Saturday, October 29, 2011

HvZ: Mission Two

This morning I woke up, and felt super groggy and achy. I went to a late brunch, and then cruised through the campus, looking for any humans out and about, but to no avail. As the afternoon started, I felt odd. At first my fingertips went numb, and then my arms and legs tingled. I felt really warm, and all of a sudden the world spun, and all I saw was darkness.

When I woke up, I was on a covered flight of outside concrete stairs. I was dazed, and my head felt like it was splitting open. I tried walking off the stairs, and into the light rain, but I couldn't get halfway down the stairs before an intense paint wracked through my body. I retreated to the top of the flight and tried to remember how I had gotten there. Nothing was coming to me. I checked my watch, and it said 2:05 p.m.

I sat down and listened to the rain that pattered against the bricks and the hum of a nearby ventilation system. Just from what I saw around me, I realized that I was at the Steam Plant, just behind the Arts building and Ross Engineering. No one would really find me unless they knew where I was or were actively looking for me--and I couldn't go anywhere without collapsing.

The chilly air combined with the sounds of the rain and vents were very hypnotizing. I sat there for what felt like forever, and then I heard something. I looked up and saw a team of about twenty humans equipped to the teeth with blasters coming around the corner. The infection inside me looped at the sight of the weapons, and I wanted to flee, but my body wouldn't respond correctly.

The group spotted and came over to where I was. They seemed completely at ease and happy to have found me--a reaction that completely put me at unease. The woman in front came up to me, made sure I was alright, and then uttered a nonsensical phrase: Super bird. And then, it happened...
This image flashed in my mind, and everything flooded back to me.

I had been attacked from behind and tranquilized earlier in the day. At one point I had woken up, and found myself strapped down, people talking to me from all around, and flashing a series of cards changing in front of me. Someone out of my vision stuck me with a needle, and my arm burned as the chemicals mixed in my blood. The infection with in trembled at this invasion of the chemicals, and I could feel my mind becoming aware of the infection's loss of control over my body. They were curing me!

Some authority-sounding man spoke behind me, saying things that I couldn't pay attention to or decipher. My ears rang and my vision was getting cloudy. A moment before I became unconscious again the last flashcard was the Superman emblem, and the image of a bird in flight.

I blinked, and I was back on the steps of the Steam Plant, surrounded by a huge group of humans. I looked down at my watch, and it now read 2:18 p.m. The woman told me that I was a test subject for a strain of "Agent Z"--a possible cure for the infection. I had been captured as a zombie, given a dose of Agent Z, and left at the Steam Plant to test the effects of it, especially on mobility and cognition responses. So far, my mind was behaving as an un-infected human should without a live version of the infection in them. This was a phenomenal step. I needed to be protected and escorted to a pick-up zone for the Bellingham Defense Front (BDF).

The group of humans all swarmed around me, kept me hidden and protected, and we proceeded to Miller Hall. Inside, there was another zombie-turned-human by Agent Z. It was explained by a military member that quite a few different subjects were given various doses and strains of Agent Z to test all of its effects, and that the BDF was preparing to pick up these test subjects at 3:00 p.m. We had to get these "objectives" from Miller Hall, to the extraction point at the tennis courts on The Ridge before their doses wore off.

It was decided that the group of humans present would split into a few groups: two groups defending and escorting the two objectives, with a third group running around for added protection and intel. My group decided to try and use the PAC route to get to the Ridge, and so we made our way through Miller Hall so we could building-hop. Once our group was reloaded, strapped up, and had me safely in the middle, we launched.

We rushed out of Miller and were going to use the Humanities Building and Old Main as jump-points, but after seeing no zombies we briskly walked all the way to Vendor's Row, and filed down beneath the PAC. The PAC has many exits, and we knew any infected that saw us wouldn't be able to track all of them. After filing through the building, we came out on High Street. Our presence had been detected, but we all pushed across the street, and the whole way up to The Ridge. The zombies stalked us the entire way, but my group kept tight on me--I even had a few personal guards to kept them with me, even if the other members strayed off to stun a zombie or scout ahead.

We were hunted the entire way through The Ridge, but we all kept close as we filed through the parking lot, and then along a back-road going between all the dorms. One of our members had a key into Delta and the Ridgeway Commons. The group rested a moment and tried to figure out a way to get me to the tennis court, a mere thirty feet from one of the exits. At this point, we were pinned down in the building, as groups of infected has circled up around the building and extraction point.

One of my guards was able to confirm that at least one of the other objectives had reached the courts safely, and that the court may be protected by an anti-infection mist or signal. We were sufficiently pinned down, no matter which way we went. All we could do was wander from door to door, peaking out at the hungry infected. As the clock grew closer to 4 p.m., I could feel the effects of Agent Z wearing off. At first, there was a nagging feeling in the back of my head that kept creeping forward, and my chest began to have that hollow feeling again.

As Agent Z completely left my system, I could feel the infection taking over again. It was numbed, but it was returning. About this time is when we heard the news--the other objective was going to be picked up by the BDF. All the infected focused their efforts on the tennis court, where the humans were guarding their objective. There was only enough time for three waves, which the humans were able to keep their objective safe and rescued--but many humans were turned in this last effort. The humanity and infection in me fought each other as I watched the onslaught from the sidelines.

During the evening, there was word that the different tests of Agent Z had helped synthesize an air-distributed serum that helps fight the infection. Essentially, it targets the infection's ability to recover from being stunned by the polyurethane in the darts. The serum was successful, but only to an extent--now the infection took 12 minutes to recover, instead of the usual 10. It was a victory, but a small one that many of us figured would effect us less over time. We had the BDF on the run...

No comments:

Post a Comment