Snareville by David Youngquist Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: Snareville by David Youngquist Read Free Book Online
Authors: David Youngquist
Tags: Fiction, Horror
pile. He shoved one of the deaders aside. I could see his face in my scope.
    I put the red dot on his eye and squeezed the trigger. Brains blew out the back of his helmet against the sky-blue wall.
    I pounded on the roof of the truck, and Bill pulled out of the lot.
    Tony looked at me, eyes wide.
    “ We never let any of our people turn!” I shouted over the wind. “They’d do the same for me.”
    I glanced back at the swarm. Some of them were running after us. Some were fighting over Mike’s body.
    “ I sure hope you can take orders from me, Tony. You’ve just been drafted into my unit.”
    I dropped into my seat in the truck cab. We sped west through landscaped restaurant and business areas. The intersection was jammed with dead cars. We turned back north, headed down the off-ramp to the Interstate, jostled across the soggy median, and cruised up the other way. A drive that normally took twenty minutes took almost an hour. The redheaded chick babbled, laughed, and cried the whole way to Snareville.
    “ I’m glad to see you, Jennifer," Rick murmured to my left. "I’ve missed you."
    “ Good to see you too, Rick.” Jenny sat to my right. She worried at the cuticle of her thumb with her teeth. She did that when she was stressed.
    “ You don’t sound very enthused.”
    “ No. I’m glad you’re back, Richard. Really. How’d you get here? I thought you were stranded in Chicago.”
    “ I was. My car was stuck in a traffic jam on Michigan Avenue. Things went crazy that first week. After that, they calmed down a little. People started to lock themselves away. I had a hotel room. When I started noticing things were quieter outside, I stole a cab and drove west. I rolled into Princeton on vapors.”
    “ So why not come all the way home?”
    “ I was lucky enough to get off the Interstate and get to Wal-Mart. The car died on me just as I rolled into the parking lot. I made it inside with a few other survivors, and there we were… until you rescued us.”
    “ Wasn’t a rescue mission,” I said. “We came in for supplies.”
    Rick looked at me like I was something he'd just scraped off his Italian loafers.
    “ Be that as it may, we've been freed. We can be together again, Dear.”
    “ Uh-huh.” Jenny stared out the firing port as the fields rolled by. She didn’t say anything else until we got home.
    It was noon when we rolled into the first checkpoint. In town, we off-loaded the trucks. Tony offered to help; no one else in his group did. We sent them all with a few guards for a shower and quarantine at the high school. We'd set up some solar camp showers over there, and they worked. Not real private, but a warm shower was a warm shower.
    It took us the better part of two hours to distribute our goods. Then we fueled the trucks and drove them back to the sheds. From there, I walked home with my crew.
    In our bedroom, Jenny and I folded our coveralls and put them away for the next time. Jenny pulled on one of her white tank tops—boybeaters, she called them—and a pair of shorts. I tried to hug her, but she pulled away.
    “ I have to go talk to him. I owe him that much.”
    “ Jen, I…”
    “ I have to.” She wiped the tears from her eyes with the palms of her hands, took up her shotgun, and left.
    I sat on the porch, trying to nurse a beer. I would've killed for a cooler full of ice. I’ve never liked my beer warm, but I needed that one.
    I had George tied to the handrail beside me. We didn’t like our dogs running loose in town. They tended to draw a lot of unwanted attention, and we'd decided they were best used as alarm systems.
    The sun was nearly down. We always buttoned up for the night once the sun disappeared behind the hills.
    I’d give her a few more minutes, then go inside with the others and lock the place down. At least we had a camp light now. We could stay up past dark.
    George woofed. I reached for my gun, then stilled as Jenny came around the corner.
    “ Scared me for a minute,” I

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