[Ok, Sorry about the wait. I’m out of town and pressed for time, so I’ll have to update the links and stuff later.]
Countless hands pounded down and brought me to my hands and knees.
A zombie flopped down on my my back.
Another teeth-chattering roll of thunder.
That’s not thunder. It sounds more like…
A severed forearm splashed in the puddle just off to the left of my head. Thick, coagulated blood oozed out into the water.
My stomach churned. What would do that? I pushed up my head.
The zombie who had thrown himself across my back shifted a little. It was heavy, and the extra weight caused my knees to bite into the pavement.
My visor was streaked and muddied. The crowd of deads thinned out about ten feet feet ahead of me, but that’s all I could see.
To my right several heavy objects splashed down.
I shifted my weight a little to the left.
The dead man rolled off my back and flopped into the water. There was a gaping hole in the center of his neck. He wasn’t moving.
I turned my head away and peeked up at the horde. It was thinning out more and more as the bulk of the crowd went after the fires.
Another few moments, and most of the crowd would pass me.
A haggard zombie reached down at my helmet.
Thunder struck a third time.
The zombie’s head exploded and his lifeless corpse flew backward. He wasn’t the only one. A whole line of deads fell to the ground.
I snapped my head back toward the hospital and lifted my visor.
Through what was left of the crowd I could see a large man with a scraggly gray beard lowering his immense rifle.
It was kind of rifle I imagine he would use on safari in Africa to stop a charging elephant.
Seeing Samson through the rain gave me a boost of strength. I pulled a knee up under my chest and pushed hard against the ground.
Several dead hands pawed at my coat and helmet. One of them got hold of my left arm.
I jerked my left shoulder forward and pulled free.
Samson stepped forward and loaded another of the giant shells into the chamber.
Only three or four deads between me and open parking lot.
I shoved a zombie to the side.
Samson raised the gun.
Heavy fists slammed against my back.
I lost my balance and stumbled forward.
I collided with a dead woman. The impact kept me from sprawling out onto the pavement.
Samson’s gun roared again.
I felt the shock as the bullet slammed into and tore through a zombie on my right.
And then I was free.
I wasn’t moving fast, but I was free.
The rain seemed to be getting lighter now. My protective gear was heavier than ever. Underneath it all, my clothes were soaked. My ankle was hurt bad, and I was limping. Still, I was through the horde and headed toward safety.
Samson pulled back the lever on his rifle and loaded one more shell. He looked up at me as I reached him. His face has hard and his every motion meant business.
I grunted out something that was supposed to be “Thank you.”
He nodded and followed close behind me.
The hospital wasn’t far now. The ladders had been kicked away, but ropes had been lowered from two adjacent windows. Each rope had a loop tied in the end.
There was a crowd in the windows shouting instructions.
Through the rain and my own heavy breathing, I couldn’t understand what they said.
Pain shot from my ankle up my leg. I pushed harder. Even at that I knew I wasn’t much faster than the zombies.
Samson touched a hand to my shoulder. “You did it. You got everybody in there. Just keep moving.”
I reached up with my left hand and flipped off the helmet.
Real thunder rolled somewhere in the distance.
I pulled off my left glove and realized that somewhere along the line I had lost my right glove.
I doesn’t matter now. I got through.
I spared a look over my shoulder.
Ten or twenty zombies were giving chase.
I kept my pace.
Several more deads appeared in the broken down door of the hospital. It was only a short distance away from our ropes.
I threw my shoulders back and shook off the heavy coat.
We arrived at the hospital.
Samson put a hand on my shoulder one more time.
“The idiots knocked down the ladders. Just put your good foot in the stirrup and hold on.”
I looked up at him and tried again to verbalize a thanks.
He nodded. “Good work, Corbin.”
I nodded back, then turned to the rope. As soon as I got my foot in the loop, the crowd above started to pull.
I held on tight and my right hand started to throb like my foot.
I didn’t have much time to think about it, though.
To my right, Samson was being lifted off the ground.
Above me, the shouting intensified.
Then the worst happened.
The rope that was hauling up Samson snapped.
I looked down.
Samson was alive, but his leg was at an unnatural angle.
Hands from the window grabbed my arms.
My eyes couldn’t leave what was going on below.
Samson turned and started pushing himself up.
The crowd in the hospital pulled me through the window, dropped me to the floor, and immediately turned their attention back to Samson.
My heart beat hard against my rib cage. I didn’t want to believe what was happening.
The deads had only been a few feet away. They’d be on him any second.
Everyone was shouting.
I pushed back toward the window to see what was happening below.
He has to make it.
I shoved my way through and was able to peek out the window.
Samson had a hold of the rope in one hand. His other massive hand was balled up in a fist and drawn back. His foot wasn’t yet in the loop.
The closest zombie was crouched only a few feet away from him.
It lunged at Samson.
The blow snapped back the dead man’s head, but didn’t knock him back enough.
The zombie caught hold of Samson’s waist.
Two guys ripped me away from my window spot.
I pushed, but didn’t have the strength to fight my way back to the window.
It can’t be!
I staggered back.
Nobody was pulling on the rope yet. Samson wasn’t coming up.
The throbbing in my hand caught my attention again.
I took a look down.
My hand was covered in blood. A chunk of meat was missing from the fleshy part of my palm, and the wound was circled by a set of teeth marks.
Somewhere along the way, I had been bitten.
What in the world is Corbin going to do now? Keep reading to find out.