The officer flips through the air in a sloppy spiral his legs and arms rotating as he flies until he slams into the wall beside the doors of the police station with a bone-shattering crunching sound. He then slides slowly down the wall and lies bonelessly on the ground, leaving a trail of blood and gore dripping down the wall.
The two remaining police officers turn and watch the body slide down the wall with looks of terror on their faces.
Darren turns and opens fire on the officer with the smashed in head and glowing eyes, running a trail of bullets across his shoulders and chest. Candy and Chevelle turn and open fire on him as well riddling the corpse with bullets. Hanzo levels his shotgun and fires both barrels at the cops chest, the two twelve-gauge slugs tear huge holes through the chest cutting through a pair of tentacles that had just burst from the body. The corpse falls to the ground twitching its arms lying to either side its hands clenching and un-clenching, most of the chest is gone with only blood-splattered hunks remaining. The smashed-ruined head has fallen backward and from the neck a thick black tentacle bursts forth and grabs Joey’s left leg. He screams as it flings him through the air and he lands smashing into one of the burned-out wrecks in the parking lot.
Hanzo reloads his shotgun after stepping back a few steps with two shells from his pocket. Chevelle screams and empties her Glock into the bloody and fragmented head. The two officers turn back just in time to see the tentacle grab Joey and they both scream and open fire with their assault rifles on the corpse of their friend. There is a whooshing noise and a greenish-black fire rises from the neck of the body, from the end of each arm and each leg. The tentacle coming out of the neck writhes around and then lays down on the ground as the fire consumes it and the remaining limbs, leaving behind an exact replica of itself formed out of ash.
Chevelle runs out into the parking lot and kneels down by Joey and gathers him up in her arms. Darren pulls the clip from his AR15 and starts to reload it with bullets from his pocket.
“Don’t touch that! Leave it be,” Candy says to one of the police officers who is crouching down his hand reaching for the remains.
“Craig, leave that alone and go check on Buddy,” Dale says to the other cop.
Craig stares at the tentacle made of ash in front of him for another second and quickly pokes it with the tip of his finger and then smiles as it crumbles to a pile of dust before his eyes. He stands up wiping the ash from his finger on his pants and walks over to the body smashed into the wall by the door.
“Aww Buddy, what have they done to ya,” Craig says, kneeling down beside the corpse.
The head of the body snaps upward clipping Craig in the chin which throws him backward to fall on his ass. The skin of Buddy’s face has slid half-way off his skull and one of his eyes has popped and there is whitish goop running down his cheek. The mouth opens up and a set of three tentacles tear out of his lips peeling the skin back from his jaws like a banana and they reach for Hanzo.
Hanzo snaps his shotgun closed and smiling he raises it up and fires both slugs at the things face. The tentacles drop to the ground and Buddy’s jaw disintegrates as the huge steel-jacketed slugs tear the head off of the body. From the neck another four tentacles lash out tearing open the corpses collar bones and something bulges for a second as Hanzo staggers backward to reload. The bulge sprouts an eye in the center of its mass and more tentacles tear it free of the body. The eye has two irises each dancing across the surface of the orb in dizzying patterns.
“Fuck that shit,” Hanzo says, he drops the shotgun and pulls both of his Desert Eagles and opens fire.
The bullets enter the eye splashing white goo around but the surface of the orb closes behind the bullets. Dale screams as he kneels there trying to pull Craig away from the corpse and gets hit with eye-goo.
“What the fuck dude?” Dale yells, as he drops Craig and frantically wipes the goop from his skin with his shirt sleeve.
Hanzo glances over in time to see Dale’s arm wipe away the goop, revealing an eye on his cheek with feelers that are digging into his head. Hanzo snaps his right gun onto Dale and the other continues to fire on Buddy’s corpse and the creature pulling itself free of his chest. Hanzo pulls his trigger and Dale’s head explodes in a shower of brains and bone-fragments.
“A little help guys?” Hanzo yells as Dale’s body falls to the ground twitching.
Candy’s rifle is empty so she slings it over her shoulder and stooping down she picks up one of the police officer’s AR15s she points it at the bulbous growing green and black thing bursting from the chest of the corpse and opens fire. She holds the trigger down and peppers the body with a full-auto burst until the clip empties. The bullets tear into the thing knocking copious amounts of fluid and mucus-like ichor from it as it half-deflates like a rotted watermelon.
A string of flashlights come running over from the casino next door. “Hold your fire!” A voice yells.
Hanzo, Candy and Darren go back to back making a triangle covering all around them. All of them reload as the lights approach.
“Joey are you okay?” Darren yells.
“He is still unconscious!” Chevelle yells.
“Stand down Darren,” Rob Fox yells walking into the light out front of the police station.
“Fine then, y’all deal with this, but take a little advice from the Rapid Ramen, don’t touch those mother fuckers,” Hanzo yells back to Rob nodding his head toward the fallen officers.
“Yeah, she’s right we’re good, you can keep it,” Joey laughs, and rolls another joint.
Darren stares out the back of the truck clutching his rifle, his head still ringing with the pain of the savage scream he had just endured.
“Who fucking farted, holy fuck that reeks,” Darren says.
Chevelle follows Hanzo down the off-ramp as they exit the highway at the main street exit. They roll across the intersection and turn to the right and pull into the police station. She pulls up next to the semi and they come to a stop next to Hanzo’s trucks cab. The parking lot is more of a circular driveway out front of the building and in the empty field between it and the highway lay the bodies of several rotting alligators, and human corpses that they had been feeding on. Each of the corpses are swarming with millions of huge buzzing flies that are feasting on the putrefying flesh of the dead reptiles. There are seven burned out and gutted vehicles, sitting in the parking lot, there is one truck on fire right by the entrance to the place and the rest are up by the building. Where the median usually is in the street that the police station is on runs a river, in the river an Airboat is tied up to a tree and there are around six dead bikers littering the bank of the river beside it.
The door to the truck opens and Hanzo gets out and stretches his arms up in the air, from his mouth dangles a huge fat joint which is trailing streams of smoke. The smell of the rotted bodies is so bad that Candy pulls a bandana out of her pocket and ties it around her face. The pouring rain is dampening quite a bit of the smell and Darren guesses that in the morning this must be hell on earth. Joey and Chevelle get out of the front of the truck and walk over to where Hanzo is standing and turn back to look at Candy and Darren in the bed of the truck. Darren takes a bandana that Candy hands him and ties it over his face. Darren hops down from the truck bed and helps Candy down as well, he turns with a joint still in his mouth and he walks over to where Hanzo and the others are standing.
There are lights inside the police station moving around and then the front door opens up and four police officers step outside with automatic rifles at the ready. One of the officers reaches over and swings a light around on one of the burned out wrecks and flicks it on. A bright beam of light shines on them and the cops check them out.
“Hold on there boys, hang on there fellas. We are here to see our buddy Rob Fox, we met him the other day and he said hey if you are ever in the neighborhood and so hey we’re here. Listen guys I got some of the best cheddar you ever tasted and all we want in return is to have a little chat with our buddy Rob… Sound fair?” Hanzo says, taking the lead.
“You know the sheriff?” one of the officers asks.
Darren looks over at Joey and says, “Looks like he got a promotion.”
“Sure does,” Joey replies, with a smile.
“Yes, so you claim to know the sheriff, tell you folks what. You let me walk on back inside here and make a call on the radio. Then we will see what we will see. You are more than welcome to just stand there quietly and not move, sounds fair huh?” the officer replies.
“Fine and dandy if they are real cops,” Darren whispers, toward Joey with the joint still in his mouth.
Joey reaches his left hand up and scratches his eyebrow for a second, during which he uses his pinky to quickly pull aside his eye-patch and then let it snap back. The police officers look normal but beyond them some sort of greenish tendrils of smoke or something is hovering above what looks like one of the bodies out in the field by the highway.
“They are okay,” Joey whispers back to Darren.
Hanzo smiles and holds out his huge joint toward the cops and nods, asking them if they want a hit. Two of the cops silently nod to him but the third shakes his head.
“No thanks friend, we are on duty.” say the cop who shook his head.
The other two cops simultaneously and look at the cop who spoke with astonishment on their faces. The fourth officer comes back outside and then walks over the other three.
“What are your names?” the officer asks them.
“I am Darren, and this here is Candy,” Darren says indicating himself and Candy.
“I am Hanzo,” Hanzo replies.
“I am Chevelle,” Chevelle says with a smile.
“And I am Joey,” Joey says.
“Ok good there was one other name he mentioned but we are good, I am Dale,” the cop says.
“Ray Ray,” Chevelle says with a giggle.
“It is really fun bantering back and forth but would you mind if we take this conversation inside over a cup of coffee perhaps?” Darren says, and pulls his rifle over his shoulder by the strap.
They start walking toward the door of the police station. Lightning strike in the distance and Joey stops Darren just as they get to the door. They let the others go on inside and Joey looks up at Darren, “There is something out there in the field.”
“Is it something only you can see?” Darren asks looking right at him.
“What did you see?” Dale and the other officers ask, and they crowd at the doorway to look back out into the field where Joey is staring.
Candy slips her rifle from it’s strap on her shoulder and walks back out to stand beside Darren.
“What did you see Joey?” Chevelle asks coming to stand beside him.
Joey pulls his eye-patch off his head and stares at each of the cops in turn causing them to flinch back away from his nasty-looking wounded eye. He stares back out at the field at the green-ish tendrils waving over one of the corpses.
“It is there,” he says, pointing toward one of the bodies. “It’s one of those things again, whatever that body is, it isn’t all the way dead yet.”
“I don’t see it, what are you talking about?” one of the cops asks.
Out in the field there is a moaning sound over the noise of the rain and thunder and then surrounded by a green glow, the body sits up with its malevolent eyes burning with green light.
Darren pulls his earplug out and listens for a second. The blood so ripe to taste the pulsing red, the red that lives and splatters. Darren the plug back in his ear.
“Holy shit, what the fuck is that?” one of the cops asks.
“Why is it glowing, what is that thing?” another cop asks.
Darren shoves Candy toward the front doors of the building and raising his AR15 and opens fire.
Joey pulls his rifle from his shoulder and opens fire. The police, Hanzo and the girls waste no time in joining them. Hundreds of bullets tear through the corpse as it struggles to its feet out in the mud. It staggers under fire and walks toward them slowly step by step moaning in it’s rage. A tentacle rips from its chest and grabs a corpse from the ground beside it with a flick the thing hurls the corpse at them. The obese corpse spins end over end in the air toward them and smashes into one of pillars holding up the carport at the front of the building. The body explodes and chunks of flesh go flying off in all directions, the head flies toward them. It hits one of the cops in the face and splatters like an over-ripe apple raining chunks of brains, meat and gore all over the pavement. The officer falls down bonelessly his face shattered by the impact of the now flattened skull. His hands twitch frantically as a swarm of rotted green-glowing maggots tear into the jagged remains of his face.
“Kenny!” one of the other officers bellows hurrying over to him.
The corpse out in the field tears a section of the fence around the building apart and manages a few steps beyond it and them collapses in a hail of bullets.
Joey turns as the dead officer sits up and throws his friend aside like a loaf of bread, “You gotta be fucking kidding me!” he yells as the fallen cop’s eyes light up with a wicked green glow.
Darren falls over sideways with his hands over his ears and his face scrapes along the pavement as he writhes in agony, his stomach is empty so he lies there dry-heaving over and over again his stomach clenched in pain. The sounds of the scream echoing in his head rebounding from one side of his brain to the other, the timbre of the voice in its agony as the demonic presence is torn from this plane of reality and shoved screaming through the tiny jagged rift into its dark home dimension. Darren’s feet are kicking on the pavement and his head is pounding along with his racing heartbeat, his breath comes in gasps and his hands are trying to dig their way into his skull. He screams between the dry heaving agony of pain as his stomach clenches one final time and he collapses to the broken pavement and finally lies still.
Candy grabs his arms under the shoulders and Joey walks over and grabs his feet and they hoist him up between them and roll him into the back of the pickup truck. He falls to the truck bed with a grunt as his chest smashes into the corner of a case of beer.
Candy runs over and grabs up Darren and pulls his head into her lap as she stroke his hair her eyes darting over him looking for injury but finding nothing save a trickle of green-ish slime running from his right ear.
Candy digs into Darren’s pocket and gets the keys to the truck out and tosses them to Chevelle, who catches them in the air and with a smile of delight she traces her hand down the side of the truck as if caressing it like a pet. Candy hops into the back of the truck with Darren as Chevelle climbs into the drivers side and Joey hops into the passenger side. Joey slaps a fresh clip into his AR15 and sets it beside him on the seat. He reloads Chevelle’s Glock for her as well as she starts up the truck and they back up a bit to give Hanzo room because he is waving her back.
Once she is back far enough Hanzo swings back up into the cab of the truck and starts it up once more, he backs up a bit and then slams forward crashing the cow-catcher on the front of his truck on a wreck on the shoulder of the road. The old station wagon is on its side and it falls over into the guard-rail on top of the concrete barrier beside the road with a shower of sparks and screaming metal. He then backs up once more and rams into a truck on the shoulder of the road, which screeches as it slides along the guard rail and bending it the truck flips over and off of the raised section of highway to smash down into the swampy ground below.
“All right hug that railing and we should be able to make it along the shoulder Chevelle y’all follow me,” Hanzo says.
“Lead on,” Chevelle says, into the handset of the radio.
The huge semi-truck slides along the edge of the shoulder of the road narrowly missing the twisted remains of the piled wrecks blocking the highway. There is a wrenching sound as metal is smashed and buckled and the semi plows through a wrecked Bentley, within the windows as they pass they can see the pulped remains of the once obviously rich driver his blood splatter all over the hand-tooled leather interior.
“Yeah death doesn’t care how rich you are dickhead,” Chevelle says, as leave the ravaged corpse behind.
“What did that poor guy ever do to you?” Joey asks her.
She glances over at him, her eyes are glaring at him. “He is just like every other rich fat-cat who wanted to blow a load in my fucking mouth, and frankly I am glad he is dead.”
“Oh well in that case, you are right fuck that guy,” Joey agrees.
Hanzo swerves back onto the lane of the highway and they pick up more speed as he slowly swerves from side-to-side avoiding as many of the wrecks along the way as he can and smashing through the others.
Joey rolls up a fat joint and he and Chevelle pass it back and forth as they ride along following the tail-lights of the huge semi in front of them. Candy pokes her head in through the back and grabs it a few times and takes some hits off of it as well.
“Hey, any one have a Vicodin? Or seventy? Give me that shit, don’t bogart that joint,” says a groggy voice, from the back of the truck bed.
“Okay but wash your damn mouth out first I don’t want puke on the joint,” Candy says with a laugh as she turns to face him.
Darren pulls a beer from the case he is lying on and pops the top and washes out his mouth with the foam that comes spewing out of it. He gargles a bit and smiles at Candy as he spits about a quarter of the beer out the back of the truck.
“Got any dental floss?” Darren asks her.
“Eww, gross you nasty fucker,” Candy says handing him the joint.
Darren sits back with it rubs the sleeve of his shirt over his mouth to clean it a bit and then turning his head he hold one nostril closed and snot-rockets over the back of the tail gate. He then clears the other nostril and then rinses his mouth out once more he puffs on the joint and hands it back to her with a smile.
“You know I don’t see how those European fuckers can take it,” he says with a sigh.
“What the fuck are you talking about?” Candy asks him.
“Well, they drink beer at room temperature over there, sadly over here its 89 degrees and it might as well be a cooked beer,” Darren says.
“I don’t give a fuck if the beer is char-broiled over a fucking slow fire, pass the mother fucker back up here you ass-pilot,” Joey says from the front of the truck.
“Just roll another joint, because I don’t want some pukey, snot-rocket joint coming back up here,” Chevelle says.
“Fuck Ray and his free willy, we got bikers back there again. If you want to free something free up some rounds to knock some of those fuckers down,” Darren says over the radio.
“Well I would love to, but I am busy driving Darren, sorry,” Hanzo laughs.
“Me too hey Joey I see ’em coming again,” Darren yells out the back window.
“I see ’em,” Joey yells back.
Behind the truck Joey can see a group of headlights getting closer, they are moving back and forth as the bikers dodge and weave through the wrecks on the road like the trucks are doing. Joey lays his AR-15 across the top of the tailgate and lines up a shot with one of the headlights, he pulls the trigger unleashing a three-round burst. The rifle fires and the headlight of the bike goes down instantly there is a smashing sound and two other headlights go out as their riders crash into the first wreck. Joey lines up with another headlight and pulls the trigger once more, there is another sound of tortured metal and the distant bellowing yell as several more headlights go out along with the wrecked bike. Chevelle grabs Joey and pulls him down as the bikers start shooting back at them.
The truck jogs to the left as Darren follows Hanzo onto the shoulder of the road to avoid a huge wrecked-pile of vehicles and then they are on the highway once more as they lurch back over.
“Hey hold up, we gotta stop,” Hanzo yells.
“Whats happening?” Darren asks.
“There is a truck smashed at the exit and about seven cars and trucks piled into the back of him,” Hanzo says, as he brings the semi to a stop in the road.
“So it looks like this is where we make our stand, because if we stop here they are going to be on us before we can move any of those wrecks out-of-the-way,” Darren says, looking in the rear-view mirror at the still approaching headlights of the bikers.
Darren grabs his gun and the huge 1.75ml bottle of Crown Royal and slips out of the truck, he walks over behind one of the wrecked cars on the shoulder of the road. Candy follows him and gets her sniper rifle ready, she lines up a shot with one of the headlights approaching from behind them.
Joey and Chevelle get out of the truck bed and go to the other side of the road and get down behind the smashed remains of a station wagon. The bikes get a bit closer and then Candy pulls the trigger and one of the bikers takes the .223 bullet in the chest and lurches to his right dumping the bike over and sending it tumbling end over end as he slides and rolls along the pavement coming to a stop in a blood-soaked heap. Joey takes aim and pulls the trigger and takes out another biker with a three-round burst. Darren opens fire with a three round burst hitting one of the bikes knocking out the headlights and then he sets his rifle down and opens the bottle of Crown Royal.
“I thought you were just saying we need to stay sober and not get fucked up so much anymore so we can deal with this shit, hell its been so long now I am damn near sober again,” Candy says, laughing as she watches him twist cap off of the bottle.
“You know your right, I am damn near sober again myself,” Darren says and he tips back the bottle and takes a big swig. “Here hit this before I light it up.”
“Okay,” she says and takes two huge massive swallows of the liquor and then hands it back to him.
Darren stuffs the purple cloth bag into the neck of the bottle and ties it on there with the gold braided rope of the bag and tips it over to wet it and then nods to Candy. Once a mass of bikers get closer she nods back and lights up the bag. Darren cocks back his arm and throws the bottle at the group of oncoming bikers. The bottle strikes the road in-between the mob of them and three of the riders go down instantly, the other two have just enough time to yell and try to swerve before hitting the now-tumbling wrecks of their buddies bikes. There is much screaming and yelling as the bikes flip over and slide with in a shower of sparks and then slam into the wrecks on the road. The fire spreads as more motorcycle gas tanks rupture lighting up the area and although the drizzling rain is holding the fires to a minimum. However it does give Candy a bunch of good clean shots at the bikers who are stopping beyond the fire and getting off of their bikes and taking cover in and around the wrecks on the shoulders of the road.
Candy works the bolt on her rifle and fires again and again at any of the bikers she can see. Their screams echo in the dim firelight as several of them crawl for cover across the wet pavement. Darren picks off two of the crawling bikers and is looking around for more targets when Hanzo arrives and crouches down beside him.
“Did I miss the party?” Hanzo asks.
“Actually we just started this BBQ,” Darren says laughing.
Lightning strikes back down the road and then again and again getting closer each time like the steps of a massive electrical giant. Several motorcycles are flung aside as one of the bikers comes walking into view his chest a writhing mass of tentacles which are picking things up and throwing them aside as he walks toward them. Candy fires her rifle and the back of the bikers head explodes in a shower of flesh, blood and skull fragments. The biker doesn’t even slow down as Joey empties his clip into its chest. Darren empties his clip as well and the thing never misses a step. Joey slaps in a fresh clip and fires at the thing once more, Chevelle puts a fresh clip into her Glock and fires again as well.
“Shoot his legs,” Darren says.
Hanzo pulls out both of his Desert Eagles and opens fire the beams of his laser sights touching on the things knees. It’s legs give out and it keeps coming for them on its chest, dragging itself along with its tentacles. The long slimy tentacles pick up the things chest like legs and it moves forward like some sort of obscene crab, its mouth spouting tentacles which drip slime as it gets closer to them.
Darren gets up and flicks his AR-15 to full-auto he starts walking toward the thing and opens fire. Joey gets up on the other side of the road and starts toward it as well. Darren aims for the tentacles and keeps shooting them out from under it as it comes at them. Hanzo goes out into the middle of the road and holsters his Desert Eagles and he pulls out his shotgun. He opens fire as well blowing huge chunks of the things head and shoulders off as it coughs up slime and slithers along on toward them. The things tentacles grab up the corpse of one of the biker from the road and flings it at them. Hanzo has time to widen his eyes slightly before getting his in the chest with the hurtling body. He is picked up off of his feet and thrown backward to land on his back under the corpse knocking the wind out of him.
“Hanzo!” Joey yells, emptying another clip into the gaping ruin that was once the things face.
The thing collapses as Darren and Candy shoot the last of its tentacles out from under it. It starts to drag itself toward them once more but the severed tentacles catching fire engulf it in flames. Chevelle Throws her bottle of whiskey at it to help it along. The thing writhes in the flames and its chest rips open. From within its body cavity a black thing bursts forth screaming with a high-pitched wail at them. Its tentacles reach for them as the flames catch up to it igniting, it in a boiling maelstrom of flaming liquid slime and ooze. The thing collapses and stops screaming finally. Darren falls to his knees and vomits as the scream echoes out into the sky like a fleeing bird.
“Guys, hows it going out there? I am already kinda bored,” Ray says over the walkie-talkies.
“Well let me tell ya there Ray, we are just having ourselves a good ole time, I got a huge bag of weed and a horde of bikers on my tail. We’re having more fun than a weasel in a Rhode-Island red hen-house,” Hanzo says.
“Well damn, ever since you guys left, all the action left with you, its quieter than snow in hell,” Ray replies.
“Let me tell you about snow man, I once had a gig rolling a truck full of frozen turkeys up to Buffalo in January. It snowed so much I could have sworn I messed up and ended up in Ottowa. The drifts on the side of the road were taller than the truck in some places, and the visibility was about 25 fucking feet. So let me tell ya it was chocolate trousers time,” Hanzo says.
Ray laughs for a few seconds, “So did you make your delivery on-time?” he asks.
“You bet I did man, I always deliver,” Hanzo replies.
“Heck you probably saved on your freezer bill on that run, no need to worry about turkeys thawing out on a day like that,” Ray says.
“You got that right, the funny thing was, I found out later from my dispatcher, those turkeys were destined for a community shelter, they were donated by some grocery conglomerate to a charity house,” Hanzo says.
“Why is that funny?” Ray replies.
“Well if they were going to give them away what difference did it make if they were there on January 5th or not man? Why have me nearly kill myself getting them there if no one was going to make a profit out of it at all. Well no one except me I guess,” Hanzo laughs.
“Because homeless people gotta eat to man,” Ray replies.
“Ray were your parents fucking hippies?” Hanzo asks.
“Hey you leave my mom, Sunshine and my dad, Freedom-Ray out of this,” Ray replies.
“Uhm Ray…?” Hanzo asks.
“Yes?” Ray replies.
“What is your full name Ray?” Hanzo asks him.
“…Why?” Ray asks.
“Just had a thought and I was wondering…” Hanzo says.
“Okay, well I don’t see why it would matter but my full name is, Freedom Ray GP Sunshine Rogers Junior,” Ray tells him.
“Holy fucking hell, whats the GP stand for?” Hanzo asks.
“GreenPeace,” Ray replies.
“No fucking way, you are making that up,” Hanzo says.
“No that is on my birth certificate, I tried to change it from peace to thumb a few years back but they would not let me,” Ray replies.
Hanzo laughs loudly over the radio.
“You should have seen how much trouble it took for me to get my driver’s license,” Ray laughs.
“Let me ask you something Ray, did you get beat up in school alot?” Hanzo asks.
“No man I had the best weed, man everyone loved me in high school,” Ray replies.
Hanzo laughs even louder.
“Yeah man, if it hadn’t been for the weed life as a computer using dweeb would have been hell,” Ray laughs.
“Ray’s right we really did call him G.P. in high school,” Dawn says laughing on the radio.
“See I don’t lie man,” Ray laughs.
“No wonder you moved next to him Dawn,” Darren laughs.
“Hey what are you talking about man, this is the house I grew up in and that is the house she grew up in. Hell I am the second generation in that buried container to. My dad had a PHD in weedology,” Ray tells them.
“Your so full of shit Ray, there is no such thing as weedology,” Hanzo laughs.
“Okay your right about that he was an agricultural specialist though, he did have degree in that,” Ray says.
“Really?” Hanzo laughs.
“Yeah, the strain of weed I am growing was cultivated, cloned, nurtured and invented by my dad,” Ray replies, “It is specifically designed to grow in a container, with the idea that eventually it would be grown in hothouses on other planets and on interstellar voyages. My dad was a bit of a Star Trek nerd.”
“No fucking way,” Hanzo laughs, “Star Trek sucks ass compared to Star Wars man, Jedi rule man. Didn’t you know.”
“Fuck those mitichlonrians right in jar-jar’s stupid asshole man,” Ray laughs.
“Oh no he didn’t. You just had to bring up fucking jar-jar didn’t you,” Hanzo says.
“Look as hard as you like, you will never find an abomination as absurd as jar-jar in Star Trek,” Ray laughs.
“What about the Tribbles?” Hanzo asks.
“Ok, I will give you that, the tribbles were awful,” Ray laughs.
“While I agree that jar-jar was terrible, but then again Chakotay from Voyager was a piece of shit, I hated him and he ruined that show,” Dawn says.
“Him and Neelix sucked much ass,” Hanzo laughs.
“Wait a second Hanzo, you pretty much just admitted to watching star trek,” Ray laughs.
“Shut the fuck GreenPeace, somewhere there is a willy that needs freeing Ray go get on it,” Hanzo laughs.
“Here they come,” Hanzo yells as several of the bikers turn onto I-20 from Merry Moss St.
“Get your pig stickers cause here come some hogs,” Darren says.
“Fuck the knives, shoot those mother fuckers,” Joey says.
“What about the thing? …Where is it?” Candy asks.
“Oh that thing… It’s reaching for us,” Joey says.
“What do you mean reaching for us?” Hanzo asks.
The bikers start shooting at them bullets smash into the metal of the truck and sparks fly as they ricochet off of the semi-trailer.
More bikers pull onto I-20 behind them and join the chase.
“Get in the back Joey, start spraying these motherfuckers down,” Darren says.
“And just how exactly and I supposed to get through this little ass window?” Joey asks him gesturing to the tiny sliding window in the back of the cab.
“I was thinking you’d climb out the side window and pull one of those rock-star movie moves and slip into the bed of the truck,” Darren says.
“How about if I just go out the goddamn sunroof and slide off the roof into the bed?” Joey says.
“That’s brilliant,” Darren replies.
“All right I’ll go for it, hang on,” Joey says, as he slides his AR-15 through the little back window and into the bed of the truck.
A few more shots are fired and they all duck, Joey slides open the sunroof and stands up in it. Then he steps onto the back of the seat and slides out onto the roof. Darren swerves to avoid a wrecked car on the road and Joey yells as he slides into the bed of the truck. He rolls and hits up against the tailgate of the truck, which pops open and he slides out onto it. His legs fall over the back of the tailgate as he yells and tries to grab onto something. His hand catches the tailgate cable and his feet hit the street for a second until he picks them up again.
“Hey, hey goddamnit,” Joey yells.
“What the fuck are you doing?” Chevelle yells.
“Ask A.J. fucking foyt up there,” Joey yells back at her.
“Hang on, I am coming,” Chevelle says as she slips out the back window.
She crawls along the bed of the truck and braces her feet on the edge of the truck bed beside the tailgate. She reaches down and grabs his shoulders and straightening out her legs heaves him up. He rolls a bit and gets back up into the bed of the truck. They both grab the tailgate and pull it up and slam it shut. Just as Joey starts to turn to look for his AR-15, a hand comes out of the darkness and grabs for him. He pulls back and slams into Chevelle and they both fall over once more.
“There is a guy on a sidecar,” Joey yells to her.
“A what?” she replies.
Suddenly there is a biker climbing over the tailgate and reaching for them. A motorcycle with a sidecar sweeps away as he makes a grab for Chevelle. She kicks him in the balls. As the guy starts to fall over Joey pulls out his Glock and shoots the guy in the chest. The guy screams as the bullet punches through him and falls backward. He lands halfway over the tailgate and the bike with the sidecar comes close again the guy trying to line up with the truck. Joey shoots him too with his Glock, but Darren swerving around something causes him to miss. The guy on with the sidecar doesn’t swerve in time though and the bike flips over. Two more motorcycles slam into it as it bounces along and all three of them smash into the ditch beside the road.
Joey waits for a few seconds and holsters the Glock once more, he gets up and ducks back down again as someone shoots at them. There are at least twenty head-lights following them now as they hit the on-ramp to I-90.
The truck gains speed as Darren floors it around the curving ramp, lightning stabs down from the sky once more lighting up the road for a brief second. Chevelle opens fire with her Glock and two more of the bikes spin out of control off of the ramp. Joey grabs up his Ar-15 and flicks off the safety. He crouches down behind the tail gate beside Chevelle and waits. Lightning strikes again and they both open fire, this time two more bikers wreck off the road and a third smashes into another and two more wreck into the ditch.
“Where is the thing at?” Chevelle asks.
“I don’t know,” Joey replies.
“Watch it,” Hanzo yells on the radio.
“I’m with ya,” Darren says.
They dodge in-between a turned-over semi-truck and a huge pick-up truck with a welding rig on the back of it. They squeeze through the gap and then instantly dodge to the left to avoid a mini-van smashed under the front of the semi-truck. Behind them two of the motorcycles fly through the gap but don’t make it around the mini-van. There is a massive crashing noise and the monstrous sound of metal crushing. There is the sound of men bellowing and screaming in pain and then there are no more head-lights behind them.
Joey takes off his eye-patch for a second and sighs in relief as there is nothing to be seen.
“It’s gone,” Joey says.
“Good,” Chevelle says, and slumps down into the bed of the truck.
“They are off our tail for a few, floor it Hanzo,” Darren says after glancing at the rear-view mirror.
“Breaker I Nine Zero, this is Hanzo once again in the Rapid-Ramen, we just shook off some hogs and are coming down the home stretch like shit through a goose. Clear us a path to New Orleans and I mean pronto baby!” Hanzo yells into the radio with enthusiasm.
There is no reply only static…
Darren, Candy, Chevelle and Joey all pile into the truck. Darren fires up the engine and follows Hanzo out onto South street again. Hanzo takes a right on Deadwood and they head south toward Gibson. In the distance they can see several fires burning brightly through the trees. The rain has slowed down to a slow sprinkle which stops as they get going.
Joey lights up a cigarette and opens up a map of Louisiana.
“Hey did you know that this whole end of the world thing has fucked up traffic even worse than before?” Joey asks.
“How so?” Chevelle replies.
“Well that cheese farm is about 23 miles away from Ray’s house… We should have been able to get there in just a few minutes back before the end of the world,” Joey says.
“Well that is not accounting for the massive piles of car wrecks, the wandering infected people and all the flaming family unity we have enjoyed seeing since the world ended. And had it not been for the end of the world would we have really cared about the cheese anyways?” Darren asks.
“Hell no, if the world hadn’t ended, we would still be knee-deep in velveeta mother fucker,” Joey laughs.
“Granted even if it was the end of the world, I still like cheese. But hell I don’t miss civilization as it was, I mean all it meant to me was pay-per-view movies in seedy hotels. Imagine a completely drunk john who wants a blow job and even pays for one but just cannot stop pissing and puking everywhere long enough to get it. The smell of that alone makes me kinda glad life as we know it is over,” Candy says.
“Amen sister,” Chevelle laughs.
“That is fucking disgusting,” Joey and Darren say at once.
“Yeah it is, you men are fucking pigs,” Candy says.
“Yeah I mean think about it you found us trapped in the back of a limo squatting over empty whiskey bottles to piss in, that was fucking gross too,” Chevelle says.
“You know what, fuck it. I don’t miss America at all,” Candy laughs.
“Uncle sam was a great idea, but the fucking lobbyists fucked us in the ass,” Joey says.
“Shut the fuck up about politics, and just so ya know, lobbyists pay really fucking good. Especially when they want you to go break some shit and keep it quiet,” Darren says laughing.
“Wait.. What?” Joey asks.
“Uhm… nothing…” Darren says.
“Are you saying, that at some point you went out and smashed some shit for an illegal payoff?” Candy says.
“I don’t know what you are talking about…” Darren says, staring straight ahead.
They get to Gibson, and make a left on I-20 only to see the neighborhood to their right on fire.
“Holy hell,” Chevelle says.
“Hell is certainly one word for it,” Joey says.
“Wait, do you mean you see more of those things in these fires too,” Candy asks.
“Hell no, I aint sure I wanna know,” Joey says.
“I think we kinda need to know, don’t you?” Chevelle says.
“Really? Cause I think I am pretty happy, not knowing shit,” Joey says.
“Well, let me put it to you this way, if they were there in these fires, they could be reaching for us right now and we would never know because you wont look,” Chevelle says.
“Fucking A,” Joey says.
“Hey man someone lit this fucking place up like an ole Christmas tree,” Hanzo says over the radio.
“Fucking A,” Chevelle says back into the radio.
“I still aint looking,” Joey says.
“I think we kinda need to know…Don’t you?” Candy says.
“All right fine, but don’t say I didn’t fucking warn you,” Joey says.
He raises up his hand and lifts the eye-patch off of his eye for a second and looks around at the fires burning as they drive by.
The nearest fires are just burning buildings, their flames licking up at the darkened clouds overhead. Beyond them though, he can see through the buildings a horde of headlights rolling through the town and over them is floating one of the things. It turns its head and sees them, its eyes gleam against the storm-clouds above and it raises its hand and points at them. It’s mouth opens silently and lightning smashes down from the sky.
Hanzo swerves to the left as lightning blasts down and blows an abandoned car on the side of the road apart. Darren swerves as well and another bolt of light strikes down and a tree beside the road explodes.
“Holy fucking shit,” Hanzo roars over the radio.
“Keep going dude, they are coming for us now, we have to stay ahead of them. They are riding through town and one of those things is there floating above them, it is leading them to us now,” Joey says into the radio.
Hanzo floors it and begins to accelerate as more bolts of lightning leap from the clouds above to explode all around them.
“It is that thing, it is using the lightning to try to stop us,” Joey says.
“How can it use the lightning?” Candy asks.
“How can it be as tall as the sky and yet shrink down to the size of a man,” Joey asks.
“Not. Of. This. World,” Darren says and stomps the gas pedal.
They keep up with Hanzo’s truck and stay right on his tail as he plows through some the wrecks along the road and swerves around others.
“Tell him to get on I-90 it will take us right to Gray so we can try to find Officer Rob,” Darren says.
“Hey Hanzo, once we get to the other side of town take the on-ramp for I-90 it will take us right to Gray,” Joey says.
“Well if all this fucking lightning doesn’t blow the truck up or make us wreck or fucking kill us all, then sure… I’ll hop on I-90 for ya,” Hanzo replies.
“This is fucking crazy…” Chevelle begins as lightning strikes a truck beside the road causing it to explode as they go past.
The ball of fire from the explosion rises up in the rear-view mirror and Darren whistles in admiration.
“Hey look behind us, that one was like the explosion in that movie,” Darren says.
“Oh man, this is fucking crazy,” Chevelle says looking back.
“Which movie?” Joey asks as he looks back.
“You know the one with the guy with that thing? You know the one with the explosions? And he had that thing but it was square yet round? Oh wait… wait… nevermind that’s a different movie,” Darren replies.
“You just sobered up didn’t ya? Like just this instant huh?” Candy says laughing.
“Wasn’t that movie Lethal-Death Impact-12?” Joey asks smiling.
“Yeah and he wore a hat that said who cares if your dead?” Darren laughs.
“I don’t know what you are talking about that movie was called Death-Fist 7: The bleached Rhino,” Hanzo laughs over the radio.
“Wait a minute? Wait a minute… The Bleached Rhino?” Darren asks.
“Yeah you know it’s one of those Troma movies,” Hanzo says laughing.
“Oh man I love that guy, he made Nuke ’em High,” Joey laughs.
“Hey didn’t Troma make Pot Zombies?” Darren asks.
“Fuck yeah they did, I love that movie!” Hanzo laughs over the radio.