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Howard's Story

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Part 1

It was a regular sunny day in California. Howard just came back to his house after a long day of work. As he enters his neighborhood, Gilbert waves at him, a short and stocky African-American man who works at the local garden store. He was watering his sunflowers and tulips neatly set up in his short, green lawn. Howard finally reaches his driveway and hits the button to pen his garage. He parks his silver SUV and closes the garage door. After he changes into his casual clothes, Howard sits down at his wooden dining room and table and has a warm bowl of clam chowder soup. As he is eating it. he hears multiple helicopters circling above his house and flying past it. He runs out to his back porch and hears a crackling voice from one of the helicopters.

Helicopter Pilot: All civilians that hear this message go straight to Los Angeles!

Howard is barely able to hear the voice and he runs out to his front yard. Gilbert motions him over and wants to speak with him. Since Howard doesn't know what is going on, he grabs his pistol and a kitchen knife. He also grabs an extra pistol just in case Gilbert needs one.

Gilbert: Hey, Howard. Do you know what's goin' on here?

Howard: No clue, but it doesn't seem good. Anyway, your gonna need this.

Howard hands Gilbert one of the pistols and they both step inside Gilbert's beige house for a quick chat.

Gilbert: We need to get my son from school.

Howard: I'm coming with you no matter what.

Gilbert: That's fine, but aren't you overreacting just a bit?

Howard: Not at all, why would a helicopter pilot warn us to head for Los Angeles?

Howard walks back to his house and opens the garage. He jumps into his silver SUV and follows behind Gilbert's navy blue van. As the two drive very close to each other, they notice many car wrecks and dead bodies scattered around the road. A few power lines and power line poles can be seen knocked down in the right lane.

Howard: This isn't good...

As the two men drive further down the road, they notice more abandoned cars and more significant damage. As they drive past a small neighborhood, a red car can be seen crashed into a house wall. They notice a woman in her 20's limping from behind the rubble. Howard uses his cell phone and quickly calls Gilbert who is directly in front of him.

Howard: Should we help the lady?

Gilbert We gotta get my son first.

The two man drive further past the neighborhood and reach the high school. They notice all the students are lined up behind the fence and Gilbert gets out of the car. He hollers over and his son run in their direction and opens the fence just enough so he can squeeze through. His son looks a bit sweaty and his small afro is somewhat fuzzy.

Gilbert: James, are you okay!?

Gilbert gives his tall and slender son a very big hug.

James: I'm just fine, dad. Today has been weird.

Gilbert: Look ,we can talk in the car son. We've gotta hurry to Los Angeles.

James: Howe come?

Gilbert: It's a long story...

Howard, Gilbert and James continue riding in the direction of Los Angeles and notice more damage, car wrecks and corpses lying throughout the road. A few people with pale skin begin walking toward the silver SUV and navy blue van.

Howard: What are they doing!?

Howard calls Gilbert once more. Gilbert is very sweaty and his forehead is shining like the sun. He is also very shaky and nervous.

Gilbert: Maybe this is what the pilot was talkin' about...

Part 2

The pale figures begin walking further toward the car and Howard begins feeling tense. He decides to lower down his car window and holler to the figures. As he opens the window though, all he hears is moans and can only make out the putrid scent of death. Howard then quickly reaches into his storage compartment right next to his seat and pulls out the pistol. He begins firing at the figures and notices that more keep emerging from behind vehicles and from the nearby neighborhood. After shooting down a few of the pale humanoid figures, Howard calls Gilbert and asks if he's alright.

Gilbert: Hey, Howard. I'm doing fine but I'm a bit worried...

In the middle of Gilbert's talk with Howard, the cell phone disconnects and begins beeping. He looks at his son in the passengers seat and pats his back. Gilbert notices that his son, James is frightened and his legs are shaking. Meanwhile back in Howard's silver SUV, he stomps on the gas peddle and manages to escape the encroaching figures walking toward him. After they are a mile away from the figures, Howard notices a police officer sitting in a cruiser. The cruiser reads "Los Angeles County" on the door. Before getting out of the car, Howard examines his surroundings and doesn't see any thing strange occurring. He gets out of his car and approaches the officer in the vehicle. The officer had a thick, brown mustache and short brown hair, his hat was lying on the passengers seat. The officer looks at Howard and opens his mouth in what appears to be shock. Gilbert then gets out of the car with James and they walk over to the police cruiser.

Gilbert: I don't know, Howard. That guy looks odd.

Howard: Nonsense, just knock on the window.

Gilbert slowly knocks on the cruiser's window and the officer looks. The officer is banging on the window and Gilbert notices a large bite mark on the other side of the officer's face.

Gilbert: Yeah, Howard...he's not okay.

Gilbert points to the large bite mark on the officer's face.

Howard: Oh God! That looks serious.

Gilbert: He's been bitten by somethin', but the prisoner looks like he escaped.

Gilbert only says this because he notices handcuffs in the back seat with a small streak of blood on it. Howard quickly opens the passenger seat door and shoots the man in the side of the head. On the other side of the cruiser, Gilbert and James open the door and drag the body out of the car. They find a Glock on the officer's belt and also grab the police officer's baton.

Howard: Why did you grab a baton?

Gilbert: You never know when it could be useful.

Howard, Gilbert and James get back in their vehicles and continue driving to Los Angeles.

Part 3

Howard and Gilbert continue driving toward the city and come across a hotel. Howard, Gilbert and even James look tired and exhausted.

Howard: Does it look safe?

Gilbert: Let's just look around and see if their is anything strange.

Howard hands Gilbert the Glock and Gilbert hangs James, Howard's pistol. On the hotel sign on the ground floor, bloody hand marks could be seen on the middle part of the sign.

Howard: Oh crap, that looks bad.

Gilbert: Look man, we can go in through the back.

Gilbert leads Howard and his son, James to the back of the four story hotel and come across a pool. They slowly open the back gate and notice a few blood puddles around the pool area. In the water, they see a submerged person. The person appears normal and looks somewhat overweight. The submerged person begins to stand and growls at the three survivors.

James: Oh man, dad. What's that!?

Gilbert is shocked after looking at the person.

Gilbert: Uh uh, this ain't happening.

Howard: What is it, Gilbert?

Gilbert: Nothing.

The person now looks a bit bloated and is struggling to the pool stairs. The strange monster gets out and walks very slowly toward Howard. Howard quickly whips out his pistol and fires at the monster's forehead.

Howard: Oh sh*t, what was that a...

Gilbert: Yeah it was one of those pale things.

Howard: Then this place definitely isn't safe.

The three survivors take a few more steps just to investigate the inside of the hotel. Before they open the door, they decided not to open it and notice five pale figures munching on a woman's body. Howard, Gilbert and James run out of the gate and decide to abandon Howard's silver SUV and ride in Gilbert's navy blue van.

Howard: It's low on gas anyway.

Gilbert decides to let Howard drive for a while so he can rest in the back. He begins to see a few vehicles parked in a national park and decides to check it out. It is early morning now and Howard pulls into the national park. The main offices and gift shops and cabins were surrounded by large, wooden walls and a sturdy black gate. Howard quickly jumps out of the vehicle and opens the gate holding his gun real close in case someone attacks. Nobody can be seen and Howard walks further down the dirt road to the gift shop. He quietly opens the door with a poster over the window and is uncomfortably greeted by an older man aiming at shotgun at Howard's stomach.

Old Man: I suggest you don't move.

Howard: Look I don't want any trouble, just some shelter.

Old Man: Too bad, we're full!

Howard: Please, sir. Two other people are in my van, one is a kid.

Old Man: Let me see them.

The old man walks outside the gift shop an looks at Gilbert's van, Gilbert and James get out.

Old Man: We'll I'll be...

Howard: I'm Howard and the other man is Gilbert. His son is James.

Old Man: Get in here! Your lucky we are surrounded by a wall.

Gilbert: And what's your name, sir?

Old Man: Oh sorry, the name is Horace, Horace Walton.

Howard: Pleasure to meet you, Mr. Walton.

Old Man: Please call me Horace.

Horace sets down his shotgun and gives Howard, Gilbert and James a quick tour. he shows them the food and drinks inside the large store and shows them the ice room. A generator can be seen through the back door's white curtain.

Horace: Our own power source, kind of nice right?

Howard: You've got quite a place here.

Horace: Thank you, we are planning on extending within the next few weeks. Maybe more walls and a cabin or so.

Horace takes the three survivors past the generator outside and shows them two tents, one navy blue and tan, the other was gray and green. A younger man and woman walk out from the tents.

Horace: This is my daughter, Stephanie and her husband Richard.

The couple appeared to be in their early 30's compared to the older man with a grey beard and mid-length hair. Horace begins to return outside and asks Gilbert to move his vehicle further behind the gift shop where a few smaller cars were parked perfectly.

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