This fabulous story is the sequel to Spice and Atmospheric Water Phenomena. I highly recommend you read that first, if you haven't already. The continuing story of Anise Barrows cannot stand by itself and is a direct tie to SAWP. Unlike the previous story, I don't have this one completed already. I intend it to be much longer and far more in depth with original plots, characters, and storyline.
Standard disclaimers apply. If I owned Resident Evil, then I'd be driving a much nicer Jeep than the one I own, Rain would have lived, and at least one lesbian character would have made her way into the films.
Rated M for violence, language, gore, and sexual themes.
chapter 1 revised 28Apr2013 - Thanks to my mom for her help with cleaning up and revising the story. Even though reading this story out loud to her can get a little awkward sometimes, her support is invaluable. I would take all the awkwardness in the world to keep the awesome relationship I have with her.
One Step at a Time
All Anise really wanted to do was punch the guy in his face. She missed Rain, who would have already done it. For about the thousandth time, she wondered what had happened to the feisty soldier and the others. No one could tell her. Or wouldn't.
Buck, because he liked the nickname, and she really thought that Gerald did not fit him, mouthed don't at her. She sighed. Punching Nate, although satisfying, would start a fight, and he would yell loud enough to attract every fucking zombie inside Raccoon City. Knowing the guy for less than two hours, and already well aware of what an ass he was, really gave her a headache. If he was anything less than a perfect shot with his high caliber rifle, she would have left his bitchy ass behind a long time ago. As it was, she needed his help to get her little band of survivors through the city. So, she bit her cheek and kept silent about his latest remark on her tits.
It had turned out that Buck was Doc Belst's nephew. Anise had taken him under her wing. The boy was loyal and well trained with his pistol and combat knife. He listened to what she said, had a sly sense of humor, and only complained occasionally. It was also great that he could carry Anise when her weakened body gave out on her. Umbrella had sewn her back together, and she was healing, although slowly, very slowly. Her body was exhausted from trying to replace more than half of her blood, healing her numerous other injuries, and exorbitant amounts of physical and mental stress. She wanted to curl up and sleep until the next century.
Anise flexed her damaged hand. It throbbed and complained. Scabs and tender new flesh hid beneath the bandaging. She was still far from whole, but she wasn't going to let little things like missing chunks of flesh or just barely surviving mortal injuries keep her from being useful. Anise had picked up a sturdy aluminum baseball bat to help keep the zombies at bay. Only problem was, wielding her impromptu weapon with her left hand was awkward, since her injured right hand was her dominant. Buck stayed close to her side, nominating himself her personal bodyguard. She hated to admit it, yet her exhaustion forced her to rely heavily on the kid. Since Rabbit had taken on a small mob of infected to provide a distraction for the main group to get away, Anise had been silently nominated as leader.
The tired woman had learned that Rabbit's name was Rachel and was one of Terri's older sisters. Rachel had been an Umbrella employee that worked above ground. Her hacking skills had led her to the hospital where Anise had been kept for observation after surgery. Rachel had been another member of the movement that Matt was involved with. Apparently, Terri had been as well. Anise wondered how much of her friend's family was still alive. She shook her head of those thoughts and moved forward.
Moving through the dying city was slow going. Twilight's hazy light caused havoc with her vision. Infected were harder to pick out among the growing shadows. She was relying more on her hearing and Nate's rifle-scope to lead them around trouble. Their goal was an underground tunnel/bomb shelter that upper management in Umbrella had built in case of emergency. For official use only, of course. Rachel had known about it and shared her knowledge with every survivor they picked up.
Speaking of survivors, Anise looked over their newest recruit. He was another Umbrella employee that the monstrous company had left for dead. Shane had given them a really depressing bit of news. They only had until morning to evacuate before Umbrella dropped a fuckin nuke on their heads. That meant not only escaping the city, but getting miles away from it too. No one believed that the bomb shelter would save them. Even if the shelter was nuke proof, Umbrella would likely sanitize it as soon as they realized it had survived detonation.
Gunfire rattled in the distance. Only hours ago the sound had come from every direction. Now, it was sparse and sounded irregularly. The city was in its death throes. Anise could officially mark today as 'Worst Day Ever'. She stumbled over a fallen body. Buck steadied her, his young face worried. He really was a good kid. Too bad his family was dead.
One of those things had attacked their sad little group. Someone called it a Licker because of its awful tongue. She agreed. Their group was lucky, having only lost three people. One of them was the Umbrella commando, who had finished off the Licker by literally shoving a live grenade down its throat. The explosion had taken them both and blown their body parts across a city block. Anise's baseball bat had been useless against the creature, and it made her feel like a useless lump of shit. Nate was still alive and made a remark about a wet t-shirt contest when she complained she wanted a shower. Buck had to hold her back to keep Anise from beating Nate to death and opening her stomach wound in the process. He took his job as Anise's bodyguard very seriously.
According to Rachel's instructions, they were still many blocks away from the tunnel. It was just about sunset. Fourteen people were still alive in the group. Nate was one of them and talked constantly about finding a hooker and having her... Ugh. Anise did not understand that particular fetish. She turned her mind to better prospects, like taking a hot bath and scarfing a roast beef dinner with garlic butter and mashed potatoes. Yum. Maybe a couple bottles of wine too. That would be perfect.
She picked up on a herd of zombies shambling nearby and motioned her group down an alley. Buck kicked down a door to an empty diner. They took a brief break to guzzle down water and snacks. A half hour later, they resumed their perilous journey. Anise was having trouble walking, so Buck was half carrying her weight. She could sense his strength lagging as the long day worn on. Unable to consider what she would do without him, she turned her sight to the fading sunlight.
The sun's last rays were streaking across the sky. It was a truly beautiful September sunset with intense scarlets, brilliant oranges, ravishing violets, and not a cloud in sight. With a balmy eighty degrees, said the bank's LED display, it would have been a perfect date night. The universe really had a warped sense of humor.
Around midnight, Buck was piggybacking Anise as her legs simply refused to carry her anymore. The stitches from her surgery had split hours ago. Blood ran freely down her mule's back. He had also stopped complaining about the stickiness of it some time ago. Nate was picking off zombies that trailed behind them.
Only two kids still survived and they huddled around Buck and Anise. She hoped that she wouldn't let them down. Watching kids get eaten was definitely on her top ten of things that would give her nightmares. Shivering, she focused on her enhanced hearing again, helping as much as she could. Buck looked back at her only to be softly patted on the cheek and told to keep moving.
The building looked like an old warehouse. Inside, it was a high tech facility with nasty defense mechanisms that unfortunately left Nate alive. Anise sighed. There were no infected inside. At least there was that. A couple of Umbrella employees were hiding and luckily they were smart enough to not shoot at the ragtag group. They joined them when they learned that Anise had the codes to enter the tunnel. It was just two hours until dawn.
Anise fumbled with the keypad by the massive blast doors. It beeped access denied twice before her trembling fingers punched in the code correctly. Buck continued carrying her down to an elevator that required the code again. The elevator held everyone, and it wasn't even a tight fit. It was designed for mass volume, freight. Anise hoped the morons had not stored anything dangerous down there. They wouldn't survive another Licker attack. If she had any other choice, she would avoid being underground ever again.
After another set of blast doors, a tunnel opened before them when the elevator reached bottom. It was a long, brightly lit, concrete passage with occasional crates and barrels of supplies, forklifts, nothing very exciting. Their harsh breathing and heavy footsteps echoed loudly. Eventually there was another door and behind it, an extravagant living area massive enough to rival the Hive. Couches, TVs, kitchens and well stocked pantries, bathrooms, offices, bedrooms, a gym and basketball court, it had everything needed to comfortably ride out a holocaust. They hurried through it, only stopping for the kids to pee. Time was running out.
Another long tunnel led to another elevator. They rode it up impatiently. Another high tech facility housed the exit. On the outside it looked like a rundown farmhouse. No vehicles were in sight.
Dammit. So they continued walking. It was an hour until detonation. They rounded a bend in the road and finally some luck shined upon them. A half empty school bus turned party bus picked the group up. The partygoers stared at their blood spattered, sweat soaked clothing, and assorted weaponry. Nate was useful and pointed his empty rifle at the driver and told him to max out the speedometer, get them as far from Raccoon City as possible. The driver did not argue. Wheels squealed as he floored the gas pedal. Anise leaned on Buck and promptly fell asleep.
Glaring sunlight woke her up. She blinked groggily. It was impossibly bright and pained her sleepy eyes. The bus was swerving, people were screaming, Buck held her close to his body and saved her life when the bus crashed. Her knee slammed into metal. She shrieked at the excruciating pain before blacking out again.
The intense light was gone, the grey light of dawn had replaced it, coming in through broken windows. Her knee throbbed painfully, and she silently told it to fuck off and her bleeding abs could shut the hell up too, she was tired of hurting. She gingerly sat up from her new position on the ceiling to find Buck not moving. For a moment, she listened for his heartbeat, but her ears were ringing too loudly. Scared to know if he was dead or not, she hesitantly pressed her fingers to his neck. The faint throb of his heart brought a tiny smile to her lips.
Around her people were starting to move, crying, bleeding, vomiting, stumbling, and cradling broken limbs. Most of them were alive. Anise turned back to her oversized teenage sidekick and looked for any extra injuries. He was bleeding from a head wound, so she peeled back his eyelids to check his pupils. They both dilated and retracted evenly, so if he had a concussion it was minor. Small favors made her happy, and her smile grew. She prodded his massive shoulder, and he started to stir.
"What happened?" He groaned.
Grinning widely now, she replied casually. "Oh not much, zombie apocalypse followed by nuclear explosion, and then the bus crashed."
"We got out?"
"Hey, you two aren't dead yet either." Nate's smirking face appeared next Anise. She growled. "Hey, so now that we're out, you wanna fuck later? Your kid can join, I've always..." Anise decked him.
"Fuck that hurt." She grimaced, shaking her bleeding hand. His teeth had split her knuckles.
"Feel better?" Buck commented dryly.
Anise smiled, her dimples crinkled, and all of her teeth showed. "Much."