(1x03: Philly Feast)
When in Philly, Feast Like the Phillies Do
The quiet in which they were traveling in was broken when Cassandra could not longer hold her worried tongue. "Why are we going this way? Philly's a dead zone." She had made her displeasure clear throughout the past two days, mumbling, grumbling, and shifting nervously. It was suspicious and alarming and earlier this morning she had told Garnett exactly that.
"We're just cutting through the outskirts." Ariel mumbled from between her and Murphy. The map was a mess, the marker in her mouth bouncing as she tried to focus on getting them a quicker or more bountiful route.
"Hopefully we can scavenge something without going too deep into the city." Garnett reassured from the front seat
"If we find a working radio, we can try to contact that Z guy again."
Warren's hopefulness was shut down by Ariel. "If he's still alive, that is." After the past few hiccups in the plans the blonde was constantly trying to plan two more back up routs and it was clearly taking a toll on her mood.
Some people in the group;however, just couldn't be put down today.
Murphy leant out the and basked in the sunshine. "Philadelphia." He observed the wasteland they traveled through, eyes halting momentarily on a small group of zombies digging into human carcass. "Ah, the city of brotherly love!" He sighed.
"Lovely." Ariel's face scrunched up disgust.
"Is that what I think it is?" Warren suddenly spoke up.
The truck stopped and Garnett was quick to jump out, giving Cassandra and Ariel a view of an old rusting bell tied to the flatbed of a truck. It's prominent crack catching their attention. Doc and Warren followed Garnett, stretching their legs outside the truck.
"Is that really the Liberty Bell?"
"Proclaim liberty throughout all the land and unto all the inhabitants thereof." Garnett recited, close enough to inspect it. "Yeah, that's it."
"Damn! Three years of zombie apocalypse, you think you've seen everything." Doc was in awe.
"Why's it here?" Ariel leant over Murphy and stuck her head out to see. Funnily enough through all the road trips her family had taken, nearly none involved any patriotically historical stops. Like everyone else they just kind of assumed it would always be there the next time around.
Warren could only shrug. "Well when everything went bad, they probably tried to save a little history."
"Especially after the Louvre was burnt to a shell." Ariel scoffed.
Banks locked up their gold, museums vaulted their works, and the rich retreated to fortified skyscrapers with their riches.
All the while the world was being bitten off in percentages per day.
"Well they should've known the only thing you can save is yourself." Murphy voiced her own thought loudly into her ear. Still sketchy from his past encounters, he eyed the zombies still feasting down the road, the longer they were stationary the more he became agitated. "Let's go!" He hollered. His nanny slapped him upside the head and made him scoot over so she could get out. With only mild bickering, she jumped from the truck and rubbed her ringing ear.
Warren and Garnett thought aloud about salvaging the truck for themselves while Doc and Ariel looked over the bell. Untreated after the past few years it was beginning to oxidize. Knowing her hand would probably smell like pennies for a while Ariel choose to risk it and gently run her hand over the much admired piece of American history. Tracing the crack with her fingers she couldn't help but scratch at the fairly new red spray paint on it.
"God bless the human race." Doc shook his head. "99% of them dead, but there's still one jackass alive with a spray can."
"One that's not far away." She mumbled. Rubbing the congealed paint off her fingertips she knew it couldn't be more than twenty minutes old. After killing the walker inside, and jump starting the engine, the group split into two trucks if just for a few minutes. The guy they had seen being a mid day meal for a few stray Zs apparently had company. Hoping to dodge the crashing car coming towards them, Warren turned sharply, the bell's weathered straps unable to keep it stationary with the force of the stop. Clanging and banging it's way through the street and the zombies on it the groups watched in amazement as it tore the legs off one walker, leaving them swaying till the knocked themselves over.
The axle broke, and more Zs drawn to them by the sound, the survivors were forced to flee out of the preferred path once more.
"Enjoy." Warren sighed once the grumbling of stomachs could no longer be ignored. "That's the last of the food."
Food! Ha! The single twinkie each member held seemed to mock them. Knowing very well that this might be their last meal for days some members of the group cherished the stale cake while others, meaning Murphy, stuffed it into their mouth without too much thought. With his own food gone, Murphy licked the wrapped desperately for any crumbs before he looked around at the others still nibbling.
"God, I'm so hungry my big guts are eating my little guts." He turned to 10K on his other side admiring the twinkie he had just bit into to. "You gonna eat all of that?" He reached for it, causing 10K to stuff it into his mouth the same way Murphy previously had. "Selfish little bastard."
Knowing he wouldn't shut up and having spent years splitting food with Carly, Ariel tore her own pathetic twinkie in half and held it up to the grumbling child.
"Here you spoiled -" Murphy wretched the pastry from her hand and had shoved the twinkie in his mouth before she could even finish. A muffled word that may or may not have been thanks, though it probably wasn't, barley escaped the twinkie stuffed hole.
"You're welcome." She grumbled back at him. Leaning back against the grill of the car, she closed her eyes and listened for the plan. Around her Cassandra snuck her own twinkie into her bag, Murphy was being glared at by a disapproving Doc, and 10K glanced down at the blonde beside him.
Garnette finished checking their supplies and joined them at the front. "We need to split up and look for food and water."
"Oh, if we can find a two way radio or even like a satellite dish, I can trying contact that Citizen Z guy." Addy seemed eager to volunteer.
"That's good." Garnett approved. "Okay, you and Mack do that. And the rest of us will look for food. Doc, you take 10K. Warren and I will take Murphy."
"And them?" Warren nodded to the two yet to be assigned. Cassandra and Ariel had kept their distance, tension still high between them after the incident on the roof. The memory of sunrise this morning of which Ariel confiding in him and Warren her suspicions of the other girl and suggestion not to trust her still weighed heavily in his mind. There was the girl they had been traveling with days longer, and the girl who they had just been introduced to. Needless to say Garnett was torn between needing to take it seriously and wanting to chalk it up to the group just starting to find their feet. He could only pray for now that things would settle. They could all have group therapy and a meet and greet when they weren't starving.
"Actually..." Garnett paused in though. "You two go with them." He pointing at Doc and the kid. The two girls glanced at each other before shuffling along, clearly not pleased with the assignment. "Stay close. Meet back here in an hour. Let's go." He ordered. As the three groups went they're separate ways, Warren quietly stopped her partner and nodded towards Ariel and Cassandra.
"Are you sure you wanna do that? Seemed like they were gonna get just yesterday."
"Yeah? Well, like it or not they need to get over it." He shrugged. He wasn't prepared for in group fighting, not in one as small as theirs and sure as hell not this soon.
"And Cassandra? Are we just gonna get over that too?" She raised a sculpted brow.
"Till we have food...yeah."
"Hey, kid." Doc stopped them in a large alleyway. "Give me a hand with this, will ya?"
"I don't know why we stopped here in Philly." Ariel rolled her eyes hearing Cassandra's whine again. "We should've kept going."
"Going?! Going where?! We're out of food, we've got a quarter tank of gas, our ammo is a third of what it was when we left the camp, and ever time I make a plan someone does something to screw it up!"
"Hey. Hey now!" Doc intervened from atop the dumpster. He held his hand out defensively, trying to calm the practically circling girls as if they were dogs about to fight. "Let's just take a moment to relax, chill, just-" Doc nodded gently, slowly spreading his hands apart to suggest they separate. Taking his advice they kind of wandered away to the two separate sides of the alley way, each girl looking out for anything coming.
With that crisis averted he turned his attention back to the satellite. "We need to find a way to communicate with that Citizen dude. And I think Addy can do something with this dish. Who knows, maybe we'll get lucky and pick up porn." He grinned towards 10K.
"Never seen porn." His trivial response caused a bit of a small uproar.
"You've never seen porn?!"
With three sets of wde eyes on him he could only shake his head. "Before my time."
"Bef-Before what time?!" Ariel scoffed. "Cave paintings?!"
Slightly blushing he could only ask "Is it good?"
The responses we're immediate.
"Uh? Yeah!" Doc seemed outraged while Cassandra seemed apathetic with a shrug.
"Depends on the kind." Ariel thought aloud.
He turned towards the blonde confused. "There are different kinds?"
His reaction was priceless and Ariel couldn't help but laugh a deep belly laughter, turning away and trying to calm herself. Her response made the younger man flush red and turn back to holding the dish. The red on his face and ears furthering a suspicion Doc had.
Doc began shouting directions loudly, the creaking of the metal dish being eased off and Ariel shouting at them to be careful, left little of the chase happening behind them audible.
It wasn't until Ariel glanced behind her to find Cassandra gone that she knew something was up.
Not having that high of an opinion of her, she had assumed the girl was up to no good. Yet rather than draw the guys away from getting that much needed satellite, Ariel choose to check it out for herself. Pulling her gun just in case she followed quietly down the alley, following the flash of shadow she saw round the corner. Running towards the continuing sound of footsteps just out of sight, she cam crashing into the wall when she took cover at the sound of rapid gunshots being fired.
Low to the ground and aiming her weapon she found two men mowing down Zs left and right. The long haired blond on the right looking vaguely familiar. It was the shifting movement of a crouched figure that drew Ariel attention. Cassandra was hiding behind the dumpster, seemingly scared out of her mind.
Clutching her shoulder to silently get her attention, Ariel ducked from yet another of Cassandra's swings. Barley managing to grab the girls wrist, Aiel narrowed her eyes. "You do that one more time and I'm kicking your ass." She didn't wait for a response, dragging her by that arm into a smaller hallway alley and circling back around towards the others.
"What the hell way that?" She let go of Cassandra's arm with a slight push.
"No!" Ariel hissed through gritted teeth. "What was that? Who were they? Why didn't you yell for help?"
"I had it covered!"
"You were weaponless trapped behind a dumpster by two guys with machine guns. If they didn't get you the zombies about to swarm from the sound sure as hell would have. And another thing!" She stopped to yelled at the stomping off Cassandra. "Next time think before you act! They could have come back to kill us or take us or-"
"They didn't want you!"
"You don't know that!" The blond tore at her hair in frustration.
"Yes! I do!" Cassandra screamed back hoarsely as if trying to hold back tears. Continuing to pick up the pace and separate herself from the other girl, Cassandra's thought ran a thousand miles a minute. She didn't know what to do. Tell them? Run? Tell them? What if AJ told them?
Said girl was currently jogging to catch up with her, shouting at her to explain herself. But Cassandra continued to ignore her, rejoining 10K and Doc and their new satellite dish and praying Ariel would just drop it.
"Where'd you two run off to?" Doc questioned.
"I thought I saw something. We went to check it out." Cassandra shut her up.
"What? No!" Ariel's face scrunched up at the audacity to try and make her lie.
"No?" Doc questioned. Both he and 10k raised their brows looking back at the out of breath girls who had vanished for a good five minutes.
"No. She...She..." Seeing the begging look on the darker girls face, Ariel could only bite her lip and turn around in frustration. She didn't didn't know why she did it, it was stupid, and stupid got you killed in this world, but she stormed pass Doc and 10K with a huff, planning to take it up with Garnett as soon as she saw him.
It wouldn't be long.
And she wouldn't have to tell him.
Having stormed ahead of the other three, Ariel was the first to notice something off about the rest of the converged survives.
"Hey, is everything okay?" She noticed someone seemed missing.
"It's about time!" Murphy groaned.
"What's wrong? Where's Addy?" Doc also clearly noticed the lack of the red head's presence.
"No." Mack's words were dark, threatening. "Taken alive." He advanced towards them, stopping in front of Ariel briefly before her look of confusion and challenging brow raise made him move on.
"By humans." Mack didn't look at Doc or the others, continuing to corner Cassandra against the truck.
With Cassandra pinned between Mack's unwavering glares and the truck, surrounded by the rest of the shocked group, Mack's accusation was a nail in the shutting coffin. "We thought you might know."
"Me? Why would I know?"
Mack played a video on an ipad tablet that came from god knows where. "You recognize these guys?"
"No. Why would I?"
Warren cozied up to her on her other side, further intimidating the girl and reminding her she was outnumbered. "Creep on the left was one of those two bikers back in Jersey. With your friend Travis."
"Scruffy?" Their navigator mildly perked up.
"I told you, I didn't know that guy. And I don't know them either." Cassandra tightened her jaw and tried to avoid eye contact.
Having had enough, Ariel lurched forward and grabbed the tablet. Playing it from the beginning it took her only seconds to yell at the terrified girl. "She's lying! These guys chased her down the alley ten minutes ago. You told me they wanted you! Did you plan this?!"
It was the straw that broke the camels back. With a cold fury none of them had seen before Mack pulled his gun and pressed it to Cassandra's temple. "You are gonna start telling me the truth right now or I am going to start blowing holes in you until you do."
"Mack!" They called for him to relax.
The desperate man tightened his grip on Cassandra's throat. With a thud, her body was pressed harder into the truck, reminding her of her defenseless position. "Do you understand me?!"
Things were spinning out of control. Garnett stepped up between the two, prying Mack's fingers off Cassandra's neck. Ariel had indeed been right about Casandra...but more bloodshed wasn't going to repair their group. "Mack! Put the gun away. Put. The gun. Away." He ordered the younger man. Pushing him off to the others, he waited until he saw Mack hand over the gun to Doc before confronting Cassandra with a less volatile touch. "You're gonna tell us everything you know about these guys right now."
"Or I'll shoot you." Warren cocked her own gun. Garnett closed his eyes to repress an eyeroll.
"I can't go back!" Cassandra cried in desperation.
"Back where? Where? Where? Where is she?! Where is she?!" Mack was unhinged, screaming in her face.
Once more, their own voices drowned out the sound of approaching danger.
The dominoes had been knocked over and like all times before someones would be crushed under the last one falling. Having followed the sound of voices and shouting, a lone Z struck gold when he eyed the inattentive survivors just standing around with their back to him. Taking off at a clumsy sprint he grabbed the blonde one closest to him.
Ariel screamed as she was grabbed from behind. Startling the others to attention they watched as it grabbed her shoulder and arm in a vice like grip, it's rotting mouth glowing between frantic chomps at her neck. Her free hand had crossed over her chest and gripped at his jaw with all her might, keeping him away from her neck enough to void a bite but not enough for her to miss the feeling of his snarled lips grazing the raised hairs on her neck. She cried out in desperation, as it overpowered her, bending her forward and making her lose her grip.
It was enough for him to get his meal.
And it was enough for 10k to get a shot.
The growling was ended by a bullet to the head.
The z fell back while Ariel fell forward. On her knees and shaking, she heard some of the group take off after Cassandra who had used their concern as a distraction to slip past them.
A gentle hand rested on her heaving back and Ariel was quick to push them away. Raising on shaking legs she took the brown scarf 10k had offered her with raised hands. Whipping the blood splatter and brain off the side of her face she turned back around to look at the nearly headless zombie. In rage and frustration she kicked at it's corpse. "You - mother - fucking - fuck face!" She screamed with each kick.
Angry and shaken she let Doc pull her into a hug and away from the body.
That was the closest they had seen anyone nearly been bitten, the gobs and drizzle of saliva still shinning on her neck and shoulder. She slapped angrily at her neck, trying in vein to get the feeling of the zombie off her. And with a final kick and scream, she described what every single one of them was feeling.
Having calmed down and had a few swigs of water, Ariel had considerably calmed down. Sitting on the hood of the trucks engine, she rubbed at her neck.
That was close. Way too frickin' close!
The sound of chomping teeth right in her ear would never be forgotten and would only add fuel to her nightmare fire.
The presence of a now damp scarf in her line of sight had her look up.
"You uh, missed a spot. A lot of spots." He pulled a face. She glared at him and yet smiled, taking the brown scarf he held out to her for a second time today and gently rubbed at her face. It was cool and refreshing, and helped her feel so much better. Looking up at him for inspection he thin his lips as if thinking before hesitantly raising a finger to point where she had missed. "Ahh..."
She sighed in defeat and hung her head.
She held the rag up to him in question, assuming he had wanted it back.
So color her surprised when he gently folded the damp edge and picked a piece of skull from her hair before rubbing at the crusted blood by her ear.
"Thanks." She said quietly. It was gentle and kind and made her see the sniper as something other than 'the silent one'. He had done a good job at avoiding eye contact but as soon as she thank him he couldn't avoid it any longer. Meeting her blue eyes and seeing them crinkle with a sweet smile, 10k nervously nodded. "Not just for this." She clarified. "But earlier...ya know...when you kept me from turning into a zombie." She tried to make him smile. "And you were all bad ass- Ah! Look he can smile!" She poked fun at the youngest survivor.
Flexing his jaw muscles to keep from smiling like an idiot, he pulled away from the pretty blonde.
"Hey, they're back." Doc called from the other end of the truck. All attention was on Cassandra as once more she was placed in the middle.
"So are we leaving yet?" Murphy jumped up onto the hood with Ariel.
"No!" He was silenced.
"So who took her?" Doc asked.
"...Cannibals?" Ariel leant forward to hear better.
"Yeah." Warren nodded.
"People eating canni-"
"Yeah. Cannibal-cannibals." She snapped.
"Oh. Okay." Ariel nodded. "Yeah..." Her face twisted up in thought before she shrugged. "I just wanted you hear yourself say it so we could all understand how crazy this is!"
"Reminds me of this joke!" Murphy laughed, drawing their attention. "There was this farmer. Had the smartest pig in the world, Arnold. This pig could read and do math. Arnold was famous." He tried not to laugh through the story, looking at their unamused faced. "And then, one day, the farmer's friend, he comes over and he sees Arnold tripping around on three legs. And he says to the farmer, 'hey, what happened to poor Arnold?' And the farmer says "Smart pig like that...you don't eat him all at once!" Murphy gave a wheezing laugh, tickled pink at his own joke.
Ariel waved a graceful 'presenting' hand in his direction with a tight smile. "The savior of the human race, everybody." She gave three sarcastic slow claps.
"Oh, what? Too soon?" He looked at the rest of them. "Tough crowd." He mumbled before Ariel pushed him off with her foot.
His disgruntled cry went uncared.
"We didn't start out as cannibals."
"Cannibals? How is that even possible" Garnett questioned. "Everything's infected with the zombie virus."
"If you kill it and eat it, you get the live virus. But if you eat it alive..." Cassandra didn't have to finish.
"Oh god, if I had anything other than a half a twinkie in my stomach I would hurl." Ariel put her head between her knees trying to block out the images in her head.
"We were people just trying to survive! Tobias saved me. First from the Zs. Then from the worst of humanity. He was a good man. Then his wife got sick. She just couldn't take it anymore. And he was never the same after that. When Black Summer came and everyone else in the world was starving he swore he would do whatever it took to keep us alive. And he did."
"I'm going back for Addy!" Mack was tired of listening to her. "Garnett, do not try to stop me." He yelled when his path was blocked.
"Nobody's gonna tryo stop you. We're all going back!" He announced to the rest of them. "We just need a plan."
"You don't understand! These people are worse than Zs! They'll kill all of you!" Cassandra screamed. She had the guilt of one person on her conscious. She couldn't stand the guilt of all of their deaths.
"Yeah, she's right." Murphy spoke up. "We need to look at the big picture."
"Shut up!" Once more the group turned on him.
"Do you know where they've taken her?"
Cassandra looked around at their faces, her shoulders dropping with defeat. "Yeah...but it's not gonna be easy."
"How do you think it's going?" Doc looked out in the direction the rest of the group had gone. Out of the way of danger he and Ariel were once more entrusted with the fate of Murphy should they not come back. The clearing sky left the bright sun shining down on them. The truck becoming to hot to just wait in, the three shuffled about on the dirt road, waiting for sight or sound of their friends.
"We're waiting out here in the open while the rest of our group is negotiating a hostage release with cult-y cannibals. Overall I have to say that the day could have gone better." Her stomach twisted in hunger pain. "Oh! And we still have no food." Ariel kicked at a stray can. The old can had tarnished and rusted, collapsing under the strain of her cowboy boot. It was a sad reminded of how rare food had become.
"Well you know what they say: When in Philly, feast like the Phillies do!"
"I swear I will dry heave on you." She threatened Murphy.
"Oh come on! How can we ever trust Cannibal Cassy?!"
"Because she...because..." Unable to think of anything she could only respond. "Shut up, Murphy!"
"Fine. But down come whining to me when you find her nibbling on your sweat salted leg one night!"
"Murphy!" Doc and Ariel yelled before they were silenced by gunfire.
"That didn't sound good."
"What are you doing?" Murphy looked at the blonde folding her arms and laying out on the truck hood as if to sleep.
"Catching some shut eye before we start running around trying to fix whatever they just screwed up."
"So you guys just left her there?" She was expecting someone to get shot, or them to encounter some Z's, not trade off Cassandra for Addy. The later of which was in the other alley changing out of her hooker robe and into spare clothes.
"We didn't have a choice." Garnette yelled through gritted teeth in frustration. She was shorter and thinner than him and half his size, but the unnerving glare that she kept aiming at him was starting to burn into him.
"Hey, we about given up on you." They stopped arguing to look at the changed Addy, wiping her tears away.
"I actually gave up on you about an hour ago." Murphy showed a rare moment of humanity, trying to make the red head feel better.
"Never thought I'd be happy to see your sad ass again." She smiled for the first time since they got her back. She had obviously seen something she wasn't yet ready to talk about and they were all trying to get over is and get out as soon as possible.
"Let's get out of here, guys." Mack opened the door for Addy who, along with Warren and Ariel, froze.
"What? Come on."
"We're not we're not leaving her there, are we?" Addy looked to the rest of the group.
"Addy. She lied to us." Mack turned to logic to persuade her. At which point Ariel raised a finger, to draw attention.
"Actually, no she didn't. Unless one of you guys randomly asked her 'hey do you miss chicken, or pork, or hell how about roasted human flesh?!', She just ommited the truth." The rested her hands on her hips.
"Yeah and it almost got us killed!"
"We can't do that. We can't just leave her there."
"Come in the truck with me. We'll talk about this when you're safe." Mack tried to pull Addy into the car. The redhead retching her hand back.
"I am not going."
Garnett tried to end the discussion. "Look, he's right. We almost all got killed going back for you."
"Yeah, she's a freakin' cannibal, and she got what she deserved." Ariel only had to give Murphy a look to make him shut up and back away.
"She did what she had to do to survive. And you of all people would have done the same."
"Maybe you should jump down from your high horse. We don't know much more than each others name. Hell, we don't even know your name!" She turned to 10k, the young man going wide eyed at the anger she directed at him. "We don't know why you were in prison." She pointed another finger at Murphy. "And we don't know what any of each other did or thought of doing to survive."
"Come on, they're right! We cannot leave her back there! You men don't know what it's like." Warren shouted, shaming them.
"What is this, a chick thing now?"
"Yes!" The three women yelled at him.
Addy stared down Mack, Warren stared down Doc and Garnett, while Ariel had Murphy and 10K trying not to meet her eyes.
The women's unwavering fury made them all cave.
"All right, I want to help her too. But we're not gonna beat a 50 caliber machine gun. It's gonna tear us to pieces before we get to the fence."
"How good a shot are you?"
10k took aimed and shot of a single round, hitting a Z directly in the knee and bring it down. "Pretty good." He shrugged, then continued his ritual. "One thousand eighty-four. Oh yeah, and a half."
"A half?" Doc asked him.
"Okay. Okay...uh...ah! I have an idea." Ariel perked up.
With a sly smile she turned towards Addy. "Something our little cannibal friend taught us. Think you can work your magic and contact Citizen Z?"
"What are you thinking?"
Ariel gave a clever smile and looked to Doc. "How are good are you at being creepy."
"Eh, pretty good."
"Then this might just work."
"Are you sure this is gonna work?"
"Nope." Ariel's hands shook, finding the channel Citizen Z would be playing on.
"You know this is gonna get us all killed, right?" Murphy hissed at them from the back seat of the truck.
"At least we're going out with some style. Crank it up!" Warren ordered, Mack.
The classical music was near deafening from above them, drawing ever Z within a mile towards them. "Here they come!"
"If you got any prayers, now's the time." Warren floored the gas peddle, leading them towards the camp.
10K and Garnett were already at the CCC (Crazy-Cannibal-Cultists) camp, ready to fire. Inside, Doc was posing as a loner looking for some company. He would get Cassandra, wait for the signal, the music playing, and then ambush the guards they would no doubt have. He and Cassandra would then take cover and wait for those coming in the truck to pick them up, while the Zs they lead to the camp over powered the cannibals and 10K took out the gunners.
It wasn't the best plan but so far it seemed to be working. Breaking through the front gate, they heard the gunfire begin, starting and stopping and starting again as the cult tried to kill both the rescue group and the zombies overrunning them.
"In. In. In!" Ariel motioned yelled for them to run to the truck. Opening the door, Cassandra came crashing into Ariel, the blonde reaching to close the door behind her as Warren floored the gas peddle back out of the camp. Slowing down enough for Garnett and 10K to jump into the flat bed with Doc, they didn't look back in their get away.
A few miles later, with no sign of the crazies, Cassandra allowed herself to feel overwhelmingly grateful. Between Ariel and Addy, the girl's who had been most effected by her lies who in turn became two to become her closest allies, Cassandra nearly cried. Turning to the blonde she had butted head with the past week, Cassandra felt a heavy weight be lifted from her shoulders at her secrets being revealed and accepted. Still, she owed her an apology. "About-"
Ariel stopped her, sensing what she was trying to do. "We're cool. You did what you had to to survive. You're a badass. And I'm glad your with us."
Cassandra took Ariel's hand, clutching it tightly as she allowed herself to rest her head on Addy's shoulder. From the radio, Citizen Z began a much needed speech directed not only at them, but what ever other survivors were out there.
"Hope my peeps down in the Philly area can hear this. Thought I'd spin some blues to travel by. And to anybody else out there within the sound of my voice. I hope some slide guitar gets you through another messed up day of death and destruction. Everybody out there, whether you're hiding in a cave or running for your life, just keep doing what you got to do to stay alive. Because in the end, that's the only way we're gonna win this Zombie Apocalypse thing. Bash 'em, slash 'em, bust 'em, and burn 'em. Whatever it takes. Just stay alive. No questions asked."
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