How did this happen? Why did the smart infected chase me? What happened to Vlad? Not only Vlad, but everyone else. There were so many bodies to eat, but it still came after me. My arms and legs were stabbed so many times. I can’t feel them anymore. I’m cold. I’m scared. It took my helmet off, pushed my face into the ground. I can’t even scream anymore. Why is it doing this? Is it going to eat me? It could’ve eaten me a long time ago. What is it doing?
It’s taking off my clothes. I can’t resist. When I wriggle, it hits me. I’m losing too much blood. If it weren’t for the pain, I would’ve fainted already. I’m sure of it. What is it doing now? That’s the first-aid kit. It’s unraveling the gauze and cutting off a huge slice. Is it…, is it wrapping my leg? After damaging my leg in the first place, it’s trying to fix it? What the hell is it trying to do? It’s tightening the gauze so much; it feels like my leg is going to be cut off. Three times, four times, five times. The gauze keeps going around and around.
My vision’s blurring. The edges of my sight are turning orange. Why orange? That’s such a strange color to turn. The orange is spreading towards the center of my sight. I’m going to die. My hearing’s gone. All I can hear is a high-pitched whine.
I woke up to the sound of groaning coming from below. I was flying. Is this heaven? Or is it hell? I can’t move my arms or legs. What’s going on? Didn’t I die? The smart infected killed me. Then, I’m infected now? I’m still able to think. Vlad told me I wouldn’t be able to, but look at me now! I’m a smart infected too. But where am I? Why…, no, how…? I’m hanging in a tree. I’m naked. My arms and legs are bandaged. The gauze looks like it’s been bled through a lot. There’s a rope tied around my chest, cutting into my armpits. It’s holding me up. There’s another layer of gaze pinning my arms to my sides. Beneath me, there’s a few infected trying to grab me. I’m too high up for them to reach.
My voice cracked. My lips cracked too. I can taste blood on them. The inside of my mouth feels like cotton. How long have I been hanging here? Am I really dead? If I am, why are the infected trying to eat me? Infected never eat their own. Then does that mean I’m still alive? I should’ve bled to death. Why am I still alive? That smart infected saved me?
“Somebody, help me.”
I don’t think anyone’s going to come. I’m thirsty and hungry and sore all over. I can’t feel my toes. Are they frostbitten? My skin looks gray and blue. The sun’s out. I think I was left hanging overnight while naked.
It’s no use. Even if someone were around, why would they save me? My head hurts. I’m sure that’s a symptom of dehydration. Now that I’ve noticed it, the pain is throbbing, coming in waves. It feels like I have a hangover. My arms and legs are itchy. They’re so goddamn itchy, but I can’t scratch! I can’t move.
“Somebody! Somebody help! Help me!”
My voice is hoarse. Every shout makes me nauseous, light-headed. I’m so weak. It hurts to do anything. It hurts to not do anything. Why is this happening to me? Tears and snot are running down my face. But I can’t wipe them. Why? Why, why, why?
What was that?
“Hey! Are you alive? Help me!”
Someone came into view. It was … the smart infected. It’s wearing camouflage clothes and a motorcycle helmet. Anyone can wear that, but I know it’s the infected because of everything else. There’s a bow on its back, sandwiched between it and its backpack. There’s a quiver on its waist. It has a spear in its right hand and a metal bat in its left. It tilted its head to look up at me. I can’t see through its visor, but I’m sure its taunting me.
“You fucking bastard! I’ll kill you! I’ll fucking kill you!”
I’m sure it understands me. There’s no way it doesn’t! It put the metal bat on the ground and raised its spear. Is this it? It’s going to stab me? No, why would it go through the trouble of saving me if it was going to kill me? To torture me? To watch me despair?
“You fucking monster….”
The smart infected stabbed its spear beneath me. One of the infected stopped moving and fell over, dead. The other infected didn’t even look at it. They’re still trying to pull me down. The smart infected pulled its spear out before methodically stabbing the infected’s eyes, killing them in one hit. When all of them were dead, it put its spear down. Then it went to the tree trunk and untied a rope. With a swishing sound, I sank down to the ground, hitting the pile of dead bodies with my legs. The fall knocked the wind out of me. How smart was this infected? Why did it know how to suspend people? I tried moving, but my limbs didn’t listen.
What was it doing? The infected was watching me with a bow and arrow in its hands. Did it think I was going to attack? It slowly approached me before taking the spear that was an arm’s length away from me. It put the bow and arrow away. Dread filled my stomach as it raised its spear. It stabbed down, stabbing into my chest. This is it; I’m dead. It hurt, stinging. I thought it’d be a more heart-stopping pain. It was just a shallow injury. That’s definitely not enough to kill me—it barely broke my skin. The tip of the spear was soaked in infected blood though.
The infected crouched next to me. Then it rubbed the wound it just created. I screamed. I couldn’t help it. It scooped the blood off of its spear and slapped it against the wound, patting it in as if it were trying to plug it up. Then, it took off its gloves and opened its bag. Was that, hand sanitizer? It washed its hands before putting the sanitizer away. Then it took out a knife and something red and small like a skinned finger. It tapped my cheek with the blade of the knife and dangled the red thing over my face. What, what did it want me to do? Was it trying to feed me?