At first, Wyatt was the only one open to my idea, but once Ben and Jo realised we had no other choice, they soon came around. 
Within half an hour, I had already transformed Jo and Ben into half-decent zombies.

Using my Bruise Wheel – a small tub containing a four-colour wheel of concealer (red, grey, purple and brown) – as well as some tomato sauce from the diner as blood, they looked undead enough to be able to blend in to the growing parade of zombies outside.
This just might work, I thought as I put the finishing touches on my own zombie makeup. 
Wyatt walked into the office and slid the door closed behind him, leaving us alone again for the first time since this morning, which already seemed like so long ago after everything we had been through.

“Hey,” he said before walking towards me to take a seat on the desk. “I’m ready to be undead.” He joked as he closed his eyes, waiting for me to start turning him into one of the infected.
My heart started racing as I dipped my makeup brush into the grey concealer and started dotting it all over his face.
I had never been this close to him before, so close that I could almost hear his heartbeat, and I swore it was beating even faster than mine.
“Do you think we’ll make it out of here?” I said quietly, blending the concealer over his eyelids.
“Of course we will. I know our plan is a bit sketchy, but it’s all we’ve got. And after seeing you kick that zombie’s ass before, I know you’ll be fine.”
“I hope so.” I cringed at the thought of that creature, the sickening crunch of the knife going into its skull. 
“I know so. I mean, I knew you were strong, but jeez. You stabbed that thing right in the face, Eva. It was amazing. You’re amazing.”

The butterflies fluttered about in my stomach, but I ignored his compliment. After what I heard last night, I found it hard to trust his kind words now.
“I lied last night, Eva,” he said, not opening his eyes even though I had finished applying makeup to them. “Tom’s a sleaze. I couldn’t to tell him the truth. Last year, when our old drummer, Will, told us about a girl he liked, Tom purposely started flirting with her and they hooked up two weeks later. Will was crushed. He left the band because of it.” He paused, waiting for me to reply.
“Wyatt, it’s okay. We’ve got more serious things to worry about right now. Forget it.” I said, wondering if he was telling the truth.
“No, I won’t,” he said as he opened his eyes. “If I don’t tell you this now, I might not ever get the chance.”
He held my hands in his and looked into my eyes, demanding my attention.
“Tom’s like a kid who isn’t interested in a toy until another kid picks it up and starts playing with it. Not that I think you’re a toy… Ugh. This isn’t going well.” He sighed, pausing before continuing his speech.
“If I told him the truth… If I told him what I really think about you, he’d be all over you. You heard the way he spoke about women last night; he’s a pig. No way was I going to let him near you.”

I realised I had stopped breathing. I let out a sigh and took in a long, deep breath as I matched his gaze. He searched my eyes, as though trying to read my thoughts. 
“So, what is the truth?” I managed to ask, my heart pounding in my chest.
“The truth is…” He trailed off, looking down at our intertwined hands as he spoke.
“The truth is, I think you’re the most beautiful, smart, amazing girl I’ve ever met and I think about you all the time. I love that you’re independent. I love that you are strong and that you don’t need a guy to save you all the time. I love… everything about you.”

He looked up at me then, the corner of his mouth turning up into a half-smile as he continued.
“That’s what I wanted to talk to you about last night, Eva. That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you for months, but I was… I didn’t want to ruin our friendship if…” He paused again, closing his eyes as he cringed. “If you didn’t feel the same way. But I couldn’t take it anymore, especially when I saw that Cosmo Guy hitting on you last night…” He rolled his eyes. “I knew I had to take a chance and tell you. So, here I am.”
He waited anxiously, trying to gauge my reaction.

I had stopped breathing again. The butterflies in my stomach had sparked into a frenzy, sending flutters of excitement dancing through my veins. 
What could I possibly say to such a sweet revelation? Words eluded me, so I decided to do something I had wanted to do ever since I laid eyes on him.
I smiled at the thought of what I was about to do, and Wyatt’s shoulders relaxed once he saw happiness spread across my face. 
Slowly, I leaned in towards him, and he responded by doing the same. With our lips finally about to touch, I felt the butterflies going wilder than ever before.
This is it, I thought. 
This is my moment.

A loud crash echoed throughout the diner, interrupting our perfect moment and bringing us tumbling back down to reality.
Quickly, Wyatt stood up, slamming the door sideways as he ran out into the diner, with me right behind him to see what had happened.
Ben was standing with his hands covering his ears from the noise, and was surrounded by pieces of broken plates all around him on the floor. 
“What did you do?” Wyatt asked Ben, clearly frustrated.
“Sorry, I… I knocked the plates over. It was an accident.” He apologised.
“Uh. Guys?” Jo called from the other side of the counter, looking out the window. 
We all turned to face the windows of the diner to see at least a dozen zombies stumbling up to the glass.
“I think they know we’re here now!” She whimpered as she backed up, side-stepping her way around the counter to grab hold of my arm.

“Time to leave!” Said Wyatt as he ran back into the office to grab our weapons. 
“How are we going to get passed them now?” I asked, running in behind him to grab my satchel.
“We won’t, not with so many of them out there waiting for us. We’ll have to hideout in the basement.” Answered Ben as Wyatt passed him his makeshift spear.
My stomach turned as we quickly ran out of the diner and into the hallway, headed for the basement. 
There’s no way we’ll survive this now. 
I followed the others as Wyatt opened the door into the stairwell and started running down the stairs.

“Wait!” I whispered, and they all stopped on the stairs to look back at me. “We’ll die down there. We have to get to the car.”
Wyatt stepped back up the stairs and onto the landing to face me. 
“They’re waiting for us out there. We don’t have any other choice.” He said softly, taking hold of my hand.
“Yes we do.” I replied, pulling him towards the trolleys.

I knew we only had two choices:

Leave.

Or die.

As They Rise (The Eva Series #1)Read this story for FREE!