This is Page 6 of Walking Dead: Requiem.
Page Six: Spent Luck
Autumn Tate-Hindle cried into one of the many pillows on her soft memory-foam bed, the tears moistening the fabric as she slid her face over to breathe in fresh air. The feelings she had seemed to be spilling from her every emotion that was initially repressed. As she brought her face back into the pillows damps core where she had printed an outline, she felt the soft, gentle touch of a hand. She had not even noticed someone had entered the room... "Take it easy baby, it's going to be OK."
Autumn tightened back up, her emotions sucking back behind her ego all at once as she slapped away Gary's hand from her shoulder, "The FUCK it will be... and don't touch me like that, you're NOT him!" All at once she lunged from the bed and pushed him aside, pacing straight out of her bedroom and into the front room of her apartment. The twenty-year old Gary had just been shut out once again by the maturirty of this foxy woman.
As he followed Autumn back into the main room of the apartment, he watched as she made herself a highball at the minibar Aaron had built. In the living room were three others who had panicked during the crisis outside and needed somewhere to go. Like Autumn and himself, they were also tennants of the apartment complex and were force to flee from their homes to hers, now watching CNN on Aaron's 40" plasma TV. An elderly couple from 2A and a young skater punk named Jaxin, younger than Gary by almost five years who lived with his father. The luxurious and spacious apartment made everyone elses look shitty, something that Gary attributed to both of it's successful and hardworking owners. Though in the same complex, his was barely half of it's size.
"Got anything to eat legs?" Jaxin asked outloud.
"Hey! Show a little god-damn respect you little punk!" Gary defended. He knew the reference very well, as Autumn was never afraid of showing off her long, lucious legs by regularly wearing daisy-dukes and miniskirts. Only a few hours earlier, Gary had those very legs wrapped around him when the shit started hitting the fan, the elderly couple pleading at the door to be let in as the building was invaded by sick and rotting psychopaths. Gary didn't even want to know what Jaxin's story was, as the teenager was covered in blood that obviously wasn't his.
"Oh, get the hell over yourself asshole! We ALL know she doesn't even really like you!" Jaxin spat back, his anger in check as the others dimmed down... save for Autumn, whose anger got the better of her as she slammed down her drink and stormed into the living room, "Get the FUCK out you little SHIT!"
A tense pause entered the room until the elderly husband, Byron, attempted defending Jaxin, "Now, now, we don't need to be like this---"
"Shut up old man," Autumn began with a loathing spat in her tone, "you want to protect him, you go with, him!"
Byron conceded into his fears as he held closely onto his wife Tess, who was just as scared as he was.
"Whatever you upscale fucking slut, wait until one of y'all turns and then wish someone was around who had the rocks to do something about it." After the angry and blatant statement, Jaxin stormed up and grabbed his equally bloodied skateboard as he headed for the front door. "Now, hold on a fucking second," Gary began boldly, "what the fuck are you talking about?"
Jaxin took a deep breathe as he looked down at the marble floor, sadly realizing just what he had done though tried his best to not show the fear he now carries, "Dad came home. Got bit by one of those faggots out there... before I'd left to get up here where it's, nice and high as hell, he turned."
"You say, turned? That's where you lose me..." Gary replied.
"Turned. As in, from who he was into one of them."
The cold chill returned to Autumns body as she took another swallow of the drink she had made, finishing it before biting into the ice that remained. She felt her filling respond to the cold chunks but ignored the pain, trying to negotiate what to do. On the one hand, she could send ALL of them out and plan what to do next... which probably consisted of drinking more, crying and then taking to her infamous pill collection under the sink of the bathroom. However, she did feel like she owed it to herself to see where this plague of sorts was going before doing anything rash. The news said there was an outbreak of something on the south-eastern part of the country but not a word of the issues they were experiencing. Maybe things will work themself out, she thought to herself.
Having calmed down, Autumn turned to her group of neighbors, "You can stay. Sorry for being a bitch, but please understand... I'm under a lot of stress. Aaron's out there somewhere, the streets are filled with, how did you put it? Them? And I'm left here trying to figure it all out."
Suddenly, a woman's scream filled the outer corridor of the complex outside. Byron jumped for the remote and turned the mute on, pausing the sound from the TV. Jaxin carefully backed away from the front door, rearing back his skateboard like a club as the elderly couple stood arm in arm, praying silently. Autumn felt Gary's warm hand hold onto hers, though she felt like pushing it away again she found herself unable to move at all. As they all waited for a follow up to the scream,
Aaron used the fire-axe's tipped point to find the back of the vicious cannibal ontop of Brandi, whose only hope was holding its chomping teeth by pushing its forehead back. The axe found its mark and did no good, not even slowing down the middle-aged tennant whose sould was apparently lost to the plague that has engulfed LA. However, Aaron was able to pull the man off of Brandi using the axe as a hook until he forced it back out while Brandi rolled away screaming. He helped her up and together, they ran out of the second-floor apartment into the outer corridor that surrounded the apartment complexes beautiful courtyard.
It seemed that the gated door to the building has been working against those inside, instead of keeping out the cannibals on the street it kept in those locked inside of it. However, most of the ones Aaron saw were people he knew... an oriental family whose breadwinner was a movie producer, a few corporate families and Mister Duncan the magician being among them. A nearest was a small group seemed to have found a feast as they ate into the body of a German Shepherd belonging to the producer's family, distracting them from noticing Aaron leading Brandi down the opposite way towards the staircase leading upstairs.
Never in his life did Aaron see this coming... choosing to rescue his wife from an army of monstrous cannibals instead of going through two years of divorce that seemed inevitable. While his best friend and coworker Leon awaited his return, he would be risking his life and the life of a porn starlett who'd be next years most recognized actress. Before entering the nearest apartment from the fire escape, Brandi told him that the life she has was replaced with the life she deserved, a statement Aaron called bullshit on since everyone else was involved. In the land of dead people walking, no one person is to blame.
Crossing over to the next two floors was very easy as the biters were not even that far along, not surprising to Aaron who knew that the country's economy was keeping more and more tennants from renting the upscale apartments of the complex. Aaron and Autumn only made it work because of the work they both put into it, long, hard hours of night-ended shifts compiled with the double life that Aaron so eagerly hides from the world. It was all about the money to him, keeping what he had safe and protected from the vicious world outside which has since become one of pure insanity... Mom...
"Are we almost there?" Brandi whispered to Aaron, breaking his last thought of concern, "I mean, which one is yours?"
"On this hallway." Aaron lead Brandi down the hall of the top floor, both now comfortable enough to keep from crouching though the sounds of the hordes below echoed throughout the courtyard. Confident at this point, Aaron began smiling as they approached the front door of his apartment while fishing into his pocket for his keys. As they passed the door to the apartment that was two away from his own, Aaron noticed it was open and glanced inside to meet the eyes of its tennant, Vincent Sinclair, who tackled him into the cobalt guard railing of the corridor. Instinctively bringing back the axe, Aaron thrust the business end into Brandi's arm causing the young woman to scream out in pain. She dropped to the ground, clutching the bloody injury that he had just created, distracting him long enough for the cannibalistic neighbor to send both himself and Aaron over the rail.
Aaron dropped the axe before falling over with Sinclair, the latter sailing off onto the pavement below as Aaron managed to grab onto the railing for dear life. The hordes below began swarming around Sinclair who would miraculously rise as well and reach upward for the dangling Aaron. He glanced over to notice some of the smarter cannibals were going for the stairwell and it would be only a matter of time before they reached Brandi, still crying on the floor from her disastrous injury.
One floor below, biters began reaching out and pulling on his pant legs in an effort to reach him as he feebly attempted kicking them away. In that one instance... Aaron Hindle knew what was going to happen. He thought of all the things he wished he had told those he loved... his understanding of his mothers actions against the woman who stole her husband... his double life that further pushed him away from his wife... his sincere apology to Brandi for slicing into her arm instead of trying to make her stay with Leon... all at once, he began to give in and simply fall to his death in an attempt to allow the young woman he'd nearly killed an attempt at surviving by sacrificing himself to the biters. Those god damn, no good fucking... biters...
Aaron felt the warmth of a hand grab his own as he proceeded to let go of the railing. Looking up, he saw Brandi reaching for him with not one but both hands, the look of agony intense across her face, "COME ON!!!"
He began using all of his strength to slowly pull himself up, rung by rung until his feet found the cement floor of the corridoor. He hoisted his leg over it and fell onto Brandi, causing her even further pain.
"I'm so sorry... I'm so fucking sorry..." he began. Through all of the and all of aching her body felt, Brandi looked into Aaron's eyes before saying, "Yeah, yeah, this actually deserved an apology..." There eyes met with a glimmer of interest, empowered by the hope that things might very well work out. As he started to regain his thoughts and his breath, he looked to injury. Though shallow and a flesh wound, it was definitely causing her alot of pain but she would be OK once he reached his medical bag in the...
"Aaron?" she spoke.
Aaron looked for the voice that used his name to find that Autumn was standing in the hallway outside of their door along with two others from the apartment. A young kid named Jaxin who had his skateboard reared back and ready for action, and Gary, the twenty-something that Aaron was positive Autumn had slept with. Her eyes were wide with a mix of horror and rage, something Aaron had not seen in a long time though her tone was something he was all too familiar with. The sight of Aaron's head in Brandi's lap must've really pissed her off.
"Hey honey... are you OK?"
Moreene stared down at the body of the man she had married, dangling from a rope attached to the beams next to the body of a young woman he was undoubtably living with. They died together it appeared, having hanged themselves in an attempt to escape from the horrors they could not handle. She thought to herself, Sack of shit probably knew I would get out and talked this one into killing herself to avoid me killing her too. Finding herself perplexed at the strained face left on her ex husband, she realized that it resembled the angry one he had while trying to argue with her after she had caught him in the act. A pudgy, puffy, pug-like face that only made her want to laugh but only allowed her to cry.
She had packed her bags with things he hadn't thrown away, changed into some decent clothes, stole his high-grade scattergun and was ready to ship out though seeing this only made her want to continue staring.
"Four years now... four years, I dreamed of how you'd look when you were dead. Playboy extrodinarre and closet-pedophile, Nick Hindle, dead at the hands of the long-suffering mother of his child. Nancy Grace would've loved it." she spoke to his dead face, "But I never wanted you dead... someone HAD to be here for Aaron. Like you ever cared when our son moved on and away from us, being too old and such for your love... did you even try to call him? See if he was OK? I will. For all of---"
Her words were cut short as she watched Nick slowly begin twitching, as if trying to respond to her words. She continued staring forward until suddenly and seemingly out of nowhere, his cold and shoddy hand reached out for her. Moreene backed away in confusion, trying to tell if he was alive or if he was dead. Whatever the cause, he was trying his best now to reach for her. His eyes puffed out of the sockets and his lips displaced by his portruding tongue, he was dead by all means but was still moving, still trying too... grab her. Eat her. He was one of them. One of the foul smelling ghouls who Malik had all but told her were the walking dead. Something uneasy passed through her gut as she watched this monstrocity of realization occur before her when suddenly, it turned into glee. The dead woman hanging next to him had began to move as well, though much slower than Nicolaus.
Moreene turned to her bag behind her and picked up the 12-gauge double-barrel she had stolen from his mantle. Loaded with two buckshot rounds, the aimed it right at Nicolaus' forehead before cocking back the hammer. Ignoring the weapon, Nicolaus continued only reaching and grabbing for her as she slowly began to smile.
"Tonight, Nicolaus... we are complete. First you. Then her. Tonight, Nicolaus, you will rest in pieces. Then, I will find our son and make things right by us all." Moreene said to his undead body before pulling the trigger, laughing as she did so.
- End Of Page Six. To Be Continued.
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