Chapter One, Slow and Painful

Zombie or Post Apocalyptic themed fiction/stories.

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Chapter One, Slow and Painful

Post by Beacons » Sat Nov 25, 2017 8:47 am

Hi, new at this, Just wanted to opinion of others on a novel I started writing. I haven't gotten very far but I just want to know what people think anyway. Here's the start. Basically I mostly want to know if it seams believable, and if you can connect with the main character. :crazy:

Chapter One
Slow and Painful

The electric door bell sang it's usual two tone melody, reminding Josh that another costumer had walked in the door. Not that he needed it, it was a small over-the-counter electronics repair shop and Josh had a clear view of the front door at all times, but he had heard customers felt more welcomed to the familiar melody. He stood up a bit sharper as the customer entered, his face naturally looked tired so he put some effort in to smile and hide those features of his face. The customer smiled back and waked up to the counter. "Welcome to DigiPoint, how can I help you?". "I'm looking for a cable to connect my phone to the tv" the customer said and held out a thin black brick which Josh instantly recognized as a OnePlus 5. "Absolutely, am I wrong in assuming that your TV has a HDMI port?" He gestured towards one of the cables hanging off the wall behind him. "Yes, that's what I'm looking for" the customer happily replied. "I'll just take a quick tour around the back and get you one" Josh said as he disappeared into the neatly organized storage room behind the counter. He looked through the adapter cables and grabbed the one he knew was compatible with the customers phone, then headed back out. "Here you go, that will be 15 dollars 99 cents". Josh did his usual little finger dance on the counter monitor, the customer pushed his card into the reader and made his well practiced finger dance too and the transaction was complete. "Here's your cable and the receipt is in the bag, have a nice evening" he said as he handed over the bag to the customer who nodded politely, said his thanks and was quickly out the door. Josh looked around the store, it was almost empty apart from a couple discussing something in front of one of the flat-screens hanging on the walls. He turned to one of his colleges by the counter next to his. "Mike, we close in 10, can you try not to scare off the last customers while I make some room for tomorrows shipment?". "Sure thing" Mike responded and glanced at the couple. Josh headed back into the neatly organized room and walked over to the area where they usually drop off the boxes of new goods for unpacking. It was the only messy place in the storage room with empty cardboard boxed blocking the path. He started to fold them up while thinking about his job. He didn't often reflect upon where his salary came from. He knew he could probably have done better but he was content. Considering the circumstances of how he got here he was actually very happy co-managing a small electronics store. He had a promising career ahead of him at the age of 20, studying at New York University with better than average grades. Then a stupid mistake followed by the worst of luck had turned his life completely upside down. At the age of 20 he became a father. This did not ruin his life though, quite the opposite, this gave it more meaning than ever before and his girlfriend who was a few years older refused to let a child stop either one of them from getting a degree, even if it would make that path longer. Josh parent's helped out a lot too. At age 21 everything changed as he became a grieving father. He could no longer support both a child and his studies, neither financially nor emotionally. His girlfriend had died in a car accident while on the way to visit her parents who did not yet know about her newborn son. They were old-fashioned and not fond of the idea of their daughter sleeping with men before marriage. Josh had tried to convince her several times to tell them, that there was no use in lying. She would always respond with "You don't know my parents" which quickly put an end to that discussion. This was the reason she was heading down to see them alone, it was probably the reason for their son to still be alive too. Soon after, through one of his fathers friends, he landed a job here at DigiPoint, probably out of pity but he was more than qualified and he wasn't going to ride on a wave of pity, he was going to pull his weight and then some. Not long after he had managed to climb the chain and somehow ended up as co-manager. So yes, he was happy to be working here. Maybe one day he would finish his studies, but right now he was getting by fine and every attempt at thinking about getting back to his studies ripped up all the old scars which he had hid so well. The clock was almost nine as he was done stashing away the folded up cardboard boxes, he took a quick look around the storage room to make sure nothing was out of place before walking back out to Mike. "Sorry Josh" Mike said as he got back. Josh looked confused "Why?". "I think I scared the customers away" Mike said sweeping his hand across the store. "Ha. Then you get to close the store." Josh threw the keys at Mike, intending for him to catch them but instead they hit the counter, slid and stopped perfectly in front of Mike. "Oh god, anything but that." Mike joked and grabbed the keys. "See you tomorrow Mike." Josh called out as he walked out the door into the roaring sound that was New York city.

After a subway ride filled with music from his earbuds and a short walk from Street Station he finally arrived at what he currently called home, 1672 Third Avenue. It was a cute little five story building, dwarfed by the 45 story tower right next to making it look tiny. He and his son was living on a flat at the forth floor, nothing fancy, two bedrooms plus a kitchen and bathroom but enough space for them to live on. Josh had nothing to complain about except for the rather thin walls, but even that didn't bother him too much. One of the upsides of tragedies he told himself, you weren't bothered much by the details of life. He got in the small elevator and headed up, fiddling with the keys in his pocket. He inserted the keys into the door and opened it, shortly followed by a loud "Daddy!". Adam came running up to him jumping. "Oufh." He exclaimed as Adam ran into him with his arms out. "Isn't it a bit late for you to be jumping around this much" he said as he hugged him. "No, I mean yeah, I mean, look at what I made!" he chattered and ran off into his room to get something. Natasha, the nanny who had helped him raise Adam came out from the kitchen where she often sat watching TV or staring at her phone while Adam was in his room playing. "He's been wanting to show you this thing the whole evening, talking non stop about it during dinner" She smiled at him as he came running back out from his room with a laptop in his hands. "Look dad, I made a movie!" He turned the laptop around to reveal a white screen with two stick figures on it. Then the stick figures started to fight, at least that's what he thought they were doing as they were whimsy flying through the air, seemingly defying every physical law in existence and shooting sparkling colors out of their hands. "Wow, that's awesome! Did Natasha help you with it?" "No, I did it myself" Adam proudly proclaimed. "Wow, maybe if you continue to work hard you could be a director!" Josh smiled at him and handed back the laptop. He had once heard that you should give credit for working hard, and not for being good at something and it had stuck with him. "I don't want to be a director" Adam said firmly. "Well, what do you want to be then?" "Hmm... I don't know, what did you want to be?" Josh thought about it and couldn't remember every wanting to be something in particular. "I didn't know either" he chuckled. Natasha signaled for his attention. "I'm gonna have to go now. I'll see you again on Thursday." "Oh, thank you for today, see you then" Josh said as she walked out the door. "Can I stay up longer tonight? I need to make my film longer!" Adam pleaded. "We both have to go up early tomorrow so what you need is sleep, and daddy has to eat before he too must sleep" Josh said, making it sound almost like telling a fairy tale. "Okay" Adam said, disappointed. "You can continue tomorrow, I'll pick you up from school and maybe you can show me how you made it?" "Okay!" Adam exclaimed happily.

After putting Adam to sleep and heating some microwave food Josh sat down in the kitchen and looked at his phone. He put in the earbuds again and turned on the news while eating the steaming hot microwaved goop he called food. "What is believed to be three separate robberies gone wrong has ended in the loss of four lives today. At around 7 Pm all of the robbery attempts ended in tragedy as the victims of the robbery lunged for their perpetrator and bit them in the neck. Police say the perpetrators were known previously by the police and that all evidence points towards a robbery attempt, they can however not explain the strange behaviour of the victims or how three separate instances can look so eerily similar. Mark Evans survived without injury and this is what he had to say about the incident: 'I didn't mean to kill him, he pointed a gun in my face and I just panicked, lost control. Next thing I know I'm standing over him while he is bleeding out on the ground in front of me.' He is now in police custody awaiting trial. The One of the perpetrators is currently being treated at Bellevue Hospital in critical condition, the identity of the man is still unknown." Josh squinted at the phone trying to make sense of what he had just seen, disgusted by the needless loss of life over money, wishing he hadn't turned on the news. He couldn't remember the last time he'd seen a happy story on the news. He finished his late dinner while scrolling through Facebook, a lot of people were talking about the incident on the news, some claiming it was the rise of another crime wave related to drugs, some outrage that Mark Evans had to even face trial when
he was clearly defending himself. One comment claiming it was a zombie attack caught his eye, mostly because of the long chain of comments bellow it either stating it was ridiculous or actually agreeing with the guy. Josh gave up on the whole thing, cleaned his plate, checked on Adam one last time and went for the bed in his room.

The next morning was uneventfully, nothing but the usual morning routine. He dropped off Adam at the Dalton School just two blocks away. Adam was probably old enough to walk there by himself but Josh followed him anyway, it wasn't a big detour from heading directly to 86 street station and it gave him some time with his son which was never a bad thing. Another packed subway ride full of people staring into their phones then he arrived at work. Mike had already opened up and was standing behind his counter. "Hey, you heard about the zombie attacks last night?" Mike joked. "You mean the robbery attempts?" Josh responded trying to act serious about it. "No man, last night there were five more attacks just like those robberies. Apparently the CDC is investigating, they think it's some new drug that's causing people to lash out in violent bursts". Josh just stared at him in confusion. "Don't look so worried, it's just a bunch of desperate junkies." Mike calmed him, sensing that Josh was worried it wasn't just a drug. Josh remembered there were similar attacks back in 2012 related to bath salts, but he didn't remember there being this many. Then again, New York City is a large city, with a population of eight and a half million, ten cases of bath salts were hardly very many. After all, if it had been an infection it would have spread fast he reasoned. A new drug causing people to be violent seamed much more reasonable than some movie style infection going rampant, and it made more sense for only very few people to lash out. Then again he remembered Mark Evans from the news report, he didn't look like a junkie. He corrected himself, what did he mean by 'look like a junkie'? He'd known several people who were as far away from the stereotypical junkie as one can be, people who did drugs and still managed to hold a high paying job. Despite his rational reasoning his mind went to the safety of Adam. "Sorry for getting you in a bad mood this early" Mike said "I'll give you something to cheer you up, we had an early customer who came by with this". He pointed to a large old desktop computer with a buckled case on the counter in front of him. "He said he dropped it and it won't turn on". "I'll give it a try, Cindy should get here any minute so she can manage the other counter. Tell me when the delivery arrives, would you?" Josh said and picked up what was once a very expensive collectors item of a computer, trying to push down the irrational fear that was brewing in his chest. Mike nodded as Josh walked back into the storage room and continued towards a large desk in the corner of the room full of racks with acrylic boxes with spare parts and tools. He began unscrewing the case around the computer to investigate the damage inside. He could hear Cindy enter the front door with her usual happy morning greeting as he continued to fiddle with the broken piece of electronics in front of him.

The delivery didn't arrive until just before lunchtime. There had been unusually few customers today so Mike hauled in the package alone while Josh continued to struggle with the old computer. He had been able to bend the all metal case back into shape, thus saving the customer a lot of money he guessed, since changing the case from it's original would drastically lower the price of such a collectors item. He looked up at Mike who was unpacking at the other end of the room. "Hey Mike, why don't you and Cindy take a lunch break, I'll manage the counters for a while, not getting anywhere with this piece of junk" Josh said and started to walk back out into the store. He had only been by the counter for ten minutes or so when both Mike and Cindy came rushing out from the lunchroom behind him. "Josh, it's not a drug, it's happening everywhere!" Mike exclaimed with panic in his eyes, shoving a phone in his face with a news reporter on it. Josh didn't understand what he was talking about at first, then it hit him, and it hit him hard. "What do you mean it's not a drug?" He stupidly asked, well aware of the answer to his question. "Look, the same thing is happening everywhere". Josh looked at the phone and listened to the broadcast. "Early this morning reports from all over the country of sudden unmotivated attacks

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Re: Chapter One, Slow and Painful

Post by DAVE KI » Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:09 pm

Yeah I like it. Off to a good start, hope to see much more.
"We'll Fight Them, Sir!, Until Hell Freezes Over, And Then We'll Fight Them On The Ice! Sir!

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Re: Chapter One, Slow and Painful

Post by Poppyclips » Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:35 am

Gripping! Please continue :awesome:

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