Guys, this is the part 3 of his short horror story. You can read the part 2 here.
Alex had yet to settle at his desk when he heard a loud noise. The commotion seemed to be coming from outside and from the sound of it, it looked big. It also wasn’t something he could ignore. He left his desk and headed for the door.
The scene outside was confusing, people ran in all directions and for the life of him, he couldn’t seem to guess what was wrong. Against his better judgment, he inched towards the spot he felt was causing the commotion. As he got closer, people pushed against him as they made to escape from what he was yet to find out.
Lying on the floor a few feet away, was a young girl drenched in blood. She seemed immobile; like she’d fainted. Not too far from where she laid was the girl he had ran into earlier; the one who had stared at him like she had seen a ghost.
She had that same look on her face right now as she started at the lady on the floor. If he didn’t know better, he would say she looked terrified.
What was going on? Why was the lady on the floor? Why was no one helping her? Why did the girl stare at her with such look of fear?
He made towards the sick girl on the floor. He was no doctor, but at least he knew a thing or two about CPR and maybe there was something he could do to offer some comfort to the sick lady while he got some medical help.
Alex was about squating by the sick girl, when he heard sirens blaring towards them. It all happened in a moment. Next thing he knew, they were surrounded by vehicles. Out jumped out men fully kitted up in protective hazmat suits. A few held guns, and inched slowly towards them.
He stared on in confusion, everything was happening so fast, like he was dreaming. He looked around and saw the lady, standing perfectly still; the look on her face had changed to one of resignation, like she had an idea what was happening.
“What’s going on?”He echoed his thoughts at her, but she only gave him a searing look; a look that seemed to bore through to his soul.
In that instant, Alex felt a jolt, a kindred connection, like they had shared a lifetime before. He blinked and shook his head, wanting to clear the craziness from his thoughts. This was crazy. This lady was a perfect stranger, shocked by the happenings around.
He looked on at the men who surrounded them and for the first time he realized they were not the only ones; they were about seven people in all and they were being led towards a van, albeit forcefully.
One of the men in the suit drew closer and Alex asked, “Sir, what’s going on?”
“You are being quarantined.”
“Quarantined?” he was thrown into further confusion. “How? Why? What for?”
“It will all be explained when you get to the center,” the man replied calmly. “In the meantime, please co-operate and get into the van. We do not want to apply any form of force whatsoever, but we will if we have to.”
He moved on, and just in front of him Alex saw the strange girl. She was so quiet, it was almost eerie. She looked like she knew what this was all about. He had to get to her; find out what was going on before he went out of his mind
- * *
Dreams don’t come true! Dreams don’t come true! Babine kept chanting to herself as she followed the directives of the men in the hazmat suit. Somewhere in her subconscious, she was aware of Alex trying to get her attention. But his efforts seemed to fall short as she ignored him.
She was in a trance; one she was yet to wake from. That seemed the best and safest place for her to be in right now, until she could make head of what was happening.
She remained in this haze all through the trip, her eyes silently scanning the faces before her. These people, like herself, had been at the wrong place at the wrong time. They remained silent, their faces registering the confusion, terror, and dread that must be coursing through them.
Somewhere in the crowd she saw Alex, he was seated quite far from her. Their eyes met and his seemed to bore through her soul, searching her, like he was trying to pry a deep secret out of her.
She averted her gaze, choosing to stare beyond his head instead. There was that strange connection again; one she didn’t understand, nor did she care to at the moment. Too much was happening too soon for her to be bothered about a connection- if that was what this was- with a complete stranger.
The vehicle lurched to a halt and everything else happened in a blur; she was aware of being marched into a building, along with the other occupants of the van, saw the curious and pitying looks that were cast their way, and the men in suit struggling not to have any body contacts with them.
They were ushered into a hall that was bare, save for the few mats and benches scattered haphazardly around. She had no idea what this place was, but whatever it was, it was barely fit to house humans. It seemed seldom used and ill-maintained. The walls were brown and dirty, with patches of peeled paints hanging on the wall. Someone had tried to make the place fit, but what little had been done in the area of presentability had been done hastily and seemed shabby at best.
“Miss. Please tell me what is going on before I go out of my mind”, the voice sounded right behind her and she jumped. She hadn’t seen him move towards her. He sat beside her and the bench, staring at her with that penetrating gaze that seemed to strip her of her skin.
“I don’t know, Alex”, she supplied quietly. “This is strange to me too.”
He was quiet for a while, watching her, then sighed. “This just keeps getting stranger. My name is Allen, not Alex, though how you could get it so close baffles me. Have we met before? And also, contrary to what you just said, I can’t help but feel there’s more to this; something you are not saying.”
It was Babine’s turn to stare. Yes, there was something, all right, and she planned on keeping it so. She could very well imagine the look on his face if she told him she had met him before; in her dreams and that they had been chased and almost captured by flesh-eating zombies. He would think her mad and delusional.
“Well, Alex…Allen”, she corrected. “I can’t imagine what you think I may be hiding from you. You were there yourself. The whole scene played out in front of you as well. You saw what happened. Why would you think I would know any different?”
Allen scratched his head, his confusion deepening as he saw his hope of a possible explanation disappearing. She had been his only hope of making sense of this sudden quarantine, like they’d called it.
Babine saw the play of emotions on his face; from expectancy, to frustration, and then mild irritation before settling on confusion. His eyes suddenly became deep and drifted away to somewhere deep within himself. She took that opportunity to study him.
His eyes were not the only reason she felt connected to him. He exuded an aura that just drew one in. His clean-shaven haircut and well trimmed beards seemed to give him a cool, calm, but edgy look. She also noticed he was tall; way taller than her 5’10 inches.
His looks, coupled with the broad expanse of his chest, all combined to give him powerful strong charisma.
Allen saw her studying him but pretended not to notice. He couldn’t fault her for doing so, he’d done his own fair share of studying earlier as she sat quietly. And with the heat of the moment, he would not admit to himself that he found her stunning. Her smooth, blemish-free skin, her clear dark brown eyes and small slightly lopsided nose had struck at him. He’d also noticed she was tall and for the life of him, the danger they were in hadn’t dulled his senses to the fact that she was full breasted and well proportioned in the figure hugging gown she wore.
She was a stunner, but that was fact for another day. Currently he had to leave the situation he was in and return to work. His colleagues would have noticed his absence by now. Why hadn’t anyone called? It was unlike him to leave the office for long periods without explanations.
The door suddenly swung open and some men stepped in. They were still fully kitted in protective gears and Alex noticed they stopped just by the entrance.
“We apologize for haven kept you here so long without an explanation”, the man began.”But with the recent development, we are left with little or no choice.”
“And what development would that be!”a man sputtered angrily behind. “You people just swamped in on us as we went about our businesses in the streets and bundled us like rams into your vans. What nonsense explanation do you have!”
“We understand you have a right to be angry, but with the recent outbreak of the plague, our primary aim now is to curtail the spread as much as possible.”
“What plague?” A girl asked quietly from the front. The hall had grown silent as they waited for the man to explain.
“There’s been an outbreak of The Black Death, septicemic plague. So far, we have only one recorded case. We had her under quarantine and were trying to keep things on the low, but she escaped quarantine earlier today.”
“So far, we are not sure how many people she’s had contact with, but we are being as cautious as possible and rounding up every primary and secondary contacts of hers. You will all be tested and kept here in quarantine for the next seven days so you can all be monitored. We are hoping none of you will test positive to the disease, but if it so happens that anyone does, we are well equipped with drugs to combat the issue.”
Babine listened in shock and slight disbelief as the man explained what the plague was. According to him, the disease had an incubation period of 3-7 days during which painful and life threatening symptoms were developed.
She remembered the lady that had been covered in blood, how weak she had looked, the look of death in her eyes just before she slumped to the ground.
Tag: story, short story, a short horror story