Word Count: 970
My hand trembled as I sorted through the keys, looking for one that might fit the lock that stood between me and the PA I was going to find. Something made me pause. I turned back to the room and looked around for something I could use as a weapon. Nothing. There was nothing. I s'pose they wanted to keep my room free of weapons in case I flipped out. Deep breaths, Cancer. Deep breaths. Just go outside. You'll be okay as long as you keep moving and don't fuck around like they do in those stupid movies.
Following my own advice, I fumbled through the keys until I found the right one and let myself out as quietly as I could. I mean, there's a balance between being quick and careful, and being quick and stupid. Right?
The smell outside my room was unbelievable. The sickly sweet smell of decay flooded my senses and I puked again. Not that there was much left in there to puke up.
Slowly, slowly, on unsteady feet, I made my way forwards. There were bodies piled up on the floor and any one of them could've woken up if I made a noise. It wasn't the bodies that bothered me, it was not knowing which ones were really dead. I'd killed more than my fair share of people over the years, blood and guts and death were familiar friends to me. But this was just... I dunno what it was. To find yourself in a place that was supposed to be safe, now full of dead and not dead bodies... it's beyond words. I'm pretty hard to scare, at least I like to think so, but walking through those corridors with blood all over everything, bodies or bits of bodies kicked to the sides. Soldiers lying on the floor covered in bite marks, with bullet holes in their heads...
What was once white was now stained with the dark browny red of old blood. Where it had been blindingly bright was now dark and shadowed. Passing one of the wards I'd been on, I saw a person shuffling around awkwardly, something in one of their hands. I think it was a chunk of someone's flesh. I couldn't really see, and I was hardly going to stick around there.
This was worse than the movies or TV shows that had zombies in. Not just because it was real and it was happening to me... it was the sensory overload, the fact it felt so unreal. I had no idea if Rayn was okay. That thought was hard to keep out of my head.
Somehow, though, the thought of looking for Rayn was what got me out of there. He was like my brother, and if something bad happened to him because I was being too much of a pussy to get out of here and go find him, that was on me.
I got lucky, I think, I didn't have to fight anything more than a couple locks to get out of there. I stumbled out into the fresh air, welcoming the hot air over the stench I'd left inside.
The military protection around the hospital had been decimated, but there were plenty of guns lying around. I'd never been that bothered about what kind of gun was what, as long as it killed who I pointed it at. I slung a few of the machine guns with shoulder straps across myself, looted a bag from one of the soldiers with a bullet hole in her head and started picking up as much ammo as I could carry. There were a couple hand guns to be grabbed too, so they went in the bag, and one went in my pocket. I didn't wanna be sticking around there too long, though, so once I'd grabbed all I could from near the entrance, I scarpered.
My first stop was the motel room. There was no one there. A dead receptionist was slumped over the desk, but she didn't move as I snuck in behind her to get my room key off the wall.
The room was near enough empty when I got in there. Just my bag sat on the end of my bed, my knife and my cell phone beside it. I turned my phone on to find a voice mail on it. From Rayn.
“Hey man, I hope you get this message. We’ve all heard rumors about what’s been going on in those hospitals. You better not be dead, okay?” He sounded like he was trying not to cry. He always was a bit of a wuss, the first to cry, the first to run away and hide. “I mean it. I’ve saved you some gear, what I could anyway. The junkies went insane when they found out the world was ending,” he laughed at that, “I’d have rather faced the zombies. Listen, me and Phil are heading for the west coast. We’re gonna try and get on a boat to somewhere, maybe the middle of the ocean, or some desert island somewhere, I dunno. Anything is better than staying here and waiting for the worst to happen. I’m sorry we can’t hang around and wait for you to get out – for all we know, you’re already dead. Don’t take it personally, okay? I love you, Luca. Stay safe, okay? Try and find us?”
I wasn’t even mad he’d used my real name, and when I usually would’ve insulted him for telling me he loved me, I found myself sinking down into a crouch and screaming at the floor. How could life have done this to me? Or to him? He’d had nothing but shit from his life, and now the world had fucking ended and I couldn’t do anything to help him.