Dead is Alive
Blood drips into puddles like rain falling in the Spring. The blood doesn't belong to me though. No, it belongs to the three men who thought they could kill me. Do they not realize you cannot kill the already dead? I try to loot their bodies quickly but all of their blood flooding from their necks is making it tricky. I know they probably all have a wife and kids at home, but they didn't think about that while they tried to slit my neck. Once I have finally looted their bodies I begin to run down the road heading straight into the centre of the city.
This is my life now. Kill or be killed. It is a gruesome way to live, but a way to live nevertheless. Ever since The Plague decimated our world I have been on the run. I've travelled all the way from Vancouver, BC where I used to live, to Regina, Saskatchewan the capital city in the forgotten province. I loved my old house. I miss all the homely smells it came to have. Its the little things in the end, that you miss the most. Not stuff like new clothes or money to buy electronics, more like the smile your mom gives you when you walk in the door after a terrible day at school, or the warmth of your dog as he tries to cuddle up to you in the middle of the night. Thats what I miss. Thats what everyone misses. Life.
I can’t think of sentimental stuff like that now, there's no time anymore. Emotions bring you down, its the facts that keep you afloat. At that thought I begin to think of all the facts I know about how this diseased world came to be. At first The Plague was nothing more than a flu that you could get protection from with medication, but The Plague mutated, evolved, it feasted on the medication until it built an immune system to fight it. All medication was failing, people everywhere were falling down dead, we had lost half of the the worlds population in a matter of days. That is, until a nuclear power plant killed the plague but brought along something even more nastier.
Ninety-five days after The Plague started taking lives, people were still dying left and right. No one noticed the emergency signals noting an overload in a nuclear power plant in the U.S.A. The power plant exploded, killing over three hundred thousand people in its wake, and leaving another two hundred thousand seriously injured. However the fumes that choked the world were the worst thing that our world has been through yet. The fumes were toxic to breathe for more than five minutes at a time, so it quickly killed the plague within a matter of hours. However with all of the nuclear fumes circulating the world the only people left to take it all in was the dead. The deceased started to rise from their graves. You know how most substances expand when heated and contract when cooled? Thats the same for the dead. Only when nuclear fumes is added, the dead rise but when the air is cleaned the dead fall. They did not come back to life fully though. They were only just walking corpses. Zombies you may call them. I’m different though. Since I died after the nuclear explosion from inhaling too many toxic fumes my symptoms are different. I breath like any other human being, I have warm blood pumping through my veins like every other human, the only thing that makes me different from a living person is that I am dead.
As I make my way through the centre of town dodging broken glass and sliding past abandoned cars, something catches my eye. Food. Actual food. Well a Mr Noodle thats probably been on the ground way too long, but even though I may have detested Mr Noodles before The Plague, I do not turn my head away from any source of food. Even if it is horrible, fat, nasty food I shall still eat it, but I guess that is just the gold medal athlete side of me who hates Mr Noodles.
I make my way through the the wreck of cars and buses to where the bag of Mr Noodles awaits. as I come closer to the Dollarama plastic bag I realize I have struck gold! Inside are not only three Mr Noodles, but five tins of flaked tuna, two chocolate bars, eight cans of tinned peaches, and to top it all off ten bottles of fresh, clean water! I shall have a real feast tonight.
While walking through the empty and desolate Cornwall Centre I start to think back to when I died, and how I didn't die at the same time. I had just come back from the grocery store with a bag filled with a loaf of bread, two eggs, and a bottle of milk. Our dairy rations for the week, when it happened. The sky turned grey and smoke started to drift in from every angle. I tried to run as fast as I could back to my house where my mother and sister were waiting. but I was too late. I had inhaled too many fumes and lay on the ground choking to death, my eyes began to slowly close I saw my life flash before my eyes reliving every moment in my life. I remembered the first light I ever saw as I came into the world, all the hugs and kisses I received in my short seventeen years of life. All the ex-boyfriends and best friends who slowly drifted away. The time I got arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol.The moment I was told that my father had an affair with some Russian gold digger and he had left mom to be with her. But the last thing I thought of before my eyes shut was that, less than a minute away was my little sister sick with the plague and my mother caring for her, waiting on the milk and eggs to make her a cake for her birthday which was today. Why couldn't I of just ran little bit faster? My eyes fluttered closed and with my final last breath I whispered the words “happy birthday” to my little sister waiting for me to come home.
Just then my eyes suddenly opened again! I didn't question anything all I knew is that I was saved. I was dead but some higher power (or nuclear gases) brought me back to life. I ran back home to my mother and sister with a giant smile on my face and bolted through the door to tell them how I was saved. But I was too late they were dead.They inhaled too many fumes. Unlike me they were both infected with the plague. The fumes killed them just as they did to me but they weren’t strong enough to fight it and be brought back from the dead like I was. Since my heart beat only just stopped, the toxic fumes had enough power to get it back pumping again in a matter of seconds. But i wasn’t infected. I was strong. The fumes that killed me saved my life. Why couldn’t my little sister be strong enough too? The thing is now that I can never die. I can never kill myself because I feel bad because of my mother and sisters death. No, I cannot do that. Unlike zombies that will eventually die from enough gunshots or from a direct shot to the head I just cannot die. No matter how many bullets can be shot at my head I will not fall. Not even falter a step. I am invincible. Well except to starvation, dehydration, old age etc. But they are too long of a wait to die. I will begin to think. To wonder, if this is really what my sister would have wanted. There are others like me out there. I just have to find them. Thats what I have been looking for when travelling from place to place. A safe haven, Utopia. a place where I can live out the rest of my life in peace. To remember my sister the way she would have wanted to remembered. In love.
I had just passed the ransacked Shoppers Drug Mart when I heard it. A scraping noise running along the window of EB Games. I turned around and realised that there is a whole pack of Zombies chasing me. Not Zombies like me who only kill to not be killed, but man eating Zombies who actually enjoy the taste of human flesh. Yuck. I sprint off as fast as I can trying to pull the gun out from the back of my jeans at the same time. I turned around and fired. A corpse drops dead. Yes! Only ten more to go. The good thing about Zombies is that they are not very intelligent. I have been jogging around in the same circle dodging their groping arms while trying to reload my gun for the last minute or two. Just as I am about to shoot the last one down it drops to the ground with a loud crash. Thats when I see the knife in the back of the Zombie’s head. Someones here. I manage to dodge the knife hurtling towards my head in just the nick of time. Although I could live through a knife to the head, it would give me a terrible headache in the morning and I cannot travel as much as I would like to with a migraine. Just then a tall, black hooded figure appears in front of the escalators.
“ Be careful where you throw next time.” I say just as the last word comes out of my mouth another knife comes flying towards my face. I catch it between my fingers and yawn as if this isn’t even hard for me. And it isn’t. This is childs play. After the dark, and brooding man takes another three shots at my head he finally gives up and I can speak.
“ Hey. I’m not a shooting target by the way” I say to to the hooded man.
“ You’re not from around here” the guy said.
“ No I’m not. Whats with the black pants and hoodie? Its a bit cliché don’t you think?” The man pulls down his hood and reveals his face. Oh wow… Sorry I got a bit distracted. It turns out that the guy that was just throwing knifes at my face is none other than Jack Hamilton. Star of the tragic failure of a sci-fi TV show “Timelight”. Not many people watched it though so he isn’t famous or anything. He’s a dark kind of man, he has high cheekbones that gives him a shadowy look to his face. His eyes are a dark green that are bold and piercing beside his pale skin. his hair is black with shades of grey highlighted throughout his hair (natural I might add as well.) Jack Hamilton is a unique one.
“ I wear black because its cold, and black, if you didn’t already know, keeps heat in. What's your name?” I contemplate whether to give him my real name, Skye or a fake name, probably Echo from my favourite TV show Dollhouse about these people who are imprinted with different personalities to be whoever the client wants. That unfortunately was also cancelled. In the end I decide on a fake name.
“ Echo. Yours?”
“ Blake” I know Blake is a fake name, but I play along anyway.
“ Alright Blake. What are you here for?”
“Same as you, supplies.”
“ How do you know I am looking for supplies?
“ I’ve been following you for the past half hour, saw you kill those men back there too. You should pay more attention to who’s following you. What did those men do to you anyway that you had to break their necks and murder them?”
“ For your information those men were trying to kill me. I knew they might have had family at home but they never even stopped to think about me, if I hadn’t kill them I would be tied to a chain-linked fence waiting to starve to death.
“You could have just knocked them out.”
“I did that the first time, then two weeks later I walk outside my tent only to find the same three men standing there ready to kill.” I said defensively.
“ Ok then… where are you heading?”
“ Can I tag along. I've got food to share and...well I have some people I have to get away from just now. “
“Alright. But if I tell you to leave you leave. Do you understand. Oh and are you alive or are you one of those dead people who look alive?
“ ...I’m dead too many fumes…”
“ Great! Me too. At least now I know you won’t kill me when you find out I’m dead.” I say with a smile on my face.
I turn on my heels and swagger out of the Cornwall Centre in the direction of Manitoba.The next province in my list of places Utopia could be, but I have a growing suspicion there is no Utopia. I have to hope though. It is the only thing that keeps me walking anymore. Hope. Out of the corner of my eye I see a Zombie, and just for no reason at all but to give Jack a warning at how good my knife skills are compared to his, I pull out one of my many daggers hidden under my clothes. Without even looking at my target, I flick my wrist and send the dagger flying into the skull of the Zombie. I turn around and give a seductive smile in the direction of Jack. He gives me a “what have I gotten myself into” kind of look, and with that I carry on with my journey to find Utopia and maybe, just maybe find a world worth living in.
End of Chapter One