Journals of the Fall, pt. 6

Record #147-56-91

Notes From the Body of Unidentified Wanderer

50th Day after the Fall (estimated)

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Day 1 - Kicked out of the group today. Fat lot of good it’ll do them to lose me. I was the only one holding them together. Mark my words, they’ll be at each other’s throats within a week, whether they turn or not.

Day 2 - Didn’t make as good time as I’d hoped. Held up by the search for water. Never considered that much before all hell broke loose. Can’t believe how thirsty I get.

Found a clean stream or spring or something. Hope it was clean anyway. Didn’t see any bodies near it, human or otherwise. Was tempted to stay a while, but I’ve got to keep moving.

Day 3 - Running low on water again. Should’ve stayed longer at that stream I found yesterday.

Day 4 - Found a pond today. It was a little murky but it smelled okay, tasted fine.

I can’t see what’s left of the city anymore.

Day 5 - A huge relief today. I came across an abandoned camp. There was some stale food there; I’ll have to use that first. What I had on me is running a bit low, but it’ll last longer than this stuff will.

The real prize was a canteen, half full. I’ll still have to find water regularly, but at least I can bring some with me now.

There’s a bunch of other gear too, but most of it will just wear me down. Got a couple of blades though. That’ll be useful.

Day 6 - Just when you think you’re starting to get the hang of survival, you realize it’s getting awfully hot and you’re not equipped to keep the sun off. I’d give half my water for some sun screen, or a hat with a brim.

Day 7 - There are buildings up ahead. I’m torn. They’re right in my path, and if I push on, not only can I make better time, but I might be able to pick up things I desperately need.

Or, I might be surrounded and torn to pieces.

Day 11 - Let this lapse for a few days. Been on the run. Figured it’d be the dead that would get me if I got too close to town. I didn’t even consider the living.

The damn town’s a fortress, or near enough. Someone’s got some people organized, and they sure aren’t looking for new friends. They’ve got guards at every watering hole I’ve hunted down. Have no choice now, have to

- The travelogue ends here. The pages were splashed with blood. The body showed signs of having been run down by a vehicle. J.T.

Journals of the Fall, pt. 5

Record #168-13-23

Transcript from The Bertrand Jamison Podcast

45th Day after the Fall (estimated)

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“Good morning, everyone. All of you who are left, anyway. I can’t believe I still get comments on this, but I swear to you all, I will keep recording and publishing as long as the power and my connection holds out.

If you hear this show, I can’t stress enough how important it is to comment. This living hell we’re experiencing is hard enough to bear without thinking we’re alone. Even if you’re with a group, it’s critical to embrace the idea of community. Let your voice be heard. You’re not alone. I’m here. Others are here. Let us hear from you.

I have to spend some time thanking those of you who commented yesterday. Davis from Syracuse is holed up in his local police precinct with a band of 7 other survivors. It sounds like their situation is pretty grim. A migrating—is it migrating? Do the dead migrate? I’m going to call it migrating—anyway, a migrating horde of the dead moved into the area a few days ago and haven’t cleared the area yet.

Seana in Mississauga is reporting much more typical behavior from the dead. The numbers in her area are thinning, a relief for sure; she tells us that the greater Toronto area started out incredibly thick with them, but she’s hopeful now that maybe they’re gradually dispersing. It doesn’t sound good for anyone who was actually in the city around the time of the Fall though. If you’re in Toronto itself, or have first-hand knowledge of any survivors there, please do let us know.

Ahmed in Los Angeles successfully fought off three of the dead last night. Nobody in his shelter was injured, thankfully, and his family is still safe. This is the third time we’ve heard from Ahmed. I’m glad to hear from you again. Please keep us up to date on events in the city of … well, in the city.

Jamal in New York City—Jamal, you have my sincerest admiration for staying safe this long there—is reporting increased raider activity. There are not one, but two large gangs of motorcycle riders basically pillaging the city, raiding smaller safe-houses and looting food. He warns others in the area to be careful; he has seen members of both groups kill members of the other group, and innocents as well. It’s not all bad news though; they make a point of destroying any of the dead that they find.

And finally, I have some sad news. Daryl from the Seattle outskirts stopped commenting five days ago, after reporting increasing numbers of dead in the area. Another commenter in the area reported a sizable holdout was breached about that same time. Daryl, if you’re still out there, our thoughts are with you.

That’s it for today; be safe out there, everyone. Spread the word as far and fast as you can."

- The show was broadcast over the Internet until the North American power grid collapsed. Jamison’s enclave appears to still survive. J.T.


Journals of the Fall, pt. 4

Record #115-22-00
Transcript from Audio
42nd Day after the Fall (estimated)

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[muffled thumping and fumbling]

“Uh, hey. Whoever hears this—if anyone hears—”

“Seriously, Neal? Nobody’s ever going to find this, and if they do, they’ll never play it.”

[additional fumbling and bumping as though someone is trying to turn the recording device off]

“Hey, knock it off! This is important, for like posterity.”

“They won’t have the power to play it! Oh for—fine, whatever. Knock yourself out.”

[footsteps recede, the original speaker (Neal, presumably) clears his throat several times]

“Sorry. If anyone hears this, this is a record of what life is like now. We’ve been lucky—”

[sounds of derisive snorting in the background, sounds like several individuals, and at least one short laugh]

“Luckier than some, at least. We started out in Acresville. That’s probably why we’re still alive. We tried to get to some of the bigger cities around the area, but by the time we did, they had already fallen. The dead—”

[background has gone quiet, Neal clears his throat again]

“The dead … there are just so many of them. Everyone went to the cities, everyone who wasn’t there already. I … I don’t know how long they lasted, but man. I, um. I don’t think they even lasted a day. There’s too many of them. So many.”

[bumping sounds and a click as the recording time changes]

“Hey, this is April. Neal said the rest of us should try this, and—well, I guess it can’t hurt.”

[silence broken by unintelligible conversation in the background, the sound of footsteps]

“The others think it’s stupid, and it kind of is I guess. I don’t really think anyone will ever get to hear this. We’re on the road again. The water stopped working in the last place we stayed. Power’s gone too. We have a few spare batteries, but this recorder’s the only thing we’ve got that uses this kind, I think. If it were up to me, I’d still save it for something more useful.”

[a harsh whisper in the distance can’t be made out; the recording stops again, then restarts; April’s voice is clearly shaken, maybe in shock]

“Oh god, did I draw them with this damned thing? Jason’s gone, he’s just gone. He was there, then he was gone. Nobody else bitten. Adam had to—he had to—Jason’s gone.”

[recording stops, then starts again, Neal speaking]

“We haven’t done this in a while. April vanished last night. Nobody’s seen her; we have to keep moving. When we left Acresville, there were ten of us. There are only four left now. We’re doing okay for food I guess. It’s the water that’s going to kill us. We found a pond yesterday, but one of those things was in it. Adam killed it, but nobody could stomach drinking the water. We don’t think it was safe to drink. Is any stream or lake safe to drink? Or will it make you into one of them?”

[Neal’s voice sounds more dry by the minute]

“We’ve only got a few days of water left. If we don’t find more soon … beware of ponds.”

- Recording date estimated from artifacts associated with the recording medium as discovered. Fate of those recorded remains unknown. J.T.

Journals of the Fall, pt. 3

12th Day after the Fall

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I think I’m going to be sick.

I’ve felt this way all day, since I saw the other trucks. Or one of them anyway.

I wasn’t supposed to see, and if any of the guards ever reads this, I’m dead, but I don’t think I care anymore.

They tried to be careful, parked the one truck out of sight of all the others. They had screens up to keep us from seeing, but one of the corners was torn and I saw enough.

They had those things in there! I saw my neighbor. The one who’d disappeared. What was left of her anyway. They dragged her—it—out of the truck. Then made it walk off in chains and a muzzle.

I thought they were supposed to be saving us? Why are they bringing them in? What could

- The journal ends here. J.T.

Record #127-08-03

Blog of Joe Nesmith

35th Day after the Fall

To any who is able to read this, you are not alone.

I write this not just because I’m still out here and posting, but because I can tell from my web stats that despite all the odds, there are still people out there with Internet access. A surprising number, in fact.

I’m preaching to the choir, I know, but get to social media as soon as you possibly can. The main networks aren’t what they were just over a month ago, obviously, but they’ve never been more important.

Before you go there though, let me give you some life-saving advice that has kept me going the past few weeks.

  1. Get with a group of people you trust. Do not hook up with strangers.
  2. Stay away from cities. Even small towns are death traps now. I know they’re tempting with their abandoned stores and supplies, but that’s where the people were before. It’s where the dead are now.
  3. Stay away from hospitals. Even before, they were the best place to go to get sick. Now, they’re worse than cities.
  4. Try to find some remnant of civilization. This is where social media comes in. Right now, everyone’s panicked and terrified, but some of us are trying to build something. Try to get in touch with people near you. There is strength in numbers.
  5. Conserve your battery life! Unfortunately, network centers are gradually shutting off as power systems fail. There’s nothing we can do about that. We can do something about conserving our own power.

That’s all for now. Spread the word. Organize.

- This is the last posted entry. Advice given was questionable. Avoid strangers, avoid cities, find civilization? Even after the fall, the so-called “survival” gurus were iffy at best. J.T.

Journals of the Fall, pt. 2

Today brings several more days of journals, and in addition, the beginning of JuNoWriMo 2013. This means way more updates and longer stories each day as I once again try to reach the goal of 50,000 words in one month. Wish me luck!

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8th Day after the Fall

People are getting kind of cranky today. We spent the whole day crammed in the truck, only a couple of breaks to stretch and relieve ourselves, and that was maybe 5 minutes at best.

Toward the end of the day, someone really freaked out, started screaming and wouldn’t stop. Must’ve gone on for fifteen minutes before they pulled the truck over and let us out. I’m not sure what happened to the guy. I am sure I don’t really want to think about it too hard.

Phil said he saw them lead him out into the woods, but didn’t see him return. I just know the rest of the trip was kind of quiet. It was a relief after the sounds from yesterday.

We haven’t heard any of them today. Small mercy, I guess.

9th Day after the Fall

Another day just spent traveling. It’s taking a toll. We’re packed in pretty tight to the truck, can’t move much, and we’re going over bad roads for at least twelve hours.

Tempers are starting to get pretty bad. A few fights have broken out. They stopped the trucks again off schedule. This time I saw a couple of people led away. I recognized a neighbor this time. He’d been in my truck. He definitely didn’t get back in when we left.

10th Day after the Fall

If we don’t get where we’re going soon, I’m going to kill someone, I swear. I hurt from head to toe, just from standing in this moving, bumping, damned truck all day, being pushed shoved all the time.

During the first break today, someone complained to the soldiers. She couldn’t take it anymore, I guess. Can’t really say I blame her. She didn’t take it too well when they refused to extend the breaks. Went into hysterics. I don’t know what happened to her. I haven’t seen her. Maybe she’s on one of the other trucks now.

11th Day after the Fall

We arrived today. None too soon. And now I know why we hadn’t been hearing them. They’re all here. Must be hundreds, thousands maybe.

The military have a huge compound all blocked off with walls and fences. They had to shoot a way clear for us to get through the gates, and then they just drove the trucks right over the bodies. Maybe that’s why we haven’t gotten much to eat. I’d have lost it over that sound, over how it felt. I’m going in for processing soon. I’ll write more when that’s over with, if I have a chance.

Journals of the Fall, pt. 1

Journals of the Fall is a  new series of no planned particular length. Little Things really put me in more of a zombie mood and this should give me a wonderful excuse to explore some ideas I have about them in more detail. This will probably become the basis of my JuNoWriMo project as well.

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Year 56 Post-Fall

West Huron Reclamation Base

For General Distribution

The following records include collected diaries and journals of the time immediately following the Fall. These include transcriptions of audio recordings and videos posted to the remnants of the global Internet, which remained accessible for a brief time.

It is our hope in collecting these records that light may be shed on the troubling events that we have experienced in the decades since the Fall. Records will be added to this collection as they are created or discovered.

Record #103-05-15

Journal of Terence Louis Tully

7th Day after the Fall

It’s been a few days since all the crazy started. I think it’s only been a few days. Hanover’s a pretty tiny place, it took a while to reach us. Of course I’d read all about the dead rising online, but I thought it was just another meme going around. It wasn’t the first time someone’d hacked a traffic sign to warn people about zombies, y’know? Now I wish that was what was really going on.

It was the ‘net that told us things were serious. When it went down, we thought it was just the usual crap from our cable company again, but when we called to complain, there was no answer. Cable was out too. It took us longer to realize that though.

The next day there was nothing. No TV, no internet, no radio, nothing at all until the army rolled into town. They were going to help us, they said. They gathered everyone up into trucks and started just hauling us off. Most of us, anyway. They were giving us some sort of test, shining lights in our eyes. Most went into the trucks. A few they sent off somewhere else. I haven’t seen any of them since.

It was while we were on the trucks that I first heard them.

Sorry if my writing’s getting too hard to read here. I don’t like to remember those sounds. The guys who used to make those zombie movies had it all wrong, or maybe it’s just not the kind of sound you can get quite right out of a TV. I’ve started writing all this down to try and take my mind off it.

They haven’t told us where we’re going yet. I’m pretty sure they don’t plan to, either.