Rory and Tessa have managed to work together to survive the island, but now they have an even bigger task at hand. Together, they must find Bennett and the missing zombie before the virus can take over the mainland.
Easier said than done. The mainland Tessa knew before is a different world from the one that exists now. A mysterious plague taking over the poorer population has people nervous, and Rory and Tessa will have their work cut out for them. Will they be able to stop Tessa’s virus before it’s too late?
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Deadlock (Revenge and Zombies 2)
All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2023 Torri Heat
It was silent out on the water. The kind of silence that screamed in your ears, demanding to be heard. The kind of quiet that raised the hairs on the back of your neck and created trails of goose bumps along your arms. It spoke of a storm brewing in the distance, of an imbalance in the scales.
The last time it was this quiet was after my father died, when the laughter had died off, when I had snuck out from under the table I was hiding beneath and ran to cradle his body. Afterwards, I knew I had been screaming from the soreness of my throat, and the way I gasped for air. But during those moments, before the paramedics showed up and carried his body away, it was silent. Completely and utterly silent. There was only the screaming quiet in my ears, surrounding me in a way I thought I would never experience again.
Until now, on the boat. Rory was at the wheel, frowning as he stared into the grey skies. We hadn’t spoken since the rush to the boat, and that had been in mostly short sentences.
“Untie the rope for me.”
“Hand me that oar.”
And getting to the boat had been too loud as we snuck past the small hordes of zombies that had spread out across the island. Luckily, since we had arrived at the safe zone, everything had quieted down. The zombies that had been at the door soon gave up and spread out, and we knew that it was now or never to make our move. Joe had loaded us up packs filled with supplies and food -- whatever the safe house had to spare. We probably had enough to last the two of us a week on the mainland, maybe two if we stretched our rations. A week to find Bennett, the zombie, and make our mind up about what would happen next. I wasn’t sure yet if we’d return to the island together, or go our separate ways. Right now, our minds were on the next steps, and the next steps alone. We needed to find Bennett and that zombie. There was no other way around it. If he managed to release it into the wild, the whole thing could be a complete disaster.
There was a reason I liked science. I liked reasons. Logic. I liked there to be answers to my questions if I worked hard enough. Two plus two always equalled four, and I had a plan in place for how I wanted to spread the virus. Bennett releasing one random zombie into the wild was not how my plan was going to go and could ruin a lot more than just my revenge. I needed to stop him before that happened.
As for Bennett when we found him… well. Unfortunately in my line of work, there were some things I needed to do, and this was one of them. But Bennett was a liability, and I couldn’t afford to have him running around any more than I could have that zombie running free. I’d take care of him when and where we found him.
The skies were darkening, and the wind was picking up, bringing my silence to an end. Reality was flooding in, and I still needed to figure out what our plan of action was. I pointed to the grey beach in the distance. “I think we should try there!” I called over to Rory, yelling to be heard over the screaming wind.
He turned to look at me, the boat cutting sharply over a wave that splashed us both with cool water. “What?”
I pointed again. “There! Try there!”
Rory nodded and turned the wheel in the direction of the small beach. It wasn’t the largest dock Bennett could’ve gone to, but it was definitely the closest and easiest, which if I was bringing a zombie on my own to the mainland is what I would’ve gone for.
The wind blew through my hair, and I grabbed for the elastic wrapped around my wrist. Twisting my hair into a tight braid, I watched Rory as he controlled the boat easily, as if he had been doing this all his life despite the increasingly choppy water. I wondered what was going through his head at this moment. Did he regret coming with me? Or maybe this was just his way of getting back to the mainland, and he’d dump my ass as soon as we touched ground, maybe even sending the cops my way. Not like I needed him, really. I was certain I’d be able to find Bennett without Rory’s help. I had been finding my way in this world alone since I was young, and nothing had changed now.
But it might be nice to have someone to bounce ideas off, since I no longer had James. A real, live sounding board. I didn’t need him to have pointless conversation with. I’d rather save my breath. But to see if my ideas were on the right track or not? Yeah, that might be nice.
I’d have to wait and see what his plan was once we got the boat to the mainland.