"Don't shoot me, I'm Brandon Weston" he screamed at them spit flying from his mouth, body shaking with chills and terror. "Please let me up there, don't let those things get a hold of me! Please!" he begged the men that had him sighted in their rifle scopes. "PLEASE" he begged again frantically as he looked back over his shoulder at the carnage to see if any of those things had gotten closer. A shot whizzed by him as someone shouted his name. It took him a few seconds to register that Sgt. Pavilov was gesturing to him. Brandon clawed his way up the bank as if the hounds of hell were snapping at his heels. As he neared the top Sgt. Pavilov reached over the barrier and finished hauling him to safety just as a barrage of gunfire split the air.
"What's happening, my faa....family" he gasped at the Sgt as he limply gestured in the direction from which he had just come. " Is your family safe?" questioned Pavilov. Choking back tears Brandon shook his head no.
"Ok, ok, lets go get you some water and you can fill me in and I'll give you the details as we know them." Sgt. Pavilov stated as he gave Brandon a hand up from the ground. " It's a hell of a situation."
Once inside the command center Brandon received a blanket and bottle of water. He followed Sgt. Pavilov as he headed up the curved staircase to the room they were using as the main base. As they walked in an officer immediately began relaying information. When he finished they conferred quietly for a minute then Pavilov gave a nod of his head and the officer left the room. He turned towards Brandon who was sitting on a bench seat wrapped in a wool blanket, wet hair plastered to his head looking tired and dazed. "Tell me about the situation on the other side of the river."
Swallowing hard, Brandon began relating the details of the past couple of hours. When he finished speaking they both sat quietly for a minute or two caught up in their own thoughts.
"How did this happen? Is it just around here?"
Rubbing his rough hand across his face Sgt Pavilov sighed heavily "No, but we are unsure of how wide spread it is. We are assuming the cause is from something toxic. We put a call in to Homeland Security but things spiraled out of control quickly leaving us in this position until help arrives." Standing up he gave Brandons knee a pat and said" Rest here for a bit, I'll have some one bring dry clothes to you then get you armed and oriented."
Closing his eyes and trying not to think about all the horrific images that assailed him, Brandon knew that he was on his own now and this was the safest place to be at the moment. The only thing left of his family were the treasured memories.