Chapter 17

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Chapter 17

The Scout convoy continued down the highway, now with a plan and a destination in mind. Ricky had quickly spread the word of his idea to go to Citaview Park and there was an almost celebratory atmosphere in each of the vehicles. The amusement park was a popular summer destination that most of the boys had gone to many times. They all had their own fond memories about various trips and the stories flew back and forth between the Scouts as they traveled.

Occasional dead were encountered as they drove, wandering aimlessly down the highway. Mike continued to drive in the front and, as they neared, the walkers tried to move out of his way.

Mike didn’t even try to run them down. His family’s safety was all he could think of as he drove. As they had gotten closer to the city his worries had grown. Would he find them alive and waiting for rescue when he finally found them? Would he find them at all?

“Dad?”

“Hmm?” Mike shook his head and looked over at his son. “Sorry, what was that, Kyle?”

“I asked what you would have from the candy shop if there’s still stuff in it.”

Mike smiled at the boy. “I hadn’t really thought about it, Kyle. I’m sure I’ll find something."

“What were you thinking about, Dad?” Kyle asked.

“Nothing much,” Mike said.

“Yeah, right,” Kyle said. “That’s why you didn’t hear anything I said. I know that look on your face, Dad. You are worried about Mom and Diana.”

Mike nodded. “You’re right, Kyle. I AM worried about your mom and sister. I wonder if they are all right. I wonder if the dead walk around our house. I wonder a lot of things.”

Kyle bowed his head. “I wonder about that too.” His eyes were shining when he looked up again. “They are both smart and tough. They’ll be okay.” Then under his breath he murmured, “I hope.”

“All we can do is hope and pray, son,” Mike said. “Knowing your mother, the dead are probably on the run trying to get away from her.”

Kyle smiled at that. “Yeah! I can just see Mom chasing some dead guy down the street.”

“What do you think? Axe or my katana?”

Kyle considered that question. “Neither. I think she would use a two-by-four.”

The two shared a laugh and Mike felt the tightness in his chest momentarily release. Kyle was right. His mother was a very capable person. She would have seen something strange was happening and taken steps to protect herself and Diana.

He tried to focus on the stories the boys were telling each other then. It wouldn’t do to be too self-absorbed. They would sense it and worry themselves. Mike smiled when he realized the story Kyle had just launched was one where the two of them had tried to set the record for most consecutive times on the log ride. It had been a cold May afternoon. By the time they had finished neither of them could feel their fingers or toes.

Yup, good times!

The main highway was coming up. Mike gripped the steering wheel hoping to see other vehicles for the first time. He watched for the truck stop to become visible as he came up to the overpass.

The highway was visible first. There weren’t any vehicles on it that he could see. That wasn’t necessarily a bad thing though.

Then he saw the truck stop.

He almost started to cry.

Figures shambled between the smouldering ruin that had been the main building and the pile of cars that covered a large portion of the parking lot. Two police cars sat near the wrecked cars, their lights flashing.

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