Pain blossomed in his chest, like a huge weight sitting on his sternum. Nash "Elvis" Hambleton looked furtively around the room to see if anyone had noticed his grimace of agony. With a shaky hand he wiped away the sweat from his forehead. The pain was there most days now, easing but never truly retreating. Fortunately the argument raging in Ling Mei's little apartment was distracting the others from his discomfort. With a cough to try and shift the lump in his throat he addressed the small band of friends in an attempt to calm them down.
"Now, now little ladies, uh huh yeah. Let's have a little less conversation, a little more action please!" delivered with his soft southern accent and the authority of his years, the aged lounge singer cut through the tension in the room. "I think Ling Mei has a point, those unholy beasts are starting to gather around here more and more. We're trapped in a world that's troubled with pain. As long as a man has the strength to dream, he can redeem his soul and fly- he sang. So lets boogie on out of here and exit this Heartbreak Hotel...." Looking around the room at the smiles he knew he had won them over to Ling Mei, their leader's argument to look for a safe place to hole up. Confident from their last encounters with the zombies they looked like they could take on the world, well armed as they were he thought they just might! "Why don't we head on over to the factory on the upper east side, like we discussed? the high fences and razor wore should keep out those sorry ol' Hound dogs!"
Nash looked from face to face, noting Ling Mei's nod of gratitude for his support and the grim determination of the other two friends - Juliana and Debbie. Checking their weapons they headed out on foot, figuring to scout out the industrial district without risking their precious supplies. On the street a handful of zombies meandered aimlessly about. The nearest zed, a youth dressed in skater gear turned toward them and received an arrow in the eye for his trouble, dropping soundlessly to the floor. Nash gulped visibly at the casual dispatch of what was once a young guy who may, in what seemed like a life time ago have been old enough to be his son. The pain came once again to the fore, causing him to breathe hard and loud. Ling Mei shot him a worried glance and he shook his head and gestured for her to go onward.
Gliding like a swan on tranquil water, Ling Me's effortlessly moved up the street with JJ and Debbie behind, the young ladies bickering loudly as they went - a little too loudly! Nash grit his teeth and tried to will his arms and legs to move, finally getting them to obey his commands even though it felt like he was wading through knee high mud. Maybe they should have hunkered down a bit longer he thought as he tried to catch up to the others. "Maybe i should try to find some aspirin" was the next thought.... "damn this hurts!" was the last thought as he stumbled to his knees. As he went down he saw zombies gathering from a side alley behind the girls, who were oblivious to their presence! With a massive effort of will he hurled himself forward, managing to get to his feet and stagger a couple of paces, with a cry of pain and distress he lifted his right hand that was filled with his precious army colt and shaking with the effort of lifting the weighty firearm. Ahead the noise of his cry caused the girls to turn in time to receive the zombies charge.
With a whirl of blades Ling Mei, kept two of the foul undead at bay. The points of the twin swords poking and probing but not doing any serious damage. JJ shrieked like a banshee as she stove in the forehead of the zombie she was facing with the butt of her shotgun, lifting her arms above her head in a victory pose over the broken form of the octogenarian she had battered to the floor. Debbie ducked her shoulder to avoid the grasp of her opponent before jamming her big sigsauer into it's abdomen and blasting the spine out of it's back before crushing it's head under the heel of her boot.
Nash bit his lip in frustration as one of the zeds peeled away and headed toward him. The weight of his pistol kept dragging his aim off as the pain in his chest was expanding at a rapid rate. As the zombie got closer, the more the pain spread into his neck and down his arm. With a sigh, he slid to the floor, the world went dark and the last sight he saw was the broken puppet like movement of the zed who loomed over him......
Ling Mei dispatched the last of the nearest zombies with ease, the blade slicing easily through the scrawny neck of the old man in front of her. Looking up the high street she saw a dark mass of zombies shuffling toward her, damn she thought, glancing around at her friends. JJ and Debbie were not looking at the approaching hoard of monsters however and she peered past them only to see the sight of her landlord's body being ripped apart by a zombie in a tattered nightgown.
"No!" the word almost silent as she couldn't find the breath to form it properly. With a snarl she lifted her swords and crossed the distance between them in the blink of an eye, bringing the sharp blades down and severing the zed's head in a single blow. Tears coursed down her face as she smashed the swords over and over into the dead woman's body, slashing and tearing at the creature until nothing but a shattered carcass lay on the tarmac by her friend's still form.
A tug on her shoulder brought her to her senses, Debbie was urging her to get up and start running. the zombie hoard was yards away and moaning loudly in anticipation of the warm flesh to come. JJ was already in full stride, howling her grief. With a last look at Nash's gaunt face, Ling Mei started to run after her friends.