Chapter 03

By: CJZ♂


The author claims all copyrights to this story and no duplication or publication of this story is allowed, except by the web sites to which it has been posted, without the consent of the author.

This story is purely a work of fiction and any resemblance to person's living or dead, or to events that may have occurred is purely coincidental.  Moreover, none of the actions of the characters in this story are meant to condone, approve, or sanction their behaviour.

My most sincere thanks to all of the readers that have written me in regards to the story.  

I appreciate your feedback and sentiments which have provided much inspiration, encouragement and support.
All comments are welcome and if you wish to contact me, please feel free to email me at

And a great, big thank-you to Matt for all his patience and assistance.

You can find my other novels 
in the Prolific Authors section of the Nifty Archive, under...Lycan Pure Blood

My other works in progress can be found under the following categories...


The Ties That Bind


Once In A Lifetime (Shelved)


Eagle's Honour (Shelved)


My Father's Glory (Shelved)

Phelan's Awakening

Wolf Creek Falls


Science Fiction or Fantasy



Lycan Bloodline

Please, support the Nifty Archive by making a contribution.

And as always, a great big thank-you to Matt for all his patience, assistance and support.


May 09, 2016

Newark Bay, New Jersey, U.S.A

3:35 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time(EDT)

Port Newark–Elizabeth Marine Terminal

Kevin J. Walsh and Danny A. Lombardi, work as security guards for the Port Authority of Newark, New Jersey.  Both young men are 
25 yrs old, single, employed and still living at home.  

Life is pretty much carefree and easy for the boys.  

But all good things, sooner or later come to an end.

At the moment, the guys are both enjoying their laid-back and comfy bachelor lifestyle(much to the headache of their parents).  They're the stereotypical example of hot blooded young men, who enjoy the company of girls(sex), drink alcohol to excess(beer), enjoy food(Mom's home cooking) and love to party(pot)...and not necessarily in that order.  

Kevin and Danny have lived and grown up in the neighbourhood of Bergen County, New Jersey all of their lives.  They've been the best of friends ever since childhood and from a very young age, they developed a close bond and strong friendship.  The boys practically became attached at the hip as they grew up and have remained close ever since.  

As kids, their parents went through many headaches in trying to put both boys in 
the same after school activities.  Everything from little league, to soccer, football, boy scouts and even summer camp.  To put it bluntly, the boys were inseparable.  

But, at least their mother's took solace in knowing that wherever Kevin was, Danny would be right there beside him and vice versa.  They also knew that their boys would always watch each other's backs.  

Kevin and Danny end up going to the same 
elementary school and then highschool.  Their brotherly bond, became rock solid over the years and as far as they were concerned,...they were brothers from different mothers.  

Comfort aside though,
both boys were still living at home(rent free) and in no rush to move out.  But, at some point everyone has to grow up.  In some cases, all it takes is a loving push, a heart to heart talk, or in their case...

A shit storm heading their way.

Kevin and Danny are one of those few employees, who actually didn't mind working the graveyard shift(gives them both more time to sleep in, or fuck around during the day).  This is also the only shift where they could both work together and since they were inseparable, they both jumped at the opportunity.

This evening had started bitterly cold, windy and with pissing rain.  The news on the radio was forecasting that the rain would be stopping by early morning and then the heavy winds and storm would be heading south.

"O.k.  So, let me get this straight..."

Kevin rolled his eyes, sighed and wondered, why he'd even bother to tell Danny about his relationship problems.  Well, that's not entirely true.  Danny was his brother and he needed to get this off his chest.  They told each other everything and had been that way all their lives.  So, why stop now?

won't put out, she refuses to suck your dick, and she won't jack you off, either?"

Kevin pursed his lips and looked away embarrassed, while nodding.  The boys were on their way out of the cafeteria, having refilled their coffee mugs and eaten a couple of stale blueberry muffins.  It was close to 3:30 a.m. and they needed to do their rounds.

"Dude, that sucks!  No pun intended, bro."

Danny slapped Kevin's back pretty hard, as they stepped into the freezing, windy, pre-dawn air.

"Watch it, you douche!  I almost spilled hot coffee all over myself!"  Kevin gave Danny an angry glare.  

Danny realized that something was bothering his best friend(and it wasn't his girlfriend).  Kevin was never this grumpy and sour, even at this ungodly hour.  

Girls were always throwing themselves at Kevin all the time.  And if for some reason, a girl was somehow immune to Kevin's charms and refused to have sex with him on the first date, he'd simply dump her ass and move on.  So, getting shot down wasn't a big deal, there was bigger, juicier and sluttier fish in the sea.  There was certainly more to this story.

Now, it was Danny's turn to sigh.

"Hey, don't look at me that way.  If memory serves me right, I warned you about her.  I told you from the start that she was a prude.  But, would you listen?"
Danny shook his head and took a sip of his scalding hot coffee.

"You know that it's not too late to dump her frigid ass, right?"

Kevin sighed heavily.

"I can't do that Dan.  Besides, my mom really likes her and Debbie believes in staying a virgen until she gets married.  I respect that."

Danny almost chocked on his coffee, as he rolled his honey hazel eyes.

"Oh, please!  Since, fucking when?"

Kevin nodded his head sideways and started walking away, trying to avert Danny's glaring eyes.  

"I can't dump Debbie for not sleeping with me, Dan!  That's pretty fucking shallow, even for me."

Danny put his right hand on Kevin's left shoulder and stopped him.
"Are you being serious with me?  I'm going to say this, again.  Since, fucking when?  What's gotten into you?"

Kevin pulled away, but Danny tried to stop him from walking.

"C'on, Kev!  Talk to me, bro."

Danny caught up to Kevin, grabbed him by the shoulder and gently turned him around.  As the cold rain started to come down hard, 
Kevin looked away and was still avoiding Danny's questioning eyes.

"My mom wants me to settle down, allright!  Before, she..."

Danny sighed and immediately knew what this was about.  Now, he understood and deeply felt Kevin's pain.  

Kevin's mom is battling cancer.  

This is
Mrs.Walsh's second battle with the disease and the latest diagnosis was not good.  The doctor's told the family that her body wasn't responding to the chemo treatment and that she might have until the fall, but no longer than that.

"Maybe, my mom is right, Kev.  Maybe, Debbie is the right girl for me.  Afterall, she comes from a respectable Catholic family, she has a good job, she loves kids and my parents love her.  And look at me, I'm 25 years old, single and I'm tired of the bar scene.  I also feel that it's time to settle down."

Danny knew that this wasn't the real Kevin talking.  He knew his brother very well.  This was pain, pressure and stress talking.  

Danny didn't sigh(although, he wanted to) and he also didn't want to say anything more on the subject.  What's there more to say?  It looks like Kevin has made up his mind.  And when Kevin makes up his mind, there's no one who can change it(well, perhaps Danny.  But, not in this case).  

Danny also respected and loved Mrs.Walsh, like she was his own mother.  But, he also knew a mother's ultimate and most powerful weapon, guilt.

In all honesty, Danny's own mother was the same way.  She had on many times, told Danny that he needed to grow up, settle down and start a family.  But, being the youngest of 5 boys, his older brothers had taught him all the family trade secrets and his mother's guilt and mind games had stopped working a long time ago.

"Well, listen bud.  You know that I'm here for you, right?  Anytime, day or night.  If you ever need to talk.  I'm here for you, always."

Kevin nodded his head and was trying really hard not to cry.  He didn't want to come off as a weak little bitch.  So, he started walking away as a single tear fell from his emerald green eyes.  Even though Danny and Kevin were the best of friends, they were still men.  And men don't show any fucking emotions and they certainly, don't fucking cry.

As they started walking quietly towards the docks, Kevin took a sip of his steaming hot coffee.

"Ugh!  This coffee is fucking terrible!  How can you drink this shit?"

Danny looked at his best friend and laughed.

"You're still not used to used to Colin's toxic brew?  Man, you're such a pussy, Walsh!"

Danny continued laughing, as he took a sip of his coffee.

"It's not that bad, really.  I don't know, I actually kinda like it."

Kevin made a face and pretended to punch Danny on the right shoulder.

"Yeah, you fucking would!  I think that big swinging Italian salami of yours, drains all the fucking blood from your brain, along with any common sense.  Well, that and you also don't have any good taste."

Danny flipped Kevin the middle finger and grabbed his ample and bulging crotch.

"Fuck you, Walsh!  You've always been jealous that I've got two inches on you.  And that my baby-maker still has it's hoodie!"

Kevin laughed, rolled his eyes and shrugged his shoulders.

Whatever, fucker!  You may have two inches on me.  But, what I lack in lenght, I more than make up in girth!"

Now, it was Danny's turn to laugh and roll his hazel eyes.  But, deep down inside, Danny smiled and knew it to be true.  

Afterall, the boys have been comparing and measuring each others dicks, ever since they were 11 years old.  All it took was for an 11 year old Kevin to come across his father's measuring tape in the family's garage.  Boys being boys, these two unzipped, measured each others dicks and even kept a log of their growth.  Typical preteen boys, 
full of energy, determination, guts and all about competition.

Danny may have 12 hard inches of Italian salami over Kevin's 10 inches of Irish tubesteak.  Yet, on the other hand Kevin's dick is thick as his fucking wrist.  From base to tip, that huge red-headed, Irish
circumcised fucker has a monster dick that will split you open.  In highschool and in many locker rooms, Kevin's heat-seeking moisture missile has often been checked out, envied and ofcourse, lusted after.  It's often been described as thick as a beer can and as long as a fucking baseball bat.

Both boys were laughing and pushing each other in the rain.  And this was the moment Danny was hoping for, something funny between brothers to cut the tension and sadness in the freezing air.

Danny and Kevin continued to laugh, but stopped their roughhousing.  Danny then put his right arm over Kevin's left shoulder and both headed towards the loading docks.

"I keep telling you, bro.  Colin is a fucking old stoner that has no palate.  That old fucker fried his taste buds, much like he did his brain in the fucking 60's."

Kevin laughed, as he dumped his coffee on the pavement.  

"You're probably, right.  Long-haired, mother fucking hippie."  Kevin muttered as he kept walking.

he freezing rain was coming down hard and the gusting winds were making it worse.  Both boys were only wearing their spring jackets, and as they made their way to the loading docks, they were getting soaked and feeling the cold rain, seep deep within their bones.  

They walked up to loading dock gates, swiped their ID cards and the heavy, iron gates slowly opened.  Once they were inside the loading area, the large automatic gates closed behind them.  

As they made their way further into the docks, they walked past rows of neatly stacked, shipping containers from Maersk Sealand, Cosco, "K" Line, Evergreen, Seastar, etc.

Their job for the night was to head over to loading dock 8, where shipping containers 
from Shanghai, China had arrived earlier in the day.  They were to check that the all the containers had sealed locks, along with the proper paperwork for release into U.S. customs.  

There were a total of 40 containers to check, so this was going to take quite a while.  Once the boys had finished, they were to make a call to custom officials and they would take over.

As Danny kept going on and on about their Supervisor Colin.  Kevin felt his iPhone vibrate in his shirt pocket.  He discreetly took it out and saw that he had 5 missed calls and 3 voice messages.  

Ahh, shit!  

5 missed calls, really?  

What the fuck?  

He didn't even feel his phone going off?  

Kevin discreetly checked his phone and saw that it had been his girlfriend Debbie, who had called him.  

Now, what the fuck could she want?  And at this fucking hour?  

Was she keeping tabs on him?  

It was close to 4:00 a.m and Debbie should've been asleep at this time.  She was a teacher's assistant at St. Paul's Catholic Elementary School and she usually got up around 7:00 a.m., or a little bit earlier.  But, not this fucking early!
Kevin hated when girls got clingy and Debbie was just the fucking type.  He thought it best, to give her a call when Danny wasn't around.  The last thing he needed was for Danny to get a wind that Debbie was calling to check up on him.

Fuck sakes!

Kevin was going to have to act quickly, put his foot down and nip this at the bud.  Right after work, he was going to march up to Debbie and tell her, not to be call or text him at work.  Unless it was a fucking emergency, then fine.  But, in his type of work, he dosen't have the time to be answering the damm cell phone everytime it rings or waste his time sending stupid texts back and forth.

Kevin again discreetly put his iPhone back into his shirt pocket.  He then remembered something hilarious that his sister had mentioned to him last night.

"Hey, Dan.  Hold on, I keep forgetting to mention something to you.  Did you know that your mom has been asking about nice girls for you?"

Kevin tried very hard to keep a straight face.  
His emerald green eyes sparkled a mischievous look, and now it was Danny's turn to look at his bud, inquisitively.

Danny shot Kevin a glance and furrowed his brow.

"Huh?  What?"

Kevin couldn't help to grin from ear to ear.

"Yeah, ummm.  Your mom has been asking at church, if there are any good girls to date her sweet, wholesome and virginal boy."

Kevin couldn't help to tease his best friend and started batting his thick lashes, while also making loud kissing noises.

Danny shot Kevin a look and gave him the middle finger.

"Fuck you, Walsh!"

Kevin whistled, as he shrugged his shoulders.

"Whatever, man.  Go ahead and ask your mom, if you don't believe me.  Just don't shoot the messanger, bro."

The boys were making their way further and further into the loading docks.  They were so deep into their conversation, that they weren't paying close attention to their surroundings.  




"I'm not shitting you, dude.  
My sister overheard the conversation.  She says that she heard your mom say and I quote..."Does anyone know, if there any good girls for my son to date?"

Danny stopped in his tracks and put his right hand on Kevin's chest.

"You, fucking with me?"

Kevin kept a straight face and nodded, no.

"You serious?  'Cause if you're not!  Swear to me, that you're not making this shit up."

Kevin sighed and looked into Danny's eyes.

Scouts honour, bro.  C'on, would I ever lie to you?"  

Danny closed his eyes and his face turned an angry shade of red.

"Shit, shit, shit!  No wonder she's been trying to drag me to church every Sunday.  Wait a minute, back the fucking truck up a bit.  What do you mean by, good girl?"

Kevin stiffled a laugh.

"Oh, you know...a good girl!"

Danny looked pissed.

"What the fuck, Kev.  Spill it, man!"

Kevin couldn't hold it in anymore and laughed out loud.

"A virgen!  You, dumbass!"

Kevin's mouth dropped.

"Oh, dear Lord!" Danny covered his eyes with his hands.  

"Jesus H. Christ, Kev.  No wonder, Theresa Vespucci was all over me at the bar last Saturday."

Kevin was trying really hard to supress a laughter.

"Yuppers, bro.  I guess, she wants you to put a ring on it..."

Danny closed his eyes and put his hands behind his head.

"Oh, my sweet Lord!  Theresa is a sweet girl and I hear she can cook.  But, c'on she's built like a fucking tank and...woof!"

Kevin couldn't stop laughing, as he shrugged his shoulders.

"Sorry, bro.  Wish I was..."

Out of the corner of his eye, Kevin saw something moving in the shadows by one of the containers.

"Hey, you!  You're trespassing on private property.  Don't you, fucking move!"

Danny quickly turned around and looked in Kevin's direction.

Kevin had taken out his flashlight and was pointing towards a man that was crouching on the ground.

"This is a restricted area!  I want to see your hands on top of your head, now!"

Danny took out his gun and was now pointing it at the intruder.  At the same time, he's cell phone started vibrating in his pant's back pocket.  But, at the moment he was distracted and his adreneline had kicked in.  He was so nervous and pumped, that he didn't even realize that his phone was going off.  

In an almost slow motion, the man who had been crouching, slowly turned around and faced them.  As he did, he almost made the boys barf their last nights dinner.

"Dale?  Buddy?  Is...that you?"

Danny looked at Kevin in confusion.

The man with whom Kevin was talking to was filthy, wearing rags for clothes, barefoot, soaking wet and seemed dazed and confused.  

The first thing Danny noticed that something wasn't quite right, was the fact that half of this guy's face was all fucked up.  A big fucking chunk of his right cheek was missing.  You could also see clearly, inside of his mouth through a large and gaping bloody hole.  The second thing that Danny noticed that something was very wrong, was the fact that the poor fucker was chewing on a live, 
squealing and squirming large rat.

"Dale, what happened to your face?"

Danny got closer to Kevin, while keeping his gun aimed at the strange man.

"Kev?  You, know this guy?"

Kevin nodded and took out his two-way radio.

"Well, kinda.  I know that his name is Dale Roberts and that he's homeless and harmless crackhead.  He tends to hang around the dumpster by the back of the bar.  But, look at him now.  What the hell, man?  What do you think happened to him?"

The man Kevin was speaking of, very slowly stood up.  He looked at them both, dropped the rat he'd been chewing(which was still moving, by the way) and started slowly shuffling towards them.

Danny took a step back, while keeping his gun pointing at the homeless bum.

"I don't know, Kev.  But, maybe this poor fucker is on bath salts.  I've heard that toxic shit causes some scary and fucked up side effects."

Kevin looked at his best friend and then at the homeless crackhead.

"You mean, mephedrone?"

Danny shrugged his shoulders.

"I don't fucking know?  Is that what that shit's called?"

Kevin nodded his head, yes.

"Yeah, you might be right.  I've heard some side effects are short-term memory loss, hallucinations, delusions and even erratic behaviour."

Kevin pressed the two-way radio that was clipped on his shoulder and called in the situation.

"Colin, do you copy?"

The cold rain was coming down hard and they were getting drenched.  The winds were only getting stronger and the two-way radio answered with static.

"Colin!  This is Kevin
Walsh, over.  We have an emergency at the docks.  Do, you copy?  Over!"


Just, fucking static!

Kevin cursed under his breath.

"Dan, try your radio.  See, if you can get a hold of that old fuck.  He's never around when you fucking need him!"

But, as Danny was about to reach for his radio, the man lunged at him at lighting speed.  Kevin shouted something, as Danny dropped his radio and was tackled backwards.



Kaden went down the ravine, first.  Once he was at the bottom, he waved at us to join him.

"All clear!  Come on, down."

Apparently, Teddy didn't have to be told twice and practically shoved me aside, as he ran down the ravine.  I was about to head down myself, but I wanted to look at my school one last time.  

At the moment, the school's metal fence was holding back about twenty snarling, bloody and growling students.  More and more students arrived by the minute.
Some of those students had been my friends, others just schoolmates.  But, in the end they were all someone's much loved son or daughter.  

Now, these former students were frantically trying to climb over the fence and reach out to me.  They either wanted to bite me, eat me, tear me apart or all of the above.  Their faces, hands and other parts of their bodies had
horrible wounds, scratches, cuts and bite marks.  

tear fell from my eye and my heart went out them.  

didn't deserve this.  

No one, did.

I stood there frozen on the spot, as a cold breeze started to pick up.  I looked up at the sky and dark grey clouds were coming in from the north.  The bare branches on the trees started swaying and creaking in the wind.

"Kell!  What, the hell are you waiting for?  Get your ass down here, now!"

I turned my head and looked down the ravine.  

Kade was frantically waving his arms and trying to get my attention.  But, it was the police cars, fire trucks, ambulance sirens and loud screams coming from all directions that snapped me out my trance.  As I looked down, Kade was running up the ravine, towards me and looking pissed.

I stood stiff like a statue, as Kade grabbed me by my shoulders and shook me hard

"Kell, we gotta go!  Are you listening to me?  Kell, snap out of it!"

As Kade shook me, tears started running down my cheeks.

"Those were our friends and schoolmates, Kade.  We left them and now, they're all..."

I started crying and sobbing uncontrollably, as Kade gently hugged me and pressed our foreheads together.

"Kell, I need you to keep it together.  Can you do that for me, please?  We need to get out of here.  C'on..."

I nodded and fought back a sob.  

Kade smiled at me, wiped away my tears and kissed me on the lips.

I was stunned!  

Speechless, actually.

Kade kissed me!  

Thomas Kaden Barron, just kissed me!

As Kade pulled away from me, he smiled shyly and blushed.  I was about to say something, when we heard Teddy hollering down below.  

"Kade, c'on man.  We need to go!  It's not fucking safe, down here."

Kade looked at Teddy from the top of the ravine and nodded.  He then gently took a hold of my right hand and we descended down the ravine together.  

Once at the bottom, Teddy looked confused and upset.  He kept looking back and forth between Kade and me.  Kade on the other hand, didn't seem to care or pay any attention.  Teddy was looking pretty sour and once again, practically shoved me aside as he spoke to Kade.

"Now, what?  We can't stay here, bro."  

Kade sighed, frowned and nodded his head.

"I know.  But, where are we going to go?  We can't go to my house, it's all the way across fucking town."

Teddy sighed as well.

"Yeah, so is mine.  Fuck!"

Kade closed his eyes and put his hands behind his head.

"I left my car in the parking lot and there's no way to go back and get it.  The whole place is crawling with those things."

Those things...

Those things.

Those things had been human just a few minutes ago.

Teddy groaned, as he looked to the top of the ravine nervously.

"Fuck!  That's fucking great!  Now, what do we do?  We're sitting ducks down here, Kade!"

Kade sighed.

"Relax, the fuck down Teddy!  
I'm thinking here.  Give me a fucking minute, will ya!"

I squeezed Kade's right hand to get his attention.

"Kade, what about my house?  We can go there.

Kade turned to look at me.

"I live just a few blocks from here, remember?
 It shouldn't take us that long to get there."

Kade was nodding his head silently, as he looked at me and then Teddy.

"Shit, that's right!  Kell's home is just a few blocks away."

I smiled and nodded my head.  

Kade had been to my home once.  And that had been a long time ago, before things got complicated between us.  Teddy's sourpuss face said it all, he wasn't at all, pleased.  Kade looked down and towards the ground, as he started kicking leaves and debris around.

"Look for anything that we can use as a weapon.  We need to be ready and protect ourselves at any moment."

Teddy and I looked at each other, nodded and started looking around the ground.  Kade was the first to find something, it was a log.  He picked it up, hefted it between his hands and swung it around a couple of times.

"Yeah, this will do nicely.  A nice long, big and thick log."

Kade smiled and winked at me, as he said that.  I simply shook my head and rolled my eyes.  I came across a large and pointy rock that was twice the size of my hand.

"What about this?"

Kade, pursed his lips.  

I know my rock wasn't a good weapon, as his "long, big and thick log".  But, c' was better than nothing.

He gave me a smile and nodded.

"Yeah, that's good Kell.  You've still got a good right arm, right?"

I gave Kade a confused look.

"Umm, what?"

Kaden smiled once again.

"I was just thinking about our little league days, remember?  You had a good pitching arm, that's all."

I smiled as well.  

"Oh, yeah..."

Those happy and carefree days were long gone now.  


Teddy rushed towards Kaden and he had a huge grin on his face.

"Hey, look at what I found!  How's this, for fucking luck?"

Kade and I were very impressed.  

Teddy was holding a baseball bat in his hands.  It was dirty, covered in wet leaves, mud and branches, but still in good condition.

"I guess someone threw it down here from school."

Kade and I nodded, while Teddy took a few practice swings in the air.  

Kade looked up the ravine and moved closer to Teddy and me.

"Allright, listen up.  This is what we're going to do."

Teddy and I looked at each other and listened to Kade.

"We're going to follow the ravine, as far as it will take us.  Hopefully, a good and safe distance.  I'm hoping at least a couple of blocks."

Teddy and I, nodded silently.

"This ravine leads into MacArthur Park, right Kell?"

I nodded, as Teddy stared at me.

"Yes, it does.  It should take us about 20 minutes, walking distance to get there."

Kade looked up the ravine, as a strong current of wind engulfed us and stirred the dirt and leaves on the ground.

"Allright, we'll head out in single file.  I'll take the lead, Kell will be in the middle and Teddy will watch our six."

I looked at Kade confusedly.

"Umm, our six?"

Teddy let out a loud sigh and rolled his eyes.

"Oh, sorry Kell.  Watch my six, is a military reference.  It basically means, watching one's back.  So, Teddy will be watching our butts."

I nodded my head.

"Oh, o.k.  Wait a second, though.  When were you in the military?"

Teddy grumbled and let out a louder, longer groan and sigh.

"C'on, Kell.  We need to get going."

Kade smiled, as he gently stroked my right cheek and motioned for Teddy and I to follow him.

"Now, remember guys.  No talking, whisper if you have to.  Above all else, keep your eyes open, be alert and watch your step."

Teddy and I, nodded.

We started walking single file through the ravine.  As I walked quietly behind Kade, I felt a strong attraction towards him.  It was a strange feeling, like the Kade that I had known as a child was now, all grown up.  Walking ahead of me, stood a confident and in charge, 
young alpha male.  

Kade had appointed himself our leader and he was showing confidence, patience
, strength and intelligence.  I know this is the wrong place and the wrong time for this, but I was very much turned on by this new Kade.

It was hard to ignore the many changes that I saw in Kade.  I mean, both physical and personality wise.  I was really curious and proud of him.  And what about that kiss?  What was that all about?  And Teddy had seen us kissing and Kade didn't seem to care, be ashamed or even concerned.

As we silently walked through the ravine, above us on the street, we could hear cars racing past us.  There were also the sound of footsteps of people running. Whenever Kade heard a noise, he would stop, kneel and raise his left arm in a closed fist.  Which, I guess meant, stop?  I'm not quite sure?  

But, then very sofly and in a low voice, he whispered.


Ahh, ok.  Now, I get what that sign means.  

But, how does he know this?  I know that we haven't seen or talked in almost two years.  But, he's really gone through a change and I think, for the best.

From above, if anyone was walking or running on the sidewalk and bothered to look down the ravine, they would most likely see us.  W
e didn't have great cover, there was only light brush, dry vines, some fallen logs and debris.  It was only the second week in May, afterall.  So, spring vegetation had just recently started blooming.  

Now, if it would have been summer, you wouldn't be able to see down the ravine, period.  The whole place would be
overgrown and dense with vegetation.  But, now?  

Well, if one looked hard enough, they would see three highschool kids trying to pass inconspicuously through the little brush cover they had.
 It took us a while, but we finally reached the end of the ravine.

Kaden put his index finger over his plump red lips and shushed us.

"Shhhh.  Keep your eyes open, be quiet and stay here.  I'll go up first and check things out."

I looked at Kade and nodded.

As Kade started climbing, he pointed towards the top of the ravine.

"When you start climbing, watch your step.  Be on the lookout for loose rocks, twigs and branches.  We need to move quickly, but also very quietly."

Again, Teddy and I nodded.

Kade climbed the ravine with the agility and grace of a feral cat.  He was fast, agile and especially, quiet.  Every so often, he would stop, look around, tilt his head sideways and listen.  

I looked around the ravine and thought the same thing.

It was quiet.

Way, too quiet...

There were no birds chirping, or flying overhead or even perched on branches.  I also couldn't hear any other animals rustling about.  

That was weird?

The ravine is an almost untouched and pristine ecosystem.  There should have been, at least some small animals moving around here.  I used to play down here as a kid(well, not this particular ravine.  But, the one closer to home) and down here, you'd at least see squirrels jumping from tree to tree, or gathering acorns for the winter, racoons trying to get into the garbage and recycling bins in the park, and if you're really lucky, deer grazing on the grass, leaves or shrubs.  

But, today...


It was as if anything living in the ravine knew about the chaos going on outside in the world.  Animals tend to have a sixth sense about these things, and perhaps they had sensed what was coming and decided to stay in the safety and confort of their burrows or nests.  

Teddy at the moment, was sweating buckets in his football gear and looked really nervous.  His eyes, like mine were glued on Kade, who was nearing the top of the ravine.  As Kade got to the top, he gave us the thumbs up.  I smiled and waved at him.  

Kade looked down towards us one more time and motioned with his right hand to wait.  He then disappeared from view and my heart almost jumped out of my throat.  

Oh, my God!  

Where, the hell is he going?  

Is he insane?

I wanted to shout out to Kade.  

Kade, don't leave us!

But, my mouth was dry, I was scared and couldn't get anything out.  Teddy must have sensed my anxiety and uneasiness, because he looked at me and gave me a nervous smile.

"He's gonna come back.  He's just checking things out, relax."

I nodded and also managed a nervous smile.  But, the honest to God truth was that my stomach was all in knots.  I instantly and silently prayed for God to watch over Kade.  

Please, dear lord!  

Don't, let anything happen to Kade.  

He just came back into my life and I can't lose him, now.

I don't know how many seconds or minutes had gone by.  But, it had been way too long and I was really getting worried.  I was about to say something to Teddy, when we saw Kade wave at us from the top of the ravine and motioning us to join him.  

I blew a huge sigh of relief, gave silent thanks to God and all the angels in heaven and went up the ravine first.  Teddy followed closely behind me.

As I got to the top, Kade extented his right hand and pulled me up.  As I dusted and cleaned myself up, I peeked from behind the bushes and saw that we were now in
MacArthur Park.  

By now, it was past 4 p.m. and normally around this time, there'd be a few people in the park.  Mostly moms or nannies with strollers, a few joggers, some dog walkers and the occasional douchy cyclist racing through the park.  But, now the park was dead quiet and completely deserted.

Kade was distracted as he scanned the park.  I gently grabbed his right hand and tugged at it.

"You scared me for a moment, down there."

Kaden turned around and looked at me all confused.

"Huh?  Oh,
sorry Kell.  I guess I should have told you.  But, I needed to do a quick survey of the area before you guys came up.  We don't have a lot of time to waste and we need to move fast.  By the looks of those dark clouds, a storm is going to hit us soon and I want to make it to your home before it does."

I didn't want to come off, as being a little pansy.  But, Kade really did give Teddy and I, a good scare.  

I faked a smile, as Kade caressed my right cheek.

"Hey, listen to me.  I am never going to leave you, again.  And I promise that I won't let anything happen to you, or to us."

At that moment Teddy came up the ravine, huffing, puffing and sweating up a storm.

"Wassup, bitches!  Whatta, I miss?"

I sighed and rolled my eyes, as Kaden cleared his throat.

"Well, the good news is that the park looks empty.  But, just to be safe, we'll move quickly and quietly.  You guys see that big oak tree over there?"

Teddy and I, looked over Kade's shoulder and nodded.

"We're going to run to that tree and use it for cover."

Teddy and I, looked at each other in silence.

"We'll stick to the same routine that we've been doing, so far.  I'll go first and if the coast is clear, then I'll wave for Kell to follow.  Teddy, you'll be close on his ass."

Teddy snickered, as Kade took off running towards the tree.  

I pursed my lips, held my tongue and glared at Teddy.  Kade had taken cover behind the large oak tree and was quickly looking around.  Once the coast was clear, he motioned for me to come over.

Teddy slapped my butt and pushed me forward.

"You're up, buttercup.  Now, don't trip and fall."

I tightned my fists and really wanted to sock Teddy in his stupid face.  But, I kept telling myself not to let him get to me.  Teddy is an ass.  So, I didn't acknowledge him and sprinted across the grass.  

As we moved silently through the park, we managed to perfect this technique pretty well.  Kade moved with great stealth and was our lookout.  We covered a large portion of the park and so far, we hadn't ran into any problems, yet.  

My home was practically around the corner.  

Practically, being the key word.  

All we had to do was to dash out of the park and run across a busy and high traffic street.  Then sprint down Maple Avenue, make a left at the first stop sign and my home was just across the street.  That wasn't so bad, right?  

It was doable...

But, ofcourse things do always go as planned.  And Teddy, ofcourse was the first to spot it.

Across the small creek that ran along MacArthur park, a heavily battered police vehicle, lay at the bottom of the hill.  
It looked like the police cruiser had gotten into a terrible accident.  

The impact of the crash, must have thrown the car over the metal railing that bordered the park and then the cruiser crashed down the hill.  The front of the car was heavily smashed and all the windows were broken.  The crushed police car resembled an accordion, actually.  

I looked at Kaden, who was looking at me and we both thought the same thing.  

There was no way, anyone could have survived that crash.

Kade motioned for us to follow him, but Teddy stepped forward and grabbed Kade's left arm.

"Bro?  We're not gonna go and check it out?"

Kade looked at Teddy and then at the police car.

"Teddy, we don't have time.  We've been lucky so far, but listen to that..."

Kade was pointing across the creek and towards the direction of the street that's just outside the park.  

I could hear it as well.

It was the sound of police sirens, firetrucks and EMS vehicles racing up and down the street.  In fact, it sounded like the world had exploded in chaos and loud noise. I could hear cars, buses and trucks honking loudly up and down the street.  And I swear that in the far off distance, I could also hear the faint sounds of gun shots and screams, as well.

Teddy sighed, yet still held tight to Kade's arm.

"Dude, seriously?  We're, not going to go?"

Teddy, finally let go of Kade's arm and started walking towards the creek.

"Fine, man!  If you're not gonna go, then I will."

Kade grabbed Teddy's football jersey and yanked him backwards.  Teddy managed to shake Kade off and stood facing him, defiantly.

"Hey, watch it!  I'm not trying to bust your balls, bro.  But, there might be guns in that fucking car and we need them!"

Kade took another look at the police cruiser and sighed.

"Kade, c'on man!  We can't pass this shit up.  You, yourself said that we need weapons."

That was probably the smartest thing, that I've heard Teddy say all day.  And he might be right, afterall the police do carry heavy artillery, nowadays.

Kade let out a groan and nodded his head.

"Allright, allright.  Fuck, sakes!  We'll all go, together and we'll make this quick!"

Oh, great!  

Include me on all this insanity.  

Now, I'll also have to cross the damm creek and that water is going to be super cold.

Kade glanced around the park one more time, before he motioned us to follow him into the creek.  The park was still dead quiet and strangely clear.  It seemed like all the commotion and pandemonium was happening outside the park gates.

"Watch where you step, guys.  These rocks are going to be covered in algae and very slippery."

I rolled my eyes and stepped into the water.  

Holy, Jesus!  

The water is freezing cold!

Kade and I, were only wearing our black leather loafers and they just soaked up the water like a damm sponge.  At least Teddy was probably doing a little bit better, since he was wearing his thick football pants and cleats.  

At its deepest, the creek reached up to our knees.  We had a few close calls, as we slipped on algae covered rocks, but none of us fell on the icy water and we made it safely across.

On this side of the creek, we could clearly see the extense of the damage on the police car.  The vehicle was completely smashed on the drivers side and the impact had been so severe, that even the front left tire had come off.

As I was scraping some foul smelling algae from the bottom of my ruined leather shoes, I saw Kade signal us.

"Everyone, freeze!  I think there's someone inside the car."

My heart almost leapt out of my chest when Kell, yelled that.

"Oh, my God!  Do you think he's still alive?"  I stood shivering from head to toes, as I squealed that.

Kade shrugged his shoulders.

"I don't know, Kell.  I can't tell from here..."

Kade motioned for Teddy to go around the back of the police cruiser, while he cautiously went around the front.  I remained on my spot and was the lookout.  Teddy made a silent sign with his hands that the police officer was still buckled in his seat.  Kade, then very slowly approached the passenger's side window.

"Holy shit!  Teddy, get your ass over here.  This guy is still alive."

I literally jumped, when I heard Kade shout out loud, once again.  My nerves were tittering on the verge of having a meltdown.  I swear, I almost pissed my pants and had a heart attack on the spot.

I moved closer to the driver's side of the vehicle and looked in.  The seat on the driver's side was soaked in blood and...?  

What the hell was that?

Are those pieces of flesh and brain matter in what's left of the windshield?

Oh, dear God!  

I'm gonna trow up!

"Kell!  Get your ass over here and help us, now!"

I had to gag and supress the vomit that I felt coming on.  

I took a deep long breath and ran to Kade's side.

"Kell, give me a hand and see if you can untangle him.  Teddy, leave this for Kell and me.  Go and check the trunk and see if you can find anything useful for us to take.  Move!"

Teddy nodded and took off for the trunk of the car.  Kade was furiously trying to undo the car's seat buckle.

"Fucking piece of shit!  The fucking seat buckle is jammed!  Godammit!  Arrgghh, fuck!"

I tried to help Kade, but he was right.  The poor police officer was unfortunately stuck in his seat.

As I looked at the officer, he seemed young.  His face was bloodied and he had a few cuts and bruises.  His eyes were closed, but at least he was
breathing and moaning.  I was actually surprised that he wan't in a much worse condition, considering the car wreck.  

I guess seatbelts, do save lives.  

In his case, the buckle saved his life and he was also in one piece.  Unfortunately, his poor partner wasn't so lucky.

"Hey, Kade!  We've hit jackpot!"

Kade and I looked at each other and then towards the back of the car.

Teddy was holding a shotgun!

Teddy was waving a fucking shotgun in the air!   

I felt uneasy about this idiot holding such a dangerous weapon.

"We've, hit paydirt!  Looks like we got a two tasers, a first aid kit, reflective vests...

Kade stopped Teddy midsentence, as he was pulling, yanking and even punching the seat buckle.

"Teddy, listen!  See, if there's anything that we can use to cut through this fucking seat belt."

Teddy nodded.

The poor officer was bleeding pretty bad from a wound in his head.  So, I decided to go to the trunk and look for a first aid kit.

"Kade, I'm going to see if there's a first aid kit."

Kade nodded.

"Good idea, Kell.  See if you can find any bandages and gauze.  Maybe, you can clean his cuts and wrap his wounds."

Teddy was busy calling out everything he was finding in the trunk and throwing it on the grass.

"There's crime scene tape, flares, two batons, pepper spray, a small Ka-Bar knife..."

Kade ran to the back of the squad car and pushed Teddy aside.

"Give me the fucking knife!"

Kade snatched the knife from Teddy's hand and raced back to the front.  Teddy shook his head and dove back into the trunk.

"You're welcome, by the way.  So, rude..."

I ignored Teddy, saw the first aid kit, grabbed it and rushed back to the officer.  Kade had started slicing through the seat belt and in seconds, the poor officer was finally free.  I gave Kade a huge smile and he did the same.

"Teddy!  Is there anything back there that we can use to carry all that stuff?"

Teddy could be heard digging loudly through the trunk.

"I'm checking, give me a second."

More stuff was thrown on the grass.

"Hey, what about this?"

Teddy was holding 
a large black duffle bag in his hands.  

The duffle bag had Property of BPD inscribed in white bold letters.

"I'll put everything in here."

Kade nodded, as we both gently and very carefully started to pull the young officer from his seat.

"O.k, Kell.  We'll lay him on the ground and while you clean him up.  I'll check and see if he has any serious injuries."

I nodded and with shaking hands, did my best to help Kade.

"Kade, what if he needs a hospital?"

Kade sighed and didn't even look at me.

"One step at a time Kell..."

The officer weighed a ton!  

And By that I mean that his body was pure and solid muscle.  As we lay the officer on the ground, through the fabric, I could feel his firm and taut muscles.  Teddy soon joined us and opened the duffle bag in front of us.

"Kade, look at our fucking loot!  We've also got a 12 gauge shotgun and an AR-15 assault rifle.  Isn't this fucking awesome!"

Kade was checking the officer, as he took a quick look, smiled and nodded.

"You did great, Teddy.  But, now we have to decide what we're gonna do with this cop."

As I was cleaning the officer's wounds(which so far, only looked superficial) I looked at Kade in surprise.

"Wait, what do you mean?"

Kade locked eyes with Teddy and they seemed to be thinking the same thing.

"Kade?  What's going on?  You can't seriously be thinking of leaving this officer?"

Kade sighed.

"Look, Kell..."

I stood up and I couldn't believe what I was hearing.

"Kaden, no!  We are not leaving this poor man behind.  That's cruel, that's inhumane, that's barbaric!"

Kade shook his head and stood up facing me.

"Kell, please be rational.  This guy is very heavy and we can't carry him to your house.  If we try to take him, he's going to slow us down."

Teddy cleared his throat, walked over to Kade and stood next to him.

"Kade's right, man.  The guy is dead weight, no pun intended.  Besides, what if he turns into one of those things?"

I couldn't believe what I was hearing.  

I couldn't believe the garbage coming out of Kade.  

I'll say it again.  

Teddy is just a jerk.  But, Kade?

"Well, the two of you can do what you want.  But, I'm not leaving this man behind!"

Kade's face lost all colour.

"What are you saying, Kell?  What are you going to do?  Are you planning on staying with him?"

I looked at the poor unconscious officer and my eyes started to water.

"I'm not leaving him behind to die or to be..."

Kaden sighed and kicked the police car in anger.

"Fuck!  Fuck!  Goddammit!"

I had made my decision and I wasn't going to budge.

Kade's face was an angry and deep shade of red.  I had never seen him so pissed in my life.  But, I didn't care.  A man's life wasn't up for a debate.

Kade let out out a loud sigh.

"Fine!  That's, fucking fine."

opened his mouth and was about to say something.  But, Kade beat him to it.

"Shut the fuck up, Teddy!"

Kade's angry tone said it all.  Teddy simply shrugged his wide shoulders, rolled his eyes and leaned against the car.

"Allright, then.  Kell, can you shoot a gun?"

I looked at Kaden angrily.

"No!  Ofcourse not.  You know that."

Kaden nodded his head.

"Well, then I got news for you, Kell.  You're probably going to be doing that today and you're also going to be responsible for carrying that duffle bag.  I'll carry the officer on my shoulders and Teddy will be in the rear and watching our asses with the shotgun."

Teddy huffed, puffed and rolled his eyes.

"I don't want to hear it, Teddy.  So, load up the fucking shotgun and have it ready."

Teddy pursed his lips and looked angry.

"Kade, you can't mean that!  You can't carry this guy, all the..."

Kade marched up to Teddy and was inches away from his face.

"Teddy, we are fucking doing this.  So, I don't want to hear any more of your bullshit.  You're either with Kell and me, or you're out.  Now, pick!"

My mouth was hanging wide open.  

Teddy pursed his lips and angrily threw the duffle bag on the grass.  He ruffled through the bag, found the shells and loaded the shotgun.

Kade then faced us both.

"Now, pay attention.  This is how we'll be doing things."

Teddy and I got closer to Kade.

"Kell, here take this.  I found it on the officer while I was checking him."

Kade handed me a gun.  

"It's his 9mm Glock."

I took the gun in my hands and was surprised as to how heavy the gun was.  I mean, they always make it look so easy on tv shows and movies.  But, this ofcourse was real life.

I looked at the gun and sighed heavily.

"But, Kade...  I've never held a gun in my life.  I don't even know how to shoot."

Teddy scratched his head, sighed and stepped forward.

"Man up, dude!  What's to fucking know?  All you gotta do is point, aim and pull the trigger.  Just make sure the safety is off, when you shoot though."

I looked at the gun and saw the lock.

Kade put his right hand on my shoulder.

"Kell, all I want you to focus on, is to lead us to your home.  The gun is for precaution, shoot only if necessary."

Now, wait a minute.  

All this is happening too fast!

Way too fast!

"Kell, if anyone and I mean, anyone that is not human comes charging at you.  Then, you drop them.  Got it?"

I felt cold sweat running down my back.


Teddy walked over to me and cleared his throat.

"Look man, it's pretty simple.  When handling a gun, always keep it pointed downrange.  Keep the gun pointed down, the whole time the gun is in your hand.  Now, we're going to check if the gun is loaded."

Teddy moved closer to me, took the gun in his hands and showed me.  

"See, the gun is loaded.  Now, carefully pick up the gun and keep your finger outside the trigger guard.  Keep the finger extended straight and flat on the side of the guard."

I nodded.

"Hold the gun in the firing-ready position.  Then, steady the gun with your other hand and align both of your thumbs for support and accuracy.  Make sure that both thumbs are clear of the slide.  Remember, this will make the gun pop sharply backwards when the gun is fired.  

Now, stand in the proper firing stance.  Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and with the foot opposite your dominant hand about a step past the other foot. Lean forward and slightly with your knees bent and make sure that you're firmly balanced.  

Align the front sight with the rear sight and it will be best to aim by looking with your dominant eye and closing the other eye.  Then fix the gun on your target.  That's pretty much it.  Like I said, point and shoot man."

Teddy then patted me on the back.

"You got this, man.  You can do this!"

I looked at Kade all terrified.

"But, but..."

I'm not a gun lover.  Actually, I'm one of those few Americans that are against guns.  And holding and carrying a gun, just felt wrong for me.

Kade looked at me and saw my concern.

"Kell, just concentrate on where you're going.  Leave the shooting up to Teddy.  If you run into trouble, then use the gun."

Oh, my God!  

I'm not ready for this!

"Kell, just run as fast as you can and don't look back.  Remember, I'll be right behind you and Teddy has our backs."

I nodded.  

There really wasn't much more to say.  

We're really doing this!

I just hope that I don't have to use the gun, period.

Kade was looking at the officer and then his wristwatch.  The winds were picking up and the sun had been swallowed by dark and greyish clouds.

"O.k, we gotta move guys.  Now, I'll carry the officer across my shoulders.  This way his torso is fairly level and should help prevent further injuries.  His weight will be evenly distributed over my shoulders, and this will make it a little bit easier for me to carry him over a long distance."

Teddy nodded and I felt very unconfortable for forcing Kade do this.

"Allright, then.  On the count of three, I'm going to pick this guy up and we go.  Kell, remember that you're leading the way.  We follow you, so run and don't stop."

I nodded and felt cold sweat running down my back.  

Oh, my sweet lord!  

God, help us!

Kade walked over to Teddy and placed both hands on his shoulder.

"Teddy, I'm counting on you.  Any of those things get near us, or follows too closely, then you fucking drop 'em."

Teddy stood upright and nodded.

"Now, Kell.  I am going to be completely honest with you.  If for some reason, we run into trouble.  The two of you are my responsibility and come first."

I sighed and had an idea as to where this was going.

"I mean it, Kell.  If something happens along the way and it gets too dangerous.  I will drop and leave officer Bauer."

I looked at the officer, who layed on the grass and read the name on his tag.  

Nathan Bauer

I sighed and nodded.

"Allright, everyone knows what to do.  On the count of one, two, three..."

Kade kneeled, lifted the officer and put him across his shoulders.  

Thank-god, that Kade is in tip-top shape and has the muscles to be able to carry the officer's weight.  I just hope and pray that we can all make it to my house, unscathed, in one piece and safely.

We started crossing the creek and everything was fine.  As we were halfway across, and on the other side of the park, that's when I saw her.  

It was a young woman.  

She was probably in her mid-twenties and she was wearing a pink jogging suit.  She look a little bit disoriented, but she was slowly shuffling towards the creek and us.  


Kade looked up and stopped.

"Shit!  Don't do anything, Kell.  Stand down and be lookout."

Kade adjusted the officer on his shoulders and spoke to Teddy.

"Teddy, you're up.  I don't want anyone to know that we're here.  If any more of those things show up, we're fucked!  So, you're gonna have to take her down with the baseball bat."

Teddy looked over Kade's shoulder and nodded.

"No worries, bro.  I've got this."

The poor woman looked like she was having trouble walking and was badly injured.  Even from halfway across the creek, you could see that something wasn't right. She was dragging her left leg behind and her face, hair and jogging suit was covered in blood.

Teddy started walking towards her and as he got closer, he took a couple of practice swings in the air.  When she was near Teddy, she lunged into a fierce run with her arms and hands extended.

"Uuunnnnnhhhh." Was all that she managed to mutter.

Teddy, meanwhile took another practice swing and took a solid stance.

"Allright, you dead bitch!  Come and get it..."

I rolled my eyes and sighed.

As the woman got closer to Teddy, I could see more of her injuries.  She had a large scratch across her right cheek and she was also bleeding from a large wound on her neck.  And something must have happened to her left leg, because it was at an odd angle and she was dragging it behind.

When she was inches away from Teddy, I had to look away.  

I then heard a very loud crack and whack.



Teddy had knocked the woman down and she was face down on the grass.

"Fuck, yeah!"

Teddy shouted and gave Kade the thumbs up.  But, while Teddy was looking at us, he was also unaware that the woman was still crawling towards him.
 Kade and I, shouted in unison and at the top of our lungs.

"Teddy, watch out!"

Teddy looked down at the woman crawling towards him and managed to jump back.


"Shit!  Stay, the fuck down!  You dead, ugly bitch!"

Teddy was hitting the woman's head like a piņata with the baseball bat.  He must have hit her about five or six times.  Now, part of her skull was crushed and you could even see her brain.
"I think she's finally dead.  Whatta you think?"

Teddy got close to the woman and tapped her in the head with his football cleats.

I looked away and couldn't stomach to watch.  

Kade motioned me to move forward.

"Allright, let's get going.  Kell, you're up.  Let's, go!"

I started running towards the direction of the park's entrance.  

I would on occasion, look back just to make sure that Kade and Teddy were behind me and they were.  But damm, this duffle bag weighed a ton.  Then again, I wondered how poor Kade was doing carrying officer 

"Don't look back, Kell.  We're right behind you.  Just run!"

Oh, dear God!

As I got to the entrance to the park, I stopped dead on my tracks and couldn't believe my eyes.  

There were people running in all directions.  

Men, women, children...

The look on people's faces was of sheer terror, panic and confusion.  Some people screamed as they ran by.  Down the street and at the nearest intersection, I saw some people tackle bystanders and then rip them to bloody shreads.  The screams and cries were soul piercing and horrendous.  

It was a horrible sight!

Cars, trucks, buses, even police cars, were all racing up and down the street at unbelievable speeds.  But, the police cars weren't even stopping.  

Then, I heard Kade yell from behind.

"Kell, don't fucking stop!  Go, run!"

I looked back at him and tried to tell him...

"But, the cars..."

The traffic wasn't slowing down.  The cars weren't stopping!

How the hell are we going to cross the damm street?

"Kell, what the fuck?  Just, fucking go!"

I looked back and saw that Kade was close behind me.  

I sighed, prayed silently and ran across the street.

I ran and didn't look back.

I kept repeating outloud and to myself.

"Don't look back!  Don't look back!  Run, just run.  They're right behind you!"

And so, I ran for it.  

I could heard cars honking at me, while other vehicles just screeched loudly.  

I prayed that Kade and Teddy were fine.  And as I jumped onto the sidewalk, I blew a huge sigh of relief.  

I made it safely across the street!

I looked back and saw that Kade and Teddy were stuck in the middle of the street waiting for an opening in the heavy traffic.  Then in the blink of the eye, a school bus went racing by with kids screaming inside.  That was the moment that Kade and Teddy needed, as an opening became available and they ran for it.  

Kade's face was red and every muscle in his face and neck was pulled back.  The poor guy was sweating buckets, but holding tightly to officer 
Teddy was right next to Kade and looking in all directions.

Down the street, the school bus crashed into a streetlight.  Now, the bus was blocking the intersection and there was more loud honking, then other car crashes and even more screams.

"Kell, what the hell are you waiting for?  I'm going to kick your ass!  Run, go!"

I turned around, picked up the duffle bag and started running towards my street.  

As I reached the entrance to Maple Avenue, it was quiet and seemed deserted.

I ran past my neighbours homes and I could hear stuff crashing inside and loud screams in others.  I tried to ignore the mayhem around me and every once in a while, I would do a quick check to make sure that Kade and Teddy were right behind me.  And they were!  

Kade's face was pretty red and sweaty, but he didn't call out for me to stop and take a break.

We were very close to reaching my house.  

Just a few more blocks and we'd be safe.  

But, as I got near the end of the block, I saw her.


It was a little girl.

This child couldn't be more than 5 or 6 years.  She was alone, seemed lost and standing by a large Maple tree.  In her right hand, she was holding a Rageddy Ann doll and sucking her thumb from her left hand.  

I stopped for a second and took a deep breath.  

But, she must have sensed the commotion and as she raised her head, she saw me and started shuffling towards me.

I felt my heart literally sank within me.

"Kell, shoot her!"

I shook my head sideways.  

I couldn't do it.

I knew that Kade and Teddy weren't that far behind me.

"Kell!  You've got to shoot her!"

Kaden was yelling at the top of his lungs.  But, I couldn't do it.  

I couldn't shoot this innocent child.

I had never seen this child in my neighbourhood, though.  She was wearing red pyjamas and looked very sweet.  But, as she got closer, I noticed that the colour of her pyjamas was actually white.

The red was blood.

As she was starting to get close, she stopped sucking her thumb and dropped her doll on the sidewalk.  That's when I noticed that her thumb was actually gone.  She had chewed it off(or someone had chewed it off) and all you could see was bone and a bloody stump.

I looked away in shock and disgust!

"Kell!  Fucking, shoot her!  Or, I swear to God that I'll drop this cop!"

She was just a little girl.

She had been someone's little angel.

I started crying and sobbing.


I raised the gun, pulled the trigger and shot her.  

The bullet hit her, right in the head.  

It had been a clean shot.

My head was pounding from the sound of the gun firing and everything moved in slow motion.  As she fell to the ground with a large thud, I then felt Kade standing next to me.

"C'on, Kell.  We can't stop.  You had to do it.  Now, please lead the way."

I looked at Kade, nodded and we crossed the street.  

We were close to my home, literally just around the corner.  

But, then I heard Teddy yell out.

"Guys, we've got company!  There's three guys behind us.  They're at the entrance to the street and they're moving fast!"

Kade and I looked back and Teddy was correct.

"Stand down, Teddy!  We can't risk more of those things hearing gunshots and heading this way."

There were three men at the entrance of
Maple Avenue and they seemed to be running towards us.

I ran towards my house, but as I got to the intersection, I saw something ahead.  I quickly jumped back and motioned for Kade and Teddy to move back.  

We were hiding behind 
Mrs.Hendrick's Mexican orange blossoms hedges.

What, Kell?  What's wrong?"

Kade was behind me and breathing hard behind my neck.  I put my index finger to my lips and pointed towards my house.  

Standing practically in front of my home, was a USPS man.

At a first glance, he seemed fine.  However, when he turned sideways, you could see his injuries.

It was a disgusting sight!

The left side of his face was missing.  

I mean, literally missing!  

There was no skin, no eye, just bone.  He seemed dazed as he was looked around the street.  He would look at the mail that he was holding in his bloody hands and  the
scattered mail on the sidewalk.

Kade sighed and nodded for Teddy to get closer.

"Teddy, you're up!  You gotta take out the mailman standing in front of is Kell's house.  Do it quickly and quietly."

Teddy peeked over the hedges.

"Why, can't I just shoot him?"

I looked at Kade and Teddy had a point.

Kade looked exhausted, as he tried to balance officer
Bauer on his back.  He then turned around and pointed to the entrance of Maple Avenue.

"That's why..."  

Teddy had said that there were three guys were behind us.  Actually, there were now a total of six of those things and moving fast towards us.  It was four men and two women, who were grunting and running towards us.

"I don't want those guys to know where we're going.  Besides, we have to save the ammo."

Teddy nodded, gave me his shotgun and took the baseball bat out of the duffel bag.  Once the bat was in his hands, he started walking towards the 
USPS guy.  

At first the poor guy, hadn't seen Teddy.  But, as Teddy crossed the street and took some swings in the air, the postal worker looked up and started shuffling, slowly towards Teddy.

"Allright, Kell.  Have your keys, ready.  Once Teddy takes down this guy, we'll make a run for your house."

I checked my right pocket and felt the keys.  

Oh, Thank-God!  

That's a relief!

I got my keys.

Teddy took a few swings in the air and then advanced towards the mailman.

Whack!  whack!  whack!

The USPS guy fell to the ground and stopped moving.  

I then heard officer
Bauer, mumble something incoherently.  I really couldn't understand what the officer was saying.  

Kade saw me looking at the officer.

"Yeah, I have no fucking idea what he's saying.  He's been mumbling and going into fits, since we left the park.  Man, this guy weighs a fucking ton!"

Teddy then waved at us to join him.  

As we ran across the street, I had the house keys in my hand.  

I practically jumped over the postal worker and didn't want to see the damage that Teddy had done on him.  I ran to the front door and fumbled with the keys in my hand.  I almost dropped the keys for the second time as my hands were all sweaty.  Teddy was looking at me and practically breathing down my neck, which made me even more nervous.

"C'on, man!  Isn't this your fucking house?  What the hell is taking you so long?  Those fucking things are just a few steps behind."

I sighed and rolled my eyes.

"Will you give me some space, please!  And shut up already, Teddy!"

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Kade smile.  Teddy rolled his eyes and took a step back.

I let out a huge sigh of relief, when I finally got the front door opened.  Kade went in first with officer Bauer and Teddy was right on his heels.  

I had just closed and locked the front door, when I saw the first three men came into the view.  All three were soaked in blood and looking wildly around the street, while standing by
Mrs.Hendrick's hedges.  

I leaned against the door and gave silent thanks.

Thank-you, Lord!

We're, safe.

For now...

To be continued!