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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Thu Sep 01, 2011 11:06 pm 
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Must Have MOAR!!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 5:03 am 
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[How am I doing guys? Leave me some feedback, some constructive criticism or something, let me know how you folks like it! I've come to like this story, and am having lots of fun writing it, but I need you folks to tell me how it's turning out!]

CHAPTER 10

The shots fired in the distance quickly became more frequent. The wall was under siege by the time the time the group reached the industrial district, but Parker had to put that out of his mind if he was going to concentrate. Reuben had been filling him in on the details of what happened between the ambush on the highway and their regroup after the explosion, but Parker found it difficult to stay focused.

“Once we got separated,” Reuben explained, “the Scouts and I agreed that it was more important to get to Shepherdsville than to pursue the typical Scout-Runner rivalry, so the three of us grouped up and hauled here. When we arrived, we saw another Runner opening the outer portcullis, with the bodies of the gatehouse guards behind him. We tried to catch him, but he got away.”

“Do you know what he was doing?” inquired Parker.

“I know exactly what he was doing,” Reuben replied. “He was going to leave the doors open and hope that the gunfire from the assault on the medical facility would draw in the undead.”

Parker looked to Sal, who looked just as vexed. “And when you interrupted him, he decided to blow a hole in the wall instead. I get it. But why?”

“Because they were losing the fight here. They needed to get the militia away from the medical facility so they could invade.”

“Woah woah woah,” Parker said, grabbing Reuben’s arm. “What the hell do you mean ‘they’? What is it, an army?”

“Almost. A large group of Runners. The same ones that have been attacking you, Parker. They’re all Runners.”

All Runners. They weren’t disguised as Runners in Constitution like Parker had suspected, nor were they faking their credentials-- they truly were Runners. “But why? Runners aren’t a private army. What the hell are they doing?”

“I can’t tell you that just yet, Parker. I still need you to trust me. Once you turn in that box, everything-- and I mean everything-- will be laid out for you.”

“When did you become the narrator?” Parker demanded. “How the hell do you know so much?”

“Because the same exact thing happened in E-Town.”

Parker stopped in his tracks. “What? You’re saying Elizabethtown fell because someone blew open the walls? That it was all intentional?”

“Same exact thing. The Runners wanted the med facility shut down and destroyed. When the militia proved to be too strong, they set off explosives throughout the city. The gates were standing wide open-- they didn’t need to blow open the walls. By the time the militia realized the undead had entered the city, there weren’t enough of them left to save E-Town. The Runners destroyed the facility and scattered, and over the course of a few weeks, the city fell. That’s what they want here-- to destroy the facility. Now that the militia is completely distracted, they’ll be able to get in.”

Parker remembered seeing the gates standing open wide in the Elizabethtown gatehouse. He remembered entering the city, confused by the lack of activity in the gate, before the gunfire and screams reached his ears. He entered the city just in time to witness the undead swarming the unprotected market district; by the time the militia got there, everyone was dead. He probably used more ammunition that day trying to defend the city than in all his years as a Runner combined-- it seemed like the sea of undead never stopped. At the end of his week in Elizabethtown, he was a broken man who barely escaped with his life, fleeing the falling city with his pride choked down and his ammunition spent.

“Where do I fit into this?” Parker asked wearily.

“You were the only other Runner available who had defended E-Town,” Reuben stated.

“I don’t follow.”

Reuben urged him to start walking again, and so they did, speaking as they moved through the red-lit streets. Every so often, someone would run past them, fleeing something or another, possibly leaving the city or trying to find a loved one. The screams of terror and the gunshots were easily tuned out now that Parker knew he was getting to the bottom of the situation. “When I fought at E-Town, I fought to defend the med facility. When it became clear that the Runners were the real threat, not the undead, I coordinated with the security forces to try to fend them off. Eventually, the battle was a loss, and I was commissioned with a different task: to find Dr. Maxwell Orton and Dr. Laura Hurst, and get some documents from them. I did so, and they told me to take it to a man in Louisville. They entrusted me with the documents out of necessity, and I figured it was their dying wish, so I obliged. When it became clear all was lost for the med facility, and soon after for the whole city, I split and returned to Louisville, where I handed the documents over to a scientist there.”

“Maxwell Orton and Laura Hurst,” Reuben repeated.

“As in Laura? And her husband, Max?” Sal inquired suddenly.

Reuben nodded gravely. “Apparently they escaped, and married at some point. That was the big break; they were the only people who knew the research. When they emerged from the chaos as survivors, they contacted the scientist in Louisville and had him prepare a runner to send the documents back to them. Apparently they were the leading experts for that kind of work; the documents contained old world references that not many people could understand these days.”

“So the scientist in Louisville took the documents to the LRA, got the strongest box they had, and hired me,” Parker concluded.

“He wanted me, but I was already in Constitution on another delivery. When he saw your name on the roster, he recognized it from a list that had been compiled of the Runners that helped defend the E-Town. You were his second pick. After he hired you, he sent a transmission to me in Constitution telling me to look out for you, that you had the documents.”

Parker nodded deeply, as if everything made sense. “That’s why you were there to save my ass in Laura’s manor. I knew you were following me.”

“I was. I had to make sure you delivered those papers. Then everything went to shit in the manor, and suddenly I became your bodyguard. Everything after that was done on the fly. No one expected the Runners to know where Max and Laura had resurfaced. We were fortunate that Laura survived long enough to give us our next destination. Without that, we would have been stuck.”

“What about you two?” Parker said, turning to Noric and Drew. “Where do you guys come in?”

Noric glanced to him and spoke in his deep and clear voice, “We were dispatched by the Louisville Militia to track you down and recover your package. It was to be returned to the Militia Office immediately.”

“Normally, we aren’t hitmen,” Drew commented, “so we were a little suspicious.”

Noric spoke again, directing his eyes forward. “We did some digging. When we discovered what the documents were by tracking down the scientist using the LRA’s package records, we decided our orders were not worth following. We came to find you, to warn you about the danger you were in and, most importantly, to make damn sure that package reached its intended destination. After we heard what happened to the two doctors in Constitution, we learned you’d be heading to Shepherdsville, and set up along I-65 to catch you.”

Parker nodded, before turning to Sal and saying, “Please tell me you’re as ignorant to all of this as I have been.” Sal smiled lightly and nodded.

“What matters now is defending the med facility,” Reuben stated. “The militia here tops E-Town’s by a mile, same for the med plant’s security. The Runners have been badly outgunned and were losing fast. But now that the militia is gone, they might be able to sneak into the plant. Don’t worry about the city-- the militia can handle it. We need to make sure that facility doesn’t fall. Once it’s secure, we take the package to the recipient inside. Until then, we hang onto it, incase the shit hits the fan and we have to bug out.”

“Good idea,” Parker commented, nodding along with it. “How many Runners are we dealing with?”

“I don’t know,” Reuben said with a sigh.

“Maybe twenty,” interjected Noric, going on to say, “but they wouldn’t risk a frontal assault. They tried that and lost terribly. It’s more likely they’ll try to infiltrate quietly, maybe plant some explosives, and blow the place. They just don’t have the numbers to take on the security force and still be able to crash the whole plant. I think they know that.”

Parker nodded to him, turning his attention back to Reuben. “So if they sneak in, how will we know where they’re headed?”

“The facility is walled,” Reuben replied, “and they haven’t breached it yet. When they do, we’ll know. There are cams and lookouts everywhere. If they’re smart, they’ll pick a spot that would make it difficult for us to hit them right away.”

“Are there any underground entrances? Tunnels, maybe a cellar? Or even a storm drain under the walls?”

“Yeah, I think there’s a cellar underneath the facility, but I have no if it has an outside entrance.”

Just as Reuben finished his sentence, more gunfire echoed into the cacophony; it was much closer, and ahead of them. It was not from the wall-- it was from the facility. The group all looked to one another before breaking into a run toward the plant, everyone arming their weapons and preparing for a firefight.

“They aren’t expecting us,” Reuben stated as he rushed toward the sounds.

“We’ll flank them,” Parker stated.

Noric bumped Reuben’s shoulder and pointed to an alleyway, saying, “This will take us a street over-- it sounds like the gunfire is coming from the east side of the plant gates. Maybe we can find another alley on the next street to take us further east, to come in behind them.”

Silently agreeing, the group rushed through the alleyway and into the street, before Noric again spotted another alley. The five of them soon emerged several blocks east of the gates, the gunfire ahead very close, and they knew they would soon be upon the Runners. The five of them stacked up against the wall of a factory building neighboring the walled plant, while Reuben peeked around the corner.

“There’s a large group of them laying heavy fire on the watch towers,” Reuben stated as quietly as he could over the gunfire. Parker could barely hear him through his earplugs. “They must be clearing the area for an infiltration.”

Parker nodded, before motioning across the street and saying, “I’ll go around that building and hit them from the right. You come in behind and we’ll pinch them at the same time.”

“I’ll wait for your shot,” Reuben agreed.

Sal fell in line behind Parker as he quietly hurried across the road, avoiding detection from the Runners roughly a hundred yards away. He glanced over his shoulder to see her offer a reassuring look, and sighed softly. He did not want to see her go into combat-- he was not sure he could handle seeing her take a hit. Still, he had to play with the hand he was dealt, so with a deep breath he whipped around the corner of the building and rushed along the wall, turning the final corner. It was distant, but he had a clear line of sight on the group of Runners. They were tucked into a trench dug several feet into the ground, with piles of dirt lining the ridge of the hole. It provided excellent frontal cover and their muted clothing blended well with the earth.

“It’s vulnerable from four o’clock to eight o’clock,” Parker commented to Sal. “I’ll take the first shot. After that, weapons-free. Take the easy shots first-- they might not stay easy for long.”

With no sign of hesitation or reluctance, Sal nodded and tightened the grip on her AR. Parker glanced to around the corner to look for closer cover, but saw nothing reliable. He estimated the distance being somewhere just short of seventy-five yards from his spot to the enemy. It was not a difficult distance. He knelt down and lied prone on his stomach, angling his body so that he was in cover still with his rifle leaned around the corner, his eye peering through the scope. Sal stepped over him, leaning against the corner of the building, resting her arm against a nook in the brick building as she sighted in.

“I’ll take the black shirt on the far right,” Parker stated, calling his shot.

“I got the cargo pants with the sniper in the corner,” Sal replied.

That satisfied him-- those two men seemed to have the only long-distance weapons, which were doing the majority of the killing in the watch towers of the medical facility. Taking a deep breath, Parker slowed his heartbeat a bit and placed the crosshairs directly on the Runner’s black shirt. Seeing the man from a profile view, Parker knew all he had to do was send a round into his ribcage and it was a kill-shot-- at least one lung would be pierced, if not both, as well as the chance of hitting the heart if he aimed high-chest. Adrenaline pumped through his veins as he tried to control his breathing and his heart rate.

He let out a slow, hot breath, and the trigger eased back. His earplugs muted the crack of his carbine’s report, and the man in his crosshairs buckled rapidly, disappearing into the trench.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:14 pm 
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Cool story, keep it up. Poor Parker still don't have all the facts!!! :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:14 pm 
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I like it. And I think I figured the rest of the plot out. I just hope this doesn't end up being a short story.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:33 pm 
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You asked for some feedback...I didn't really like it at first, I think mainly because it was set so far into the future that you make up a world that has very little to do with today's. But I like your writing style, the lone wolf aspect and the mystery of the package. I am totally hooked, and I haven't even shot an AR. One weak point, Parker should not have trusted Reuben so easily, since he didn't explain why he was following Parker, until today's post.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 4:21 pm 
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FlashDaddy wrote:
Parker should not have trusted Reuben so easily, since he didn't explain why he was following Parker, until today's post.

Yeah, that always bothered me. I figured reuben was gonna double cross him.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 7:44 pm 
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Bearcat wrote:
FlashDaddy wrote:
Parker should not have trusted Reuben so easily, since he didn't explain why he was following Parker, until today's post.

Yeah, that always bothered me. I figured reuben was gonna double cross him.


Thanks for the honesty!

I tried to make it seem like it was just one of those things, that Parker being paranoid about being followed and that it was a coincidence. To be honest, the plot has been developing as I write the story, so I didn't really have it mapped out in the beginning, so Reuben was originally just going to be a guy who happened to be in the right place at the right time. But it all seemed a little too convenient so I had to do something else with him.

Still a work in progress-- postsing in chapters has ups and downs. One advantage is that it gets people hooked and makes folks start reading and subscribe, builds hype. One disadvantage is that what they read, they can't unread; it's not really viable for me to go back and change stuff in the previous chapters.

Thanks again for the feedback. :D

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 8:14 pm 
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It just seemed to odd to me for another runner just stalking a guy for no good reason. I knew their had to be one, just didn't know what it was.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 6:20 am 
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I was curious about it as well. But, figured the reason would come along soon enough. I didn't get the paranoid dude got lucky with help thing though. I was waiting for a double cross, but figured the horde messed that plan up. Still didn't trust him in town, but now it all makes sense.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 9:37 am 
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MaconCJ7 wrote:
I was curious about it as well. But, figured the reason would come along soon enough. I didn't get the paranoid dude got lucky with help thing though. I was waiting for a double cross, but figured the horde messed that plan up. Still didn't trust him in town, but now it all makes sense.


Good to know. Having re-read the first couple chapters, I think I see where I went wrong on failing to send out that vibe. It could have been done a little better.

The next chapter is coming soon. Today is the day we move to St Louis, so I'll be preoccupied for a day or two!

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 3:51 pm 
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Dude, you know the rules. No posting without updates. Dang nabbit.

Good luck with the move. I've moved plenty and I've hated it each time.

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So it seems pretty obvious that this has to do with a "cure" to the zombie virus. My question is how curable are 100 year old zombies?

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Bearcat wrote:
So it seems pretty obvious that this has to do with a "cure" to the zombie virus. My question is how curable are 100 year old zombies?


They have the same survivability rate as fresh zombies. I'm guessing that any *cure* would just stop the animation of death, and/or bring immunity to the living.

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I'm liking this story and look forward to moar


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 3:49 am 
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[Okay kids, the wait is over! I'm all moved in to my new place in Saint Louis and have finally found the time to write up a new chapter. Enjoy!

CHAPTER 11

By the time the group of insurgents realized they were flanked, it was almost over. The two snipers went down almost simultaneously, both taken down by Parker and Sal’s first shots. The rest of the targets responded slowly, beginning by looking around and poorly ducking for cover, when Reuben led the others into the their rear. In seconds, all but two or three of the most deeply entrenched enemies were down. Parker could see one peeking his rifle over the dirt, pointed toward Reuben’s group; steadying his aim, he waited a moment for the man to pop his head up, but the moment did not come. Instead, he squeezed off a round directly into the weapon; the bulled struck the side of the rifle very near the man’s fingers, causing him to jump back slightly. The startle was all it took to emerge from cover, and Parker quickly fired two follow-up rounds; at least one of them struck the man somewhere above the shoulders, and he dropped. Soon, the gunfire had stopped and Parker heard Reuben shout out the ‘all clear’ call.

Gradually, Parker stood and Sal moved from cover, creeping along the side of the building, watching for more contacts. They found none, and no more shots were fired; soon the groups met near the trenches, and all five individuals were relieved to see that everyone had come out unscathed. Parker peered into the trench to count seven bodies, all completely still. Such a waste.

“If we’re heading for the gates, now is the time,” Reuben said, “before the others realize what happened and organize.”

“Who knows where they are. They could be watching the gate,” Noric stated.

“I doubt it” Reuben replied. “They’re probably trying to find another way in. They wouldn‘t waste their time waiting by the door when they‘re on a tight schedule-- the militia will only be preoccupied for so long before they send men back here.”

“Alright then,” Parker said, looking toward the gates. “Let’s get going.”

The gates were up a slight hill, around the corner of the wall. The group moved back into the streets away from the trenches and into an alley that took them back toward the front end of the facility, before taking the road that led directly to the gates. As they moved up the road, Reuben pulled a white shirt from his pack and held it high over his head, at the front of the group. Then, together, they all ran down the road toward the gate, hoping earnestly that the security that manned the towers by the gate would respect their white flag. Soon they arrived unharmed at the gates, and called up to the guards on the wall.

“We have the package! Let us in!” Reuben hollered. The guard on the wall quickly vanished, and moments later, the gate opened.

The group stepped in through the massive doors, which closed behind them, into a cement-walled room. Behind cement cover on all sides were men wearing black battle gear with all manners of firearms aimed directly at the group. There was an awkward silence before Parker stepped forward, hands up and open until he pointed to his pack.

“Who is the package for?” asked the lead security officer, still peering down the sights of his rifle.

Parker replied confidently, saying, “Originally it was for Max Orton. Upon his death, I was instructed to take it to a man named Clyde, who I was told would be here.”

“You are the original Runner?” the man asked.

“That would be me,” Reuben interjected. “ Reuben Santiago. I recovered the package from E-Town. When it was resubmitted to the agency, I was already on a run, so it was given to this man.”

The officer nodded. “And what is your name?”

“Parker Mason. Please, take me to Clyde and let me get rid of this damn thing.”

“Alright then, let me see your papers. And who are your friends?”

Everyone seemed to relax slightly as Parker and Reuben handed their papers in. “Reinforcements,” Parker stated as he handed his to the officer. “The trip was dangerous, as you can imagine.”

“I’m sure,” said the man as he read their paperwork. A moment later, he handed the papers back and, much to everyone’s relief, waved for the rest of the security to lower their weapons. “Follow me.”

The group stepped in line quickly to follow the man as he turned toward the door that led deeper into the facility. The steel twin doors opened at some unspoken command, and swung outward, revealing a pastel white hallway with windows on either side. The group moved in, flanked by the better part of the security force, and the doors quietly closed behind them. Parker looked from side to side, seeing scientists and doctors inside clean white rooms, some wearing biohazard suits and some in lab coats. All of them seemed to stop what they were doing when they noticed their entourage being led through the hallway. Parker wondered if they knew what he carried, before realizing that he still did not have the answer.

They were led down the hall, around the corner, and into a small office at the end of the corridor. Inside, standing over a white table, was a balding middle-aged man with thick glasses and a careless come-over. He looked up as the group entered and stopped his work, setting his papers aside to face them.

“So you’re finally here,” he said with a heavy, exasperated sigh. Parker said nothing. “I’m Dr. Clyde Horton. You must be Parker Mason. You have no idea how eagerly I’ve been looking forward to this.”

“Yeah, same here,” Parker said, before reaching into his bag. His eyes glanced over the doctor’s name badge which agreed with his introduction, and so Parker finally pulled the metal box from its place in his ruck.

This was it, the moment he had longed for. The moment he could unload the package and be done with the whole mess, cut his ties to the box and just let everything go. He could take his money and leave, buy his manor in Constitution and never worry again. He would fill his life with subsistence farming and range shooting, rather than bare-bonds wilderness survival and undead marksmanship. He held the package in front of him and said, “Do you have the sum I was promised?”

The doctor took a step back, turning toward the safe implanted in the wall. It had a similar keypad lock to the one on the box, the same old world technology; he punched in a six-digit number and pulled from the large safe a black suitcase. He laid it on the table and popped it open, turning it toward him. “Fifty thousand, just as promised. Now, please, the package.”

Parker stared at the money in wonder, and everyone else did the same. Reuben suddenly jabbed Parker in the side, and Parker recalled why: he had implied it was only five or ten thousand. Smiling inwardly, Parker handed the box over to the eager doctor’s hands.

“Thank God,” he said, moving quickly to his desk in the corner. Parker rapidly grabbed the suitcase and set his pack down, shifting things around inside of it to make room for the suitcase. Moments later, he had it crammed into the back of his pack and contentedly slipped it back onto his back. “So, are we done?” Parker asked.

“That depends on you,” the doctor said.

“How so?”

“I think you want to know who has been trying to kill you. I think you want to know why this delivery wasn’t as simple as dropping it off. And I think you want to know what’s in this box, if you don’t already.”

Parker wanted to say ‘nope’ and walk right out the door. But unfortunately the doctor was right-- the curiosity was eating at him. “And I think you’re going to tell me in exchange for something else,” Parker replied.

“Sort of,” said Clyde. “I need you to stay here until the remaining Runners are found and taken care of. Until that happens, this package is still in danger.”

“Why should I care?”

“Because this package is the key to producing a cure, Parker. A cure that could restore humanity’s dominance in the world.”

At first, Parker just let out a light laugh. “A cure? You’re joking, right?” He folded his arms over his carbine and said, “What, so I’ve been carrying around a magic vial that can turn walking corpses back into mom and dad?”

“While I find your disbelief charming, Parker, I’m really not in the mood for cynicism. The box contains documents that belonged to a very gifted scientist, Dr. Maxwell Orton. He discovered some old world information somehow and amongst it was a formula that he couldn’t understand. For a long time, it was incomplete, and it became his obsession. But when Dr. Laura Hurst helped him complete the formula, preliminary tests helped to confirm that it was originally being engineered as a method of slowing the virus that reanimates the host. After years of work, the two discovered that with a few adjustments, it could be used to vaccinate humans and even cure the early onset of the virus. Before they could complete the final stages of their experiments, somehow word got out about it and their facility came under attack.”

Parker realized now that the doctor was serious, and that a cure was possible. Gravely, he moved closer to the doctor. “How does it work?” he asked in a shocked tone.

“It isn’t a miracle drug,” Clyde said. “We still think it can be used to vaccinate, but we can’t be sure yet. We have proven in previous tests, though, that it can completely eradicate the virus if administered directly into the bloodstream within an hour of contact. That is the only thing we are certain of, although we speculate that as long as the host has not expired, the drug should work. But at this point, that is the best hope we have-- that alone is more than all of the research we’ve done without this formula. And the formula would have been lost had it not been for you.”

“So you really think you can make a real cure?” Reuben asked, stepping forward to watch as the doctor punched in the code to open the box.

“Yes,” Clyde replied confidently. “Yes, I know we can. In a year’s time, I’m sure we’ll have turned this into something even more effective.”

“So why would anyone want to stop this from making it to you?” asked Parker. “Why would someone want to stop a cure?”

“Think about it, son. Who stands to lose the most if there were no more nonmortuis? Who would be ruined?”

Parker thought for a moment, but it quickly clicked. His face drained as he looked to his group, and then back to the doctor. “The LRA.”

Clyde nodded. “Yes. The LRA ordered these Runners to get the package, because if a cure was ever manufactured and the undead scourge done away with, the entire Runner operation would be unnecessary.”

The realization hung over the room and the group was silent for a moment. Then, Parker spoke, saying, “So why give me the package at all? Why didn’t they just kill the guy that brought it into the LRA and take it?”

“Probably because they didn’t know what it was until the pencil-pushers approved the form,” Reuben answered. “No one takes those forms seriously-- it’s pretty standard to ship out the product before the form is actually approved. This time, the LRA cutting corners really worked in favor for everyone else.”

“That’s probable,” the doctor commented. “But all of this can wait. Right now, we need to find the other Runners and make sure they haven’t compromised this facility. Please, Parker, I beg you to stay here and help secure this plant.”

“Alright,” Parker replied quickly. Now that he knew what was at stake, it required little thought to make a decision. Looking back to his group, he stated, “None of you have to stay.”

No one left. Parker smiled slightly, nodding, and looked from each one of them. His eyes lingered on Sal, who smiled reassuringly to him and he smiled back, before looking to Reuben, who nodded confidently to him. Parker looked back to the doctor and asked, “What should we do?”

The doctor gave him instructions, but Parker knew what came next. Once the facility was secure, it would not yet be time to buy his manor and settle down. The simple life would have to wait. He was a man who believed that the world should follow moral law, and the LRA had not. They needed to answer for it. Parker wanted his new life, the life of a farmer with a wife and land, but more than that he wanted the LRA to pay, not just for what they had already done, but for the world they would have made had they succeeded. Once the facility was locked down and the package was safe, he would personally make sure the people that made the orders took responsibility for them. This fight was not over.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPAW
PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:13 am 
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Not to sound gready or anything but:

MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR - MOAR -

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2011 2:12 pm 
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This is great stuff!!

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You know we had this guy in my platoon named Mohr, so it sounded a lot like MOAR and the DI's made it sounded like this...
MMMMMMMOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:12 pm 
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would love to see this story continued

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Need to update the BIOS on my computer. Until I do, I don't have access to my writings or the program I use to write them. I'm pretty much borrowing computers until I can get that taken care of!

Don't worry-- this story isn't dead! Promise!

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Need to update the BIOS on my computer. Until I do, I don't have access to my writings or the program I use to write them. I'm pretty much borrowing computers until I can get that taken care of!

Don't worry-- this story isn't dead! Promise!

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2011 12:18 am 
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Great story! Like others - I had a hard time wraping my head aroud the start of it, but it panned out just in time. When you do your re-write for the book-deal (just my speculation here), I would suguest a few more descriptive details to bring the reader into the world of the story.

Best Regards, and Thanks!

PS - put me down for one of the numbered and autographed coppies!


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:08 am 
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[Don't look at me like that! Times got hard and all my computers quit on me! I got one running again and FINALLY crapped out another chapter. Terribly sorry for the wait! I really missed writing this story and I'm very happy to come back to it. I had a couple people ask about it, and it was nice to see interest! Here you are kids-- enjoy!

CHAPTER 12

The cellar beneath the facility was cold, leaving Parker feeling clammy beneath his clothes. A day of fighting and running worked up a terrible sweat, and with his ruck safely stashed in the hallway behind them, his clothes were more open to the chill in the air. There were electric coolers everywhere, no doubt housing sorts of chemical agents or test specimens of some kind.

"Hey, check it out," Sal said, nudging Parker. He looked over to see her motion towards a relatively tucked-away wooden shelf that housed a dozen bottles of wine. She smiled coyly up at him and said, "Elk Grove."

Parker gave her a subdued grin, his normally-focused mind fraying at the edges with the heated memories of what they had done only one night earlier. Being reminded of his attraction to her only served to distract him, so he gave her a soft jab in the arm and returned his attention promptly to the cellar. "Find anything?" he asked, turning to look toward the others.

"Nothing yet," Reuben said, poking his head out from behind some metal shelves that lined the walls. He looked toward Noric and Drew, calling out, "How about you two?"

Shaking his head, Noric simply replied, "Nope."

"They won't be coming this way," Drew stated. "No doors or hatches anywhere in here. We should be out by the wall helping keep watch."

"No, it's been too quiet," Reuben commented with a sigh. "And since I doubt they ran off, I bet they've found a way to get past the wall."

No one responded, partially because they hoped that it was as ridiculous as it sounded. If they had blown their way through the wall, everyone would know. Otherwise, they would have to get through the gate, which was too heavily guarded. With no explosions or nearby gunshots in the past hour, nobody truly believed they had gotten past the wall.

Suddenly, the ground overhead rattled and shook. There was a terribly loud bang, muddled by several feet of concrete on all sides. Everyone in the cellar stumbled beneath the tremor it caused; Sal was pushed to the ground by the shock, while Reuben was pushed off balance and fell. The others were lucky enough to have been near something sturdy and withstood the blast mostly on their feet. Parker had been knocked to his knees, and looked up with slightly fuzzed vision to see Sal struggling to stand.

"Another explosion?" he heard Reuben call out. It sounded like he was hundreds of feet away, rather than an arm's reacg.

Parker hurried with crooked steps to Sal's side, grasping her hand and helping her to her feet. She was dizzy as well, but once again was unharmed.

"Anyone hurt?" Parker asked, looking about. There was a general murmur of a negative response.

"That sounded really fucking close," Reuben said.

Noric got to his feet, leaning against the cement wall. He took a deep breath and rubbed his pounding head, "Definitely the facility wall. The attack has started."

"Should we get upstairs then? Help them fight?" Drew inquired.

Reuben held up a finger, listening. Parker listened also, and noted immediately that there were no gunshots. If they had just breached the wall and were infiltrating, the guards on duty would be firing at them. Something was definitely wrong.

"It's a diversion," Parker said, looking to Reuben. The two exchanged looks of agreement, before Parker turned to face the others. "Be prepared. There will be more explosions if that was a diversion. If I were them, I'd be trying to distract the guards so that I could blow my way into the cellar."

"You really think they can blow through all this concrete?" Sal asked.

Noric chimed in, saying, "I've seen it done before. The militia have explosives that can cause that kind of damage. Judging by the amount of damage done to the city wall, I'd say these Runners stole some militia ordnance."

"If they do set off a bomb to get into the cellar," Parker said, "we can't let it surprise us or we'll be dead. This fight will be on their terms and we aren't even sure how many we're up against. Find some decent cover, but make damn sure your back is facing the hallway. Who knows which wall they'll take down."

Everyone shifted to find reliable cover in the cellar. After a brief discussion, they rearranged the metal coolers to form a barrier twenty feet inside of the mouth of the long hallway that led to the cellar. This left them with a narrow field of fire with clear view into the cellar, and a funnel that would push their enemies into the hallway, as well as a barrier to slow the enemy down if they made it past them. It also left them with a clear sprint to their escape route, making their possible retreat much easier. Once the barrier was made, Parker began pulling metal coolers down the hall, stacked two high and two thick from the perspective of the cellar; this would allow them to cover each other in bounds without leaving themselves in the open if they had to flee.

The others had all drawn aim on various parts of the walls in the cellar. They were prepared.

It was only a matter of minutes after their fortification was established that gunfire sounded overhead. For a moment, everyone thought they had guessed wrong, that the battle indeed was upstairs. But before anyone could open their mouths to speak, the world erupted like a volcano. There was a white hot fire that ripped through the cellar and blinded like the sun, reaching its tendrils several feet into the hallway before quickly dissipating. Simultaneously, an explosion to put all others to shame shattered the walls of the cellar, tossing massive chunks of rebar-laden concrete about like popcorn.

Parker had tried to assume a mostly low position to keep from being blow away when the blast struck, but the magnitude of the blast was far beyond what he had anticipated. He was slammed in the chest by one of the metal coolers and hurled backwards by the force of the blast, leaving him spread on the floor with a body of agony. He heard nothing but a stinging high-pitched tone once again, but could vaguely make out the flashes of gunfire flashing against the ceiling at which his confused eyes had focused. He struggled to move, the flashes of war growing brighter and more frequent. Summoning all the strength he had, he shoved to his feet. Pain shot through him and he screamed in pained but determined will, pushing to his knees. He grasped his rifle and crawled back to the barrier. He could see Reuben, up and crouched over the barrier, firing into the cellar. Sal was sitting, leaned against the wall. Drew and Noric were also firing, although Parker noticed Drew’s face covered in blood. He tried to focus his vision and lifted his rifle wearily, looking for a target.

There were two bodies lying in the mouth of the hallway, For a moment, there was a lull. Then Parker spotted movement, seeing a man run for cover in the hallway behind a waist-high chunk of concrete. Parker frantically fired a few shots, managing to strike the man once in the shoulder. His companions fired as well, tagging the man several times in the upper torso. Parker put an extra two shots into him to make a point and watched him collapse, soon replaced by two more enemies swinging around the corners of the hallway and laying down fully-automatic fire.

Parker’s heart jumped into his throat and he slammed himself onto the ground as the top of the metal cooler behind which he was hiding shredded into steel confetti. “Fuck!” he screamed, his heart perpetually skipping beats.

“LMG!” Reuben shouted from the prone position he’d been forced to take. Parker looked over Reuben’s shoulder to see Drew thrashing on the ground.

As soon as he spotted him, he heard Noric shout, “Drew’s hit!”

Frantically, Parker looked back to Sal to see her still sitting against the wall, as if there was no war at all. Why wasn’t she moving? Parker reached a hand out to her leg to shake her, and she lifted her head to give him a blank and expressionless look. He did not know what was wrong with her, but he felt sick.

There was a break in the gunfire, and Reuben tossed the barrel of his rifle over the top of their barrier and blind-fired to suppress them. Parker heard Noric chime some shots in, and shoved off the ground, ignoring the shooting pain that coursed through him. He looked down his ACOG scope to see one man, carrying an LMG with the breach pulled open, being dragged by the other man carrying a similar weapon. Parker did not hesitate to put the walking man in his crosshairs, drilling him with five rounds before putting three more into the already-grounded man. Clearly the first man had run dry and tried to reload, only to be hit in the process; the other man must have tried to drag him to cover, but in doing so, exposed himself too much. Just as Parker verified the two were dead, two Runners leaned out from behind the large chunk of cement and fired. Again, Parker had to duck down, and a moment later, the automatic fire started again. Another Runner must have taken the chance to snag one of the LMGs.’

From his spot on the ground, Parker noticed a small crack of space between two of the coolers they had set up. He crawled forward a bit and gently pushed them apart, making just enough space for the scope and barrel of his AR-15. The poorly-lit hallway made for good concealment from his unconventional position. Laying on his stomach with his body angled away from the gap, he rested the magazine of his rifle on the ground and steadied it with his left hand as he took careful aim. His weapon cracked out a shot, and the Runner with the LMG snapped his head to the side, collapsing. The other two men ducked into cover in response. Parker felt the agony in his pinky as his weapon rocked from the recoil; the finger was still swollen from his previous scuffle, and it seemed to hurt so much more with everything else added to it.

One of the men leaned out, and Parker watched the barrel of the man’s carbine drag right across him. Parker was stunned he did not get spotted, knowing the man had looked right at him. Hastily, he took aim and pulled the trigger. There was no report.

For a moment, Parker felt time freeze. He realized his weapon had failed, and time was no longer frozen, but moving ten times faster than normal. It felt like it took him a hundred years to get away from the exposed gap through which he was shooting. He cursed loudly and shoved away from the coolers, yanking his weapon back. After ripping back the charging handle, a dead bullet yanked out of the chamber and chimed to the ground. As the bolt moved forward again, the rounds double-fed into the chamber and the bolt jammed, at which point Parker realized he failed to eject the magazine. “Fucking jam!” he shouted out, tearing the magazine from the rifle and dropping it to the ground. He yanked the bolt back as hard as it could, but it was stuck; the round was lodged.

He had no time for this. Dropping the weapon to lay beside him, he pulled his Glock from his hip and crawled back to his gap. He peered through to see where the enemies were, and gasped when he saw them running for the barrier.

His eyes shot to Reuben-- reloading. Then to Noric-- on the ground, possibly hit. Parker felt terror grasp him as he shoved away from the barrier. He fired three fast rounds through the gap, and heard a yelp, before scrambling to his feet. When he stood full height, he lifted his pistol on target, and lost count of how many times he had pulled the trigger.

It was all a blur. There were so many gunshots, the flashes were so bright, the noise so muddled. Parker realized his earplugs had fallen out, probably during the blast. Had he not had them this whole time? He could hear to little, everything was so faint; he could feel the vibrations, the concussion of each gunshot. There were so many bodies, so many dead men in the hallway; sparks scatted off the walls all around him as bullets, coming and going, glanced here or there. Still standing, still pulling that trigger, still defending and fighting and killing, Parker staggered if only from the weight of the amount of death that would take place if these men were allowed down the hallway.

When Parker realized how delirious he felt, everything was so quiet. He was still standing. The slide was locked back on his pistol. The hallway was littered with corpses, some shifting slightly as the last bit of life bled from them. Guttural moans of death bounced like ricocheting bullets off of the pockmarked cement walls. Parker’s weary eyes looked down to see the figure of Reuben clambering to his feet, rifle in hand. He felt a hand clasp his shoulder, Reuben’s hand, and saw his lips move. What was he saying? Thanks? Maybe congratulations? Parker could not hear it.

His eyes fell to Drew, lying in blood. His head and arms moved pointlessly back and forth, as if he were trying to complete some task that no one else understood. Noric, covered in Drew’s blood or his own, knelt over his companion. To his left, he saw Sal, still against the wall. His feet shuffled him to her side, where he fell to the ground far harder than he intended.

His hand found hers, the slick feeling of blood between their palms. He looked her over, but saw no bleeding wounds. Where was the blood coming from? He followed the blood from his left hand, trailing up his wrist to his forearm just forward of his elbow, where he saw a gorge carved into his flesh. The blood drained from his face.

“I’m-- I’m hit!” he called out. His own voice seemed so far away. Why could he not feel it? All he felt was a dull ache caressing up and down his spine, maybe a tingling in his shoulder and his elbow. Should he be in pain? Suddenly, Noric was there, his blood-smeared hands digging through a medical pound. Parker looked up to see that Reuben was beyond the barrier, putting the final bullets into the men that still held onto life. Looking back to Noric, Parker muttered, “Sal! Check Sal! Check her!”

He used his good arm to shove Noric away. It satisfied him to see Noric quickly inspect Sal, before shrugging and returning to him. “What’s wrong?” Parker asked earnestly, the words coming out awkward and haggard. Noric spoke, but Parker could only see his lips move, gleaning that he had said ‘nothing’.

Sound slowly returned to the world, and with it came incredible agony. As the adrenaline fled from his veins, he felt every damage done to his body since the moment the fight began. He could hear echoes of his heavy groans bouncing back at him as he shut his eyes tightly. He felt the touch of icy cold steel in the flesh of his arm, then agony the likes of which he had never before felt. His screams echoed further and further into the distance, until suddenly, he was wreathed in a peaceful, calming silence.

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Last edited by Tribunal Power on Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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It's about time!! Glad you got at least one computer working, and even happier for the update. Keep at it now!

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