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Fiction – Ruth’s Story #45 Conducting the first raid while the convoy is in the barricade on Lake City Way

June 15, 2012

Stepping into the dark, both men in front of me pull down and activate their NVGs; a pale green glow illuminates their faces. They take a knee causing Nikola, and I to do the same, pausing to allow our eyes to adjust to both the darkness we are entering and the glow of the NVGs in our face.

While we are kneeling I have an opportunity to study lab coat zombie. Before something snacked on her face, and I gave her a 9mm facial, she was an average height mature Asian woman. She has a light almond complexion; gray streaked pageboy cut black hair and high proud cheek bones that now trail shredded strips of red, raw flesh.

Lab coat zombie’s once white coat is now blotchy red, with a large stain around her midsection where most of her intestines were ripped out. There is some embroidered writing in red on her left shoulder, but I cannot read it from here.

Sutton and Randy pull the zombie closer and then search her pockets. Lab coat zombie’s pocket reveals a small tube of red lip gloss, a couple of ball point pens, a small chrome money clip with a few bills tucked in it, a ring of three keys and a small black ball of something tightly wrapped in clear plastic film. Everything is dropped on lab coat zombie’s chest with the exception of the small black ball which goes in Randy’s pocket.

The two men shove and drag lab coat zombie’s body out of the way to the left of the secret door. The effort causes both men to sweat profusely. After getting lab coat zombie moved both men take a knee and gulp water from clear, blue and red soft Platypus collapsible water bottles. When the Platypus water bottles are empty the men roll them up and tuck them in a pocket.

After about a five minute kneeling break, Sutton and Randy step into the dark void. Sutton goes left while Randy steps to the right one step. I step into the formerly secret room and take a knee as does Nikola behind me. Nikola is still watching our back, but has not activated his NVGs. He is keeping his natural night vision, the store lit by the pale moonlight.

Nikola’s actions are smart if we were facing a thinking opponent who might possess flash bang grenades. The tactical advantage of Nikola’s delay in activating his NVGs might provide our rear guard a better opportunity to spot trouble.

As I continue to ponder Nikola’s actions, I see that Sutton and Randy are doing a careful visual sweep of the room. Both are using infrared (IR) flashlights to sweep the room. The IR light is invisible to the naked eye, and apparently does not disturb the 18 zombies standing within the room either.

Kneeling in the doorway, I feel a slight chilly breeze from behind me. I smell gasoline and either natural gas or propane strongly in the once secret room.

While considering this new development, Nikola who still watches our back, whispers so softly a single word that I barely heard him.

“Comrades.”

As I turn to see what Nikola is talking about, I hear the crunch of glass under boots and see two young, former soldiers enter the business both dressed in the current issue battle fatigues. The two new arrivals are wearing NVGs upon their PASGT helmets but still tucked up in the storage position, using the bright moonlight to see.

Both men carry empty military duffle bags. A typical M4 hang off their backs muzzle down, and both carry holstered suppressed Beretta M9s. Each has a extraordinarily large knife vertically strapped to the left side of their web gear, handle down.

Both soldiers take a knee next to Nikola and open the military duffle bags. Each pulls a current copy of the old Vietnam-era anti-personal hatchet from the sack and hands one to Nikola and I. Looking at mine I see it is made by SOG and looks fairly new. He also hands Nikola, and I a pair of desert tan somewhat scuffed knee pads.

The young soldier kneeling closest to me, who looks Eurasian says very softly “The Sargent Major said you guys are going to be needing these hatchets. He also ordered more knee pads, seems you and Nikola forgot to put some on. He and the First Sargent has their own hatchets already, but you guys might need these. We are also here to help haul stuff back to the convoy.”

I reach up and grab the young Asian soldier by his helmet. Whispering in his ear I tell him “Grab the entire cat anti flea shampoo you can find.”

He starts to pull back so I tighten my grip “Wait a moment. Do not grab any of the dog shampoo as you cannot use it on people. The feline shampoo can be used on people to help get rid of ticks, fleas and lice.”

“Doc gave us a list of drugs like Ketamine to look for, as well. You’re Ruth the Israeli aren’t you?”

“I think someone stole all the drugs already, and yes, I am she.”

“I am Kim nice to meet you.”

We briefly clasp right hands, and I pat Kim on the shoulder as he and his partner get up. Both men remaining hunched over or on one knee as they start searching the business occasionally picking up an item and putting it in one of the O.D. green duffels which they carry.

I see the two men occasionally hold something up to the light trying to read labels. At least they are smart enough not to toss carelessly the discarded items back on the floor. They carefully set discarded items down out of the way where no one is likely to trip over them. Either the two young men are experienced at this sort of search, or they have been well briefed.

Nikola and I put the knee pads on cringing as we rip the Velcro fastening strips open. Both he and I sit on our asses to put the knee pads on. Looking around as I am putting the knee pads on, I see the zombies in the room probably heard the Velcro but were unsure where the sound came from.

I see the zombie’s heads in the room swivel as they hear the noise. Definitely visually queued.

Randy kneels down beside Nikola and me. I notice that Randy has a large, heavy bladed hatchet with a wicked looking spike in his hands, which causes me to miss my fire axe a little. Randy speaks in a soft whisper.

“Nik, please watch this door like you are. I am not sure the zombies have realized there is a lot more light in here suddenly with the secret door open but just in case a zombie tries to leave stop it. This room is a large meth lab, in case you missed it there is gasoline and propane vapors in the air and God knows what else. Do not use a gun as, however, remote the possibility, it might ignite the fumes in this room. Use a knife or a hatchet.”

With that, he rejoins Sutton and begins to search the room. Occasionally I hear the wet crunch as one of the men hack a zombie down with a vicious blow to the head. Most of the time, the men are using the spikes on the hatchets striking at the temporal lobes and the base of the neck.

A slight upwards blow to the base of the cranium at the top of the neck sufficient to sink the spike completely into the skull causes the zombie to go immediately boneless and drop dead. Unfortunately, this is somewhat messy work as every struck zombie causes a small fountain of blood to erupt from the impact which looks black in the NVGs. I hope the men are being careful not to get the nasty gore in their mouths, but thankfully their eyes are shielded by the NVGs.

The zombies in the dark stand perfectly still their head occasionally moving in response to the noises the two men make. I wonder how long the zombies have been standing still like this in the dark. Did these people die while making meth and then out of habit stand by the tables or where they infected and then died while making meth? I guess we will never know.

The sound of rustling papers to my left causes me to look that way. I see a legless zombie crawling on the floor towards me. If it were not for the noisy papers, which the zombie crawled through, it might have snuck up on me unnoticed.

From a kneeling position, I turn facing the crawler squarely. I stretch my arms out holding the composite graphite antipersonnel hatchet handle in a tight two handed grip. I patiently wait until the crawler is within reach before I lift the hatchet in a vertical two-handed grip over my head as high as I can reach.

When the crawler gets close enough I bring the hatchet down as hard as I can striking the zombie in the middle of his head. With the now familiar wet crunching sound, the flat black hatchet blade sinks all the way to the black graphite handle in the zombies head. A little blood squirted around when I sunk the hatchet in its head, but none of the gore got on me thankfully.

The crawler immediately drops dead at my knees twitching a few times. I take a quick look around and see that Randy and Sutton have killed our evaded all of the zombies in the room. Pulling the dripping gory hatchet from crawler zombie’s head emits a wet sucking noise that is so gross.

I wonder how I am going to clean my bloody hatchet. I remember a story I once heard about someone named Lizzie Borden.

I take a few moments to check crawler zombie’s corpse to see if he had anything of worth on him when he died. Before someone dined on his legs and most of his intestines, crawler zombie was an average height slender Asian male I guess of Korean or Chinese ancestry. I can see the remains of several brilliantly colored tattoos on his chest and arms indicating by my limited knowledge of such things that he might have been a member of an Asian gang.

A quick search of crawler zombie’s body reveals a crushed and blood soaked pack of menthol cigarettes, an orange plastic disposable lighter, an empty black leather pistol shoulder holster, and a leather magazine pouch containing two Sig clips 9mm full of hollow point ammo.

I discard the blood soaked cigarettes, but the disposable lighter goes in my pants pocket. I tuck the two Sig magazines in my Scottevest jacket to deal with later. I considered thumbing the ammo out of the two magazines, but the noise might attract unwanted attention.

Randy and Sutton (Aka Laurel and Hardy) trot back to Nikola’s and my position their pockets bulging. Kneeling between Nikola and me, Randy starts to speak.

“Ok we have picked this room clean. There are quite a few hazardous materials in here that I do not want to leave lying about. Since this building is free standing, it does not pose a threat to other buildings and might limit the spread of a fire. I have set a small timed explosive charge on one of the almost empty propane cylinders. When we get clear or if we get in a jam, I will press the button which starts the five minute timer. The explosion and fire should capture the attention of the zombies and give us an excellent opportunity to escape.”

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5 Comments
  1. jmguide@walla.com permalink

    You are successfully meshing her thoughts, gear details and action in this segments I think you’ve got the mix down pat. Now how about you mix it up with a large sized post every few segments.

    I know, the contents of the rucks will be revealed in the future. =)

    • Thank you I will get to the rucks pretty soon. Ruth wanted to get into them but had to wait for a better location.

  2. Tim permalink

    More please

  3. Craig W permalink

    Excellent detail. A meth lab, with folks in lab coats? That’s a good one.

    • I cut it a bit off in the last post, but the white lab coat folks are from the vet supply front for the meth lab.

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