Surviving

A girl is all by herself in a zombie apocalypse, with no one with her at her side. Her mother had just recently sacrificed her own life to save her, the only family member she had in the world. What happens when she wants to give up on everything?

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1. Surviving

“Run.”

That was the last thing I heard from my mother in the distance, before I heard a blood-curdling scream coming from her. I didn’t want to leave her; we could have made it out alive together. We didn’t have to go all ‘Sacrificing each other’s lives because we love you’ thing. We just needed a plan; but of course, it was too late to create a plan, there were over thirty of them surrounding us. Only one of us could escape, but I didn’t know it ten minutes ago; mother said that we could make it out alive together. Oh how stupid of me to think that. This isn’t a nice world where we have friendly neighbours and barbeques; this is a world where we have to survive no matter what. Just like in my zombie apocalypse comic books; ‘Be the hunter, or be hunted’.

I ran through the forest as fast as my skinny legs could carry me, only killing about five of them along the way with my dagger. The only thing I could hear in the dark forest was my heavy breathing; the distant sound of my mother’s scream in the back of my mind, and those dead people making their noises wherever they are. My body finally couldn’t take it anymore, and I collapsed under a big oak tree. I looked up at the dark eerie sky, sweat sliding down my face, some going into my eyes and mouth –tasting salty– my legs so heavy and numb, my arms falling to my sides. But still, the dagger stayed in my right hand tightly, like it’s my lifeline – kind of is in this world. I look around for somewhere to hide, a mixture of feelings going through me: fear, anger, grief, exhaustion…and defeat. “Why bother?” I asked myself loudly. “It’s not like I have any family or friends left in this damn world.”

Making my decision up, I let go of the dagger, making it fall to my side, and I closed my eyes; the sound of the living dead coming nearer, the sound of their shuffling feet, and their groans of hunger. This is it, I thought to myself. I’m going to die now; I’ll be with mother again, father, my dear little sister, grandmother, grandfather – my family.

I thought back to the world where there wasn’t an apocalypse, when it was only in fiction books. How I would read those books and scoff at how dramatic the characters are, thinking how I can do it so much better…thinking how it would never happen in this life. I then thought about to my school life; how I was in the middle of Grade Nine, just starting on writing a short story in English; oh how many ideas I had for a short story. I could have made a story on this, how I survived through an actual zombie apocalypse, I thought amused. But either way, the world I used to live in was kind of boring; I was a loner at school, my parents separated, family didn’t have much money – my life wasn’t interesting. I was a socially awkward girl, not really interesting. Oh how interesting life is now…

I could hear them closer now, making my insides curl in anticipation and fear. Why not just kill myself before they eat me? It will be less painful for me than being ripped to shreds by them, or being chewed on. No, I thought determined. My mother went through all that pain just for me, it’s the least I can do for her.

But yet, mother wouldn’t want you to give up so easily just for you to die on the same night she did, another side of my thoughts told me. True, mother lied to me that the both of us would make it out alive, and she did do the ‘Sacrificing each other’s lives because we love you’ thing.

Right, I thought to myself. I shouldn’t give up yet.

I painfully pulled myself more in a sitting position, and hesitantly opened my eyes. Approximately a yard away, a heard of biters were heading my way. I glanced to my right, seeing my blood-covered dagger; I quickly picked it up, stabbing it in the tree above me as hard as I could so it stuck well. I then lifted both my weak arms to it, and slowly pulled myself up, despite my legs stinging in pain, needing more rest. I bit my lip in concentration, feeling blood oozing out eventually, and landing in my mouth. I ignored the metal taste, only one thing going through my mind.

Surviving

I’m finally on my feet, I leaned against the huge tree and yanked as hard as I could on my dagger, getting it out of the bark. I glanced behind me, seeing them less than a yard away from me. “Mother of mine, this better be worth it.” I mumbled, heading in the opposite direction of my enemies. I sort of limped away from the dead people, every once in a while glancing behind me in case they were coming closer to me. When I turned back to the front from checking up on the Walkers, an unexpected Walker was five feet away, stumbling towards me. I yelped in shock, stumbling back, only to trip and fall on my back. “So much for surviving, I’m gonna die soon because of this Walker.” I huffed, holding the Walker away from me as much as I could. I made sure he wasn't near to biting me or scratching me, before I glanced down, trying to find my dagger. “Why is life so cruel and stereotypical to me?” I cried, spotting my dagger a couple of feet away from me. How did it get there? I only just stumbled!

I grunted in frustration, trying to get this stupid dead person off of me. I finally got it off me so I quickly stumbled to my feet, diving towards my dagger. I turn around quickly to kill it, only to see it dead, a bullet hole in its head. “What the hell?” I mumbled, walking towards it. Who shot it? Is someone here watching me or something?

Twigs snapped in the distance, making me remember about the herd of the zombies. My mind focused on the herd instead of the dead one in front of me, making me run away from them, feeling stronger than before. I quickly slashed some stray Walkers in my way, very aware of some of them being shot by an unknown person…or people. “Are ya going to reveal yourself, or what?” I yelled to the people hiding in the forest, protecting me. I received no response, making me sigh, only to scream in shock when somebody literally jumped in front of me from the sky – well trees to be exact. He was a boy around my age – only older than me by a year or two. He had black floppy hair that covered one eye, pale skin covered with dirt, and a determined look on his face.

“Come on!” he yelled, grabbing my hand and shoving me to a tree that suddenly had a ladder. I don't question the mysterious guy, climbing as fast as I could up the giant tree. What was happening? Who was this cute guy? “Just keep climbing up the ladder until you can't.” he told me, hot on my tails. I followed his instructions, finally reaching the end of the ladder. I hauled myself onto the handmade balcony-thing, looking around the tree house to see people with guns, staring at me. “You’re safe here now, I’m Alex Smith.” the mysterious guy told me from behind.

“Elizabeth Peyton,” I introduced myself, looking around warily. “Thanks for saving me…I guess.” I looked around, very aware of how people are looking at me kindly, and not hostility like other people my mother and I had come across. I was not aware though, that it was going to be the place I would live happily for the rest of my life in with the mysterious Alex Smith – well, as happily as I could with it being an apocalypse and all...

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