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Mechanical Failure, part VII

May 18, 2013

~continued~ (click on the link at the top of the page to read the full story to date)

I can see the water truck now. There’s a small group of the undead around it, and they’ve heard my engine. It still creeps me out to see their heads turn slowly my way when they first notice me. Now they’re walking over in that slow, lumbering way they have, but it’ll take them a while to reach me. I wait until they’re almost at my door then I quickly drive across the parking lot to the water truck. I know I only have about a minute so I move quickly, getting out and checking for keys. Nothing. I get back into my truck and drive slowly around the building as I try to figure out where the keys would be kept. Of course, there’s no way to tell from out here. I just don’t want to go inside, but I will have to do so. It’s going to be risky and I need to plan this well, but I’m getting used to that.

I see a back door that is flush with the building and doesn’t have a stoop or anything. If I can get the door open and drive right up next to it, I can leave the passenger window of the truck down and just crawl back through it when I have to leave. The truck will hold the door open. I’ve done this before. The only risk is if one of the infected gets under the truck or on top of it, then they might get in, but I’ll be armed. I am debating on whether I should just do this now while I’m here or if I should put it off for another day when I am not so tired. I think about it for a few more minutes then I decide that I’ll do it now so I don’t have to spend a lot of time worrying about it later. I circle the parking lot again and make sure they’re following me before I pull out onto the street with a little parade of the dead. Others join us along the way and I lead them all out toward the highway that continues to Las Vegas. I wish they would could keep going, maybe walk over the mountains, but I know they’ll stop when they hit the wall of cars at the pass. They always do.

When I decide we’ve gone far enough, I hit the gas and race down the highway, swerving around the cars that have been left on the road. I already moved enough of them to make a decent path. It comes in handy when I need to try to lead the dead away from town and maybe, deep down, I’m hoping that someone else will use that road someday. If that happens, I hope it’s someone good. I saw a lot of evil in people when this whole thing started and that thought always lingers in my mind.

I manage to lose my followers, though I know they’ll be back. I take the first exit off the highway and head away from town before connecting to a power line road. I am able to sneak back into Whispering Springs through a different route so my little parade won’t be able to follow. I pick up a couple of others on the way back in but I drive fast enough to lose them, too.

When I reach the municipal building again, it seems to be clear so I drive around to the back and jump out. I have to use the crowbar to open the door and I can’t help but notice the little chips of blood that flake off. I cleaned it after I left the grocery store, but sometimes I miss a spot or two.

Glancing around again, I see that I am still alone so I knock a few times then wait. After about a minute, I pull the door of the building open and I jump back. When nothing comes out, I know it’s probably safe to go in. I turn on my headlamp and aim it around the room. This wasn’t something I bought while in survival mode. My husband decided to be a miner for a Halloween party one year and it was part of his costume. He doesn’t need it anymore so I use it. It’s come in handy over the years, when camping or working in the attic, but it’s been invaluable since the world ended because it allows me to keep my hands free to wield my crowbar.

When I determine that the room is safe, I go back out and do a little maneuvering with the truck to get it into position. I’m pretty good at this part now. I prop the door open with a rock, then I pull the truck forward and get it as close to the building as I can, before backing up until I reach the door. I can hear the metal scrape as I back up farther, wedging the door tightly against the wall. The passenger window is now lined up with the open doorway and there is no room for anything to squeeze by the truck. Climbing through the window has gotten easy with practice. The first few times it was a little tricky, but I’ve gotten in better shape since then. I’ve lost over twenty pounds and I’m more physically fit than I have ever been. I’m sure I’d be dead by now, otherwise.

 ~to be continued~

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