Day 10

Reports have flooded the local affiliate news station of a bus of school kids that have been massacred by what is being described only as unknown assailants. The local communities are understandably shocked and horrified by what they assume is senseless violence. There are clips of concerned citizens all over the internet lamenting the degree of violence and their concern for their own children. No seems to know or understand what it was that committed the acts of atrocity and all of the authorities commented on the extreme mutilated states of the bodies. There are also related links to the herds of farm animals that appear to have been targeted by the same people. Now that the community is facing an unknown assailant or assailants, they seem to want to mobilize to counteract something; they just don’t know what…

If only they realized that their unknown assailants were in fact a horde of Undead chipmunks. It’s scary to think that no one will likely know what it was that really attacked those children and the animals. And if they do figure it out, their death will likely follow quickly. Those little undead things are fast and they don’t look like they’re stopping anytime soon. I would hate to see them in a highly urbanized setting. They would decimate the population in a matter of hours.

We’ve kept moving south and a bit more quickly knowing what is behind us. Every house, farm, school, church, or building of any kind that we pass makes me think about is the fact that these people could be the next victims of the mass of deadly carcasses. There is a part of you that wants to stop, that wants to warn them all of what is coming but you know that stopping could potentially mean your own death. There is no telling how close the swarm is behind us or if they are even moving in the same southerly direction. And there is the potential that the horde is growing larger as more and more chipmunks as well as other small rodents and mammals become infected. The thought chills me to my marrow and fills me with a sense of despair.

I don’t feel much like relating the day to you tonight. Not after describing the events of yesterday to you last night. Or after seeing the videos and photographs on the web. Perhaps it’s time for you to learn about another one of our group. Telling one of our stories might be a bit cathartic for me at this point. A quick step away without actually stepping away…

Ben grew up an orphan; a product of the child welfare system. He was bumped around to numerous foster homes and as a result all he ever dreamt about was escape. Escape from his current room. Escape from his current foster house. Escape from his current city. Escape from his life. He had no family to turn to and very few friends that he would choose to trust.

His love for maps and cartography developed on those dark and lonely days. He would go to his local library and study them for hours. Visit the local planning office to view what used to be in an area and what is planned to sit on top of it in the future.

Knowing that his only way to make a better future for himself was to work as hard as he could in school and make an escape. And he did, putting himself through medical school on full scholarships. One would have thought that he might have chosen to be a cartographer but his desire to help people took him in the direction of medicine. He was lucky enough to be one of the success stories of the child welfare system.

He was ending a night shift that morning that they brought Brooks VanReit into the ER at St. Mike’s to be treated. He wasn’t assigned to treat him so he luckily didn’t have direct contact with Patient Zero before or after his death but he knew that once the corpse reanimated that it was time for him to leave. His view from the nurse’s station only reinforced his desire to get out fast.

Ben tried to talk his partner Kevin, a nurse in the Neonatal ICU to leave with him but there was just no convincing him to leave his post. Besides, at that point there really wasn’t an issue; the word around the rest of the hospital was that a riot had broken out. The alarms were sounding so most of the doctors, nurses and support care workers thought it was best just to stay where they were, out of the fire so to speak.

Knowing that there was no convincing Kevin once his mind was made up, he left his love at the epicentre and rode his bike through the city to their condo. Once there, he collected all of his maps, his compass and his satellite GPS and headed out to the rally point; Max’s house. He also packed a small bag of essentials; some clothes and his Glock. The gun was a recent gift from Steve, my husband. The two had grown close since Ben had saved Steve’s life a few years ago after getting shot while on duty.

Along the way, he could see the panic starting to build in the streets. People were reacting to the news that someone had died and then seemingly come back to life. Only he wasn’t alive, and he was attacking people and then those people were dying and then coming back to life and causing a terrible chain reaction of irreversible events.

On his way to Max’s house, he got a panicked call from Kevin at the hospital. He needed and wanted help to get out; the hospital was under siege from the Undead. How it had happened so quickly no one really knows. Ben knew going back was certain death. He also knew that he had given Kevin the opportunity to leave when things were still relatively calm, if not disorganized. Then there was the unknown factor: Ben could go back to save the love of his young life but there was no way to know for certain that once he got to the hospital and then into the NICU that Kevin would still be among the living. Forget trying to figure out how he was going to get in there without coming face to face with any number of the Undead. Ben told Kevin he was coming to get him and then disconnected the call.

He had no intention of going back to save him, to do so was fool hardy and a death sentence; he just knew that he couldn’t say the words out loud.

Ben made it to Max’s in record time.

So please don’t wait until it’s too late. Allow yourself a chance at survival… I wish those of you on a similar journey Godspeed.

The Next Day

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