Soldiers of the Damned
Author: Garrett R. Kirby

Chapter 5
First day out

Chapter 5:

-One day later-

After the riot we went home. Jerry, Jane, and Bree all stayed back at the base.
I didn't really get much sleep that night. The soft bed suddenly felt rough, and the pillow felt like a rock under my head.
"I think I'm catching a cold..." I said to Tank the next morning.
I was tired, my head hurt and my thoughts were cloudy.
"You think or you know?" Tank asked, taking a bite of the eggs he made.
"I don't know... maybe I'm just a little tired is all." I replied, then walked back out into the living room.
I sat down on the couch and flipped through channels on the TV.
"Nothing goods on." Tank called. "Unless you want to watch cartoons or something."
"Cartoons?" I asked. "I thought they stopped making those things a long time ago."
"I did too." He replied. He stood and walked out with his plate. "So, you know we're supposed to go on our first run today, right?"
"Yeah I know." I sighed. "Let's hope we don't get attacked like last night. That was... dreadful."
"Heard that man. It all sucks."
"That it does." I frowned.
"Sucks a lot..." Tank muttered under his breath.

-3 Hours Later, The Base-

"Suit up ladies!" Steven yelled.
"For the last time, I call the shots around here." Jerry scowled.
"Well I wouldn't be trying if everybody wasn't just sitting around like this!" Steven argued, gesturing to all of us.
I was in my armor, but I was watching the News with Tank and Jack. Neal was somewhere outside, most likely playing his banjo after we kicked him out.
"I'm surprised they aren't talking about us yet." Tank said.
"They were earlier." Jack replied.
I looked over at Jerry and Steven. I knew that if I had to stick with them, it was going to be a long day.
"Who am I assigned to as a partner?" Jack asked.
"Let me check." Jerry said, walking off. We had made a large board with different days of the week on it. Beside the days there was a list of names, which showed who was paired with who.
"Your with Tank." Jerry said when he returned.
I stood and walked off to the back of the base to see who I was paired with. I read through the names until I found my own.
According to the list, I was paired with Neal. Thank goodness.
Hm... Jerry must have been wanting to just get his time with Steven over with, because that was who he was paired with.
I walked back to the kitchen where Jane and Bree were drinking coffee. I could tell already that they would get along pretty good.
"Hey Randy." They both said when I entered.
"Hey girls." I replied as I walked to the coffee machine. I got a mug and filled it up.
"You don't want any sugar or cream?" Jane asked when I was walking out.
"No, I'm hoping this will wake me up." I replied, taking a long drink of it. Before I knew it the whole mug was empty.
"Somebody’s thirsty." Bree laughed.
"Not thirsty... just tired." I said, putting the mug in the sink and leaving the room.
I then headed for the door and walked outside. When I walked out I could hear Neal's banjo playing the song from the very old movie "Deliverance".
"Looks like we're partners for the day." Neal said.
"Looks like it." I replied with a smile.
Neal stood and walked off towards his jeep. "I don't know 'bout you kid, but I'm ready to go."
I walked over to the jeep and jumped in. "Yeah I guess the others will be going pretty soon as well."
Neal put the banjo in the back of his jeep and got in. He started it up and drove off. His long grey hair blew back in the wind. The top was off of his jeep, so it kept him from wearing his hat.
"Kid, I ain't gonna go easy on the first sorry soul I see. Shoot, it's all their fault  we're out here in the first place!" Neal yelled over his roaring engine.
"Just as long as the person deserves it." I replied.
A small static noise came from my mic. It was followed by Jane's voice. "You boys leave already?" She asked.
"That we did." Neal replied, holding his ear-piece a bit closer.
"Good." She said. "I don't have anything for you, but the General says he just wants you boys to keep on the look-out for any crime."
"Got it." Neal said into his earpiece. "We'll keep you updated."

After a minute of driving around Neal looked over at me. "Hey kid?" He asked. I quickly looked back over at him.
"Yeah?" I asked.
"What do you think about this whole drug thing that's comin' out?" He replied.
"The 'Cure'?"
"Yeah, that's it." He said.
"Well, I don't know what to think." I replied. "I mean, I hear these stories about the Government never tested it on humans, and only animals. If that's the case then nobody should be taking it. At least not until some brave soul steps up to be a test subject."
"Good luck finding that." Neal smirked. "I know I sure wouldn't want to be the guy."
"Hm... so what do you think about it?" I asked,
"Me? Well, I think it's all crap." Neal scowled. "It's people tryin' to play god."
I nodded. "Yeah I guess."
We drove around for about fifteen minutes I would say. Nothing was really going on until I saw some guys fighting across the street from us.
"Whoa, park the jeep." I said, jumping out. We were stopped at a red light anyways.
I ran around to the back and pulled out my rifle. I shot my pistol up in the air to get their attention.
Everybody stared at me. Not just the kids that were fighting, but the other civilians that were just out walking around.
"Break it up." I said calmly, walking closer.
The four kids separated and stood away from each other. As I grew closer the kids got further away, until they were backed into the wall. I put the pistol back in it's holder and held my rifle in both hands. "Alright, relax." I said. "I'm not going to hurt you unless you try something stupid."
"That was your one and only warnin' by the way." Neal's voice said from behind me.
I nodded when one of the kids looked at me. "That's right. Now I want you all to go home before I have to use force."
The kids nodded, all at once, and ran off in different directions. I looked back at Neal and took my helmet off.
"Yikes." I frowned, shaking my head a bit to shake out the helmet hair.
"Well, I guess that doesn't count as the first person." Neal frowned in return.
"Right." I agreed, walking back towards the jeep, which was now parked outside of a small store.
"Oh great, the news was right!" I heard a man yell. "They are taking over!"
I looked over at the man, who was pointing at us with huge, freaked out, eyes.
"It's like racism." I said to Neal.
"Ain't it though?" He replied. "I can tell this whole thing really ain't gonna be a nice walk through the South."
"That's a new one." I said, getting back in the jeep, ignoring the man's yelling.
Again, Neal climbed in and started the engine. In a few moments we were off again, searching the streets for a crime. You know, I would even take a person littering if I had to.
"Ah shoot, the city don't seem so bad!" Neal said after a long moment of silence.
I nodded. "Yeah, it's not like people are getting jumped left and right, or getting shot at."
We fell silent again. I heard Neal curse a few times under his breathe, but I figured today I should just let it go. We were kind of stressed after all, so I didn't blame him.
I could faintly hear a ringing noise over the engine. I looked down, seeing my phone was ringing.
"Oh great, who's calling?" I whispered, putting my already removed helmet in the back.
I flipped the phone open and answered. "Hello?" I asked.
"Um... yeah, is this the man that ordered a pizza with extra whipped cream on it?" The all to familiar voice asked playfully on the other end.
"Ha ha Drake." I replied, my voice overly sarcastic. At least that's what I thought.
"Ha ha indeed." He said. "You know, it took me hours just to come up with that bit... let alone teaching myself to say it with out laughing."
"It wasn't that funny." I frowned.
"Oh I know, but at least I tried. So anyways, guess who's coming to the Big Apple?"
"Well, seeing that your the one calling and asking me this, I am going to go with you." I replied.
"You know it. I'm on leave man, and I want to stay with you guys. You guys are still on leave right?" He asked.
"Well, sort of. We are supposed to be, but we still have to go out for the next few days for a new job."
"I heard about that. Quite a shame it had to happen to you guys. I'm gonna miss helping you guys out."
"No worries. We might be put back in action when this is over with." I sighed.
"Yeah, hopefully." He replied.
"Mhm..." I said. "Well, listen, I should really go. I'll talk to you when you get here, ok?"
"Sure thing." He replied. He didn't wait for me to say bye, he just hung up.

I looked over at Neal and sighed. "You think we are gonna get put back in the field eventually right?" I asked.
"Of course I do." He replied.
"I suppose one can only hope, for now at least." I said, pondering thoughts of what could be so extremely horrid that they would need to bring us back.
There were a few reasons they might want us back... none of which I wanted to happen. For instance: we could shoot civilians and convince SSP that we were NOT super cops, but that would just end in our deaths. A nuclear bomb could go off somewhere, and they would need all of us to help with clean up. A zombie infection could spread through the world. Ok, I will admit, I was starting to get a bit sadistic with my thoughts. It wasn't like I was really going to drop a bomb somewhere, or shoot innocent people.

"You know what I like 'bout you Randy?" Neal asked.
I looked over at him and shrugged. "What's that?" I asked.
"You have the golden gift of silence, and a old dog like me loves that kind of thing. Beats bein' partnered up with somebody like Tank, who don't know when to shut up." He smiled, looking as if his wrinkles were pulling his face together.
"Hm... what about the new guy, Steven?" I replied, remembering that in the short time I had seen him he had already gotten on my nerves.
Neal stopped, hitting another red light. He looked up towards the blue sky and thought for a moment in silence. "Well..." He said finally. "I guess he is even worse then Tank, and that's saying somethin'. Don't get me wrong now, it's not 'cause he don't know when to shut up, but I can tell he makes a livin' out of makin' people angry."
"There are a lot of people out there like that." I frowned. "We even saw quite a bit of them on the field."
"Oh yeah, lots of 'em." Neal nodded.

I heard before that people like to watch as the world burns. You don't realize how true this is until you see things through our eyes. We have encountered people that would die to destroy us, literally. People are insane, every single person in the world is completely and utterly out of control. Every body is different, every body is weird.
Some people get locked up for being different. Take for instance insane asylums, my views on these are people who just don't think like the world wants them to, so the world takes them away from friends and family, and they lock them up.
I never really truly understood my hatred for asylums, it's just something I seem to have had for my whole life. My childhood is extremely blurry, like it happened hundreds of years ago. I don't have pictures to show what happened, and I don't even have any living family members... at least not that I know of. I never dated, or I don't remember dating, I never had a crush, but then again, I never got to know a whole lot of girls.
The last girl I remember really getting to know, besides Jane, is Lexi, a girl Drake used to love. I couldn't tell you if they ever went out though... I just remember Drake always talked about her. He was, quite literally, obsessed.
"Randy..." Neal said, slapping me slightly.
"Huh...?" I snapped my head over in his direction. "Sorry... I zoned out."
"Randy, Jack needs our help." Neal said loudly over his roaring engine, speeding down the road. He swerved around cars like a maniac, how was it that I wasn't snapped out of my daze by this insane driver that I called a friend?
"Whoa! Slow the heck down!" I yelled, staring straight ahead with wide eyes, feeling fear rush through my body every time he almost hit another car.
"Did you not hear Jack?" Neal asked, swerving again. "He's under attack!"
"By who?" I asked, closing my eyes. I was starting to feel extremely sick and light-headed. I was never one for moving extremely fast like this.
"Beats me." Neal shrugged.
"Can anybody hear me?!" Jack yelled into the mic. "I am under attack!!! I need help!"
"We're on our way." Neal said I opened my eyes and saw we were pulling onto a street where a huge crowd of people were gathered. They were all piled into the center of the road, like a bunch of sheep in their den. Some were holding signs, others were holding weapons like bats, knives, even a few guns.
"What in the world...?" I whispered. I looked over as Neal jumped out of the car, his rifle in hand. I followed, grabbing my helmet and slipping it on.

"Look! There's more of 'em!" Somebody yelled. A large group of the people turned and gave us extremely dirty looks. Curse words were yelled among people chanting "Make peace not war! Make peace not war!". This was terrifying, but I couldn't help but think of one little thing: where was Jack? I noticed the half of the crowd that was still gathered around something I could not see. Jack had to be in there, and we were going to have to stop these people and get him out of here.
"Jack!" I yelled, charging at the people. Over the yelling and screaming of the mob was a gunshot, and almost right when the sound was heard, a bullet hit me in the chest.
I fell back, a bit winded. Bullet-proof armor always helped in these cases. Neal was the one that would have to stay back. If he was hit in the head, then it was game over for my favorite southern friend.
"What's going on?" Jerry asked behind me. I looked back to see him and Steven walking towards Neal, Steven was already aiming at the crowd with a large, silver gun. It had a strange red light on it's end instead of a barrel, like most other guns. On the top of the gun was a large scope, so I could tell it was a sniper of some sort.
"Hey, gun down man." Jerry sighed, pushing the gun away from the crowd.
Another shot was fired at me. The bullet flew passed my head and hit the ground behind me. I looked back at the man and grabbed my pistol, which I then pulled out, aimed, and fired.
The man spun around as the lead hit him in the shoulder, then fell to the ground.
"Randy!" Jerry yelled, looking over at me.
"He shot first, it was in self-defence." I replied, standing.
Jerry nodded and looked back at the crowd. "Any sign of him?" He asked.
"None." I sighed. "We need to stop the mob."
We all looked back at the mob as we heard Jack's ear-piercing scream break through the yelling and chanting.
"Oh dear..." Steven whispered. "Sounds like some body's angry."
The crowd was backing away slowly, and there, in the center of it all, was Jack... his helmet ripped off, and his burned face showing. Jack's worst nightmare had just become reality, and I suddenly felt we were in more trouble then ever.

 

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