(Here is Part 2 of Wednesday’s post.) 🙂
Dropping my stash, I rushed back onto the main floor just in time to see her pointing her pistol at five of the S.O.B.s. Within moments, I had downed the three closest to her and got the attention of the other two. Chloe ran towards me. Suddenly she tripped over some debris, sending her pistol flying. One of the creatures headed towards the gun as the other continued towards me. She stood up and ran, stopping when she realized that she dropped her weapon.
“Forget it Chloe! Come on!” I shouted, keeping my eye on my advancing target. She ignored me and went back, only to come face to face with her attacker. They stood facing each other with the pistol between them. I had one bullet left. Question is, which of these creatures do I shoot?
Chloe’s lunge towards the pistol gave me my answer. I raised the rifle and emptied the last bullet into her attacker just as it grabbed her. She pulled herself free, pistol in hand, and ran towards me. Stopping a few feet away, she raised the gun and put a bullet in the last one’s head, saving me the trouble of getting blood and guts all over my rifle.
The two of us stood there for a moment, collecting our breath and our thoughts. I looked at her with a smile. It wasn’t returned.
As I walked towards her, all I could hear was the sound of my own voice whispering “no” over and over again. She looked at me in sympathy. My face was wet as I reached out to her. “Don’t touch me Trace,” she said, stepping back. “I don’t want to risk it.” I looked at her hand. The creature had scratched her, its own blood and filth was now working its way through her system. Death would be slow, painfully slow.
She lifted the pistol to her head. “No!” I shouted, knocking it from her hand. I know the promise that I made, but now that the moment was here, I couldn’t do it. I just can’t. She looked into my brown eyes and smiled. “It’s okay Trace,” she said. That’s when I realized that she had pulled out a small screwdriver from her pocket, one that she had found earlier. In one swift motion, she stabbed it into her temple, her body dropping to the floor, her blood covering her pretty face and staining her hair.
And I just stood there and let her do it. Me, the brave one, the one that had kept us fed and safe. Me, the one that when it came down to it, was just chicken shit. I couldn’t even hold her to say goodbye. The chance of contamination was too much of a risk. So, I just stood there. I don’t know how much time went by, though judging by the darkening of the store, it was probably getting close to dusk. This was when we would normally find a safe place to hold up for the night, but tonight I would be doing that alone. I looked at the pistol. It was covered in blood, hers and its. I left it there. Stepping outside, I took a quick look around. Suddenly, I could hear them. I really wasn’t surprised. We had been followed for days, managing to stay just ahead of them. I knew that they heard the noise and came to check it out. I had a choice to make. Stand here and let them take me. Take my own life before they arrive. Run and hide. All three choices sucked. I raised my rifle. It was empty but they didn’t need to know that.
Two armoured trucks came up the street and stopped about 100 feet away. Two soldiers stepped out. I knew who they were and why they were here.
“It’s her sir.” I heard on one soldier’s walkie talkie. He raised a hand as he moved forward. “Put the rifle down. You’re unnumbered and outgunned.” I knew that, but I didn’t care. I just stood there waiting. I heard guns click as four more soldiers stepped out. They needed me alive, that much I knew. I wish I took that pistol now. I don’t know why I didn’t.
That’s a lie. I know exactly why. I want to know what really happened. And I want him to answer for Chloe.
I lowered my weapon and got on my knees. The soldier rushed over and shoved me to the ground, handcuffed me, and dragged me to the truck, where I was tossed inside. The roar of the vehicle vibrated in my ear as I laid on the floor. No one offered to help me up, making me feel more like a package than a person. Eventually I got up myself, shuffling over to the side and propping myself up enough to sit on the long, metal bench. That’s when I actually paid attention to who was on the bench across from me.
He looked over at me, glasses perched on the tip of his nose. He still hasn’t fixed their fit yet. He gave me a faint smile. I couldn’t tell if it was pity or satisfaction. It certainly wasn’t affection. “Hi Dad,” I said. “Hello Tracey.” he replied as he moved next to me and injected me with the syringe.
That’s when everything went black.
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