Chapter 7: Chapter Seven

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Night Owl Hotel

Reads: 8





I pull myself back inside for a second and pull out the only other gun we’ve acquired thus far. I glance at Vanessa, and her face is a mix of emotions. Her eyes are wide and dilated, and sweat lines her forehead. But she keeps glancing at the body lining our hood. I grip the steel roof and pull myself out, the gun gripped tight between my fangs. 


I swing a leg out and kick at the body. I would call it a corpse but there is still some life left inside, not a lot, but a little. The body starts to twitch just as I managed to land a solid kick that sent it tumbling to the ground with a resounding crack. I know even Witchy heard it when she flinches. I cast a glimpse around the surrounding area and am glad that she hasn’t figured out how to turn on the headlights. 


There are dozens of Bobbies scattered around our car. Most of them are limping and following at a slower pace. Others have just begun to Rot and are easily keeping up with the speed of our car, and we just can’t have that. 


“Yo, Vanessa, pick up the speed.” I lean my head down and try to see her eyes. She doesn’t look at me, but she does press her foot down harder, and the wind starts rushing through my locs even faster. For a moment, I enjoy the feeling of the air blasting across my skin by closing my eyes. I glimpse the area we’re passing and see white reflecting brilliantly from the moonlight. 


The jagged edges have been gnawed, making lines them. Abruptly a skull rolls out from the building the scatter and decimated bones lay next to, and hunched figures can be seen. Nothing but the glow of their eyes gives them away. They shine bright and cut through even the darkness of night. I suppose once you’re that far gone, they are no longer any reasons to hide them. Just a little bit further, and we’ll be in the clear.


“What happened to it?” Vanessa’s voice cuts through the silence and has an edge to it that I cannot identify. I can only hope she’s not about to go all slashy on me. Not sure if I can survive another one of those.


“You mean the Bobby?”




“Well I shot it, and then I pushed it off our car.”


“So, you just killed it.” She stated phlegmatically. Though by the trembling in her hands I knew it was a front.


“Nah, I didn’t kill it.” I lean my head down by the window and try to get a good look at her. 


“What do you mean?” She swings her head my way, and her hair makes her look even more wild and frenzied. Goddess, I hope she’s not becoming hysterical. If she can make it a little further, we can deal with her nerves once we’re in a more relatively safe position. 


“I mean a shot in the head ain’t gonna kill it. It’ll be down for a while, but it’ll bounce back. Or least most will. Honestly, that one looked on its last leg.” The car is jerked, and I turn to see one of the more bones than flesh Bobbies running upon us. Not tonight, you damn fucker. I shot one bullet, and it landed perfectly in his forehead. I guess all that huntin’ Dad forced on us growin’ up will come in handy after all. 


“Nate.” Vanessa is looking at me. “Are we in danger?” 


“Oh, Witchy,” I flash her a grin that shows off all my fangs “it’s nighttime out in the West. This is as dangerous as it gets.”


“That’s not what I meant.” Her grip on the tightens and her knuckles turn white. 


“I know whacha meant.”




“What do you want me to say, hmm? That we’re ridin’ in this car in the dead of night and are perfectly safe? Well, news flash, we ain’t safe. We’ll never be safe, so quit askin’.” My voice is tight, and I try my hardest not to actually raise my voice. Not only would it lure in the Bobbies, but I don’t know how Vanessa would react.


“I just want the truth.” Her voice quavers. I look at her, and she is trembling. 


“Witchy, are you alright?” 


“No. How could I possibly be okay? We have been chased by the NTSCU all day. You’ve been shot, several times and I had to dig out the bullets. I’m driving in the dark, and for all I know, we’re about to go over a cliff. I just want a second to rest or sleep or something. Am I asking for too fucking much?” Her voices get higher and higher with each word that passes through her lips. Little wisps of fire have formed and surround her figure. 


“Shit.” I slip back in the car and reach a hand towards her but stop just before I lay my hand down. “Witchy, it’s okay.”


“Stop calling me that. I hate that name.” Her voice wobbles, and tears have started streaking down her face. Of course, she couldn’t wait ten more minutes for her breakdown. Oh well, the most crucial thing is calming her down. 


“And do you wanna know why I call you that?” I lean close and make sure my breath rushes past her ear. She shakes her head, and I take that as my cue. “Because you are a strong being. You have power leakin’ from those fingertips.”


“Yeah, so glad they have a reason to hunt me.” 


“People hunt what they don’t understand, that’s the way of the world. Nothin’ anybody can do that will change that. But that’s okay.” She turns her head to slowly look at me. We’re getting closer to housing, and I want to reach out and grab the wheel, but I’m afraid it’ll break her connection with the car. Another thing to handle once we’re farther away. 


“How?” Witchy has that haunted look in her eyes that you know a person has been pushed past their limit. “You said it yourself; these Bobbies will eventually pop back up, and it’s’s just hopeless.” The flames get brighter and brighter, and I got to end this now, or we’re both done for. 


“No, it ain’t.” Her eyes finally meet mine, her shiny emerald’s looking glossy with her tears. “I know a little somethin’ ’bout survivin’ out here, okay. Just trust me.” She chomps down hard on her lip enough for the smell to wafter over to me, but the other Bobbies won’t notice it, and I count every blessing the Goddess gives out. “Please. I’ll get us out this mess.” 


“Okay.” The words barely leave her mouth, and if possible, she looks even more defeated, but the flames slowly die out, and only a few embers around her hands are left. Good enough, I guess. I throw my arm over her shoulders and she relaxes some more, even leans her head on me slightly. I’m uncomfortable. The position makes my muscles lock up something terrible and the console is digging into my ass. But Witchy is satisfied at the moment, and that’s all that matters. 


“Hey slow down a bit.” I glance around a bit and lean out the window to smell the air, and the scent of the Bobbies is almost non-existent. I look towards Witchy and get to see her priceless panic before she stomps down and I almost go through the window. “By the fuckin’ Goddess. I said, slow down, not stop completely.” 


“Sorry.” Too bad Witchy doesn’t look too particularly apologetic. She starts moving the car again and after a couple of minutes, I tell her we can stop. “Are you sure we can stop?” She once again nibbles on that lip. I'm gonna have to break that habit, dead give away. She parks the car by a spot of dense trees. I momentarily get out and snap some of the thicker branches off and throw them over the vehicle. I pick up a handful of dirt and rub it into the windows. As I slam the car door, Witchy is starting to look nervous again. 


“What’s the matter.”


“Will it be enough?” I try not to sigh at her question and just reach around her and find the lever that lowers the seat. “Wha-” She looks around as she basically lays against the backseats. 


“Even if it’s not I’ll be awake. So stop worryin’ and get some shut-eye.” I watch as she eventually lays her head down. I pull some random clothes from the duffle and ball it up and plunge it under her head. Slowly her eyes start to close, and eventually, her breathing evens out. I lean back in my seat and cross my arms behind my head. I close my eyes and focus on the sounds around us and her light snores.

I wake with a groan and reach up to feel the back of my head. I briefly look down and note the thick layer of blood that covers my hand. Well, ain’t that great. I pick up my head as several pairs of feet come my way. I catch a view of Vanessa before she’s quickly pushed back behind whom I’m going to assume is the leader. He is one of the only ones without Rot setting though he appears to be as unstable as the rest.

“Well, well, well. Look, everybody, our guest has awakened.” He turns his back to me and in that second, I snatch a better view of Vanessa. Her face is stone-cold, but her eyes show wariness. Good. She knows what they are and won’t hesitate to listen to me. But it’s her face that throws me for a loop. Her top lip is busted, and her left has a shiner underneath. I want to let loose the growl that’s building in my chest but have no idea what this fool’s plan is, and I can’t show my hand too quickly. 


“Yeah sorry, we didn’t mean to wreck the meal too much, but whew she’s a fighter. I have no idea how you kept control of her.” Everything just stops and though there are several bodies separating us I can feel Vanessa staring me down. I go to open my mouth and fix the cluster of a fuck up that he’s made. But the idiot just keeps talking. “So you don’t mind, right? Sharing her? I mean she’s a little on the small size, but I’m sure we can all get a decent meal.”


“Nate, what the hell is he talking about?” She tries to step forward, but a girl, with the whole left side of her face sagging real low, grabs her and tries to keep her in place. The leader gets a glint in his eye and turns to Vanessa. 

“You can’t be telling me what I think you’re telling me.” He keeps going as if this is one big joke. “Why we’re talking about you becoming our gourmet meal.” I know where this is going and by the look on Vanessa’s face, as she keeps looking from me to the others in the room and back to me, so has she. “After all, all us Bobbies got to stick together.

Submitted: November 22, 2020

© Copyright 2020 J.C. Walker99. All rights reserved.


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