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The First of Them

Short story By: Sentinel1998
Thrillers



While out on a camping trip with his two friends, jack begins to notice strange things going on in the woods.


Submitted:Sep 4, 2013    Reads: 102    Comments: 2    Likes: 1   



My name is Jack Starnes, and i just finished high school. I'm eighteen and decided to go camping with my friends, Amanda and Carter. This was their last days in town, for they were going to apply at universities miles away. We drove out of the city and onto the highway. We left at around 9am because the drive was long and tedious . At around seven am we approached the camping site and got our bags. Amanda and I set up the tent while Carter got the other stuff. Once we were done it was only eight pm. We sat around the campfire all night, talking, telling stories and having a few good laughs. It was surrounded by trees and bushes, and you always got that feeling you were being watched from the shadows just beyond the glow of the flame.
After a few hours of talking we all grew very tired, so we decided to sleep. Carter and Amanda were the first to head inside the tent. I was about to go in when i realised i had left my sleeping bag in the car. I quickly slipped on my shoes and ran to the vehicle. I searched and came to the conclusion of realising i had forgotten it. I kicked at the tire in frustration making a loud "thump" noise. Amanda peeked her head out of the tent, half eyes open and looked at me. "What are you doing?" She asked. I then took a deep breath and replied, "i forgot my sleeping bag, so i think i'm gonna sleep in the car tonight." She then gestured to come towards her. "You and I can share this sleeping bag if you want." With no other option i complied and did so. That night was a awkward and uncomfortable. I never really like Amanda that way, just as a friend. It even got more weird when she would moan and put her arms around me. I simply sighed and closed my eyes. That next morning i awoke exhausted and utterly sore. i saw that the tent door was open, but dismissed it as it might have been Amanda or Carter. It was also extremely hot, so i bolted out of tent inhaling and sweating. I took a few steps only to realise my car was gone. So i peeked back inside the tent to see who might have taken it. To my complete surprise Amanda and Carter were still sound asleep. It was about 7am and i didn't want to wake Carter because he gets extremely cranky, and Amanda just starts to argue. So i changed my clothes and started to walk down the trails. Old, large trees would tower over the small narrow trails, making it dark and creepy. As i kept walking, i got a text message from Carter. "Where r u??" It said. I texted back saying, "im looking 4 the car, i think someone stole it." As soon as i sent the message, i heard a faint beeping noise. I turned off the trail and into the woods. As i got closer, i noticed that it was a car alarm. It was all around me, beeping very loudly. I started to freakout but no car was in sight. I looked everywhere. Until i panicked and gave up. I then tilted my head up and cracked my neck, when i noticed my car...up in the trees. It was probably about 35 feet high, and dangling in old branches and vines. They started to snap and the vehicle was starting to make a creaking noise. I observed closer, and when i did...a loud "snap!" Emitted and the car cane plummeting down towards me. I dived out of the way into a nearby patch of grass. The front end of the vehicle smashed with the windows shattering, and countless things flying out. I took a moment to catch my breath, then i inspected. Everything was gone, except for one thing. My dash camera. I got it a couple years ago and kept it running. I never found anything useful but maybe a few things. But now it came in handy and may have actually recorded what happened to my vehicle. I took it off and rewinded through the footage. I stopped it at the time we went into the tent. I skipped ahead a couple hours. At 3:30 am i noticed something that caught my eye. It came from behind the tent. It was so obscure i could barely make out. It was a skinny, human like figure. It was on all fours but silhouetted in the darkness. It crept up to the door of the tent. The way it moved was sick, but also suspiciously. Like it was actually looking for something, and not just roaming aimlessly. What happened next terrified me. It's long, skinny body inched it's way into the tent. I saw it approach my body and grasp it's arms around me. Then shortly afterwards another massive creature came from beyond the woods. It hoisted up the vehicle using only it's "hands" and carried it off the trail. Every second felt like a horror movie. I then watched it swing and throw the vehicle into the trees. I stopped the tape there and sat in discomfort and confusion. I then suddenly snapped back to reality, noticing the occurring danger that may or already has happened. I dropped the camera and sprinted back onto the trail. Every second i wasted was another that my friends could have been kidnapped or killed. This thought clouded my mind and i grew frantic, and started to panic as i lost track of time or where i was. Once i finally reached the camp, it was the exact same as i had left it, except something happened. Amanda was on the ground huddled up, crying in her arms. My heart sunk and i quickly ran over to her aid. "Oh my god...Are you okay? Where's Carter? Amanda?" She then slowly tilted her head up, making eye contact with me. "H-he...he was killed. C-Carter was taken..." She started to bawl more and loosen her body. I held my arms around her and told her it would be okay, altho not being entirely sure myself. I then asked, "what happened that last time you saw Carter?"she then gestured up and slowly raised her hand, and pointed her finger towards this dirt trail. I told her to come with me but she started flailing her arms screaming, "No! I don't want to go in there!" I then shook her "Amanda listen! If you stay here theres a chance of it coming back. At least if we go now there is still a chance to find Carter." She then stood up silently, tears still running down her face, and replied "okay." We didn't waste any more time afterwards. We darted down the trails, watching our every step. Eventually when we though all hope was lost, we came to a fork in the trail. The left way had a sign that read "to highway." And the right had a sign that read, "to forest cottage resorts." I have never heard of any cottage resorts in these woods. So we treaded carefully and quietly into the right fork. As we went farther, it felt the trees got older. There was a disgusting smell, and the area was slightly flooded, covering our feet. We approached and area of deep water with old twigs and branches covering it. Since there was no other way around, we resorted to going straight through. We swam up to these path-blocking branches and swam under the green, musky water. It was difficult, and we had to keep our eyes closed the whole time, but we had managed. When we got to the other side there was a hill. Amanda grew tiresome from witnessing that traumatic event. I helped her walk up the hill. Once we reached the top i couldn't it. We could see and entire cottage resort. It looked old and abandoned, which is why i have probably never heard of it. We walked down the hill and entered this tiny, remote village. It was repetitive. All buildings looked the same and were all lined up in rows. They were they 1 floor wooden cottages. I spotted an old chapel at the end, so i headed towards it. On the way i swear i could hear the sound of little feet quickly running around me from all sides. This scared Amanda and se squeezed my hand tight. When we got into the chapel we quickly noticed that this place had gone to hell a while ago. There were old film reels sprawled across the floor, and even guns. It was dark so i got out my small flashlight and looked around. I noticed on a small box it read, "Property of the United States Government. " i opened it up and found a bunch of rolled up film reels. I then noticed a projector facing at the wall. I gestured to Amanda to switch it on. There was a couple sputtering noises but to my complete surprise, it worked. I took out one of the film reels and put it on. It read "Final test#91. Date:4/10/77. " as it started up it showed a bunch of people in the cottages. The cameras were set up at angles from the ceiling. You heard a countdown emitting, saying "contamination in three...two...one. Engaging"the events that followed shocked me. There were about twenty people in each cabin. A gas was released that doused all the people inside. They started to cough and gag , and collapsed to the floor. They would have seizures and make strange growling noises, while barfing up vomit. I was sick of watching this, and Amanda was looking away and covering her ears. Seconds after all this they stopped, and went limp. I thought i had just witnessed a bunch of innocent people get killed. That was until their limbs started moving. It was all terrifying to watch as their bones snapped and cracked, and how their skin rapidly decayed. Moments after they started to growl and drool, and i saw up close their eyes were sunken and a dark white. They started to claw at the walls and tear it down. They eventually broke out along with all the
other test subjects and went infecting them all with just a scratch or a bite.the whole camp was driven into chaos as the people attacked one another. I was terrified by what i was seeing and Amanda stood facing the other way screaming, "Turn it off!"
So i did, i knocked down the projector with a swift kick at it's side. It fell to the floor with the glass shattering and the film reels spinning out of control. Moments later it became so quiet, i stood in frozen as Amanda continued to cry. She was on the other end of the room by the front doors, and i was at the back. I got curious and searched through the papers but it was all jumbled. Just a ton of numbers and equations. I then found and audio recorder, just on the ground beneath one of the papers. I picked it up. It was dark grey and rusty, with powdery dirt on it. I blew it off and noticed there three buttons. Play, record and stop. There was also two arrows facing up and down reading, "log select." I went to the most recent log, and pressed play. This is what i heard. "Hello, this is my last audio recording, all the test subjects broke out of the buildings and i'm held up in the church. Test subject Z-14 has become extremely mutated and grew exponentially in size. It's complete chaos out here, please if anyone gets this recording, come to these coordinates, X: 817~ oh no... They broke in, my god they broke in! Please someone whoever ge- stay away! Stay aw-" after that there was alot of static, followed by what sounded like gunshots. I had no words to speak, i just set down the audio recording and looked at Amanda. I saw her stood in shock, staring at something behind me. There, about ten feet away from me, was Carter. He stood there hanging his arms and had grey skin and like a dark moonlight. His eyes were sunken and upon tilting his head upward toward us, i could see they were a dead, lifeless, white. He slowly opened his mouth , drooling from the lips as he did. He let out a hideous growl and his facial expression went from subtle to manic. He sprinted towards me with his hands stretched out, about to grab me. I reacted and i grabbed the shattered glass from the projector and stabbed it in his neck. Blood spurted out coming onto my hand. I took it out and continued stabbing his chest repeatedly until he let out a very harsh moan, before collapsing to the floor dead. Utter shock trembler throughout my whole body, and i could feel my hands squeezing the glass i just killed my best friend with. I started to cry at the realisation of what i have done, but i know it was for a good purpose. If i hadn't of acted he could have killed Amanda and I in a heartbeat. I Began to get furious of this situation and looked at Amanda. I headed towards her. When suddenly a heard a loud roar emitting just from outside the church. I did not know what it was nor did i wish to. I said to Amanda, "let's get the hell out of here." She then nodded and headed for the doors. As she opened it a large hand reached in and grabbed her. I was screaming so loud, and so was she. But it could not have compared to the massive roar over our voices. It had her my the waist. She began to yell, "Help Jack it's crushing me!!" I began to sprint toward her, telling myself i was crazy and that there is now way in hell i would survive. Then suddenly, when i was only feet away, the hand made into a fist, crushing her body and making her skin like a bag with red fluids flowing out. I screamed and fell on my back. The hand opened, letting her crushed bones and forth being dropped to the floor. The hand reached in and tried swatting at me. I was back far enough for it not to catch me. About five minutes after, it must have grew tired, and stomped away. It was a terrifying feeling, knowing i was alone, and that this hideous monster was outside waiting for me. I noticed the weapons on the floor, i didn't think they would do much to that ...giant. But one thing i knew for sure is that there was more out there. Those infected people. I was taught how to use basic assault rifles and pistols by my father. He always use to tell me, "when all else fails, the trigger is your safety." I picked up an M4 and loaded it with a clip, and strapped a couple more on my belt. I then took a holster and put a 9mm pistol in it. I was about to walk out when i noticed something on the ground. It was a baton, i picked it up and walked out. As i exited the church the sun was going down. I panicked a little but kept telling myself to keep it together. I slowly stepped down the stairs, while watching every area i could. When i reached the bottom i stepped on a an old corpse's ribs, letting out a loud crack. This frightened me and i jumped back. The thing that scared me more was that it wasn't there when i had entered. So i aimed my gun at it's head, as soon as i did it began to growl. I pulled the trigger faster than i thought. It's head exploded with brains and blood going on my shoes. I felt suddenly relived, for a moment, because the sounds afterwards are what made me panic. It was the sounds of countless growls and feet running across the dirt. It sounded like so many, maybe thirty to forty people. I freaked. I sprinted toward the exit of the camp and as i reached the hill i could see, the whole camp was full of hundreds of infected, even more then there should have been. They started coming up the hill and i just shot, i kept shooting my gun , blowing heads up and having countless bodies fall back down. I eventually ran out of ammo. Seeing there was no point in reloading, i ran away. I ran to where my camp had been. I kept running down the narrow trails, with the hordes of infected chasing behind me. I was sweating and crying at the same time, saying repeatedly to myself, "it'll be okay...i'll be okay." And to be honest it worked for me, that is until i squinted ahead of me. There was that massive beast, sprinting toward me with brute force. It's skin was grey and bloody, and veins popping out. It let out a loud hideous roar. I simply ducked in fear of dying, and saw it run right by me, it went into the crowd of infected and started to tear them apart. The infected were then jumping on it attacking, tearing away at it. It reminded me of the film Jurassic park, at the ending where the velociraptors attack the tyrannosaurus. But this was no time to have movie flashbacks, i ran to the camp and got in my vehicle. It started up with that purr i missed so much. I drove off, and out into the highway. I tried to listen to the radio, maybe get all this madness off my chest. To my surprise, it was all static. I went though every station until i cam across one that was labeled "emergency broadcast." Thats when i got frightened, and turned up my radio. The man on it was saying "the state has fallen under a rapid spreading infection, please everyone, lock your doors and stay inside until further notice. We have it under control." I drove over the hill and saw the city i lived in. It was engulfed in fires and screams. I didn't know what to do. All that was a blur afterwards. I remember being sent through checkpoints, seen families torn apart, etc. no one on earth ever heard or seen that large mutant since the day the infection began. Well, it is now twenty years later from that event, and i'm held up in a military quarantine. I'm getting old in my age, but so is this guy Joel. I remember he was like an older brother to me, well...a lot older. He's a good man, but boy, does he ever miss his daughter. Unfortunately, she died the night of the infection, she was shot by a military soldier. This is where my story ends, i'm sure Joel would like to tell people his, i'm just not sure how he plans on doing that...





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