This is Issue # 1 of Dead Frontier by Walkerbait22, titled First Encounter.
Issue 1 - First EncounterEdit
You never forget your first encounter with an infected.
Cole Pruitt certainly won’t.
Cole walks down the bumpy sidewalk on Chicago’s west side, gazing at the dark blue evening sky and reminiscing about his day at the call center. Same old, same old: nagging boss, annoying callers, idiotic coworkers. How did that moron Neil get a promotion over him? He sighs discontentedly and kicks an empty Pepsi can into the street. Following the can with his eyes, he sees it land in the middle of the road and notices a commotion across the street. Unusual for this often quiet neighborhood.
One guy walks with a slow gait toward another man wearing a Sox cap, who swiftly walks backwards, trying to make space between him and the strange man. “Bro, are you okay?” the guy in the Sox cap asks. Cole stops and observes the scene from across the street. Wow, something interesting happening in my life.
“Unghh...” the limping man replies.
“Want me to call an ambulance or somethin’? You look sick...”
“Ungghhh!” the man groans again.
The man in the Sox cap stops. A fatal mistake. The groaning man lunges forward and takes a bite out of his arm. Cole’s eyes go wide, and he rubs them thoroughly, not really sure if he’s seeing right. The groaning man doesn’t stop feasting; he just eats the man’s flesh as he screams in pain. “What the fu-? Help!”
Cole quickly realizes he isn’t dreaming; someone is being eaten right in front of him. He crosses the street and pulls the cannibal off of the man. “What the fuck is wrong with you?!” Cole shouts. He throws the cannibal to the sidewalk, and for the first time he gets a good look at his face. His skin isn’t natural, but almost grey. His eyes make Cole feel uneasy, as they are dull grey and the area around his irises are a sickly green. “What the hell...?”
The cannibal lunges at Cole and brings him to the ground. Cole lies on his back, struggling to get the man snapping his jaws near his neck off of him. Cole flips the cannibal over, so he is on top of him, and punches him in the face. Standing, he lifts his brand new shoes and stomps the man in the face. The man grabs Cole’s leg and attempts to chew on his ankle, so Cole stomps on him again and again.
Cole pants and sweats and shakes the blood off of his shoe. Suddenly, a realization comes to him: I just killed a person. It was self defense, right? He turns to the man in the Sox cap and begins to say, “I’m going to call an ambu--” But Sox cap stands now, groaning just like the cannibal was only a few moments before, even with the same haunting grey eyes and skin. “No, no, no...” Cole turns and runs away faster than he thinks he ever has in his entire life.
After a few minutes, Cole bursts into the door of his building and struggles to lock the door; he fumbles with the keys as his hands shake and sweat. He lunges up the steps to his apartment, and the sound of his door slamming echoes through the hall.
Pressing his back against the door, he slumps to the ground and pulls out his cell phone, which he drops in his nervousness. He picks it up and quickly dials the number of his best friend, Micah.
“Micah, you’re not gonna fucking believe this,” Cole says.
“Hello to you too. And what are you talking about?” Micah says.
“This can’t be happening right now, it just fucking can’t!”
“Calm down, man. Take a few breaths.”
Cole follows his friends advice as the scene of the cannibal replays in his head. “I think I just killed someone.”
“What the fuck?”
“How the hell did you kill someone?” Micah asks.
“I don’t know, it just...happened. He was fucking eating this other guy, Micah. Eating him, just ripping chunks out of his arm. So I go help and then he turns on me, and I stomp his face in.”
“You’re shitting me.”
“I panicked, I just left the scene. What if the police find my DNA or some shit and find me? I’ll fucking go to jail,” Cole worries.
“It was self defense, right?” asks Micah.
“Well, yeah, but then they’ll wonder why I left. It’s suspicious, you know? And you’re not gonna fucking believe this: the guy he was eating gets up. His eyes and skin are all grey...it was just fucking creepy.”
“Shit man. Look, I’ll come over.”
“Thanks,” Cole says gratefully. “And bring some beer. I’m out.”