The Dead Saga (Book 3): Odium III

The Dead Saga (Book 3): Odium III by Claire C. Riley Read Free Book Online

Book: The Dead Saga (Book 3): Odium III by Claire C. Riley Read Free Book Online
Authors: Claire C. Riley
Tags: Zombies
I’m as bad as the assholes that were in charge.”
    I looked at the photo in her hand and attempted a smile back as I looked upon the younger faces of Nova, Rachael, and Michael. They were young in the image, perhaps not more than thirteen to seventeen, their faces carefree and happy. Behind them were who I assumed were their parents. A man had a hand firmly on Michael’s shoulder, a stern but warm smile on his face. And their mother—damn, she was pretty. I handed the photograph over to Nova, happy that she had it back. I know I would do anything to have some of my old photos back. To be able to see my husband’s handsome face again. I closed my eyes and realized sadly that I could hardly even recall his smile anymore. The thought was chokingly sad.
    “No, you’re not,” I said with more strength than I felt. My words seemed to have little effect, so I placed a hand on her arm. “I’ll be outside, waiting for you,” I said, and left hurriedly, knowing that she needed the moment to come to peace with her decision, and I needed the space to stop myself from crying at my own losses.
    Back outside the rain was still coming down—the kind of fine drizzle that gets you completely drenched within minutes. My hair stuck to my face, and I didn’t bother to push it away, but instead lifted my face to the sky and closed my eyes. I let the rain wash the dirt free from my cheeks, and I breathed in the freshness of it all. The pitter-patter of rain, the clean air, and the damp on my skin, with my eyes closed it felt surreal, as if being back in my old life.
    “Fuckin’ love the rain,” Nova said as she came back outside.
    I looked across at her and saw that she was all business again, her emotions raw and dark but under check, and her cocky smile back on her face. But I knew it was all a false pretense, and yet I let her have it, because we all have to put a mask on to cope with this world. Sometimes it was the only way to survive it.
    “I could leave it.” I shrugged, referring to the rain. I blinked away the rain that threatened to fall into my eyes. “It’s just wet and cold.” I sneezed again and wiped my nose on the back of my sleeve. It was gross, but what was a girl to do?
    “Dude, it washes away the pain.” She looked up to the sky, letting the rain fall on her face and I couldn’t help but smile.
    “I’d prefer a hot shower,” I said with a grin. “And a shot of tequila to wash away my pain.”
    She looked down at me. “I’ll drink to that,” she laughed. “Let’s get back to the truck, there’s nothing here anymore. We’ll grab some of the supplies and keep moving.” She marched off, the muddy puddles splashing as she traipsed through them.
    I followed her. Her mood was much darker than I’d ever seen on her. Not that I could blame her: she’d killed Rachael—her only sister—and there was a very real possibility that we might not make it back for her to see Michael ever again. It was a sad and very depressing thought as I realized that I wanted to make it back to base camp—that I wanted to see everyone again. Not just Emily-Rose, but Susan, Becky, James—even Mikey. Especially Mikey. Damn that man. Every one of them had a place inside of me now, and though it might not have been much, I would easily lay down my life for these people. I smiled to myself at how far I had come.
    I caught up to Nova, walking by her side. “Are you okay?”
    “Yeah.” She smiled down at me. “I will be, anyway. It’s just all bullshit, isn’t it?” She didn’t pose it as a question but more of a statement.
    “It is,” I agreed. “But things will get better. They have to.”
    She grinned at me again. “Well aren’t you all buttercups and fuckin’ roses today?”
    I rolled my eyes. “Me? No, I’m still Miss Pessimistic, remember. I’m just trying to cheer my friend up.”
    She looked back across at me, her bright red hair plastered to her face, and she looked pale, malnourished, and cold, yet

Similar Books

Dorothy Eden

Never Call It Loving

Back for You

Anara Bella

A Dream of Ice

Gillian Anderson

The 92nd Tiger

Michael Gilbert

Brigid of Kildare

Heather Terrell