{Apodcastalypse} The Long Night

A lone shot echoed into the night acting as an alarm to the world to become quiet. Dominic tried to comprehend it all; the beginning with Sherriff Dunn covered in blood, the hurried race to The Stank, a convenience store just miles from the field, the seemingly dead feasting on the recently deceased deputy, and the wholesale slaughter of everything that came for them. But now, his world was truly ripped apart.

The shot still rang loud in his head. The terrible, but necessary, act of releasing his wife from whatever life was remaining within her after she turned. Was it the right thing? Was there hope in curing her?

It was irrelevant now. Her lifeless body, collapsed against the screen door to his house, was motionless.

“Check on D,” Mo barked at Jed, whose hand was still stretched in front of him, gun aimed at the door where he fired the lone round. “Frank! Help me drag her out of the way.”

Jed lowered the weapon, turned his head toward Dominic, and made the decision to leave him be for a moment. “I did it,” he tried to rationalize. “I’ll move her.”

Busting in a spot on the screen door, he reached through and unlocked it, giving them easy access to the house. As he slowly opened it, Linda’s body poured over the threshold and onto the small cement porch. Blood began to pool underneath from the wound in her head, and Jed took care to respect her body in the process of lifting her up.

Franklin did his best to take in the events of the night. “Is this shit real,” he asked openly. His stance was alert, but his state of being was defeated.

All of them were suffering from a mild case of shock. Dom, especially, was near the brink of a psychotic episode; rage building within him as every second ticked away.

Mason followed Jed into the house in an effort to assist with the body. As soon as he was able, he found a blanket on the back of the couch, laid it flat on the floor, and Jed laid Linda’s body atop it. Without any exchange of words, the two folded the blanket to conceal her. It was a crude attempt, and only as effective as one might expect as blood began to soak into it; giving away its secrets.

Mo broke the silence, “Do you know where he keeps his guns?”

Jed nodded, still maintaining his silence. He stood upright from his position next to Linda, turned, and exited the house.

It was a short walk that seemed to happen in slow motion. He looked at his friend, Dominic, sitting alone in his truck; the engine still quietly running. He approached with caution, reached in for the keys, and made the mistake of looking into Dom’s eyes.

They were cold and evil. The light within him has ceased, but he still drew breath. His chest, heaving in and out with raw anger doing the work for him.

“Guys,” came a concerned call from Frank still standing on the porch. “We’re fucked!”

Jed withdrew the keys from the ignition, and swung his head around. They were everywhere. Coming from every direction. Men and women lifelessly drug their feet as they made their way toward the group of friends now desperate for answers. Children were mixed in with them; some wearing pajamas and looking like they just crawled out of bed. Most of the zombies had their faces and chest covered in blood. Some had blood dropping from their hands, and others had matted hair red hair streaked with it.

The zombies unknowingly began to cluster, but remained in separated groups of two to four. A devilish smile creeped onto Dominic’s face.

The former football star and sailor looked at Frank. The corporal’s body language was soft and unwilling. Death was the theme for his life, and he wanted no more of it.

“Help Jed,” Mo snapped, attempting to get his brother-in-law back into the present. He grabbed the machete from Frank as he said it, and rushed to Dom’s side.

It worked. Jed and Frank made their way into the house, and into the bedroom closet where the gun safe was located.

“You don’t look right,” Mason told his rival, handing him the machete.

“Fuck you, fuck these things, and fuck making it through this alive,” Dom growled through is teeth.

Mo couldn’t help but smile. He’d long ago taken on the belief of the Norse religion, and now it took hold of him. “Valhalla awaits, my friend.”

Taking his hatchet in his right hand, and his Bowie knife in the other, he managed to skip his feet to hasten his first step.

The two men charged.

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