Oliver Mitchell lay there in his double bed exhausted, staring at the blackened damp celling. After last night he and his wife had gotten into a huge argument over her treatment of the others yet as most of their arguments went this way, the fury turned to an intense passion after a long session of love making they fell asleep on top of each other.
Oliver expected his wife to be in a relaxed and loved up mood that morning, yet as he went to put one of his large arms around her, he could see that she was already sat up in bed an angry look on her face.
"C'mon hon" Oliver murmured knowing he was going no where sure enough his wife pushed his loving arm away.
"Not now" she snapped.
Oliver lay back down, and continued to stare at the celling, when the silence grew too heavy he finally asked. "What's a matter Steph?"
She had been awaiting this question as she answered briskly.
"Everyone here, I've been up hours worrying about what they could do to Stan, if, if..." she got no further. "They all seem fine" Oliver said on instinct yet his words rang hollow and he knew it.
"Really?" Stephanie said cocking an eyebrow upwards as Oliver shrunk in her glare, she turned away from him and ploughed on "That Heather's a nasty piece of work, that Spanish Guy never takes off his mask so there's something not right with him and Mariam murdered a woman to get here! Delilah's too quiet, Quincey's an idiot plain and simple, what if he gets Stanley involved in one of his stupid games? and..."
"Stan's not that stupid, his a bright lad and we both know it from the amount of times his pranked us" Oliver reassured her.
"But his a growing lad, he'll want to take risks" Stephanie told him.
"Hell, he does turn fourteen next week". Oliver noted after a short pause in which he thought about his son, Stephanie nodded at his words "But I'm head of this little group Steph, I can watch over Stan and the other's will warm up eventually"
"I hope" was all she could say before she smiled lightly "You might be right about them, but there's one person, (her expression changed after this) who we both know should be kicked out if given the chance".
"Steph" Oliver warned. "If we kick that man out you know we kill him, that's too radical!" He shouted. "We both know Camden's mad! That man is seeing people in his head! He must be a schizophrenic! Those people are dangerous!" she shouted.
"He might just have been through a lot of trauma he seems like a quiet guy you never know" Oliver argued.
"We can't afford to take the risk, if he does something..." she began.
"He won't and what do you want me to do!? Chuck him down the staircase, right now!" Oliver bellowed.
"I want you to keep a close eye on him, make sure he does nothing funny around Stan, this is our son were talking about..."
"I know! I know! But..." Oliver seemed to deflate as his words dried up on his tongue as he finally sighed out "Fine, I'll keep an eye on him"
Stephanie smiled, as she fell back onto the bed.
"Thank you" she said.
Oliver beamed back at her, before lifting the blanket of himself, slowly standing he agreed it was time for a clothing change and too become a more firm leader. He had his doubts in his mind, which he cast away while floating leaves in a pond yet they always returned, slowly but surely.
He couldn't buckle, not now.
Yet as much as it seemed Stephanie had nagged him to it, there was something Oliver didn't like about Camden either.
"... He looks like a potato"
"Rose! This is Wayne Rooney! One of the greatest English footballer players, ever too..."
"Yeah, yeah whatever I'm bored"
Stanley groaned out loud as he put his latest football card down. "Trying to teach you football is like trying to teach a elephant to tap dance" he spat out in frustration.
"You've never taught an Elephant how to tap dance, so you can't judge" Rose told him matter of factly.
"It was figure of speech, you're just stupid because you're younger than me" Stanley teased.
"AM NOT!" Rose yelled.
"Are too" Stanley jested back.
Rose didn't have much patience, she leapt onto Stanley and began to pull his hair using his free hand, Stanley slapped Rose's face an unflinching Rose kicked his shin, Stanley used his football trained legs to kick her back...
The small fight had finished almost as quickly as it had started. Both of them were littered with a few bruises, but there was no malice behind it. By the end of the fight the two were laughing. "Your fight like a girl" Stanley said.
"I am a girl!" Rose yelled. Yet both were too exhausted to carry on fighting, so they simply laid back.
"I wish I had a football, I'm bored in here" Stanley muttered after a while.
"At least it would take our minds off Quincey and your parents fighting all the time" Rose said solemnly.
"It's annoying, I don't know why they all can't just get on" Stanley vented.
"Yeah..." Rose echoed.
There was a long silence between the pair as the morning sun rose through the windows, Rose and Stanley lay side by side in the empty corridor.
"You know it's my birthday in a week" Stanley said at last.
"Really? Is there going to be cake?" Rose asked right off the bat.
"I dunno" Stanley muttered.
There was another lull in conversation as Stanley rose, into a crouching position, sweeping up his football cards that were scattered across the floor. Strands of his thick beach blonde hair gleaming in the sunlight as his cool blue eyes inspected each card. The thirteen year old was in a state of chronic boredom yet the distant noises of the dead, still unnerved him slightly.
"Hey, Stan, do you know something cool?" Rose said suddenly her eyes lighting up, as she sprung up from where she lying on the dusty floor.
"What? You found a football somewhere?" Stanley asked without a lot of hope.
"Nope, but I saw Camden before all this..."
Camden had a fairly decent night's sleep, so he shouldn't have been feeling on edge like he was. Yet Oliver seemed to be tailing him today, as a prickly feeling rose from the back of Camden's neck, trying to dismiss it, he sat at the main kitchen table. (The "Centre Hub of Operations" as Quincey had nicknamed it this morning) yet despite his cheery attitude Camden knew he hadn't gotten lucky with that Delilah girl.
"How'd you sleep?" Camden asked Bradley, as he sat down before he realised this was the first time he spoke to him since last night's revelation. Camden's throat tightened as he awaited a response.
"Okay" Bradley responded simply, he had no bible on him today, yet it was close at hand. Camden could bet, Ian's form lingered like a shadow over Bradley. He still looked the same to Camden, even in the same clothes, a green coat with a woolly scarf draped around his neck.
"You might want to change your clothes, you'll get hot in those" Camden noted, as Bradley cast his eyes over Camden's new attire of a plain white T-shirt, and black jogging bottoms he had no cap on today, as his bald head shone.
"No, I'm okay" Bradley said. Camden noted that seemed to be one of Bradley's key phrases an obedient, simple saying, yet Camden knew he was trying to hide something behind it.
He shared a worried glance with Ian. Oliver was peering into the scene like a hawk.
Delilah liked being alone.
Right now she sat on the staircase shivering, right in front of the barricade that held thousands of "those monsters" back. She gazed at their faces as tears slid down her cheeks. She wondered if her Mother or if Philip were like them. Right now. Rotting and hissing like rats down a gutter.
She sat there blankly, not really knowing what had drawn her to this spot but after everything she had been through she was still in a numb haze. Watching the others through a filter, that game yesterday, the arguments, everything. It just felt like a blur, the others may have been concerned with each other and their little safe haven.
But Delilah's head was elsewhere, a robot controlling her body right now.
"You need to pull yourself together" She told herself to no avail, she needed some sense of closure some one to talk too. Quincey may have slept next to her last night, but he felt as distant as any of the people she loved, she was trapped in her own grieving world right now. Not really sure whether just to remain rooted to the spot crying, Or just too throw herself over the railings and end it all to stop more suffering she would have to endure.
She didn't know how much time had passed, She didn't even hear him approach, She only knew he was there when he asked.
"Are you alright?"
Quincey, the white haired man seemed rather persistent on checking on her. Not that Delilah cared of course She turned back to him, Still crying.
"It's been four days" she began, her voice still strong despite her state "and they haven't dehydrated they should be dead by now but their not, which means..."
Quincey's look of horror told Delilah he had figured it out. Delilah knew this epidemic of "The Black Dead" was going to go on for a while longer.