Post-Apocalypse World

2097 Words
As if everything is in slow motion. Heavily panting, dragging himself out desperately on the ray of light at the end of the tunnel. He turned deaf to the continuous horrendous screams of help and dying cries of those behind him. ‘How did this all happen?!’ he thought as he kept running and running. The screams seem to be getting closer behind. ‘Just a bit more!’ He refused to turn to his back and just focused on the light ahead. “ACKKK! PLEASE! HELP ME!!” A hand touches the ends of his trouser, and he finds himself turning back slowly. It was a man, with blood all over his face.  Shaking his head, though he was trembling he still reached for the man’s despite his doubts and worries but even before they made contact, the lying man was dragged back to the darkness and the man’s piercing screams made him fall to his back. Holding back his overwhelming fear against the loud munching sound, he starts crawling the tiled floor and starts running once again. He reached the light at last. It was perfect sunny weather outside but it’s not like anyone cares. Not far from the entrance where people were covered in blood, looking exhausted or partially crazy. Trembling, shaking and alertness, they are all drenched in an emotion called fear. *RINGGGGG Siren started ringing loudly. Not even done with catching his breath, the door he just exited closed down. Metal bars fall at the door, though some people are still inside shouting for a wait, the metal bar still closes down. Trapping people inside. A window pops up in the air like a hologram. [00:00:00] [Times Up!] As if in cue the screams behind the metal bars start resonating, like a firework background for the next level. [CONGRATULATIONS! YOU’VE PASSED LEVEL 1!] Everyone was speechless and soon more terrifying news descended on them. [PREPARING LEVEL 2…] He looked at the screen as if his surroundings turned mute.  ‘How did I end up here? All I want is for my sister to live…’ His eyes trembled at the hopelessness he felt. **** A week earlier. “Oy Lucas! Stop lazing around and get to work!” A fat man covered in charcoal and grease irritatedly called on a skinny man with shaggy curly hair. “Yes, coming.” Dusting off the crumbs of bread in his hand and drinking the remaining water in his cup before putting it aside. He brushes his unruly hair up and puts on his construction hat. The lights are unstable on tunnel-like streets with many like him eating like beggars on their own corner. Lucas kept his head down and gave way to anyone who walked against his way. He’ll say sorry to each person he will bump shoulders with or say excuse me to anyone he will disrupt. “LUCAS!! Come here fast! You little t**t. Can’t you move faster?!” Lucas hurriedly walked past the crowd and positioned his helmet after exiting the tunnel. The sunlight hurt his eyes but still made attempts to look at the 30 meter concrete wall standing erect. “BLOODY HELL LUCAS! WHAT ARE YOU DWINDLING ABOUT?” The fat man angrily calls from a distance. Lucas ran towards the fat man “I’m sorry sir.” “Are you really a retard?!” The fat man has a name tag. He is called Allen and unfortunately Lucas manager. *Thump The fat man slapped his head multiple times and he took it all without complaint. Afterwards, he repositioned his head gear and climbed to the woods, ropes and  chains elevator. “PULL!” Allen signals to lift the elevator. The people from the other side relay the command and the person inside the control area pushes the button and the lift starts ascending. Lucas held his breath and shakily grabbed the lifts’ waist level railings. “Pussy.” Allen scorned him and the other three men in the lift laughed together with him. Minutes later, they reached the top of the 30 meter high wall. The ride to the top was hell for Lucas but the view on top of the wall is amazing. With the sun on the verge rising is a sight to behold. “Hey, p***y! Stop staring and start working.” He bow and apologize to Allen and scurry away to pick some equipment.  “Hey, Lucas.” Another worker like him squat beside him and pretend to organize stuff. “Hi Donald.” Lucas greets back with a little smile. He is the only person who doesn’t look down on him so it relieves him to see Donald working on the same shift as him. “Haaa. the sunrise sure is something.” Sounded like daydreaming, Donald gaze longingly at the bright half light rising. “... I wonder what the past world was like. You know, before the apocalypse.” Donald exhaled his thoughts. It made Lucas stop organizing his things at the mention of the world apocalypse. They are living in a post-apocalypse world now. It’s been twenty years since hell has been unleashed to the earth. “You saw the old world right? What is it like?” Donald whispered to Lucas. “You were born before the apocalypse.” Lucas answered as he got his things, and started equipping himself. Strapping himself and hanging the tools on his waist. “Dude, I was only four years old at that time. What could I remember? Besides, my parents got inside the Walls’ the moment it was built...Ah!... I am sorry pal, I don’t mean it.” Seeing Lucas freeze Donald knows he hit a sore part of Lucas.  ‘Walls’ were built to shelter humans. The walls they are standing right now are the borderline of the safe zone and the … still unclaimed lands.   “It’s okay pal. . . the, the previous world was not perfect nor a paradise but at least everyone is free...” Lucas answers and gazes beyond the borders now that the sun is slightly up, the view of the beyond is clearer. There was nothing but piles of rocks and destroyed houses, buildings and roads. For the past twenty years, the beyond walls are slowly returning to ashes or being gobbled up by nature, as overgrown grass and untrimmed plants and trees are growing larger and larger. “Free? How?” Donald can’t picture the image Lucas is seeing. “People can travel without any worry. Well, except money and ID. You’ll need those when you travel.” Lucas explains as they walk to their spot. “What about your passport? Mother said something about countries and passports.” Lucas smiled at the naivety of a 24 year old man. There are schools established inside the walls but higher education is only for rich people, so much for people like Donald and Lucas. Education in the post apocalypse world is just unattainable. Hooking their safety gear on the metal pipe and pulling to test. Lucas double checked Donald’s equipment before they rappel down to the other side of the wall. “How come you are scared of lifts but do okay in rappelling?” Donald asked. Lucas looked calm for someone who claims to be afraid of heights.  “As long as I can’t see the ground. I am okay.” Lucas answered as he started getting his things out of his waist tool box.  He had a gun-like item that shoots cements and he will flatten it using his cement brush. “Will you tell me more about the old world?” Donald said and smiled at Lucas. “Well, there is this famous restaurant I love and I used to go to when I was a kid and it reminds me of it when I see you?”  “Why? What is it? Was it delicious?!” Donald excitedly asked, making the wet cement dripping down.  “Every kid loves that restaurant. You’ll love it.” a small smile appeared on Lucas' face. “What is it?!” Donald nudges Lucas. The rope holding them swings a little. “WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! GET BACK TO WORK!” Allen on top of the walls shouted at them.  Donald parted with Lucas immediately and made a mocking face as soon as Allen was out of sight. Lucas chuckled a little and whispered to Donald. “It’s called Mcdonalds.” Donald makes a questioning face to him, almost saying ‘Are you serious?’ *DIIIING! DIIIING! Loud sounds of the bell ringing made everyone halt and look at the incoming vehicles coming from outside the wall. “Ah, the Renaissance is back. Let’s go see what they’ve brought back.” Donald excitedly pulls the reins up and he ascends up. The Renaissance, they are a group of people, hired by the wall leaders, to venture out the walls. They are incharge of luring out anything but humans near the walls, so the walls can expand.  “Let’s go, Lucas. It’s not everyday you can see mutants.” Lucas hears the gates of the walls opening up and all other workers are also pulling their reins up. Donald drags Lucas to the lift, it’s a little bit unstable with people crowding in and hurrying to get down. “Come here.” All smiles, Donald saves space for Lucas among the crowd. “Tsk. These youngsters, why get so excited seeing monsters. I bet they won’t be excited if they become the monster’s meall.” An old man, maybe in his 50s, commented and moved out of the way. That is understandable since, the only people who will get excited in seeing mutants are either those who haven’t seen the horrors of the apocalypse like Donald and the rest of crowds who are cheering and anticipating as the truck and other heavy duty vehicles park in front or. . . “What did they bring this time?” One of the men sneaked a peek at the heavily chained truck. Military uniformed covered in blood and dirt were seen going out the vehicles. The other truck didn’t stop and continued to pave way in the crowd. ‘That must be the vehicle for the bodies.’ Lucas thought.  Renaissance never came back without any casualty or injuries. That’s how dangerous beyond the walls. *Thud A woman in tight black military pants and tank top with a gun and knives hanging over her waist went down. “Open up!” She commanded. The crowd started whispering to each other. “Huh they are unloading the monster here?” Donald was puzzled. The truck’s storage back opened up and soldiers went up inside with metal hooks and chains. It sounds like they hook something and when the soldier appears in light again he gestures for a pull. A ramp has been set up also. Another car pulls a huge crate outside the truck. “Citizens of the walls! Can anyone guess what is inside?” The commanding woman asked the crowd. Nobody answered right away but Donald raised his hand. “You young man, what do you think this is?” “A monster? A dead one?”  Donald answered looking innocently. Lucas looked at the crate intently, despite no loud banging Lucas can’t help but disagree. “Wrong.” said the woman. She went for her pocket and showed a remote. She briefly points it to crate and push a button. The crate opened in all directions and as soon as it opened something swift went running towards the woman. *GRRRRRRR “AHHHHH!” Someone in the crowd shouted and backed away. Everyone panicked and backed away including Lucas. A half decayed body is violently reaching and trying to bite the woman in her face. If not for the metal chain in its neck and connecting the pole standing inside the opened crate. Lucas trembling eyes stares at the moving dead body. In the pre-apocalypse world it is called ‘Zombies’ in the films. They are humans that died and come back to life with one purpose and that is to eat human flesh. In the post-apocalypse world, they are called ‘Undead or Mutants.’ In this era, there are two types of people who get excited seeing this types of things First are those people who haven't experienced the horrors of it and second ones are the psychos. Lucas felt the shiver in his spine seeing the smiling expression of the woman. No worrisome nor alertness. Just pure amusement.
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