Read Fall of the Seven Cities Saga (Book 1) Online

Authors: Jay Brenham

Tags: #Zombies

Fall of the Seven Cities Saga (Book 1) (5 page)

BOOK: Fall of the Seven Cities Saga (Book 1)
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They looked toward the emergency room entrance. A few infected wandered through the police cars parked there but they immediately turned toward the sound of the screaming baby.

“Follow me,” Taylor said.

“Where?” Matt asked. Taylor didn’t answer; he was already running. There was no time to explain.

Jenna clutched the baby, who was still screaming, in her arms. They ran around the corner of the street and saw a waiting police car. When they got halfway to the police car, more infected started coming out of the emergency exit.

Matt could see his house, but if they went to there now the infected would just follow.

Taylor opened the patrol car’s front door and hit the button to unlock the other doors. Matt got in the front and Jenna slid onto the bench seat in the back as Taylor started the engine.

An infected man ran into the door and grabbed at the handle, pulling it open as Taylor shifted the car into drive. Taylor hit the gas and the infected man fell to the ground, dragging as Taylor accelerated down the road.

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER SIX

 

 

Taylor pressed the button on the radio with his thumb and relayed his location and status to the dispatch center. As glad as Matt was that Jenna had saved the baby girl, he was still glad she was in the back seat. That baby was making more noise than something that small had a right to.

Someone on the radio requested that Taylor switch to his personal phone.

Taylor switched his phone to speaker and answered. “Hey Steve, glad to hear you’re okay. You’re on speaker phone, but speak freely. The guy I’m with saved my ass back in that hospital.”

“What happened to everyone who reported to the hospital with you? No one is responding to status checks. They’re not giving updates, nothing.”

“They’re all dead or crazy, Steve. I think I’m the only one of us who made it out.” Taylor’s voice was tight and Matt remembered what Taylor had told him: that he’d known some of those officers since the academy. They must have been like a second family.

“I know your shift doesn’t start until later,” Taylor said, “And I know this sounds crazy, but don’t come in tonight.”

Steve paused and when he spoke, he didn’t answer Taylor directly. “Your wife and kids already showed up here. She told us everything that you told her on the phone. Your family is safe. They’re on the way to the farm with Terry and my kids.”

“What about you?”

“I’m headed in to get you. We’re getting out of that city together.”

“Just go to the fucking farm house,” Taylor snapped. “I’ll meet you there.”

“There’s no point in arguing. I’m already on my way. Where do you want to meet? How are you on ammo?”

“Fuck, I’m fine on ammo, Steve. I have extra rounds and mags in my trunk.”

Matt didn’t say anything. It wasn’t his friend or his conversation, but he knew Taylor had run his weapons dry in the maternity unit. He wasn’t fine.

“I know you’re lying, Taylor. Your usual car is in the shop. Are you telling me you pulled all of your stuff from the trunk and transferred it to your loaner vehicle? No one does that.”

Taylor’s expression was stony, torn between anger and worry. “Fuck you, Steve. Go to the farm house and I’ll meet you there. I have my AR-15 with three mags in the trunk. I’ll be fine,” Taylor said.

“Thirty rounds a mag, that’s 90 rounds. And I noticed that you didn’t mention your pistol or your back up, which means those are out of ammo. You need another gun in the fight. Name a spot to meet. I can help get you and whoever you’re with get out of the city. Somewhere safe.”

Taylor gripped the wheel in frustration. “Alright,” he said. “Meet me at Cooke Elementary, by the dumpsters.”

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER SEVEN

 

 

It was summer time and Matt was thankful that school was out for break. He was also thankful the baby had cried itself to a point of exhaustion, finally falling asleep in Jenna’s arms.

Behind the school there was a partially fenced area for dumpsters. Taylor backed the car in and got out, opening Jenna’s door from the outside as he walked by. The locks on the rear doors prevented a prisoner from opening the door from the inside.

Matt got out and walked around to the back of the car. They hadn’t seen any more of the infected, but he could hear sirens from several different directions. Somewhere farther off, tires squealed.

The inside of Taylor’s trunk was empty, except for a long black plastic case.

“My trunk isn’t normally this empty,” Taylor said, rubbing his forehead absently. “You heard what Steve said: this is a loaner vehicle from the pool. I only pulled this out because it’s department policy not to leave weapons in your car when it’s being serviced. In my regular patrol car I have extra ammunition and magazines for the pistol, the rifle goes in a rack next to me, but the pool cars don’t have the racks for rifles.”

“A bad day not to have your normal car,” Matt commented.

Taylor grimaced. “Yeah, just my luck.”

Taylor opened the case. Inside was what looked like a machine gun and three plastic magazines with small windows that showed part of the bullet. Or at least Matt thought it was a machine gun. He wasn’t completely sure. He’d never been frightened of guns, but other than the occasional action movie, he’d never given much thought to shooting one either.

Taylor grabbed the weapon like it was an extension of himself, deftly putting a magazine in the bottom of the gun and racking the slide. He tucked the other two magazines in his front pockets.

“I want to try to get inside the school before Steve gets here. It’ll be safer than waiting in the open,” Taylor said.

Jenna still hadn’t moved. It was clear from the look on her face that she didn’t want to leave the car. Matt could understand that. They’d just been trapped inside a building full of crazy people and she wasn’t excited to go into another when they had a perfectly good car.

Matt squatted down beside her. “How’re you holding up?” he asked, making his voice calm.

“Okay I guess. As well as can be expected,” Jenna said. Her chin wobbled a little but she didn’t cry.

Matt nodded toward the sleeping baby. “Why didn’t her parents come get her?”

Jenna hugged the baby tighter. “She was born early this morning and her mother passed away shortly after. We don’t know who the father was.”

“Ready?” Taylor asked, coming to stand behind Matt. Matt nodded and Jenna stepped out of the car.

Taylor tried the back door of the school but it was locked. Matt walked to the nearest window and cupped his hands to peer through the glass. Inside was an empty room full of desks.

“Step back, for a second,” Taylor said, slinging his AR-15 behind him and withdrawing his baton from his belt.

Matt grabbed his arm. “Wait a minute.”

“What?”

Matt jerked his head toward Jenna. “The baby. She’s gonna scream when you break the glass and anyone in shouting distance is going to come running. Why don’t you go around the corner with Jenna and the baby. I’ll break the window and climb inside, then I can walk around and open the door for you.”

Taylor made a face. “We shouldn’t split up.”

“Jenna and the baby can’t be off alone. You have the gun. The baby will be safer if you’re with her.”

None of them had spoken about it but the baby was what they were all thinking about, the reason they were together. She was so small, swaddled tightly in Jenna’s arms. She looked peaceful even though the world had gone to shit.

Taylor nodded once. “Alright.”

Once Taylor and Jenna were safely around the corner, Matt took the hammer and smashed one of the glass window panes. It sounded like thunder and Matt flinched and looked around but he didn’t see anything to indicate that he’d been spotted.

The window was chest height. He did his best to clear the glass away with the hammer, but as he pulled himself inside, he felt a sharp sting above his elbow as it scraped against a jagged shard of glass.

His feet hit the carpeted floor softly and he glanced warily around even though there was nothing remotely alarming about it. The classroom smelled musty, as if the door and windows had been closed for a few weeks. Small chairs were turned upside down and sat atop equally small tables.

Matt glanced down at his arm. The glass had left a deep gash in his tricep. He grimaced and wiped the blood away as best he could; there was nothing else he could do for it.

The door knob turned without a squeak and the door itself opened just as quietly. The hallway outside was dark and the walls were bare of artwork. Despite the absence of children’s artwork it looked like a pretty nice school, Matt thought. There were still large banners hanging on the walls, silently encouraging children to read and eat plenty of vegetables.

Matt could see Taylor, Jenna, and the baby through a set of glass double doors, but when he looked at the doors he saw they could only be unlocked with a key. They would all have to come in through the broken window. Matt knocked on the window and pointed towards the classroom he’d just come through.

Taylor nodded his understanding, but when Matt returned to the classroom they weren’t there. He looked outside and saw them walking from the car. Jenna was now carrying the bag she had stuffed full of formula and diapers, while Taylor carefully scanned three hundred and sixty degrees around them to make sure nobody approached unnoticed.

They’d just reached the window when Matt saw a dark figure approaching from the baseball diamond.

“I see someone,” he whispered. “Hurry up.”

Jenna handed the baby to Taylor so Matt could take her hand, pulling her through the window. Then he reached out for the baby and handed her to Jenna. The figure was closing in, cutting the distance between them rapidly.

“He’s getting closer,” Matt said warningly. “Come on, Taylor.””

He held out a hand to Taylor, not taking his eyes off the approaching man. Now that the person was closer, Matt could see him better. He was wearing a red bandanna and a black t-shirt that had a red silhouette of a man running with a cleaver. Black and white clown makeup covered his face so that his lips appeared to be stretched into a permanent black smile.

“Fuck,” Taylor muttered.

Matt glanced back at Taylor. His duty belt had caught on the edge of the window. Now he was half inside the window and half out.

The dark clown was only a few strides away. Matt reached out and grabbed Taylor’s legs, flipping him through the window and onto the classroom floor with a thump. Matt raised his hammer, ready to strike.

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER EIGHT

 

 

“I’m not here to attack you guys. Can I come in?” The clown said.

Taylor stood up and put the sights of his rifle squarely on the dark clown’s chest.

Matt wanted to say no. The guy gave him the creeps. Who runs around wearing clown makeup? He looked the dark clown over but he had no obvious signs of infection or bite marks.

He sighed. “Okay. Come on in.” He couldn’t sentence this guy to being out on his own among all the infected just because he wore creepy makeup.

Taylor lowered his weapon but the tension never left his face. He was just as nervous as Matt. Matt braced himself against the windowsill and offered the dark clown his hand.

“Into the hall,” Taylor said, once the clown was inside. He motioned for Jenna to stay in the classroom with the baby.

Once the three men were in the hallway, Taylor closed the classroom door behind them, still not taking his eyes off the dark clown.

“Stop right there and put your hands behind your back,” Taylor said.

“Fuck you, man.” The clown didn’t even pause. “I didn’t do nothing wrong. I just need a safe place, like you guys.”

Taylor stopped walking and pulled out his Taser with his left hand. A red dot appeared on the back of the dark clown’s shirt. There was a pop, followed by the clacking sound of the Taser as it sent electricity surging into its target.

The clown let out a yelping sound that reminded Matt of an injured dog. His arms and legs went straight and his back arched as he fell against a wall towards the floor. Before the clown could hit the floor, Taylor was there. Still holding the Taser in one hand, he caught the clown’s head with the other, just before it smacked against the tile floor.

The Taser stopped discharging abruptly.

“Now shut the fuck up,” Taylor said, “Put your hands behind your back or you’re gonna get it again.”

This time the clown did as he was told. Taylor had handcuffs on the dark clown in the time it took Matt to blink.

“Look, am I being detained or something?” The dark clown was still panting, even though the pain had stopped. “I told you I didn’t do nothing wrong. I just want someplace safe to go. I didn’t break in! You guys were already inside.”

Taylor ignored the clown’s questions and searched him, pulling two knives and a bottle of soda from his pocket. Matt squinted at the unfamiliar label: Faygo. Taylor also checked him more thoroughly for bite marks.

BOOK: Fall of the Seven Cities Saga (Book 1)
5.11Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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