Part Thirteen

The tractor moved slowly down the road. Eula was driving it well, and with detailed directions provided by Betty, she didn’t even slow down when approaching intersections.

Kevin was impressed.

All he was did was stand in the trailer and hold onto the sides. He scanned the farmland and saw solo zombies wandering the paddocks chasing cows.

Everywhere he looked, he saw a zombie.

Everywhere he looked, he saw farmland. Yet, zombies were walking around. If a place like this had zombies, what would the town be like?

What would Melbourne look like with over four million of them?

He put the thought out of his mind by grabbing a spear, gripping it hard, then attempting to find a familiar hold. Trying to be a warrior of some kind. He needed to find his bravery to reduce the growing fear.

He thought of Amanda and about how she had been beside him. About how he had supported her.

Then he thought about Eula. A person with inner strength, a determination he had yet to see elsewhere. How had she been beaten down over the years at work, been ignored and undermined, and now she was standing up and putting herself in danger for total strangers. He wondered if her managers had the same gumption.

Betty said the trip would take about forty minutes each way. She advised driving slowly and made the route to Kyneton on the small quiet dirt roads for as far as possible.

The dirt on his face was a testament to that and a reminder that he needed to find a mask of sort kind for future trips.

Eula looked back to Kevin and pointed to the sealed road. It meant the town was five minutes away, it was time to prepare for wildness. It did not take long for the first small mob of zombies to meet their end at the hands of the tractor shovel. Eula had it well-positioned to give maximum damage, as they fell to the ground in pieces, the tractor wheels finished them off even more.

The trailer bounced more than Kevin expected.

He said to himself, “Hold on.” He looked back at the carnage. He had a reminder that the zombies were tough, maybe unstoppable, given a few of them were still trying to move even when their torso was missing their legs.

Fear was turning to terror now. His mind was racing, attempting to figure out why this was a good idea, considering ways to explain to Eula that they should turn around and go back.

A few more turns, another mob mowed down, another reminder that the zombies were extreme. A reminder for him to make sure the spear was always aimed at the head as body shots were clearly a wasted effort.

With each passing minute, more houses on the side of the road increased, a few were boarded up. Kevin caught someone looking through the window at them. A woman waving for help. Kevin waved back, gave the thumbs up to let them know they would be back for them soon.

Just before they were about to enter the town, Kevin took note of an earthmoving business. There were large trucks that would be perfect for transporting anything safely. They would be back for them later on.

One minute later, they rounded a corner that brought the road parallel to the freeway. What Kevin saw there petrified him. Eula slowed the tractor down just to look back to him with a look of horror on her face. The entire freeway was blocked with cars on both sides and overrun with zombies. Hundreds and hundreds of them.

The zombies all turned to the sound of the tractor and began walking towards them. Another turn then across the freeway on a bridge. Kevin took note of the zombies following the noise and how they were walking up the off-ramp onto their road. He wondered if a different way out was needed.

Eula turned to the tractor to their first stop, a timber yard. About a dozen zombies were meandering about, but that was expected. As soon as the tractor stopped, Kevin jumped off the trailer. With the bolt cutters, he snapped the lock, opened the gate to allow Eula through with the vehicle, then shut it again and linked the chain with an iron rod.

The zombies banged against the gate within a minute of securing the gate. Eula jumped out of the cab with her shotgun and walked away from Kevin with a determined walk. Three shots were belted out.

Kevin ran to see what had happened and was met with three headshot zombies. He grabbed his spear, held it tight, took a deep breath then waited for instructions.

Eula pointed to the planks they needed for the wall. It took thirty minutes to shove as many as possible onto the trailer, leaving plenty of room for people to stand. Thirty minutes was long enough for at least forty zombies to show up. Every minute was a new one leaning against the wire fencing.

Eula said, “Get back in. I will drive to the other side so we can exit there. Hopefully, there won’t be many of them there.”

She was correct.

When they left the area and returned to the main road, they were met with at least sixty more zombies walking down the street. Eula drove, as planned, directly beside the hunting shop.

She pulled the tractor up beside the shop. This time the plan was different. As soon as they stopped, ten zombies banged against the trailer, and five more went for the tractor cab. Eula assisted that by hitting the glass. Kevin climbed to the top of the tractor cab. He then reached over to the roof of the hunting shop and climbed onto it.

When he was on the roof, he realized his error of forgetting the spear. He was about to go back for it, but Eula was looking up at him, yelling at him to hurry up. So he turned around to look for the sun window Betty told him about. It took several decent hits with his heal to break the glass, they were stronger than they appeared. He removed the jagged edges as best as he could, then he climbed through the opening and dropped himself onto the floor. The gloves protected his hands from the glass pieces, still protruding from the edges.

He was in.

The groan behind him told him he wasn’t alone.

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