Day 577 The Darkest Night
I would have lost track of the days if it wasn’t for Kathy’s watch. It was an inexpensive thing which happened to keep track of the days as well. Along the way we met and lost many friends, some died, some decided to go their way. Our group numbered eight at the moment as we followed some signs to a place called Arklay Island. We were still a few days away, but we were making good progress. It was a clear night, warm, and dry as all the stars could be seen through the clearing of the forest. We set up camp using a rope to make a perimeter with cans tied to it to warn us with noise. All I could hear was the crackle of the fire and crickets as I looked over to Freya. She was already out as I laid my head down to sleep as well.
I don’t know how long I was out, but it was the thunder that woke me. I sat up to what felt like tropical storm winds. I could feel the dirt and tiny debris hit my body and face as I squinted to see. Is this why it was so calm all day because this was coming? The rain started suddenly like someone setting off some fire sprinklers. Large drops came down sideways as it quickly started to rain heavily. Tim was on watch, and he was yelling so that we could hear him as others woke up. “Storm…it came….outta nowhere.” he yelled as we held our blankets over our heads and huddled close. The storm was too fierce. The forest floor was quickly flooding, and all kinds of branches and sticks were falling down on us from the trees. “Can we make it back to the road where those broke down cars were?” Kathy yelled “Yeah, but it’s so hard to see even without the rain….who has the flashlights?” I yelled back. The rain quickly ended what remained of the fire. There was hardly any moonlight and the only time you could see was when lightning flashed which came quite often. “I got one.” yelled Tim as he turned it on. Why his wasn’t on already I did not know. From the time we met him a couple of months back I had the impression that he wasn’t too bright but he was a nice guy. “I got one too.” yelled Michelle as she turned it on and waved it about showing everyone. The group only had three and neither Freya, nor I had the last one so who did?
Freya’s friend Alex yelled back turning on the last flashlight and raising it in her hand like the Statue of Liberty. “I got it, ok let’s go AAAAAAA!” Alex screamed out as she was tackled to the ground from behind. Tim and Michelle pointed their lights to relieve Alex being attacked by a couple of infected. Tim lounge in to try and help her pulling out his gun. I pulled out my gun just as lightning flashed relieving a thousand corpses and they were already on top of us. The rope wasn’t going to stop that horde, and the cans, the ones that didn’t blow away, had their noise drowned out by the loud storm. I reached out to grab my sister right next to me and yelled: “Look out, run!” Tim backed off as much more piled up on top of Alex and turned to run with the rest of us in the direction we hoped was toward the road. We heard Alex’s screams behind us as they tore into her. Tim seemed to know where to run so we followed his light best we could. Out of nowhere, dark figures flanked us as many members of the group got grabbed and dragged down to the ground only to be pounced on by much more. There were so many all around us but in the darkness and rain it was near impossible to tell where they were coming from.
I was all-state track and field which got me a scholarship to college. I would have made nationals if I didn’t break my toe. It showed me how fragile was my track and field career. After missing nationals, I made the right choice to fall back on my good grades and get into medical school. My sister Freya was currently in college with a full scholarship. She played soccer as a forward. Together, my sister and I were some pretty fast girls. It was near darkness, but I could feel Freya running next to me. Behind us, the rest of the group had disappeared into the darkness and chaos. Up ahead leading the way, Tim was the only other member of our group we could see because of the flashlight. We pushed forward until infected appeared in front of us. Tim shoved some out of the way then started shooting. I was right next to Freya as she was grabbed from the side. It was an easy shot as I blew it’s head off with one shot. Freya swung her weapon as Tim, and I shot our guns making a path. I was a bit more reckless with my shots as my gun clicked empty first. Tim’s gun clicked shortly after and all three of us started running. We easily kept up with Tim as we could leave him in the dust if we wanted. I dug in my back pocket to get an extra clip to reload my gun. As I pulled it out of my pocket, I felt my foot get snagged by what seemed like a branch or root. I tripped falling flat on my chest splashing against the flooded muddy ground as I braced the fall with my hands. Unfortunately, my gun flew out of my hand and fell somewhere in the darkness. Freya happened to see me fall and stopped but Tim continued running. “Fuck!” I said through my teeth frantically splashing my hands around the muddy darkness. That was Russel’s gun. Where did it go? It’s the last thing of him I have. “Ai, come on!” yelled Freya “Get up!” We both turned to looked ahead at Tim’s silhouette from his flashlight. Tim looked back a second as he runs into a group of infected. Freya and I see his light get dragged to the ground as he screams in pain. “Ok go!” I yelled at Freya as she runs and I get up and start running after her. I followed her shadowy figure into the darkness as we left Tim behind.
I easily catch up to her in the darkness as she wasn’t running very fast. I push her shoulder from behind for her to pick up the pace “Move it!” I heard the hiss of the infected woman I pushed as it turns around. I briefly saw it’s decayed face as lightning flashed. I must have confused the shape of this thing with my sister in the darkness. I was filled with adrenaline as I threw the infected woman to the ground by my side and kept running. “Freya!” I yelled. Oh, my god, I lost my sister I thought. “Freya!” I yelled again. The wind was so noisy it made it so hard to hear and the darkness and rain made it hard to see. I kept running trying to find her while dodging shadowy figures getting near me. The flashes of lightning gave me a small window to see where to go. Each foot step splashed against the muddy ground as I made my way through the forest. Suddenly, my steps felt solid as the ground was now very hard. I made it to the road, but I was far from safe. I can hear the moans of infected getting closer as I approached a large broken down pickup. The truck was lifted so I quickly got down on the wet road and crawled underneath it to hide. I could hear so many sliding feet around me as the rain fell. Each flash of lightning showed dozens of legs shambling around the area. I folded my arms and rested my head on them as I rode out the stormy night under the truck. The worst night of my life.
It seemed like an eternity under the truck, but I eventually dozed off because when I awoke the sun was out and bright. I slowly crawled out from under the truck carefully looking around. The storm covered the road and cars with a mess of leaves and fallen branches. There was no sign of any infected around. I started walking holding my wet body. I went back and found our camp site along with many of the remains of my friends. But, there was no sign of Freya. I gathered a few useful things as some infected stragglers starting appearing, so it was time to go. I made my way back to the road and continued on my way to Arklay; that’s where we were all headed. If Freya was alive, I hope to find her there.2