Read Dead Series (Book 2): A Little More Dead: Gunfire & Sunshine Online
Authors: Sean Thomas Fisher
Tags: #Zombie Apocalypse
A Little More Dead
GUNFIRE & SUNSHINE
Sean Thomas Fisher
Copyright © 2015 by Sean Thomas Fisher
Cover design by Creative Paramita
rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or
distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. This is a
work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the
product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any
resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, businesses, companies, events,
or locales is entirely coincidental.
alf way down the balcony
stairs with the Beretta waving wildly in his hand, Paul could see the sun-splashed
horde closing the distance on Cora. Like running on a loose rug, her feet
slipped in the sand and, for a moment, everything slowed to a painful crawl. He
had time to realize how tired she must be from going without food and water for
God knows how long. Had time to understand that if she fell now, she’d be just
as tattered and torn as the red robe fluttering in the ocean breeze behind her.
Leaping the last four steps, he landed with an
bursting from his lips and scrambled toward the tall fence surrounding
the backyard. Feet slipped in the hot sand. Panic bubbled and pestering
questions whisked through his mind, threatening to derail his rescue: How did
she get here? Was she bit? How could she have survived for so long on her own? It
The undead were so
close now Paul could hear their snarls and grunts over the crashing Gulf Coast waves.
The grisly mob herded Cora into the outstretched arms of the elderly corpse in
dirty shorts coming from the opposite direction. Boxed in, she was quickly
running out of beachfront real estate and this wasn’t looking good. At the gate,
Paul’s vantage point improved and he realized there were more of them than he
thought – at least twenty, maybe more. Gripping the warm metal in his free hand,
he yanked hard, nearly pulling his shoulder from its socket.
“Fuck!” he yelled,
startling the horses and turning back to the three-story beach house behind him.
Wendy galloped down the outdoor staircase with her pink gun drawn and Stephanie
hot on her heels. Long hair floated out behind them like veils, sunlight
exposing the worried lines engraved into their faces. “Where’s the key?” he
yelled over the battering waves.
shouted, a heavy handgun accentuating the toned arms spilling from her black
tank. She hit the sand at roughly the same time Troy burst from a ground level slider.
“Coming,” he yelled,
holding the key up and hurdling a lounge chair.
shooting through the black cast-iron bars, deciding Cora didn’t have time to
wait for Troy to unlock the damn gate. Wasting ammo on high-risk shots was
stupid but, unlike the tireless pack behind her, Cora was already slowing down
and this really wasn’t looking good. After everything Brock did for them, Paul
owed it to the cowboy to step in and failure wasn’t an option. Heart pounding
in his ears, the sun beat down on his bare chest as he took out the old
straggler with more shots than he cared to retell before starting in on the group
Paul’s side and fumbled with the skeleton key in the lock, cursing under his racing
breath. “Who is she?”
“Just open the
gate!” Paul missed his next two targets, the iron bars interfering with his
“I’m trying!” Troy
clenched his teeth and fought with the lock, a handgun tucked in the small of
his back. “Got it!” The sweet sound of a metallic
pierced the dead moans getting closer and the gate popped
open. Everyone spilled onto the beach. The sand slowed his speed and Paul had
time to think how he and Wendy just escaped certain death aboard Wavy Gravy
less than two hours ago and here they were running right back into the Reaper’s
outstretched claws. Curtis finally caught up with a shotgun tucked against his bare
shoulder, the gate slamming shut behind him with a spring-loaded
that made Paul shudder. Curtis stopped
and planted his feet, firing a booming blast right next to Paul’s head that
made his ears ring and his next shot miss. He blinked to clear the rotating
thunder clapping inside. It was a cluster-fuck of gunfire and sunshine, the
prior as deafening as the other was blinding.
Their shadows stretching
across the sand, they unleashed hell upon the rotting throng coming at them. Paul
shook with the handgun’s recoil, dropping a guy with curly blond hair that
reminded him of Dan. The man fell to his knees and a chubby redheaded woman barreled
over him, knocking him to the sand and reaching for Paul with hands that
appeared to have contracted leprosy. Dragging in a heavy breath, he put a round
in her in the shoulder, jerking her to the side. Undeterred, she sneered and
corrected course, kicking up sand as she charged. Adjusting for the wind and forcing
his breathing to slow, her head blew off just before he pulled the trigger. He
glanced over at Curtis who gave him a coy wink before pumping in another shell
and turning back to the crowd.
“I’m out!” Troy
cried, cracking a black guy in the face with the butt of his gun and knocking
out the man’s two front teeth.
“Get Cora inside!”
Paul slowed his shots and backpedaled toward the gate, checking the pockets of
the shorts he commandeered aboard Wavy Gravy. His spirits sank. Empty. One magazine
hid in his holster and it would have to last but the way those things were coming,
there probably wouldn’t even be time to change it out. Every hollow point had
to count, so he waited until he could smell the rancid stench on their breath
before firing. It was a gamble but one he had to take.
Troy scooped Cora
up into his arms, biceps bulging from a Chevy cutoff, while Paul, Wendy and
Stephanie closed the wall behind him. For every zombie they dropped, another
took its place. Paul could see the rips and tears in their irate faces and it
didn’t take a genius to realize their ammo wouldn’t outlast them.
“Get back to the
house!” he yelled, putting a hole through the forehead of a young boy who made him
think of Mike. Moving as a single unit, they crept to the gate with the undead
literally dropping at their feet, the wind painting their faces in blood. Paul
could taste the metallic liquid in his mouth and wondered if he was infected,
wondered what it would feel like to suffer through what Sophia did.
A stalking man in
a suit and tie came out of nowhere, blasting through what was left of the pack
like bowling pins. Hair thinning and gray, he must’ve weighed over three
hundred pounds and came fast as hell. Paul took aim at the snarl on his face
and waited for him to get closer. An old woman in a dress limped nearer on his
right but he stayed on point, drawing a bead on the man’s scrunched up nose. Squeezing
the trigger, he braced for the recoil that never came. “Shit!”
With no time to
clear the jam, he brought the gun back in his hand, tensing every muscle in his
body. A thundering boom sent the thing sideways. Paul looked over, barely catching
another one of Curtis’ shit-eating grins before the old lady in the olive-colored
dress was on him. He shoved the Beretta against her face, craning his neck to
avoid her snapping jaws and slashing nails. She looked fresher than the others
but just as hungry.
“I’m out!” Wendy
shouted, backing to the gate.
Stephanie put her gun
barrel to the old woman’s head and blew the thing’s brains out the other side.
Paul threw the stiff to the sand and spit blood from his mouth before hitting a
dead man in the face with the butt of his gun and sending him to the ground.
Curtis finally joined their crumbling wall, using his shotgun like a baseball
bat while egging those things on.
Stephanie cried, deflating what was left of Paul’s hope and then planting a
roundhouse kick into a woman’s peeling face.
The good news was only
four corpses remained on their feet. The bad news was only four corpses
remained on their feet and everyone was out of ammo. Paul turned and ran,
fighting off a skinny black teen blocking his path to the gate. He couldn’t tell
who wanted to kill who more and all that
bullshit didn’t matter now. It was kill or be killed so Paul skull-clubbed
him, sending the kid staggering. A blond woman darted past with a sun hat dangling
from her neck. Paul tried tripping her but the teen pounced, driving him backwards
in the sand.
“Jesus Christ!” He
held the kid’s gnashing teeth at bay, instinct the only weapon left in his
arsenal, which wasn’t much.
Someone screamed behind
him and Paul wanted to look but couldn’t. He grunted when the teenager slammed
him up against the fence with surprising strength, knocking the Beretta from
his hand. Weaponless, he punched him in the face and the thing screamed back, breath
cold and rank. Paul stuck a leg behind him and shoved, sending him cart
wheeling to the beach. Spinning, he saw Troy struggling to unlock the stupid
fucking gate with the sunhat woman chewing on his shoulder from behind.
The gangly pharmacist
ripped through Paul’s mind, gutting him from the inside out. He grabbed her
sunhat and yanked. Troy screamed when her teeth tore a piece of flesh from his shoulder.
Throwing the behemoth to her stomach, Paul stepped on her back and pulled,
strangling her with her own hat. Tendons bulged in his neck as he arched his
back, straining his muscles and gritting his teeth. He screamed to the blue
skies above, ripping the cord through her vertebrae and severing the head from
its body. Her arms and legs moved on the ground. Teeth snapped. Glistening blood
gushed from the stump in her neck. Operating on automatic pilot, he grabbed a
fistful of blond hair and swung the head into a man trying to eat Stephanie’s
face for breakfast. The man teetered to the side and Paul snatched his gun from
the sand before hurriedly following Stephanie inside the fence. Troy slammed
the gate shut behind them and jumped back as rotten arms shot through the bars.
Everyone stared at
the dead teenager and short woman desperately trying to breach the gate, chests
heaving. Troy rested his hands on his knees, too gassed to even notice his
wounded shoulder. He spit to the sand. “Well that didn’t go so hot.”
“Fuck you, bitches!”
Curtis barked, wiping the blood and guts from his tattooed chest and flinging
it at the corpses.
Paul heard a
clicking noise and looked down, realizing he was still clutching the blond
woman’s head in his hand. He held her up by the hair and watched eyes blink and
teeth snap. Tossing the cranium over the fence, the ghouls chased after it like
dogs, giving it a few quick sniffs before returning to the fence and reaching
through the bars. Planting his hands on his hips, he exhaled a winded breath.
“Jesus fucking Christ! Does this shit ever get any easier?”
rushed to his side. “You’re bleeding!”
Paul and Wendy
looked at each other while Cora cried in the sand at their feet, her robe so tattered
and torn it barely covered her naked body beneath.
Troy clutched his
shoulder and winced, eyes bulging when he saw the blood coating his hand.
going to be fine. We just have to…”
“Stay back,” he
yelled, pushing her away.
Stephanie held her
hands out like he was a wild animal, inching closer. “We just have to clean it,”
she said, lowering her voice. “You’re going to be okay.”
Her words sent a
pang straight through Paul’s heart.
She didn’t know.
How could she not
She came all the
way down from Kansas City with her brothers and she didn’t know? But Paul knew.
Without taking his eyes off Troy, he ejected the mostly spent mag to the sand
next to Cora and quickly cleared the jam.
“Just stay back,
Steph,” Troy pleaded, backing toward the narrow beach house. “I could have it.”
“Don’t you say
that! You don’t have it!”
Troy nodded at
Curtis. “Curtis, get the guns and ammo from inside and start reloading. There
could be more coming.”
Curtis stared back
with his jaw dangling and a blood-covered shotgun hanging limply in his hands.
Blinking back to
reality, he darted into the house while Stephanie eased closer.
“Troy, let’s get
inside and get you cleaned up. We need to sterilize it.” Her voice was soft and
calm and Paul admired her for that.
Troy ran a bloody
hand through his dark wavy hair. “I can walk on my own. Don’t get too close; I
don’t want to hurt you.” He looked back at the others. “Any of you.”
Paul and Wendy traded
a somber look as Stephanie helped Cora to her feet and followed Troy inside to
the soundtrack of dead moans and grunts.
“She doesn’t know.”
“How can that be?”
holstered his weapon. “Haven’t seen anyone survive with just a bite yet.”
Wendy turned back
to the corpses at the gate and smeared blood across her cheeks like a tribal warrior.
“Not even lunchtime yet, and we’ve almost died twice today.”
the sun, Paul watched the dead with his blood boiling. He mourned his old life
and the safety he once took for granted and the fact that he couldn’t even get
two minutes of peace and quiet to mourn his wife pissed him off even more. He
couldn’t see Sophia’s face again and it was like being buried alive in somebody
else’s coffin. Watching the teen snarl and hiss at him, he slowly shook his
head. “I punched that kid right in the face and it didn’t even faze him.”