blaring across the empty early morning street, and she stared in disbelief as the woman broke the window and started tearing at the person inside. There were no sounds other than the screams of the madwoman and the car horn. Down the street shadowy figures were racing to the store. The clerk ducked out of the back of the store, running for her life and into the woods behind the liquor store. Dahlia went the opposite way, and got back into her car. The seats were wet from the rain coming in through the hole in her roof, but it started up without a problem. She backed up from the store and spun her car around to jet away from the store as the people came into closer view. Like the man that had attacked her, they too had blood seeping from their noses, and some of them had it coming from their eyes and ears as well. The madwoman looked from her lifeless victim and lunged at the Rabbit. Stomping the gas pedal Dahlia sped away and down the street.

"What the hell is going on here?" Dahlia flicked on the radio in her car, and the announcer was jabbering away, cracking jokes and playing music. "Hey, a heartfelt good-bye to all the souls in Peoria, folks. It seems the Green Flu pandemic has appeared there. Better get out while you can."

"Oh. My. God." Dahlia shouted. "Why didn't anyone warn us it was coming?" Edited by ExcelExcel

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Chris clung to the railing of the old vessel, away from the madness inside. Long ago he had stopped hearing the screams of the patrons of the gambling boat, but the ship still hadn't stopped rocking.It pitched on the water, and slammed into the rocky outcropping the ship was docked at. The force of the impact nearly knocked him overboard. The rain was still coming down like crazy. He'd managed to hold onto the ancient railing while the ship tossed around on the choppy waters of the river. The ship jerked violently again, and ground against the rocky outcropping once more. This time, the shriek was more deep, and more menacing. From inside, there were many, many screams and hisses. There was maddening thumps and thuds from inside as the many infected roared in distress.

"So... loud sounds bother them..." He commented from outside. Positioning himself against the railing he leaned foreward to look at the remains of the now smashed in gangplank. There wasn't really anything left but a mangled mass of cloth and metal bars now, and none of it looked stable enough to support him. "Damn..."

Looking down at the water, he could see it was as clear and bright as a mirror, not to mention just as reflective. He could see them... the tiny cracks and tears in the hull.

The ship was going to sink. If it broke free of its mooring it would sink in the middle of the river and more importantly farther away from shore. Christopher could swim, but he wasn't great at it. He'd have no chance if the ship broke free.

The ship, as if wanting to contradict Chris, suddenly listed to shore. It was such a sudden dip that Chris nearly lost his footing and fell over the railing altogether. A shriek of metal and the Infected resounding together and filling Chris's head. He peeked at the ground, and saw the ship was leaning over the end of the concrete and he could jump about fifteen feet down and to his car. Fortunately a paranoid habit of always wanting his car keys on his person had finally paid off for something. Unless the roads out of the city were already jammed up with cars he'd be able to use his own to get the hell out of town.

He jumped, falling past windows filled with furniture and people. Some were alive, some weren't. But all of them were or had been some of the Infected or their victims. Landing awkwardly, he pitched backwards and fell on his ass. "Damn that hurt!"

Standing up he ran away from the casino, and into the parking lot. His footsteps pounded heavily on the asphault. His car was all the way back in the employee area, and that was almost 300 feet away. A sudden groan came to his ears and he froze. It came again, and gurgled a little. Then a burp.

Looking around, he saw a rather obese person swaying back and forth on its feet. It was facing away from him, though it was obvious the person wasn't well. Taking short, deliberate steps, he patted away from the man, careful not to startle him. He looked around slowly as the ship grinded once more. It was loud and deafening. The ship turned over onto it's side and promptly all of it's decorative windows blew out from the water coming into the ship and forcing all the air out the other side.

The obese man turned around, and Christopher saw the saddest excuse for a zombie ever come waddling toward him. It looked bloated, and blisters the size of grapefruits were all over his skin, as were sections of his guts poking from through his fractured skin. Terrible, vile smelling vomit driped from its mouth, and it hurled a large mess onto the pavement before being able to pursue Christopher.

"See ya..." He whispered, and started running in the opposite direction. Looking along the row of cars he was running down, he spotted a car on a jack, with it's trunk open and the four iron lying there next to a wheel. "Better than nothing..."

Grabbing the jack, he ran further down the isle, and looked behind him. The obese man looked like he was going crazier. He threw his arms and twitched and rocked back and forth like he was having a seizure. Then, without warning, he exploded. Green goo rained down in splatters. But Christopher got more than just a disturbing nightmare for the future with the explosion of the obese man.

[i][b]BEEP BEEP BEEP EET EET EET EET BEEP BEEP HONK HONK HONK BEEP BEEP BEEP[/b][/i]

Car alarms. Such wonderful things really. Perfectly wonderful in every way the Infected don't take too kindly to. Edited by Inuyasha Fandom

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James did not want to return to the bar that afternoon following the chaos from the previous night and let off an annoyed groan as the damage caused in the previous nights fight was every bit as bad as he had remembered it. He accepted that running a bar would lead to those situations, especially since life was starting to get tense following all the crap with the Green Flu going down out east. A few of the previous nights patrons had made light of the situation on the east coast and a brawl broke out, trashing most of the furniture and leaving broken glass strewn across the floor. Even worse was that James had to further damage the bar to get everyone out, glancing upwards at the hole he made in the ceiling with the shotgun and muttering obscenities under his breath as he headed into the backroom to grab a broom deliberately taking his time to do so.


As he rummaged around for a broom, he heard the telltale jangle of the bell over the bar door and yelled out that they were closed. Not hearing the bell go off again tipped James off that he hadn't left yet and he stormed out of the backroom carrying the broom in hand in an effort to look intimidating. He soon lost his bluster as he came face to face with the intruder, a scrawny man bleeding heavily from his nose and mouth.

"Get outta here dickhead" James yelled at the man and pointed the broom towards the door hoping that this would encourage the man to leave. It instead had the opposite effect that he had wanted with the man let out an insane scream and starting flailing in an attack on James. Fending off the attack with the broom, James shoved his boot into the mans gut and pushed him flat onto his back. Snarling angrily as it scrambled back to its feet, it was soon struck in the head with the broom as it splintered and broke. James watched as it fell to the ground and struggled back to its feet and soon realized what was happening. Not taking the chance to mull over the fact that the man may still be alive, he vaulted the counter and snatched the shotgun from underneath the bar.


"And now I have to deal with ******* zombies" James spat angrily as he fired a round into the zombies head as it turned to face him. Knowing that there could only be more of the zombies around, James grabbed as many shells that he could find underneath as well as the baseball bat that was hidden underneath and headed for the door. He half considered heading into the backroom to empty his safe but money was hardly important at this point in time.

After all, you aren't going to need any money when it's the end of the world as you know it.

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"****!" Christopher high tailed it, hearing the screams and roars of all of the Infected inside the ship. The sounds of breaking glass and the thumps and thuds of people landing on the pavement caused Chris to look behind him as he ran past car after car. The Infected were clamoring out of the stricken vessel and leaping onto the concrete embankment, and racing for the car alarm that the man's explosion had set off. They were barreling across the tops of cars and racing down the isles, and Chris wasn't exactly hard to see.

Chris spotted his car on the very end of the parking lot, the Infected right on his heels. He pulled his keys out and unlocked his car and clamored inside as the Infected came ever closer. Jamming the key into the ignition, the old girl roared to life, and Chris jammed his foot on the gas pedal just as the first of the Infected approached his car. Pulling out of the parking spot he raced through the parking lot and onto Highway 16. Behind him, he could see the Infected not giving up, even as he raced farther away from them. The rain was still coming down in sheets, making it hard to see, not to mention steer his car. Looking down at his gas gauge, he could see he only had half a tank of gas. "Damn it...And you're not exactly one to be sippin' on the gas like a lady..."

Taking a deep breath, he lightened his foot on the gas pedal and started to slow down. The infected were long behind him, though that didn't mean there weren't more somewhere down the road. His car was wonderful old gal, sturdy and well built. yes, but it wasn't a tank. Those things could seriously damage it, not to mention break his windows to get at him if he was stopped long enough.

The roads were clear, but not without their hazards. Driving through the hub of downtown East Peoria, he came up to a stoplight, but stopped about fifty feet away from it when he saw that the three cars sitting there weren't moving even though the light changed from red to green. Exhaust still came from their mufflers, but inside there were no people.

"Oh my god... these people were attacked in their cars..." Shifting into reverse, he backed his car up to head through the nearby Burger King parking lot when he spotted the Infected stumbling through the rain. They didn't seem to notice him or his engine running, nor was he about to give them the chance. He allowed his car to roll backwards and into the parking lot of Burger King. It was a gentle downward slope, so his car rolling back didn't make any noise other than its engine purring. Once he was far enough into the parking lot, he shifted gears and raced back onto the road, driving past the East Peoria Police Department. Several squad cars were parked there, but a majority of them were gone on patrol. Christopher pulled into the parking lot and raced inside, hoping that someone would know what to do. A woman sitting behind a desk on the other side of some glass looked up at him, her eyebrow raised. "Can I help you?"

"Yes! Green flu is here! I need to know where some evacuation points are! We need to warn people!"

The woman shook her head. "It is not. We'd have been-"

A gunshot from somewhere inside the rather small station caused them both to jump and a man in an officer's uniform came stumbling into the room. He had a huge gash across his forehead.

"Julie, it's Mike. He went nuts! He attacked me from out of nowhere!"

The woman stood up. "You killed him?"

"Yes... It was self-defense, I swear!"

The woman looked visibly disturbed, and turned to Christopher. "I'm sorry, but we need to deal with this. Can you come back later?"

The officer suddenly started coughing and wheezing, and fell to his knees, violently vomiting. Chris knew what was going on. "Lady! Get the hell out of there! He's sick! He's got the green flu!" Christopher started pounding on the glass furiously, trying to save the woman. "Get out of there before he kills you!"

"What are you babbling about?" The woman turned around as the sick man jerked violently around and lunged for her, grasping her throat and savagely started beating her to a bloody pulp. She screamed and tried to fight, but the officer was too strong for her. Chris looked around for anything at all to smash the window, and ripped a fire extinguisher from the wall and threw it through the glass. The fire extinguisher sailed through the air, smacking the officer on the head. He reeled and Chris jumped the short wall into the room. The man snarled, and went after the new threat. Ducking down, Chris dodged left and under a metal desk. He flipped it over, blocking the man from directly reaching him. The officer screamed in rage, and slammed his weight against the desk, pushing it and Chris against the wall. Chris felt the man punch the desk, and it gave some, unable to stand up to the brutal force of the officer hitting it. Pivoting around on his rear, he braced his legs against the underside of the desk and his back against the wall. He pushed with all his might, and the desk was launched, knocking the man away. Chris stood, and winced when he saw the woman wasn't moving, blood pooling around her from a wound in her throat. The officer was beginning to stand, but Chris picked the fire extinguisher up and brought it down as hard as he could, and heard a sickening crack. The officer fell and didn't move. Breathing heavily, Chris noticed the policeman's holster had a glock in it.

"Well, he certainly isn't needing it..." Chris helped himself to the weapon, as well as the two ammo clips in the man's belt. He stood then and looked around, thankful there weren't any others in the building. A can of spray paint sat on a desk, probably confiscated from some vandals. Grabbing it, he looked around further and found two more pistols and a box of ammunition for the three pistols. Before leaving, he walked over to the dead woman, and closed her eyes. She deserved that at least. Cautiously, he left the police station, peeking all directions before heading back to his car. Opening his car door, he sighed. The world was going to hell in a hand basket and he only had some pistols. Cocking the magazine of one of them, he held it up. Even in the pouring rain it glistened with the shine of salvation.

Looking out through the rain, he could see a horde amassing in the nearby supermarket parking lot. It was time to leave. If he headed down this street and took a left at the second stoplight, he'd be able to make a bee line for the bridge across the river and then to the Peoria P.D. Starting up his car, he spotted something massive stumbling through the supermarket parking lot. Whatever it was, Chris wasn't sticking around to figure out what it was.

Heading down the road, Chris passed by several meandering victims of the infection, each of them running after his car once he passed. One of them ran into the road hearing him approach, and Chris slammed into the poor woman with his car. She flew up over his hood, and flopped onto the ground as he drove away.

"Stupid Infected *****...You against my car? My car wins." he commented. He turned the corner and pressed down on his accelerator. The bridge across the river was less than a mile away, now. But thick, choking, billowing black smoke was drifting across the road. From what, Chris couldn't tell yet. As he sped down the road, he passed by the Caterpillar main headquarters, and it turned out that the building was on fire.

Through the smoke and over the bridge he went, heading into downtown Peoria. Directly in front of him was the bus terminal. A large banner had been pinned to the side of the building, stating it was an evacuation point in case of emergencies. To his right, many cars were stopped at the stoplight, but it was red so he thought nothing of it, other than how many people were completely clueless about the disease that had come to the city and was quickly spreading. He pulled up to the side of the public transportation depot, and could see it had all of its buses lined up and ready to go about on their designated routes. Glancing down at the clock on his aftermarket stereo, he noticed it was half past the hour. The buses should have pulled out fifteen minutes ago. Looking down between the buses, he spotted what he already knew. All of the people here that took the public transportation had contracted Green Flu.

Chris took off again as the Infected converged on his car, he speeding away and into the rain again. "Damn it!" Chris swore. "Where is all the normal people?"

Ahead of him were several cars, but this time he could see the light was green. More abandoned cars. Reving up his engine, Chris hopped the curb and drove through several bushes and swerved onto the road on the other side of them. More cars sat here as well, their windows broken or their doors open. The people here had run for their lives seeing several of the other cars attacked. Traversing the city was about to get real difficult with the roads randomly blocked with cars.

Heading down the wrong way on a one way street, He passed the Peoria Civic Center, once a hopping place for concerts and sporting events. He drove down the road, and passed by the interstate entrance. He swung onto an adjacent road, heading for the hospitals. He could see the familiar cherries and berries of police vehicles, and breathed a sigh of relief. At least he might be safe and evacuated if he was at the hospital. Heading to OSF St. Francis, he smiled, thinking he was safe now until help arrived. How wrong he was. Edited by Inuyasha Fandom

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Dahlia drove down the street in her neighborhood, completely soaked to the bone, despite being in her car. The gigantic hole in her roof didn't help. Her white blouse was completely see through, showing off her white bra. She looked through her windshield, and saw that her street was already flooding. It wasn't high water, maybe a few inches deep. However, her little Rabbit wasn't exactly a larger vehicle, and she wasn't about to let her car stall out with the Green Flu epidemic all around her.

She turned her wheel, and over the curb her little car went, and into some stranger's nicely managed petunias. "Oopsie..."

Driving across lawns and flower beds, she made her way to her own house in order to change clothes. Pulling up into her driveway, she smiled. Home was the safest place to be right now. She hurried up to her front door, and slid her key into the lock. Across the street, she heard the sounds of screams, and looking behind her she saw the neighbor being mauled to death by the mailman. She gasped and quickly went inside before she was noticed. Once inside, she hurried back into her bedroom and started throwing off her wet clothing. She turned on her shower, and stepped into the hot water. It was a blessing in and of itself, and her bathroom shower radio clicked on, its motion detector activating it. The familiar radio DJ was replaced by the emergency broadcast system. "Attention, to all that are still alive and uninfected: The following locations are evacuation points..."

Listening intently, she sighed. OSF St. Francis was mentioned. Thankfully, OSF St. Francis was just a few miles away, and practically a straight shot if she took the nearby War Memorial Drive. If she could get there, she'd have a chance.

Finishing her shower, she glanced out of her bathroom window. The lower portions of the glass were frosted to allow for some measure of privacy, but the top was not. Looking out into her backyard, she could see people wandering through it, stumbling and occasionally vomiting. Her neighbors... they had already succumbed to the infection and were already at her doorstep. Ducking down, she hyperventilated for a few seconds, entering into panic mode. No sounds of pounding on her walls or the breaking off glass could be heard. Once she realized they hadn't seen her and therefore weren't coming for her, she crouched down and snuck into her darkened bedroom due to the storm outside. Afraid to turn on her bedroom light for it would have shown into the backyard from her sliding glass doors leading to it, she crept over to her closet and started looking through her clothing. She had a lot of skirts, but no pants.

Skirts weren't exactly made for running, and she had a feeling she'd be doing a lot of that very soon. She kept a close eye on the backyard, though the figures moving just on the other side of the doors were blocked by the curtains. They couldn't see her, and she was more than content to not see them. Pulling on a black knee length skirt, she sighed and then put on her black lacy bra and then another blouse with a heavy floral pattern. She grabbed her nurse's overcoat and then crept out of her bedroom and into her kitchen. She kept an eye out on all her windows, watching for the Infected possibly spotting her. They weren't, so she went about her business and collected several butcher knives and a cleaver to put in her laptop computer bag. She unplugged her computer and placed it in the bag as well. If she needed it later, it would come in handy. Wi-Fi would help her gain access to various maps and other things.

Standing now with her bag over her shoulder, Dahlia walked out into the living room and looked through her large bay window into the front yard. Seeing the coast was clear, she grabbed her car keys and back out into the rain she went. She opened her car door and sat on the wet seat. The rain just wasn't letting up, and the water running down her street looked even deeper as it was now halfway up her yard. She turned the engine over, and backed her car up as she spotted the mailman come running at her car. She turned the wheel and sped away, the ride rather bumpy as she drove across people's yards again.

She exited her flooding street and onto War Memorial, her little car jetting down the street. Infected came pouring into the street, rushing at the car as it rocketed down the street. The sound of her engine attracted them. Dahlia crouched down in her seat, her eyes on the road. "These things aren't people anymore... they aren't human anymore... Not people... not people!" she told herself as she pressed her foot down harder on the gas pedal. Dahlia began plowing through the Infected. Dahlia's car hit person after person, they flying up over car and into her windshield before flopping onto the pavement behind her car. Her windshield cracked from the force of the bodies hitting it, and blood spattered everywhere, even into the car through the hole in the roof.

Dahlia sped through the neighborhood, heading past countless Infected. Her car rattled and jumped every time she hit something, and her car bounced up every time she ran over someone. Through her broken windshield she could see the blood smears and dents to her car. Light grey smoke or steam was coming out from under her hood. Her car would be finished if she didn't get to the hospital.

Down the road she went, heading ever closer to the Hospital. She passed countless motorists lying dead in their seats, or instead their abandoned cars. About halfway to the hospital, she had to swerve around an eighteen wheeler and trailer that had crashed and lied burning across the road. She slammed into more Infected, and now her poor car started sputtering and now the light grey smoke was a darker color, and much thicker.

"Come on, dammit!" She could feel her poor little car sputtering, but the hospital was just down the way. Ahead of her, she could see the red and blue rotating lights of the squad cars outside of the hospital. "Oh thank god..."

Her car sputtered once more, and came to a dead stop. The engine died, leaving her in silence. Grabbing her bag, Dahlia opened her door, butcher knife in hand. She hurried down the street, to the sanctuary of the hospital. She heard another car heading her way, and turned around to wave at the coming Cadillac. They didn't stop, but instead swerved to come and mow her down. Leaping out of the way, she dropped her bag, leaving it for the car to run over as it sped down to OSF St. Francis. "Asshole! I'm not a monster!" Dahlia called out after the car.

She started running down the street, pulling up her long skirt as so to have a better stride. Her high heels were easy enough to run in, but it wasn't her fear of tripping that made her rush. The Infected were all around her, and she only had a knife. A big knife, but only a knife nonetheless. On reaching the hospital, she could see it was being guarded by the Peoria Police department, the squad cars blocking all entrances, and the officers themselves with their guns out.

"All patients displaying symptoms will be turned away! I repeat, all patients displaying symptoms will be turned away! Lethal force will be used!" someone's voice boomed over a megaphone. Dahlia ran into the parking lot of the Hospital and came face to face with the barrrels of guns being drawn on her. "Halt!"

"I'm not infected!" Dahlia yelled, dropping her knife and holding up her hands. The cops did not lower their weapons, but one motioned for her to enter the hospital. Breathing a sigh of relief, she did so. She was safe, at least for now.

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Chris pulled up to the parking deck of the hospital as a blonde woman in a white overcoat was let inside the emergency room doors. He drove into the deck and parked his car, and found himself in the same predicament. Police were standing around the third floor entrance, guns drawn and pointed at the doors. People were now starting to make their way to the hospital as it was a known evacuation point.

"Let's just hope those things don't attack..." he muttered and made his way over to the police. On getting closer, he could see the doors were barricaded from the outside. "Excuse me, why aren't you letting people through these doors? Why are they blocked?"

One of the officers sighed. "The Infected have taken the third floor, fourth floor, and fifth floor. We're making sure people aren't going in because of the danger they pose."

"Is the rest of the hospital safe?" Chris asked, alarmed. The officer shook his head. "Yes, only these three floors are off limits."

Slightly unnerved by the knowledge that the Infected were already inside the hospital, Chris thanked the officer and made his way back down the parking deck and into the hospital. He cautiously peered at the ceiling above him, and shook himself of his fears. His pistols were safely tucked away inside his backpack. He could at least defend himself should there be an outbreak in the hospital.

He made his way to the emergency room, and spotted the blonde woman whom he had seen earlier. She was nervously fretting, wringing her hands and looking around. He took an empty seat next to her in the waiting room, and she smiled at him. He held out his hand, and she took his. "I'm Christopher Denbo. And you are?"

"Dahlia Severest. I'm a nurse at Central High."

"Cocktail waiter for the gambling boat." Chris smiled at her, and she took a breath. "I'm worried we might not get out of here alive."

"Well, that's a possibility, but all we can do is fight to survive, right?" Gunshots resounded from outside, and they both stood up, but seeing that nothing came rushing into the waiting room, they assumed they were safe for the moment.

"What caused this?" Dahlia asked, and slumped over in her chair and began to cry. Chris put his arm around her. "I don't know. People were saying that green flu is related to rabies. It does the same to humans as rabies does to animals."

Dahlia looked up to him with big blue eyes as innocent as a child's. "Why is this happening?"

Chris shrugged. "I don't know. I wouldn't mind knowing why, either. But we probably won't ever know. We just need to get evacuated, and then we can try to pick up our lives."

A man came into the hospital then, and began screaming obscenities and threatening all of the evacuees with hell, and how they were all sinners and deserved to become infected with the disease. "You will all die! There is no salvation from the lord's wrath! Repent!" He screamed, and Chris felt his hand inching to the backpack at his feet. "Now there's someone who deserves to be shot." Chris growled. People began to stand to take action, but the hospital orderlies were already on it. Two of them threw the man to the floor and pinned him down, and a third administered a shot to the man's bum, sedating him. They carried him away, and Dahlia breathed a sigh of relief. "What a horrible man!"

"You ain't kiddin' honey." Edited by Inuyasha Fandom

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[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]I remember meeting her for the first time, last November at University Of Miami. My second day as the semester substitute in a psychology course; I was so caught up in writing out the notes for my two chapter slideshow presentation for the lectureâ?¦ I didnâ??t notice the thick oak door open and close. The lock snaps shut and the sound of flats clicking against the tile draw my eyes away from the computer screen for a split second, I pay it no mind and go back to furiously writing my notes on the two topics on hand. What catches me off guard is the sound of the person running into a desk. I look up again to see a slim brunette with blue grey eyes, maybe a bit taller than five and a half feet; her tight Hollister clothing accentuate her well endowed chest and almost hourglass figure. She begins to reach out in front of her, hands flailing slightly as they fall to her sides and she measures the wood table top with her fingertips running along to the back of the seat. Sheâ??s blindâ?¦ I thought, out of my curiosity I summon the class roster, took a glance and began making my way over to help her into the seat. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Senorita Greenwoodâ?¦ I presume?[/b]â? I ask while taking her hand and helping her into the chair. She smiles, warmly accepting my aid by tightening her grip slightly. â??[b]You must be the new prof my friends told me aboutâ?¦[/b]â? The young woman mused while she begins unpacking her laptop; I took the opportunity to pull up my lecturing stool in front of her desk. â??[b]Mister Santiago, right?[/b]â? Her voice is somewhat bubbly and cheerful, I canâ??t help but smile. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Doctor Alejandro Santiago, Ph.D, just your average forensic scientist and coronerâ?¦Senorita.[/b]â? I formally introduce myself to her; she laughs and takes my hand. â??[b]Wellâ?¦ Doctor Santiago, you can call me Stacey.[/b]â? The intonation in her voice changes to a slightly higher pitch. It seems like she wants to find a new friend, thereâ??s something about this young woman that reminds me of someone I used to knowâ?¦ I just canâ??t seem to put my finger on it! I glance at the clock and thereâ??s still half an hour before the course begins; my attention shifts to the rest of the roomâ?¦ To my surprise, weâ??re the only two in the room. I guess it wouldnâ??t hurt to get to know her a bit better, I can just lecture on the fly, I wind up doing it all the time and they get it.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]Right?[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Stacey, what brings you here?[/b]â? I begin as she closes her laptop and puts it back into her bag, I think sheâ??s trying to familiarise herself with me while her hands run through mine. â??[b]Oh, I just thought that I needed this for just General Edâ?¦ But from what youâ??ve told me so farâ?¦ Like how worn your hands are, you love your work. The scent of cologne on you is one of those really expensive brands, so you are dignified. A bit, but it isnâ??t an obnoxious brand so it might mean youâ??re more about fact rather than aesthetic. Though, the slight sting of alcohol coming from your breath might signify that you have issues with a lot of peopleâ?¦Possibly because you work against crooks and help the dead?[/b]â? How does she know that much about me already?! This is not natural, and a slight uncanny but then again I apprehend that she canâ??t see so her remaining senses are quite heightened. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]It seems like youâ??ve done more studying in the realms of social psych, working on your schema of me.[/b]â? I remark, the clock still reads that Iâ??ve ample time to finish what needs to be done. As I begin to get back to the computer, her grip on my hands tighten even more and Iâ??m compiled to sit back down. â??[b]So, Alejandro. What brings you here?[/b]â? The brunette questioned, I chuckled as I turned to face her. â??[b]Wellâ?¦ Patrick Newton, the original professor who was supposed to be teaching this course, decided to take sabbatical this semester but he didnâ??t want to leave his newest batch of promising students to the hands of the unknown, so he called me in as a favour. Iâ??ve studied psychology in tandem while I was working as part of Miamiâ??s finest, so I know about how classical conditioning turns people into creatures of habit or how the body uses sensation and perception to make sense of how you possibly view me as an immediate friendâ?¦ My touch to you could possibly be warm, which means that I can be a caring person and caring is a sign of friendship, most of the time, right?[/b]â? I answer; she laughs again and smiles while I go back to finishing my lecture notes. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Youâ??re good, doctor. I think Iâ??m going to have a great time in this class.[/b]â? Stacey replies as I look up and chuckle a bit. â??[b]Mi amiga, you donâ??t have to be so formal with me all time. Puede llamarme Ali.[/b]â? I assure her. That was the start of something new. That was the start of someone worth fighting for.[/i][/font]


[font=times new roman, times, serif]Alejandro snapped back to reality as he found himself running, soaked to the bone toward his target. [i]Finally, some good news.[/i] He thought as he glanced back to see that he had put some considerable distance between the horde and himself. Santiago didnâ??t relish in the relief for long since he knew this would be that one specific nightmare he couldnâ??t wake up from. He looked forward again to see that he was closing in on the entrance of the hospital. Many men in uniform stood in a line blocking the door, their rifles raised and ready to turn Alejandro into Swiss cheese.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]¡Espera un momento! ¡No disparen! Iâ??M ONE OF YOU GUYS![/i][/b][i]â? [/i]The doctor yelled as he slowed his sprint to a jog in front of the door. The riflemen lowered their guns as one of them stepped forward. Ali recognised the uniforms they were wearing and took note of the patch on the manâ??s shoulder that went to interrogate him. â??[b][i]Your badge, kid. Youâ??re not from around here, are ya?[/i][/b][i]â? [/i]The older man questioned the 26 year old. â??[b][i]No Master Sergeantâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Alejandro saluted, while the older man saluted back. It was Santiagoâ??s reflex, a majority of his family were in the military and he was always told by his parents to salute a higher ranking officer no matter what branch, even though he was just a civilian as a sign of respect.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Iâ??m a doctor from Miami, sir. Puedo ayudar a estas personas. If I could get in and start an autopsy on some of the fallen, sirâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Alejandro was calm and collected to prove that he wasnâ??t like the crazies that the firing squad were picking off all day, the master sergeant looked hard into Santiagoâ??s eyes and nodded. â??[b][i]Youâ??ll find some of the nurses and orderlies on the ground floor, son. Canâ??t go up too far though, those bastards have us rooted down deep.[/i][/b][i]â? [/i]The older man replied and saluted while Santiago thanked him and saluted back while he made his way inside. Once in he saw the utter disarray the hospital was in and oddly enough, he felt quite at home. Alejandro yelled a few orders to some of the nurses who were standing around a few water coolers.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Iâ??ve got a man with a broken arm in that chair, get started on a cast, someone![/i][/b]â?
â??[b][i]A woman is going into cardiac arrest; I NEED A CART DOWN HERE, NOW![/i][/b]â?
â??[b][i]Will someone show this sedated man to the restroom? Heâ??s havingâ?¦ Problems with his...![/i][/b]â?[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]After he made his way through the busy main entrance and stepping over the sedated man who made a mess of himself, Alejandro noticed a red haired, hazel eyed young man, who looked like he was running the bar before the attack standing next to a slightly older blonde who looked like a pinup model from one of his friendsâ?? magazines.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]You two look like you know this place better than I doâ?¦ ¿Alguno de ustedes ha visto una alta morena con los ojos grises?[/i][/b]â? Alejandro asked, but they both slowly shook their heads, since they had no clue what he really said. Santiago pulled the photo from his jacket pocket, which remained dry even after running through the sheets of cold rain.

â??[b][i]This young girl, sheâ??s my friend. ¿La has visto?[/i][/b]â?[/font] Edited by Anakoni Stark

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"Oh, no, doctor." Dahlia shook her head. "I'm sorry, maybe we can help you look for her or maybe find something out for you by asking around." The blonde bubbled.

"Beats sticking around here. ****, where are my manners? Name's Christopher. I work for-er... rather, worked for the gambling boat here in town on the river. It's by this point sunken on its side in her dock. This lovely here Is Dahlia. I'm judging from her name tag she's a high school nurse."

Looking down, she blushed once she'd seen she'd grabbed one of the coats she'd left her name tag on. Probably the one she'd worn at the school. Her expression changed in an instant. "Oh no, I just remembered! My students! They're out there in this!" Looking to the doors of the emergency room her eyes filled with tears at the thought of her students dying like the student in the office, or worse yet, becoming one of the Infected. Chris patted her on the back. "You're not the only one with something precious out there that's more than likely lost. My father... and younger brothers and sisters." Chris snorted derisively.

"We haven't been touched by the Infected. So, maybe we aren't immune. I hear its possible to be asymptomatic. to it..." Dahlia chimed. "I did hear a thing or two about it, but never even thought this would happen so deep in the country."

"Well, the lovely proves she has a brain, too. Come on, let's get this search party underway." Edited by ExcelExcel

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"and I am Alejandro. Gracias, mis amigos."

"No problem, dude." Chris winked at him and the surprised expression on the doctor's face. "I can speak a little Spanish. So I'll understand random things you say." He crossed his arms. "Now, about this friend of yours... What floor was she on?"

"Numero quatro."

"The fourth. Okay, let's go ask security to pull up video camera footage. Knowing if she's been seen recently on camera might help. Let's head over there."

The three made their way to a security watchroom, and found they were not the only ones searching for people in the hospital. Many hospital and police were doing the same, and with help from some of their IT guys and computer geeks. Footage all over the hospital was being filtered into four dozen monitors, half of them showing them to be floors infested with the Infected. Many of them simply loitered around, But some violently vomited, and many seemed to somehow be rather good at getting some distance. Many of the curtains to the windows of the doors were drawn, but no light was shining underneathe. Chris tapped the shoulder of a man on a latop looking at the hospital security footage.

"Excuse me, Can we see some footage prior to the Infection breaking out? We'd like to see of a patient is in one of the rooms on the fourth floor. Maybe she's okay. Alejandro, what's her name? Maybe there's a security camera near her room we can look at.

"Stacey Greenwood. Room 4532"

The man smiled. "Sure, we can help you. We're doing that right now, and it's nice to have a name of someone on that floor."

The man typed on his keyboard, and a camera view panning down an almost vacant hall appeared. A body was lying near one of the doors, and it wore a nurse's attire. "Is this right? If so, we can bring up the footage right now."

"Si."

The man looked through some smaller paned windows on his laptop, and brought up a young woman being escorted down the hall by one of the nurses. They were chatting back and forth, but then the nurse started looking around wildly. Then a moment later, though there was no audio, she was plainly visible screaming and pointing at something off camera. She suddenly turned to the young woman and forcefully pushed her into a room and slammed the door shut as a group of the Infected swarmed the woman, savagely beating her with frenzied kicks and punches. The man clicked away from the window. "Yes. it seems she's alright. But... there's no one going to go save her right now... We can't afford to."

Chris smiled. "I have a solution for that..."

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[font=times new roman, times, serif]Beth Carlton walked alongside of Stacey Greenwood as the two of them were shooting the breeze once again. â??[b][i]But the socially awkward girl gets both the vampire and the werewolf, and they duke it out in order to take the maidenâ??s hand in marriage; which would be exciting for humans like us, because vampires and werewolves areâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Carlton was going on about her favourite series of romantic novels that had almost every cliché in the book and writing that proved to be atrocious to many with in the old world science fiction and fantasy genres.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]I think contracting lycanthropy or porphyric haemophilia have overstayed their welcome, right?[/i][/b]â? Greenwood interjected with a bit of sarcastic agitation; the brunette was growing tired of hearing the same thing from her dark haired middle aged nurse almost everyday since she had arrived for the surgery, in fact she was becoming weary of almost everything in this town to the point where she wished that she stayed in Miami to have the life changing operation done instead of coming home to what little family she had left. The nurse fell silent and felt stupid for realising she had repeated herself again for the umpteenth time; it was the moment for them to change the subject since Carlton did not know much about her patient.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]So I hear you have family here, Miss Greenwood?[/i][/b]â? The older woman began as they continued down the hall; she began checking to see if the doors were properly closed for the night, almost all of the patients except for hers began hearing about the green flu and it was Carltonâ??s duty to make sure that one of the busiest spots in the small town was protected from the attack as much as possible. â??[b][i]My grandfather owns a store here, maybe youâ??ve heard of Greenwood Antiquities?[/i][/b]â? Stacey sighed at the mention of her familyâ??s store; she knew she was next in line to inherit it when her grandfather passed away. She loathed working there, stuck behind a register dealing with the older crowd and the history nerds from the local high schools and outlets of Illinois Central College, most of them men, who probably fantasised about the cute girl behind the register. When in reality Stacey wanted to spend more time at her favourite bar in a city in Florida with her closest friend.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Yes, Greenwood Antiquities! My friends and I love it there; we could spend all day in that shop going over theâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Beth noticed the despondence in the blind womanâ??s body language and decided to change up the subject again to prevent from becoming another predictable person in the small town. â??[b][i]Iâ??ve also noticed in the last couple of days, a taller, dark gentleman leaving your room. Heâ??s a friend of yours?[/i][/b]â? She began with more curiosity, since they didnâ??t get many out of state visitors, especially one who was quite good looking.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Oh. Ali. The doctorâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Stacey smiled at the thought of him, she knew that one person in the world really cared about her. â??[b][i]He and I go back a year, heâ??s an amazing guy really. Heâ??s funny, smart, a bit hard to get sometimes, loves helping peopleâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Greenwood was enthralled with him once again, just the mere mention of him made her think she had been witness to a modern day mythical superhero of sorts.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]â?¦And heâ??s really cute! AND HE HAS AN ACCENT![/i][/b]â? A girlish squeal came from Beth as the two slowed their walk down to a crawl; they were both captivated by the doctor, one was more into the personality while the other was more into his looks. Stacey laughed airily; she was attracted to him physically as well. She had more than just one accidental run in with his muscular body while they hung out poolside at Skybar, but she tried her best not to show her attraction to anyone.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]I wonder, does he think the same way about me?[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]We bumped into each other in this hallway right here, a few days agoâ?¦ And he said to me: Oh dios, lo seento seniorrritaâ?¦ And he was dressed like he was out to party; Aliâ??s quite the man, Stacey![/i][/b]â? Beth swooned as she rolled her Rs as hard as she could; the nurse envisioned a romantic candle lit dinner with the stranger while Stacey pictured the two of them with their bodies close moving in time with the electronic dance music, Greenwood began to give into her deeper desires and it made her really appreciate the visits Alejandro had with her. â??[b][i]Heâ??s a doctor too, yâ??knowâ?¦? Aâ?¦ surgeon.[/i][/b]â? Greenwood was fuelling their swoon session even more by painting him in a better light. â??[b][i]Ohâ?¦ Iâ??d let him play operation with me anytimeâ?¦[/i][/b]â? The brunette mused almost absentmindedly and the older nurse sighed in agreement with her. The two laughed at the thought of their newest suitor, and for once during her return to a place she called home, Stacey felt a slight sense of belonging.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] Their bonding moment was suddenly interrupted by what Greenwood considers a blur; she heard deranged screaming and rapid footfalls closing in on them as she was pushed into her room and the door slammed shut. The sounds outside her door were unbearable; she ran to the other end of the room, grabbed her iPhone off the nightstand and commanded that Siri dial her favourite doctor. The line rang for one second and she could hear Alejandro on the other end.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]This is Santiago.[/i][/b]â?[/font]


[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Sir, you arenâ??t allowed into the hospital.[/i][/b]â? The slightly older staff sergeant stopped the party of three before the main door leading into the rest of the complex. â??[b][i]My name is Doctor Alejandro Santiago, and this is my assistant Dahlia Severest, that wonderful young man is Chrisâ?¦ Heâ??s theâ?¦ Eh, contratado ayudaâ?¦[/i][/b]â? He introduced himself and his new friends to the two unwavering guards as he held up the police badge around his neck. â??[b][i]Weâ??re heading up there, I heard from your friend plugged into the matrix over there thatâ?¦ Someoneâ?¦ is still alive and she needs our help.[/i][/b]â? [/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Iâ??m sorry doctor, the sitrep says itâ??s---[/i][/b]â? The staff sergeant began again, but Aliâ??s emotions took a hold of his logic. â??[b][i]I donâ??t give a s--- about the goddamned sitrep! There is a woman along with however many are trapped in there AND THEY NEED OUR ASSISTANCE! NOW, DO I REALLY HAVE TO GET YOUR COMMANDING OFFICER IN HERE?! I MEAN I WI---![/i][/b]â? [/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Iâ??m sorry, sirâ?¦ I mean Doctor Santiago. G-Go r-r-right on in, sir.[/i][/b]â? The two men guarding the door hesitantly lowered their firearms and opened the doors while the rest of the lobby turned their attention to see what had gotten the Latino fired up, while the three made their way into the dimly lit unknown, Alejandro turned around to face the scared audience.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]It was nothing people! Donâ??t worry about it, just stay calm and volver al trabajo, no hay nada que ver aquí![/i][/b]â? He reassured them with a goofy grin as the doors closed.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Well, doctor. It seems like you know how to make an entranceâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Dahlia mused as Alejandro handed her one of the pistols that he managed to scrape from one of the dead police officers he came across on his way to the hospital. Chris chuckled and nodded in agreement with the blonde.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]You must be one hell of a man to party with if you dress like that, is that Bacardi and Coke I smell on your breath doctor?[/i][/b]â?The red haired young man wondered aloud as he undid the safety of his pistol.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]You both seem like an interesting pair, lo que este debe ser divertido.[/i][/b]â? The doctor mused as they began their ascent into the diseased riddled asylum. Alejandro made his way the front of the group and looked at his two friends, the thought of the only person who mattered to him snapped into his mind for a splitsecond and a smile formed on his face.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][font=times new roman, times, serif] [/font]"[b][i]The two of you don't mind if I take point on this one, I hope?[/i][/b]" He asked as the doctor pulled a small flashlight from another coat pocket.[/font] Edited by Anakoni Stark

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Chris smiled in response, and cocked the magazine of his gun. "Trust me, Doc, you have no idea how 'interesting' I really am."

Dahlia giggled, and nodded. "I can tell. So, Chris, I'm curious. Are you gay?" Chris chuckled. "Yes, sweetheart, I am. Just keep in mind I'm not fragile and can kick plenty of ass." Dahlia laughed at his rather chipper tone.

The three walked down the corridor of the hospital, orderlies and doctors rushing about around them. The Doctors glanced down at the three, seemingly preparing for war. Indeed they were. The three arrived at the elevator leading up to the floors infested with the Infected. Dahlia took a deep breath, and stared at the stainless steel doors. She definitely wasn't thrilled with going up there to the fourth floor. Alejandro cocked his head as Chris handed him one of his own pistols. "Miss Dahlia, you don't have to go if you don't want to. We'll be fine on our own."

"No. I'm going." Dahlia retorted, sounding slightly anxious. "I will not sit around and do nothing while there's people needing help." Chris smiled. "You ever shot off a gun before?"

"No..."

"I see. Well, that would explain why the safety is still on. Here, let me show you how to undo it." Chris went through the steps, and showed Dahlia how to handle the weapon. Once it seemed like second nature on how to wield the glock, they all turned to face the doors to the elevator. Several patients and nurses and doctors were standing around them now, watching them get ready to head up into another nightmare.

"This elevator is really noisy because it's so old. It was here when the hospital was first built, and the Infected don't like loud noises..." Dahlia said, remembering several times she'd taken this exact elevator and the Infected's reaction to the car horn of the wrecked car from the liquor store earlier. "We're going to be walking right into them coming at us..."

Chris undid the safety on a second pistol, and nodded in agreement. "I know. They don't like car alarms, either. You two ready?"

"Si."

"Ready as I'll ever be."

"Good." Chris pushed the 'up' button with the barrel of his gun, and the doors swung open with a loud 'ding!'

"Here we go..." Dahlia raised her pistol and entered into the elevator. Alejandro pressed the button for the elevator to go up to the fourth floor. It began its slow assent, the elevator rumbling and grinding its way up the shaft. Loudly pitched shrieks of metal echoed all around them, making them all wince.

Lobby.

First floor.

Second Floor. By now, loud screams and primal, angry roars could be heard from above them.

Third Floor. As the elevator passed by, angry banging and almost deafening shouts could be heard as the Infected pounded away on the metal doors.

"Fourth floor! Ladies' intimates, Zombies and diseases!" Chris chimed, and Dahlia aimed her gun directly in front of her as Alejandro stood next to her, doing the same. Chris ducked down in front of them, kneeling down with gun ready. The doors of the elevator slid open, and the loud 'ding!' of the elevator chime went off. Ahead of them, The Infected were already rushing at them, screaming and grunting as they ran down the corridor. Dahlia let loose with a barrage of bullets, she looking down the barrel and using it to help her shoot.Chris and Alejandro were shooting away, and one by one the Infected fell. Once the initial onslaught was over, the three stepped from the elevator and the doors closed behind them.

"No turning back now, is there?" Dahlia asked.

"No, there is not." Alejandro responded, and took point. Guns at the ready, they all walked the length of the hall, shooting any Infected that came rushing at them from the patient rooms or from around corners. Doctors, nurses, patients, none of them had managed to escape the Infection. Bodies littered the floor, most looking like they'd been beaten to death. Blood and vomit were all over the floors and walls. Some doors leading into patient rooms rattled on their hinges from the furious beating they were receiving from the other side. "Alejandro! Where's this chick's room?" Chris asked as Dahlia shot off another few rounds. A 'click click click' noise alerted her she was out of ammo in her gun. "I'm out!" She yelped as one of the Infected burst through a door and slammed her against a wall. A loud bang sounded. Blood and brain matter spattered across the floor, and the Infected doctor fell to the tiled floor with half of his head missing. Alejandro's smoking pistol then turned to shoot another Infected, this one in nothing but a paper gown. Chris offered his hand to help Dahlia up, and once they were all on their feet again they took off down the hall past the nurse's station. Chris handed Dahlia a loaded clip, and Dahlia ejected the spent clip and loaded the second. Chris snorted. "Too bad there's no such thing a spent ammo clip fairy... We'd be making bank, baby."

"Stacey! We're coming!" Alejandro shouted, and they ran down the hall and around the corner. They turned the corner and began shooting again, the Infected coming at them from all sides, and they just kept coming. "How many fuckers were there on this floor?" Chris shouted.

Finally, it seemed to end, and bodies were everywhere. In the sudden silence, they could all hear the sounds of someone sobbing from inside one of the patient rooms. "Someone's still alive!" Dahlia approached the door to the patient room, and jiggled the doorknob. It wasn't locked. The other two with her nodded, and took positions on either side of her to allow her safety while helping whoever was on the other side.

Quietly, she opened the door, but was met with an almost completely dark room, the only light coming from a window that didn't have the curtains drawn. Lightning flashed, and in the light she could see a young woman sitting on the floor. She was dressed in a ragged tank top and a pair of shredded pants, and a leather coat lied discarded on the floor near her. She looked like she'd been attacked and her clothing had suffered form it, but she'd at least gotten away. "Sweetie? It's okay, we're here to help you get out of here..." Dahlia spoke in a hushed tone, not wanting to attract unwanted attention.

The woman didn't respond, but instead kept crying. She was haunched over, sobbing. [i]Maybe she's deaf...[/i]

Lightning flashed again, lighting up the woman once more. She looked up, and stopped crying seeing Dahlia. Dahlia stopped cold on seeing the woman completely in the flashing lightning. Her fingers weren't normal. Instead, they were elongulated into bloody claws, and her eyes glowed red. She began growling, and started to stir slowly, moving into a crouching position. The woman was obviously agitated with Dahlia, her presence being in such close proximity. But, she wasn't outright attacking. Dahlia quickly backed away, leaving her alone.

"Where's the person who was crying?" Chris asked once she was safely on the other side of the door.

"That's not a person in there..." Dahlia breathed a sigh of relief. "It's not a human in there... It's something with claws that used to be a human woman. It's one of them..."

The sobbing came from behind the door again, and Chris looked through the slightly cracked door. "So some of them are passive..."

"She started growling at me... And so I left her alone. I think if I stayed she'd have massacred me..."

"Stacey..." Alejandro spoke, and started running down the hall, with the others on his heels. His mind was now solely on his friend. They reached her room, and Alejandro opened the door. "Stacey? Are you in here?"

"Ali? Ali, is that you?" a shaken voice came from the darkness. "Ali! The nurse! She saved me! And then... and then..." A woman came rushing at Alejandro, hugging him tightly and sobbing into his chest. He put his arms around her, and Chris nodded to him. "We need to get out of here. Let's get moving. Dahlia, help her. Alejandro, cover our backs. I'll take point this time." Edited by ExcelExcel

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[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]I was jogging along the beach after my sparring with my trainerâ?¦ I think heâ??s attracted to me or something, donâ??t really mind it though; just minding my own business when a familiar voice makes a slight auditory dent from the music which had me focused on my workout. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]ALI! HEY![/b]â? The bubbly voice sounded slightly muted as I stopped my run, ripped out my earbuds and looked down toward the source of the sound. I smiled as I noticed Miss Greenwood sitting on the sand with her attention transfixed on the sound of the waves slowly making their way to the shore. I take a seat next to her, my unwinding from the workout can wait plus I havenâ??t seen her since the semester ended in May; so why the hell not?[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]I thought Iâ??d be able to find you hereâ?¦[/b]â? The brunette mused as she entwined her hand with mine. â??[b]How so, if you donâ??t mind me asking?[/b]â? My attention begins to shift toward the orange sunset and the galvanised blue that the Atlantic is starting to take with the early signs of the evening. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Yâ??know, the Armani you wear all the time really lingers on you. Even through your sweaty workouts.[/b]â? Greenwood answered with that bubbly laugh as I cautiously sniff myself, wondering if it really does. She rests her head on my shoulder and sighs contentedly; Stacey doesnâ??t want to leave this moment and I donâ??t think I want to either. â??[b]So howâ??s work been going for you, Ali? Any fun stories about the bad guys?[/b]â? She inquires with a natural sense of curiosity. Stacey loves hearing about my line of work, especially when I get into interrogations with the suspects. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Nothing as interesting as the couple who posed as another coupleâ??s kids to scrape their houseboat dry by burning it to the bottom of the seaâ?¦.[/b]â? Stacey whines jovially as I clear my throat, she knows somethingâ??s up though.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]I sense thereâ??s another interestingly tantalising bit you want to share with me, docâ?¦[/b]â?
â??[b]Are you sure you wonâ??t get bored?[/b]â? I ask sincerely, donâ??t want to ruin the moment of almost perfect solitude here with another science fuelled lecture. â??[b]I highly doubt it, doctorâ?¦ Plus the way your sweat mixes with the cologne is actually somewhat appealing to me.[/b]â? I wince at her observation as I began telling her about some sort of particularly interesting viral strain I noticed in some of my latest cadavers. â??[b]Youâ??re kind of cute when you babble about science, doctor.[/b]â? Stacey tells me as I put my left arm around her and pull the young woman in closer to me. We both find ourselves engulfed in a perfect ambiance while the sun sinks behind the horizon, thatâ??s when my friend decides to break the silence.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Ali, thereâ??s something I have to tell youâ?¦[/b]â? Stacey begins, thereâ??s a bit of hesitance in her voice. â??[b]What is it, mi conejo?[/b]â? I reassure her that there isnâ??t anything that would possibly drive me nuts that she could come up with. [/i][/font]
[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Iâ??m going to be leaving Miami, tomorrowâ?¦ For medical reasons.[/b]â? Her voice is confident now as she wraps me into an awkward embrace.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]The heatâ??s getting to you or something? Is it allergies? I can write you a prescri---[/b]â? Iâ??m cut off as she begins again.[/i][/font]
[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Iâ??m going to get my sight back, doctor.[/b]â? She smiles and the anticipation builds within her voice. â??[b]Thatâ??s great, but why are you going home? We could get you scheduled here; I mean what about sc---[/b]â?[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]It just seems like home is the place for me when Iâ??m going to go through with thisâ?¦ I think.[/b]â? She unwraps herself and stands up, holding a hand out for me this time as I spring up from the sand. â??[b]Then why tell me? [/b][/i][b][i]¿[/i][/b][b][i]Usted tiene familia allí, verdad?[/i][/b][i]â? I inquire, slightly confused, while she takes my hand again and begins to walk, I reluctantly follow her. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Not quite, doctorâ?¦ My grandfather is just so busy with running his store that I donâ??t want to become a burden on his popular antiquities businessâ?¦ I was wondering, could you come with me instead? Becauseâ?¦. Umâ?¦[/b]â? Her nerves return once more as she tries to find the right thing to say.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Of course. Cualquier para ti. Mi conejito.[/b]â? I reassure her as she pulls me in for the tightest hug sheâ??s ever given, while the tears begin running down her face.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]Alejandro felt that strong hug from his friend once again as the two held onto each other for a bit of time when Dahlia tapped the doctor on the shoulder; signalling that the bonding would have to wait as the nurse wanted to begin her preliminary check on the brunette for any signs of injury. Although when the two separated from the embrace, Santiago could feel something wrong with his friend. Like she had returned but she just wasnâ??t as he had left her in May.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]DONâ??Tâ?¦ TOUCHâ?¦ ME!!!![/i][/b]â? Greenwood screamed at the blonde which caught the attention of Chris as he swung the door shut, out of fear of being heard from the Infected.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Doc, whatâ??s your friendâ??s problem?![/i][/b]â? The barkeep wondered as he walked up to the three of them, while Stacey yelped and scurried to the back of the room. â??[b][i]No sé, Chrisâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Ali answered as he holstered his pistol, pulled out his flashlight, turned it on and slowly made his way to the scared brunette. â??[b][i]Stacey, itâ??s okayâ?¦ Theyâ??re with me. Theyâ??re myâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Santiago looked back at the two with a bit of warmth. â??[b][i]â?¦ Friends.[/i][/b]â? His light shined into the young womanâ??s eyes and to his surprise the pupils contracted before she put her hands up to protect herself from the florescent beam.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Iâ??ll be dammedâ?¦ It worked.[/i][/b]â? Alejandro chuckled to himself as Stacey made her way into the doctorâ??s arms once again, she sighed comfortably as the doctor slowly worked out of his friendâ??s grip and his assistant tried to begin her check again on their survivor. Stacey whimpered and trembled as Dahlia cautiously began checking for bruises and other injuries.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]So whatâ??s the news, Ali? Can we get her out of hereâ?¦? Possibly without pissing that other woman off again?[/i][/b]â? Chris asked Santiago as the Latino put down the picture frame on her nightstand. It was the two of them, spending time at Santiagoâ??s family owned bar, the smiles on their faces just haunted him. The doctor also noticed an MRI scan on a light up board in her room, which really caught his attention. He ripped the film from the board and began analysing it out loud.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Que la corteza no ir allíâ?¦ Ã?ste se ha rotoâ?¦ Este de aquí, se ha cortadoâ?¦ Más de una vez?[/i][/b]â? Alejandro was pointing a certain bits of her brain which looked frayed. â??[b][i]¿De dónde va esto?[/i][/b]â? He made a circling motion with his flashlight at the bottom of the grey matter; the other two noticed a change in the doctorâ??s voice.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]What is it doctor?[/i][/b]â? Dahlia asked as Stacey ran back to Alejandroâ??s side.
â??[b][i]Yeah, what is it boss?[/i][/b]â? Chris chimed in as he made his way to the door.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Thereâ??s something wrong with this placeâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Alejandro began as he looked into Staceyâ??s eyes. â??[b][i]A map. I saw one. I can help. We can leave, Ali. We can leave.[/i][/b]â? Stacey spoke up, but her voice was more withdrawn, almost a whisper. She took Alejandroâ??s hand in hers and held tightly with a smile on her face.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]They gave you your sight back, Staceyâ?¦ But why did they take a quarter of your grey matter?[/i][/b]â? Santiago wondered as Chris opened the door preparing to head back into the unknown.[/font] Edited by Anakoni Stark

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"A quarter of her brain?" Dahlia asked, and Alejandro nodded. "Si, but why I do not know."

"Ali... We need to go!" Stacey whimpered, tugging on Alejandro's sleeve.Chris looked out into the hall, and motioned for the others to follow him.

"Stacey, I need you to stick with Dahlia, por favor. She'll keep you safe." Alejandro looked down to his friend, who sheepishly let him go and went to Dahlia's side.

"Let's rock." Chris took off running down the hall, his gun readied. The Infected were now sparsely populating the halls, but that didn't make them any less dangerous.The other three followed closely behind, Dahlia ushering Stacey gently along, though at a quick pace. "This way!" Stacey turned suddenly down a side passage, away from the others. "Stacey, wait! It's too dangerous to go off alone!" Dahlia called, taking off after her. The three followed Stacey down the long hall, and then to a heavy metal door leading out onto the emergency stairwell. Behind them, the Infected began beating on the door, but it did not give.

"We need to go!" Stacey repeated, and began making her way down the staircase. They returned to the bottom floor, and exited the stairwell, if only to be met with the man who had come in and had been screaming at all in the emergency room. Stacey suddenly shirked back behind Alejandro as the man began to walk towards them. "You will die here! You will never have salvation! Submit to the end times and pray for your forgiveness from the lord! None shall leave here!"

The man stopped short of them, and reached out to the wall. Dahlia gasped, realizing too late what the man was doing.

The man reached to the wall, and yanked down on the fire alarm. The loud whirring and honking started, and it was nearly deafening.

"You God damn mother ******* asshole!" Chris shouted, unbridled rage in his voice. "Do you realize what you've just done?"

The man began to cackle. "Die here! It is God's will! You will never survive!"

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The sight of the hospital surrounded by police did not fill James with confidence as he approached the doors with his knuckles white from his tight grip on the neck of his baseball bat. He had initially attempted to enter through the third floor parking entrance but it had been barricaded and swarming with police who had turned him away. This confirmed that what had been a safe evacuation point already had the infected running about and could potentially be nothing more than a death trap. If it could get him out of this hell hole alive, he'd run through a pack of the bastards naked in order to make it out.

A thought was floating around in the back of James' mind that he'd probably get his shotgun confiscated if he walked through the front door and he tried to figure out a different plan. But there was no other option, the fire escape was being watched by police and every other door was covered also.

"And I liked this gun too" he muttered under his breath as he approached the doors. Strangely enough he was not stopped as the officers watched him walk through with suspicious glares but nothing else. It was clear that the sudden outbreak was taking its effect on them and tension was thick in the air and he preferred that the zombies be the only ones that had it out to get him.

There was a strange old man stumbling around and yelling randomly about how those within the hospital were sinners who would die as penance. If he had to guess, the man had lost everything to the zombies and had taken it poorly to say the least but was clearly a danger to himself and everybody around him. He could hear the infected on the higher floors who were pounding on walls and doors but there was the distinct sound of gunshots. The old man moved with a surprising speed and almost ran to the stairwell just as it opened. Reaching for his shotgun, James stopped just short of firing it as he saw four relatively normal people slamming it behind them with one of them assisting a very shaken young woman.

And then the screaming started as the old man began to rant at them before suddenly stopping and reaching towards the wall. There was only one possible thing happening, the old man was about to pull the fire alarm. James ran as fast as he could towards the man in an attempt to tackle him before he pulled it but he was too late as the alarm burst into action as the deafening whirring and honking seemed to drive the unseen infected into a frenzy.
There was only one thing going through James' mind as he tackled the old man to the ground in an effort to get some measure of justice for essentially be sentenced to death. That thought was "Running naked through the zombies is sounding much easier now"

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[font=times new roman, times, serif] [i]Today is Friday, December 13[sup]th;[/sup] this is case number 12087615... I begin as I look into the manâ??s opened chest and take a pair of forceps. â??[b]My patientâ??s name is Gabriel De Santo, I found him near the intersection of Biscayne Boulevard and 27[sup]th[/sup] in Midtown; about four clicks west of my last crime sceneâ?¦[/b]â? I begin working my way through the bones of his rib cage with the tweezers and pull out the bullet that lacerated Gabeâ??s lung. The standard nine millimetre bullet, I discard the fragment into an evidence glass and continue my autopsy. â??[b]I see defensive wounds and more lacerations on the manâ??s armsâ?¦[/b]â? I take note of the dark purple marks and cuts then proceed to turn him over also mentioning the faint shoe imprints slightly above the kidneys. As I bring him back around, something catches my attention.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] Mister De Santo has the same damage as the last couple of people who have come to visit my office. Slightly larger lymph nodes and the beginnings of slight erosion to the liver and other major organs, in conjunction with inflammation to the sinus cavities, and bloodshot eyes. Out of curiosity I open up his skull to see ifâ?¦ Yep, most of the occipital lobe is untouchedâ?¦ The temporal lobe seems to be overclocked, like if you took your motherâ??s old computer and gave it to an audiophile who wound up Frankensteining it to run 7.1 Dolby Surround Sound and to top it all off the frontal lobe had begun deteriorating pare mortem. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] This brings up the weirdness up to eleven, since Iâ??ve had four other patients who exhibited the same signs. I wrap the autopsy and leave my examination notes in a separate folder on my cloud drive. I can analyse this when I get home, thereâ??s something thatâ??s jumping the fence and it doesnâ??t seem to want to make any friends. I prepared Gabriel for his trip to the local yard while writing up his death certificate.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]Cause of death? Homicide. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] Maybe itâ??s just a bad coincidence; I had been hearing similar reports from my friends in New Yorkâ?¦ Perhaps this is just some sort of elaborate marketing campaign from a major company or someoneâ??s trying to scare the youngest and brightest mind out of his job. Yeah a joke, letâ??s go with that. Iâ??ve seen the way my boss loathes me and shitâ?¦ Sorry K-Drezâ?¦ Not planning on leaving anytime soon. I wash my hands and leave my morgue, only to hear an announcement over the PA systemâ?¦ A visitor? For me?! I canâ??t imagine who it could be, when my mind starts running through my numerous exes.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]Yikes. Donâ??t want to end up on my own table.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] To my surprise, itâ??s the one and only Miss Greenwood with a bouquet of bright flowers and a cake in a box with the number 26 written on it in red frosting. Standing next to the front desk, wearing this dark red minidress, white heels and a diamond necklace and numerous golden bracelets; all of which compliments her blue grey eyes, slightly curly brown hair and tanned body . I can smell Dior on her now; sheâ??s out to make a loud impression on someone, as many of the other men in the police station notice the beautiful young woman standing around.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]Happy birthday, doctor![/b]â? She exclaims as she places the cake on the nearby front desk and makes her way to me and envelopes me in one of those almost death grip status hugs. I grunt and return the gesture, although I feel quite oldâ?¦ Work took precedence over my own damn birthday; canâ??t believe I forgot! â??[b]Gracias, senorita Greenwood![/b]â? I choke out as she releases me, takes the flowers and hands me the cake while she leaves to my Mustang. I follow her to the car as the locks disengage and she slowly sets into the passenger seat, taking care not to damage the spike lavender and white tulip bouquet. I empty the bigger spare kit in my trunk and place the cake in the box as I close the trunk door and make my way into the driver seat.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]It smells like youâ??ve had a rough day, Ali.[/b]â? Stacey comments as I fire the car up and begin leaving the parking lot.[/i][/font]
[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]More on the odder end of the spectrum, Staceyâ?¦ Just glad I didnâ??t forget my birthday, thanks to a certain someone.[/b]â? I reply when she places her hand on top of my left, which is resting on the stick shift. â??[b]I thought you were suppost to be in Illinois for your surgeryâ?¦[/b]â? I wondered as I brought the car to a stop.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]I didnâ??t want to miss your special dayâ?¦[/b]â? Greenwood almost purrs as she pulls me in close to her.[/i][/font]
[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]My mind is racing as we get caught up in the moment, but I could feel the uncertainty of the morgue discovery nagging at the back of my mind.[/i][/font]


[font=times new roman, times, serif] The warning klaxon blared hysterically as Ali and his two friends raised their pistols to defend themselves, while Stacey stood frozen in place as she seemed to react to something other than the deafening alarm. â??[b][i]STACEY, WHATâ??S WRONG?![/i][/b]â? Chris hollered as he noticed her lower right eyelid twitch. Alejandro took that as a cue to help his closest friend; the doctor shot at the glass casing which housed a firemanâ??s axe. Santiagoâ??s adrenaline numbed the pain of hastily reaching in and ripping the red coloured chopper from the metal box.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Ay, que cosquillas.[/i][/b]â? The Spaniard remarked as he turned back to the group and threw the axe to the brunette, what amazed the remaining four was Staceyâ??s reaction as she caught it. The young brunette weaved the makeshift weapon in her right hand, as if she was twirling a baton and let the upper half fall into her left hand. Greenwood sighed and worked her grip into the wooden handle, while the remaining three looked rather stunned at their newest asset.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Many of them. Headed this way. Some, not so friendly.[/i][/b]â? Stacey answered the team, her voice was drowned out by the roaring alarm but for some reason they could hear the brunette as if she was whispering into their ears.[/font] Edited by Anakoni Stark

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"What do we do about this asshole?" The newcomer asked, still pinning down the insane man.

Chris turned his attention from Stacey to the newcomer and the guy he still had pinned. "What asshole?" He asked coldly, and pointed his gun and pulled the trigger. Blood and brain matter spattered on the floor. The others stared at Chris in shock as he slid the magazine from his gun. As he pulled another from his pants pocket, Stacey was the only one who reacted, smiling her approval. "Bad man's head go boom." She said.

"Yes, Stacey my dear, bad man's head go boom." He repeated. "He won't be getting innocent people killed -or worse, infected- ever again." He slid the magazine into his pistol and returned his attention to the man with the shotgun, who had stood up by now, his assistance no longer needed. "My car is in the parking deck on the fourth level. You're more than welcome to come with, stranger." Chris smiled, his mood abruptly changing. "There's nothing like classic American steel to plow through hordes of the Infected..."

"The name's Jason."

"Mine's Chris. The blonde is Dahlia, the brunette is Stacey, and the hunk of burning Latino love is Alejandro. This fire alarm is going to cause a lot of chaos in the hospital. The Parking Deck is easier to get to if we head back outside. Let's get going."

The five started running down the hallway, heading back to the Emergency Room. A crowd of people suddenly converged through the doors, running away from the exit. "Oh my..." Dahlia spoke. "This doesn't look good."

"Big, mean, and gruesome..." Stacey commented to nothing in particular. Once the people had fled down the hallway, they all could hear the sounds of gunshots from various types of guns and the screams of the agitated Infected. A loud, baritone roar sounded out, and a squad car came tumbling end over end through the doors, coming to rest mere inches from Chris. "****!" he cried, staring in disbelief. "What the hell has the strength to toss a car?"

"We're about to find out..." Jason said, and raised his shotgun. They moved around the squad car, and out into the emergency room parking lot. Chris saw that there was an absolutely massive Infected going after the police, punching cars and smacking officers left and right. "****, that thing is huge! Move it! We don't have the firepower to deal with it!"

They started running along the side of the building, the Infected coming after them in droves from every direction. The shotgun added to the Survivors' weaponry was a blessing. Stacey, however, moved with a grace that Chris had never seen, in a sort of macabre dance of death.

"Stacey! You're falling behind!" Alejandro called, and she came running after them, her ax slicing and dicing the Infected along the way. Chris ran to the parking deck entrance, and took an immediate right into the stairwell heading up to the fourth floor. The Infected, no longer having them to deal with, converged on the Police trying in vain to keep the Infected from entering into the hospital. They headed up, staircase by staircase, exiting into the parking deck's fourth level. Chris breathed a sigh of relief. "The Infected aren't up here. This will make things easier, at least until they hear my engine."

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They ran along the center aisle between the various cars, heading for Chris's car. "Up there! The Firebird!"

Chris pulled a set of keys from his pocket, and shoved it in the lock. "We're about to be swarmed. This puppy is loud and proud." he commented on his car, and sighed. "While usually that's a good thing, this isn't the time for it." Climbing into the car, he unlocked the passenger door and slid the seat forward to let Alejandro, Stacey, and Dahlia into the backseat. Once everyone was inside the car, Dahlia looked through the back window and out into the still raging storm. "Chris, how fast do you think you can safely go?"

"Depends on how hard it's raining. I have some good tread on my tires, I just bought them all about a month ago. Why?"

Dahlia smiled. "Because we don't need to crash and die a fiery death."

"We have enough to contend with, don't worry." He assured her, looking rather disturbed at her bubbly attitude towards death. "I used to be a racer. I think I can handle a little rain, especially in this hot honey." He patted the dashboard of his car, smiling. "Come on, sugar, let's get through this." His smile faded, and he became serious as he slid the key into the ignition. Out of the corner of his eye, he watched Jason. "You shoot, I drive. Agreed?"

"Agreed." Jason rolled down the window, and positioned himself to hang out of it.

"Everyone ready? It's going to be a bumpy ride." Everyone nodded, and Chris turned the key. The old girl roared to life, her engine daring the Infected to trifle with her. Chris shifted gears and the pretty lady rolled out. Chris kept his speed up, heading down the parking deck and maintaining his speed as he swerved the classic around corners with ease. The Infected were sparse, but once they heard the engine of Chris's car they came running, like moths to the flame. Within a minute, Chris was ahead of a horde, unable to really get his baby up to speed. Infected came running at him from the front, and he sent them flying through the air. Dahlia hunched down, closing her eyes from the carnage and her hands over her ears, tears in her eyes. "Not people... not people... not people..." she chanted to herself. She felt every thump, every crunch, and every snap the Infected made as Chris mercilessly drove through and over the Infected. Jason's shotgun could be heard above it all, aiming for any Infected who got too close to the sides of the car. Chris reached the bottom of the parking deck, and slammed through the toll booth's wooden bar. He swung out onto the street and floored it. Opening her eyes, Dahlia breathed a sigh of relief.

"Where to now?" Chris asked, concentrating on the road in front of him and swerving around abandoned cars and various other hazards."

"I know where the evacuation points are!" Dahlia smiled. "Northwoods is another evacuation center, and we are headed in that direction..."

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[font=times new roman, times, serif]Alejandro found himself staring out the window to pass the time as the gang made their way through the quickly deteriorating small town. The amount of hysteria he got caught up in with his new friends couldâ??ve been considered maddening to some, like Greenwood, but to Santiago he felt as if they had just chipped the tip of the iceberg from hell that was known to the public as [i]The Green Flu Epidemic[/i]. Alejandro looked back into the passenger seating to see that Stacey had fallen asleep with her head lying against the centre seat, which to him looked rather painful. Santiago peeled off his coat and covered the brunette with it; since it looked like days since her last decent outfit, the young woman sighed contentedly and swayed over to the doctor, where her head rested more comfortably on his shoulder. Stacey instinctively grabbed for Alejandroâ??s hand and a smile formed over her sleepy face. â??[b][i]So who exactly are you, doctor? Why are you here?[/i][/b]â? Dahlia looked over at the two who seemed to be oblivious to the chaos outside the turbulently wet ride.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Me llamo es Alejandro Santiagoâ?¦ But you guys already knew that.[/i][/b]â? The other two men looked into the rearview mirror for a split second to acknowledge that they were also listening; the Spaniard cleared his throat before continuing. â??[b][i]Itâ??s simpleâ?¦ Why Iâ??m hereâ?¦[/i][/b]â? His eyes fell onto the young woman who sat between him and the nurse. â??[b][i]â?¦ Her family isnâ??t around much and for some reason I turned out to be the only sort of constant in her life while she was at the University.[/i][/b]â? Alejandro hesitated slightly as an uneven breath left him.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Wait, youâ??re here because you met her in a class? That doesnâ??t sound quite right, manâ?¦ Unless you two areâ?¦ And whoâ??s idea was it to bring a cop along for the ride?![/i][/b]â? It was Jamesâ?? turn to chime in since he had met the group; he also had noticed the police badge that hung around Alejandroâ??s neck. â??[b][i]Oh. Of course not, dude. Sheâ?¦ Isnâ??t my type. Iâ??m actually a scientist first and a cop second, Jamesâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Santiago lied right through his teeth about his feelings for the 22 year old and he could feel it eating away at him immediately as the brunette stirred slightly. â??[b][i]So what ARE you looking for, doctor? If you donâ??t mind me asking?[/i][/b]â? Chris asked the Spaniard with a bit of flirting masked by the curiosity in his voice. Alejandro didnâ??t want to show his weakness off this early in the game to his new friendsâ?¦ [i]Who knows? They could be all plotting together to stab me in the back when Iâ??m not looking and they couldâ?¦[/i] His thought was cut short as he felt Staceyâ??s grip tighten slightly on his hand. â??[b][i]Iâ??m looking for answersâ?¦ To this virus, how the town worksâ?¦ I mean ¿Por qué coño hacen los restarauntes cierran tan temprano?[/i][/b]â? The group turned to him in a state of confusion as the doctor brought his palm to his face before he answered the question with honesty. â??[b][i]Most importantly, I want to know what theyâ??ve done to the girl y por qué lo hacían.[/i][/b]â? The other three could sense the minor anger buried within the doctorâ??s voice while Stacey stirred once again.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] [i]â??[b]Well. I can tell you Iâ??m glad that youâ??re one of our candidates that passed the initial screening, Miss Greenwood.[/b]â? The interviewer stated as Stacey sat across from him, she was taking in the sights. Her vision was restored no less than 48 hours prior to their meeting, it seemed a lot easier than the young brunette wouldâ??ve thought. They had managed to give her perfect 20/20 vision in a quick operation but she found herself focusing on a stain on the other manâ??s white lab coat. â??[b]Thereâ??s red on your jacket misterâ?¦[/b]â? Greenwood replied quietly with a bit of fear in her voice. She knew that what they had done to her was an atrocity. The interviewer looked down at his jacket and shook his head in disbelief to see that the girl was lost in her own thoughts, and began writing on the pad. [/i][/font]




[center][font=times new roman, times, serif][i]******[/i][/font][/center]
[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]I donâ??t think I was the right one for this experimental treatment, sir.[/b]â? Stacey began as she twiddled her thumbs and the interviewer picked up his pen and began to write about another test subject. â??[b]Of course you were the right one, Staceyâ?¦ We needed a severely debilitated subject or theâ?¦ Higher upsâ?¦ Wouldnâ??t have funded this amazing surgery.[/b]â? The interviewer answered as Staceyâ??s gaze fell down to her thumbs and she sighed. The interviewer began the dayâ??s therapy session as he pushed a button on the desk. A soft beep echoed into the room as the interviewer began with the dayâ??s question. â??[b]How is your life going so far, Miss Greenwood?[/b]â? [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]Iâ?¦Umâ?¦ I-I-I canâ??t sleep. Thereâ??s somethingâ?¦ Something wicked this way comes.[/b]â? Stacey started as the interviewer nodded and wrote on the pad, Stacey ran her hands along her face before she continued. â??[b]Can you take it out? The thing thatâ??s bothering my sleep.[/b]â? The brunette scratched at her head before the interviewer answered. â??[b]Weâ??ve had the orderlies look into your room, Stacey andâ?¦ They say thereâ??s nothing to report.[/b]â? She could sense a change in the manâ??s voice when he said report; this irritated the young woman as she snapped at him.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]I donâ??t understand! Thereâ??s no mission! I donâ??t get it! Iâ??m notâ?¦[/b]â? The young girl was interrupted by disturbing thoughts of what the orderlies did to her when no one was watching. She was on the verge of tears as the mental image left her when she spoke up. â??[b]Alejandro Santiago. When can I see him again?[/b]â? Her curiosity couldnâ??t drown out the dread in her voice.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]Youâ??ll be able to see himâ?¦ Eventually.[/b]â? The interviewer answered with a slight laugh.[/i][/font]



[center][font=times new roman, times, serif][i]******[/i][/font][/center]
[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]Whereâ??s Aliâ?¦ Mister Santiago? I want to see him. He needs to know.[/b]â? Staceyâ??s mind had splintered itself to keep her safe from the experimentation which was far from ethical in anyoneâ??s books. It turns out that their test not only gave her vision back but also amplified her remaining senses, among other things. â??[b]He needs to knowâ?¦ A-A-About the things you do here. They arenâ??t very nice. No, no, no, no they arenâ??t very nice.[/b]â? The young girlâ??s voice shook as she stood up and began pacing back and fourth as the interviewer nodded again and continued to write. â??[b]Iâ??m sorry I canâ??t let you see him at this time, Miss Greenwood. The superiors wouldnâ??t like thatâ?¦[/b]â? The interviewer began as he pressed a button on the desk, a buzz droned throughout the room and Stacey began to pick up her stride as she walked back and fourth even quicker. â??[b]â?¦ Although, I think this Santiago character isnâ??t realâ?¦ Your imagination is running wild Stac[b][i]â??[/i][/b][/b]â? The interviewer began his lie which seemed to keep the young woman in line for some time after the operation. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]NO! YOUâ??RE LYING TO ME! YOUâ??VE LIED TO OTHER PEOPLE TOO![/b]â? Stacey screamed as the three burly orderlies made their way to the opened door followed by a middle aged dark haired nurse who spoke up from the doorway. â??[b]Staceyâ?¦ Itâ??s Beth. Remember me?[/b]â? The older woman began as she made her way into the room toward the frightened girl with one of the orderlies holding a syringe following close behind the nurse. â??[b]NO! D-D-D-onâ??t come any closer![/b]â? Stacey backed away to the other end of the room when the interviewer raised his hand to signal for the orderlies and the nurse to stay still, he could sense another breakthrough coming along. [/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i] â??[b]You have blood, on your jacket mister! Canâ??t you see it?![/b]â? Stacey pointed angrily at the interviewer while the others looked over at the interviewer and shook their heads. â??[b]What about Robert Yensin? Wasnâ??t he the one who died on the table before I got here?[/b]â? The name resonated with everyone in the room before the brunette continued. â??[b]He died in your care, the same thing happened to two other women and another man, much longer before then! What were you doing to them?! What have you done to me?! What is this mission youâ??re talking about?! Doctor Santiago will f-f-find out about thisâ?¦ Youâ??re-youâ??re all monsters.[/b]â? Her breakthrough only marked beginning of events to come that she would be a part of.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]When the interviewer clicked his pen, the orderlies continued to close in on her. The next few seconds spelled death for almost everyone in the room as Stacey managed to incapacitate the syringe holding man with the sharp needle, and swiftly moved to the next orderly by breaking his ankles and right arm in one fluid motion. The third orderly fell to the ground with a tongue depressor lodged into his throat which seemed to fly out of Bethâ??s pocket as she ran out of the interrogation room. Stacey turned her attention to the interviewer as she took the pen off the table and clicked the writing utensil twice. The interviewer groaned as he slumped into his chair with the pen sticking out of his eye socket as Stacey walked out of the room and back to her holding cell. The alarms began ringing and people started to run in a panic, back to their own rooms or wherever their assistance was needed. On her way she noticed two cameras on opposite walls she looked directly into them.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif][i]â??[b]I can see you.[/b]â? The brunette whispered as she casually walked back into her room.[/i][/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]The group was back to their grind as they drove to the mall; James was listening to the radio making sarcastic remarks toward the radio talk show host which proved to be of slight amusement to Chris when Alejandro decided to speak up again. â??[b][i]Senorita Severest, when I first met youâ?¦ Couldnâ??t help but overhear that you had students caught up in this mess? Are you a professor at the local community college or something?[/i][/b]â? The Latino asked the blonde which made her blush as she buttoned up her coat partially.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Oh, no doctorâ?¦ Iâ??m just a nurse at the local high schoolâ?¦[/i][/b]â? She answered with a slight laugh when Alejandro turned his attention to Chris. â??[b][i]¡Oye, Chris! Este coche es realmente bonito! Whereâ??d you get the bird?[/i][/b]â? The doctor asked when the red head looked into the rearview mirror. â??[b][i]Wellâ?¦ Thank you for the flattery, doc. I got lucky at an auction and sheâ??s been with me for quite sometime.[/i][/b]â? The waiter had answered with a smile. â??[b][i]Ehhâ?¦ Iâ??m pretty sure my 700 pony Mustang could probably put up a good fight against her.[/i][/b]â? The doctor mused as a laugh escaped from Chris. Denbo couldnâ??t believe that a surgeon was into cars; here he thought that the Latino was more into more traditional European things like opera or tennis. Alejandro then turned his attention to James.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]From what I can tell, Jamesâ?¦ You own a local tavern around here. The scar probably says that youâ??ve gotten yourself involved with some of those fights in your watering hole. Your speech is more sarcastic than mine on a Tuesday; I might as well be a wet napkin while youâ??re the turbine engine. You probably hate a lot of things too. Like elevators, perhaps?[/i][/b]â? James looked back at the doctor in a bit of surprise as he tossed the tea towel to Santiagoâ??s wounded hand. â??[b][i]Well, youâ??re right about most of it, docâ?¦ What are you a shrink or something?[/i][/b]â? The bartender asked while Santiago wrapped his bloody hand in the towel.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Yes, why yes I am. I use my shrink talk to get my suspects to open upâ?¦[/i][/b]â? James shot a look of discontent to Alejandro before he finished his sentence. â??[b][i]â?¦ And I donâ??t make any accusations until the science either sets them free or scores them residency at the local encierro.[/i][/b]â? Alejandro didnâ??t notice the smug smile that Chris had on his face when the doctor spoke from his native language. â??[b][i]Well I guess I can trust you, doc.[/i][/b]â? The bartender replied with a smirk when Staceyâ??s scream broke the groupâ??s bonding time.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]¡Despierta, mi conejto![/i][/b]â? Alejandro yelled as he could feel his friendâ??s grip almost crush his hand. Stacey looked around wildly as she hyperventilated, coming down from the fearful high her sleep had brought upon her. â??[b][i]Whatâ??s the matter, Stacey?[/i][/b]â? Dahlia inquired to the startled brunette.[/font]
[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]The other womanâ?¦ In the hospitalâ?¦ I could hear her.[/i][/b]â? Greenwood began as she took the nurseâ??s hand with her left, she sang quietly to the group.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]If we stay here long enoughâ?¦ We can play with Bloody Mary. She can chase us through the dark... Activate our nerve endings.[/i][/b]â?[/font] Edited by Anakoni Stark

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Dahlia looked at Stacey, and squeezed her hand a little. "You're safe with us. The woman in the hospital... did she hurt you?"

"She was sad... she couldn't control herself anymore..." Stacey looked out through the window of the Firebird, and sighed. "She didn't deserve it..."

Stacey mumbled something inaudible and fell asleep once more. In her sleep, tears fell down her cheeks. Dahlia reached up and moved Stacey's hair from her face, and shook her head. "The poor thing. Alejandro, you said in the hospital that a part of her brain had been removed. Do you think it's affected her mental stability?"

Alejandro closed his eyes."Si, senorita. She no longer has any control over her emotions due to what was removed."

"Do you know why they'd do something like that?" Chris asked, glancing into the rearview mirror. Alejandro only shook his head. "No. Stacey had no need of such things being done to her."

Chris shook his head and spoke again. "I think they did a lot more to her than just shave off some grey matter. Did you see what she did back at the hospital? She's dangerous, no doubt."

Dahlia nodded, and began checking Stacey's pulse. It was up a bit, though nothing to be concerned about. "She won't hurt any of us, no matter how much she's been affected. And don't ever think she would. She's still a sweet girl." Dahlia ran her hand along Stacey's forehead and through her hair, and Stacey stirred again. She shifted from Alejandro's shoulder to Dahlia's, and smiled. "Safe..." Stacey mumbled in her sleep, snuggling against Dahlia. She smiled, and continued running her hand along Stacey's head.

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[font=times new roman, times, serif] The doctor roused from his short nap when he heard his name being called. â??[b][i]â?¦ Paging Alejandro Santiagoâ?¦ Earth to Doctor Santiago, are you in there doc?[/i][/b]â? It was Chris calling to him, shaking his leg, to let him know that they had arrived at the Northwood parking lot; the doctor rubbed his eyes and yawned slightly with a weak smile on his face, the smile faded quickly as he looked out the window to notice a small crowd of Infected scattered throughout the parking area. â??[b][i]Just what we needed, a pre black Friday crowdâ?¦[/i][/b]â? The doctor mused as the five of them began making their way out of the car.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] A decent amount of the undead were packed around the front entrance of the mall, banging savagely against the door, their screams could be heard from the considerable distance where the team had parked. â??[b][i]Wellâ?¦ Going through the front door doesnâ??t seem like a good idea, mis amigosâ?¦[/i][/b]â? The doctor pointed out the obvious, which earned him a light punch on the arm from James. â??[b][i]This is a mallâ?¦ Theyâ??ve got to have a few more entry points right?[/i][/b]â? Dahlia wondered out loud when they noticed that the hoarde around the door turned to see the team standing in front of their car. â??[b][i]That isnâ??t a good sign guys, we need to move![/i][/b]â? James demanded as Stacey broke out into a mad dash to the side of the building while the horde made their way to the group. The four ran after the brunette as it seemed like Greenwood knew where she was heading. The band began firing off shots to the crowd behind them and the infected sprinting toward them, except for the Doctor whose magnum had gone missing from his pocket.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] [i]Esto es no buenoâ?¦[/i] Santiago thought as he could hear Severest scream behind him. She was pinned down by what looked to be a man wearing a dark track suit who was beating on her. â??[b][i]Definitely not good at allâ?¦[/i][/b]â? The doctor wondered out loud when he noticed that Greenwood had stolen Aliâ??s magnum from his jacket, he looked over at James, who was busy blasting away at the undead around the door. â??[b][i]Jim! The bat! GIVE ME THE BAT![/i][/b]â? Santiago yelled to the bartender who tossed the bat to the doctor. Alejandro caught the wooden object as he ran to the aide of Severest. When out of nowhere the remaining three became two as Chris was pulled away from the team by a long dark tongue that dragged him into an abandoned car. â??[b][i]A LITTLE HELP SOMEBODY![/i][/b]â? Denbo called out to James and Stacey, the bartender was going to help the waiter but the college student beat him to the punch as she began running toward the source of the makeshift noose.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]â??[b][i]Jimmy! Door, keep it clear![/i][/b]â? Greenwood called out behind her as she stood a few feet from the man who had boils all over the upper half of his body, with his incredibly long tongue pulling taut out of his mouth. â??[b][i]The doctor says smoking is bad for healthâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Greenwood mused as she pulled out Santiagoâ??s magnum and unloaded all six shells into the manâ??s head right between the eyes, without flinching as the infected man exploded into a cloud of smoke, and his tongued spewed from his mouth. She then made her way back to Chris and helped him up while covering his back as they made their way to the entrance. [/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif]The doctor ran over to the hooded man and used the momentum of his running to inflict more pain on his swing. â??[b][i]Take me out to the ball gameâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Santiago sang out as the bat came in contact with the manâ??s head with a sickening crack. The hooded figure emitted a yelp of pain as he was sent flying across the parking lot; the hooded figure looked back at Santiago and Severest, made a screeching noise and leapt to safety but what threw the two of them off was the man pounced away like a frog on cocaine instead of getting up and running off. [/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Thanks, docâ?¦[/i][/b]â? Dahlia sighed as she was pulled up and she took point for the two of them as they ran back to the group. As they regrouped, James opened a door and the four rushed into the mall while the Infected closed in on them. The doctor was the last one in and he sealed the exit with a nearby bench.[/font]

[font=times new roman, times, serif] â??[b][i]Chrisâ?¦ Frenching on the first dateâ?¦ Not good.[/i][/b]â? Stacey mused as the five of them sat on a separate bench away from the door as the Infected pounded away but the doors would not give. Greenwood then looked at Santiago and a blushing smile came across her face. â??[b][i]It seems that the nurse was right about you Ali... You are cute.[/i][/b]â? while she handed the magnum back to Alejandro who gave her a stern look of disapprovement, which quickly turned into a smirk and a slight laugh.[/font] Edited by Anakoni Stark

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Dahlia sighed, and stood up, if only to trip over her long skirt from her heels snagging it. "Oh,, that's just peachy!" She yelled out in anger over ripping a hole in her skirt. Chris sighed, and kneeled beside her. "That skirt wasn't really made for running in, wasn't it?" Chris reached down and yanked the skirt by the hem to above her thigh.

"What are you, crazy? That's Declaren!" She yiped. Chris shook his head, musing. "What's more important, your clothes or your life?"

Dahlia huffed in a breath, thinking of a response, actually judging between the two. "THEY BOTH ARE!" She cried. Chris only shook his head. "We're in a mall now you know. Lot's of clothing here.... So what are you complaining for?"

Dahla stopped her angry outburst and turned her head to the mall, as if only now realizing the meaning of those exact words. "Oh yeah, we kind of are, huh?" She sniffed. But, where is everybody?" she asked out loud.

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ACHIEVEMENT! Knocked out of the Park!

Chris pointed with his gun. "There. There's one of them."

A man staggered into view, into the Mall's shining lights. He had blood coming from his ears, and he sat crouching down clutching his head. He suddenly began vomiting profusely. "Looks like all the other people might have made it out of here, or to the roof for helocopter flights out of here. But, first, I say we hit the Grand Liquors. It should be in this wing of the building. We could make some molotovs and really light the place up should the zombies come crashing in."

"Firebombs?" Dahlia asked. "Setting them on fire? Won't they smell like burnt meat?" She wrinkled her nose at the thought.

"Well, there will be plenty, and there is a sporting goods store around here... not to mention with a gun store. But, I say we check the roof first before making any definite plans. After hitting the store, of course. The better armed we are the better."

"Do you hear that?" Jason asked, pointing down the corridor. The faint sounds of sobbing could be heard drifting through the air. The doctor nodded. Chris shook himself. "Well then, shall we? I think the crying is coming from just around the corner. If we leave her alone then she should stay passive, right? Edited by Inuyasha Fandom

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"Yes... I think so." Dahlia answered. She sighed, and stood up. The crying bothered her, and there was nothing that could be done to help the poor woman.

"So, where to?"

Chris peered around the bench, down the long hall. "Five stores down, to the right." He looked to the doctor. "Think you can keep Stacey out of harm's way? Or is the the one who should be protecting our backs?"

"Si, la seniorita is safe with me."

"Good to hear. Now, the sporting goods store is at the end of one of these hallways, and I'm not sure which one. There should be signs in the center courtyard pointing to it."

Dahlia readied herself, and stood fast with just her pistol. Looking around, she saw a mop bucket with the mop still in it. "Hey, why don't we use melee weapons and sneak through the Mall? We won't alert any zombies in here and make them all come running."

"The blonde is smart." Stacey quipped, and Chris shook his head. "That's a pretty good idea, actually."

The Survivors looked around, and there was another mop and broom nearby, as well as some bathrooms down a corridor. A 'Sorry, closed for maintenance' sign hung across the door. "Hey, I think there might be a pipe wrench in there..." Chris said, and headed into the bathrooms. "Eureka!" He shouted. "There's some lead pipes in here, as well as a wrench. Who wants the wrench and pipes?"

Walked that way, into the ladies room. Chris was picking up several pipes and a wrench from the floor, a happy look on his face. "We got some nice blunt objects, don't we?"

"I'll take the wrench." Chris handed the pipe to her and she swung it around a few times to get used to it. "My, this can do some damage to a human skull..." she contemplated out loud. Jason managed a smile. "That's the point. A nice heavy blow and we put these people out for good."

"Oh, yes, I suppose you're right, after all." Dahlia nodded her being ready, and began walking down the corridor through the nearly empty mall. Clothing stores and an abandoned pretzel place loomed around them, their lights still shining.

"The mall must have back up power generators..." Dahlia realized. "I guess that's good for us."

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