What are people’s thoughts on the idea of me writing the story mainly from Lucky’s POV? He’s the most popular….and the easiest to write for….so…toying with the idea.
I’ve been stuck in the same spot for however long….been so busy with work and such, half the time I don’t think about it. I do, however, keep coming up with little character stories and what not. Things that are totally useless to the current story. >_>
I really like the idea of making this into a trilogy though. I kinda want The Refuge to be book 2 in it and have the 1st be the story of when it all takes place. The last will be a story line set in the future, probably from Kennedi’s POV. (If she lives through the first two books…>_> ) The only issue with that is I do want the story told of how the zombies came to be. So…a 4th book? Or stuck in with the others somehow…. It makes me want to write the 1st book…and the explanatory one. Just leave this one where it’s stuck at….but then again I’d feel bad about it. Grrrr. I dunno what to do. I am going to try to write more though…. On a more fun note….
I made Logan, Jodi, Brooke, and Lucky by cannibalizing other minifigures!
The group slowly crept through the once cozy part of town. The buildings were shambles now, and nothing stood in full. There were cars still halfway out of the driveways, bicycles still on the lawns. It was a sad sight. There weren’t trees anymore. The town’s park was gone. What once had been a beautiful area was now just burnt dust. No flowers grew, no trees provided shade, the play sets were unsteady and the gazebos were gone. Lucky’s head swiveled as he took in the sights.
“This place puts me on edge. I don’t know why though.” Mack muttered quietly. Lucky turned to look at her. Her short black hair was hidden by a hood, and one of her boots was coming untied. She had given him back his vest before they left,it was getting colder out. He studied her as her eyes scanned the landscape. She was fidgeting with her long knife/sword, which she grasped in both hands. He made a mental note to get her a handgun or something. That melee weapon wouldn’t do any good in a ranged fight. He felt guilty for how much he really didn’t know about Mack, or any of the others for that matter. He turned his attention back to the front of the group when he felt the quad slow.
“Shit.” Wes muttered as he turned off the four wheeler, pocketed the key, and climbed off. Lucky slid slowly off the back and followed him. Everyone converged at a blockade that stretched the length of the street. Lucky put a hand on one of the cars that made up the road block and scanned the street. Trent shouldered his way past Lucky and his brother, instead of going around everyone, and stopped in front of a red pickup truck.
“This is the same kind of roadblock that we encountered on the the raid back in May..ish.” Trent said as he turned his back on Lucky and Wes, and faced the others. Lucky noted that only Derek and Drake acknowledged Trent’s comment. The rest were studying the street and surrounding ruins. Wes muttered something too quiet to hear and Lucky gave him a questioning look. Wes’s hazel eyes briefly met Lucky’s and then he shrugged.
“I have a weird feeling about this.” Wes quietly told Lucky. “First the chained doors and pillaged store, now a blockade similar to one a few months back. I dunno about this, man.” Lucky nodded silently and looked at the other people in the group, almost feeling silly for being so paranoid. They all seemed a little edgier than usual, but he figured it was just this part of town. He was a little put off by it too. He turned his gaze forwards and looked at the pile-up of cars. They had scrape marks and were crunched like a large back hoe had pushed them into place. He closed his eyes and brought his fist up to his mouth as he yawned.
“Well we can’t go through this with the quads.” Wes directed after a moment. “Let’s spread out, in groups, and find another route.” The others nodded in agreement and they went in different directions. Derek walked over to Lucky and stopped next to him after the rest of the men left, leaving the two of them and the girls.
“You feeling okay?” Derek asked as he gently pressed against Lucky’s bandaged head. Lucky jerked his head away and glared at the med student.
“As long as you don’t touch my head, then yes.” Lucky snapped. He immediately felt bad about snapping at Derek. He knew he was only trying to help. He closed his eyes and took a breath. “Sorry. Just tired. Should we go look for a way around?” He offered. Derek didn’t seem upset to Lucky, but he wasn’t sure. I barely know the guy. For all I know, he could be royally pissed at me. Lucky thought to himself as he turned to follow Kai and Derek, with Mack trailing behind.
Lucky looked up at the street sign, confused. He was sure they’d passed Tee street already. He blinked hard and then rubbed his eyes as he followed Derek’s sneakers. His head hurt, but it was more around his eyes now than the gash on his temple. They’d been walking for about twenty minutes, Lucky figured, and he felt totally lost. He usually had a reliable sense of direction, but he was all turned around. He checked over his .22 for the 4th time since they left the quads and then put the safety on. He looked up from watching Derek’s feet when they stopped moving.
“Look.” Kai said quietly as she pointed ahead of them. Lucky had to step around Derek to get a good view of the pile of bodies in the alley. They were zombies, but most were rotting now. Lucky noticed that the majority of the bodies were laying feet first towards the house on the left, a big blue duplex looking one. Almost all of them had a single shot in their foreheads, some had no head.
“Someone must live in one of those houses.” Mack stated. Kai gave her a look, to see if she was joking or not. Lucky felt a smirk tug at the corners of his mouth.
“The blue one. Want to go knock and see if they’ll let us in?” Lucky said as he started forward. Suddenly they heard a shot and all of them dropped to the ground.
“SHIT.” Mack swore. Derek had his rifle in his hands, but it was under him and unusable. Kai’s eyes were searching everywhere as Lucky studied the house and thought he saw some movement on the very top floor behind a darkened window. Mack made another noise so he looked behind him and saw her grasping her forearm. Then he noticed blood start trailing down between her fingers and he crawled over to her. He peeled her hand away to inspect the wound and her nostrils flared. She was a little red as she said, “My sword got in the way.” He let out a long whistle as he gently probed the 3 inch cut in her arm. It wasn’t too deep, but it looked like it hurt. He whispered to Derek, who attempted to army crawl over to them but ended up just crawling on his hand and knees when his rifle and bag got in the way. Lucky waited for him to get his stuff out before going to Kai and telling her what he thought he saw.
“I saw it too. I don’t think that was supposed to happen.” She said as they heard a muffled voice yell something. They all went silent as a voice called out from the blue house.
“Who are you?” the deep voice questioned. Lucky looked at Kai then turned back to the house.
“We come in peace.” He paused and glanced quickly at Kai. “Take us to your leader!” He yelled. Kai hit him and he smiled as she frowned and shook her head.
“Lucky, they shot at us. This isn’t funny.” She said. He rolled his eyes and then raised his voice again,
“We are just trying to find a way around the roadblock on…” He paused and whispered to Kai, “What street is it on?” She gave him a look and then replied, “Kennedy road.”
“We’re just trying to find away around Kennedy road.” They waited tensely for a moment before the voice replied.
“Why can’t you climb over the cars?”
“We have a vehicle we need to get past.” Lucky yelled back, starting to get a little annoyed.
“What are you hauling?” The voice called back, questioningly. Lucky sighed and rubbed his eyes.
“Chain link panels to improve our fence. We’re holed up in the old hardware store at the opposite end of town.” He stopped rubbing his eyes and paused when the person remained quiet. He turned around when Derek spoke.
“I’m going to need to stitch this cut, too. Man you guys suck.” He said and chuckled a little before he saw Lucky’s expression. Lucky was ready to drop and was tired, so he turned back around and was ready to shout out obscenities when he was interrupted.
“Just leave your vehicles and panels and we’ll show you around.” The voice called tentatively. Kai scoffed, and it echoed around the group.
“Screw you!” Mack yelled. Kai shot her a look, which went ignored, and Lucky smirked. He looked at the girls and Derek then nodded the way they’d come.
“Lets go. This is ridiculous.” He said, and the others followed him.
“Behind you!” Lucky heard, so he spun and slashed with his 10 inch knife. The zombie didn’t even notice that it’s throat was slit open, it just kept shuffling towards him. He took a quick step so he positioned himself behind it, and grabbing it’s matted hair, he yanked it’s head back. Then he drew his knife across it’s neck, severing the head. They hadn’t made it more than a block before they ran into a small group of zombies. And by small, they mean 30 or so. He got separated from the others, so he paused to look around. He let the head fall to the pavement, watching as it’s mouth moved a few times before he looked away. He heard one of the girls let out a frustrated shriek, so he headed in the direction it came from.
He was really annoyed with the layout of Auburn City. The buildings were spaced weirdly and never with any consistency. As he squeezed between what used to be two apartment buildings, he thought to himself, It’s not that the zombies are overwhelming, it’s just this spot sucks to fight in. As if to confirm what he thought, he rounded a corner to find Kai, Wes, and Derek facing off over half of the horde that targeted them. Their backs were to what was probably a grocery store, and Lucky noted that Derek was slightly behind the other two. He was grasping his rifle in unsteady hands and Lucky guessed he was out of ammo. Wes had a thick tree branch that he swung as a staff, his machete tied to the end. Kai was having the most difficulty though. Lucky watched as she struggled for room to move her arms freely. He raised his .22 to his shoulder and took careful aim. He pulled the trigger and the rifle clicked. He checked the ammo clip and found it empty, so he shouldered the rifle again.
He looked up and saw Kai shove her machete into Derek’s shaky hands and say, “Neck will be easiest. Don’t try anything else.” Lucky saw a light haired zombie shuffle towards Kai’s back and he yelled her name in warning. She had noticed the movement at the same time and was already spinning. Then she focused on fighting instead of instructing. Wes’s staff was a whirl as Lucky removed his knife from it’s sheath.
Raising his knife, Lucky prepared to attack an oblivious zombie in front of him. Before his blade could pierce the flesh of his intended target, it’s head exploded. Covered in gore, and momentarily shocked, Lucky paused. Then he watched as, one by one, the zombies lost their heads to an unseen sniper, the shots echoing in the air. He stood rooted for a minute before he realized the shots had stopped and Kai was calling him.
“Lucky?” She said. He looked up and noticed everyone else was ready to keep going. He walked towards her as they went to search for Mack. Kai didn’t pause to make sure they were following, she just turned on her heel and walked at a brisk pace the way they’d come.
It was still bright out, but Auburn City used to have tall apartment buildings in the area they were now in. Few still stood. The ruins of two blocked enough light that Kai didn’t notice the figure huddled in the shadows as her brisk pace carried her past. It wasn’t until Derek, who was 3rd in line, passed before it’s presence was known. It stumbled into him, catching him off guard as it brought him to the ground. When he fell, his head hit the edge of an old stone bench that was in a small garden area and Lucky heard a sickening crack. Kai and Wes turned only when Derek yelped. Lucky was already there, pulling the small body off of Derek. Kai’s machete was sticking from it’s neck and Lucky yanked it free as he let the body drop.
“Derek?” He asked as he knelt beside the med student, slipping his rifle off his shoulder and setting the machete down. Derek moaned in response but managed a very lopsided grin.
“I got one.” He said in a quiet voice. Lucky couldn’t help but smirk as he moved out of the way of Kai. She asked him simple questions, trying to judge the seriousness of the injury. After a few questions, Derek cracked one eye and peered at her. “I know what you’re doing, and I’m fine. Just hurts like hell.” He told her. He gave her another lopsided grin.
“Can you sit?” She asked and Lucky caught a hint of relief in her voice. He realized that no matter how much crap people give him, they all like the med student. Just one more thing I’ve failed to see. He thought to himself. In answer to Kai, Derek struggled to a sitting position. He lightly touched the back of his head, and his fingertips came back red. His eyes met Lucky’s, who smirked.
“Not you know how I felt.” Lucky said. Kai rolled her eyes and asked Wes to fetch her water bottle. She made Derek drink half of it’s contents then strapped it back onto her backpack. As she worked to put a makeshift bandage around his head, Lucky re-shouldered his rifle. “I’m going to go find Mack and the others.” He announced as he walked around them. Everyone jumped a little when another shot rang out. They looked at each other for a moment before Lucky took a deep breath and started walking.
“Be careful.” Wes said as Lucky passed him. He nodded in reply and disappeared from their view. He only walked a block and a half before he found Mack. She was backed against a wall, alone, trying to fend off a handful of the undead. He started to attack one, but the sniper beat him to it. He was already mostly covered, but now Mack was too. After the corpses dropped Lucky looked up and laughed. Mack glared at him and tried to wipe the gore away.
“Shut up. You’re no better.” She said hotly. She was panting slightly and sweating even though it was cold. She wiped her cheek with the back of her sleeve and then knelt to wipe her long blade on zombie. Lucky started to clean his own on his jeans, but was stopped by Mack. “What if you get cut and the blood mixes with yours? She asked as she stood. He looked at her for a moment then knelt and wiped his knife on the same corpse.
“I hadn’t thought of that.” he told her as he stood up. She gave him a one arm shrug, then looked around them.
“Where is everyone else?” She questioned.
“Kai, Wes, and Derek are about a block back. At least they were when I left them to find you.” He told her. He re-holstered his knife and added, “Need to find Trent, Trevor, and Drake too.” She wasn’t looking when he looked back up, so he called her name as he started walking towards the meeting point Kai and him had agreed upon.
When Lucky and Mack joined back up with the others, it was almost by accident. Both groups were emerging from different alleys on the same street. They waved to each other but then stopped and stared. The street separating them was littered with corpses. There were places, mostly in front of alleys, that the bodies were piled two to three deep.
“What happened here?” Mack questioned quietly. Lucky slowly shook his head.
“No idea. Where the hell did all these come from?” He said as he formed a mental map. “There are no major cities anywhere near here.” He saw her shake her head out of his peripheral. Freakin creepy. He thought to himself as they started towards Kai and Wes, stepping off the curb and around the bodies as much as possible. Before they made it a few feet, a zombie shuffled into sight from an alley. Everyone jumped when another shot rang out and the head exploded. For the first time, Lucky looked around and noticed a similarity with all the corpses. He nudged Mack and nodded.
“All of them have been shot in the head.” He told her. She stopped and looked around, noticing it now. “Not the same rifle though. See how some have no head, but others have a single bullet wound?” He finished. She looked around a little more before nodding.
“So, two rifles? Two shooters or just one with two guns?” She asked him. He shrugged as he looked at Kai and Wes. They’d ducked into back in their own alley and were peering out. He noticed Wes has realized what they’d just discovered too.
“C’mon, I want to get out of this street.” Lucky said as he grabbed Mack’s uninjured arm and pulled her with him towards Kai and Wes. He looked up to see Kai wave him back, so they reversed course and went back. Once they got to their alley, they were met with unexpected company. Mack pushed past him and her long knife flashed as she decapitated one of the two zombies. The other had already made it through the opening of the alley and was moving towards Lucky when a shot echoed. A single hole appeared in the forehead of the zombie, and it dropped to the ground. Lucky had felt the shot whiz by his own head. He quickly ducked back into the alley behind Mack and they stopped for a second.
“Holy shit.” He said as he touched the side of his head he felt the bullet go by. Mack wasn’t paying attention, because she was too occupied trying to figure the best way to the adjacent alley. Wes and Kai had crossed the street already and were waiting for them. There was a wall of bodies between them, and they’d have to go out to the middle of the street again. Lucky caught his breath before nodding. Then they both made their way cautiously out of the alley.
They reached Wes and Kai unharmed, but when they got there Lucky realized for the first time Derek was not with them. He looked around and then scanned the street behind them before asking, “Where is Derek?” Wes motioned the way they’d come.
“He was resting for a little bit. Said he’d be right behind us.” A shot echoed again and one more body dropped, this one on the far edge of the street. Lucky could tell it was definitely a higher powered rifle than the one that almost hit him. Kai was standing now and looking at the newest corpse. Her green eyes scanned the sea of dead then met each person’s around her. She paused as she took in Lucky and Mack’s grime covered faces and clothing. She raised an eyebrow and Mack shook her head.
“Where the hell did all these walkers come from?” Kai asked. Mack and Wes shook their heads. Just then, they head Derek calling Kai’s name. Lucky, Mack, and Kai turned as Wes hollered for him to hurry. Kai was digging in her backpack again and Lucky thought to himself, I wonder is she has food….
Derek was just emerging from the alleyway and he halted in surprise at the sight before him. Lucky noticed his head bandage was missing and he didn’t have his backpack. Derek was too busy scanning the street to see Lucky’s wave, so he hollered instead.
“Over here!” Derek looked up and nodded as he stepped off the curb. Lucky felt a tickling sensation on his cheek, and upon reaching up to scratch he found a trail of blood. He wiped his hand on his jeans and asked for Derek’s bag, hoping Wes had it. He did, so Lucky was rifling through it when another shot rang out. Another one? He thought. Suddenly, Kai yelled.
“Derek!?” She screamed. Lucky spun, dread filling his chest. The geeky doctor was nowhere to be seen, but Kai and Wes were sprinting towards the street. Mack was as frozen as Lucky as they watched Kai fall to her knees next to a body, calling Derek’s name. Wes knelt and put his fingers to the neck of the body Kai was shaking, then bowed his head and said something. Kai shook her head and lifted the body so it’s shoulders and head were on her lap. Derek’s blonde head rolled to one side. Upon seeing it, Lucky unfroze and rushed past Mack to Kai’s side. He stopped just behind her shoulder and stared.
A large pool of blood was already forming, soaking through Kai’s dark cargos and on the street where he was before she moved him. Derek’s eyes were staring, unseeing, at Lucky. His mouth was slightly ajar. There was a single bullet hole in his forehead, and the back of his head was missing, strewn about across the concrete. Kai didn’t seem to notice as she tried to get a response from the med student. Wes met Lucky’s eyes and the horror and suddenness of the situation reflected in them both. Wes called Kai’s name again, softly. She ignored him. It wasn’t until Lucky put a hand on her shoulder and leaned over her to close Derek’s eyes that she looked up.
“He’s gone, Kai.” Lucky whispered. Her dry eyes became watery as she tried to blink away the tears. She looked between Lucky and Wes, pleading with her eyes for them to help.
“I don’t want to lose anyone else.” She whispered so softly that they almost didn’t hear. Mack appeared behind Lucky, and her ragged intake of breath let him know she saw. Before he could turn around, she had stumbled away a few paces and was vomiting. He heard Kai let loose a sob as he stood between her and Mack, unsure of what to do. He stood fixed in that spot until the rest of the group found them, still huddled around the corpse of their friend.
Slowly but surely I am working on Chapter 9. I do plan on posting it…and for those of you that actually check/read my blog, I apologize. This month has been pretty crazy, and I’ve had a lot going on to occupy my time.
I wanna say Kudos to Kirk for getting the 2nd What Zombies Fear book published. WOOT. (Also…still waiting on the first one.. )
UHM…..OH. Okay. Lucky seems to be everyone’s favorite…and I see why now. SO…I will be working on the others to make them..more. I’ve already had a few ideas of how to better the first few chapters…which I’ll wait to apply until I get the rough draft done. Seriously. I need to work on it more.( Mainly just saying that for my own sake… :/ )
Anywho, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year ya’ll. I vill be back!
Okay… I need some opinions. Those of you that like The Refuge(so far) and want more of it need to help me out.
I’m working on some different ideas for it, and would like your input.
A. Who is your favorite character? Do you want a chunk of the story to be through his/her pov?
B. If I split the book into parts, and switched the pov then, would it be less confusing?
Let me know…it would be muy útil. (very helpful) Might just help me get past this….small case of writer’s block.
I know it’s MY book..and MY story…but sometimes what I think will work…doesn’t. It all makes sense to me because I created the world, I sculpted each character. I gave each one different mannerisms and quirks. I KNOW them. But I’m not the best at making it seem real to others… and I like to know what I can do to make them seem real.
So…take ONE minute of your time and leave me a comment or text, email, pony express, or write what you think in the sky. I don’t care how…
Lucky’s head was pounding as he slowly gained consciousness. He heard someone tell him to get up, then other voices talking but he couldn’t understand them. They all seemed muffled. He figured he was on the ground, because his eyelids were ablaze with light from the warm sun. He groaned and the bright light above him dimmed a little as someone leaned over him.
“Lucky? Can you hear me at all?” He recognized Derek’s voice and grunted in response. He reached his hand up to the left side of his head, where the majority of the splitting pain was emanating
from. A cold hand grabbed his wrist and pulled it back to his side. He heard Derek sigh as he felt hands on either side of his head. “Hold still. I need to wrap this.” The hands vanished and as he waited, Lucky tried opening his eyes. His right one popped open, which caused him to wince at the light and groan in pain. He slowly opened it the second time, and tried working the left one open. He felt someone wipe the left side of his face with a cold, wet cloth. He flinched away from it.
“Your eye is matted shut. Just chill for a second. Can you hear me okay?” Kai said as she cleared the drying blood off his face. He opened his mouth and wet his lips before answering.
“Shit, Kai.”he croaked. “ What the hell happened to me?” He winced when she dabbed too close to his temple. He could see her glance to his other side then at his feet, and he looked in the directions she did. He saw Mack standing next to his shoulder, Trevor a little behind her leaning on a wall, and Trent crouching at his feet, nursing a black eye. He closed his eyes again as Derek asked Mack to help him. She hurried to his side and placed her hand gently on the wad of gauze on Lucky’s temple as Derek started to wrap some around his head. He winced but kept silent as they made him look like a mummy.
“There we go. You will be okay until we get back to the Refuge, then I’ll stitch it up. Feel like you can sit up?” Derek said as he stuffed his supplies into his backpack.
“I can try. Not promising much though.” Lucky replied. He felt Kai’s strong grip on his wrist and his upper arm as she pulled him up. He was hit with the worst wave of dizziness he’d had in the past week and would have fallen back down if not for her. Wincing made the shooting pain worse so he clenched his jaw and waited it out. After the dizziness diminished, he slowly opened his eyes. The left one was blurry, so he reached up to rub it. At the same time, Trent spoke.
“Is he going to be alright, Derek?” The big man asked. Lucky heard scoffs all around and stopped rubbing his eye to look at Kai.
“Someone please fill me in.” He said, very annoyed. He was surprised when Trevor was the one that answered.
“This moron attacked you. He would have shot you if I hadn’t hit him too.” His voice was heated.
“Shit. It was an accident.” Trent fired back. “I TOLD you guys. I thought he was a zombie.” Trevor pushed himself off the wall he was leaning on and took a step towards Trent.
“He was talking, you idiot.” Wes materialized between then, his back to Lucky. He must have made a face at Trevor because the shorter man resumed his leaning on the wall, his arms folded across his chest, but his fists were still balled. Lucky closed his eyes again momentarily. After a moment he peeked at his watch. It was already almost 4:30 pm. The fencing and the walk had taken up most of the morning, and Lucky realized he must have been out cold for a good 20 minutes. He took a deep breath and nudged Kai’s arm. When she looked at him he motioned her to help him get up. He slowly stood, ready for the dizziness that surprisingly didn’t come. He raised his voice so everyone could understand him clearly once he was on his feet.
“Alright guys. We need to get a move on. This was supposed to be a single day project and I have a feeling it’s going to be more than that. We need to be careful,” He leveled his gaze on Trent, “ but not overly so. If you’re unsure, double check. Also, Trent, if you so much as touch me again you’ll regret it.” The last part made everyone smirk but the person it was said to. Trent just huffed and turned his back to the group. As everyone but the girls walked past him to follow Trent, Lucky reached around for his rifle. It wasn’t on his back and he panicked slightly before Kai handed it to him. He noticed a new scratch on it and groaned.
“Sorry.” Kai said as she peered at it. He always kept the .22 in good condition. “ It went flying when he hit you. You’ll live. C’mon.” She followed the others as Lucky took a tentative step, still eying his rifle. He felt Mack’s hands stabilize him as the dizziness finally caught up to him. After a moment he looked at her.
“Today is going to suck.” He told her, which caused her to grin. They turned in unison and started walking when they heard Trent’s rifle repeatedly discharge.
When they caught up to the others, they were all just entering the back of the building. Rotting corpses littered the floor and doorway, which somebody had opened so they had clear shots. Lucky switched the safety off and slowly followed Wes’s big frame as they entered the dim store. The store had been ransacked and there was barely anything on the shelves, which wasn’t a promising sign. The majority of the bodies were waiting at the doors, but a few stragglers still meandered the store. The ones Trent missed, Wes took care of. The group made their way around the store, searching for anything left that was useful. After they swept the whole store, they headed to the fencing supplies in the store’s warehouse. They walked in the dim room and waited a moment for their eyes to adjust.
“Well on the plus side, they have the chain link panels!” Lucky said when his eyes adjusted. Kai gave him a look and walked to the wall, stood on her toes and stretched her arm upwards. She was a good two feet from touching the bottoms of the panels. Lucky and Wes turned to find a ladder or some kind of step stool, while Trent sauntered over to Kai and reached up. He could touch them, but couldn’t get a good hold on them. He tried shaking them but ended up just rattling them. From the back corner of the dim warehouse, Lucky called out. “I found a ladder.” Wes jogged over and took it from him, then walked back to Trent. The big man climbed up the ladder and lifted the first panel down, passing it to his brother and Trevor. As they started to get the panels off the wall, Lucky headed back to the main store.
He was behind the checkout counter when he heard soft footsteps behind him. He spun, his rifle in front of him, to find Derek. The med student’s face was white and he had his hands in the air. Lucky lowered his rifle and then frowned when he noticed he’d forgotten to take the safety off. He turned back around and continued to dig through the shelves.
“Sorry, man. Shouldn’t sneak up on people.” Lucky said over his shoulder. He heard Derek clear his throat then walk over and lean on the counter.
“What are you looking for?” Derek asked as he watched Lucky. Without turning, Lucky answered.
“Keys. I figure we can use a quad to haul the panels back. Maybe a couple of them if there’s gas and I can get the keys.”
“Smart idea. I’ll go check that big box on the wall that says keys.” Derek said with a smile.
“What?” Lucky turned around to see Derek pointing at a locked box on the wall. He frowned and walked over. “Well shit.” He rubbed his head and sighed. He looked at Derek, who was still smiling, then drove the butt of his rifle against the lock. He had to do it a couple times before the old lock broke. When he opened it they found 20 sets of keys, all with labels. They looked at each other, and Lucky said, “Thank you Mister Labeler!” Lucky grabbed all the ones marked “ATV” and the one labeled “Locks” then the two headed outside.
There were only 3 four-wheelers outside, and the first one didn’t work. Lucky was removing the chains from the second when they heard a ruckus from inside. They both paused and looked at each other, then went went back to their previous tasks. Lucky let the heavy chains fall from the second ATV and then he fished in his pocket for the keys. He inserted the key into the ignition and crossed his fingers as he turned it. Nothing. He looked disappointingly at it and noticed the engine switch was flipped to “off.” Feeling like a moron he switched that on and turned the key again. The red Sportsman 500 roared to life and Lucky smiled. He killed the engine and then walked to the first four wheeler. This one was a smaller one, only a 300, but after switching the engine switch to on, the blue ATV came to life. Derek was unchaining the last one as Lucky walked over, found the power switch, and inserted the last set of keys into the camouflaged 450. The engine sputtered, caught, and ran for a little bit before dying. Lucky frowned at it and checked it over. He opened the gas cap and shook the ATV, but nothing sloshed. He looked at Derek, who was sitting on the 500, and shrugged.
“No gas. So much for this one.” Lucky said, patting the seat like an old pet. Derek scratched his temple and looked around him.
“Why don’t we just siphon gas from a tractor?” He asked. Lucky looked up and gazed at the tractors, then shook his head.
“They’re all diesel. It’s okay though. The other two will work just fine. Grab the keys and lets go inside.” Derek did as he was instructed and they walked inside to discuss ideas on attaching the panels. When they reached the warehouse again, they saw Trent on the ladder lifting panels down to Wes and Trevor. There was a stack of six panels on the ground, and at least ten more on the wall. Derek tapped Lucky’s arm and gestured with his head to the left. Lucky nodded once and then moved forward as Derek went the other way. Kai was crouched down, her back to him, doing something to the panels. He walked up behind her and looked down.
“Nice!” He said as he repositioned himself so he could see better. She found rope and was using it to secure the panels together, making it easier to haul. She looked up at him then tightened the knot. There were knots on all edges of the panels, and a few in between. Mack was doing the same with the next set of panels that the boys stacked, and as she turned to look at him he noticed blood on the side of her head. “What the hell happened to you!?” Lucky said as he looked to Kai for an explanation. She frowned and motioned to Trent.
“I got in the way of the panels. I’m alright.” Mack said before Lucky could rip into Trent. He clenched his jaw and turned when Derek walked up holding some thick wire, frowning.
“Man! You guys beat me to it.” He whined, then smiled. Lucky looked from him to Kai then dangled the keys in front of her, still slightly upset about Mack.
“We can use the wire to secure them to the quads!” He said as the epiphany hit him. He clapped Derek on the shoulder and then crouched down to start moving the panels. Dizziness rolled over him and he lost his balance again, falling onto his back.
“Lucky!” Kai said, worry in her voice. She was kneeling next to him before he could open his eyes. He waved her and Derek off as he took a couple deep breaths.
“I’m alright. Just dizzy.” He said after a moment. He heard someone sigh.
“You aren’t going to be much help today, Lucky. I think you should just chillax and we’ll handle the moving.” Derek said as he grabbed the keys that were still in Lucky’s hand and put them with the others in his own pocket. “I knew it was a good idea to come.” He mumbled, loud enough for them to hear as he turned to bring the ATVs closer to the building. Lucky looked at Kai, who looked back at him before smirking.
“C’mon, let’s get you out of the way.” She said as she helped him to sit against the wall. She handed him her water and had him hold her bag. As she walked away, he couldn’t help but feel useless. He sat against the wall and watched the flurry of activity as everyone did something productive except him. He tenderly explored the thick bandaging around his head as he watched, and let his mind wander. He groaned when he thought about the scolding he’d get from his sister, even though it wasn’t his fault. He leaned his head against the cool cement wall and looked around, taking in the musty scent and the, mostly bare, dusty shelves without really seeing them. He wondered how his parents were and how the ranch looked. Was it overgrown like the back of the Refuge? Did his Dad keep it mowed? He missed his family. He looked at the people that surrounded him right there and his brow furrowed. They were friends. He wasn’t close enough to any of them yet, and he missed that feeling. The feeling of having a person by your side that knew you. Knew when to push you and when to back off. He knew the only non-related person who was family to him was gone. It hurt him to think about but it was true.
Lucky took a deep breath and decided to work harder to get to know the people of the Refuge. He’d followed Brooke on her crazy journey because he couldn’t live with himself if he hadn’t and something had happened to her. He almost lost her on the way here, too. At first he regretted it, but being here was so different than he first thought. Man, what have I gotten myself into? He thought to himself. He closed his eyes, suddenly tired.
“Hey. Lucky. C’mon, let’s go.” Kai said as she kicked the bottom of his boot. Hr groaned and looked up. He looked at his watch and yawned.
“Did I pass out?” He asked as he reached up and took her outstretched hand. She nodded.
“Yup. Out like a light. You ready to go?” She said as she took her backpack from him. He nodded and they walked outside to the waiting group.
When they reached the front of the building, Trent was trying to argue with Trevor about who got to drive. Trevor was doing his best to ignore the big man, but by the expression on his face it wasn’t working too well.
“I should drive one. I have experience driving these.” Trent complained, his beefy arms folded across his chest. Trevor stayed on the smaller one, and Wes on the larger ATV. Trevor rolled his eyes and asked Mack a question, not wanting to get involved she just mumbled a quick answer and walked towards Kai. Before Trent could keep going, Lucky interjected.
“You know what, Trent? I think you lost your privilege of driving one when you bashed me in the head. Then you lost your arguing right when you did the same to Mack.” Lucky’s green eyes dared Trent to say something as they tried to stare each other down. Wes cleared his throat and Trent broke eye contact with Lucky.
“He’s right, bro. Sides, Lucky is going to ride on the 500 and your fat ass won’t allow room for the two of you.” Wes joked. That earned him a glare but Trent didn’t say another word. As soon as Trent turned and started walking, as they knew he would, Lucky turned to Wes.
“Dude. Seriously? I can walk just fine.” Lucky said, annoyed. Wes looked from him to Derek and shrugged.
“Doc’s orders. We don’t want you to slow us any, no offense.” He said as he started the four wheeler. Lucky frowned but didn’t feel like walking anyway, so he begrudgingly climbed on the back. He sat with his back to Wes’s and his legs over the rack. Trevor was in front of them, the tops of the panels attached to the back of his quad. The bottoms of them were strapped to the front of the 500 that Wes and Lucky were on. Mack walked behind them, and Lucky made a face at her. She smirked and pretended that she wasn’t blushing. Kai walked to their left and Derek on the right. Wes muttered “big baby” and it caused Lucky to turn around. Trent was in front of them, his shoulders hunched and once hand stuffed in his pocket. Lucky smirked and turned back around. He knew they weren’t going home the same way they came, because there were too many obstacles for the quads to maneuver. He wasn’t a hundred percent sure on the town layout, so he leaned back a little and got Wes’s attention.
“What way are we going back?” He asked. Wes’s white hoodie and beanie were too bright for Lucky, so he closed his eyes against the glare and listened.
“We’re going around town instead of through. It will take a little longer, and we’ll go past some of the burned out, but it should be clearer.” He replied. Lucky hadn’t been through that part of town yet, and he was anxious upon hearing it. The residents of Auburn City referred to the outskirts of the town as the “burned out” area because most of it was burned down in the initial outbreak. Nobody was sure how it started, but some thought that it was a group of people trying to kill the infected. He heard Jodi talking about it once and it didn’t sound fun. Lucky straightened his back and popped his neck, then looked back at the store as the quads slowly crawled away from it. He stared at the corpses that still littered the front entrance and wondered who had chained them inside the store, and why.
Sorry it’s taking so long for 8.2. Kinda hit a little wall.
I am reading a trilogy now, in hopes of inspiration. It’s helping a little…. 8.2 is a lot longer than .1 is. They’ll all be one eventually…. I’m at over 3000 words for .2.
As I look at my stats, I see that on the 11th I hit my all time highest number of views. Looks like someone went through and read every chapter. Awesome. Leave feedback, people! (please) I know that it sounds stupid but knowing that people LIKE what I write helps motivate me. Negative comments are okay….just try to be constructive….not mean. ….
Used up my allotted number of dots today so(insert four dots) I’ll post the rest soon(dot) I promise!!