Z5: The Necromancy Wars [Original Fiction]

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  1. Secksy
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    Z5: The Necromancy Wars
    by Tyloric

    Beta read by the lovely youroctober.

    Prologue

    Blood dripped down his thigh, wet and sticky. Matt stifled a groan that built up in the base of his throat, letting his hands clench instead, pain coursing down his leg. The gash must have been deeper than he thought.
    He sat down, leaning his back against the cool steel wall, the bitter cold seeping mercilessly through his tattered cotton plaid shirt.

    â€Yeah,†Cole Binson, the leader of the squad who were escorting the survivors out of the city, said, surveying the large structure that was probably, at one point, used as an air hanger. “We can rest here for today.â€

    Today. It echoed in Matt’s head.

    â€Tanner!†Binson said, turning back to his men.

    â€Sir!†another man in uniform said, presumably Tanner. He came to attention.

    â€Tend to the wounded… and,†Binson leaned forward, whispering into Tanner’s ear, “check for bites.â€

    Tanner saluted without hesitation, “Yes, sir.†He grabbed his med kit and went to work. Matt must have been out of Tanner’s line of sight, because he went to the back of the crowd of survivors to start his work.

    Matt was exhausted, both physically and mentally. The group of survivors had grown substantially overnight, from about five to twenty plus the ten soliders, and they’d all been walking through the zombie-infested city for all of it.

    The entire group, for its size, had been particularly stealthy. Men and women alike only spoke when they had too. Matt noted morbidly that there were no children in the group. No one under twenty, it seemed.

    He’d gotten careless, however, tripping and tearing up his thigh on a piece of cracked concrete that had been sticking out at just the right angle, leaving a decent five inch gash across the right side of his thigh.

    He unbuttoned his shirt leaving him in only a white undershirt, and shrugged it off. He then proceeded to tie twist it and tie it tightly around his leg. Matt let out a deep, pained sigh, leaning against the steel wall again.

    Survivors began spreading out, wordlessly designating there own spots for the day. He wondered how many of them would actually be getting any sleep. He thought about how many of them had lost friends and family to the sudden outbreak.

    This wasn’t supposed to be happening. This sort of thing wasn’t supposed to happen outside of movies and horror novels.

    Matt ran a hand through his light brown hair, morbidly amused at how dirty it felt. Civilization felt like such a distant memory now when in reality it had only been a few days since the outbreak had begun. Well, since any had taken notice to it. Who knows how long the undead had been sauntering around unnoticed, all of them being easily mistaken for the psychotic, until you realized that that don’t die.

    His leg, the entirety of it, was throbbing now, his body finally releasing those endorphins, the pain in his leg dulled to an ache. For now, anyway.

    There was a thud next to him, making him jump. “Sorry,†Tanner said apologetically. He had set his med kit down a bit louder than he had meant.

    “’s alright.†Matt muttered after a moment, forcing himself to breathe evenly.

    Tanner was a handsome man, all things considered. He had taken his camo-helmet off, revealing a head of closely-cut ginger hair, which complimented his ocean-blue eyes. His jaw was strong, covered by a few days worth of fuzz from being unable to shave in these conditions.

    “You doin’ okay?†The medic asked.

    Matt snorted. “You’re joking, right?â€

    This caused Tanner grin a bit. “Right, sorry. Are ya hurt?†he clarifies, and Matt picks up, for the first time, a deep southern accent, real hick sounding.

    Matt untied the shirt that was wrapped around his leg and torn blue jeans revealing the wound. “Ah.†Tanner says simply, snapping open the medkit. He leaned in, examining the gash closely. And Matt’s breath caught at the closeness.

    “Well,†he said. “Doesn’t look like it’s too bad, only skin deep. Spared the muscles any kind’a damage. Looks like you’re gonna need some stitches.â€

    “Great…†Matt muttered as Tanner grabbed a small bottle.

    “Umm…†The Marine hesitated.

    “What?â€

    “I’m gonna need ya to drop your pants.†Tanner said, an apologetic smile on his face.

    “Of course.†Matt said exasperated, unbuttoning his pants, pausing briefly when he reached for the zipper, glancing at Tanner as if looking for support, but quickly dismissed the thought and lowered the zipper and proceeded to shimmy the blue jeans down so the medic could have better access to the wound.

    He sat there, jeans around his ankles, grey briefs exposed to the others. If anyone was giving them strange looks, Matt wasn’t aware of it, as he kept he gaze raised to the ceiling.

    “This might burn a bit.†Tanner warned before pouring the contents of the bottle over the gash. He might as well been pouring lava.

    “Holy fucking shit!!†Matt cursed before he could stop himself. “A bit?!â€

    â€It hurts less if you don’t see it coming.†The medic chuckled.

    “Bullshit,†he hissed angrily. Tanner reached back into the kit, grabbing a small tube that looked like a ketchup bottle you would see at restaurants. He squirted the contents directly onto the wound, a dark orange solution, that was creamy in texture. The pain dulled significantly.

    â€Couldn’t you have done that first?â€

    â€Nope. Had ta make sure it was clean first.†he glowered when the marine pulled out the materials to start the stitching. “This is gonna pinch.†Matt hated how every doctor always said that when ever that were about to poke you with something. Of course it’s going to pinch. It’s a needle.

    He winced the needle went in, though it really was just a pinch.

    â€I’m Matthew. Matthew Gabes. Most people call me Matt.â€

    Tanner’s smile was genuine. “Sean Tanner. Pleased ta meet ya, though I s’pose the circumstances coulda been better.â€
    “Quite a twang ya got there, Tanner. Where ya from?â€

    The smile melted into an amused grin. “Not far from here, actually. Tyler, Texas, born and raised. How ‘bout you?â€

    â€Me? I’m a city boy. Bounced from Sugar Land to Houston most my life. That was only ‘cause I was a foster kid, though.â€

    The medic frowned. “So your parents…?â€

    â€Car crash. I was 5.†Matt admitted grimly.

    â€Ouch, tough break.â€

    Matt saw that this was going somewhere depressing, so he decided to play the cool guy. He shrugged. “I don’t remember them that well, to be honest. And for some reason it never mattered much. Got a half sister, though, from my dad’s first marriage, Susan. Pain in the ass.â€

    That earned an amused snort. “I wouldn’t know.â€

    â€Only child?â€

    â€Naw, my brother and sis were just moved out by the time I was born. I’m the bab boy, you see.†He grinned sheepishly.

    And so they chatted back and forth like that through the duration of Matt being stitched up. Family, jobs, friends. The entire time, however, Matt was aware of how far away all of that seemed now. It had only been two days since this had all started…

    [the tale starts here]
     

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