Posts Tagged ‘the general’

We woke up this morning to a biting cold that seems to have gotten worse as the day has warn on. The snow started recently. We haven’t moved much, Javier and I have decided that it’s best we wait out the storm before we start moving again. The Undead are worse than we’ve ever seen them.

Yesterday, Javier and Vincent went out to see what could be salvaged from the few houses we haven’t picked through. I’m not sure how, but they got separated and somehow Vincent wound up face to face with a Walker. He was quick to put it down, but when he came back to camp we could all see how shaken he was. He told us how much more vicious the Walker was. He said it was slower than usual, probably because of the cold, but that it had been much more aggressive and agile once Vincent was within its reach.

Much like us, they are starving. We haven’t encountered anyone since the escape from the bunkers. Other survivors aren’t moving around which means the herds have less to pick off. We were lucky last year with such a soft winter, but it seems that this year will be cold, very cold and very difficult.

My mom and I were doing the wash. We finally talked about our lives in the bunkers. It’s something we have both avoided talking about. It hurts too much and it scares me how far I had to go in order to protect myself and my family.

“I am just thankful his plan didn’t work out,” my mom said absentmindedly.

I stopped soaking the kids’ shirts and looked at her. I swallowed hard, I often think about how different our circumstances would be if he had succeeded. “I am too,” is all I can manage.

“Javier came and sat with us everyday. He watched Vincent like a hawk. He was terrified that McGrady to turn him into one of his boys. I wanted to kill McGrady myself, but Javier told us it was best to wait so we could make sure you got out alive. I just never thought by waiting we would have put you in that position.”

My jaw was on the floor as I listened to my mom. She continued.

“Javier made me promise not to tell you, but he had a plan too. He had slowly been poisoning McGrady. Javier was his right hand man by the end and every night they would have a drink. It was easy for him to slip nightshade into it each time. He just wasn’t using enough because he wanted it to make it look like McGrady just got sick one day and died. Don’t say anything to Javier, but I think he will always blame himself much like I do for letting McGrady do what he did to you and then putting his blood on your hands.”

She put the last of the wash in a basket to hang in what used to be an upstairs bedroom. She kissed my forehead as she brushed passed me.

I walked out the back of the house we set up in, towards the farthest corner of the yard and I stood there crying for the first time since we got out. I cried for a good twenty minutes.

 

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I have a lot of time to think and even to listen these days. I try not to think of my old life, the one that was happy but lonely, stressful but rewarding. Most days I lay here and I think of how I can get out of the one that I am currently in.

McGrady visited me this morning reeking of stale cigarette smoke (where the hell does he keep getting them from), dirt, sweat and zombie. I was terrified for several moments that it was one ofthosevisits. But once he sat down on the foot of my cot, I knew it was one where he wanted to have one of those weird conversations with me.

“Elizabeth,” he began, is his usual authoritarian tone. I kept my eyes on the floor. “I know you don’t like me very much.”

That’s an understatement.

“But, I hope that we can at least be friends. I watched you grow up. I went to your birthdays. I was there for you and your mom when your dad left.”

Can I hit him now?

“This doesn’t have to be like it’s been for the past few months. If you show me I can trust you, you don’t have to stay here.”

Ka-ching. I look up at him. “What do you mean?”

He lit a cigarette, taking a long drag. I watched as the smoke billowed up into the hair, hanging there heavy and foreboding. “You can be moved to where your mother stays, if I can trust you.” He caught my gaze with his deep blue, penetrating eyes. It was almost a dare the way he said it, almost as if he was saying, “I’m moving you, but cross me and you will never forget it.”

I played stupid. “How would I do that?”

He was at me before I even saw him coming. His hand wrapped around my throat with such force that I could feel the air being squeezed from it. I felt the back of my head hit the stone behind me. I felt dazed and unclear, but he held my gaze.

“It’s been two fucking months. Your friend has already fulfilled her deal with my son, but you have yet to. You want your mother, you want more freedom than you better fucking give me what I want or things will get a lot worse.The world is very different now. There are no more rules, just the ones that the stronger men make. You live in my world now.” He released me, and I fell forward gagging for air.

I watched his feet as he hovered over, probably debating whether or not to kick me for good measure. My blood boiled. I have always hated men like him, but now I was at the mercy of one, one that had lived under my nose for years, ate dinner with me and my mom and had even came over my house for a drink or two when I had moved out. My hatred for him thickened, coating myself in a thick mask that bore resentment and a deep-seeded anger.

“I understand,” I choked out. I watched his feet as he left the cell. I shuddered as I heard the lock turn behind him.