Day 9

Making our way further south has been fairly easy the past day or so. Keeping ahead of the Undead has been easy as well. I don’t think we’ve even seen one since crossing the channel between Lake Huron and Lake St. Clair. Despite our lack of seeing the Undead, we know they are behind us, slowly making their way in their never-ending parody of a putrefied parade. We’ve managed to make good time, skirting around the highly urban areas in Michigan State; trying to evade as much notice as possible. We are finally starting to see some movement of people but it’s nothing like what we witnessed coming out of Toronto and the surrounding suburbs. We’ve been talking a lot about the mass exodus of Toronto in the past 12 hours. Talking about how we haven’t seen hardly a soul make it as far as we have. Wondering what route others may have taken. Then it occurs to you, did some just stop, thinking that they had gone far enough? Did others just give up moving forward and allow themselves to be absorbed into the masses of the Undead? It’s heart wrenching to think that people could just lie down to accept a fate worse than death like that but in the face of something so pervasively evil who could blame them?

We decided it was time to make better time. There was just no way that we were going to get through the US without some form of transportation so we ‘borrowed’ a 4×4 truck from a long-term parking facility and hoped it would help get us as far south as possible. We figured that travelling in the truck would make us less conspicuous and a lot more protected against the Undead and the possibility of piracy. It also gave us the huge advantage of moving at night, something we’d been unable to do on foot, as long as the roads remained clear ahead of us. Did I mention we might even be able to sleep a little more soundly? Sleep was something in short supply with us and being able to sleep two at a time in a protected space was like giving candy to a bunch of kids. It was like we’d won the lottery or something.

We were trying to figure out who would get the first sleep shift when Ben noticed something odd off to the west in a field. A few sheep were acting strangely and pressing themselves so forcefully up against their fencing that it looked like they were going to break through it. Bob pulled the truck over as both Ben and I got out our Binoculars and focused in on the sheep, noting the heavy breathing and panicked looks on their normally vacant faces. Movement caught my eye just to the left and I noticed that the rest of the field appeared to be littered with gory carcasses. My first thought was of a predator like a coyote but the longer I stared the more my mind began to focus on the real culprit. My blood ran cold as I reached out and touched Ben’s arm. His only words were “My God…”. The last few sheep were gone in mere minutes, consumed by the voracious appetites of the swarm of chipmunks.

Undead f*&king chipmunks.

Forget the cute little furry friends you talk to in your backyard; these were die-hard, eat the flesh right off your bones critters. And once done with the sheep, the swarming mass of them started to head in our direction.

Bob put the car back into gear as Max and I made sure that all the vents and windows in the truck were closed tightly. The swarm moved quickly, much faster than any ‘human’ Undead we’d ever seen. They broke out onto the road behind us keeping a fairly good pace, Bob only being able to go so fast on the broken dirt road. Up ahead we could see a stop sign, a level meeting of two roads and we could see for a few kilometres in each direction. It was a safe bet that we would be able to run the stop sign and not risk being overrun by them.

In the distance coming from the west I noticed a yellow school bus approaching the intersection. Focusing through my binoculars I could see the open windows with the small hands hanging out to feel the wind. See the innocent, joyful faces of the children probably on their way home from school. Hastily judging speed and distance, it was obvious that the bus was going to get to the intersection prior to our truck. Looking behind us I could see that the swarm was gaining ground on us with each passing moment.

We had a decision to make: blow through the stop sign and hope for the best, sacrificing those innocent kids to the horde, or slow down and let the mass of rodents overtake is, hoping that the school bus was not going to turn in our direction at the intersection.

There really was no discussion. We all knew what we had to do. While we all wanted to survive, to outlast the infection, we knew that we could not sacrifice a bus load of innocent children to do so. We had the means to possibly fight our way out of an encounter with the Undead chipmunks but we knew that those children did not.

Our collective mind made up, Bob started to slow the truck down, applying the brake. Through the back window I could see the ravenous horde getting closer. It was a stunning sight to see the solid, teeming mass of bloodied fur almost float towards us. And then we were still, the car having come to a complete stop.

We all unsheathed our hunting knives, getting ready for the moment that we would have to fight. Knowing in our minds that one bite would be enough to infect us. Enough to turn one of us into one of them. Within a few seconds, we could hear the sounds of tiny nails on the car, not unlike the sound of nails on a chalkboard. It started to get darker in the car as the swarm covered us. Through the windows you could see their little undead faces pressed up hard against the glass. Their beady little eyes boring into you. It was truly terrifying, those moments where we stared into the faces of hell.

And then as quickly as they were upon us, they moved on. Bob had left the motor running on the truck effectively sealing off most of the engine cavity from them. That was probably what saved us to be perfectly honest.

Or perhaps it was the fact that the bus had stopped just to the east of the intersection in order to let a little girl with blond pigtails disembark. The horde in its entirety was now moving towards that school bus and that little girl. All we could do was watch in absolute horror as the young girl noticed the swarm coming towards her. Watching those little pigtails flying out behind her as her too big backpack shifted on her back as she ran. Ran for her young life.

The mass of undead chipmunks split. Some chased the girl, and the others aimed for the bus loaded with prey. The young girl was knocked down; her terrified screams a warning signal to the driver of the bus who stopped to see what had happened. And then the bus with all of its open windows became a feeding ground for them. The sound was terrible, heartbreaking, and sickening. Not wanting to watch any further, Bob accelerated hard and blew through the intersection.

And we just drove. Farther and farther away. The sounds of the day haunting us.

We had no idea that the infection could jump species. It was something that we had never even considered. How do you protect yourself against an Undead animal world? The discovery terrified us to the core of our very beings. The game had definitely changed at this point. It’s time for everyone to wake up and get moving before it’s too late. There will be no sleep for us again tonight. Not with this hanging over our heads.

Please pray for survival…

The Next Day

2 thoughts on “Day 9

  1. Undead chipmunks? Holy Crap! That makes you wonder…undead grizzles? Undead dogs or cats? Lord, can you imagine your family pet suddenly turning on you with a mindless hunger? And I need to sleep tonight! You’re a terrible person…sick…demented…what a great story!

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