The old French town had seen better days, and as Jean picked his way carefully over the rubble he wondered if he would ever see those days return. Dropping to his knees alongside an overturned and burnt out car, he scanned the town square for sign of movement. His gut screamed at him to keep going, but his brain, in calm control, forced the fear down. Hasty action resulted in death these days, he had seen it countless times, had watched the fear overtake people’s minds, driving them to flee, to fight, to make fast, stupid decisions.
He stayed silent and still for several more seconds, before finally, with agonizing deliberation and slowness, set off across the square, staying close to the larger chunks of debris and scanning the dark, empty store fronts and doorways, as he made his way toward the base of the clock tower.
He approached cautiously, reaching out with one hand to test the handle, while pointing his small revolver at head height at the door frame. Twisting the handle he pushed, only to knock the door against the dead bolt in place. “Dammit” he exclaimed as he turned back to look out across the square, trying to locate another suitable location to hide for the night.
As he looked around he heard a loud wooden creak from above, looking up with wide eyes, he watched as the top floor window splintered outwards, showering a cloud of glass and wooden splinters around a dark figure of a man as he stepped out into the void above Jean. Throwing himself into the door, he tried to press himself backward as the figure hurtled toward him. With a sickening crunch the man slammed into the ground, dragging his face down along Jean’s leg, shredding muscle and leaving teeth and fragments of bone imbedded into Jean’s outstretched leg.
Screaming in pain and panic Jean fired wildly as the disfigured man, began to pull himself up with jerky sporadic movements, before slumping back to the ground as the bullets shattered what remained of his skull. “NO!” Jean screamed as he looked at his torn and bleeding leg and at the now still zombie lying in front of him. “NO! NO!” He screamed again, violently kicking the still body in a fit of rage and spraying dark black red blood across the floor. As the rage subsided Jean slid down the door in exhaustion and pain. As he sat there breathing deeply he heard a distant sound. He closed his eyes and swore as the low moans of a dozen zombies reached his ears. He looked up and could make out the first of them emerging from an alleyway, shambling toward him with hungry murder in its eyes. Jean looked at the approaching zombie, looked at his pistol, aimed and pulled the trigger.