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Rebel Red Carnation (grows while I decay)

Chapter Text

The air feels heavy.

Rain pours outside, trickling down the windowsill of a small apartment. Through the clamouring of the city coming to life, Tyler and Josh tend to packing their things.

"Don't forget your medicine!" Tyler hears Josh yelling from across the house.

"I already have it! Did you text Mark?" No reply. If anything Josh was trying to call him now.

Gunshots can be heard from outside. The bright flashes of sudden fires. The scent of burned rubber is so strong you can smell it inside.

Tyler quickly gathers up his things, clothes, medication, the small amount of food they had fit into a book bag. It wouldn't be enough, but it would last a couple days at least. The van was big enough to hold almost anything, but their main goal was to get on the road before the city was quarantined.

Josh quickly runs into their small bedroom with a baseball bat in one hand, and Jim's leash in the other. "Hold my bat." Josh seems to toss the wooden bat to Tyler as he rushes to grab a pair of his lucky drum sticks and some CDs. "Grab the bags; I'll run through and find the generator."

Tyler nods and quickly gathers up all the bags, and a small medkit. Josh moves ahead to the front door while Tyler spots a switchblade on the desk.

Swiftly, Tyler places the small knife in his pocket before briskly walking towards the door. "It sounds like people are shooting on sight.." Tyler warns, looking to Josh and Jim with worry.

"Just fucking open the door." He states, and with a nod, Tyler firmly places his hand on the doorknob.

The two were exposed to the real chaos. People running down streets only to drop like flies. The house a few blocks over seemed to be ablaze, with flames higher than the trees. There was no law in order, as if they gave up and left everyone to kill each other.

Screams, barking, inhuman growling. These were only a few noises that rang through the thick heavy air. The water that ran along the road was tinted a murky red.

The two darted towards the cargo van. Tyler quickly slides open the larger door and begins to throw supplies into the back. Josh sits the generator neatly in the seat behind the driver's side. "Jim!" Tyler makes a small clicking noise to call the large dog into the van. "Come on, buddy!"

Jim jumps into the back seat of the van with a huff, as Tyler follows behind him. Josh hops in the driver's seat and with a sputter, the van starts.

Speeding through the chaotic town seemed like a dream. Interstates were, more than likely, closed. A sharp thud on the side of the van snapped everyone out of their train of thought.

Josh slams the breaks, sending Tyler and Jim flying out of their seats.

"Please..please! You have to help me!" Josh looks to a taller man who runs to the other side of the van. Although, with a click, the door locks.

Josh couldn't risk getting someone hurt. The man kept trying to open the door with no prevail.

"Josh! Let him in!"

"What if he's infected?"

"Josh, please just--"

A high pitch scream grabs the two's attention as they turn to what was once a living man. The infected attached to his neck by it's teeth kept a strong hold. It's hair was matted with blood. Gunshots scattered around it's body. And then once again, Josh is slamming his foot on the gas.

The van continues on swerving backroad out of Marion. Tyler sat in the backseat, rolling a cigarette for the two to share. Jim lay in a pile of blankets; softly asleep.

As Tyler makes his way to the front seat, Josh begins to laugh.

"We're fucked. This is fucked." Josh laughs through his words as Tyler lights the cigarette. "I don't think we're fucked fully. Half-fucked at most." Tyler says in more a stable tone. "We have Jim and we're going to see Mark. We can stop somewhere when we get tired and rest."

Josh nods and continues to drive in silence while Tyler grabs his phone and plugs it up to the small storm generator in the vehicle.

The rolling tires against the gravel created a soft, rough noise. It was too quiet. The only sounds that existed were the loud engine and Jim snoring.

"I got Mark's dorm number." Josh breaks the silence, suddenly. Tyler smiles in relief. "Thank God." Tyler then asks, "What is it?" Josh finally cracks a smile.

"You wouldn't believe it."

"What is it?"

"Sixty-Nine D."

A loud snort escapes from Tyler, and Josh laughs with him. "I love that!" Tyler exclaims in response. His broken laughs wake up Jim; who barks back at Tyler as if telling him to be quiet. Tyler sighs and looks down as Jim waddles his way to the front seats. "What's up?" Josh asks, more in a serious tone.

"I just hope Jenna is okay."