Saturday, February 26, 2011
I needed a bath. I dove in the river after paddling away from that mess. I had to wash off that smell. I wish I could wash away what I saw, and heard as well. He won’t last much longer. No strength. No dogs to eat. Too old now. And I don’t think he cares. I just need to paddle as far away as I can. The further I go, the more I can think about something besides dead dogs. Oh Jack, never never never would I have ever let anyone do that to you.
What a house of dog horrors! There are doglegs, paws, snouts, teeth, hair, guts, and anything dog all over the place. Some of it has been here so long that you can’t even tell it was from a dog. Flies, worms, maggots and whatever else came along must have had a feast. Plenty of bones stripped of its flesh. Places where dogs were burned. Places where they were chopped up. Boxes of dog tags, and collars. Just a massacre. A “dog slaughter house” as Roscoe called it. It is hard to make out all of his mumbling, but the story is that his farm just wasn’t cutting it. He was barely making enough to feed his family, nonetheless the animals. That was when someone approached him about catching stray dogs, and killing them. Behind the scenes. Either the city, or some nearby towns wanted him to get rid of as many dogs as he could. Fear of the disease. Government scum. Leave it to them to be behind something so awful. It appears this farm was just far enough out of the way that no one would pass by to see what was happening. Roscoe must have been paid nicely, or was just that desperate. Also apparently clueless to why they wanted the dogs dead. Roscoe, his two sons, and a few of his workers went around the nearby towns picking up as many dogs as they could. As long as no one saw them, they could do whatever it took to take the dogs. He said the more vicious dogs were killed right away. Most likely shot in the head. The smaller ones were just left in cages to starve to death. Loud ones were also killed. I think he said they would even break in pet shops to take the dogs. Not sure about that. I know in our area they stopped allowing pet shops to sell dogs, but they seem to handle things differently here. They burned some of the bodies. Others they chopped up, and buried. Sometimes they would let the dogs kill themselves. Lock dangerous ones up with nice ones. Big ones with small ones. They obviously had nothing better to do. Then they got what they deserved. One of his sons got sick. Died. The disease got him. Feel sorry for him, no way! Roscoe didn’t stop even after the vaccine came out. Said they didn’t believe in the vaccine. The only vaccine was ridding the area of dogs. Too bad his workers felt differently. One of his workers was attacked and killed. They just buried him like the dogs. They didn’t know it, but he wasn’t dead. Zombie. He probably had taken the vaccine and no one knew it. Not sure how long he had been dead before Roscoe said he came back to life. He attacked one of the other workers, and Roscoe’s other son. Both became zombies. Roscoe shot them all. Sick bastard still has what is left of their bodies. His sons are laying in one of the barns, and the workers are out in the field. Can’t believe he actually wanted me to see that. He said he went nuts after that, but I think he was nuts way before that. Of course, he blamed everything on the dogs, so he moved from just killing them to torturing them. Electrocuting. Drowning. Cutting off parts and letting them bleed to death. Let some of them mate in order to have more dogs for him to mess with. Again, I don’t think he went that far. He’s nuts but not that smart. Dogs probably just mated on their own. Too bad they didn’t know what was in store for their puppies. He also had pictures. I saw the first couple and that was all I could bare. It was hard listening to, and seeing all that. I kind of wanted to cut him up right there. But I think he has been somewhat punished. Nothing left. Sons dead. Farm finished. Living with the reminder of what he started all around him. After torturing so many of them, he didn’t have the energy left to do anything more with them. He turned a bunch loose, and left others to die. He then did something even crazier. He started eating them. He has been here just eating dogs ever since. It has been so long since there was a dog fresh enough to eat that he has been here just rotting away. Next time something smells funny, I am just going to ignore it. I am not sure what I was expecting but this was not it. The old man is on his own. In the morning I am out of here.
It is amazing the positions I keep ending up in. I was making my way down the river when this terrible smell filled the air. For sure it had to be from something that was dead. I have smelled dead zombies. Dead people. This was similar. It was so terrible that I couldn’t help but have to take a look around. I paddled the boat over to the side. I got out to take a look around. It wasn’t long before I found where the smell was coming from. Dogs. Dead dogs. Tons of them. They were scattered everywhere like a bomb went off killing a city of dogs. It was hard to take the smell and sight, but I followed the trail of dogs to a house. The trail was nothing compared to the piles and piles of dog carcasses all around the house. I carefully went inside. That is where I found Roscoe. His time is running out. He can barely get out of the chair. Sure as hell surprised him. Roscoe spends days at a time just sitting in the chair with dead dogs all around him. He had no problem with me being there. I actually ended up giving him some water just so he could talk. He told me to stay the night and he would take me for a tour in the morning. I will probably end up dragging him around. I tried to ask him about the dogs, but he said in the morning he would answer any questions I had. Very odd, but I have decided to stay. Curious about the dogs. Seems like a safe place to stay the night. Can’t escape that smell though. I’m sleeping upstairs. With more dogs. Don’t think he has been upstairs in a long long time.
Saturday, February 19, 2011
That was an adventure. Some parts of the river were rough, while other parts I just coasted. Kind of scary not knowing what was coming up ahead of me. I was thinking about those cartoons, or movies where everything is good until someone yells, “waterfall!” Almost flipped but didn’t. Saw some fish. I think that is the first time I have seen any kind of animal in a long time. Wish there was a way to catch one. Fry that sucker up. At least I have some water. Tied the boat up now that the sun is about to set. Not sure if I should sleep in the boat, or find a spot in the woods. Boat leaves early in the morning.
So this is a new one. I found a small boat that got stuck on some debris by the side of this river. I expected to find a dead body in it, but it was empty. Thinking about going for a cruise down the river. Never been much of a sailor. If you even call it that. Dad took me out on the lake a couple of times trying to do the father-son fishing thing. He wasn’t much of a fisherman. We had some fun times figuring it out though. Got at least 2 hooks in his hand every time. I think he hoped that we wouldn’t catch anything because he hated trying to take the hook out of the fish’s mouth. I wasn’t a fan of that either. He got his wish. We barely caught anything. Definitely nothing worth taking home and bragging about. Flipped the boat once too. Oh that was fun. At least I thought so. Dad was so embarrassed when some other boaters came along to pull us out of the water. They helped pull the boat into shallow water so that we could flip it back over. Lost everything that was inside. Nothing important. Except I think dad’s work phone. He was just glad we weren’t hurt. He told the guys that we flipped because we were trying to pull in a big fish. I don’t know if they believed that story. I’m sure we looked like we didn’t belong. We really should have been in front of the tv watching some football. A comfort zone for us both. Mom couldn’t stop laughing at us when we got home. She told dad that was going to happen one day. Dad wasn’t amused at first. Then it was all laughs from there. He was actually brave enough to take me on the water one or two more times. I don’t remember exactly. Hopefully I will have better luck.
Well, it is just you and me again journal. I felt like I was taking the walk of shame leaving the group. It is weird being on my own again. So quiet. I miss them already, but I have to get them out of my mind and move on. It is the only way I will make it. I need to focus on where to go next. Carefully moving through the woods. I really need to find a landmark, or maybe some signs to figure out where I am. Then I can really get going. Oh journal, if you could only tell me where to go. If you only had all the answers.
Saturday, February 12, 2011
I was right. I could see the anger in their eyes, but surprisingly they didn’t say anything. It isn’t worth it at this point. Jake thanked me for saving his son. I told him to take care of him. It is them against the world now. Peter cried. I guess it doesn’t help him losing another person in his life. I told him to be strong for his dad, and never forget his mom. No matter what. Jess said I was welcome to stay, but I could tell somewhere in her she knew this had to be. Rob didn’t say much more than goodbye. Still hurting. No one is to blame. We are all trying to survive in a new world. Sometimes the zombies win. Sometimes we win. Nicole and I just exchanged looks. Didn’t get to know her, but I know we are a lot alike. Maybe she will leave the group one day as well.
I figure I will ask Jess. I am closer to her than any of the others besides the I think I should leave the group. It is just too hard for them to move on right now. As hard as it is for me, I need to continue on my mission. They aren’t going to go to NC now. Rob and Jess don’t even have the motivation to live any longer. I knew this was a possibility when joining the group. I can’t deal with this. My own issues are hard enough to deal with on top of all the zombie bullshit. I’m sure the guys will be mad if anything. Think I am just running from the problems. Say I never cared. I would wish they wouldn’t think that, but there is not much I can do about that. Arkansas has proved to be a challenge so far. Not going to get any easier by myself, but I got to do what I got to do.
No one is moving. We are just here. Still in shock. They are gone. Rob Jr., Christina, and Emily. The latest victims of the zombies. Fucking zombies. Everyone is fair game for them. Children. How could they Sometimes I feel sorry for the zombies. They were people at one time. I would like to think as people they won’t do harm. They were good before this sickness took over. But this time there is no sorrow for the zombies. They should burn in hell. Actually hell is to good for them. Left Jake without a wife. Without his daughter. Rob and Jess without their son. Two families. One giant tragedy. I have no idea how it feels to lose a son, a daughter. But I feel horrible. Is this my fault? They were doing fine without me. Is it because I wanted to go home, and they chose to come with me? This maybe the end of this group. I don’t know how everyone gets past this. Not sure how they will have the strength to continue on. Especially Rob and Jess. They probably lived and fought to survive for Rob Jr. The reason for their existence is gone. Jake needs to be strong for Peter. Poor Peter. Dying in his mom’s arms. He will never forget that. No matter what happens from here on out. The only person unchanged by this is Nicole. She was sad before this happened, and sad now. I just wish she would talk about it. Let it out. Cry like everyone else.
RIP Rob Jr.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
I have seen zombies kill many of my friends. Other survivors that I was with, and befriended. People I didn’t know. But what happened the other day is something I may never be able to erase from my mind. It all happened so fast. Really that was the only way it could happen. We had been a pretty careful group until that moment. We had moved further into this city. It turned out to be one of the bigger cities I have been in for quite some time. Big cities equal big danger. And that is what we got. Jake noticed a sign for an airport so we decided to check it out. Could any of us fly a plane? I don’t think so. I guess we were hoping there was someone who could, and they would still be around. Dumb now that I think about it. At the time, it was just a move by desperate people. We all got out and looked around. It was a smaller airport. There were some planes still there. I went out on the strip to check out the planes. Rob and Jake went to look in the hangers. The women took the kids inside. Then then it it was like a prison for zombies. I don’t know how long they survived there, but they were there. I am not sure if it was Jess and Emily that screamed first, or Jake and Rob. It seemed to happen at the same time. Jake and Rob had opened a hanger that was full of zombies. They didn’t know it until the door opened too far to close it in time. They came running and yelling for everyone to run. Zombies started streaming after them. As that was happening, a chair came flying out of the building window. Emily soon followed falling from the 2nd floor. I had just started to run in that direction so I ran up to her. If I hadn’t seen it myself, I don’t think I would have believed it. Peter was tightly in her arms. She had fallen on her back to brace the fall for Peter. It could have been luck, but I rather think of her as a hero. Blood was already flowing from the back of her head. She wasn’t I tried Zombies then started jumping out of the window. I yanked Peter out of his mom’s arms, and began to run with him. When Peter and I were trapped in that car, I didn’t think he could scream any louder, but I was wrong. He must have screamed twice as loud when I pulled him away from his mom. I feel bad for him. There was no time to stop and say good-bye. As I came around the front, Nicole pulled the van up to the front. After I shoved Peter inside, I turned and looked inside to see Jess fighting off zombies with Rob Jr. behind her. Again, I just wanted to get in the van. This was one of the reasons I would rather be on my own. If there were zombies, I would just run and not have to look back. But I looked back this time. I ran inside but before I could help them, zombies were coming at me. I was picking up anything I could to fend them off. Jess was doing the same. I finally made my way to her. She told me we had to get the kids out of there. We were on the same page for a second until I realized she said kids. Then I looked down and saw Christina. She had several bites on her, and lots of blood. I couldn’t tell if she was alive. I hate that I even had the thought, but it didn’t matter at that point. At least not to me. At that moment. She had been bitten. If she was still alive, she wouldn’t be one of us for much longer. I was in no position to argue, so we just fought our way closer and closer to the door with Jr. in between us, and Jess dragging Christina. As one zombie would go down, there would just be another one to replace it. It was starting to take a super human effort to keep up the strength to fight. A super human effort that wasn’t good enough. At some point, I guess Jess realized we wouldn’t make it dragging Christina, or that she was no longer with us. She let her go, and that allowed us to get a little closer to the door. Then Jr. ran for it. I know I didn’t tell him to. I don’t know if Jess did, or he just panicked. As soon as he went out the door, a blur came by and he was gone. Like when a bird comes swooping down, and snatches its prey. I didn’t know if it was one of the fathers or a zombie. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a father. I spun Jess around and told her to go for it. She ran and I tried to distract as many zombies as I could. How I am not a zombie right now, I don’t know. I couldn’t make it through the door after Jess because several zombies followed her, but stopped at the door when it closed. They couldn’t get out, and neither could I. The only way out was a window. Unlike Emily, we were on the first floor so I didn’t have to jump. The problem was breaking the window because everything I could get my hands on was used to hit a zombie. I don’t know what I got, but I finally broke a window and went through it. Cut myself good on all the glass. Just as I turned to run, I saw zombies leaning over something. Not something. I knew it. There was nothing I could do at that point. I ran around the corner, and the fathers were having a hard time fighting off zombies, and trying to get Jess in the van. She kept screaming for Jr. I helped Jake as Rob finally got her in the van. Then he wanted to stay and look for Jr. too. Jake told him to get inside and they would drive around to find him. It would be safer. It just wasn’t the moment for me to tell him. I just agreed. We were all able to get in the van. Nicole started driving, running into, and over all the zombies that came running at the van. Jake turned to anger, as he started screaming at Nicole to run over each and every one of them. She was just trying to circle around to look for Jr., but Jake was going nuts. Rob and Jess were frantically looking out the windows for any sign of their son. Me I had nothing left. Emotionally. Physically. I just was there. Screaming crying arguing was going on around me, but I turned blank. It was too much for me, and it wasn’t even me that lost family. They were the closest thing I had to family at the moment. Those kids. The children I had been playing with for months now. Like a babysitter. I felt like the bad babysitter that lost a child. Took the child to the park and let someone run off with them. Then had to face the parents. Actually haven’t done much of facing them since. Kind of why I have returned to the journal. Not much talking has gone on since. It took them a little longer, but they are now as emotionally, and physically drained as I was when we got in the van. I am not sure what is going to happen now. Nicole used up most of the gas driving as far away from the airport as she could. We are back in the middle of nowhere. The most anyone has done is cry. It is going to take some time to heal. If we can heal.
We were driving along when Emily noticed this little park. She thought it would be a good idea to let the kids get out and play. The guys weren’t so sure of that, but they realized they have to let the kids do normal stuff as often as they can. Keep up the road trip theme. They stopped, and I went with the kids to play on a swing set. The parents actually made a picnic out of it. They sat, ate, and enjoyed the breeze. While keeping one eye open of course. Again it reminded me of Violet. Going to the park. On the swing set. Running around chasing Jack. I’m happy with the kids, but sad at the same time. I kind of ruined the mood when I started crying. First time in a while. Surprised I don’t do it more often. Shockingly, it was Nicole that came over to me. She didn’t say much. She just hugged me until she knew it was a good time to let go. She looked at me like she knew all to well why I was crying. I could see it in her eyes. She had pain that was similar to mine. We haven’t talked, but in that moment, it felt like we had known each other for years. It was a strange feeling. After I got over my moment of weakness, it was back to the kids. I just tried to make sure they had a good time. Be strong again. Time to build up that strength again.
Finally made it to a city. A small one, but it is nice to be out of the woods. Watching out for more crazy people like the ones up in the mountain. We are short on gas, and supplies so we are really looking carefully for stuff. It would be nice to get a second car again, but not sure they want to do that since it is has been hard to find gas. Kids are great. Jess says I have been talking in my sleep a lot. Zombie dreams every time I close my eyes. No matter how happy I try to be with what is going on, and with the kids. It is all zombies when I sleep. I guess it is better in my dreams than in real life.