My Money's On the Big One: Miles, Alive and Trapped


After the Olympians had been pushed back into containment, I had waited to meet Nate at the food court, as promised. The rest of that day was fairly normal. After dinner, I headed down to the old night club, which had been transformed into a "fight club" - people would enter a cage with one of the infected, and they wouldn't be let out until the infected was completely dead. If the infected person wasn't killed...well, then the human competitor never came out at all. Unfortunately, the volunteers weren't aware that this place was any more than the generally decent bar it acted as during the daytime. I was happy to use this fact as leverage in a business dealing with the owner of the place, who gave me as many specimens as I needed - as long as I had placed a bet that evening. Usually, I could blackmail him into just giving me one of the infected for free, but some nights - like tonight - that just wouldn't happen.

"We've warned you before, doctor - or whatever your title is," the greasy little man said. His blue eyes glittered with greed as he continued, "place your bet, stay to see the end result, maybe buy yourself a drink or three. Then we'll discuss business."

"You know I could go to the volunteers any time and tell -" Oh, forget it. It was useless. May as well just place a bet, grab a drink and have a seat.

I placed a bet on the largest infected person lined up in the stables. His face expressed the kind of raging, voracious fury that should guarantee him a win.

When it was his turn to compete, the brute marched into the cage, teeth bared, and locked his eyes of the gate through which his opponent would soon enter. He briefly looked around the room at all the cheering and shouting spectators, then stared once more at the gate. When the fight manager unlocked the gate, the zombie stepped forward menacingly. When the gate began to swing open, the creature burst into a flurry of motion. He rammed into the fight manager and knocked the man down, then grabbed the competitor standing directly behind the manager and took a chunk out of his neck. The next thing I knew, there were three people on the ground by the cage with bites taken out of them, and one infected rushing about madly, biting and clawing as he went.

I cursed, fumbling at my belt for the pistol which I carried there most times, and then remembered - all weapons were temporarily confiscated while you were in the bar. That meant a club packed with unarmed people, along with at least one infected that didn't need weapons to be armed.

Soon, the club owner walked out of his office in the back of the bar, carrying a shotgun. He fired one shot into the infected escapee's chest followed by one to the head, then turned and shot the three people that had been bitten in the head, execution-style.

I leaned back against the wall, hands to my temples, and collapsed to the floor. Everyone else was laughing hysterically at what a grand show that had been, and four people lay dead. I was pretty lucky I wasn't one of them, having been just a few feet away from the cage, sitting in a booth against the wall.

In his haste to deal with the most immediate threats, the owner had forgotten one curcial fact: the cage door was still wide-open, and there was no fight manager left alive to close it up. Soon, an ear-splitting shriek silenced everyone in the bar, and three more infected came barreling out of the stables. For the first second, many thought they were trapped inside and just laughed; it soon became apparent that they were not stuck inside the cage.

Soon, nine more people lay on the ground, clutching their wounds, including the only armed individual in the place - the owner.

This had gone on long enough. I ran into the late owner's office and closed the door, barring it from the inside with anything I could find, then took an ancient-looking walkee-talkee from my belt and made contact with the volunteers.

"Hello? Yes, this is Miles. Doctor Miles, the one that lives in the apartments - look, it doesn't matter who I am. I'm down at the bar in the eastern section, and we have a situation. I'm trapped in the owner's office. The owner is dead. There are three infected loose and running rampant, and at least ten people bitten. We need support immediately..."

The report continued for a short time later, and when I was finished conversing with the volunteer, I sat down on the floor and waited. Nothing else I could do.

The End

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