The surplus store was quiet and empty. There were artifacts from all of the great wars in American history. Most of the stuff was junk; old uniforms, helmets, boots, the occasional knife. There were a few old machine guns hanging from the walls, but must have been fifty years old. The placed seemed like it had been abandoned months ago. There was a thick layer of dust covering everything.
The most interesting thing was the man sitting in the chair behind the counter. He was dressed in full Army fatigues and had long hair and a beard. Exactly the type of guy you expected to be working in one of these stores. He had chains of bullets draped across his chest and a rifle lying across his lap. His right hand was hanging down and I could see a pistol lying just below it when I peered around the counter. The man had a hole in his right temple. He was dead, for good.
I looked at him without remorse, wondering why it didn’t even bother me to see a man who had killed himself. I guess it was a better way to go than the poor suckers walking around outside. I noticed that he had been bleeding from the nose and had a black eye. I also saw that he hadn’t been bitten. The poor guy gave up and didn’t even try to fight these things off. I walked up closer and took the wallet out of his shirt pocket. It contained the usual, but I found his driver’s license. I guess I just wanted to know the guy’s name. The dead man’s name was David Clark.
I went to put the wallet back when one of the strippers screamed. She was at the other end of the store and the others were running toward her. She fell down screaming and nosily knocked a shelf over. Army knives clattered to the floor. She was kicking at a pile of old fatigues when I saw that there was a corpse hidden in them. It had blood on its face and was moaning when she crawled away. Chuck cut the thing’s head off. The dead man had a knife in its back. It looked to have gone through the spine, probably why he could only move his arms and head.
It looked to me like somebody had killed this man once before. He didn’t have any bites on him, so I’m guessing the knife did him in. David probably killed his friend before taking his own life. It was too bad he didn’t aim a little higher. The stripper was still crying and screaming when we dragged her away. She was bleeding from a bite sized hole in her ankle. She wasn’t going to last long. The bite was deep and she was losing a lot of blood. Soon enough, she would join the undead.
“We’ve got to kill her”, said BW.
The other stripper started crying too, “No, she’s fine. She will make it I’m sure.”
She was sobbing now and Steffanie pulled her away.
The one who had been bitten was vomiting now and looked pale. There was blood everywhere. I just walked back up to the front desk. The others followed, but BW stayed behind. I tried to talk loud enough, but still heard the sound of BW’s boot crushing the dying girl’s skull.
“So Osiris, which one of these guys is your brother? And what kind of gear does he have downstairs?”
He paused for a moment then answered, “The poor old guy at the front desk. David. Poor guy. We were really close growing up. All three of us were. I had another brother too, another military man. I think he was living out west, in the mountains, I think. We’ve been out of touch for awhile. Something tells me he’s still alive out there somewhere, but who knows?”
He turned away, but I could see that he was crying. I would be too.
Wiping his tears, he looked up, “Well, let’s go see what he left us downstairs.”
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