Continued from 8/366 – The Darkness Below (Cont.)
Morn’s eyes flickered open, exhaustion washed through him as he pulled his face off the wet blanket under his face. His legs were stiff from hanging off the edge of the bed, and something was irritating him about waking up. He felt too tired for a full night’s rest. He pulled himself up on the straw mattress and turned to his side to face the window. The light flickered through the window.
The sun doesn’t flicker, he thought.
A scream rang out in the street outside. Everything about the peculiar nature of why he had woken up instantly faded. He had heard a scream. Celeste’s scream.
Morn jumped out of bed, feeling the room spin as his feet landed on the floor. He flung his door open and sped down the stairs, throwing the front door open. Outside was alight with flames burning several of the nearby buildings. His heart was already racing as he watched two zombies crouched in the street over another. No. It wasn’t another zombie, it was wearing armor and flailing wildly against them. It was a guard.
“Morn! The zombies are attacking the town,” Celeste yelled from her window.
Morn ran up to the guard under attack and kicked one of the zombies in the head as hard as he could, but it wasn’t enough. The zombie didn’t move except to turn toward him. The rotting flesh around its face covered in blood.
“Shit,” Morn muttered as he backed away.
The zombie rose to its feet, giving Morn a clear view of the guard. He was alive and was still fighting the one left on him.
“Behind you!” Celeste called out.
Morn looked down and saw the short sword that belonged to the guard lying in the dirt. He quickly picked it up and swiped at the corpse. The blade slashed across the midsection of the thing causing black fluid to spill from it. The smell was easily the worse thing Morn had ever smelled, forcing him to force back his gag reflex.
The zombie swung at him, slamming hard into his side. The pain exploded through him just before he realized the crunching sound was his ribs. He doubled over in pain, holding the sword out between him and the creature as he backed away as fast as he could.
“Come on, Morn!” Celeste said as she grabbed his arm. “We have to go!”
“We have to help the-” Morn stopped seeing the now motionless guard being feasted on by the zombie that was over him.
“He’s gone, we have to get out of here,” Celeste said.
Morn gritted his teeth and shook his head.
“But we have to-”
“We have to survive this,” Celeste said, pulling him away as the zombie advanced once more. “We have to get out of the town. Maybe there are more guards at the wall.”
Celeste spun him behind her as a flash of silver caught the light. The dagger deep into the zombie, severing its hand as it reached for her. It screamed at her and swung with the other arm. Celeste ducked quickly and lashed out again, this time cutting the tendons under its arm. The arm fell limp as it cried out once again.
The zombie on the guard turned slowly, looking at them with the same anger and hunger as the one on top of them.
“Let’s go,” Morn said, swinging his sword but missing the zombie, “You’re right.”
“I’m always right. Our parents would want us-”
“Dad!” Morn said, “where’s my father?”
“I don’t know, but I’m sure he’s fine. Let’s get back to the wall where we might get some help,” she said.
“No, he works in the fields keeping the zombies on task. If he’s not home, he’s in danger,” Morn said, “I’m not going to the wall, I’m going to the fields.”
“That’s on the other side of the town. We won’t survive getting past all those zombies,” she countered.
“What if they don’t see us?” Morn asked.
“What do you mean?” she asked as they backed up more, keeping their distance from the now two zombies pursuing them.
“Follow me,” Morn said as he grabbed her hand and ran back around Celeste’s house.
They moved quickly around the house to the back and to the alley where Morn peeked around the corner. He saw the first zombie lurch past, followed closely by the second.
“They are stupid, they can’t track us. If we can stay out of their line of sight, and stay quiet, we can get through,” Morn said.
“You’re insane, Morn. There are literally hundreds of them between here and the fields,” Celeste said.
“Yes, but there are also the monks. At least a few dozen initiates, and the Old Ones too,” he said. “I’m sure they aren’t having any issues keeping them back.”
“I don’t know about this,” Celeste said as the injured zombie came around the corner slowly.
Morn moved toward it and swung at the same time Celeste lashed out with her dagger. Celeste’s strike hit the creature in the chest, sinking deep into it. Morn’s blade sank deep into the neck, and it fell to its knees before falling toward them letting out a final death rattle.
“I don’t think we have much of choice right now,” Morn said. “Where’s your father?”
“He ran out earlier when the fires started. He told me to stay in the house when he left,” she said. “He’s captain, though. He’s not going to have a problem with a few zombies.”
“I think we should go to the monks,” Morn said.
A guard ran into view, skidding to a halt when she saw them. “What are you two doing out here, get inside now!”
The second zombie came into view a second later, its arms raised to pummel the guard. Morn opened his mouth to warn her, but, in a flash, she pulled the great sword from her back and made two quick swipes, cutting the zombie into three pieces.
“Have you seen Floran G’Lair?” Morn asked. “He’s my father. He was working in the fields today.”
“I haven’t seen him, but I need you two to get back inside before more zombies show up,” the guard said, “I’ll go look for him, and, if I can, get him back to you. For now, please, stay inside. Got it?”
“Come on,” Celeste said, “You can come to my house so we’re not alone.”
Morn gripped the sword in his hand tighter. The adrenaline still pumping through him. “Fine.”
continued 10/366 – Night Terrors (Cont.)