Five-part sci-fi adventure by A. Bradley Green. In a time far from now, humanity has lost dominance of earth and is no longer on top of the food chain. A lone team struggles to uncover the mysteries beyond the ruins of a dystopian earth.
PART 1: “This is Only a Trap”
Nil Zone 12
Ancient Factory City, Earth
Sector 7 of Nil Zone 12 was considered safe by the Human Liberation Front (HLF), yet caution beacons where still in place almost a year later. The HLF shielded this area from Biolec activity by posting ion barriers along a 3 mile perimeter. This was supposed to make the sector safer for patrols and outland families dealing with daily Biolec attacks.
The first four months of relocation went off without issues. Month five however, two sections of the ion barrier failed, leaving new communities exposed to surprise attacks by hordes of demon dogs, which Sector 7 seemed to be overrun with.
Demon dogs originated from a pack of wolves poisoned by the same radiation that has turned the world upside down. Bright yellow eyes, matted fur over torn decayed reptilian skin, stretched over sharp angled bones. They looked like a cross between a Komodo dragon and a wolf that dug its way up from hell with an appetite for human flesh. Not something you want to be on the feeding end of.
Sector patrol had their hands full burning out dens and rescuing what outlanders they could, which left half of the communities to fend for themselves. That was unless you had the right amount of credmarks. Rescue services were available. Special “Teams” that you could pay to handle threats where HLF and Sector patrol fell short.
Trish and her companions, Scott and Norm, could use their services. They were en route to deliver what they believed to be an urgent medical package to Sector 6. Their utility truck malfunctioned on the way, stranding them a few miles south of Sector 6 west gate, nearest to the barrier breach. The trio would have to cross through a section of the ancient factory city on foot. The digital tagmark for the area on the sector map was dubbed, “Miracle Mile,” due to the mortality rate so near to the breach.
They were guided by Norm’s sector map on his handheld avatar device, keeping the screen dim since bright lights and noises attracted demon dogs. The trio moved quickly and quietly through the brisk night heading toward one of many factory cities long since abandoned during another dark time. They were unaware of the eyes that followed their every movement. Snake-like tongues tasted their jagged blood-stained teeth as they leaped forward for their first meal of the night.
Scott, green BDU jacket and black knitted skull cap, carried a medium sized olive drab canvas duffle bag over one shoulder as he ran for his life. He was able to shoot the first three demon dogs who were stalking them, which alerted the pack. Norm, black BDU jacket, floppy beige fedora, made the mistake of looking back at how many demon dogs were on their heels. He pointed at a doorway entering one of the abandoned sites. Trish, red jacket, glasses, led them through the doorway into the old factory floor before the hounds could catch up.
“We need to find someplace to use this,” Norm pulled out a barrier cube. It sets up a shield that lasts for three days on a full charge.
“We can’t cover every breach in a place this big, we need to find someplace with one point of entry to use that,” said Scott as they ran through the vast interior of the factory building, fearful of every shadow. As they ran they could hear shattering glass echo through the cavernous domain, claws scratching on old tile floors, looking for traction to continue the chase.
“Quick! In here!” yelled Trish. They rushed into a dark room and scrambled to set up the barrier cube on the floor in front of the doorway to seal the entry. Switched on, it emitted a dull blue light that made a laser line on the floor, ceiling and adjacent walls to show the fields reach. A few seconds later at least six demon dogs slammed into the static field and were knocked back a few times until they realized they weren’t getting through. They decided to lay down and wait them out in front of the doorway.
Norm used his avatar to light the space they were trapped in. Besides graffiti and the invasive ecosystem, there was nothing useful. It would be their tomb if they couldn’t find a way out. There was a square opening high up on the wall inside the room, too small to climb through, but it allowed them to hear the demon dogs walking around outside. The place was surrounded.
“What the hell are we going to do now,” yelled Norm. He was scared. They all were. Scott Knelt down beside the barrier cube with a shocked look on his face.
“An hour and ten minutes? Norm? Why does this thing only have an hour and ten on it,” Scott asked, obviously pissed.
“That’s news to me,” Norm answered which wasn’t enough for Trish who then added ,“Have you ever charged it?”
“I thought it just held a charge until you needed to use it?”
Trish shut her eyes and turned away while Scott fought the urge to strangle Norm. “I can’t believe you!”
Trish yelled, “We only have an hour to figure out how to get out of here? This is seriously fucked guys! Seriously!”
“Is your avatar transmitting?” asked Norm.
“It’s not working in here. Too much interference,” said Trish. “These old factory cities have terrible reception.”
“We can’t just sit here, we have to figure this out!” Scott took the duffle bag off his shoulder and poked around looking for anything useful, instead discovered an oddity. The package, which was supposed to be medical supplies, medicine, bandages and equipment, was actually a sack with a paper note and a business card attached for a rescue service named Team Cross. The note was directed to “whomever this may concern.”
“What the hell is all this?” Scott’s eyes bugged out as he pulled a blaster weapon from the bag.
TO BE CONTUNUED…
Yikes! What’s next? Will it be a “blast from the past” or “every (demon) dog has its day”? Keep an eye out for the next installment of Monster Genocide in November’s issue of The Local. Monster Genocide is a five-part sci-fi thriller by local author A. Bradley Green.