Dead Glow By: Kelly James


Dead Glow
By: Kelly James

The glow across the skyline was something else entirely. I had to have the answers to it. And as much as I hated to, I assigned the task to Max.

I had to have answers.

“Take care of yourself, Captain. Understand?” With my hand on Max’s shoulder, I had to fight the urge to hug her. “Understood, sir, I’ll report back before zero hundred hours tomorrow.” With that, she and Majowski were off to the unknown.

July 14th 1013 hours

Ten hours past due and no sign of Max, I suspect she’s dead.

My policy on the matter of missing persons was as clear as it was firm. If a soldier didn’t return before the scheduled time, I’d leave their ass. Sitting still would get us killed. I had no way of knowing why the soldier didn’t report back on time, and I couldn’t afford to find out. I mentioned before, I don’t have many men left.

But for Max I made an exception. If she was dead, I didn’t intend to allow her corpse to roam. I owed her that much.

I told the men the lights were too important to not investigate. I told them we had to have answers. I think they saw through me though. Saw the worry for Max eating my heart. If they did, they didn’t say—they knew better.

I didn’t want to risk another two man team. We were all going this time. I’d trade every grunt with me for one Max. Any military commander would.

When dealing with the walking dead, moving at night proved much safer than traveling by day, despite what all the horror movies have shown us over the years. They were slow, blundering creatures, easily evaded in the dark. They couldn’t see nearly as well as a man in the night—something about their pupils not dilating because they were dead, the Army lab-coats had told us before they, too, joined the ranks of the dead.

I couldn’t wait until dark.

Max couldn’t wait.

I marched my small unit straight for the city—White Rock, as far as any of us could tell. Unconcerned with the prospect the dead might see us, we moved quick and efficient. Besides, the zombie ranks appeared to have dwindled over the past year. If they didn’t get the nourishment they needed, they decomposed. The first year, after the meteor struck into the Atlantic, the dead stayed well fed. They scarfed down anything in their path.

Unfortunately, for the dead, they didn’t understand the concept of food rationing. The second year we fought armies of desperate, starving Zombies. They rotted even as they attacked. But lately, we’ve encountered nothing but small clusters of the bastards. And most of those weren’t much more than walking skeletons. If they didn’t eat, they simply faded away. It’s a damn shame humans were nearly extinct. The zombies were giving the planet back to us, but no one was around to accept it.

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