There had to be a cache somewhere around here. Shuffling through trees and leaves and nothing. I turned around and found myself alone. The shuffling continued. But it got louder as if someone was coming our way. No one was in sight. I called out for my friend but got no response. Only some muffled groans from off in the distance. It wasn't my friend, it was someone else. A zombie. I pulled out my .45 and shot him in the head. After all, that's how you get rid of them. We knew they were around lately but hadn't seen any of them. We just heard about it. It's like knowing a storm is on it's way and hearing about it but not seeing it. Then when it finally gets to you, you wish it didn't come, but you were glad to know it was real and not made up. Because it seemed a little too crazy to be true. I know my friend would be alright. I didn't have any physical proof other than a gut feeling, but my gut is always right. I headed back to the car but it was gone. My friend had left.
As I walked back towards the city, there was a school bus. I got on it and it drove up the freeway and got off on the Mill exit near GSR. There were no cars on the road other than the ones that were now on fire. Apparently a lot happened while we were gone. I'm not sure how I knew, but Jesse, Charlie and Lulu were with my parents. That was the plan. If anything happened, go to their home. Now it was up to me to meet them. The bus crashed into the side of the offramp and I crawled out of the emergency exit. I had my 870 with me this time.
I walked around the more industrial parts of Mill and came across a structure composed of aluminum sheets held together with some random fabrication materials. Inside was buzzing with action. Bloody people were trying to help others out amidst the tools and machinery. It was like a make-shift hospital. Some of the people were barking orders at others. I asked if I could help. They needed someone to assist with placing face masks. They figured if they could tack on sheet metal masks over the mouths or faces of the infected, they could save that person without destroying them and use them for labor.
Of course! Why destroy those mindless zombies when you could rehabilitate them to do something useful! Why hadn't anyone thought of that before? In other parts of the country, when others were just running from them allowing them to destroy their cities, this small group of vigilantes discovered a way to take charge and be industrious. They were the perfect workers. They didn't require food or sleep. They didn't require social happiness. They were like machines. When they fell apart, you could replace one with a new one. It was as if it were a human machine. Each mindless being did exactly as it was instructed to do. If you told one to staple metal to the face of a man who had been bit minutes ago and was in perfect health and not yet infected, the zombie worker would do so. If you told one to stand under a trash compactor which would result in destroying the zombie forever, it would do so. They would only comprehend the orders they were given and never question them. The zombie workers were every employer's dream employee.
I had spent too much time fascinating over the zombie workers. So much that I didn't realize there was a crowd of zombies headed towards me. They were not masked off and had the desire for flesh. They stopped and stared at me. I didn't know what to do. I gave them a command and they stared completely dumbfounded. I shuffled back slowly and they followed. But each time I was certain I was about to become a zombie, nothing happened. A few of them grabbed at my arms but then dropped them. One of the doctors turned around and looked as did a few of the patients.
"What's going on?" I asked.
No one seemed to have a response. The zombies poked at me some more and then turned away.
"You must be no good," one of the doctors said.
"Is that possible?" I asked.
Seriously, how is it one is not good enough for zombies. I'm a smart person. I have brains. I'm healthy. I think I would be more than good lunch for a zombie. But for whatever reason, they wanted nothing to do with me.
One of the doctors came up to me. "Let's do a blood test."
"You may be contaminated."
"I can't be. I haven't been bit."
"We can't be too sure. Maybe you got bit and didn't realize."
"I think I would know. I don't have any cuts or bruises. No signs of any bleeding that would imply I got bit. I'm pretty certain I'm not contaminated."
"Well maybe we can find out what's wrong with you."
I didn't like this. It seemed very weird now. I know, this should have been weird a long time ago, stepping into a weird factory hospital with zombie workers and doctors who weren't armed with any guns or anything but seemed to be operating fine in this so-called work environment.
I looked around and suddenly had the need to get a nail gun. It was important that I have one. I was going to go outside and see if I could test my "no-good" status on the zombies around me. A nail gun seemed like a good weapon but I wasn't sure if it would do the job or not.
Upon finding a nail gun, I walked outside of the building with a new crowd of zombies in trail. Once outside, a bunch swarmed to me, but again, none were interested. After a few pokes and curious looks, they lost interest and wandered back to rummaging in trash cans and walking the streets. I shrugged and went back inside.
"OK," I said to one of the doctors, "You can take some of my blood. I'm pretty sure whatever it is, the zombies aren't interested. Maybe we can make a vaccine with my DNA. Maybe it can be used to ward zombies from attacking people, or maybe you can test it to see if it cures zombiesm."
The doctor took a syringe and poked me in the arm drawing out a small amount of my blood. He then stuck the same syringe in a man near by him that was not infected and after shooting him up with a small amount, shot a small amount into a zombie.
I'm not sure what happened to the man because he disappeared into the building. I think my blood killed the zombie. Whatever happened, the doctors were fascinated and started to take my blood and separate it into various viles, adding chemicals and placing drops at a time on petri slides under lights and microscopes, some how generating new blood cells from my sample blood.
I turned around again and walked back out the door and headed towards the freeway as the sun was setting. I was going to meet up with my family and call it a day.