If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Mon Dec 28, 2015 5:11 am

Omar: 1

[Monday, September 15th, 2025 – 7:35 PM]

From the outside, the Shatterback Saloon was no different from the other two dozen bars and restaurants situated on the streets of Sacramento. It was in a quaint location on the corner of S Street and 24th, tucked between two warehouses, one of which was abandoned and the other was owned by the Sacramento Police Department. In all honesty, the place was unremarkable in every way; the only thing it had going for it was the rough-and-tough outward appearance the establishment seemed to pride itself in maintaining. No matter what anybody had to say about it, Sacramento was a safe place in 2025. Compared to the wildish culverts of Junction and Cascadia, it was downright comfortable. One could live a relatively normal life without ever leaving the city limits. When you were in the Shatterback, though, you were in the ‘shady part of town’, which to be honest wasn’t far off. However, patrons acted as if the ASF could burst in at any moment and start shooting the place up, at which point everyone would take up arms to defend what little we had. In reality it was just a dirty place with rude management, good drinks, and some abandoned buildings scattered around. It drew in a select group of people who loved the post-apocalyptic life but hated having to work in order to survive. Even the name of the bar was meant to satisfy fantasies of badassery and bravado: supposedly, the man who owned the bar was present during the reclamation of Sacramento. During the process, he got in a disagreement with another survivor, and in the resulting fight he was shoved back-first through the plate glass window and into the building that eventually became his place of business. No part of the story impressed me. I only went there because they had cheap whiskey.

We always chose to sit at a booth rather than at the bar. The lack of privacy offered in the establishment was a concern, considering the field of work we were in. I didn’t trust the bartender to not listen in either. I knew he wouldn’t **** in my drink, but I wouldn’t be comfortable telling him about my relationship issues, not that I had any.

That night, there were only two of us at our usual booth: myself and Foster. Foster had dark gray hair and he often left his facial hair to grow out for several weeks at a time before shaving. According to the thorough coat of patchy gray hair on his cheeks and neck, he was just about to start his cycle anew. None of us liked to wear our uniforms when we weren’t on duty for obvious reasons, so he was clad in blue jeans and a dull yellow polo shirt with every button undone, displaying some of his chest hair for all to see. He had a torso like a barrel and matching limbs, so there was a lot of hair to look at. Foster was the oldest street cop in our department at fifty-seven years old; he refused to take promotions since he insisted he would do more good behind the wheel of a car or the bore of a gun instead of behind a desk, which was one of the things I respected about him. Like many of the people in Sacramento’s police force, including me, he had been a cop before the zombies – I don’t remember exactly where, but it was somewhere in the South. When Sacramento was being rebuilt, the police system was one of the first things set up, and people with prior experience were necessary for the creation to be effective.

When our first round of drinks arrived at our booth, I tipped the bartender a few bucks and slid my glass of Four Roses bourbon in front of me. It wasn’t the best drink out there, but it was cheap and gave a pretty good kick on Monday night. Foster rubbed his eyes thoroughly and let out a yawn before grabbing his drink, a tall glass of beer with the white foam barely extending past the brim. None of us liked drinking cheap, but it was cheap or nothing.

“Monday getting to you, eh?”
“Getting to me, got to me, and fucked me sideways,” Foster confirmed, lifting his glass. “Happy thirteenth.” I lifted my glass and clinked it into his, and we both took our first sip of liquid. On that day, it happened to be the thirteenth anniversary of the beginning of the end of days. Nobody knew exactly when the first zombie appeared, but the period from September 10th through the end of the month was always a sobering few weeks as people looked back on what had occurred. Some places even closed their doors in respect for the dead, but most of the city operated like normal.
“You know about the speeding ticket situation, right? It’s being put into action city-wide now.” Foster stated, wiping his mouth. He began tearing up one of his napkins into small pieces and rolling them into balls with his thumb and forefinger, a habit he often exhibited at the bar.
“I got one yesterday in my rental. Flashed my badge, and got it shoved in my face anyway...as if I didn’t have enough bills to pay.”
“Let me tell you, it’s horrible writing those things now. Everybody speeds, damnit! That was one of the rules that went with the old world. I’m telling you right now, a cop is going to get shot by an angry speeder one of these days, and that ordinance is going right out the window. Stupid…”

While we were talking, a man entered the bar and immediately approached our booth. He was around six feet tall and scrawny. His head hair was full and styled, making him look slightly top-heavy when compared to the rest of his body, and when his gait was factored in, it looked like he was perpetually leaning forward as he walked, as if he was about to fall face-first to the ground and break his nose. In his left hand, he was carrying a brown leather file case. I was on the side of the booth facing the door, and when I made eye contact, I waved him over. It was Kevin Whitaker, another detective from the department who worked closely with me for several years. He was younger than me and less experienced. In fact, he was barely out of school when the zombies came a-knocking, but he was hardened enough that his young age wasn’t a major factor in his work.

“Whitaker, sit down and get a drink, you ****. Late as usual.” Foster said boisterously. He wiped his chubby face again and began tearing into the small pepperoni pizza we had ordered with our drinks.
“Only one or two for me tonight. I gotta bounce home for a bit to talk to wifey.”
“And whose fault is that?” I asked, taking a drink and looking sideways at Kevin with a smirk. I never liked his wife, and I tried to get him to avoid commitment back when he and his wife were only dating, but the conniving broad got him to propose. Sacramento didn’t have any draconian divorce laws, luckily for him, but he just wouldn’t believe the relationship was over until the fat lady sung. Since his wife was packing on the pounds in her unemployed state, I guessed it wouldn’t be much longer until that happened too.

“Blow it out your ****, Omar. The reason I’m late is because boss-man had a present.” Kevin slapped the brown file case down on the table in front of Foster before taking a seat next to me.
“Come on. No work at the bar!” Foster protested. “This is the one place we go to avoid all that.”
“It’s not for me or you. It’s for Omar.”
“Oh. Never mind then.” Foster took a sip of his beer and almost spit it back out laughing as I flipped him the bird and took the file case in hand to investigate its weight. Unfortunately for me, it seemed fairly heavy, meaning it wasn’t going to be open and shut.
“Any idea what it is?”
“I know you’re already working a murder, but I thumbed through that a little, and it looks like you might have a second.” Kevin explained apologetically. “You’ll probably get called in to boss-man’s office tomorrow for the actual assignment. Until then, there’s that.”
“Damnit. Alright. I’ll take a look through when I get home. For now I want to enjoy my drink.”

The three of us finished our pizza and ordered more food. Kevin decided he didn’t want alcohol and ordered a joint instead. Foster ordered more beer, and I stuck with whiskey. Once the pizza was gone, we split a massive platter of onion rings and fries with basically every dipping sauce we could think of in little plastic serving cups. Ignoring Kevin blowing smoke in my face every once in a while, it was a very relaxing meal, and I silently thanked God for it. The city might have been an urban nightmare for some people, but I always remembered to appreciate its existence and worth. Speeding tickets aside, there were few regulations and rules to abide by, which worked well for the small population within the city limits. Compared to the other trade-states, Sacramento was better off in almost every way.

When the night was over and the drinks were gone, I parted ways with the coworkers and left, file case in hand. I walked several blocks to the parking lot where I left the Subaru Legacy I rented as transportation. Sure, it might’ve been almost twenty years old, but it still purred like a kitten and it had less than a hundred thousand miles on it.
Last edited by coinsruledude on Sat Jan 23, 2016 1:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Sun Jan 17, 2016 12:51 am

(For reference, this is the type of armor Clyde and Marcus get from the armory:
http://www.millrjess.accountsupport.com ... th-Bag.jpg)

Marcus: 6

With the armory cracked and the inmates in total control of the building, Marcus knew his plan was going well. All they needed to do was restock the prison with enough supplies to outlast a government-orchestrated siege for a week or two. Blaine and Marcus distributed weaponry and bulletproof vests to Clyde, Malcolm, Howard, and J.J. There were only two full SWAT suits available, and a quick tournament of rock-paper-scissors amongst the six inmates decided that Clyde and Marcus won the right to wear them. At first it was difficult to get used to the heavy protective clothing, but after a few minutes of walking through the prison corridors, the movements became more natural. Marcus made sure to lock the armory before they left for the cafeteria to distribute weapons and execute the next step in the plan.

Prisoners immediately stood aside to let Marcus’s crew pass. Most of them were confused and surprised by the appearance of armored men in the building, since they thought all the guards had been driven away. Once they realized the men were inmates, not actual authority figures, they began following to see where the group was going. The cafeteria fell dead silent when Marcus and his crew entered the room. Hushing two hundred voices at once was no small feat, and Marcus used the feeling of euphoria and excitement the situation gave him to jump on a table and talk to the prisoners.
“This is our prison now!” he said. “We run this place – not the guards, not the government. Anyone still in this building will definitely be killed when the feds come and take this place back, so it’d be a good idea to listen to me so you don’t die. I control the armory now, so I control what goes on around here. We need food and water. The cafeteria only has so much, and it’s all garbage. We need some people to come with us and help rob the Wal-Mart up in Salem. Anyone who wants in can come offer their help now. If you’re staying, don’t cause any trouble or you’ll regret it.”

With his directions vocalized, Marcus stepped down from the table and returned to the entrance to the cafeteria. To emphasize what he said, Blaine and Malcolm dropped a small bin of pistols and ammunition on the floor; the equipment was intended to arm other inmates so they could help in the robbery. After a brief silence, conversation began in the cafeteria again, although it was hushed and many pairs of eyes were glancing over at the armored inmates. Keylon, accompanied by three other black men who Marcus recognized as part of Keylon’s gang, were the first to approach after a few minutes of tense waiting.
“We want in on what you’re doin’.” Keylon stated, looking to his cronies for confirmation. They all nodded.
“Are you all cool?” Marcus asked. “The only way you’re getting a gun is if you agree to give it back after we leave the Wal-Mart. Guns aren’t going to float around here like cigarettes, got that?”

“That’s fine. We’re on the same page,” Keylon agreed. J.J., who was unarmored and toting the shotgun he stole from the police cruiser, scoffed. “You got somethin’ to say?”
“J.J., shut the **** up. They wanna help.” Blaine stated nonchalantly.
“Keylon, you and your boys can come with us,” Marcus replied. “We’ll leave when we get a few more people.”

[Tuesday, September 18th, 2012 – 1:36 PM]

Despite waiting a half hour, no more inmates agreed to come with Marcus. Whether it was because of Keylon’s involvement or general fear of the idea, nobody else stepped forward, meaning they had a total group of ten people. Since the prison didn’t have any vehicles available on hand, they were forced to walk on foot to Salem, which was situated about six miles from Western Virginia Regional. It was slow-going and the atmosphere around the inmates was tense because of their attitudes towards one another; Marcus and his close associates forced the four volunteers to walk ahead of them to avoid getting shot in the back for whatever reason, be it disloyalty or random violence. Marcus knew for a fact that Keylon and his fellow gang members were in prison for violent crimes ranging the whole spectrum, so he wanted to be cautious.

Not long after leaving the prison, Blaine dropped to his knees in a coughing fit. The entire line of inmates stopped and looked back, wondering what was happening. A couple seconds after falling, he got to his feet with some assistance.
“Are you sick?” Clyde asked, lifting the visor on his SWAT helmet. He let the AR-15 he had taken from the armory dangle from its shoulder strap while he and Howard helped Blaine to his feet.
“Probably. I feel like ****, but I’m still good to go.” Blaine said, attempting to reassure the group that he was fit to help achieve their goal. Marcus wasn’t so sure; the man looked clammy and pale, and his voice was raspy. It looked like he had some kind of flu.
“Take it easy so you don’t kill yourself.” J.J. commented.
“Don’t slow down for me. Let’s get this **** done.” With a quick shake of the head, Blaine started walking again, keeping pace behind the rest of the prisoners.

[2:43 PM]

By the time Salem came into view, a roadblock presented itself. A large group of people was gathered just outside the city. The crowd appeared to be stagnant since there was no clear direction where they were going or what they were doing. Whether it was a protest or some other event, it was blocking their path

“Aw, ****.” Marcus said, craning his neck to see the extent of the crowd. He had been hoping for an easy in-and-out rush through the city, but it was clear their plan was going to have to change.
“The **** are these people?” Keylon demanded, looking at Clyde.
“Why the hell would I know? I came from the same place you did.” Clyde replied angrily. He whirled around when the sound of snapping twigs carried itself over the sound of the inmates’ bickering. A solitary figure dressed in dirty blue jeans and a white T-shirt came stumbling from the side of the road behind the men. Rather than human-like features, the approaching man had a stone-cold glare and discolored skin. Red streaks coated the front of his shirt and the length of his arms.

“Stop! Police!” Clyde commanded authoritatively, raising his weapon. Marcus also raised his weapon while everybody else backed away from the stranger, not wanting to get caught in the line of fire. “Get down on the ground now! Do you understand me? Get down now!”
Instead of abiding by the orders, the stranger kept walking, getting uncomfortably close to Clyde as the ex-cop continued to yell commands loudly. Once the breech of personal space became too much, Clyde let loose a burst from his weapon, hitting the figure square in the chest.
“**** ****!” J.J. yelled in an aggravated tone. “Cops will be all over us now!” He quieted down when he noticed that the stranger was still standing, dark blood seeping from the bullet holes made in his chest. Clyde lowered the barrel of his weapon and backed away, aghast. After the gunshots, noises began emanating from around the group of men. More figures began emerging from an outlying tree line and the tall grass on the side of the road. All of them had the same deathly appearance as the first man, and some were carrying wounds that would’ve caused a normal person to fall down and go into shock. Marcus noticed one in particular missing a good chunk of his hand, and another had one of her eyeballs sliced open, resulting in a bloody mess on one side of her face.

“What the ****?” Howard breathed.
“Let’s keep going. Now!” Marcus said loudly. The inmates began jogging away from the scene, with all of the strange people following in unison, including the one that Clyde shot.
“They must be on some strong drugs.” Blaine said between breaths.
“No, it’s something else,” Clyde said, his voice somewhat panicked. “I shot that **** in the chest. Straight-up, point-blank, in the heart. He should not be moving.” As they got closer to the crowd of people, which was about a quarter-mile away, the inmates realized that the entire mass was made up of the people with discolored skin, dead stares, and corpse-like appearance.

“Into the ‘burbs! **** this!” Keylon shouted. He and his allies darted down a side street that led away from the main road and into a small neighborhood on the outskirts of Salem. Without anywhere else to go, the rest of the inmates followed.

“Stop at the first house!” Marcus demanded. The inmates congregated at the front door of a two-story mansion at the edge of the neighborhood. They appeared to be in a wealthy part of town, so the buildings around them were massive and luxurious, built for the upper class. Clyde broke in the front door and swept through the foyer with his AR-15 at the ready; his training as a police officer was apparent in how he conducted himself. Within minutes, he and the rest of the inmates confirmed that the house was empty. As they all met back up in the foyer, Blaine broke into another coughing fit. He recovered quicker than the first time and joined everyone in the discussion.
“Did everyone see what I **** saw?” Malcolm asked.
“We sure did.” Marcus replied.
“Marcus, remember those cops we shot? They looked sick, just like those people.” J.J. mentioned.
“Yeah…and that guy I killed in the house. He was the same way.” Marcus said, deep in thought. Clyde sighed and chuckled a little, beside himself.
“Is anyone else thinking of zombies?”
“No way.” J.J. said dismissively.
“Did you **** see what I did to that guy?” Clyde demanded. He pointed to his own heart and made an explosion noise, mimicking the action with his hand. “What else is it?”
“We can find out right now.” one of Keylon’s friends said. He was standing in front of a massive picture window in the living room to the left of the foyer, and he pointed out to the front yard where a single woman was struggling to walk up to the house the inmates were holed up in. She was acting like she was drunk, but she was still somehow aware of the noise in the house.

“Marcus, come on. We have the armor.” Clyde said, motioning for Marcus to follow him. The pair exited the house; the rest of the inmates watched from the safety of the structure via the windows.
“Ma’am, can you hear me?” Marcus asked. The woman was letting out a constant low moan from her throat, making it sound like she was trying to yell but unable to formulate the correct sounds.
“I’m going to shoot you!” Clyde feigned, attempting to illicit a reaction from the woman. Instead, she lunged at him, attempting to bite at his right upper arm, which was padded and covered by several layers of protection. He pushed the woman away and started backpedaling.
“Let’s lead her inside.” he said in a low tone. Marcus obliged, but he wasn’t sure how useful the woman would be. Whatever her condition was, it made her impossible to reason with; they wouldn’t be able to get any kind of tangible information directly from her whatsoever.
“Come on inside.” Clyde said jokingly, grabbing the woman by the back of the neck and escorting her into the foyer. The other inmates understandingly took a few steps back, forming a rough circle around Clyde and the woman.

“The hell’s wrong with you?” Keylon asked. The woman snapped her teeth and reached out at him; Clyde and Marcus each took one of her arms, effectively restraining her.
“****, she does look like a zombie,” J.J. commented, poking the woman with the barrel of his shotgun. “I could blow her brains out right now, and she keeps pushing to get at me. Damn.”

All of a sudden, one of Keylon’s cronies swung at the woman’s legs with a golf club, which he retrived from a set in a nearby closet he was searching. The strike connected with the side of her knee, snapping it inward and leaving the lower half of her limb essentially useless. The club narrowly missed Marcus’s armored legs, prompting him to jump back with a yell of anger.
“What’re you doing, man?”
“Provin’ if she a zombie!” the gang member replied, whacking the woman’s other leg in the same place. Clyde dropped her, and the woman began crawling along the floor pitifully, attempting to get at the closest inmates with all of her physical ability, which wasn’t must without use of her legs. The man who crippled the zombie continued beating its legs until the club bent into an unusable angle, at which point he finally stopped.

“Look at that. Broken bones, lacerations, and tendon damage, and yet she’s still going.” Clyde marveled.
“This is fucked up,” Marcus said, giving Clyde a dirty look. “We need to get her out of here so we can make a new plan in peace…”
“Come on, how about we have a little fun first?” Clyde asked.
“What? Do you want to rape it?” Marcus asked. He was promptly pushed away violently.
“I was never convicted on the rape! They got me for criminal battery and abuse of power, and that’s it!”

“Oh, alright,” Marcus said, waving his hands in the air. “I get it: raping it would probably infect you if this is really zombies, right? That’s why you won’t do it…”
“Marcus, I had your word that you and I would work together through this ****,” Clyde growled through clenched teeth. Don’t make me regret leaving my cell, you stupid ****.”

“Hey, ain’t he bit?” Keylon spoke up, pointing at Blaine. The foyer quieted down; the female zombie tried biting at Clyde’s feet until he placed a foot on her neck and applied pressure, keeping her from doing any harm.
“What did you say?” Clyde asked quietly, his argument with Marcus put on hold. The inmates all gravitated their gaze to Blaine, who was standing near the entrance to the mansion’s living room.

“If this is zombies, biting is the main way of getting it, right? If rape’ll do it, bites should.” Keylon explained, fingering the trigger on his loaned pistol.
“We don’t know **** about anything yet…” Marcus said, trying to clear the air and get the inmates to settle down for a few minutes.
“I didn’t get bit by anybody looking like that,” Blaine said defensively, pointing at the zombie under Clyde’s foot. “I did get bit, but it wasn’t…you know. The person wasn’t all bloody! I feel fine.”
“What about your cough?” J.J. asked, slowly stepping away from Blaine.
“I’m sick! I thought we established that,” Blaine replied, laughing lightly. His face turned serious when none of the other inmates turned away from him and the room remained silent. “Guys, for ****’s sake, I’m telling you, I’m fine. What we really need to worry about is the **** crowd of them a half-mile away. Are we still going to Wal-Mart?”
“Don’t change the subject,” Clyde said coldly. “If you’re fine, then you’ll be fine. That’s your problem…but yeah, you’re right.” As he talked, Clyde began putting more pressure on the zombie’s neck with his leg. If it had been a normal human, they would’ve started suffocating, but the zombie had no visible reaction other than not being able to shift its head as much.

“Let’s just chill for a couple minutes and make sure there no more people gunning for this house, alright? Give me a second.” Marcus said, walking into the living room, which stretched for seemingly far longer than it had any reason to. On the other side, past two leather couches and a large flat-screen TV, he found the kitchen. J.J. followed him while Blaine, Malcolm, and Howard took seats on the couches. Keylon’s group and Clyde continued messing with the zombie, amused with its crawling and gnashing teeth.

“Are we still going to Salem?” J.J. asked. He made sure nobody else was within earshot before he started talking to Marcus.
“I don’t know anymore.”
“Maybe we shouldn’t. Between us, Clyde, Blaine, Howard, and the street cheetahs, we don’t have enough people to raid a big-box store full of zombies or whatever.”
“What we really need is cars. It’ll be impossible to get anything back otherwise. I was counting on getting some of the trucks they have at the store, but with all of this **** happening, there might not be any.” Marcus explained, opening the refrigerator to see what was inside. Evidently the power was out, so a lot of the food had spoiled, causing a waft of bad odor to hit their faces. He closed the offending appliance and started rummaging through cupboards, looking for any kind of sustenance to fill his stomach.

“That’s not the biggest problem – if there’s zombies everywhere, then the truck drivers won’t be there to drive away. What about that huge crowd we saw? Can we pass it? There’s no way we can gun through with what we have. Ain’t-no-way.”

Marcus shut the cupboards and leaned on the circular oak kitchen table, thinking. Thoughts of returning to the prison empty-handed filled his head, but he rejected the idea. He needed to assert dominance over the inmates, or else he wouldn’t be able to influence them. Failing their first robbery would make him and everybody else look weak, which was a recipe for disaster. In addition, his entire plan hinged on the idea that the government was going to storm the prison to retake control of the facility. With zombies dominating the region, it seemed there were no police officers or SWAT teams for a hundred miles. If there was some kind of collapse all the way up to the upper government level, his plan would become a lot easier.

“Our plan is staying the same.” Marcus decided, standing up straight and looking at J.J.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes. Don’t you see? The feds aren’t coming for us because they’re too distracted with the zombies. We have a long time to sit and wait – maybe even forever, if this **** is bad enough.”
“You think we can stay in the prison indefinitely?”
“You’re damn right. Defending against that writhing thing under Clyde’s boot is a thousand times easier than defending against people like Clyde.”

[3:00 PM]

Once he explained his decision to the other inmates, they all agreed, although some were more reluctant than others to push further into Salem. Keylon and Clyde were both apprehensive, but with coaxing from their allies, they agreed to the new plan, which was to cross over into Salem via a small patch of woods bordering the neighborhood. From experience and knowledge of the area, Marcus knew that the Wal-Mart was only a half-mile away from their location, and if they crossed north, they would bypass a major concentration of businesses in exchange for passing through another neighborhood.
“You’re the one who knows your way around here, so you need to lead the way.” Clyde said, holding his weapon in-hand.”
“Before we go, make sure you guys grab the rest of those golf clubs,” Marcus said, pointing at the gnarled piece of equipment that Keylon’s friend used to beat the zombie’s legs. “We aren’t really prepared for up-close fighting, so anything will help. Don’t shoot your gun unless you need to.” Keylon and his fellow gang members listened to Marcus and emptied the golf bag, arming themselves with melee weapons in addition to their pistols.

As a group, the inmates exited the house, leaving the crippled and badly beaten female zombie crawling around in the foyer. They headed north along the side street, away from the road that led to the horde. They took the first right and ended up in a court of houses where no zombies were visible. Marcus thrashed his way through the thin strip of brush separating neighborhoods, and the rest of his group followed. They ran into two zombies in the woods, a man and a woman, but they were both quickly dispatched by Keylon, who was second in line behind Marcus. He was using a driver, so the heavy instrument did a terrible toll on the zombies’ heads, leaving them immobile on the ground after multiple strikes to the head. After crossing into the next neighborhood, it wasn’t long before the inmates found themselves sitting underneath a cluster of trees behind the Wal-Mart. Surprisingly, the entire back end of the store was filled with semi-trucks, some of which were parked up against the loading bay while others were parked elsewhere, permanently waiting in line to fill the store with goods.

“I’ll be able to get those trucks moving if they have gas.” Hector stated. “The ones in place by the loading bay will be better so we don’t have to screw around with parking.”
“We need to have two teams,” Marcus reasoned, thinking about the best way to approach the store. There was an unknown number of zombies inside, so it was extremely important to go in with enough firepower to take on whatever was hidden within the walls. “Hector, how fast could you, Blaine, and Malcolm get the trucks running?”
“It would only take a few minutes, but there a bunch of zombies would be coming for us once they hear the engines start up.”
“Clyde, can you hold down the parking area while they get the trucks? The rest of us will go in the store and start moving pallets around.”
“Sounds good.

“Let’s get goin’.” Keylon said in agreement. As one group, they jogged down the small hill in front of them that led to the Wal-Mart. A short concrete wall that marked the superstore’s property blocked their path, but one by one they scaled the barrier with assistance from the other inmates. Marcus, who was helping the others over the wall by interlocking his hands and boosting their feet, was pulled up by J.J. The pair jumped down and met up with Keylon’s gang, who was busy dealing with a small pack of zombies that populated the parking lot. Their golf clubs weren’t as effective as other weapons would have been, but they got the job done. By the end of the initial fighting, seven zombies were lying dead on the pavement. Hector’s team got to work on two trucks in the middle of the loading bay with the others broke into the store via a back door.

Once inside, Marcus and his team were immediately greeted by a male zombie dressed in a Wal-Mart manager’s uniform, which was splattered with smudges of blood. Marcus grabbed the figure and threw it to the side, forcing it to trip over a short stack of boxes; one of Keylon’s cronies finished the zombie off with his golf club, striking the zombie with overhead blows until his golf club broke. He stabled the jagged broken end of the handle end into the face of the creature, killing it for good.

“Everybody be quiet.” Marcus demanded. He began walking through the narrow employee’s only area of the store with his AR-15 in hand. They passed by multiple stacks of boxes containing everything from cereal and granola bars to shampoo and laundry soap. There weren’t any more zombies in sight, but when Marcus passed one of the double-doors that led into the actual store, his heart skipped a few beats. Inside the shopping area, massive numbers of zombies were haphazardly packed between the shelves. Bloody scenes of a violent massacre were apparent; blood had dried in puddles on the floor, which were cracked and smeared around by the wandering undead. Most of the objects stocked on the shelves had been tossed carelessly to the floor by the crowd, where they were trampled and kicked underfoot.

“Jesus Christ.” Keylon breathed.
“If we stay quiet, we can still do this.” Marcus stated quietly. “I saw a pallet jack by the entrance that we can use. There’s another one down the hall, see?”
“What do we need to take?” Keylon inquired, following Marcus back to where they entered the store. Marcus grabbed the pallet jack he had noticed when they first entered; it was painted yellow and had no motorized components, so it would be safer to use in the vicinity of the zombies. There was an abandoned forklift parked near the back of the store as well, but he reasoned that it would be too loud, especially because of the beeping sounds it would make when backing up.

“Canned food and water. Be careful that you don’t spill the pallets or make too much noise.” Marcus stated, passing the handle of the pallet jack to Keylon.
“Making the niggers to do the heavy lifting, eh?” J.J. asked jokingly once Keylon’s gang went to start retrieving pallets from the backstock.
“J.J., shut the **** up.” Marcus said apathetically, exiting the building to check on how Hector’s team was progressing. Clyde was standing idle, keeping an eye on the surrounding area, while Blaine, Malcolm, and Blaine were busy inside the cabs of the trucks, trying to hotwire the vehicles so they could escape with the supplies they were gathering. From the look of how empty the parking lot was, no significant number of zombies noticed the inmates enter the store.

Over the course of a half-hour, the inmates slowly moved pallet after pallet of merchandise into the two semi-truck trailers. One of the trucks was already partially loaded with paper products, including toilet paper and paper towels, so they were saved some work. Once the trucks were hotwired and prepped for the trip back to the prison, Howard’s group entered the store and helped move stock into the trucks. During their progress, Blaine nearly passed out and collapsed on the ground. J.J. and Clyde helped him sit down and take a break. He continued claiming he was healthy, but his condition was visibly worsening as time went on.
“When we get back to the prison, we’ll need to put you in your cell for a few days to make sure you don’t get anybody else sick.” Clyde said.
“Yeah, whatever. I’m fine – I’m just exhausted from the walk.”

Once the trucks were completely packed with as much as possible, they shut the trailers and exited the store, making sure to leave the pallet jacks in the trucks so they could remove their stolen goods as needed. Marcus was ecstatic with how they were progressing; there were no setbacks, and despite rushing in blind, they were able to get everything they wanted and more. However, they ran into a logistical problem when the inmates went to leave the store: the cabs of the trucks weren’t big enough to fit all ten of the inmates comfortably.
“Ain’t no way I’m sharin’ a cab with four of you. There ain’t room for three, let alone five.” Keylon demanded.
“Well, too **** bad. There’s no other option.” J.J. argued.
“Yeah, there is,” Marcus said. “There’s enough room in the back for a couple people to ride with the cargo.”
“It’s not going to be me.” Blaine said angrily.
“Whatever. You guys can figure that out,” Marcus said. “I’m not coming back with you guys.”
“Why not?” J.J. inquired.
“I need to take care of something. I’m going home to get some stuff.”

“Well, you’re not going alone. Somebody’s gotta have your back.” J.J. demanded. Marcus was fine with J.J. coming along; the two were cellmates, so they had some level of companionship with one another. Clyde also offered to stay behind and help Marcus, so Keylon’s group and Blaine’s group left in the trucks after bidding them good luck. Keylon and one of his allies drove in the first truck with the other two gang members in the back of their trailer, while Blaine, Hector, and Malcolm squeezed themselves into the remaining cab. With some difficulty, the inmates steered the unwieldy vehicles around the store and disappeared, leaving Marcus, J.J., and Clyde behind.

[3:42 PM]

Not long after the semi-trucks departed, the three remaining inmates trudged back the way they came through the neighborhoods, searching for a working vehicle. There was a surprising lack of cars on the streets, so they were forced to break into multiple houses and check the garages. More than once they found suitable cars inside, but they were blocked in by the heavy garage doors, which wouldn’t open without electricity. Because the houses were built for the wealthy, many of them also had security features making it difficult to steal the cars from inside. After breaking into a fourth house proved to be useless, Clyde spoke up.
“Why do you need to go home anyway?”
“It’s nearby, so why not? I have a few guns there.”
“We already have a **** armory, though...” J.J. said. He was trailing a few feet behind Clyde and Marcus, who were walking side-by-side down the middle of the residential street.

“Look, I just want to check out my house, alright? It won’t hurt anything to see if we can find out what’s going on a bit more.” Marcus said defensively. In reality, he wanted to visit his property one last time before he returned to the prison. In all likelihood, he wasn’t going to return, so he wanted to gather up some personal items that he had left behind. He was hoping his wife didn’t get rid of all his possessions, but it wouldn’t have been a surprise to him if she did.

After a long search, the trio finally found a pickup truck haphazardly parked in front of a house near the edge of the neighborhood. The keys were in the ignition, but luckily the battery wasn’t dead; the car started without a problem. Marcus drove with J.J. in the passenger seat and Clyde in the back.

[4:51 PM]

What should have been a twenty-minute drive took almost an hour and a half due to detours they were forced to take around zombie groups that were too numerous to drive through. When they finally got to Dorset Drive, nothing looked out of place to Marcus. Several cars were parked out on the street, but none of them had doors hanging open as if the driver had been yanked out by the undead. The only zombie in sight was in the form of a corpse lying in the middle of the road, a small-caliber bullet in its forehead. Marcus parked the truck in front of a two-story colonial that was situated on a bend in the road.
“Nice place.” J.J. commented.
“Yeah, it was.” Marcus replied bitterly, thinking back to the night the police had degradingly dragged him out of his own house. He, J.J., and Clyde approached the house with their weapons lowered, not expecting to run into any danger. Marcus dug around in a patch of dirt near his front door before cracking open a fake stone and procuring a spare key from inside. When he tried the doorknob, the door unlocked, but it still wouldn’t open.
“What the ****?” Marcus said under his breath. He tried forcing the door, but it wouldn’t budge. He and Clyde began pounding on the wood in unison, and eventually they broke open the entrance. A series of wooden boards had been nailed over the inside, sealing it shut until the pair of men were able to loosen the nails from the wood. As they entered the house and looked around, Marcus noticed much of the furniture had been rearranged. The couch he remembered had been replaced with a leather alternative, and the armchair he often rested in after work was missing.

“You guys can go check the upstairs.” Marcus said. Clyde and J.J. headed up to the second floor while Marcus continued walking around the first floor, checking what the house looked like. Out of curiosity, he went to the kitchen and opened the refrigerator, finding it mostly empty. Most of the cupboards, however, were well-stocked with canned food and nonperishables, which was odd. He knew that his wife didn’t like to have a bunch of food piled in the cabinets, because it would sit there for months and never be opened. Just before he went into the basement, he heard the sound of a single shotgun blast followed by a shrill scream. He recognized both noises: the gunshot came from his Remington 870, which he used to bring with him on hunting trips, and the scream was his wife’s.

He rushed upstairs with his AR-15 in hand. No more gunshots rang out on his way upstairs, and when he got to the top of the stairs, he ran into J.J., who was just about to run down to the first floor.
“We found a lady,” he commented. “Me and Clyde are alright, but she nearly got us with a gun.”
“Where is she?” Marcus demanded.
“Clyde has her in the bedroom over there.” J.J. replied, pointing at Marcus’s own bedroom. He pushed by J.J. and walked through the door, finding Clyde wrestling to keep control of his wife’s movements. The heavy armor that he was wearing made the job much easier, since she couldn’t scratch or punch him effectively. All she could do is thrash and try to break out of his iron grip. Even though he had been in prison for less than a year, Marcus barely recognized his wife. She had put on a bit of weight, making her pudgy-looking than he remembered. Her hair was also cut short, revealing more of her face than he was used to. She was screaming at the top of her lungs at Clyde and the other men in the room, and eventually she made eye contact with Marcus.

“Marcus! What the hell are you doing here, you son of a ****?” she yelled. Her voice was whiny and high-pitched.
“Is this is your wife?” J.J. guessed, stepping into the room after Marcus, who took a moment to reply. He bent over and picked up his Remington from the bedroom floor. He found that it still had three shells ready to be fired.
“Yeah, it is.”
“Now I understand why you were in prison. Jesus Christ!” Clyde grunted, throwing Marcus’s wife to the ground. He was finally able to pin her down, but she continued struggling despite the fact that it was becoming painful to do so. After the initial shock of seeing her wore off, Marcus began to wonder how his wife managed to survive through the zombies. She obviously had some awareness of what was happening; the barricaded front door and the mass of food in the kitchen indicated to him that she was able to find some supplies before locking herself in the house.
“Is there anyone else with you?” Clyde demanded, putting pressure on Marcus’s wife’s neck.
“For God’s sake, no! Let me up, you animals!”
“This is a waste of our time,” J.J. said irritably. “The trucks have definitely gotten back to the prison already, and Blaine is too **** sick to deal with anything right now. We gotta get back ASAP or more riots will pop.”
“Do you want to just leave her here?” Clyde asked J.J.
“Yeah. What do you wanna do? Off her?”
“She nearly killed us! Right, Marcus? Come on, you know she deserves what she’s got coming to her!”

Without a doubt, Marcus had some positive feelings left for his wife. Their relationship hadn’t been the best, but they got together in the first place for a reason. However, he also resented her. He spent a year in jail because of her. He was in cahoots with the kind of people who deserved to get shot in the head, but instead he was helping them shoot other people. He had been corrupted, and he knew it, and he blamed it on her. That, along with Clyde’s anger and talk of revenge, encouraged him to point his Remington at her head and pull the trigger in one swift movement. The blast hit the side of her head that was facing Marcus, causing a large portion of her head to burst open in a veil of red. Clyde and J.J. both flinched and stepped back, not expecting the sudden shot. Still riding his burst of adrenaline, Marcus fired the remaining two shots into her body despite the fact that she was already dead, unleashing the anger he had built up within his body and his mind.

“Jesus, Marcus.” J.J. remarked.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Sun Jan 24, 2016 2:04 am

Omar: 2

[Monday, September 15th, 2025 – 9:23 PM]

Traffic wasn’t particularly bad through Midtown, so I got home in a reasonable amount of time. I lived in the former Hyatt Regency on L Street. Post-liberation, some clever entrepreneur and his cronies cleaned the place up and managed to peddle the old hotel rooms as luxury apartments, which was a great investment for them. I found myself staying there after I got my job with the police force; a room happened to open up, so I jumped at the opportunity. My decision wasn’t the hardest to make: it was either take the apartment or live out in the boonies on the outskirts of Sacramento. Parking wasn’t a big pain, which was a shock to me. Most people should’ve been home by nine-thirty on a Monday, but I found a spot on the second level of the attached parking garage. Before I left my car, I had to stop and wipe the sleep from my eyes; I was drunk, but not so drunk that I couldn’t drive, at least in my opinion. There wasn’t much enforcement for pre-apocalypse traffic laws like that, and most of them didn’t exist altogether. Re-igniting the fight against speeding was a strange step for the city to take, since up until that point the elected officials mostly left the public to their own devices.

I nearly forgot to grab the leather file case from my passenger seat before I went inside the building. Both elevators had been out-of-order for days, so I was forced to take seven flights of stairs to my floor instead of riding up with ease. On my way to the staircase, I nodded to the young man who stood behind the counter in the lobby for what seemed like twenty hours out of the day. Whenever I was on the first floor, I ran into him somehow. His name was John – I knew that much – but I didn’t know anything else about him. My best guess is that he was related to the owners of the Hyatt. He looked a bit like the general manager, so perhaps it was his son or nephew.

My room was directly next to the staircase, so I didn’t have to walk far after getting to my floor. With a quick jingle of my keys, I was back home. It was totally dark in my apartment, but it’s not like I could just switch on a light. Electricity was expensive in Sacramento, so I chose to go without. To my surprise, I managed quite well without it. I charged my cell phone at work, and the TV channels were mostly just news stations broadcasting out of Redding and Monterrey, all of which basically consisted of anti-Oregon propaganda and nothing else useful. Sacramento’s leadership had a monopoly on printed information within the city in the form of the Sacramento Tribune, the only operating newspaper in the region. I usually grabbed it every morning before work.

Running water, in contrast to power, was a necessity. I splashed some water on my face to wash away the grease and sweat of the day before sitting down at my desk to open the files I had been graciously handed at the bar. I flipped on the battery-operated reading lamp I had and unzipped the leather case. The first thing I pulled out was a neatly-folded section of the Sacramento Tribune. It was the obituaries, and one of the announcements had been circled in pen. No picture was present with the death notice.

“Carl Cole was found dead yesterday in his home at the age of 42. The police department has ruled his death a homicide, and they are launching an investigation.
Mr. Cole is survived by his wife Anne Cole, his son George, and two grandchildren. He was born on July 13th, 1983 in Georgia. According to his family, he was protective and supportive of them and inspired them to assist in the Reclamation of Sacramento.
Cremation has been chosen and a memorial service will be held at a later date, pending the investigation into his passing.”

Judging from the rest of the paperwork in the file case and the age of the newspaper clipping, Mr. Cole’s death had occurred the week before. Another section of the department had been handling the case, but for some reason it had been transferred to me. Usually I wasn’t assigned more than one murder at a time, so I guessed it had to be an unusual circumstance. I adjusted my lamp so I could see better and struggled to control my thoughts long enough to focus on the papers in front of me.

The crime scene had been examined thoroughly by the Sacramento Police Department, and the file case included high-quality pictures of the body and the building it had been found in. Mr. Cole had been found lying back-first on the floor of his living room. Deep defensive wounds on his hands pointed to a vain struggle to protect himself; his right thumb was nearly severed at the base of his hand, and most of his fingers had slash wounds. Grabbing a moving blade is a desperate move, and from looking the rest of his injuries, I could tell his desperation was warranted, for the murder was exceptionally brutal. The center of Mr. Cole’s chest was stained with dark red blood, indicating he had been dead for hours before anybody found him; the shaggy carpet beneath his body also hosted its fair share of blood.
Another picture showed the extent of his injuries. With his shirt lifted up, it was clear that only a single stab had been needed to end the poor man’s life – straight in through the middle of the chest just above the stomach and out the back. A coroner’s report that had been included in the file case told me that his spine suffered paralytic severing, meaning the victim bled out on the floor, unable to call for help or move to stop his bleeding. All in all, it was a terrible way to go.

One of the more peculiar injuries Mr. Cole suffered was a cut on his upper left thigh. His pants had been sliced open, presumably by the same blade that injured his hands and torso. According to the coroner, it had been done just after his death, which raised several red flags. The nature of the injury lit up a little bulb in my brain, and the bulb was bright enough for me to set aside Mr. Cole’s reports and look at my other murder case, a man by the name of Corey Hale. Mr. Hale was a retired firefighter working as a janitor at the Sacramento Convention Center, which was located only a few blocks from the Hyatt. One of Mr. Hale’s fellow janitors, after getting worried about not seeing him for several work days, visited his home on the north side of the city and found him dead. He had been lying on his couch for three days. Since I had been on the case from the beginning, I was able to visit the crime scene directly. The body was draped over the back of the couch, with the face flat on the couch cushions and the feet slightly off the floor. The back of the neck had been hit by a bladed instrument, exposing the bone of Mr. Hale’s spine. Much of the blood from the wound had dried while seeping down his body. The front of his throat was also cut open by a sideways slashing motion, possibly from behind, and the wound only added to the blood that soaked the couch and floor of the living room. There were several bloody footprints on the scene, which were extremely important to use in terms of identifying a suspect.

The important thing about Mr. Hale’s case was a thigh injury – it was identical to Mr. Cole’s. Judging from the pictures of Mr. Cole’s body and what I saw at Mr. Hale’s house, the wounds were roughly the same depth, and they were in the same location. Most importantly, the coroner reports stated that both wounds were inflicted after death. After realizing the similarity in the wounds, I had to lean back and rub my eyes. Nobody just cut a body like that. It was too specific to be accidental. For it to happen twice in the same city within the same month was very, very bad. It meant we were dealing with somebody who went out and killed for a reason – somebody who liked killing and wanted to kill. It made sense to me, then, why the case had been handed to me. My boss knew about my case, and he knew most of the details. Something like the thigh injury was an oddity, and it was easily identifiable. He must have seen Mr. Cole's case at some point and made the same connection I did.

I knew it was only a matter of time before Sacramento had to deal with its first serial killer case, especially since the apocalypse was sure to have created many new candidates between the zombies and the ASF. With several glasses of Monday in my system, however, was impossible to make sense of anything past that. I turned off my lamp and left the files scattered on my desk, and I went to bed that night hoping Tuesday would bring clarity, but I knew from experience that it would only bring more haze.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Wed Feb 17, 2016 11:55 pm

*old deleted Bert part*
Last edited by coinsruledude on Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Mon Feb 22, 2016 11:20 pm

Omar: 3

[Tuesday, September 16th, 2025 – 7:19 AM]

Parking was scarce at the police station, since basically everybody who worked there needed at least one car. A lot of them had two – one personal vehicle and one paid for by the city for the express purpose of work. I had to park a block away and walk, but I didn’t mind much. Our department was based out of a refurbished three-story apartment building in the middle of the city block. All three floors were operated by the department and a lot of interior walls and utilities had been knocked down to replace the individual apartments with offices, cubical space, and whatever else we needed to function. My office was streetside on the third floor, which gave me a decent view of absolutely nothing since the other side of the street was filled with buildings taller than ours. I was greeted at the front door by our bald security guard Ed, who watched over the front doors with an M-16 in hand. His job wasn’t that critical most of the time, but if there was a crisis of some sort nearby, he was there to buy just enough time for the rest of the force to rally and quell whatever was happening. In that way his life was pretty much forfeit, but he didn’t seem to care. He must’ve been paid well, since he was in the same place for almost twelve hours a day with only a folding chair and bagged lunch to keep him company.

The chief’s office was on the second floor. His name was Peter Holt, but there were a thousand different nicknames for him – Pete, Holt, Bossman, Chief, and whatever else. I just called him by his first name because we had been working together long enough for me to do so without insulting his position. He had two tours in Iraq under his belt before the apocalypse, but he got involved in the police department during the re-founding of Sacramento. I didn’t know his detailed backstory or anything about his travels throughout the first decade or so of the apocalypse, but then again, nobody knew that about anybody. We all filtered into the West Coast at some point, and the fact that we were now Eurekan was sufficient enough for the population to be happy. Peter was rotund with a thin brown neckbeard and short hair to match. He always wore dress shirts that were stretched tightly over his torso, and his desk was littered with random odds and ends ranging from pictures of his two kids to old fast food wrappers. When I walked up to the door of his office, unconsciously reading the black letters that spelled out his name and rank, the chief opened the door and ushered one of the beat cops out of his office. He smiled warmly and nodded to me as I walked in the room with him.

“Dressed dapper as always, Mr. Sweeney.” he commented. I was wearing my favorite brown suit, which cost me a small fortune even with post-apocalypse inflation accounted for, and a trilby that was a shade darker than the suit itself. Professionalism was paramount to me when I was in the office, and it made me feel a few inches taller to dress as such.
“I hope you don’t plan on making me go snooping around today. I’ll have to go home and change otherwise.” I replied. We both sat down.
“No, not today. Get here alright?”
“Why wouldn’t I?”
“Didn’t get a speeding ticket or anything?”
“Not since the other day.”
“It’s all a joke. Some loony is going to freak out and kill one of us because of it, mark my words.” Peter said, in a tone that was half humorous and half furious. He didn’t like the new, or technically resurrected, speed limits either.
“Foster said the same thing.”
“For him it’s needed, but only for him. He drives on the damn sidewalk half the time,” Peter breathed, settling further into his chair. During the pause in conversation, I opened by black briefcase and slapped the leather file case that had been handed to me the night before on the chief’s desk.
“Did you go through that at all?” he asked.
“I skimmed through it last night.”
“Ah, so you forgot it all, didn’t you?” he chided, referring to the fact that we had gone out for our weekly Monday cleanse.
“I didn’t get that drunk…I think I know why you had it passed on to me.”
“You saw it too? The connection to your current case, I mean.”
“Two middle-aged men were slaughtered in their own homes in the same city with the same injuries, both the fatal and the superficial. Coincidence?”
“I was chatting with Adrian and I got a little look at the investigation into the death of...ah, the other man. What was his name...” As he struggled to remember Carl Cole’s name, Peter opened up the file case and dug around until he found the crime scene photos.
“Carl Cole.”
“Exactly right. I knew the details about your case, the janitor…Corey Hale, I think it was–”
“It was.”
“–And I remembered this.” Peter said, pointing at an image of the slash on Cole’s thigh. Although individually insignificant, the fact that the wound was found on two different people who had been killed one after the other was an alarm bell for a serial killer marking his victims.
“Unfortunately we won’t know until a third murder.” I stated.
“Keep working these two cases as normal until then,” Peter said, putting the contents of the file case back inside and passing it to me. “All the progress that’s been made on Mr. Cole’s case is in your hands right now, so go ahead and proceed with it from there. Okay?”
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Sun Mar 27, 2016 3:21 am

*old deleted Bert part*
Last edited by coinsruledude on Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Tue May 17, 2016 2:03 am

*old deleted Bert part*
Last edited by coinsruledude on Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Sat Jun 04, 2016 1:03 am

Marcus: 7

[Tuesday, September 18th, 2012 – 6:33 PM]

Marcus, Clyde, and J.J. returned to the prison later in the evening after gathering what they could from Marcus’s house and loading it in their stolen truck. There was a small amount of food and water to take, along with the shotgun and its ammunition. They also grabbed the contents of Marcus’s dresser, since clean clothes could be used to bribe inmates. Unsurprisingly the road conditions were no better on the return trip, costing them time, but luckily time wasn’t of the essence anymore. Wal-Mart had delivered and the men had accomplished what they set out to do that day.

After brutally slaying his wife, Marcus remained silent to gather his thoughts and come down from his adrenaline rush. He wasn’t questioning what he did or expressing remorse, not in the slightest, but instead his mind was racing with the infinite possible futures he had to look forward to. It was all but confirmed to them that the rioters were zombies, or at least zombie-like, so he didn’t expect the authorities to retake the prison. Instead of being destroyed under siege by federal agents, the prison would be under siege by the undead, which was honestly more terrifying. It was stocked with enough supplies to last for several weeks, even with the sizable remaining inmate population taken into account. He thought about gathering some of his closer associates and fleeing with the trucks, leaving the prison and the prisoners to their own devices, but he dismissed the idea. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, he needed security for himself and his supplies, and a correctional facility like Western Virginia Regional had enough muscle within its walls to maintain security for a long time, given enough compensation for the inmates was provided and the organization was efficient.

He thought back to what he had told Clyde in the protected custody wing: power mattered, control mattered, et cetera. Marcus didn’t believe all of it at first. He was talking like that to stroke Clyde’s ego, not out of his personal beliefs. After killing his wife, however, he understood exactly what drove Clyde to fight for him. The man got a suit of armor out of the deal, something that made him basically invincible to the rest of the prisoners and their makeshift clubs. He understood why J.J. had fired his stolen shotgun at the cafeteria ceiling. It was effective. Keylon backed down from the fight immediately.

When they got back to the prison, the three inmates found the two Wal-Mart trucks parked in front of the facility. Their parking jobs were shoddy, but none of the prisoners knew how to drive such a large vehicle, so all that mattered was that the trucks returned safely. Malcolm and Howard were standing guard over the cargo while Keylon’s crew and Blaine were nowhere to be found. Marcus parked the pickup truck near the rear of the first trailer and the three men exited the vehicle.
“Did you get back okay?” Clyde inquired.
“For the most part, yeah,” Malcolm replied, scratching his scalp. “There was a problem with Blaine along the way.”
“What happened?”
“He passed out once and then woke up a couple minutes later. He’s looking way worse now than before,” Howard explained. “I’ll bet anything he’s infected, just like we talked about in the house. Keylon’s watching over him in his cell so he doesn’t turn and bite anyone.”
“He’s gotta be put down. Even if he isn’t infected, he’s sick and he could spread it around to the rest of us. There’s no medical staff working here anymore.” Marcus said adamantly.
“I agree.” Clyde said, looking at Marcus and nodding.
“Where does that leave us?” Howard asked, motioning to himself and Malcolm.
“You’re both still part of this. You helped us get these trucks, so you have a say in how things go around here. Blaine or no Blaine, you’re in with us now, alright?” Marcus said, extending his hand to the men. After a brief moment of hesitation, Howard shook his hand, followed immediately by Malcolm.
“What about Keylon?” J.J. inquired. Keylon’s group posed a significant threat despite their small population of seven inmates. They were all violent offenders who were part of a local crime organization known as the Red Cosh, and they were liable to start riots and kill other inmates without provocation.

“If we don’t keep Keylon happy, they’ll start some **** here,” Clyde said. “We’ll distribute the power around to keep him and his gangbangers in line – same goes for you and yours, J.J., and we can’t forget the Ojos. It’s common sense. Nobody gets too much power.”
“Exactly. We pull the strings, not anybody else.” Marcus said, smiling. The Ojos were a Hispanic drug smuggling and human trafficking organization that was centered in the Carolinas and the Virginias, but they were relatively non-confrontational. They usually kept to themselves when the prison was operating normally, but there were twenty of them in Western Virginia Regional alone, so they had the numbers to affect riots and the like. In Marcus’s mind, the factions likely wouldn’t be a problem as long as the leaders of the prison – himself and his new allies – kept the leaders of the factions happy.

Inside Western Virginia Regional, the inmates had spread throughout the prison. The cafeteria emptied quickly once all of the available food was picked clean from the serving tables, and inmates either returned to their cells to rest or went to various recreational facilities in the prison. J.J. went to find the rest of his white supremacist friends while the rest of Marcus’s crew went check on the situation regarding Blaine. Keylon and another Red Cosh trooper were standing outside the cell, which had been tied shut as securely as possible with bed sheets. Blaine’s pale form was lying on his cot surrounded by a moist ring made of his sweat. His chest wasn’t moving noticeably, but he appeared to still be alive.
“What’re we doin’ ‘bout him?” Keylon asked immediately.
“We’re not risking anything with him. He’s getting put down at some point.” Marcus replied.
“We’ll wait to see if he turns. If he does, then we know how people turn into zombies.”
“Well, I got **** to do, so ya’ll can take over.” Keylon said, slapping his ally on the shoulder. The pair left the cell, presumably to go meet up with the rest of their gang.
“Malcolm, Howard, can you watch him? Keep him in his cell no matter what.” Clyde asked.
“Yeah, he’s our friend but we won’t let him hurt anyone. I’ll let you know if anything changes.” Malcolm said.

Marcus and Clyde returned to the armory once they were alone, locking themselves inside so they could discuss more about the prison.
“Where do we go from here?” Marcus asked.
“What, you’re asking me? You’re the one with the big plan to take over, right?” Clyde asked mockingly, taking off his riot helmet for the time being.
“I don’t know where to go from here, which is why I’m asking. You’ve had more experience dealing with prisoners from a position of power, so what the **** do we do?”
“We unload those trucks, first of all,” Clyde said. “Then we go get the Ojos on our good side – they can unload the trucks and guard the bulk of the food and water supplies. They won’t object, since they’ll be getting the chance to nick **** from the pallets. We look the other way, and they remain loyal guards. We’ll do the same with Red Cosh. If we let them take the Nazis out, then they’ll take out anyone we ask.”
“So you think we should instigate a riot to kill off J.J. and his people? Don’t we want to avoid that?”
“It’ll happen sooner or later, you dunce. What else would you expect? J.J. is going to bait and bait until he gets attacked, and then he’ll use the guns you’re giving him to kill them all – not just Red Cosh, but all of the blacks left here. This prison was half black, Marcus, and we can’t have people stirring racial **** at a time like this. Don’t you agree, or did he convince you to join the Brotherhood too?”
“I can talk to J.J. He trusts me, and I bet I can get him to give up his **** rivalry for the sake of not dying to zombies later down the line.”
“You do that. I’ll be waiting in the wings with Keylon for when you fail. J.J. isn’t the kind of person to change his mind. You’re his roommate, so you should know. Either way, we also need to get some inmates organized, goddamnit. This place doesn’t have unlimited food and water and bullets. If I go get the Ojos on our side, can you start gathering people for a looting schedule?”
“I’ll try.”
“Alright. We can get this place up and running fast if we keep ourselves focused. People need to eat, and people need to bathe, and if we wait too long, the prison will start to bleed prisoners as they flee, and we won’t have enough men to defend this place from a horde even a fifth the size of the one we saw earlier.”
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Sun Jun 05, 2016 11:32 pm

*old deleted Bert part*
Last edited by coinsruledude on Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

Posts: 14906
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2010 7:36 pm
Location: Restricted

Re: If I Stand, We Fall (IC)

Postby coinsruledude » Mon Jun 06, 2016 11:37 pm

Oliver: 11

[Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012 – 4:03 PM]

Eventually Alan and I had to stop because we started to run low on gas. We made it all the way to Oxford, a small village in central New York that seemed to be deserted for the most part. As we were coasting on fumes down Wackford Road, we decided to stop at a place called Menard’s Garage. The poor mechanic had obviously tried to board up his building, but several bodies near the front door and a small congregation of zombies outside in the street signaled to me that he hadn’t been very successful. From the sunroof, I used by Beretta to pick off the zombies before exiting the car and approaching the garage.
“Let’s see if this place can help us out a bit. We’re driving on fumes right now.” I said. Alan and I approached the garage’s front door with our pistols drawn, although I didn’t expect him to use his; he hadn’t since I found him in Philadelphia. After stepping over the first of the bodies, I could easily see inside the building through the multiple glass windows. Two zombies were standing in the store, clawing at us from their trapped position.
“Alright, I’m going to kick in the door to let them out. Stand back.”
“Go ahead.” Alan replied, taking several steps back. I kicked on the flimsy door until it broke inward on its hinges, allowing me to swing it inward and allowing the zombies to come outside. They came one at a time, so it was easy to beat them down with my bat.

“Can you go check around the back of the store?” I asked. “There might be a car parked back there or some ****. I’ll check inside.” Alan disappeared around the corner as I cautiously stepped inside the store. Immediately I was overcome by the smell of rotting death, and I could barely continue at first because I felt like I was about to vomit. Having multiple zombies trapped in a small room for who knows how long created a horrible odor. I left the front door propped open on one of the zombies I had just killed so the smell could seep out.

Besides some oil and windshield wiper fluid I grabbed from a shelf on my way out, the interior was absolutely wrecked. All of the tools we could have easily grabbed for trade or car maintenance were missing. Even some of the heavier machinery was gone, evidenced by marks on the floor and random cables and pipes sticking out of the floor and the walls. I met up with Alan by our SUV. He hadn’t found anything of value either, so we immediately got back in our car and drove north. A half mile from the garage, we were forced to drive between a small patch of trees that lined the ditches on either side of the road, which opened up into some fields on the other side. Right at the end of the trees, two objects suddenly slid into the roadway. From what I could see before our car veered off to the side, the objects looked like lassos made of thin wire. I heard the SUV’s tires pop as Alan drove over them, unable to avoid the collision, and all of a sudden we bumped over the ditch and ran head-on into a guard rail on the left side of the road.

The impact threw me for a loop, but before I could gather myself, there were guns smashing the side windows and hands unlocking the doors to pull me and Alan out of the car. We were thrown face-down in the middle of the street and held down by boots pushed in the smalls of our backs. With my head pressed to the pavement, I watched as AJ jumped out of the car and began barking at our attackers, jumping to and fro to avoid getting grabbed by them. Eventually they got a grip on his collar and dragged him out of my view, but he continued to bark.
“Where are your supplies? Are you two alone?” a male voice demanded. I could hear more people shuffling around behind us by our car.
“It’s just us two! We’re not trying to hurt anyone!” Alan replied loudly. There was a small shed not far from where our car crashed, and two sedans pulled out from behind it after we were subdued. They pulled up next to our crashed car and began searching through the wreckage for our supplies, grabbing our backpacks and digging through the contents.
“Three bags? Is this all? Where’s the rest of your supplies?” the same voice asked angrily.
“That’s all we have, I swear!” Alan answered.
“Why are you people robbing us?” I demanded. Nobody answered me, but they took their feet off our backs.
“Put your hands on your head and get on your knees!” another voice ordered. We didn’t have a choice but to comply, since there were multiple pistols pointed at us. When I finally got a good look at the bandits, they looked like ordinary people. They were wearing normal civilian clothes, not armor or riot gear, and their weapons were common carrying pistols, not machine guns or tactical shotguns. There were three men and three women. They tossed all three of our bags into their sedans, which I could see were packed with cases of water and cardboard boxes. I started to panic inwardly at that point. They were talking literally everything we had.

“Put your guns on the ground in front of you, right now!” one of the men demanded. He was the one who initially asked if we were traveling alone. He had an unkempt beard and dirty hair, and he was wearing a white T-shirt and jeans. All in all he looked like a regular person, someone you wouldn’t look twice at if he was walking down the street. He was holding a pistol up at me, so I listened to him and took my gun out of its holster, placing it on the ground in front of me. Alan didn’t move, even though I knew his Ruger SR22 was shoved in his waistband, but he didn’t make a move to put it on the ground. Once I let go of my gun and put my hand back on my head, the man ordered us to scoot back so he could retrieve it. The last thing I wanted to do was give up my gun, not just because it was a weapon but also because I had spent years shooting it, but there wasn’t much of an option with guns pointed at me.

The people made a move to leave, but Alan spoke up.
“You can’t just leave us with nothing!” he said.
“We have to! It’s nothing personal.” one of the women said snappily.
“So you’re going to steal a vet’s **** leg, then? Huh? What good is that to you anyway?” I asked angrily. I was wearing my running prosthetic, so it was clear what I was talking about, and I continued to look at the people during the awkward silence that followed. Eventually one of the men took my other prosthetic from the bag and placed it on the ground next to me.
“What about our medicine?” Alan asked.
“We need that more than you.”
“Do you have diabetes?” I asked. The man who took my gun took our medicine bag from the back of the sedan they had put it in.
“Which of these are for your diabetes?” he asked Alan. When Alan described the label, the man grabbed two of the pill bottles and threw them to him before putting the bag back. Right before they left, the people released AJ. They were keeping him in the back their car and they made me grab his collar before they jumped in and sped north, leaving us speechless. Their robbery only took a few minutes at most, from destroying our car to leaving us in the middle of the road. Alan and I didn’t say anything to each other for a few minutes. He went back to the SUV to see what, if anything, was left, and I went back to see how they crashed our car. It turns out they were using remote spike strips, likely stolen from the police somewhere. Two thin cases held the coiled spikes, which unwound when they pressed a button on a control panel. I assumed the bandits would come back for their tools later, so I rolled one of them back into its case and chucked it as far as I could into the trees. I did the same thing with the other set. AJ tramped into the bushes after I did so, thinking I was throwing a toy, but he emerged after a few seconds wagging his tail like nothing had happened.

“I need to train you to bite people.” I grumbled.
“The SUV won’t start.” Alan said to me. He had retrieved his pills, putting them in his pocket, and my leg, which he held out for me to take.
“No **** it won’t start. Do you still have your gun?”
“Yeah, I don’t think they knew I had one.”
“Give it to me.”
“Because you’re a terrible shot, that’s why. We have, what, ten bullets now? One .22 pistol, two bottles of fat pills, my fake leg, and a totaled car.”
“I guess we have to walk.”
“No **** we have to walk! What else is there to do?”
“There’s no point in being mad. Those people are long gone…”
“That’s why I’m **** mad! They’re long gone with all of my ****! My clothes, my bags, my food from my apartment, my **** gun and all my ammo. All they took from you were your **** pills, which, newsflash, I got for you!” I yelled. I couldn’t contain my anger after being robbed blind. We were just beginning to have some luck after finding the SUV, but it was crashed on the side of the road thanks to some random fucks who apparently made a living ambushing people like us – people with nowhere to go. I felt stupid just giving up everything like that, and I let out my frustration by screaming at Alan, throwing in as many insults and cuss words as I could to the sky. I was red in the face and we had been walking north for a few minutes by the time I was done with my tantrum.
"You can only talk rubbish if you're aware of knowledge." ~Karl Pilkington
"**** it, it's late. Change it later." ~Me and Teddy

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