Rapture

Jack Nixon is a high schooler in his exam year with bipolar disease and severe depression. He spends each day fighting his own mind and emotions before he destroys himself. He finds a comfort in his best friends and his girlfriend, who support him daily. He always finds himself a burden, but they make his life better.
But as an unthinkable disease spreads through the world and his make believe plans for a zombie apocalypse become a surreal reality, he must push his unstable emotions aside when he, his brother and his two best friends are put in charge of a rag-tag group of survivors, including his girlfriend and her sister, who he has vowed to protect. He must push past the dead, the living and his own to maintain their safety.

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13. Home Comforts

 The truck was pulled to a halt on the Avon Bridge by an important looking army personnel. He had a bald head and strong figure. Judging by his face, he was in his mid-thirties and fed up with the bad luck that had befallen him today.

 He looked closely inside the truck and recognised Phil and Derren from when they had pleaded with him to go in and find Jack and Nate. He smiled and ordered his colleagues to lift the barrier to let them through. He smile widened as he saw new faces on the back of the truck. Everyone got out of the truck.

 “Good to see you got to ‘em in time, kid!” He said to Derren, shaking his hand. He turned to the kids. “You must be Jack and Nate. Who’s this?”

 “Alexia.” Lexi stepped forward, offering a hand to shake. He took it with a smile.

 “You boys really are good, taking in a stranger like that! Does me good to see something like that in times like these.”

 “We appreciate the kind words,” Leon stepped in front of the kids, “but you have a huge crowd of those freaks coming your way, think you can handle ‘em?”

 The man gave a smug smirk. “We’ve got reinforcements coming in, those brain-dead bastards won’t know what hit them.”

 Jack chuckled in triumph, no matter how weird it was to celebrate killing people. No, things. They weren't people anymore. That was the one thing that kept him fighting them, they’re not human anymore.

 Leon slapped him on the shoulder. “Good man, private. I’ll see you on the other side.”

 He smiled back and mirrored his actions. They walked back to the truck as they saw about ten people in hazmat suits.

 “They can’t seriously go in and investigate, can they?” Jack asked, sitting back in the truck.

 “They’ve got no choice. They need research to stop these things.” Leon replied, as if it was something that happened everyday for him.

 “And what if they don’t find a way stop it?”

 Jack sighed, shook his head and gave out a small chuckle. “Then the whole world has gone to utter shit.”

 Jack wondered what the Private must have seen to find this even slightly amusing.

 He looked over the dark streets as they sped past. There was nothing. It was too quiet. Too peaceful. The streets he once was scared to tread in the dark due to hoodies and chavs were now silent. Empty.

 More deadly than ever.

 They moved past the Tescos Express garage and Alexia hit the top of the cockpit of the truck.

 “What the hell was that!?” Derren shouted as he pulled it to a stop.

 “I need hair dye. Blue.” She replied with a smile.

 Derren cursed at her lunacy, but Phil perked up. “Actually, we could do with some more supplies. Lucy and Jade’s place looked cleaned out when their parents got out of here.”

 “Jesus christ...” Derren cursed. “Fine, but drop me and Jack off at ours first, it’s on the way and we need to see if there’s any evidence of where our mum went.”

 Those words twisted a knife in Leon’s chest, but he showed no emotion towards it. He was trained not to.

 “Okay, we’ll take you and Jake round yours, swing around to Morrisons and come back in, say, twenty minutes. But you better be ready, guys.”

 “We will be.” called Jack.

 They pulled over in front of 159 Cheltenham Road.

Jack and Derren jumped out of the truck and waved the others off as they went down the road.

 Their house was nothing special. In fact, quite the opposite at first glace. Three bedrooms, one the right size to be a cupboard, a bathroom, a dining room, living room and kitchen, nothing in the house having any particular modern style. But to Derren and Jack, it didn’t matter what the house was like.

 It was what was in it.

 *****

 “I can’t stand food shopping.” Nate Grumbled as they walked into the automatically opening doors and into the huge supermarket.

 “I can’t stand shopping altogether.” Jack replied with a chuckle.

 “Will you two stop complaining, please?” Phil ordered with a sigh, “I’ve been stuck in the same house as you all day, I can’t stand it anymore.”

 Shawn rolled his eyes as the man trundled past, closely followed by Leon. “Alright, you lot. Aiden, Alexia and Rachel, you lot come with me and Phil, we’ll  find all we can. Nate and Shawn, stay out here and keep watch. Make sure we don’t get surrounded by more sickos, got it?”

 The kids nodded, some of them more reluctantly than others, and the five of them moved inside.

 The Morrisons store was a huge mass of different tins and packets. The only thing that looked like it was too bad to take was whatever had been left on the shelf in the cafe that day, as it was now about twenty past ten.

 Phil and Leon moved to the front of the pack, both of them holding the rifles. Aiden moved up beside them and all three shifted their eyes around suspiciously.

 “Hello? Anybody home?” Phil called.

 Nothing. Silence. No looters, no surviving humans. Nothing.

 “Where is everybody?” Aiden asked. “I was almost expecting this place to be packed, it looks easy enough to defend.” The only entrance was the front one they had just come through. There were glass panels around the front of the building, but they were easy to cover.

 Leon sniffed the air, almost like some sort of wolf. “What I don’t understand is why this stuff is all still here. We can’t have been the first people to think of this!”

 Rachel pushed past, practically dragging Alexia along with her. “Who cares!? If there’s something here, lets get what we need before it figures out we’re here!”

 Meanwhile, Nate and Shawn paced the front entrance, Nate with his shotgun from Jason’s shop, and Shawn with Jack’s M16. “This is so weird, right?” Shawn blurted out, breaking about three minutes of silence.

 “What is?” Nate asked?

 “All this has happened so damn quickly, we've just sort of been thrown into this. I mean, today, I shot someone. Actually ended them. I only just thought about it, but we have all killed someone for the first time today, maybe except Leon, and we haven’t given it one seconds thought. Even back there, with jack and Jared. He shot him. Actually shot him. Probably would have killed him if it hadn’t been a first time shot. That doesn’t bother you?”

 Nate looked down. “To be honest with you, I hadn’t actually thought about it.”

 Shawn continued. “Aiden, as well. that thing with the fricking crowbar.He practically mutilated that freak. I mean, he was trying to kill him, but, he was as manic as that thing attacking him. What could do something like that.”

 “Fate.” He replied.

 Shawn looked at him, confused. “What?”

 “Think about it Shawn, we knew sooner or later, this world was going to go to shit one way or another. Admittedly, we all thought that it was more likely going to be later, and no one but freaky geeks thought people would start eating other people. But we knew it was going to happen, so maybe something in our mind was just ticking over, like, our primal feeling from the cavemen to do anything to live. That’s why humans survive. We adapt. We plod on, no matter what.” He strained for a second. “Urgh, jesus, what’s it called!?”

 “Instinct?” Rachel called from behind them.

 “That’s it!” Nate shouted in triumph. “I thought you were shopping.”

 “Nah, we got Lex’s dye and she kinda went shopping mad, so I left her to it. I’m not really one to shop anyway.

 Shawn chuckled. “And they’ll be alright without you?”

 “Sure they will, what’s the worst that’s going to happen?”

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