Thank you for hosting a bit about RecruitZ! I’m so excited to be here and to be able to talk a little bit about zombies. I’m always amazed at how people say the zombie craze is going away and then another hit show or blockbuster movie comes out to disprove that point!
I think part of our obsession with zombies is because so many of us know deep down that a scary outbreak of some sort has happened in the past and can happen again. These creatures kind of embody that fear and take it one step beyond. If a person spends any amount of time on the History Channel or Military channel, it becomes evident fairly quickly that media also loves to scare us to death with reenactments of what an outbreak could do to us as a society. Eeek! It’s just some odd fascination that is hard to shake.
Something that I think fuels our infatuation is the idea of being able to survive, overcome, and rebuild. I think that notion is at the heart of most real life stories—surviving and/or overcoming obstacles, no matter how mundane, which is why I wanted to build a story that captured life after the outbreak was contained.
I have absolutely loved building the Afterworld and look forward to where Rebekah and Preston’s adventures take them in books two and three. RecruitZ was a blast to write and AlibiZ is proving to be just as fun!
Anyway, thanks for listening to me about zombies and the Afterworld!!
“We can’t run. They’d totally get us before we got away,” I said, hoping he’d correct me, tell me that we had a chance.
He slammed his fist into the steering wheel and looked over at me. When the outbreak happened, we never looked back. We were always on the move, running from the disease that took our families and friends. That was the key to survival. Never stay in one place. Always stay on the move. Now we had nowhere to move. I glanced over at Gavin and saw the fear in his eyes. Even with everything we’d encountered, his eyes had never held this amount of terror.
“Babe, whatever happens…”
“Knock it off,” I said.
“We have nothing to fight them with, and a horde this size needs a distraction.”
“Don’t you dare,” I hissed, shaking my head. The fear was pulsing through me at an unstoppable rate. “We didn’t live through the outbreak to die now.”
I gritted my teeth, grabbed the civilian anti-zombie kit from under my seat, unzipped it, and looked for anything inside that might help. We were instructed to drop these kits off at government collection stations. I was grateful we never got around to it.
Gavin held down the ignition and reverse buttons at the same time in a vain attempt to override the safety sensors.
“Damn it,” he muttered.
“Try rebooting the car. Turn it off and take the key out. Give it a few seconds and slip the key back in. Maybe if you pop it in reverse before the car can sense the zombies, it’ll let us reverse,” I directed.
He nodded, biting his lip, and turned off the engine allowing the moans of the horde outside to be heard. I took a deep breath and looked out my window that was now completely blocked by tattered shirts and non-oozing wounds pressed against the glass. It would only be a matter of time before they began to break through the glass. The moans turned into a chorus of humming.
“One-Mississippi-two…” Gavin’s words wrapped around me.
I prayed silently to the same God I’d prayed to many nights before. He listened then and I hoped he’d listen now.
I grabbed two knives that were in the kit and flipped the blades open, locking them in place. The anodized orange handles were larger than the actual blades. Not comforting. I handed one to Gavin.
“There’s still a Louisville Slugger on the floor behind us,” Gavin said. His brown hair was cut short. That was one of the first things he did after we were vaccinated. A haircut and a shave to celebrate our survival. He still looked young but not as young as we both did before the outbreak.
I slid toward the center console, crawling as far from the passenger window as I could get. Gavin’s breathing was heavy, and I felt the heat rolling off him as he continued to struggle with what we were facing.
I dug around in the bottom of the bag for the zombie deterrent. My hand clasped around the ADD, also known as the Audible Distraction Device, and I dropped the kit to the floor.
The car rocked back and forth as the number of beasts grew on both sides, creating a trance-like rhythm that was terrifying.
“Grab the bat,” Gavin instructed, his voice low.