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A deathly silence has fallen over my rural town. It’s not a surprise, seeing as how most of the people in this godforsaken place are either dead or close to. The stench of blood has filled the air for the past two weeks, but this entire ordeal started months ago. My town, in all honesty, got lucky. I’m writing this because, fuck it, there’s nothing left to do. It’s too dangerous to go outside. I don’t know what’s out there. They might be gone, but that possibility remains.

It was a foggy Saturday night when I first recall seeing the news alert flash across the screen. “Explosion In California” flashed under a breaking news banner. I was at my girlfriend’s house at the time. She needed someone to fix her shower faucet, she said, but I think she was just paranoid about some random thing. Her paranoia was kind of cute, when it wasn’t directed at me that is. Anyway, I remember the news reporter as he reported, “Remnants of an explosion were found in California today. Nothing seems to be wrong and no one is injured.” It was not even four hours later when the news had interrupted the basketball game for another breaking news report. “Riots have erupted in California has reports of brutal murders and cannibalism have flooded in to our news station,” the same reporter from earlier said. I watched as buildings were ablaze. Bodies were strewn across the streets. Guts were hanging out, and some even severed from the bodies. Skin had been ripped off, and bones were found chewed up on the sidewalks. Roads were crimson with all the blood that had spilled. “Jesus Christ Jacob, what the hell happened?” my girlfriend asked.

I had no answer. Hell, no one did. What the fuck happened in that short amount of time? I didn’t know, but I honestly wasn’t worried at the time. I live in Maine, which is extremely far away from Cali. If this was an outbreak of some sort, then it’d take some time for it to reach me or my girl. I was wrong. It was later revealed that the explosion took place at a scientific research lab, and one of the scientists had been experimenting with a disease. This disease escaped into the air when the explosion, caused by a chemical mishap, occurred. That’s when the outbreak began. It spread quickly into neighboring states like Oregon, Washington, and Nevada. From there, it spread like wildfire.

It was first documented in Maine two months ago, about seven months after the outbreak began. The death toll was in the millions and skyrocketing. These beings had evolved in their tactics. If they didn’t eat you, they went the chupacabra route and drank your blood. Sometimes they’d just rip you into pieces with their, I guess, bare hands. Their hands didn’t have skin on them like you and me. If their hands had skin at all, it was likely skin from their victims that clung to their bones. They didn’t even have to touch you to kill you. Some say their breath is so pungent and disgusting that it could kill a horse. I can confirm, as I saw it happen.

I remember when they popped up in my town. I was lying in bed with my now wife. We were doing our favorite thing, other than each other: talking. The most blood curling scream broke our conversation. I sprang up from the bed in an absolute panic. I opened the front door…and immediately regretted it. A car was literally thrown down the street. There were creatures, I can’t really call them human, running from house to house and killing. You could hear bones snap and tendons pop, even from long distance. There were fires, blood was pooling in the street and dripping off rooftops in some cases. I hurried back inside and proceeded to barricade the house. I only did it as a precaution. There was a bomb shelter in our basement. Why it was in our basement and not outside of the house, I don’t know, but I am fucking grateful. I barricaded the door, then helped my wife store food, water, and other necessities into the shelter. Just as we were finishing up, I heard a window smash and the inhuman roar of these things as the entered my home.

“Let’s go! Get in now!” I shouted to my wife in a panic.

“Hang on, I think I forgot the radio!” she exclaimed.

“There’s a spare one downstairs, let’s go!” I retorted, but it was too late. Two seconds after I finished my sentence, they pounced on her. Her skin was stripped off the bone as their razor sharp boney hands ripped her to shreds. They then preceded to drink her blood. I ran into the shelter and locked it. Luckily, the shelter only has one handle and it’s on the inside of the door. We had to use a crowbar to open it from the outside. These things were smart, but not smart enough to figure that out.

I was in the shelter for two weeks. They left after my wife was killed. The radio said that most of these things have left the country, but I can’t be too sure. I haven’t been outside of my house since I left the shelter. I haven’t seen one of those hell spawns in forever. So, maybe they really are gone. Maybe it is safe to go out regularly. Maybe that smashed window I heard just now was a figment of my imagination. Maybe that raspy voice, which sounded a bit like my wife, calling my name wasn’t real. Maybe…