By John Keenan
The dead are coming back to life and feeding on the flesh of the living. No one really knows how it started. Most think it happened as a result of a government experiment. A bio-hazard leak. Those of us at HQ think differently. We think it was an ill-managed Cobra exercise. Mindbender most likely playing God.
What we do know is there are two basic types of zombies. The first type was dubbed molasses; slow and lethargic, they can usually be found in packs close to where they passed away. The molasses are easily out run, but without a firearm or heavy blunt object they can be hard to put down. One attacks, then another, then another. The second zombie type is referred to as speedies. Speedies can run-like-the-wind. They donít need to breathe and their hearts do not pump, but their legs do. They have been spotted either alone or in groups far distances from where they died. Speedies are the most dangerous of the two. Even one can be deadly if you donít have a firearm.
The first time a speedy was seen it was on I-95 South. Sure-Fire was undercover as a State Trooper when his radar gun caught a man running down the interstate at 36 miles-an-hour. (Most athletes can manage 23 mph, maybe 24 mph if theyíre really good.)
Sure-Fire caught up to the runner, who seemed to be clawing at the air. His shin a sickly green.
Sure-Fire: The Interstateís no place for a run. Think you might try-
The runner pounces of the hood of the car.
Sure-Fire stops and gets out.
Sure-Fire: What the hellís wrong with you?
The runner, wearing a bio-hazard suit lunges towards Sure-Fire.
Sure-Fire draws his side arm and fires. The bullet hits the runner in the stomach and he falls to the ground.
Sure-Fire goes to the carís radio.
The runner rises up.
Sure-Fire: This is car 244. I need an ambulance or a medivac stat.
The runner takes a chunk out of Sure-Fires neck!
Voice over radio: Car 244 we are requesting additional information. Do you copy?
(Close up) a Hospital with a light on in one window.
It was Road Block who arrived at the hospital first.
Vague reports of the recently deceased returning to life were filtering in.
Road Block was also informed that Sure-Fire was not going to make it.
Road Block didnít believe the rumors about dead folks breathing.
Roadblock arrived just after Sure-Fire flat-lined.
A white sheet covered Sure-Fires body.
Roadblock: He died from a bite?
Dr: I would say he was poisoned, but we found no traces.
Roadblock: Did you look?
Dr: Of course we did. Iíve never seen anything like this. Whatever it was it spread quickly. Iím sorry I donít have any better answers.
Roadblock: Me too.
Dr. Iíll leave you to your goodbyes.
Road Block was about to leave when the sheet moved.
Sure-Fire sat up. Only this was not his teammate . . .this was a zombie!
Road Block draws his pistol
Road Block makes the sign of the cross: Iím sorry.
A lone bullet is discharged.
Blood, brain matter splatter on the wall.
Road Block: God, help us all.
He now believed in zombies.
Lifeline, our medic turned scientist, got a tip about a facility in East Rutherford and put a six man team together to check it out.
The team included, Outback, Heavy Duty, law, Backblast, Roadblock and Lifeline himself.
The drive there was quiet as we listened to news bulletins . . .
Voice over radio: If you have a working phone you are urged to call the emergency number we just gave you. This is the greatest potential for saving lives. FEMA or the NJ Domestic Security Preparedness task force will pick you up, and deliver you to a secured recovery center.
Voice over radio: Emergency medical professionals are ready to treat any wounded. Also, properly trained, board certified, psychologists are available to answer any questions.
Voice over radio: FEMA, in conjunction with The American Red Cross, The Salvation Army and The United Way are offering protected shelters in the following locations . . . Giant Stadium, the Teaneck Army, the Jersey City Youth Center-
The Zombies we did encounter were molasses. They sounded like children crying for something they couldnít have. Moaning and whining for warm flesh.
We were protected from them in the Night-Rhino.
Heavy Duty wanted to shoot them, but there was no point. The gunshots might only draw more. And they were to slow to catch us.
Voice over radio: Pets are not allowed into any of the secured shelters, for health and space reasons. If you do not have a working phone and can not get to a secured shelter, we recommend boarding up all windows and doors.
The Night-Rhino was parked at the edge of the facility so it wouldnít get stuck somewhere inside the maze of small office buildings and factories.
Our group continued on foot.
Backblast: What took you so long Outback?
Outback had been uncharacteristically late to the meeting point at the Night-Rhino.
Outback: I had to shave.
Backblast: So, why didnít you shave?
Outback: I did, Not my beard. Everything else though.
Heavy Duty: Why?
Outback: I donít know the next time Iím gonna see a shower. So, the less body hair Iím carrying, the less odor Iím carrying. Those thing may be attracted by scent.
Outback: Even my ass.
Lifeline: Cut the shit. Remember, if you see any speedies shoot Ďem in the face. If you canít get a clear head shot take a leg out. That should buy you some time.
Roadblock: So, whoís your Mr. X that told you about this place?
Lifeline: If I told you his name then he wouldnít be Mr. X anymore. Youíre better off not knowing Ďtil we meet up with him.
Backblast: Heís coming here?
Lifeline: Yep. Should already be here.
Heavy Duty: Whatíre we hoping to find?
Lifeline: Answers. Something concrete to help stop this. Outback, Roadblock- scout the area. And be careful. We need a clear path to building seven.
Roadblock: You got it.
This was a scientific mission Lifeline put together. Everyone respected him for it. We all wanted to find a way to stop the madness that had become a part of our daily lives.
Roadblock and Outback cautiously made their way around the facility.
Outback: No sign of any of those things.
Roadblock: Nope. I donít hear any neither. And thereís number seven.
Cobra troops are seen in front of the door.
Outback: Cobraís got it guarded . . .should have guessed.
Roadblock on a phone: We got a clean path to building seven. Only thereís a few snakes keeping whateverís inside a secret. You want us to take Ďem out? Over.
Back at the Night-Rhino-
Lifeline on a phone: Negative, Roadblock. The rest of us will join you and see if we canít talk this out. Theyíre human survivors like we are. Over and out.
Outback: I count four troops. Heavily armed. They got cover and this could get messy if we have to engage them.
Lifeline: Okay, letís see if we can avoid that.
Lifeline: Cobra troops! My name is Lifeline. I am a member of the G.I. Joe team. We need to get into building seven. I just want to talk.
Behind a dumpster and sandbags-
Cobra troop: Funny! We just want to shoot you!
A bullet just misses hitting Lifeline.
Lifeline: Thereís no need to kill, we should be helping one another to stay alive and find a cure-
Behind the dumpster-
Cobra troop: We got our orders to protect this building at all costs. Leave now and you can take your ammo with you, unspent!
Heavy Duty: Ah, fuck this! (Starts to fire saw gun).
Door to building seven- Thumps can be heard.
Behind the dumpster-
Cobra troop: Thatís fine with us. (Returns fire).
Door to building seven- Thumps can be heard. Even louder now.
Lifeline: This is ridiculous! We just need to get inside!
Behind the dumpster-
Cobra troop: Not going to happen!
Shots are fired back and forth.
Door to building seven- Thumps can be heard.
Law: Whatís in there?
Lifeline: I donít know for sure. Thatís the truth.
Door to building seven- Thumps can be heard.
Backblast: Roadblock, take out the lock on the entrance door.
Backblast: If what I think is behind it, weíll solve our Cobra problems real fast.
Bullets scar up the door and it opens.
Zombies haul-ass out!
Lifeline: Oh, God
The zombies attack the Cobra troops.
The cobra troops get a few shots off, but are overrun.
One Cobra trooper gets pulled apart- guts and intestines spill out.
Backblast: Iíll handle it. (Tosses a grenade. It blows up).
Body parts, including a head lands near the Joe team.
Roadblock kicks the head.
Heavy Duty moves towards the dumpster.
The dumpster lids springs open.
A zombie pops up! Arms flailing. But, it can go nowhere- trapped in the dumpster.
Heavy Duty sees the zombie is no threat: No you didnít! Trying a sneak attack. Iím no snack for your stuck, broke, decaying ass.
Heavy Duty takes a metal plate and crushes the zombies skull.
Heavy Duty tosses the blood soaked metal plate.
The zombie falls inside the dumpster.
Lifeline: Our contact should be inside, waiting in room 129. Letís look alive men . . .and stay alive.
The door is open. Heavy Duty, outback, and Life-line enter building seven.
Bodies lie on the floor.
The smell of rotting flesh fills the air.
Heavy Duty approaches one that is on itís side, facing away from him.
Lifeline: Be careful.
Backblast enters the building.
Roadblock stops just inside the doorway.
Law is just outside.
Smoke, from the grenade blast, fills the air.
A burnt zombie gets up from where the grenade went off.
A second one stirs.
Roadblock takes a step further inside.
Heavy Duty rolls the body over- the man is dead- eaten by zombies!
Outside the first burnt zombie reaches law. It pulls him down.
Law: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaa! (Heís been bitten!)
Roadblock turns to see it.
The second zombie is now on law- biting him.
Roadblock: Shit! (He hurries and hits one of the burnt zombies with his gun, knocking it back.)
Backblast joins Roadblock and shoots the other burnt zombie with a pistol.
Roadblock shoots the first burnt zombie- bloody mess!
Law: Iím not gonna become one of them.
Law shoots himself.
Blood and brain matter spray the wall.
Law slumps over.
Backblast: Oh, fuck!
Lifeline: We have to stop this. We have to get to room 129 and get some answers.
Backblast: This better be worth it.
Groans can he heard from down the hall.
Outback: Keep it together, people.
Room 113- The door creeks open as the team approaches.
Inside the doorway- A molasses zombie!
Roadblock shoots its knees and the zombie falls.
Roadblock crushes its skull between the door and the jam.
Roadblock: Die . . . you fucker.
Zombie speedies come around the corner.
Backblast is taken down. As he falls he shoots Heavy Duty .
Lifeline: Look out!
Roadblock opens fire killing Backblast, Heavy Duty and several zombies. He stops when he runs out of bullets.
Bodies on the floor- blood, guts, brain matter.
(Survivors- Lifeline, Roadblock, and Outback).
Roadblock drops his gun and sits down: Oh, Jesus.
Lifeline: Donít think about it. We need you with a clear head.
Roadblock (with a blank look in his eyes): We canít win. Too many. Weíre all dead . .. All dead.
Growls from down the hall.
Outback: Where are they coming from?
Lifeline: I donít know, but they know weíre here and theyíre ravenous.
Zombies come into the scene fast!
Roadblock grabs a sledgehammer near him: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaahh!
Roadblock slams the sledge into the skull of one zombie.
Outback stabs another zombie in the ear.
The sledge is stuck and roadblock tries to free it, but canít.
Another zombie attacks roadblock, biting his arm.
Outback tries to help and Lifeline stops him.
Lifeline: We have to go.
Outback: Weíre gonna leave him?
Lifeline: Heís already lost mentally. Heís no good to us.
Roadblock fights off the zombies.
Even a six-foot-nine-inch man is no match for the living dead.
Roadblock punches his fist into the skull of a zombie.
Several zombies bite at Roadblock.
Outback and Lifeline stand in front of room 129.
Lifeline: This is it. We can put this to rest.
Outback: We hope.
Lifeline opens the door
Firefly stands with a weapon pointed at the Joes.
Firefly: Shut the door and lock it. Quickly!
Outback: What the hell is going on?
Outback pulls a gun on Firefly.
Lifeline: Firefly contacted HQ just before it was overrun by the zombies. He can help us. Thatís what he said.
Outback: We lost four men for this? To meet up with this piece of shit?
Firefly: Hey come on now. I want to see this end as bad as you do, survival-boy.
Outback: Itís gonna end . . . for you, if you donít start talkiní.
Lifeline: Everybody calm down. Firefly, Iím here like you asked. Whatís going on?
Firefly: Whatís going on, started right here in this room. It started because of greed and deception. I contacted you because I realized it had gone too far. It got out of control. The Dead End virus. Wasnít suppose to happen like this.
Outback: Like what?
Lifeline: Outback, can you lower that thing? Firefly went behind Cobraís back to try and help.
Outback lowers his gun: Heís only helping because he knows itís too late. Heís only helping himself. As always.
Lifeline: Whatever the case heís helping us now too. And I for one want to live to see tomorrow. Go on Firefly, what happened in this room?
Firefly: Cobra developed a virus, designated the Dead End Virus. Once it entered the blood stream it could reanimate the dead. The only problem with it was control- there was none. The reanimated individual could not be controlled by anything or anyone, including itself. Cobra had spent millions and was preparing for a huge financial set-back when Destro came up with the idea of marketing the Dead End virus as a weapon of mass destruction.
Lifeline: It certainly is that.
Firefly: Unleash the Dead End virus and what nation would stop you from destroying the infected? Everyone would be so scared, theyíd line up to kill your enemies.
Lifeline: Infect them and look like a hero wiping them out.
Firefly: Bingo! Only, Cobra couldnít use it. Theyíd be the first targets of suspect.
Lifeline: So, who purchased it?
Firefly: The U.S. government was set to. Destro didnít even break a sweat pushing the Dead End virus. But, the weapons research and development branch wanted to see it in action first. There was a demonstration, thatís where it went wrong. The test subject, a deceased bio-engineer, bit two of the lab techs and escaped. Cobra tried to quarantine the building, but it was too late. Thirty-six hours was all it took to spread world-wide.
Outback: Why bother to still guard the entrance then?
Firefly: Heh, heh. Probably because no one bothered to tell the guards not to.
Outback: Sick devotion.
Lifeline: So, how can we stop it?
Firefly: I was hoping you could tell me that.
Firefly places a case on the table.
Firefly: Itís a sample of the Dead End virus. Cobra never developed a cure.
Lifeline: My lab is trashed.
Firefly: Thereís one down the hall. All we have to do is get there.
Firefly to Outback: Up for it?
Outback: Letís do it. Yo, Joe.
Firefly opens the door and gets knocked back by zombies!
Outback: Shit! Didnít even hear them.
Outback shoots one in the head.
Firefly from the floor- tosses a rope around the legs of a zombie and pulls it down.
Firefly drives a screwdriver through the zombies head.
The zombie is impaled and dies.
The group moves into the hall only to hear the growls of more zombies!
Lifeline: I think we should head back to the main lobby. . . . and regroup.
Lifeline turns and bumps into- Zombie Roadblock (Green and bleeding with chunks of flesh ripped from his body).
Zombie Roadblock bites Life-Line in the face.
Firefly sprays the area with an uzi.
Zombies, zombie Roadblock and Life-Line fall down- dead.
Outback: Weíre fucked! What are we going to do without
Lifeline? Weíre so fucked.
Firefly: Youíre fucked. Iím outta here.
Firefly runs down the hall.
Outback empties his weapon in the direction that Firefly ran.
Zombies show up.
Outback fires at them. He runs out of bullets and starts slashing at the zombies with a knife.
Outback retreats back into room 129.
Outback: No, no . . .no!
Outback wakes in his bed at HQ.
Roadblock from the doorway: Yes, yes. Bad dream?
Roadblock: Well, Duke wants you for a mission briefing. Weíre going to scope out an island, supposedly Krakatoa, for Cobra activity.
Outback: That actually sounds good to me. As long as that's all that's resurrected.