Mindset – Part Two
‘Well now, like I said, I probably could a stayed a while longer, but you know how it is when you’re alone. You get to thinkin things, and with all the noise… well, I decided anyway I was coming up, coming out of that place, and believe me, it was scary and exciting all at the same time.
‘My plan was to clean out any of the monsters in the garden, as quietly as possible, and make it secure. Then, I’d take some supplies and scout the surrounding area. I didn’t want to go too far that day, just get the lay of the land, and make a plan.
‘I suited up, full gear, helmet, guns and extra ammo. I planned to use a hammer first off, and that’s what I did. It’s quieter that way, see. Keep the noise down. I waited until first light, figurin the twilight would confuse them, and opened the door.
‘Well, the next part I’m not too proud of, I gave a little scream. A yelp. A man sees one of them things for the first time, he can’t help himself.’
‘What did you see?’
‘There were two of ’em. Monsters. I recovered myself fairly quick, I’m proud to say, and stepped forward and caved the first one’s head right in. It’s not as easy as you see in the movies, but I had been keeping my strength up. I pushed it back into the yard, and hit the second one. I didn’t want them to get inside the bunker, so I pulled it closed behind me. The second one was harder to bring down, and I knew that takin a lot of them down was going to mean using a gun.
‘The good news was the rest of the yard was clear, if a little messed up. There was a break in the fence I was going to have to repair, and the vegetable patches needed a lot of work.’
‘What did you do then?’
‘Well, like I said, I wanted to get the lay of the neighbourhood. I made my way around the house and into the street, walking down towards the local shops. The supermarket wasn’t but a mile away, and I figured I could see if I could get there. That was as far as the plan went.
‘Anyway, it was quiet, no one, and nothing, around. I heard Misty, that’s my neighbour’s dog, barking away. I was surprised she survived, but then she always was a wily ol’ thing. The houses still looked in good repair, neighbourhood tidy enough. I walked for about twenty minutes, checking out the surroundings, ultra careful for any signs of the things.’
Cyril stopped and scratched his head. He didn’t really like to remember this part too much, and he didn’t want to sound crazy, but he knew the eyes already thought he was.
‘And that’s when you got to the supermarket,’ the man said. Cyril looked up from where he’d been staring at the floor.
‘Well, yeah. I approached, and there were a few, just milling around. I was creeping along the wall, and just thinkin if I could sneak past them and through the entrance, which was open. I wasn’t sure about going inside, it could be full a who knows what? But all that time alone, I guess I was just itchin to do something, and I knew I’d have to go in eventually.
‘I edged along the wall, trying to be quiet. They saw me soon enough though. The sun was coming up, and it was going to be a bright day. There must’ve been five or six. One of them came towards me, and I aimed the Remington, and took its head clean off.
‘The sound was bad, of course. Attracted others. I reloaded right quick, and took out two more, but by now there were nine or ten near me. I retreated towards the doors, hoping to get to some shelter. I fired as I went, two more shots, and out of shells. I slung the shotgun and drew a P99, fired off a few rounds. My aim wasn’t as good as I’d hoped, but I think I at least slowed a few of ’em down. I can’t say, but there was a crowd of them forming, the way they do.’
Cyril was shaking down, holding his right hand down with his left to try and stop it. In the end, he put his hand under his leg. He could feel it moving as he sat there, and his mind raced along with it.
‘There isn’t much more to it. I got inside, scoped out the situation. I’d misread it. There were more inside, and they were all making a hell of a noise. I fired off a few times to keep them at bay, ran inside, tried to create a defence out of some stacks of rice, or flour, or something.
‘For a while it was quiet. Then the noise came again. I looked up. It was almost like voices were shouting words at me, but by now I was totally scared. I was confused. Were there other survivors? Bound to be one or two, I thought, but I couldn’t be sure.
‘There was more shouting, and it seemed to me that some of the monsters had massed for an attack. I stood up, trying to pick some of them off, and that’s all I remember. When I woke up, I was in a hospital. Figure the survivors got to me, saved my life. I never did get to thank them.’
Cyril stopped speaking.
‘Thank you, Mr Dumont. No further questions, Your Honour.’
next: MINDSET – PART THREE
previous: MINDSET – PART ONE
more by RICHARD SHURY
Richard is a big fan of science fiction, but dabbles in other genres. For more short stories and longer self-pulished works by him visit Richard Shury.
For his articles on the issues of our time, or just day-to-day musings visit his blog rashury.co.uk.
photograph by Sylwia Bartyzel