Eula drove the tractor like a master zombie herder. Sounding the horn, travelling along the road that marked the edge of the town, attracting hundreds of zombies to them.
She circled the target street several times, bringing more of the monsters out with each circuit until the numbers following and attempting to surround them genuinely caused grave concern.
Kevin had been at that level for about one hour already, this situation was not helping. He was having serious doubts about the entire notion of saving people now he was in the middle of it. Walking death, even though it was slow and shambling, only required one mistake, or having too many in front of the tractor to be able to plough through them. Eula and Kevin had talked about the concept of how many zombies was too many zombies for the tractor to handle. They failed to reach a number, but he suspected they had reached it.
On the fourth passing of the target road, Eula had clearly decided the road was clear enough to pick up people as the tractor turned onto it. Kevin was on the look out for people. He had counted twelve survivors in various houses along the road.
The first house with someone, nobody came out. Although the man was looking out the window with a face full of fear.
The next house a woman came running out with a suitcase and bat. She looked terrible, panicked but moving. She looked to be in her late twenties. Kevin put the trailer door down then jumped off to help her throw the suitcase on. She got up quickly on her own.
Kevin made a run to the next house. A teenage man came running out with a backpack. Eyes wide with adrenalin but with a huge grateful smile.
The next two survivor houses the people simply looked out the window, even when Kevin screamed at them to come out, they refused.
Zombies were beginning to appear on the road, both ends of the street were beginning to be blocked with them. Other zombies were appearing from the sides of houses as well.
The next house a man in his fifties appeared with a backpack on, he walked to the tractor and casually threw his gear on. The teenage man and woman assisted him up.
Kevin was feeling the stress, the zeds were coming, he had time for one more house though.
This time the woman came bolting out, she had a sheet that had gear bundled into it. Not pretty, but effective for the short run. She was in her mid twenties.
She launched herself up, Kevin as right behind her checking to see if anyone else was game enough to make the run. Then saw the man from earlier running out of his house. He was too far away, there were too many zombies between them. Yet he made a run for it anyway.
Kevin yelled at him to hurry, and he did.
The zombies seemed unsure which way to move, but it did not matter because the dozens of zombies in between closed the gap on the man until he was grabbed. He shook off the first grab, but the second, third and fourth ones brought him to a stop. He was pulled to the ground where every zed that was close by jumped onto him and began to feed on any body part they could get the teeth into.
The screams rang through Kevin’s ears and stuck a spike into his brain.
He was out of time, so he jumped onto the trailer, lifted the trailer door and bolted it shut with a good ten seconds to spare.
He looked at each of the new Zombie Tribe Members.
Two women, two men, all capable looking.
Kevin said, “We are not out yet, but we should be okay. Eula is taking us back to the farm. Until then, grab one spear each, if any of those fuckers needs their head spiked, do it.”
The newcomers took one corner each, Kevin stood at the back.
Eula had already put the foot down to escape the zombie roadblock. She powered through them as quickly as she could. So many bodies were going under the tractor and trailer that it made for a bumpy ride.
Eula drove the way they had come, but it wasn’t clear enough to drive through, tractor or not. The sheer scale of numbers made that pathway too risky. She turned the tractor North towards the bridge they had driven over only three days previous.
As they made progress along the road, Kevin watched the zombies following them the entire time. Large numbers of them simply shambled their way forward, uncaring about their slow progress, they simply slow marched towards the sound of the tractor.
The older man tapped the front cab with his spear to gain Eula’s attention and pointed down a side road, Eula turned down it.
It quickly left the town and they found themselves on a farm round. The man said, “Stop the tractor, I want to get into the cab with you.”
Before she stopped, they all did a check for zombies, as soon as they felt it was a safe move, she brought them to a stop, the old man climbed from the trailer to the cab. Eula opened the door, he got in and they started to move again.
They made it to the bridge using multiple small dirt roads. When they crossed the bridge, they needed to run over more zombies. Kevin took a look down the freeway to find it loaded up with hundreds of zeds. All of them turned toward the tractor noise and began their slow march chase after them.
After the bridge, the numbers dropped down quickly, so Eula slowed down to make the haphazard trailer ride safer.
The woman in her mid-twenties said, “What happened to your head?”
Kevin remembered his bleeding head as he said, while putting his hand to his face to realize his face was still bleeding, “Oh, I head butted the trailer when I jumped off a roof before we came to your road.”
“Are you okay?”
“I think so, it is just a flesh wound.”
“I’m Lilly.” She extended her hand for Kevin to shake, he obliged with his bloodied hand. She did not flinch her hand away.
“I’m John” said the teenage man.
“I am Kevin, the driver is Eula. I can’t explain to you how happy I am to meet you all.”
Carol said, “Somehow, I think we all think the same thing.”