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Postby iamdavidbyrne » Thu Jul 01, 2010 3:35 pm

Bolt-Action: 1
Beyond Here Lies Nothin’

It didn’t take as long as they thought to get the smell of dead bodies out of the air or at least that’s what my father would say before he died like the others…

Dylan sits perched on top of the crumbling skyscraper barely sixteen he was still a child in his mother’s eyes. He was joined by his childish friends. Theo who he considered an absolute waste of space, which always seemed amusing since his obesity caused him to literally take up the most space. Jackson was a wiry bound ball of nerves kept heavily medicated with prescription pills.

These were his friends. There weren’t many other choices.

Jackson takes aim at the street below gripping firmly to his assault rifle as he glares through the scope. He quietly taunts his prey. “Come on a little closer. Come on.”

Theo peers off the side of the building. “You’re not going to kill him. You’re going to miss like you always do.”

“Shut up, Theo.” He pulls the trigger. BANG!

“A miss! Told you.”

Jackson quickly moves his rifle firing again. BANG!

“Oh my God, another miss!”

BANG! BANG! BANG! The shots ring out at an almost deafening pitch.

“Did I get him?”

Theo looks down at the street and then starts laughing hysterically his belly bouncing up and down with each laugh. “Seriously just give up, man. Hey Dylan, show him how it’s done.”

Dylan picks up an old, bolt-action rifle – the only remaining possession to prove his father’s existence on this world. Without a word, he stares into his scope.

Green tinted crosshairs scour the cavernous craters left in the asphalt. Something twitches ever so slightly from under the black tar.

He readies himself only the wind a distraction now. His shooting finger gently caresses the trigger as he waits for his shot.

A Feeder scurries from his hiding place into plain sight. It is a frightening large trilobite-like parasite. Its antennas twinge and without warming Dylan squeezes the trigger. BANG!

The Feeder doesn’t even put up a fight. It was an instant Kill Shot.

“Damn it, Dylan. You don’t even make it look like fun.”

That’s because to him it wasn’t. This was just the life they lead now.
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Tue Jul 06, 2010 8:33 am

Bolt-Action: 2
Never Gonna Be the Same Again

The Invasion happened 37 years ago.

You can still find a few people willing to talk about it. Everyone always described The Invasion as a “war” much like when the Americans stormed the beaches of Normandy, but I always thought a war meant two sides fighting against each other where both had the near equal opportunity for victory. We never stood a chance.

My mother was only 12 at the time. Her family moved to the city three weeks before The Day they Earth Shook. My grandfather had taken a new job at a Savings & Loan Bank on the Upper West side. It was a big move for the small family of four from the slower paced life they had grown accustomed to in Georgia. My mother strongly protested the decision to move to New York which she still reminds us about on all holidays after a few glasses of her homemade wine. She would have rather stayed in the South with her friends and the things that were familiar to her, but in the end her hometown was destroyed and her friends were all killed.

It was my grandfather’s new job that saved them all. No one knew it was coming. No one had any fair warning. I’m sure some super secret branch of our government had an idea, but they never could have predicted the outcome.

The Day the Earth Shook started like any other day. It was opening weekend for the Yankees. They were playing the Red Soxs in what was suppose to be a truly terrific start to the season. My grandfather had gotten tickets for the entire family through his new company. They were remarkable seats along the third base line, but they would never make it to the game. No one did.

His company had planned on tailgating at the office before heading down to the game. My mother can still recall the small details. She remembers climbing into the car and driving to the party. It was one of those first days of spring where everything is magical. The sun shined brightly into the car warming the upper part of her white thighs in a skirt that my mother and grandmother had fought over the appropriateness of its length. She claims it was the last of God’s beautiful days.

They were four blocks from the office when the ground started to rumble. At first they thought it was coming from their car. A flat tire perhaps, but the rumbling kept growing with intensity. By the time they arrived to his office, the entire city feared it was an earthquake. Later reports would estimate that 85% of the world experienced the same horrific events.

Everyone took to the streets thinking the buildings would collapse at any moment. No one even realized that their rib cages were also vibrating. In fact, my grandfather watched as his boss fell flat on his face dead. He clutched his Yankees’ jersey over his heart as his pacemaker shattered inside his chest.

This is when the droning began. It sounded like a hundred industrial machines starting up. They blanketed the entire sky. Everyone turned their heads to the heavens and watched as clouds pulled together in spiraling masses. Once The Drones reached their brain-rattling worst, a sonic bomb blast was release from the center of each cloud sending down wisps of clouded smoke rings. Tidal waves of destruction rolled out in all directions.

Acting on sheer instinct and adrenaline, my grandfather dragged everyone inside the bank loading them all into the vault. They would ride the remainder of the attack out from inside the confines of the steel fortress. For thirty minutes, The Drones, completely invisible to the eye, continued their sonic onslaught on the entire world.

For a brief moment afterwards, my mother remembers millions of shards of glass raining down from the still standing skyscrapers. As they fell, the sunlight caught each one sending out infinite cascades of sparking white light. She followed the falling glass to the ground where the awe-inspiring beauty collided into the macabre as the blood of the innocent collected in red rivers that ran from the gutters down into the sewers.

She claims that this was the last of God's beautiful days... I am afraid she is right.
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Wed Jul 07, 2010 2:00 pm

Bolt-Action: 3
Ninety Miles an Hour (Down a Dead End Street)

Dylan watched as the blood of The Feeder drained down into the asphalt crevices, and like clockwork a small pack of Feeders emerged from the rubble quickly devouring their fallen comrade. No sympathy. No sign of regret. Just survival of the fittest I guess.

Jackson scrambles to reload, but Dylan stops him by simply putting his hand on Jackson’s shoulder

“Let me at least kill one.”

“They’ll be there tomorrow… and the next day. Dylan pauses and looks down as The Feeders carry off the final remains down into the sewers. “Come on let’s go home.”

“All right, but I’m killing an entire pack tomorrow.”

Theo reaches into his satchel and pulls out his slider. “Like Hell you will.” He laughs hysterically as he locks his slider to the overhead cable. With a quick step, he jumps off the side of the building. His laughing can still be heard as he whizzes down an entire city block.

Jackson hopelessly steps to the edge of the building. Dylan throws an arm around him. “Don’t let him get to you.”

“I won’t.” Jackson takes out his slider and locks on. “Hey Dylan, you think you can teach me to kill like you.”

“You’re already a good shot.”

“We’ll all be old enough to try out for The Firefighters next year, and I want to make sure that I get in.”

“You’ll get in for sure.”

“You really think so?”

“Definitely.” A goofy smile crosses Jackson’s face. “I’ll help you with your shooting tomorrow.”

Jackson jumps with glee off the building and sails down the cable.

Dylan takes out his slider and walks with it back to the absolute beginning of the cable and locks onto it.

He takes a deep breath and then fearlessly sprints to the edge. Dylan dives over in swam-like fashion as he races down the cable. He swoops down upon a city riddled in despair as he makes his way home to the Woolworth Building. This was the preferred mode of transportation in the days after the war.

The aliens left us prisoners here and to ensure we did not try to escape the aliens dusted the city with Feeder eggs. They nested deep in the sewers and subways with each nest hosting a Queen Feeder. Eventually they took over the entire city. During the summer months when the breeding is highest, they cover the ground like locusts.

The remaining survivors took to the skyscrapers to live barricading the ground floors to prevent any form of a Feeder attack. Soon zip lines and rope bridges were constructed to help people travel from one building to the next.

There are some people nowadays who have never stepped foot on the ground or held dirt in their hands. They just waste their days away huddled up in an abandon cubicles or offices, but for the most part life continued on normally for the survivors. Boys grew up inspiring to be Firemen. Now these men are different than the Firefighters of old.

Today’s Firemen actually make and cause fire, which was quickly discovered as the most effective way for killing large groups of Feeders. Firemen monitor the base floors of all skyscrapers ensuring proper barricades. In the winter they will patrol the streets, and several times a year they are sent down into the sewers and subways to burn down entire nests and kill the Queen.

As quickly as the aliens arrived they vanished without much of a trace. Some think they went back to their home planet wherever that might be, but the majority believe they have set up bases somewhere outside the city. I have to agree with the majority because why else would you attack and nearly eradicate an entire population and just leave.

There has been a recent and mysterious occurrence of abductions of people from the skyscrapers. We can only assume it’s the aliens because no one has actually seen one.

The Firemen have been put in charge of the investigation.
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Thu Jul 08, 2010 10:09 am

Bolt-Action: 4
This Dream of You

Dylan opened the front door to his home to find his mother asleep in her chair. It could hardly be called a “home”; it was an office. He lived on the twenty-second floor of the Woolworth Building in what used to be the home office for the software company, Embed Solutions. He shared the floor with 46 other people. Some were small families, some were the elderly, and some were just crazy.

Over the years, Dylan learned about the company from the many internal documents and press material left scattered throughout after the building was evacuated. He did this mostly out of sheer boredom, but he gathered that Embed was the leader in nanotechnologies and on the forefront of introducing embeddable software. It was to be implanted and hardwired to the human brain turning external computing into internal computing controlled simply by our thoughts. In these now primitive times, it is something that reads more like science fiction than a possible reality, but it helped Dylan pass the time.

He tried to close the door quietly, but she awoke with the slightest sound, an unbreakable habit since The Invasion.

“What time is it?” she mumbled still half asleep.

“It’s just after six.”

“Let me fix you something for dinner.”

She climbs out of her chair and walks into their makeshift kitchen. She opens a box and pulls out an unlabeled tin can.

“Beans okay?”

Dylan nods his head, but the truth of the matter is that he hated beans. They were something he ate just about every single night of his life. Once he tried to avoid them at all costs and ended up starving himself. His mother feared he was going to die, and the only solution to his problem was force-feeding the slopping mess of beans down his throat. If he hated them before he truly developed a disgust for them now, but he chose living over dying and so he eats whatever his mother gives him.

She opens the can and shakes them into two bowls and sets them on top of a computer desk. They humbly sit in rolling office chairs as they slowly shovel down the room temperature beans. His mother decides to break their silence.

“What did you do today?”

Dylan shrugs his shoulders as he musters enough strength to swallow another bite.

“Won’t be long before you can try out for The Firefighters.”

He shrugs his shoulders again.

“Not talking tonight are we?”

“Mom, I don’t think I want to try out.”

His mother stops eating and stares blankly at her son.

“Why wouldn’t you want to be a Fireman?”

He shrugs his shoulders again and takes another bite just to avoid talking.

She gets up from the desk and walks over to the far wall where a few pictures hang behind broken glass frames. She looks at them deeply and fondly holding her hand over heart.

His mother points to one of his father. “He was a great soldier you know? Maybe one of the best we had.” His father stands proudly amongst a group of men. Not much older than Dylan, he holds his bolt-action rifle. “He fought in the war when must everyone else ran. Your father believed that this world was worth fighting for, and he would want you to do the same.”

She slowly moves back to the desk and sits down. “Plus your brother would be greatly disappointed. He has been with The Firemen for over five years now.”

Dylan finishes his beans and has nothing left to distract his attention from his mother.

“Did you know they were thinking about asking him to start up a special division to investigate the abductions?”

He looks up from his bowl with some bit of surprise.

“That got your attention. See there can be some exciting opportunities with The Firefighters plus Theo and Jackson will all be trying out.”

Dylan rolls his eyes.

“What? Now you don’t like your friends either? Dylan, you can’t spend the rest of your life just wasting it away here. It is time for you to become the man you weren’t meant to be.”

Dylan gets up and cleans his bowl.

“I’m going to the roof.”

“Just think about it okay?”

“I will.”

“And be careful up there.”

“I will…”

The roof was some place Dylan went to be by himself. It was always quiet and during the summer times it made for an excellent place to sleep. The higher elevation always caught a nice wind draft.

Now usually New York was one of the worst places to look at the stars, but since electricity has been limited to just a few generators that are regularly shut off at night the views from the rooftop are absolutely perfect and tonight was no different.

Dylan rested on his back and as the clouds parted and the heavens were revealed. He folded his hands behind his head and counted the shooting stars as he slowly drifted off to sleep.

Maybe tonight his dreams would be as peaceful as the cosmos. Maybe…
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Tue Jul 13, 2010 4:22 am

Bolt-Action: 5
High-Water (for Charlie Patton)

I dreamed of The Invasion again. More than just a dream, it was a nightmare and one that haunted me most nights. It always seemed entirely too real, everything in crisp details as if I had fought alongside my father.

After The Drones, any alien presence grew silent, but not the presence of mankind. Countries quickly turned on each other thinking someone had to be blamed for the attacks. It became a nuclear showdown to see which Country would blink first. No one backed down and no one laid claim to the devastation, but they had not yet seen the worst.

Korea was the first to retaliate. They launched a nuclear warhead in the dead of night aimed directly at Los Angeles. The American government scrambled to find a way to stop it, but in the wake of The Drones our reliance on back-up plans all but failed. We were only left with our prayers. As families huddled together under candle light vigils, their prayers were answered. I still don’t know to this day whether those prayers were answered by God or Devil.

As the warhead blistered across the sky high above the Pacific, it detonated sending out a wave of fury that colored the night sky. For a brief moment it looked glorious, but the warhead did not malfunction it had collided with something. There in the nothingness right in front of our very eyes, it had made a direct hit with one of their ships. A massive electrical storm rang out after the blast. Lighting charges danced wildly as they wrapped the entire spacecraft. The once invisible ship now could be seen by all. How long had it been there? Were they always watching us?

It was a one and a million shot they said for that warhead to find that ship hovering silently in the night, but the odds were really stacked high that the accidentally attack would actually bring it down.

The spacecraft lurched towards the ocean. Despite its massive size, it seemed to fall slowly and with a sense of grace. There was something poetic about this great piece of advanced machinery crashing into water. The explosion of water nearly rivaled that of the warhead. Tidal waves raced out in all directions towards every coast kissed by the Pacific. If The Drones did not completely annihilate cities and towns, the Tidal waves surely finished the job. I’ve heard from a few people that the wall of water reached at least two hundred miles inland completely wiping the landscape clean.

The aliens did not find anything poetic or glorious about the warhead. They saw it as a sign of retaliation, and as Bugs Bunny use to say, “Of course you know, this means war.”
Last edited by iamdavidbyrne on Wed Jul 14, 2010 4:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Wed Jul 14, 2010 4:16 am

Bolt-Action 6:
Dark Eyes

The screams woke me up, and I must admit it was a pleasant departure from my nightmares.

I jumped out of my sleep almost rolling off the edge of the building. I quickly got my bearings and crawled to the edge as the screams continued. They were coming from the building across the way. Even with daylight breaking, it was still difficult to fully see what was happening, but there was no doubting what was going on next door.

The screams were from a woman far older than my mother. I wanted to help her, but there wasn’t a cable connecting our buildings and the closest rope bridge was on the twelfth floor. I would never make it, and I must be honest curiosity did get the better of me. I had only heard the ghost stories and myths and each one varied greatly in their details. In my dreams they were always blurred fragments hidden in the shadows. Till this moment, I had never seen one of the aliens in person.

There were two of them, and they pulled the women by her feet right out of bed dragging her towards the front door. She tried to fight, but she was no match for them.

I was surprised by how tall they were. They ducked their heads as they moved magnetically from room to room. Their bodies, ghastly pale and thin, darted in and out of the shadows seeming almost abnormally stretched. Withering snake-like arms and hands nearly dragged the ground. Their lower bodies were quite the opposite with rather short legs, but what they lacked in length they made up for in build. They were a thick mass of muscles wrapped tightly in reptilian scales.

I continued to watch the horror unfold. The woman seemed to find me in the dark staring helplessly as she was abducted. Knowing there was nothing I could do for her, she grew silent as they pulled her out the door. She disappeared quickly and all was silent except for the pounding of my heart and the throbbing of my temples.

One of the aliens returned to the home moving with an unnatural glide. It moved from room to room but stopped abruptly. It turned towards me walking towards the completely exposed side of the building. The alien stood at the edge of the broken down window looking up at me through blank, soulless eyes sunken deep into a sickly worn down face. Surely this face would haunt my nightmares from now on.

I could not pull my eyes away from the alien. Its eyes bore straight into my brain. Was it trying to read my mind? It moved even closer as if it was going to walk across the air towards me.

The door to the rooftop kicked open wildly. My heart nearly burst from the inside out. It was Buck, my brother. He ran to my side in his full Firemen uniform and an assault rifle at the ready. Buck aimed quickly down at the alien and fired. The alien took a direct hit in the arm, but the bullet barely even phased it.

It crouched slightly and leaped out the window. My brother took another shot, but as the alien fell it quickly vanished and the bullets ricocheted off the side of the skyscraper.

Buck dropped his rifle. “Son of a bitch. You okay?”

He kicked lightly at my side.

“Hello? You alright?”

“Yeah”. I must admit my mind was reeling, and I was still trying to catch my breath. “Where did it go?”

“The damn things have some sort of way to teleport or cloaking device. I don’t know what it is. I don’t care what it is. I just want the suckers dead.”

“They abducted that women.”

“And why didn’t you do anything to stop it… That’s because you weren’t carrying your rifle.”

Sometimes he was a sarcastic asshole, and obviously his new role was going straight to his head but today he was right.

“From now on you carry your gun with you at all times. Sleep with it by your side at night, and when one of those things shows up again blast it right off this planet.”

“Why are they doing this?”

“We’re not too sure, but we’ll find out why soon enough. Now let’s see what mom’s got for breakfast.”

Buck said it like today maybe she was going to have a full Thanksgiving feast prepared by Julia Child spread out on fine china.

He helped me up as we walked back inside.

“What were you doing up here anyway?”


He laughed to himself. “I always knew you were a little different."
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:05 pm

Bolt-Action: 7
As I Went Out One Morning

Here he came… Theo. I knew it was only a matter of time before he reared his ugly head. The woman from last night was abducted from his building. He never was going to let Jackson and I hear the end of it, and now here he came running.

“Hey, guys! Did you hear, did you hear?”

“Hear what?” Jackson asked.

“The old lady who live in the All-State Office in my building was taken last night.”

Jackson’s eyes lit up. “Take by what?”

“The aliens d’uh. Jackson, don’t be so dumb. She was abducted.”

With the way Theo recounted the story you would have thought he was in the room when it happened. “They drug that crazy bat right out of her bed and crushed her skull. Her brain splattered right on the floor. I tried to see what it looked like this morning, but the Firemen had already blocked everything off.”

This was a regular occurrence with him. If we would let him he would go on about it all day, and each time he told the story he would drastically embellish the facts. I swear sometimes he is worse than the old timers.

“That alien’s just lucky that I wasn’t there. I would have shot it dead.” He play fires as if he was mowing down an entire cornfield.

“Buck couldn’t even kill it and actually there were two of them.

“What do you know?” Theo asks with a sarcastic tone.

“I saw her from the rooftop last night get abducted. Buck shot at one of them. I don’t even think the bullet pierced the skin.”

“Well, I mean come on… Buck’s a Fireman not a sharpshooter like me.”

“Just leave my brother out of this.”

“Oh yeah, what are you going to do about it.”

Theo shoved me fairly hard in the chest, and I pushed him back. Before I knew it, we were going at it. I have wanted to punch him in the face for so long, and I would have knocked him out if Jackson hadn’t gotten in the way.

“Quit fighting!”

Jackson shoves us both away in opposite directions. It was the most emotion I’ve ever seen out of him. Maybe he would make a great Fireman.

Theo catches his breath as Jackson calms us down.

“If Buck couldn’t even kill one then what can we do.”

I picked up my bolt-action and shook it with affirmation.

“We practice.”
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Fri Jul 16, 2010 2:58 pm

Bolt-Action 8

We always called it “The Arcade”, but it was really nothing more than just a protected spot in the sewer at the bottom of a manhole… the ultimate shooting gallery. It wasn’t much of a hangout, but we did spend a large portion of our time down there. I remember Theo once stole a bottle of homemade wine from his mother and we all got incredibly drunk for the first time.

The three of us climbed down into the rebar cage surrounded by total darkness. Even though you couldn’t see a thing, you could hear The Feeders moving. Their antennas twitched as they crawled over each other in a massive pile. Now it was time for my favorite part.

We all turned on our flashlights shining them into the cavernous sewer before us. It was always so much fun to watch the little bastards scurry. The fear didn’t last long before they quickly turned on the defensive. The Feeders charged us, but they were stopped when they hit the rebar wall. They gnawed at the metal cage trying desperately to kill us.

I slung by bolt-action around, “Who’s first.”

Jackson took his gun and loaded it with a round. “I need the most practice.”

Theo didn’t seem to fully forgive our earlier encounter as he sulked in the corner.

“Alright Jackson, you’re up.”

I stepped up to the front as Jackson moved to the back wall taking a knee.

“Let’s work on your armor kills.”

One of The Feeders began to crawl towards the ceiling exposing its underbelly. It looked similar to the bottom of a turtle’s shell.

“See the grooves in the armor on that one.”

Jackson nodded his head.

“The key is to aim for right where the grooves crisscross. There is a soft spot in the plating right there. Okay… Fire when ready.”

Jackson readied himself and took a quick shot. I didn’t even bother to look whether he killed it or not. I knew it was a miss. I could easily tell because for one thing it was Jackson shooting, but aside from that it was all in the sound.

From the moment his finger grabbed the trigger, it was all wrong. You should gently wrap your finger around the trigger feeling your warm blood rushing against the cold steel. As you and the gun become one only then are you ready to shoot.

Jackson’s bullet left the barrel wildly, but the bullet should always leave the barrel with a sense of purpose and that should be to kill. Any other thoughts, and you are just wasting your time.

You could hear the bullet deflect off the armor. A bullet when it pierces the skin is like a dream. The bullet flies at an amazing speeds ripping through the flesh as it transfers its scolding, hot heat to your victim’s blood.

Like I said, I didn’t need to look the sound was all off.

“Fire again.”

Jackson bites his lower lip as he concentrates hard on setting his sites in the right spot. BANG!

I closed my eyes and listened to echo of the gun ring out. It was a like a symphony.


Jackson didn’t fire again. He stood up and looked closely ahead. I opened my eyes to find Jackson and Theo staring practically straight through me. They were speechless.

I turned around and immediately understood why. On the other side of the rebar amidst The Feeders was a girl.

We all shook our heads in disbelief and rubbed our eyes to make sure we weren’t dreaming, but there she was as real as could be. She wouldn’t be real for much longer if The Feeders caught sight of her.

We all yelled at her to get out of there, but she didn't even acknowledge us.

“Alright guys, I’m going see if I can get to her before she kills herself. I’ll need some help. Just keeping shooting at them and see if you can get a feeding frenzy going on the dead bodies.

I took off up the manhole ladder as I heard the two of them start firing wildly. They weren’t all kill shots, but they just might keep this girl alive.
Last edited by iamdavidbyrne on Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Mon Jul 19, 2010 3:30 pm

Bolt-Action: 9
If Dogs Run Free

I fell into the sewer under a blaze of gunfire. The Feeders indeed had started feasting upon the dead, but for how long.

The girl was just off in the distance, so I ran after her. She wandered through the concrete maze inquisitively seeming to take notes around every turn. I quietly sneaked up behind her and grabbed her by the shoulders. I could tell I frightened her, but she did not even scream. She immediately followed through with a right hand cross that hit harder than anything Theo ever threw.

I was completely thrown off guard and fell to the ground. My hands instinctively tried to break my fall splashing down into the murky waters. The disturbance garnered the attention of The Feeders. Their antennas all twitched and homed in on us. Not the entire Firemen squad’s gunfire would save us now.

I bounced back up and took hold of her wrist and ran with her back to the exit. She didn’t put up a fight this time as I pulled her. The Feeders quickly closed the distance between the two of us. Theo and Jackson stopped firing, afraid that they might hit one of us.

As we reached the ladder, I turned to find The Feeders just mere feet from us. The girl turned calmly and reached into her satchel. She pulled out a small metal box and held it out in front of her. She pressed a button and a horrendous, high pitch squeal erupted from the box. I fell to my knees in agonizing pain. I clutched my ears to soften the assault, but it proved to only give a slight relief. As my eardrums rang from deep inside my head, I noticed that The Feeders had stopped their advancement and had actually begun to slowly retreat. I was disoriented and surely now my ears must be bleeding.

This time the girl grabbed my shoulder shoving me towards the ladder. I climbed up in a hurry more to escape the noise than The Feeders. The noise subsided, and the girl raced up the stairs behind me. The Feeders seemed only irritated by the noise and took after us. We ascended the ladder as fast as our arms and legs could carry us.

I pulled myself onto the asphalt street above and slid the manhole lid over the hole just as soon as the girl was out. The Feeders hit the metal cover with a sickly thud. It would only serve as a temporary setback before they would bust out for sure.

The girl and I sprinted down the war-torn streets. The ever present sound of Feeders marching in the distance. Our hearts raced and blood pulsed, we ran till our legs would no longer carry us another step. There was an abandoned storefront up ahead, and we ran for its protection. Once inside, I was the first to collapse. I fell to the floor and looked up as I slipped out of consciousness. The room stopped spinning as my eyes closed and blackness filled my world. The girl was gone.
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Re: Bolt-Action

Postby iamdavidbyrne » Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:01 pm

Bolt-Action: 10
House of the Risin’ Sun

As I blacked out, I had a vision of the War. This felt far different from any of the dreams I had. I stood at the water’s edge of a deserted beach. I picked up a handful of sand and let it run through my fingers. It felt like silk slowly being swept away. The ocean waves rolled gently crashing onto the shore. A crescent moon hung high in the sky shyly peaking its head from behind the clouds. Somehow it all felt so real. The problem is I have never stepped foot on a beach before in my life… but my father had.

My father was a child of the Mid-West. He was completely landlocked and joined the military right out of high school. It was his way to try and see the world. He was first stationed in Norfolk Beach, Virginia. I know it is not exactly seeing the world, but to my father is might as well been. He would steal away to the shoreline whenever he could and sit down on the sand to watch the sunrise. Right there in those first few minutes of the day, he felt like he could see the entire world.

I can remember some of my bedtime stories when I was very little and my father always described this beach. It was a very special and magical place. I found myself sitting down in the sand like my father waiting for the sun.

A bright light began to creep from below the horizon. It burned a bright white something I don’t remember my father ever describing. I soon realized this wasn’t the sunrise. The small ball of light began to race against the curve of the earth leaving behind a sparkling trail that scorched the sky. As it reached overhead more lights began to shine on the horizon. Slowly one by one, the sky was covered in glittering trails of light and for a brief moment it was brighter than daylight. I could actually feel their warmth, and I’m sure my skin was already beginning to burn slightly. The lights raced from one horizon towards the other and the darkness began to creep upon the beach once again.

Once the lights all disappeared and the last shreds of night returned, there was a beautiful silence and then the ground began to shake. Each spec of sand seemed to vibrate and pulse wildly rising off the ground like a storm of fleas. I raced from the beach towards the top of the dunes, my feet all the while struggling desperately to find hard ground in the soft sand.

When I reached the top of the dunes, I couldn’t see much in the darkness. I look back towards the water and noticed that the real sun was beginning to rise. I waited with bated breath as the light chased off the darkness with its magnificent spiral of reds and oranges. I turned to the other horizon and could slowly start making out the aftermath.

My father came here to see the world. I was here and felt I could see the entire universe unfurl as countless dark clouds rose high above mushrooming in all directions. The War had begun and not even the brightest sun would be able to chase away that nightmare.
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