"Uuuuhhhng" I yawned stretching my arms and back. I looked around stupidly before remembering I had stayed with a friend last night. My friends name was Hunter we had been friends since the third grade. We were two of the bigger kids in our freshmen class. He was about 5'8 and I was about an inch taller. It was 5:30 a.m. and his parents were just getting up to wake me, Hunter and his brother Ray up to get ready for school.
Damn accursed Mondays.
"Wake up boys!" Hunters mother Tracy called to us. Receiving no answer she came in and shook Hunter awake. Reluctantly he sat up wiping the sleep from his eyes.
"Morning." I greeted them sleepily and got nods back from them A few minutes later Ray was awakened and all got underway for school preparation. By 7:00 we had eaten and finished all else that needed to be done and were in the Suburban laughing at our own stupid jokes as though it were any other day. But it wasn't like any other day. Sometimes I still wish it is all a bad dream.
The parking lot was full which was unusual for a Monday morning, but we paid no attention and went on about our business. Hunter’s mom was leaving in the Suburban, and we were headed into the main high school building. Many of the freshmen got Friday off due to good test scores, which was something different for our little town up in North Eastern, Ok. The buildings lights were on but no one was inside. We put our things in our lockers and went to the middle building. No one.
"Where is everyone?" Hunter asked.
"Maybe they are in the commons." I replied shrugging despite the cold chill I felt creeping on my spine. So we walked out of the middle building and turned to the commons. We weren't prepared for what we saw. There were definitely people in there but not anymore. The walls and tables were spattered with blood, the display cases that held old jerseys were busted so that glass covered a lot of the floor along with pools of blood and torn flesh and body parts. Hunter was doubled over and ran outside; Ray's face was a complete look of horror twisted into one of those overly animated cartoon looks. I was frozen in place my face a complete blank despite all the horrible possibilities passing through my mind. I heard an unearthly scream from just outside the door followed by a chorus of low moans. It was then that I realized my deepest fears and also the sick joy of an ‘I told you so’ moment.
I bolted out the door to find Hunter with vomit all over the front of his shirt staring at the football field with absolute horror. Ray was still standing inside. I followed Hunter's gaze and that which I feared was no longer a Hollywood special-effects and makeup monster, but reality and shambling towards me. Almost all of the high school was there all bloody and missing some part of themselves in the stomach of their neighbor.
"Hunter we have to get out of here." I said in a near panic. "C'mon dude!" I began to pull with all of my might trying to drag him away from the advancing zombies. I opened the door to the commons and called to Ray who was still staring at the unbelievable carnage. He didn't respond. I continued to pull Hunter away with more urgency. The zombies had fully noticed us and were moving faster. Finally he came to his senses and was moving on his own, but I still needed to urge him on and he noticed Ray was not with us. He looked back Ray had responded to my call too late. As he exited he was swarmed thankfully there were enough to hide the fact he was inevitably being torn to pieces. Their moaning couldn't cover the screams though and they still follow me to this day. I had to pull Hunter harder than ever. We had to get away. The elementary wasn't an option. The thought of nearly three-hundred little zombies including possibly my two little brothers was not appealing. I ran towards the high school parking lot where we were dropped off. Hunter was sobbing as he was running, finally on his own. I think maybe he was beginning to understand, but hell I wasn't quite sure if I understood yet. Thoughts began to race in my head. I knew this had to be the Super-Flu thing or whatever, but this was literally Armageddon.
How did this happen? Friday! Yes Friday. Probably just before the football game. That’s why all these cars are here. I guess Hunter lives far enough away that we wouldn’t have heard anything but how? Stop thinking idiot you’re slowing down. Damn the whole world is crumbling around me and everyone else on It.
We had made it across the train tracks by our school and were across the highway beside the town convenient store that everyone called Okie Dokie. I had another friend who lived nearby maybe he had made it and if not I knew he had a shotgun. I couldn't see the zombies anymore. We had left them behind in our fear and adrenaline induced sprint. We made it to his trailer park. It was as empty as I had ever seen it and it was extremely unnerving. His front door was standing open. My hopes sagged. His mother and sister were dead in the hall, the eternal kind. Their heads were virtually gone. I heard the hammer of a gun pull back and click. Slowly I turned around and so did Hunter. Todd was standing in his bedroom door with a gun leveled at our heads. He had been ready for this the last two years and I'd known it would happen eventually but was expecting some kind of warning.
"Dillon?" he asked skeptically.
"Yeah man it’s me, and Hunter" I gestured to Hunter. Todd noticed Hunters shirt was covered in vomit.
"Come in and get cleaned up." He said lowering the gun at last. "I thought everyone else was dead." He grabbed my hand and shook it. "Where were you?"
"I was at Hunter's. We just ran here from the school. They got Ray."He frowned and shook his head. "How did this happen?"
"I don't know, but it did." A sick smile appeared on his face. "We were right. No one believed us, but we're right." His smile faded and his eyes began to water. "I thought it would be easier." He nodded to the door through which lay virtually his whole family. He shook the tears from his eyes. "Well, it looks like we can kill whoever we want." His normal humor returned.
I couldn’t help but laugh. It was weak and mirthless but a laugh nonetheless. “We need to stop by my house. My stepdad has a few guns.” A few was a bit of an understatement as there were 3 shotguns, 3 rifles, 2 of them black powder guns, and 2 pistols, one a .22 and the other a 9mm. “Then we can take the back roads to my grandpa’s house he’s got ammo and a gun case that’s almost full.”
“Okay.” Todd said handling the shotgun nervously. Hunter emerged from the bathroom his face still blank but cleaner than before. He borrowed one of Todd’s shirts. “You alright Hunter?”
“No” was all he said as he sat down.
I went over to him and kneeled. “We have to keep going. We are going to go to my house and my grandpa’s for weapons. Are there any at your house?”
He was quiet for a moment. “Yeah my dad has a rifle and a couple bows.”
“Okay we’ll get those afterwards. On the way back we may have to go by the school.”
“No.” Was all Hunter said.
“I’m sorry but it is a possibility.” I told him looking directly into his emotionless eyes. “Todd can you drive?” I asked him because he was a year older than hunter or I.
“Well that’s better than me or Hunter. Go get your mom’s keys and I’ll keep watch.” He shrugged and handed me the single shot break-over 12 gauge, and 13 extra shells.
He was back soon. I coaxed Hunter up and we got into Todd’s mothers piece of shit cougar. Thankfully it started on the first try and we were on our way. I lived a little over a quarter of a mile from Todd. The trip was quiet, and the scenery gruesome. Doors were torn down windows broken and blood was everywhere. There were a few zombies we saw on our way, but they were preoccupied with the flesh of a loved one or neighbor. It was now about 9:30 a.m., and my house was no exception to the destruction around it. I hoped no one had raided it.