“Pick your shots,” Brown yelled. “Let the boards do most of the work!”
“Yeah,” Spencer agreed. “Let these rotters waste their own asses.” He dared to grin as zombies slid off the angled boards in two and threes. Their bodies made horrid bursting sounds when they splattered on the boulders below. The plywood bent and bounced, but the bolted ropes they had used to secure them to the pickups looked like they were holding.
The sheer mass of Walkers in Haeds’ undead army pushed a few past the four-by-eights and they would tumble onto the bridge before them. The ones that made it past the trucks received the majority of their shots.
“Hold the line,” Spencer said under his breath.
Rollie remained in his wheelchair, close to the south end of the narrow bridge. “Hey guys, it already looks like we have already waxed at least a hundred of the fu-”
A yell interrupted him as Heads suddenly flung himself forward. He slammed his back into Kimberly and she screamed as her body hit the narrow stone railing. “Help,” she managed to get out, but then she was already falling over the rail.
Spencer looked on, feeling helpless, as Brown dropped his AK and leapt at the toppling woman. But then he had his own problems.
Haeds dodged through the rest of them. The madman had come at their backs, since they were all facing the undead, and he made it past them before he could be stopped. With a complete disregard for his own handcuffed body, Haeds flung his shoulder at the plywood to the right. It had been secured well, but before they could stop him, he had torn one of the bolts right through the wood. With only one of the upper corners supporting the four by eight, the remaining bolt squealed under the weight of the zombies climbing at them.
Haeds went to shoulder it again, but Spencer and Flitch were charging in. Mel shouted. “Flitch, don’t get so damn close to the Walkers. Just back off and let me shoot the motherfucker!”
Spencer couldn’t be sure if Kimberly was safe or if Mel might be able to take a shot, he did know that Devon’s shotgun filling his hands and he happily smashed Haeds square in the face with the butt of the weapon. Haeds stumbled back into the pickup with a shattered nose, but his suffering wasn’t over yet, for Flitch landed a right uppercut into the villain’s gut.
It could have been a coincidence, but when Haeds’ head whipped back, it hit the plywood and with a loud rattle it slid into the canyon taking five zombies with it. At once the mass of Walkers pushed the front ranks forward. Some zombies followed their predecessors and tumbled off the pickup into the canyon. Theirs fund purchase and clambered toward the breathers.
As the groping hands of the dead reached him, Haeds’ hysterical laughing rose over their moans. “Ha! You idiots won’t be able to reach me now. You won’t be able to-”
Gunfire interrupted his boast and a red flower of blood appeared on his right shoulder. Other shots rang out, but between Haeds ducking low and the swarming zombies, Spencer didn’t see another bullet land home. As Spencer backpedaled away from the zombies, he saw that Anna was the one who had shot him and she screamed into the face of the approaching horde.
“You evil freak! You evil freak. I’ll never shot you in the head. Become one of you dead, you perverted beast. You’re a villain, a horror. Die, die, DIE!”
Her gun went empty as Spencer reached her. “Get out of here. Go!”
Spencer barely dared to look at what happened to Kimberly, but when he gazed that direction, he saw Brown putting her under Wart’s care. Brown and Spencer returned their attentions to the dead.
But it was too late.
Flitch had remained behind, despite Mel’s shouting. From what Spencer could tell, the lanky man might have been trying to get a bead on Haeds through the growing mass of zombies.
Mel yelled, “Get out of there, man!”
Right as Spencer was moving in to help, a zombie grabbed a fist full of Flitch’s hair from behind. Mel blew that one’s head off, but it had slowed Flitch enough that two zombies grabbed onto him. A female’s mouth lanced on his arm and came away with a red tear of flesh.
“Oh no,” Mel gasped, but all sounds were quickly drowned out by Flitch’s screaming.
Wart and the women ran back to help, but Spencer waved them away. “It’s too late. Don’t let his death be in vain. Just go.”
The group had parked their vehicles a hundred yards away, they would be safe.. Looking back, Spencer burned with anger. “That bastard escaped.”
Brown stopped pushing Rollie and addressed him. “Yeah, but with a wound like that and handcuffed he won’t make it.”
The desert winds picked up, blowing the stench of the stumbling dead toward them. “That’s not what I’m worried about. What about Devon and my sister? When they return here, instead of all the people we rescued from the Rips, all they’ll find is an army of the dead.
A group of three Walkers forced the five of them to slow down just outside of the door to the library, which hopefully held Haeds’ arsenal. Sheriff Dells was still rushing up to aid Becca whose aggressive behavior had lead her to being their point.
The first one charging Becca was rewarded with a baseball bat to the teeth. She yelled as they bounced off the dirty tiles likes a handful of jagged snow. The second moved in at her back, but Dells was there and nearly took off its head with a swing of his bat. Emily took out the third with one of her few remaining bullets.
Devon stayed more worried about what they’d left behind than what lay before them, for nearly a hundred zombies crowded into the narrow hallway and toppled the flimsy tables aside. Like a rotting flood of flesh, they poured down the corridor after them. He yelled, “Get moving. They’re coming. We don’t have any time!”
Becca’s mad dash continued and she flung open the library door and rushed in without any hesitation.Devoncould just hear her shout, “It’s this way,” over the sea of moaning throats closing in on him.
Becca, Dells, and Fosters made it through the door and dashed ahead.Devonand Emily held up. “Em, this door has no lock!”Devonyelled. “Can you find anything to help keep it shut?”
Already half a dozen zombies pulled at it from the other side. Emily hurried to search through the nearby librarian desk. Then suddenly screamed, “Devonlook out!”
He felt icy hands grabbing into his shoulder and the rank breath of death in his nostrils a moment before theWalker’s head exploded and splashed his face with rotten gore.
“Devonthere’s nothing here!”
“Then we are just going to have to go for it, because I can’t hold this shut much longer. Can you see the others?”
“Yes, but there is a problem.”
“Holy hell, what is it?”
“They are clustered under some raised second floor, but the normal way up there has been destroyed!”
“There must be a rope ladder or something. We need to get one of us up there and then they can drop it down.”
“Okay, but one other thing.” He could hear the panic in her voice. “Devon, that was my last bullet.”