By the time Anna reached the pier it was almost too late.
She heard the chaos as she and Ethan slept less than a block away in the darkness. They peeked out the windows of the compact SUV they had picked up in Maryland. Made sure there were no dark seekers nearby. Then stripped off the vehicle cover and sped away into the direction of all the commotion.
A large heavily damaged SUV was being rolled over on its side by a tribe of dark seekers bent on getting at whoever was inside. The end of the pier looked like a war zone with dozens of crushed dark seeker bodies laying about.
The driver of this vehicle was either crazy or suicidal to be out there. He was never going to escape the never-ending strength of the infected human beings as they were already finishing flipping the vehicle onto its own roof.
With their prey now suitably immobilized and no longer a threat to them, they moved in for the kill. Anna could not just sit by and watch. What was probably a normal human being was in trouble and about to be devoured…and there were precious few humans left to let that happen.
She slammed on the accelerator
"Ethan! Get a flare!" she commanded. They young boy of nine years old immediately threw himself into the backseat and reached into a carrier box of their ready supplies and withdrew the tube of a old military signal rocket flare. He removed the cap from one end and clambered back into his passenger side seat.
Anna careened down the street like an avenging angel. When she reached the docks she spun the steering wheel rapidly left as she slammed on the brakes. With this maneuver she deliberately skidded several feet…into and over four or five dark seekers who had not yet joined into the rumble. Collateral casualties but it left Ethan's side clear of danger.
"Shoot it off! Shoot it off!" Anna shouted as she reached for her pistol to ward off any danger on her side of the vehicle
Ethan rolled down his window and pointed the metal tube out over the pier. He struck the back end of the metal tube as hard as he could against the side of their SUV. The firing pin at the end tube pierced the primer of the small signal rocket within the cylinder and with a loud 'whoosh' the small unguided missile arced over the water and landed in the middle of the melee at the end of the pier. It was a perfect shot.
On impact the little rocket detonated and a five star cluster of white flares exploded out and around the gang of dark seekers swarming the overturned SUV. The hot white phosphorous incendiaries burned brightly in five spots on the ground and singed the zombies' transparent flesh.
"Good! Good!" Anna complimented the boy. Little Ethan had become quite expert at firing off those things and that saved their life more than once. And now they were going to save the life of whatever human was lucky enough to be alive but crazy enough to be out in the dark amongst the dark seeking infected.
Anna crisply drove out on to the pier as the dozens of startled dark seekers were coming the other direction to escape the brilliant light. They dodged and jumped over her SUV, but some got bull-dozed into the water and almost immediately drowned.
Anna reached the end of the pier and immediately jumped out to assist the over-turned driver. Anna fell down to the ground and began crawling in through the window of the passenger side as Ethan covered the entrance to the pier with more flare launchers at the ready.
She found an alive but badly beat up human man hanging upside-down from the driver's seat. He shielded his eyes from the light and seemed much disoriented. She reached for the knife sheathed to her side and cut him free from his harness.
He fell to the roof, and as she dragged his tall form out from his side he kept on repeatedly grunting out, "What? No! Stop! Are you real? Are you real? Are you really…real!"
"Of course!" she answered under the strain of his weight and exasperated at such a silly question. She finally found an uninfected human man alive and he was apparently close to insanity. "Yes I am real…And…I am trying to rescue you! Now please help me! Come on! Use your legs!"
But he gave no verbal response as he had passed out in her arms upon hearing that. Little Ethan helped her carry him to their truck.