HELLS ON EARTH
Eula was looking out the window at two men and one woman standing at the end of the driveway. They each carried a rifle and a handheld weapon. A bat, a machete and a crowbar respectfully.
She said, “Why are they staying there?”
Betty entered the room as she answered, “Because they are my neighbors and are being respectful to me. They may also be wondering how the zombies are all dead. I will find out.”
By the time she finished her sentence, she had opened the door to discover it was boarded up to her chest.
“I was going to leave now but….” then she gave a little giggle.
At the top of her voice she called out to them, “Jeremy, Bill, Deana, just wait there and I will come to you.”
They all smiled and raised their hand to her to acknowledge they had heard her.
Betty turned to leave and said as she did, “You all know what to do today, so do it. I will go back to their farm to see what is happening. Expect them to be here when you all return.”
She was gone.
Eula closed the door, but only after she gave them a friendly wave, it was not returned.
Kevin said to Eula, “We can leave for Kyneton after they leave.”
Fred added, “We will too. Betty gave directions to the three farms she wants us to visit. We will be riding away from here for about two hours, so we better find a tractor to get us home.”
Betty reappeared, “John, you are coming with me.” She disappeared again. John stood there looking like he did not know what to do.
Carol said, “Mate, you better not keep her waiting.” John switched on and jogged out of the room while the others laughed a little.
They all watched Betty and John approach the visitors. Betty embraced them all, they talked for about twenty minutes then got into a car and drove off.
The sun was just beginning to light up the horizon.
Carol said, “Okay, time to go. I have the rifle, my spear and food and water in the backpack. How about you, old man?”
Kevin smiled and said, “I am ready, you better not slow me down because I will leave you behind.”
They both left the house bantering away to each other. It seemed like they were going for a relaxing ride to the park or beach, not a potential death trap involving death by biting and becoming the undead.
Lilly had her spear, “I put the spears into the trailer as well as food and water for ten people. When I was on the trailer coming here, I was thirsty. I figure, these new people will be as well.”
Eula smiled, gave her a pat on the back and said, “Good thinking, now, lets get moving. I want this over with as fast as possible.”
Eula launched herself into the tractor cab, turned the tractor on and waited for the go ahead signal from Kevin. She ran through the plan, checked the map and directions given by Betty.
Today was information day. Before the survivor pick up, they were going to check out if the library was accessible, then check out the earth works company to see what kind of large trucks they had, then the supermarket for supplies.
She thought it was a lot of danger for limited returns, other than the people.
Kevin gave the signal that he was ready to move, so she got the tractor moving. She kept a close on eye Kevin and Lilly. He was spending a lot of time talking to her, probably explaining far too many things as usual. He meant well, but most people had trouble keeping up with his information overload.
The road started out clear of everything. It was like a normal road on a normal day.
Until the first mob of zeds appeared up ahead.
There was only four of them, so she decided to run over them. Betty had been very clear about this. She stressed the importance of considering the zeds as extremely dangerous monsters that are better off run over by a tractor, than left to roam the region killing the few people who were still alive.
Eula immediately agreed with her. Yet, having to plough over things that looked like people caused her heart to speed up a lot, sweat poured from her skin in every place, and she felt sick in the stomach.
She knew it had to be done.
It made little difference to how difficult it was to actually doing it.
She tooted the horn to warn of rough zombie waves coming, Kevin and Lilly both held the trailer railings in time. She ensured the shovel hit as many necks as possible, although she attempted to not look at the actual impact. She diverted her eyes down the road instead, and there she saw another mob.
This was the standard routine for the next fifteen minutes, until the number of zombies went from five to fifteen to something like an ocean of them on the road walking towards them.
Hundreds and hundreds of them.
Eula stopped the vehicle, opened the can door after doing a zombie check, then called out to Kevin, “Hey Kev, I think we need another road, what do you think?” She pointed to the massive mob.
Kevin took a look, “Oh my god, that is not a good thing to see. Yeah, there is a turn off up ahead, go down there. Do you want Lilly in there to give directions?”
Lilly wasted no time leaping across to the tractor, she squeezed in and closed the door. Lilly said, “Where is the map?”
Eula handed it to her, and before Eula could explain anything Lilly said, “Turn down that road there, I know how to get us there in a different way to how we left Kyneton.”
Eula looked a little confused, then remembered. “Oh yeah, you are a local.”
The new directions went down some very narrow country roads, but within ten minutes they were back on sealed roads and there were barely any zeds to be seen.
Lilly was giving clear directions to their first stop, the earth moving company. They did a drive by with about sixty zeds giving chase. What they saw as several large earth moving trucks that would be perfect as escape vehicles. All they really needed now were the keys, which would be in the building, and fuel, which was going to be a total pain to get.
Next stop was Kevin’s idea, the library.
When Eula pulled up beside the library Kevin was jumping for joy, even though the zed mobs were almost always nearly surrounding them immediately when they stopped.
Kevin was yelling, “I can easily get onto the roof and get into it now. Also, dear Eula and wonderful Lilly, across the road is the supermarket and it looks like it hasn’t been looted at all. This is a good day.”
Eula shook her head in bemusement at how Kevin could be so happy when they were being inundated. Yet, she knew the job well enough. She took the tractor to the edge of the building, allowing Kevin to climb onto the roof. He disappeared quickly.
Eula said, “Now, we need to do a road clearing run like we did with you guys. He has thirty minutes to get in and out. Then we drop him to the supermarket, and we pick up the survivors. That means you need to get back into the trailer.”
Lilly looked pale, but she nodded her head. Eula sped up to shake of the hanger on zombies, then slowed down to make the job of Lilly doing the return jump back as safe as practical.
She got out of the cab and made the leap without issue.
Eula was impressed.
That was when the tractor stopped working.