Zombie Apocalypse Jodi's Story
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Here's mine. Might be a short season. Smile

Jodi's Story - Season 1
Episode 1 - A Bridge Too Far
Episode 2 - An Apocalypse on the Apocalypse
Episode 3 - Semper Fi
Episode 4 - Of Such Is the Kingdom of Heaven
Episode 5 - Barriers
Episode 6 - Dark Spear
Episode 7 - Sister's Keeper
Episode 8 - Eternal Night
Episode 9 - Conspiracy, Competition, Companion
Episode 10 - Fire and Thunder
Episode 11 - Eternal Night Redux
Episode 12 - Flame On
Episode 13 - Prayer
Episode 14 - Hunter's Lodge
Episode 15 - Pursuit
Episode 16 - Trapped
Episode 17 - Cosmic Artistry
Episode 18 - Promises to Keep
Episode 19 - Infection
Episode 20 - Costwell
Episode 21 - Hydra Code
Episode 22 - Jefferson Campground
Episode 23 - Migration
Episode 24 - An Approaching Storm
Episode 25 - The Crestfallen
Episode 26 - Screams of the Dying
Episode 27 - The Rescuers
Episode 28 - Purity of Love
Episode 29 - Sparks of Light

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EPISODE 1 - A Bridge Too Far

Negotiate with the officer at the sparsely populated airport.

Has the zombie apocalypse happened yet?

(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes

Why does Jodi need to get to the airport? Is there still a working aircraft?

(Unlikely | 2[d10]) No

Is there shelter?

(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes +Twist: NPC / Appears

Ill female clergy

It sounds like this NPC's shelter is overrun?

(Somewhat Likely | 5[d10]) Yes, but...

Rubble-strewn power plant

Here's the protagonist and scene: 
It's middle of September. Jodi is a fitness instructor and a young mother. She's been big into fitness and is quite athletic, having jogged half marathons regularly a lot of her life. It's her speed and endurance that has kept her alive so far. The last few weeks she's been holed up in a Rubble strewn power plant. Barbara Trevina is a female clergy who has been on the run with Jodi for some months now, but Barbara has recently fallen ill.

Is Barbara mobile?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

It's mid morning when the trip-wire alarm goes off and a small bell rings the arrival of unwanted attention. Jodi has a plastic water bottle up to Barabara's lips, trying to hydrate her. Her hands start to shake when she hears the moaning in the distance, spilling water on her friend.

"We need to get out of here." She tries to help Barbara up, but the woman swoons and collapses after a couple of steps.

"Can't... " Barabara breaths heavily and waves Jodi off. "Don't wait for me. Get out now!"

"I won't leave you!"

"You don't have a choice!"

"I can carry you."

"Where's the sense in that. Then we'll just both die." She coughs and blood flecks her lips.

"But where can I go?"

The power plant had been a good shelter precisely because it was remote. But now a herd was walking their way.

"The airport."

"The airport north of here? Aren't there... walkers there?"

"I don't know. Maybe now there are. But soldiers had come through there and cleaned it all out before my group took up residence. I started from there in fact. It's a good place. Shelter. Emergency food. There's a man in charge. A police officer Sam Morgan. He's fair. Tell him you knew me. He'll let you stay."

"But why did you leave?"

She coughs again, this time louder as the groans get closer. "I had to. My daughter. Had to find--" The coughing fit brings out a sheen of sweat all over her face and she starts to tremble.

"Daughter? You never mentioned--"

"No, I didn't. Because I don't like talking about it. I found her alright about a month before I met you. But she was dead. Tied to a chair, brutalized. It was--" she shook her head weakly. "It wasn't the walkers! Here. Take this--" She shoves pocket New Testament into Jodi's hands.

"Go!"

"But--" Jodi absently shoves the book into her bag.

"Now!"

Bending down, she kisses the woman on her head. "But they'll get you."

Does Jodi or Barbara have a gun?

(Somewhat Likely | 7[d10]) Yes

Both?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

Jodi?

(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and... +Twist: NPC / Appears

Is the NPC a Walker?

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

The zed hears Barabara cough and starts climbing the metal steps to their hideout.

"I have this," Barbara says, pulling out a six shooter, and a box of ammo. "Don't worry, I'll save one round for myself."

"I thought you said suicide was a sin."

"It's not suicide when you want desperately to live but even more desperately don't want to get eaten alive."

"Barbara, thank you for everything--"

"Go! Now!" Another coughing fit. "Go with God."

"You still believe, don't you?" Jodi says, amazed.

"Always." Barabara gives a weak smile. "Always and to the very end. I'll endure to the end. It's the quest of life. That enduring might mean struggling to believe at times, but I'll always continue to choose to believe."

The door rattles as the walker slams into it, and more moans are heard at the bottom of the stairs in the rubble-strewn yard as they're attracted to the noise. The wood 2x4s that barricaded the door shook. Jodi wondered if she could help defend this place from the walkers, but a good dozen of them started moaning. If she didn't go now, she'd never get out alive.

The door cracked on it's hinges and Jodi suddenly grabbed her bag, a large wrench-- her only weapon-- and giving Barabara a farewell look, ran down a walkway and then down some stairs on the opposite end of the plant's floor.

In about three minutes she heard the first gun shot. She ran out of the gravel yard, knowing that the zeds would be attracted to the noise like moths to a flame. Then there were more shots, a fourth, a fifth, a sixth. Then there was silence as she jogged away from the power plant, north in the direction of the airport.

Is it more than a day's journey away?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

If she moved quickly, not taking a lot of breaks she could reach the airport by nightfall. Does she have a map of the area?

(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes

She pulls out the worn map, splotches of pale red, mar part of its pages, but it had proved invaluable. She studied it for a moment, trying to memorize the route she needed to take. The route she decided to take would take her mostly through an industrial and warehouse section of the city. One section of the route would pass through a residential section, but she feared too many people would cause an extra risk. Better to avoid other scavengers or walkers if she could. She'd try and skirt the residential section by passing through a large city park and then cutting across a bridge out of to the east taking her out of the city before heading north again along the highway.

She moves along the sparsely populated road and grows increasingly concerned as the number of abandoned and burned out cars begins to increase.

Does she make it to the park without getting spotted?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Amazingly, she makes it to the park without getting spotted and the park seems to be empty. She takes some time and finds a stout branch she could use as a club if needed and sets off down an overgrown gravel trail. It's about mid day and she's growing a little hungry. To her left the river flows wide, placid, and deep. The bridge is the most sensible means of crossing it if she wants to stay dry. September leaves fall lazily into it's green depths. It seems almost idyllic. She sits on a rock overlooking the bridge and starts a meal of some canned spam.

Does she make it through her meal undisturbed?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 6[d10]) No, but...

She has half the contents in the meal when she notices something.

Morbidly obese zombie

A hulking zombie... this one could have benefited from my Rumba fitness class, Jodi thinks as she shoves one last bite of spam into her mouth and shoves the rest of the can back into her bag.

Does it notice her?

(50/50 | 3[d10]) No

Is it just standing there?

(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes

She begins to move quietly past it, stealthily hoping it won't hear her and begins angling off in the direction of the bridge.

Does it notice her?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 5[d10]) No

It stands there in a stupor, gray skin splayed and open, flesh raw and crawling with maggots that hang and drop from a wound in its gut that sags from it's large skeletal frame. She thinks... well hopes she'd be able to outrun it easily should it make a move towards her. She moves towards the bridge, getting around the zombie.

Does she make it to the bridge without encountering other issues?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 9[d10]) Yes

She draws near the tree line where the greenery meets once more with the urban jungle beyond it. She studies the bridge?
Does it appear clear?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

The bridge is busted. It's a large concrete bridge, but a good portion of it is clogging the river below it, a full-on military tank is on its side atop the rubble in the river. Water flows around the tank, only coming up midway up its side. Jodi cusses and studies the bridge trying to see if it's near enough to jump across?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 2[d10]) No

She walks up to the gap in a crouch trying to stay low from any prying eyes and studies the gap. Rusty rebarb juts out like skeletal fingers as the noon sun beats down from a cloudless sky. She shakes her head. It's too far! Too bad I didn't go into long jump. But no, it was always track, always cross country. Runners high and lately the Rumba class. She listens making sure she's alone. 

Is she?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

Survivors?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

They have a vehicle. That could be bad. The noise itself would be bad. She runs back across the bridge the way she came and moves back into the treeline. 
Do they appear to be fleeing something?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes, but they don't notice the bridge is out. What are they fleeing from? Zeds?

(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No

Gangsters?

(Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

Are the gangsters on motor bikes?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but... +Twist: PC / Alters the location

Does the station wagon go over the edge?

Jodi decides not to stick around. They're attacked to the fleeing station wagon. She would use that as a distraction and try her luck finding another way across the river.

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

She jogs further back into the forest, then turns and sees through the trees that the car careens over the end. One person who rolls out of the vehicle before it goes over the edge.
Does it explode?

(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...

It goes over the edge and slams down on top of the tank, crumpling it's undercarriage atop it and smashing up the front pretty good. For a moment, Jodi can hear nothing but the cries of gulls then she hears the groans of the wounded still in the vehicle before the gangsters arrive on their loud motor bikes. She turns upriver, going back the same way towards the --- morbidly obese zombie who is attracted to the noise. Jodi tries to hide before it can spot her. Is she successful?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 5[d10]) No

The crack of brush underfoot as she attempts to find a place to hide, only attracts it. It moans and comes closer. Janet takes off and starts running, easily outdistancing it. It starts to follow. All the noise up and around the the bridge was bound to attract more attention from walkers. She runs until she loses sight of the zombie then cuts off down toward the river. She quickly wraps her dry clothes and perishable food inside her poncho trying to make it as waterproof as possible and then studies the far bank. 

Does she see notice anything unusual?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

She can see motion through the trees on the other side. More zeds, but they aren't interested in her. They're moving toward the ruckus on the bridge but on the other side--west side--of the bank. Some zeds in fact enter the water and walk under the water until the current carries them onward. Jodi frowns. What if there are walkers in the water now, just sitting there, waiting like a sting ray for some unlucky swimmer? But she had to get across, and zeds would be coming to all that noise by the bridge. She waited another moment and started to hear the sound of the obese one in the distance lumbering in the direction she had been going.

Does the MOZ (Morbidly Obese Zed) notice the other zeds and start to move in her direction?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 4[d10]) No +Twist: Physical event / Hinders the hero

Jodi moves into the water. It's cold, despite the sunny day. Deep water usually is, she thinks as she starts to swim across, pushing with her legs in a back stroke. She holds her pack on her chest trying not to get it wet. The temperature wasn't very threatening by itself just uncomfortable. But she knew that the wind would make it only colder when she emerged on the the other side. 

Does she make it across unhindered by zeds?

(Very Likely | 7[d10]) Yes

The zeds have moved off by the time she reaches the other side attracted by the noise. She's winded... and freezing. Not literally. She knew it wasn't cold enough--at least during the day to die from exposure. But that didn't stop her teeth from chattering when the wind knifed into her. Maybe swimming in her clothes and tennis shoes wasn't the brightest idea. But she had wanted to be above to move quickly if she needed to and pulling on clothes, even had they remained dry in the crossing, would have delayed her. Her shoes of course give an awful squelching sound every time she moves. That and the chattering noise her teeth were making moving silently more difficult. She had left her club behind. The wrench was a heavy weight inside her pack. She crouched on the other side, listening for any walkers feeling the wind cut through her wet clothing. She looked down the river at the tank and the station wagon atop it.

Were there any survivors there in the car?

(Unlikely | 9[d10]) Yes

Did the gangsters take off?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

The survivors are still in the car and the gangsters are lined up on the bridge, pistols out in a shooting line, making a game of it. Whenever one of the wounded survivors tries to get out of the car, they shoot nearby, forcing them back into the vehicle. And along the bank she sees a few zeds moving closer to the sounds of shooting. Towards the crying of the wounded in the vehicle.

Teeth chattering, she decides there's nothing she can do except wait and see if the gangsters move off somehow.
Are zeds approaching the gangsters from their--east--side?

(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Enough to make them run off?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 2[d10]) No

A few zeds make an appearance, including the fat one that had been chasing Jodi. They rush to the bikers but are easily brought down by a combination of pistol shots and crowbars and bats to the head. In the ruckus, the survivors from the car wreck try to leave. Do they make it to the far bank?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 5[d10]) No

One of them, a man in his thirties, is swept downstream by the current going under and spluttering up later. Another a woman, a girlfriend or wife screams his name after him. She backs up holding one arm tightly against her chest as zeds start to move into the water towards them. Jodi realizes the woman can't swim with that arm. The zeds get closer. 

The gangsters on the bridge push a body over the edge. It is the survivor that jumped out of the car. They had killed. The body lands atop the station wagon. It's still for now. But all are infected. When you die... no matter how you die, you turn.

The woman has nowhere to go. Zombies are moving into the water from the west bank. On the east, the gangsters are laughing it up, betting cigarettes and booze on what's going to happen.

The woman's husband tries to swim with the current at an angle to make it to the west bank, further north.

Does he succeed?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

The man sputters and coughs as he swims but manages to stay afloat, even though the current picks up in speed as the elevation drops further north. The man swims sensibly, though, keeping his head above water. Soon he's lost from sight as he goes around a bend.

His wife, by the station wagon is crying, cradling a ruined arm close to her chest. Another body lies slumped against the steering wheel. The woman tries to edge away from the dead body lying atop the station wagon, a body that was likely one of their number. 
Does the one on the top reanimate?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes and so does the one inside the car! The one in the car starts to smash it's head against driver's window, but it doesn't have the intelligence to manipulate handles nor the seat belt release. But it presses its body against the steering wheel, and the horn goes off repeatedly.

The walker atop the car reaches out and grabs at the woman.

Success?

(Somewhat Likely | 1[d10]) No, and...

No, it tries to crab her with both hands in a tackle, mouth open wide, but she ducks and body checks it, sending it into the drink. Arms flail for a moment and then it's pulled under the current and also goes around the bend. Most of the gangsters laugh and hoot and cheer, even those who lost their bets, grin and continue to watch the unfolding action.

Jodi also watches, somehow caught up in this visceral drama of life and death. The zeds that were on the west bank are now chest deep in the water, struggling against the current and reaching out to gain purchase on the rubble to reach the victim struggling for her life.

Do any of them climb up the rubble against the current?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 8[d10]) Yes +Twist: Organization / Helps the hero

Is Jodi noticed by this organization? After all, she's crouching in the trees?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 3[d10]) No

Okay, so I'll interpret this as an organization helps the woman on the car then.
Who is it? 
I use the MAG button. I see some symbols, a gun, a man hands together, monk like, a hooded figure and a diving bird. To me this screams vigilante justice in the form of a surprise attack. Other symbols show a volcano and electricity. A shocking and violent attack then.

A figure, dressed in a hood and body armor detaches itself from the rubble behind the half dozen gangsters. He raises an assault rifle and rakes the gangsters, the clip spent, he tosses a grenade into the mix.
The gangsters are surprised by a sudden and brutal attack, most are sitting with their backs to a man, watching the zombies start to climb the rubble.

Does he take out all the gangsters?

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes, and he also dispatches the zeds in the river on and around the rubble with practiced ease.

Jodi watches dumbfounded as the gangsters are suddenly felled by this unknown assailant. Jodi instinctively dives onto her stomach as the powerful shots ring out. The gangsters are quickly felled with two shots to each torso. Those that dive for guns are taken by the grenade. The gangsters dealt with, the man runs to the edge of the bridge, takes a knee, and removes the undead threat around the rubble in the river. He makes an angled shot and takes out the one making a ruckus in the car.

Do any gangster bodies reanimate while he does this?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

He then takes a knife to each dead gangster, putting a permanent end to them. 

The woman near the station wagon, falls to her knees in relief, weeping.

Jodi lets out a deep shuddering breath.

Any zeds attracted to the noise. I'm going to say Unlikely since a group of them were already attracted to the first gunfire and dealt with.

(Unlikely | 4[d10]) No

Does the man help the woman further?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

The strange and mysterious rescuer, ignores the woman. He kneels quickly by each gangster going through each corpse, his head moves as if scanning every street. Once he finishes gathering items, he disappears as mysteriously as he came, quietly retreating into an alleyway. All is eerily silent save for the gurgle of the river, the quietly crying woman and the keening of the biting wind through the worried streets.

You should just leave. But the woman is all alone now and wouldn't last long without help. Plus there might be supplies in the station wagon.
Jodi stands up and calls quietly to the woman. 
"It's all right. I want to help."

She wades into the river and climbs atop the rubble. 
The woman backs up, eyes scanning for a way to escape. 

"I'm not going to hurt you. See?" Jodi keeps her hands away from the wrench tucked in her belt. "I want to help."

Does the woman grow trustful?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

"Who are you?" she asks.
"I'm Jodi. And you?" [I use fakepersongenerator.com and come up with Millie Nikola] 
"Millie," The woman answers. She's of slight build, hispanic decent, in her mid thirties. Millie sinks down into a sitting position, her back against the side of the car and stares out at the river.
"Look, we should go. I'll try to help you as best I can. I know a safe place. The airport."
"Airport?" She says absently, "But my friends. My husband--"
"He's probably fine, I'm sure. You're friends on the other hand..." Jodi shakes her head eyeing the dead zed in the car. "Hey by the way pushing that one over the edge into the river. It looked like he--"
"He was my brother." Millie says quietly.
Jodi feels like she'd been sucker punched and stared at the dead zed in the driver seat and the red smeared on the windshield from the bullet wound. 
"Hey, I'm sorry," Jodi says, "Look, I didn't know and--"
"We've all lost someone," Millie says, brushing a hand over her eyes but there's a tremor in her voice.
"Where were you headed?"
"We were just driving through town. Not many working vehicles these days, but Tony, my husband, he's a great mechanic and-- Well, that doesn't matter. We were driving south, looking for supplies. My brother was sick with the flu. The last group we were with thought he was infected and pulled guns on us. Made us leave. We were trying to find supplies when the gangsters suddenly appeared. They took our medicine and then threatened to kill us if we didn't leave. They chased us here. I guess they new about the bridge. We didn't."
Jodi looked at the silent street and felt the wind bite into her again.
"Look, why don't you come with me. I'll try to help you find her your husband. I saw him go around the bend. It looks like he knew how to swim."
"Why would you help me?"
Jodi shrugged. "Karma, I guess."
"Karma," the woman gave a slow smile. "Not a lot of people believe in that anymore these days." 
"Well, it's something a friend of mine would do. She died this morning." Jodi bent down and investigated the woman's wound. "Broken?"

(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

The woman nods her head and winces in pain as Jodi probes the bone.
"You a nurse or doctor?"
"Nope. Was just a mom."
"Was?" Millie says, a question in her voice.
"Was. Let's not talk about it."
"I was a mom," Millie says. "My baby died in child birth before all of this. My husband couldn't bear to have another so we just got dogs."
"Dogs are nice," Jodi says. "Unless they're the kind that bite."
"Everything bites now," Millie says.

Jodi sets the bone and binds it up. Does she do a reasonable job?

(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No

Millie winces in pain, biting her lip so she doesn't cry out.
"Shoot," Jodi says. "That's not right. But it's the best I can do. Come on."

They gather up supplies and leave. Is there a weapon in the car?

(Somewhat Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

A firearm?

(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...

The car is starting to shift off the tank. They'll need to be quick. What three things do they find that might be useful?

Very high quality kerosene

Damaged gas mask

Kerosene

With a scraping sound the station wagon rolls off the tank and then into the river on the north side with a huge splash. They were able to pull out some fuel and a damaged gas mask. Jodi shoves the fuel in her bag but leaves the gas mask after determining the seals are no good. The duo move off together west-ward across the river and up the bank of the other side.
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#2
Hey, nice story. Well done.
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#3
Thanks! And here's...

EPISODE 2 - An Apocalypse on the Apocalypse

It's mid afternoon, Jodi and Millie have searched the river bank for two hours with no sign of Millie's husband.

Is Millie slowing up because of pain and her arm?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No +Twist: NPC / Appears

"We've been searching for hours," Jodi says, wiping sweat from her forehead. "We need to find shelter before it's dark."

"We have to find him!" Millie says. She winces through the pain, and Jodi is both surprised and disturbed. She's gonna get me killed!

"This is becoming too dangerous," Jodi says. "There are bound to be walkers out here."

"No, he is my husband! And I'm going to keep looking."

"And what if he's dead? Will you kill yourself and me in a fruitless search to find a corpse? Or worse?"

"You didn't have to come," Millie says. "I'll find him on my own if you don't want to help."

"With that arm of yours?" Jodi shakes drinks some more water from her bottle. She had filled up the other water bottles they'd used with river water. She'd have to boil it later to get fresh water.

"I don't need my arm to find him. I need my legs and my eyes."

"You are one stubborn woman."

"Tony could have told you that."

"Alright look, I'll help you for another hour, but after that, we must get shelter before--" Jodi cuts off as something rustles through the brush.

Is it Millie's husband?

(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes

Is he alright?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

Is he hurt?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

But it's not bad. He's not been bit or scratched.

Concussion?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Does he remember his wife?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 7[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes, but only long term memory, like two years ago and later.

"Millie? Millie is that you," He cusses and leans against a tree holding his head. "Where are we?"

"Tony!" Millie runs up to him and hugs him.

"Your arm," he mutters looking her over. "It's broken?"

"Yes, the crash you know."

"Crash?"

"The car. On the bridge."

"Car..." he stands up and stares at the sun, blinking, holding his head in both hands. "What car?"

"Tony!" she's becoming agitated. "Don't you remember the car? The bikers? The tank?"

"What are you talking about? Where are we?" He asks again, faltering a bit as a wave of dizziness hits.

"You can't remember?"

He shakes his head and crumples into a sitting position, cradling his head between his arms on his knees.

"You have a head injury," Jodi says, pointing at the blood marring his face.

"What are we doing here?" Tony asks.

"We were looking for supplies, Tony," Minnie says. "Querido, you don't remember nothing?"

"I remember going to our baby's funeral," he whispers. "That was yesterday wasn't it?"

Millie kneels next to him and touches his face. "No, husband. That was two years ago."

He pushes her hand away, angry. "Two years! No!"

Does all this arguing attract unwanted attention?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

"Great," Jodi mutters to herself. "A woman with a broken arm and now a man who can't remember anything about anything." She strides over to them and crouches by them. "Look, as interesting as this conversation is, we must find shelter!" Jodi interjects. "And quickly, before nightfall."

"Yes," Millie says nodding her head. "We've found Tony. We can go look for shelter."

"Shelter?" Tony says, "Millie who is this? And if we want shelter, why not go to the city? Even better, find the hospital. My head hurts like a hammer took to it."

"She's a friend and," she swallows. "There's too much to tell right now, but remember all those zombie movies I used to like when we were dating."

"Yeah, you were loco about those," Tony chuckles. "But what does that have to do with anything?"

Millie looks at Jodi as if asking her for help explaining. Jodi throws up her hands. "Don't look at me, he's your husband. You deal with him!"

"Deal with me? Look!" he struggles to his feet, wavering. "I don't know who you are, but, I won't let you talk to her like that!"

"It's okay. Sit. Sit dear. Sit."

He wavers and crumples again.

"Heavens above! No, don't sit, you idiot. We have to get moving! And we have to be quiet. They could be out there hunting us."

"Is this some kind of bad dream?" Tony asks holding his head again. "Hunted?"

"Bad dream? You could say that," Jodi says biting the sarcasm at him. "Look, let's just say those movies Millie used to like watching... about people chewing each others faces off?"

"What about them? Stupid movies. I always told her not to watch that crap."

"We'll, you're a star of the show. We all are. A cast of three against a city of 800 thousand hungry monsters."

"You're not making any sense," Tony says.

"And you're going to get us killed! You try explaining it to him."

"It's too much." Millie says.

"Don't talk to me like a child!" Tony shouts. "Spit it out!"

Any zeds show up?

(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No

"It's all gone, Tony." Millie touches his arm and wipes his hair away from the wound on his head. "We can't go to the city. We can't go to the hospital to help your head. It's overrun by gangs and by the dead."

"The dead? What happened to the city? Some kind of disease?"

"The very worst kind," Jodi says. "And it's catching in a bad way. All those dead... all those dead are monsters. Walkers, we call them."

"Huh?"

"Perhaps if he sees them," Millie suggests trying to be helpful.

"Oh now that's a brilliant idea," Jodi says, running a hand through her stringy hair. "We aren't going to go out looking for them! THEY are looking for US, remember?"

"Who is?" Toni asks again.

Jodi strides over to him, all Christian benevolence gone. "Her brother, your brother in law was killed! Shot! Then they pushed him off the bridge nearly on top of her. Then he tried to bite her head off because he became one of them! You fell in the river, and I guess you hit your head on a rock or two or three, but all that doesn't matter now. What matters is we HAVE to get to shelter and have to do it now, or we WILL die!" She bites off each word in his face and he finally seems to gain some measure of the gravity of the situation.

He slowly nods and whispers. "This is all crazy talk, you know that, right?... You're all loco. But okay. Suppose you are right?"

"There's no supposing. On your feet and follow me."

"You can lean on me," Millie says pulling her husband to her feet. "She's a friend. She'll help us."

"I'm only one person, and I don't make any promises," Jodi says. "Just be quiet from now on and we'll try to get through this night. Whispers only, especially as we head west into the industrial sector. We'll try to find a warehouse or something to hold up in. After that, we'll head to the airport. My friend says they have good shelter there. A safe place."

"We'll figure it out," Millie suggests, patting her husbands arm. "Dear, grab that big branch there. We might need it. But you have to hit them on the head. And only the head and don't let them bite you. Whatever you do... don't let them do that. And don't die." She adds as an after thought and kisses him on the cheek.

"Crazy talk," Tony mutters, but to his credit he picks up a big branch in his muscular arms. "It's a good walking stick at least."

"It is that," Jodi says, wishing for the umpteenth time that she had the upper body strength of a man to wield that large branch. But when the zeds came a crawlin' he'd wish he had the legs of a marathon runner. She shakes her head. "Let's go," Jodi says, and leads the way toward the industrial sector.

---

In the late afternoon sun, trash blows fitfully across cracked concrete and potholed streets. The streets of the industrial sector are littered with rubble and dead cars. Warehouses and industrial facilities for various businesses line the streets. A semi carrying a large cargo container lays on it's side, the cab has smashed through the side of a brick warehouse. The dark windows and doors seem to yawn at them as they walk down the street, bespeaking the lifeless end that has befallen mankind.

Any zeds strolling the streets in this industrial sector? (I'm ruling 'somewhat unlikely' because it's not a widely populated sector and it was close to the bridge in the previous episode and probably any zeds nearby would have been pulled off toward the bridge already).

(Somewhat Unlikely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes and they're feasting on something...

"Get back!" Jodi holds out her arm, and they move their backs against the walls of one of the buildings of the alley way they were coming out of. Jodi peers out onto the street around the corner.

How many zeds? More than three?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 1[d10]) No, and... +Twist: Item / Ends the scene

"This place really is messed up," Tony says, looking around at the wreckage and nudging a half decomposed corpse at his foot with his boot. "You know that, right? Dang! Where's it's head?"

"That's the other way to deal with them," Millie says tonelessly turning away.

"You want to see them Tony? Now's your chance," Jodi tugs Tony to the corner of the building and points out the feasting zeds some hundred yards away. Three of them are hunched over something, shoveling flesh from a half torn horse into their bloody maws.

Tony stares dumfounded and the color drains from his face. He starts to curse in Spanish while being interrupted by dry heaves.

"Quiet!" Jodi hisses, pulling him back around the corner and shoving him against the wall. She puts her hand over his mouth as he makes wretching noises. Thankfully nothing comes up but some foul smelling bile. Jodi shakes it off her hand, wiping it on the front of his shirt. Then she grabs the front of shirt in both hands and wipes off his face. "Now you know, right? And that's nothing! When they have a feeding frenzy on live humans... on kids...on... babies," she whispers and her voice catches. "That's when you have license to puke, got that? That over there? That was nothing!" She felt a little guilty bringing him up to speed in that way, but better to be armed with knowledge earlier than too late. At least now he was a believer. That was the main thing.

Tony takes deep shuddering breaths and eventually nods in between random prayers and curses. Millie stands next to him speaking softly trying to calm him down.

That's when they heard it a low chugging sound followed by a whine as a chopper flew low overhead down the main street and then veers off to the east across the river, flying low over the city. The three zeds attracted by the noise, shove the last bits of nibs into their faces and move off after the noise.

"That was lucky," Millie says.

"Not if it drew more this way from the west," Jodi says peering into the sun, shielding her eyes.

"Was that the military?" Millie asks excited.

"Don't know. But they didn't stop, whoever they were," Jodi answers, "Okay. Let's go. That building there," she points to the warehouse with the wall that has a semi half stabbing through it. "We'll check out the vehicle and if it's safe, we'll hold up there for the night."
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#4
Episode 3 - Semper Fi

The sounds of the chopper fades away to the east. The trio cautiously study the warehouse with the 18 wheeler crunched up against it. Millie hovers behind her husband, with every step her face twinges with pain from her broken arm. Jodi pulls out her wrench and studies the semi truck. 
Is the container already open?

(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

She listens as she stares into the black hole of the container. 
Does she hear anything?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes and it's upset...
Zed?

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and... +Twist: Emotional event / Changes the goal

"What is that sound?" Tony whispers behind her.

There was a rasping whimpering sort of sound.

"I think it's a--" Jodi stepped backward as a small form, a girl of perhaps five or six years of age, emerged from the darkness to the edge of the container, stumbling across an overturned barrel. Her white dress is ragged and torn, revealing skinned knees. Long strands of matted greasy hair, mixed with dirt, grime, and detritus hang over her face obscuring it.

"Amy?" Jodi whispers in disbelief. What is she doing here? Her mind reels and she taks a step towards the girl. But the girl isn't Amy. She couldn't be. She knows it, but was hard to fight the image that her mind conjures. A young girl with an impish grin in a white dress, long brown braided hair bouncing up and down as she jumped with a jump rope on a shady summer sidewalk. Her girl.

"Oh," Millie says, her face softening also taking a step forward. "Poor thing. It's just a child, come here--"

Jodi frowns. Children shouldn't be neglected so, even if the world went to the pits. She had to help, she--

The girl suddenly hisses, and raises claw-like hands, baring long fingernails streaked with flecks of dried blood, and lunges at Millie.

Does Tony do anything?

(Unlikely | 2[d10]) No

Tony stands rooted in place, his guard down studying the poor child. He wonders where it's parents were. Where-- and suddenly Millie screams as the child monster lurched forward, hissing and clawing.

The resemblance to Amy shatters like a thousand painful shards when the thing bares its teeth, and it's then that she noticed the dress is not white, but pink from being covered in faded dried blood. She screams with Millie and brings her wrench down on the thing's head.

Does she hit it in the head?

(Somewhat Likely | 4[d10]) No, but... +Twist: NPC / Appears

Another zed?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

Human?

(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes

The small monster twists toward Jodi, claws raised, and leaps from the edge of the cargo container as the heavy wrench swooshes towards it. Jodi had aimed for it's face in a wide swing, like she used to do in high school softball, but as the small monster leaps into the air, hissing and spitting, her swing instead catches it in the chest, and hurls it back into the darkened interior of the cargo container.

Tony suddenly leaps into action and tries to close the cargo door. 

Does he close it before the child gets out?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

The door is too heavy and the rusted hinges squeak like a Banshee getting a tooth removed with rusty pliers. The hissing creature emerges on all fours scrambling towards the nearest meal--Tony. It tries to leap on his back. Does it succeed?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

Tony cries out and raises his meaty arm in a reflexive swing and backhands it onto the road.

Jodi takes another swing at its head. Hit?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes +Twist: Physical event / Hinders the hero

Jodi slams the wrench into the things head, but her foot slips on some spilled fluid with the viscosity like oil from an overturned barrel leaking from the side of the truck and Jodi goes down. 

Is Jodi injured from the fall?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 6[d10]) No, but...

No, but she's bruised and dazed the wind is knocked out of her. 

She coughs on her back and sees streaks of light behind her eyes.

Did she kill the thing?

(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No

How much damage to the zed?

(12 = 9[d20]+3) Moderate Injury: Hampers action significantly; will require first aid/medical attention.

The swing from her rench had smashed part of its face, but not enough to put it out of action. It moves more slowly now, its motor skills hampered by the head shot. The thing is disoriented and runs into the wall of the container hissing and scratching.

Does the human who appeared help?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

Who is this human?
Curious marine

...but what? Is he doing it for his own motives, or orders from someone else, whatever those are, rather than out of of altruism?

(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No

No, he is doing it because he's altruistic. In that case "but" means he uses a loud attack -- assault rifle that could attract attention.

The creature lumbers to the edge and again is about to leap on Tony, who has backed away his club in his hands held defensively, when three shots ring out.

Mr. Curious Marine aims for the head. Does he hit?

(Likely | 6[d10]) Yes, but... +Twist: NPC / Appears

The bullet puffs a red mist as it passes through the child's head, nailing the small corpse and driving it to the asphault.

Sounds like to me his loud shot is attracting more zeds?

(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No

Another marine?

(50/50 | 3[d10]) No

Gang bangers?

(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No

Hmm, must be another survivor then that shows up. Who is it?

Ill athlete

Friend of the marine?

(Likely | 3[d10]) No +Twist: Physical event / Hinders the hero

Jodi is already on the ground, lying in a spill of some sort. What is this physical event? We'll try the MAG. Multiple images but those that stand out are a goo thing, a water dropplet with something inside it, and a magnifying glass. Sounds like the stuff she's lying in is caustic and starts to itch and burn her skin as it seeps through her wet clothing.

Jodi scrambles to her feet slapping at her wet clothes and crying out in pain. "Water! I need water!"

Tony and Millie just stare at her blankly.

Is the athlete npc hostile?

(50/50 | 3[d10]) No

Helpful?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 1[d10]) No, and...

...and in fact he wants something.

Millie and Tony leap into action trying to help Jodi while the Marine jogs towards them.

A man dirty and dressed in a pair of ragged sweats, leans against the side of a building.

Ooo. Ill, but not hostile, but not helpful. Sounds like he's desperate to get help himself. Did he get bit?

(Somewhat Likely | 7[d10]) Yes +Twist: PC / Alters the location
Not sure how to make a PC alter the location. Hmmm. I'll ignore that for now.

"Help me, please..." a tall man says, he's a white man, and his face is unusually pale. He limps around a corner. He has on a pair of ragged sweat pants and a basketball jersey. His shoes are untied. One hand grips the side of his left shoulder where blood seeps through his fingers of his right hand. 

Millie and Tony turn from helping Jodi. Tony raises his club in anticipation, wary eyes going from basket ball man to the marine who is jogging up towards them, bearing his rifle in his hands. 

Jodi hops around, trying to disrobe as fast as she can, oblivious to the newcomers. "It burns!" She knows she sounds like gollum, but she can't help it. If she doesn't get it off, it really will burn her skin. However, with an unusual sense of propriety for a world that has fallen off the deep end, she hops into the container, and under cover of the darkened interior, yanks off her chemically-laden jeans and shirt.

"Hey Tony? Millie?" she calls from the darkened container.

"Yeah?" Tony says somewhat distracted by the sick athlete.

"Water!"

"Help me," the sick man in the b-ball uniform comes nearer, bright red drops of red drip on the pavement. "Help me... please."

"What happened?" Millie asks, nervously eyeing the man. He leans against the side of the cargo container, he's trembling.

"I-- I cut myself. I just need some bandages...or something." 

"Hello out there! I need my water! Now!" Jodi calls.

"Hey you! What happened?" the marine asks jogging up and asking the man without preamble and without introduction to the rest of the group. The marine's uniform smeared with dirt, grease, and sweat. He's missing a knee pad. He has much more than a five o'clock shadow and his hair is practically the definition of "shaggy". His face has a pinched haggard look with hard lines pulling at his mouth and eyes. He trains his gun on the man. "Answer me punk! How did you get messed up?"

"No man. Please. I ain't messed up. I just need-- Bandaids, man. Some just some freakin' Bandaids. Some gauze. Painkillers? Ya got painkillers? I gotta kill the pain. That's all. Stop the blood and... gotta kill the... Gotta kill..." The man is incoherent and descends into babbling and twitching, sweat pouring off his face.

The marine curses softly, and pulls the trigger, blowing out the man's brains. "Stupid Walker!"

Millie screams at the close range noise, and Tony freezes in front of his wife, the ringing in his ears won't seem to go away. He raises his branch in in two hands, ready to strike the marine. The marine backs up, keeping his gun trained now on them. 

"Did that thing get a piece of you too? Huh? Did it?" the marine asks.

"What did you just do?" Tony's face is pale but determined. "You just--- just-- murdered him!" Tony's eyes are wide, and Millie cringes under the terrible weight of that barrel pointed at them.

"What planet are you on Juan?" The marine jerks the barrel to focus on just him. "He was one of them! One of those things!"

"No, he wasn't! He was just hurt. You should have helped him. You should--"

"Helped him turn into one of those things?" the marine spat. "Where have you been? I don't think so. I helped you and your lady friend and the other one that ran off inside the container. This man wasn't just sick. He was starting to turn, believe you me. The trembling, the paleness, the shortness of breath, the fever. He had all the signs. Now answer me! Are you hurt? Did it get you?"

"You really think I'd answer that if I really had been hurt? You'd just do the same to me. I'm not stupid man." Tony says.

"Heck yeah, if you were bit or scratched and running a fever, you better bet your last can o' beans I'd drill a few rounds into your head!"

Did the helicopter attract more zeds?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

How many? A lot?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

There are zeds...but they're far away, moving from west to east, down an adjoining street, lumbering out of side streets, knocking over trash cans, moving toward the east, toward the band of survivors.

"You're crazy," Tony says, his hands still raised, but still defiant.

"Maybe, but I'm still alive," the marine says. He hears the ruckus from the east, and peering down his scope, sees the incoming walking corpses. "We got more lamebrains coming from the west! We gotta get out of here."

"We're heading to the airport," Jodi says from the interior.

She's looking for some clothes inside. Does she happen to find any?

(Unlikely | 4[d10]) No

"And get me some water! That stuff is starting to itch! Need to wash off."

The marine curses and tosses her his canteen in an underhand swing, then pulls up his gun again, and watches the zombies get closer and closer. "Look miss, I don't mean to rush you but we really need to get moving."

"Got any clothes?"

"I gotta spare set of a fatigues, but they ain't gonna fit you."

"It'll do," Jodi says. "Toss em up."

"I need those clothes," he says.

She peaks her head out. "Just hury and help me out here, okay?"

"Are we really doing this?" The marines says. "You're really going to wash and change and-- little miss, this ain't shower hour."

"Just hand me the clothes and keep them off of me, okay?"

"Fine," he grumbles and lets his gun hang by it's sling across his chest. Then yanking off his ruck sack, while eyeing the slow band of crawlers, he digs around for the fatigues and tosses them into the container. "But, you're gonna owe me."

The zeds are much closer now. He's going to try and take them out at range. He's skilled, so result of 'Likely' to nail them in the head until they're close enough that the scope gets unweildy.

He takes a knee and sights in on their heads, shooting at each lamebrain's head.

Hit? 1

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and... 

He switches targets and shoots.
Hit?

(Likely | 7[d10]) Yes

He switches targets and shoots.
Hit?

(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

With military precision, he dispatches three of them, the remaining three are much closer now, and the marine uses his iron sights beneath his scope aiming and shooting. They're moving more quickly, no longer attracted to the helicopter but to the sound of gun fire.
Does he hit?

(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes

Two more zeds are left!

Aims at the head and hits?

(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No

Are they close enough to attack the marine?

(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No

But they're close. Next time they will be! 
He aims again at the head and shoots one of them with a large gash down it's face where it's missing an eye. Does he hit?

(Somewhat Likely | 4[d10]) No, but... he doesn't get so zoned in on the kill that he doesn't see the larger picture.
...he's cautious and careful, and starts pulling back as they approach, in a crouch his gun raised, keeping the distance constant between them and him. 

"We've got to go, Ms! And I mean right now!"

Is Jodi fully changed now?

(Somewhat Likely | 5[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes, but she didn't have time to search the back of the trailer for anything useful. She leaps out of the back of the truck, dressed in too-large camo fatigues, that are rolled up around her calves, revealing her hastily-tied tennis shoes. She brandishes her wrench in both hands.

"I'm ready," Jodi says breathing. "You're such a gentleman for waiting."

"Haven't been called that in a while." He says as he backs up. "What's the plan here, Ms?"

Jodi looks around. They're in the industrial sector. Buildings stretch up around her cold and dark and sprawl fat and heavy in the cement cemetery once called a city. Does she find a building with an open door?

(Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

Is it a warehouse?

(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No

It's a brewery!

"Over here!" She shouts pointing to a large two story brick and mortar building with metal doors that stand open. The weathered sign says "Johnston's Brewery". Jodi, followed by Millie and Tony, with the Marine playing rear-guard, runs into the darkened interior of the brewery. The two zeds are in relatively close pursuit. 

"Get inside, and lock the doors!"

Is the door damaged in some way that it can't be shut?

(Unlikely | 3[d10]) No

They run inside and as soon as the marine is inside Tony hurls his weight against the door. The two corpses moan and lean into the door from the outside. The two corpses smash into the door.

Does Tony get the door all the way closed and locked before they can get through?

(Somewhat Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

With a shout and a grunting heave of strength, Tony shoves the door shut, snapping off the zombies' fingers, leaving the zeds to paw bloody streaks on the piter door.

The marine cusses, "What is this? How do you know it's safe?"

"I don't," Jodi says, her voice sounding too loud in the silence of the enclosed space.

"Then what are we doing here?" The marine growls. "You'll get us killed!" 

"I don't think so, with all the noise the chopper made, and with you shooting up everything that moves, any walkers inside would have already been drawn out."

Is she right?

(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

The tomb-like silence seems to confirm her analysis. They can only hear their own breathing. 

Are there dead bodies inside?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

A lot?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

But what... does that mean they weren't killed by zombies?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

... and whoever killed these people was very messy about it...

"What's that smell?" Tony asks frowning looking at the door and then around at the large rectangular room. "I don't like this," he shoves his nose into his shirt sleeve, nearly retching. "The whole city smells dead."

"Me 'shooting up everything'?" The marine says. "Look! I just saved your lives!"

"Thank you," she says, somewhat absently, waiting for her eyes to adjust to the the dark. Some light slants through barred windows in the afternoon sun. Outside, the walkers continue to scrape against the door. 

"Don't they ever give up?" Tony asks, watching the door in apprehension. But the industrial dead bolt and metal door are apparently sturdy enough to hold off the few dead beats groaning outside.

"That's all I get, huh?" Mr. Semper Fi calls out. "Just a minor thank you? Because of you, I went through half a mag of ammo!"

"And you blew off a guy's face right in front of us," Tony mutters, trying to clear the still-ringing sound out of his ears.

"You didn't have to help," she says absently. Her eyes wander over the macabre combination of the innards of the distilling cylinders and dead bodies shadowed in gloom.

"Didn't have to help? You were nearly torn open when you went to give that thing a hug! Why you tryin' to hug a lamebrain? And the other guy who was bit and as soon as he turned, he was gonna gobble your face off!" He cusses again, "I save your life and I don't even get so much as a 'How do you do?' or 'Howdy what's your name?' Well, nevermind! I'll save you the trouble. Name is Ron. So, now you can politely say, 'Why, thank you Ron for saving my little backside! And--'"

"I was thinking of...Amy," she says, ignoring his tirade her eyes beginning to adjust to the darkness. 

"Amy?" he pauses sensing the emotion behind her voice.

"My daughter. She--" Then her eyes find the bodies, and she sits down heavily in a corner of the room, pulling her knees up around her chest and hugging them slowy rocking back and forth. 

"No. Please no. no...."

He kneels down by one of the bodies and looks at it, notices the spray of blood behind it, and scans the other bodies, and lets out a deep sigh pregnant with sorrow...
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#5
Episode 4 - Of Such Is The Kingdom of Heaven

The bodies are the small twisted forms of children. Small children. Kindergarteners. 

Jodi's moans turn to cries of anger and rage and she throws her wrench against one of the copper clyinders. It clangs. "Amy... no.... Amy..."

"What happened to her?" Tony asks, but then he too see's the bodies. "Santa Madre..." he whispers and wretches.

Ron stands silent and cold, bile threatening the back of his throat even as a feeling of dark numbness threatens to overtake his humanity. 

"Who did this?" Millie stumbles near Jodi, and wraps her good arm around Jodi trying to comfort her.

Were they killed in the last day or so?

(Unlikely | 4[d10]) No

Ron brushes his hand against the blood on the cold concrete. Dried blood that comes away in rust-colored flakes when he peels at it with his fingernail. The bile rises again in this throat and he chokes it back swallowing hard. He curses hard and bitterly and bows his head. 

Was he in some way connected with this?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Tony wipes his mouth. "They're children... just children."

He sees an imprint of a boot in the blood dried there. The same kind of boot the military wear and sees the boots. He fingers some of the brass casings that lie scattered about the room and shoots a scathing look at Ron. 

"The army!" he points an accusing finger at Ron. "He did it!"

Is Jodi still raving and sobbing?

(Likely | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

...but she's slowly re-gathering her wits though at the moment she's not paying much heed to the others, her thoughts on her own daughter Amy.

Ron remains kneeling over the still form, his head bowed as if in admission of guilt.

"Look at his boots! The same tread here in the blood! Look at the bullets in his big gun! The same bullets that killed the man outside took these children in here. You can see it on his face!" Tony picks up his branch his knuckles white as his grip tightens about it.

Ron's head is still bowed over the child's form, apparently heedless of Tony's growing anger. His voice is quiet. "I was part of an evacuation unit sent in to help bring people out. Things turned south and our platoon was mauled real bad. The locals started shooting at us. Those things started chasing us." His hand starts to shake and he clamps it down with the other.  

"It was mayhem. All cohesiveness broke down. I and a few members of my squad were separated from the rest of our platoon. We found a bus surrounded by those monsters. They were trying to get inside. Some kids from an elementary school had I guess taken shelter in there. Kids from all grades. We blew through half our ammo clearing the area around the bus and then were chased by those... things. Some of the slower larger kids couldn't keep up. We tried to help, but there were swarms of those things. Too many. We had to leave. Some of us picked up the smaller ones and ran, the others giving us covering fire. 

Ron wipes his mouth in memory still staring down at the child. "Me and six others made it to this building. Corporal Gills was rear guard. He got mauled at the door and the things pulled him off. We could hear his screams as we slammed the door and locked ourselves in. They must've dragged him away or something. There wasn't anything when we came back. That left me and five others. One of the kids, a boy was breathing funny. I dunno. He had asthma or something. Maybe, we couldn't be sure. Sarge went off his rocker and started screaming orders that didn't make any sense. He was saying it was only a matter of time that the kids were all gonna turn and we were vulnerable. He gave orders--" Ron swallows hard and bits down on his knuckles. "Orders. He gave orders to shoot the kids...I couldn't do it I didn't want to and I would never do it, and I--"

"Don't try to wiggle out of this!" Tony snarls, pacing back and forth, a few feet behind where Ron is kneeling. "Tell us the truth! You killed them, didn't you? Just like you did the sick man outside?"

"No..." Ron says quietly, his hands brushing the hair back on the face of a child where the skin has sunken like gray parchment. "No, I didn't. I couldn't. We received orders to. I--" He shakes his head defiantly. "No! The others shot. Quickly too quickly. Then sarge wanted their heads off. My finger never touched the trigger nor my knife. But it was over so soon. So quick. Over before I could do a thing!"

Does Tony believe him?
(Unlikely | 3[d10]) No


Is Tony angry enough to attack him?
(Likely | 6[d10]) Yes, but... +Twist: PC / Alters the location


Tony grips the heavy oak branch in his hand and advances on Ron, who clearly isn't paying attention; Ron's eyes are morbidly locked on the beheaded face, his hands shaking as dark memories assault him. Millie is concerned with comforting Jodi and Jodi of course is lost in her own nightmare.

Jodi suddenly shrieks and leaps to her feet, and her cry causes the others to spin towards her, breaking the tension.

"No! No more! Don't get her! Amy! I'm coming! Amy!" Jody cries, and then she runs out of the initial rectangular room deeper into the facility, slamming open a door, her shrieking cries echoing off the silent giant cylinders and endless pipework.

"Jodi!" Millie cries in alarm and wearily climbs to her feet stumbling after Jodi.

The two men are also shaken by Jodi's strange behavior and try to follow her.

Which of the two men is last? Tony?
(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No
 

Tony is about to hang back, his face still twisted with anger, but his wife nods him to follow after her instead and he obeys. That leaves Ron to bring up the rear, somberly and heavily picking up his assault rifle.

---

"Amy!" Jodi cries, as she sees the lithe form of her daughter giggle and disappear around the corner at the end of a lengthy dark hallway. 

The late afternoon presses through tall windows in the tall hallway to provides pale orange patches of rectangular sun on the walls amidst the dark shadows of the hallway. 

Closed metal doors, like dark portals, flash by on either side as her legs pump up and down. I have to get to Amy have to get to Amy have to get to Amy, she recited over and over in her mind.

Any zeds this deep in the facility that might not have been able to get outside earlier? 
(Likely | 7[d10]) Yes

Are they behind a door?
(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No +Twist: PC / Alters the location

Jodi tears around the corner, and Amy dissolves into a leering monster missing a nose and both ears. She hears the unmistakable gurgle of breath, feels its fetid breath, senses the lurching motion as the monster and more of its companions in the hallway scramble towards the sound of her running feet. 

She tries to skid to a stop and run the other way. Does she do so without falling?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 4[d10]) No

The hallway is lined with tall metal shelves with wheels, some empty, some with cans of beer, Jodi screams and tries to skids to a halt, but instead, stumbles and grabs a wheeled shelf. She pulls it with her, twisting it around into the path of the oncoming zombies, tearing her pants and skinning her knees. 

The walking corpses reach through the metal shelves that for now block the entire width of the corridor. Confused, they stumble into each other and into the barrier, and it rolls with them toward Jodi. She stays barely out of their reach, their finger nails brushing at her skin, clutching at her clothes, her hair. 

Does she hear thumping on any other doorways in the hallway?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

She tries to regain her feet and run back the other way before something bad happens. Does she?
(Somewhat Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

The walkers are momentarily confused unsure how to get around the barrier that rolls with them as they walk. Jodi scrambles to her feet just avoiding the shelf being bushed atop her. And her strong legs easily outdistance the zombies. Then, listening at a door in the hallway, and hearing nothing she leaps inside.

Do her companions see her jump in the room?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) Yes

Her companions, who chased her from the distillery into the long hallway, see Jodi duck into a room and they see a crowd of zeds moving towards them. How many are there, more than ten?
(Somewhat Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

More than a dozen zeds are moaning and clawing their way towards them.
Do the zeds move the barrier out of the way?

(50/50 | 3[d10]) No

The crowd of zeds pushes the rolling shelf unit towards them.


Do any try to follow Jodi into the room she entered?
(Likely | 5[d10]) No, but...

... but more are crowding into the hallway.

Jodi looks for a lock. Is there one?
(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes

With frantic breaths she locks the door and steps back. But she hears no sound of zombies at her door. What could have pulled them away from her? Her companions? She doesn't have time to concern herself with them though. She studies her surroundings, her brown eyes jumping from item to item. She's in an office of some manager. There's a computer, it's once whirring sound that meant civilization, productivity and instant knowledge now as silent as the grave. It's keyboard keyboard and mouse are covered in a thin layer of dust, relics of a bygone era. There's a desk littered with paperwork, pens, a white board. A filing cabinet, a small fridge and a credenza covered with books. 

Is there a window to the outside?

(Likely | 4[d10]) No

Is there any edible food in the fridge?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 7[d10]) Yes, but...
... but she's disconcerted by the human head in the fridge.... She yelps and slams it shut. Then she realizes it's completely dead. She pulls out a package of six granola bars, the peanut butter and chocolate kind, and a can of diet Coke. She throws them in her bag. If she survives, she'll eat well tonight.

Is there another door?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 8[d10]) Yes

What's behind the other door? Using MAG! Smile (I get: symbols plant, helmet, guy that looks zombieish or sewn together or spiky stuff around him, heart with computer circuits, leaf, bug, owl, bowed man exuding power, and a wedding ring on ring finger. Hmm... options.)

Jodi listens at the new door, and hearing nothing, she pulls it open. It's an equipment closet, probably a server room. There are racks along one wall with dead servers, the warmth of their lights only a distant memory now. Amidst the circuitry of the server room, a dead man is covered with flies that momentarily lift off of him at being disturbed, bugs crawl out of his mouth and nose. There's a hole in his torso where his heart has been blown out of him. Maggots drip from the wound. Blood and gore splatter the wall behind him.

This man was obviously killed somewhat recently. Perhaps by the gang that had threatened Millie, she wonders.

Is the corpse a security guard?
(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes +Twist: Physical event / Hinders the hero

The thing in the closet suddenly lurches to life, the flies buzz off of him and he opens his mouth and rotting flesh drips out.

Is he mobile?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and... +Twist: Item / Ends the scene

And then she sees it, he's tied up with barbed wire wrapped double-tight around him, and even around his jaw, closing his jaw which he tries to open. 

Does he have a weapon?
(Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

He lurches towards her and falls over. Jodi sees beneath him a fallen pistol. There's also a ring of keys at his belt. 

Jodi brains the monster quickly and efficiently, silently with her wrench, it being a distasteful yet relatively easy task considering his immobility. Then she takes the pistol and ring of keys. She wraps the latter tightly in fabric so it doesn't make noise and puts them in her pocket. She then searches his pockets and belt, and finds two mags of 17 rounds each. She removes his holster and slides it into her own belt and then holsters her new weapon. She checks the gun and the magazine. Half the rounds in the gun are missing. He must've gone down fighting before those who trussed him up with barbed wire got to him and blew his heart out.

Does he have a flashlight?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...

And the bugs and flies are getting a bit too thick. She decides not to check him or the room anymore and leaves them to their feasting. Shuts the closet door.

She then investigates the desk and filing cabinet. Anything useful?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

How many useful items? 1d6:
5 = 5[d6]

Five items then... and what are they?
Above average ammo (.50 cal)
Scrap metal
Axe
Pickaxe
Worn-out gas mask

She smiles. She struck the motherload! The guy must've made this his hideout or something. The axe and pickaxe were behind the filing cabinet. The desk held papers, a useless stapler, a stack of sticky notes and a used up gas mask. She leaves the pickaxe and gas mask and scrap metal, but adds the axe to her arsenal. 

What's been happening outside in the hallway during all this?

Did her companions take off?
(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

If her friends ran off, they could have ran back into the distillery. It didn't have any walkers. Did they perhaps barricade themselves in there? She listens. Are there shouts from her companions further off, in the direction of the distillery? And does she hear zombies are pounding on that door somewhere trying to get to them?

(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes... and... the Zeds don't notice Jodi when she opens the door, they're so intent on getting through the doors to the distillery. She can't go that way to the distillery, but she can go further down the dark hallway where she had initially been running. Perhaps there was another way she can get reunited with her companions. She cautiously steps out into the darkening hallway and moves as quietly as possible down its shadowed length.
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#6
Episode 5 - Barriers

Jodi leaves the office room. She looks left and sees the horde of zeds scrabbling at the door to the distillery. She looks right and sees the tall hallway with the splotches of shadow she'd initially gone down. She steps out into the hall, her back pressed to the cold concrete wall. She grips the wooden handle, sweating palms making the polished grain seem even more slippery. If they take one look at me, she thinks, they'll see me and I'll be their next insta-meal. She prays she's not seen and inches her way further away from them. She fights the urge to break into a run. They'd be instantly drawn to the sound of running feet.

It's now late afternoon and leaving the office is not the best of ideas. Maybe she should just leave her companions. They were the perfect distraction right now. She could find another way out. But, she couldn't. Her companions needed her. She cursed her own sense of obligation. Millie's arm was broken. Tony's memory wasn't all there. Ron was... well, Ron was probably the most capable of them all, but she hadn't been blind to Tony and Ron's altercation on the street. They didn't exactly see eye to eye.

Do the zeds notice Jodi (I'm going to say unlikely since they're distracted and not looking in her direction)?

(Unlikely | 2[d10]) No

They don't notice Jodi, and she makes it around the corner where she had initially ran into the walkers after her chase of imaginary Amy.

She remembers that there was a balcony that overlooked the distillery. Probably where managers could come out and see how the work was progressing. She had to try and make it to that balcony. Of course, her companions might not be there. If they had any sense, they would've made their way past the two that were at the outer door and back into the street to find a different place. This one was now officially over-run.

Once around the corner, she peered down the hallway. 

Does she see stairs leading up to the next floor?
(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but... +Event: Expose / New ideas

She see's something that exposes some new ideas what is it? I'll use MAG. The images are: gun emplacement, water wave, spear and shield, cthulhu, whirlwind, dark energy, arrow/spear, rotary cutter, and a pill
Initial thoughts come from the wind and wave. 

A storm has come in suddenly and wind and cold rain rain are pelting the windows hard in a positive deluge.

She wonders at the rain and wind. It would cut down on visibility and mobility if their group did make it outside. That could be dangerous. But maybe they could use that too. The zeds wouldn't be able to hear as much either. It might be just what they needed.

She moves towards the stairs.
Does she make it to the second story without any problems (somewhat likely as I think the zeds have mostly been attracted already down the hallway)

(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No

What's the problem? Is it a zed?
(50/50 | 4[d10]) No +Event: Refuse / Success

Are the stair broken or something?

(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

Hmm. I think they are metal stairs. 
What would smash through those? 
The only thing that I can think of that would destroy a chunk of stairs would be some sort of blast from a tank cannon. 

Jodi stares and she can see huge chunks of rubble from a hole in the wall to the outside, and some of the stairs are damaged. Some sort of explosion from the outside.

Jodi stares at the stairs, at the rubble choked stairway, and the feeling of being in a war zone creeps over her. 
Is there a gap through the stairs and rubble that she can crawl through?

(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...

...and what is the rubble to big to move?

(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...

No, she can move it, but it's very loose and precarious. The whole thing could shift and slide down atop her if she attempts to move it or squeeze through it.

Does she attempt to move it?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

She doesn't think it would be wise to move it, but it might be the only way to reach her friends if she can't find another way up.

She'll keep looking for other stairs.

She moves past the rubble-filled stairway and looks out into the night through the gaping hole. Lightning flashes, and a positive gale lashes the side of the building. Furious rain slashes through the gap. 

In the lightning, does she see anything out of the ordinary?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

What does she see?

Meaningfully / Lonely

Near the gap, she sees a child's doll. The plastic face is half melted and one eye stares at her accusingly in the lightning flashes. The clothes are a princess dress covered in mud and something red. She thinks of Amy, and an immense feeling of loneliness starts to crawl into her skin. 

She backs away from the gap and the loneliness, wanting to weep. 

"I'm sorry," she whispers into the wind. "I'm sorry Amy," and she scrubs away at her eyes, as if to push the sorrow out of her. It doesn't work. The wetness from rain or tears from her face feel like they're drowning her. She retreats back further into the hallway until her back its the wall, and she sinks down to the floor clutching her knees to her chest, the axe resting at her feet. For a long moment, she sits huddled in the dark, listening to the moaning wind, like it were some sort of prophet telling her ancient truths.

Eventually, she pulls herself together, the keening wind still wails it's song of sorrow, but there's nothing else to be done but continue down the hallway, looking for some more stairs up.

She comes to an intersection with another hallway that stretches left. She peers down it. Does she see anything dangerous?

(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

Zeds?

(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes

A lot?

(50/50 | 3[d10]) No

There's only a few. We'll say 1d4.

4 = 4[d4]

Ohhhkay. 4... still seems like a lot, but it's not a herd of them. It's a lot for one person though.

Four of them are wandering down the hallway moaning. 

Do they spot her? Unlikely since she's being cautious and the wind is making it hard to hear.
(Unlikely | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes, but they're far away.

But regardless, they're dead eyes latch onto her warm flesh, and they are lumbering towards her.

Jodi curses and backpedals and jogs to the intersection and the lonely doll.

The rubble still doesn't seem safe. She decides to cut through the gap by the stairs, and go try her luck outside. Perhaps the two zeds by the outer door they'd initially come through had wandered off, and she can make her way to her companions that way. 

Or maybe she can find a fire escape that leads to the second floor and she can find another way in that way.

She steps over the doll, trying not to look at its damaged face and into the night.

It's not night time yet, but the clouds and dust and rain have blotted out the sun, casting the light into a near-dark twilight.

She puts one hand up by her eyes, covering them from the slashing rain and looks about for a fire escape. Does she see one?


(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

No, but there's a fallen piece of rubble, like a piece of a nearby building that has collapsed atop this section of Johnston's Brewery. She can climb the rubble and make her way to the second story or even up to the roof with a bit of luck.

She starts climbing up the rubble.
Are there any zeds that notice her climbing and start coming towards her?
Again, I'm going to say unlikely in this bad storm.

(Unlikely | 3[d10]) No

She climbs up the wet slippery stone. Rusty rebar juts out of the rubble, like ancient stalgmites. 

Does she make it up the rubble without incident?
Given her athleticism, minus the wetness, I'll say somewhat likely.

(Somewhat Likely | 4[d10]) No, but...

She does have an incident, but it's not a fall. 

She drops her axe.

The axe spins off into the darkness below, clanging against the sidewalk below.

She wonders if she should climb down and get it. She decides it's not going anywhere, and she knows where it and can come back and get it later. She decides to press on. From the rubble, she sees a window where the rubble has smashed it's way through down into the interior second story room. She's careful not to cut herself, and uses her wrench to brush away any shards of glass before climbing in.

From the rubble pile, she cautiously peers down into the building through the window. She's going to needs some light soon. 
She waits for her eyes to adjust and then listens  and peers down into the room holding her breath. 

Are there any zeds in this room?
(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes

A lot?
(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes...and they hear the scrapings of glass breaking off above them and start to move towards her.

Can they easily climb up to her from the rubble on her side?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

Are there more than a dozen in the room?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

I'll say there are ten that are milling about then.
 
They hiss at her, opening their teeth in hungry anticipation. Those in front try to climb up the rubble. but they are pulled down by others who are equally as hungry to sink rotten teeth into fresh flesh.

If they do climb up, is there room on the blocks for more than one to climb up at a time?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 8[d10]) Yes

Jodi considers. They have to climb up the rubble inside the room to her position outside the room. They're upper bodies would be exposed to her. She could stay and brain them as they came up, but it would be risky if multiple zeds climb up at once. She could quickly get outnumbered, stratched, bit, or even pulled in and torn apart. She decides to beat a hasty retreat back down the slippery rubble to her axe.

Does she make it down without slipping?
(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No

Is she nearly to the bottom when she slips?
(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes

She's ten feet from the bottom when her foot slips on the wet concrete and she flails towards the ground.
She reaches out to catch herself. Does she arrest her fall?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Her hands slip across the slippery concrete. Thankfully, she manages to grab hold of some rebar and her hands aren't cut. She wishes she had her dad's thick leather work gloves, when the cold metal bites into her fingers. She pulls herself back up and makes it down the rest of the way, without suffering more than a few minor abrasions.

She finds the axe at the bottom and picks it back up, grateful to feel its heft in her hands again. She then decides to stay on the outside and make her way around to the side of the building they had initially come in.

Are there any zeds between her and the side of the brewery entrance they'd initially come in? 

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes there are, but they aren't close.
They're far away. 

I'll say it's very unlikely they notice her.
(Very Unlikely | 3[d10]) No

She makes it to the side of the building that they'd come in. Her hair is matted against her face. She's already soaked from the rain. She studies the darkness. Are the two zeds still there?

(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

They're still there, thumping against the door, as if two bodies are going to open it.

How to get them away from the door? she pondered, studying the surrounding terrain.

And sitting there, for some reason, the smell of dust and wet concrete, and the feel of her wet hair on her face, reminds her of a concert she went to with some friends where she danced in the rain. The axe in her hand is nearly transformed into a cold Coca-Cola. She can't remember who she'd gone to see. That was a decade ago. What was his name? A country singer. She'd always liked country music. Songs about family, God, and country. Songs of hope. Even the rhythmic thumping of the walking corpses against the metal door is somewhat percussive and reminiscent. She feels so much in that moment, but she can't feel the hope and promise she'd once felt.

How had Barbara been able to keep her faith? To keep the hope? Jodi thinks of the pocket New Testament in her bag. It was probably waterlogged by now anyway. Besides, how much hope could the stale words give her? God had forgotten the world anyway, hadn't he? Barbara had never believed that, no matter the arguments she and Jodi had had. Her friend never lost faith. But she was not Barbara and the world had turned upside down in a new kind of hell.

Despair threatens to swallow her whole again. She huddles in the cold, feeling rain trickle cold, like a dirty fingernail down her back. She wishes she could somehow rewind the clock and press play again. If only she could find the rewind button maybe things would have turned out differently.
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#7
Episode 6: Dark Spear

Jodi sits in the rain and watches the two zeds bang tirelessly against the door, as the world slowly grows more and more dark around her. 

She wonders if the walkers are indeed tireless. She's never studied one long enough to be sure. But surely so much effort expends energy doesn't it? 

She shakes her head to drive the thoughts away. No time for that. Only time for action. She grips the axe in her wet hands. Her wet clothes are uncomfortable and chafing. Water drips into her eyes. She blinks it away, and slowly moves forward in a crouch. They're distracted and the storm covers her approach. She'll have to be quick.

She walks up behind one and slams the axe down on the back of his skull into the brain. 

Is she successful in finishing it? (+1 from storm. +2 from axe and rear attack -- sounds like very likely)

(Very Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

The zed's head easily splits open like a ripe melon. It slides motionless to the ground.

Is the second one still surprised?

(Somewhat Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

And it doesn't hear her either in the storm. She attacks again.
Does she drop this one too?

(Very Likely | 4[d10]) No

But she hits it?

(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes

(1 = 1[d20]) Negligible: Nick/Scratch/Bruise.

What type of zed is it?

Unusually strong zombie

This one is huge, like a construction worker who worked overtime for ten years. Beefy arms. Thick neck. Thick skull. Somehow it knew Jodi was behind it. It turns and hisses, raising it's arms to grab her as it spins. She brings the axe down. The motion is enough to shift the attack from the head onto it's torso instead. The axe bites into its flesh, but only superficially.

As it spins, it's arms flail out and backhand her.

Is she hit with a backhand blow?
+1 because it's big. +1 because she's somewhat surprised. -1 because she's got the axe in her way.
So... somewhat likely.

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

(16 = 16[d20]) Severe Injury: Incapacitating and may become Critical if untreated.

The blow itself probably wasn't that much damage. Something secondary must have caused the damage. Let's ask.
Does she fall a top some rebar?

(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes

Oooooo. Ouch...! That is not good.

The beefy arm slams her back across the face. She spins, stumbles over a chunk of rubble and feels pain unlike anything she'd felt before in her life. Pain like a hot spear drives into her side. She gives a primal scream of pain and desperation.

Do her companions hear her?

+2 from primal scream. -1 from noise from storm and from zeds banging on their doors. Somewhat likely that they'll hear her.

(Somewhat Likely | 5[d10]) Yes, but...

They do hear the scream, but what? Did the zeds break through their door from the hallway into the distillery on the inside?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 5[d10]) No

Do they recognize it as her scream?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but... +Event: Pursue / Love

They want to help whatever or whoever is hurt.

They run to the door and see who is out there and the zed turns it's back on them as it advances towards Jodi, impaled on the rebar.

It reaches it's hands out to grab her. To shove her frail flesh into its mouth.

Has Jodi dropped her axe from the pain and injury?

(Very Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes, and it's hard for her to face the oncoming threat, from her angle. But she hears it's groaning, her back is to it.
She pulls out the pistol. Feels the cold metal against her palm. She tries to aim it one handed over her shoulder... with a spear of rebar through her.
Does she it it? -1 from being in an odd position. -1 from rebar pain.
So unlikely, since she's not specially trained.
(Unlikely | 8[d10]) Yes

Ah hah! She hits it. Nice! That was lucky!

In the head?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

(20 = 20[d20]) Critical Injury: Requires immediate attention; clearly life-threatening if not immediately deadly.

It's not the head, but it drives through the spinal column, paralyzing the zombie.

The round slams into the corpse. It pitches backward, falling to the hard concrete. It hisses and struggles to move on it's side, it's eyes fixed on her blankly, it's mouth opening and shutting as if already gnawing on her gristle.

Jodi gasps from the pain. She feels at her side with her left hand. Warm wetness spill through her left hand around the rebar spear. Blood covers the large concrete block beneath her. Her hand is warm and sticky. She smells the blood in the air. She tastes the coppery taste of life beating out of her. Her heartbeat sounds too loudly in her ear. It struggles against the blood loss.

That gunshot was a lucky one. Two more steps and it would have been on her. It feels like... the simile is lost on her. It's a spike of rusted twisted rebar steel. That's exactly what it felt like. The twisted rusty metal bites both cold and hot in her flesh.

Luckily, she can still breathe with some difficulty. Had the rebar missed her lungs? Her organs?

She blinks away the water from her eyes and the stinging sweat that has now joined it. She hears footsteps behind her and raises the gun again, it wavers. But she's not going to get eaten alive. She can't. She brings the gun back to her own head.

Then she sees the zombie's head smashed in and soon Ron and Tony are beside her.

"Madre mia," Tony whispers. "It is Jodi. She's hurt!"

She weeps. The tears sliding warm on the cold water on her cheeks. She rests her head against the cold concrete and closes her eyes.

Ron bites off a cuss word and holds her head. "You're okay. We're here now. We're here. You're not dead yet."

"It... it didn't bite me," Jodi whispers against the falling rain. It's hard to speak from how she's lying, her face pressed against the cold concrete block. "I got it first."

"I know. I can see that. That's one helluva shot Miss." She feels Ron brushing her hair back from her eyes. She opens her eyes and meet his. His brown eyes show concern and uncertainty.

"What are we going to do?" Millie asks.

"We need to lift her off carefully,"

"You'll kill her!" Tony says.

"It's our only choice! She can't stay out here. She'd die from exposure." Ron says.

"You need to cut the bar. With a saw. You have to leave her here!"

"We don't have the tools!" Ron says

"Then we need to find some!"

"Where? It's dark. We can't leave her here."

"Give me fifteen minutes!" Tony says. "I'll find some."

"No Tony! No!" Millie says. "Don't go off alone! There could be more of them."

"Tony, I need you here," Ron says. "I can't lift her straight up like I need to if you get taken by those things. If you leave now, you'll kill her!"

"Don't leave me!" Jodi pleads. She can't bear the thought of them leaving her hear pierced like a shiskabob. "I'll take my chances. But don't leave me here. I...have bandages...in my pack. Do what you have to."

Tony isn't happy about it, but he acquiesces and nods curtly, "Fine."

"Let's get her inside some place else where it's safe. Tony, get on that side, and lift her legs. I'll lift under her arms. On the count of three. One. Two. Three!"

Hot pain like a lava spear flashes through her again and she screams.

Does she blackout?
(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

The pain is too much. It's a dozen red hot pokers sliding in and out of her. Her scream turns to moan and then blissful darkness takes her.
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#8
Episode 7 - Sister's Keeper

How is Jodi doing? 
I use the MAG (symbols snow suit and snow flakes, sun, bird head, suit of armor, chains, nails, pants, mushroom, some sort of skull.)

Jodi feels cold all over, her teeth are chattering. Sweat makes her skin clammy.

Is she in a building?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Are any of her companions around?

(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes

Are any not there?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No +Event: Extravagance / Lies

Is it daytime?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

Is it the same night?

(Somewhat Unlikely | 6[d10]) No, but...

She feels trapped. Her clothes are too tight. She struggles. No, not her clothes. Her shirt has been torn halfway off and a bandage is wound around side.

Was she current on her tetanus shots? (I'm going to say Likely since as a conscious mother she would have taken Amy to the Dr. to get her shots and would have remained current herself)

(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Was it within the last 5 years though?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

So... she still might be at risk of an infection. I'll ask the GM at a later time if she's showing signs of tetanus infection. It takes 4 to 21 days to manifest itself.

Jodi tries to cough, but the pain in her side is too much and she starts gasping. 

Someone puts a water bottle to her mouth and she eagerly drinks it down.

"Millie?" Jodi asks. She shivers again.

Is it Millie?

(Likely | 1[d10]) No, and...

"Where's Millie?" Jodi asks. "Who are you?"

... and is Millie not there?

(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes

"Shhh. You need rest. Just rest."

Someone is with her though from her companions. It's either Tony or Ron or both?
Both?

(50/50 | 3[d10]) No

Ron?

(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...

She opens her eyes and in the gloom she sees Tony sitting in the same room. His head is in his hands, his manner despondent. Ron isn't anywhere to be found.

"Who are you?" she asks the woman.

"Catina," the woman says. She's an American-Asian woman mid thirties, dark hair, tattoos on her arms.

"Where am I?"

Is she in the industrial sector still?

(Likely | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes, but it's closer to the less-populated edge of the industrial sector, near the border of the town.

Are they in a factory?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

Foundary?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

We'll say a repair shop for large vehicles, like tractors etc.

"A repair shop. Near the edge of town," Catina says.

"How did I get here?"

The last thing she remembers was the knife hot pain arcing through her and then blackness. She gingerly touches the hole in her side.

"Are you a doctor?" she asks Catina.

"A farmer."

"Where are Millie and Ron?"

Catina frowns and looks at Tony.

Is Millie hurt or dead?

(Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

Dead?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

But hurt. How did she get hurt?

Block / Outside

Catina sighs. "Millie is hurt. They were a block away from here when it happened."

Was it zeds?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

... They weren't the direct cause it sounds like.

Catina continues, "As best I understand it, your group was carrying you, trying to escape from some walkers. Millie already was wounded from her arm. They were all looking for something safe. And then..."

Tony glowers and gets up and leaves the room.

What was it? We'll use MAG to get ideas of what hurt Millie. Symbols are Shark Teeth, Dart in a target, Bull horns, Portal, stick figures, multiple biting heads on thunder bolt, hooded head, and star)

"... feral animals," Catina finishes. "A pack of feral dogs actually. They mauled her before Ron could set you down and get his gun out and scare them off. That's when I first heard your friends. The gunshots. I came out to investigate. Millie was screaming and her legs and arms were covered in blood from bite wounds. I jumped in and helped." She shrugs. "Millie's in the next room. We've done what we can for her, but..." she sighed.

"And Ron?"

"He went to a medical clinic. There's one about ten blocks north east of here. It's dangerous, but he said you'd need a tetanus booster assuming you survived the blood loss. It looks like you did. Congratulations. I'm not much of a medic, but as a farmer you learn a thing or two around animals."

"And you just decided to help us out of the goodness of your heart?"

Did she?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

"That's partly it," Catina smiles. "I do try to help, but I need payment too. I've got kids to care for. I came this close to try and get supplies. I saw an opportunity and took it."

Jodi leans back and closes her eyes. It could've been worse. Her side feels like it'd been kicked by a bull, and every breath brings a sharp stab of pain. It might be worse if Ron didn't make it back. She knows isn't in any condition to move. Just breathing hurts. She tries to breath in shallow gasps. That seems to help. It'll likely be days before she would be able to move. And that would be if infection doesn't kill her. They wouldn't have enough food to last that long. Maybe a couple of days if they rationed their supplies among their group. But now Catina was a potential new mouth to feed. Or a potential source of food; as a farmer, she was sure to have a farm nearby. A farm might have its own food. Cows. Chickens. The works.

"You were lucky, it seems," Catina says, as if reading her mind about her wounds. She moves back the bandage and checks it and then dabs a cloth smelling like rubbing alcohol on her side. It feels like fire dances on her wound and Jodi lies there gasping. Catina finishes and covers up the wound. "From how you got hurt it should've killed you. But it looks like the rebar missed any major organs."

"Thank you," Jodi breathes and leans back on her bed, a makeshift cot comprised of her poncho on some wooden pallets, with some of her clothes underneath her for some padding.

Jodi lets her eyes close.

Does Ron get back that night?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

He arrives back in the morning. Does he have any medicine?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but... +Event: Persecute / Portals

Yes, but not enough for both Millie and Jodi.
Jodi hears him talking to Catina when he gets in.

"There was a locked heavy door that I couldn't get through," he says. "I think it had more medicine. The lamebrains were everywhere. But I did get some."

He holds up a needle and shot wrapped in plastic.

Tetanus shot?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

"I found the rabies shot for Millie," he tosses it to Tony. Tony grunts in surprise and his dark look lightens. He nods in thanks then goes to the other room to minister the meds to his wife.

"And for you," he hands some general antibiotics and other over-the-counter meds to Catina.

"And how's our patient," Ron kneels by Jodi and touches her forehead.

"C-c-cold," she says as shivers wrack her body.

"Your fever has broken. That explains the clamminess."

"I didn't get bit. It was just a cut," she says between chattering teeth and shuddering breaths.

"Heh. A cut. That was more like a spear wound. Good thing we managed to stop the bleeding."

"Catina might have a farm," Jodi whispers grabbing his hand. "It might be safe. A place to rest."

Ron's eyes flicker to Catina who is investigating the meds. "We'll see. Get some rest. We'll see."
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#9
Episode 8 - Eternal Night

Time passes in a mixture of fretful nightmares, blurred visions, clammy skin, and whispered voices and ministrations.

When Jodi next opens her eyes, has a lot of time passed, like days?

(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes

She feels weak and incredibly thirsty. 

Is it day?


(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...
And it's really dark...

She opens her eyes again, and her heart begins to pound. She can barely see. 
It's night and incredibly dark. No moon or stars shine through the window.

Did Ron manage to convince Catina to take them. He would have promised his help. Plus he has a nice assault rifle. That always helps change someone's mind to his way of thinking. And he did get her the medicine she wanted. I'll say VL:

(Very Likely | 7[d10]) Yes

She thrashes and shoves the covers off and struggles to sit up. Covers? A bed! Her mouth opens in astonishment, as her eyes very slowly adjust to the darkness. There's a gap in the door, and a small glimmer of light flickers through. 
 
She wonders how long it been since she had a real bed? It felt like ages.

Her head swims and her stomach growls. The puncture wound in her side aches, but not a tenth as badly as it did before.

She swings her feet off the bed and stands. Carpet is under her bare feet. Carpet! Her legs are stiff. Her joints even stiffer. With agonizing slowness, she attempts to stand. A wave of dizziness envelops her. 

Does she fall over?

(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes

She clutches at a nightstand and falls down on her side, pulling the non-working electric lamp down on top of in a crash.

Breathing hard, she crawls to a sitting position, leaning against the side of the bed. She's wearing sweats. Not her own. And a sweatshirt, also not her own.

The door opens.

Who comes in?

Catina?

(Somewhat Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Yes, and she's followed by Ron with a pail of water and a ladle.

Ron kneels beside her and brings the ladle to her lips. She drinks hungrily, gulping the liquid down.

Catina, sets a kerosene lantern on the nightstand and shoves the remnants of the lamp into a corner of the bedroom.

"Where are we?"
"Catina's place," Ron says. "She was gracious enough to let us stay?"

Catina doesn't say anything, but frowns slightly.

"How many days have I been out?"

"You drifted in and out of consciousness for two weeks."

Two weeks. Did Ron manage to find her a tetanus shot in all that time?

(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes

Ron brings her another ladle and she drinks more slowly, savoring the coolness that washes down her parched throat. "We got you some medicine, a tetanus booster shot."

Did Tony help him?
(50/50 | 3[d10]) No
Hmmm. Perhaps Tony has reverted to his normal Ron-hating self then...

Are Tony and Millie still around?

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

"Tony? Millie?"
"Oh, they're here alright," Ron frowns.
"What does that mean?"

Inspect / Intrigues

"Something's not right with that guy," Ron says when Catina takes the pail and leaves the room.

"What do you mean?"

"He's been acting strange. Mysterious. Like," he waves his hand. "Like he's hiding something."

Sounds like Tony planning something. What is he planning that Ron doesn't know about? I'll use the MAG:
(pie, cake, eaten fish -- something related with food then, footprints, flaming arrow, flashing scimitars, an arrow in a bullseye and footsteps. Ah hah. Idea has struck, but I'll not expose it yet.)

"And Millie?"

"She's fine when she's by herself, but when Tony shows up, she clams up and it's like the lights go off inside of her." He shakes his head. "But enough about that, don't worry about them, how about you? How are you feeling?"

"Better," she smiles at him. "A lot better. Thanks for everything you've done."

"Hey, it's what any gentleman would do."

She smiles and her stomach growls, and she flushes. He smiles back. "Sounds like someone wants some breakfast."

"You have no idea."

"I'll round something up for you. We've been putting food into you. Mushed up stuff, like applesauce and soup. Things you can swallow without having to chew much. It was the only way to keep you fed. Half the time you'd just spit it back up. I'm glad you're appetite is back."

"Catina has been feeding us?"

"Sure. I've been helping out where I can around the farm. Fixing things. Trying to maintain security. I sometimes run into town on an errand or two."

"Isn't that dangerous? Walkers?" 

"Sure you get those when you go to the borders of the town. But thankfully, we don't get many lambrains round here and we don't have to go often. We have a nice setup here. Our main fear is more from marauders than the lamebrains."

Have they had run-ins with marauders here since they got here?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

"Marauders?" she asks, her voice spiking and she tries to stand.
Ron helps her to sit on the bed and scratches at a short beard that he now has. "We're just being cautious. Nothing has happened yet. We're just wary."

"So I've been here more than two weeks and no walkers?"

Is that true?

(Likely | 6[d10]) Yes, but... +Event: Move / Portals

"That's right. At least, none that get close to the farmhouse. Catina and I check the fence lines every day." He shrugs and sits next to her. "We sometimes run across a few lambrain stragglers moving along the fences, looking for an opening, nothing like you'd find in the city of course. But the fences are strong and we make sure the gate is locked every night."

Jodi sat there for a while. Was she really safe? 

"Why don't you get some rest and I'll show you around in the morning."

Does she want to go to sleep?

(Unlikely | 1[d10]) No, and...

She shakes her head. "Thanks, but no thanks! I'm done with lying around in bed. I need to move around. Can you show me around some tonight? Now?"

"As near as I can reackon, it's still early morning," he yawns. "But sure."

He helps her stand and she leans on him as they walk down creaking stairs. She's still dizzy, but getting the water in her helped a lot. plus with him supporting her she's able to manage. They're in a simple two story farm house.

Let's find out what they have?
Horses?

(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes

Goats/Sheep?

(Somewhat Likely | 8[d10]) Yes

Cows?

(Somewhat Likely | 4[d10]) No, but...

No, but...Catina does have a steer that they're planning on turning into jerky.

A well or stream?

(Very Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Chickens?

(Somewhat Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Ron leads her through a living room with walls of books, a dead TV, to a large kitchen and dining area. There he lifts a cloth off some cold eggs, cheese, and some greens and pours her a glass of cool goat milk.

Jodi makes a face at the peculiar taste, but eats ravenously at the very early breakfast. She soon feels sated. It's the first real meal she's had in months.

Ron takes the kerosene lantern and shows her around. There's a deck with a waist-high white fence that wraps around the front of the house. The farmhouse is old, but quaintly decorated. It feels like civilization, and Jodi has to force her hands to not flick on a light switch she knows won't work. 

Ron quietly escorts her outside. She bangs into the screen door and smiles as the door creeks. He puts a finger to his lips. "Catina's two kids are sleeping," he whispers. "They're nice girls for teenagers. Lisa and Jen. They're a lot better behaved than I ever was at their ages. Hardworkers too." 

They sit on the a porch swing, and stare out at the dead darkness of night.

Does anything unusual happen tonight?

(Unlikely | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

"What's that?" Jodi asks pointing to a glimmer of light far in the distance.

Ron frowns and he immediately extinguishes his Kerosene lantern. The hiss of gas light gives way to silence. Immediately thick darkness blankets them. They can hear insects and farm animals. "What's wro--?"

"Shhh," Ron says. She feels him move beside her. They listen hard and watch the light weave closer and then farther away in the distance as if moving in a winding pattern. 

Do they hear something too?


(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

"I don't hear anything," Jodi whispers.

"Me neither," Ron whispers back.

"Do you know who it is?"


Does he?

(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...

Yes but he doesn't know details, and he doesn't want to tell her. Doesn't want to frighten her.

She feels him shrug beside her and he leans back. "Probably just some scavengers."

"Scavengers huh? Are they dangers?"

He rolls his shoulders again. "We've been seeing lights sometimes. That's pretty far away though. Not near our fence line. Beyond the borders of the fence." 

"Did they see us?"

"Hard to say. It doesn't look like the light is coming towards us."

Jodi wondered who they were, what their story was. But soon the light seems to fade away into nothing, and she couldn't see anything at all. 

She moved her hand in front of her face and saw the barest of movement. 

"Sure is dark," Jodi says. She shifts herself a little closer to him, cold despite the sweatshirt she's wearing.  

"Everything is dark now," he says. "I remember Old Man Norris back where I grew up in a small town. He was always talkin' about how we should all get off the grid. Get back to our roots. Back to the land. We all called him Crazy Norris. Well, Crazy Norris got his wish in the end. I guess the whole world is off the grid. Normally, you would get lights from the city reflecting off a cloud bank like this, providing a little light even under these clouds. But now..."

The light of civilization grew dark. An eternal night had descended upon humanity. Could they recover? Jodi had always believed in the unconquerable nature of the human spirit. Surely the same American drive that wrought the greatest generation and that put men on the moon could also come up with some way to fight this thing. To bring back the light from the dark night that threatened to consume all humanity. Surely there was a way to win wasn't there? A way to bring the light back?

"You really think there's nothing left? No government somewhere? No more military trying to restore order?"

He doesn't say anything. After a while she gives a sigh and begins to shiver. All they had were each other. She leans against him.

He shifts and puts an arm around her. And they sit there watching the dark night slowly fade into morning. 

It seems to take an eternity.
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#10
Episode 9 - Conspiracy, Competition, Companion

"I can count on you, right?" Tony whispers to Millie. They're behind the farmhouse, gathering laundry off a clothesline.

Millie sees the feverish light in her husbands eyes and represses a shudder.

"I don't know," she hedges. "I don't think it's a good idea to--"

"Quiet!" his eyes dart to the windows and doors and to the woods in the distance and he shushes her standing close. "They might hear."

"No one is listening, Tony," she yanks the clothes off the line with one hand, snapping some clothespins. She hurls them into the wicker basket at their feet. "You're getting worked up over nothing!"

"Nothing?" He grabs her injured arm and spins her about. She gasps in pain and she drops a white shirt in the dirt. Her broken arm was in a splint and held against her chest in a sling. Thankfully, it was healing, but bones knitting back together took time. A lot of time. She needed that time. She didn't want to spoil what they had here.

Tony didn't seem to notice her discomfort. "You call what he did nothing? Those kids...?" he spits into the dirt and growls. "What do you call that?"

"It was horrible, yes, but you don't know if he did anything to the kids," she says. "You don't have proof."

"Proof?" he rubs his hand across his face, wiping away a sheen of sweat. "He admitted he was there. He admitted what they did. He's a killer!"

"He's not a bad man, Tony! You're confused. He helped me when the dogs bit me, remember. He went and got me medicine. He saved my life."

Tony pushes her against the wall of the house. His face is close to hers. His breath is stale, his eyes wild and frantic. She feels the grain of the wood bite into her back.

She feels trapped. Does she cry out for help? She fears retribution from him though, so I'm going to say unlikely.

(Unlikely | 1[d10]) No, and...

Her heart pounds and a desire to run far away rises within her, and any retort dies within her as her will crumbles.

"He got the medicine for him!" he pushed her harder against the wall. "You understand? He did it to lull us here. To bring us here. So he can have his way with us."

He used to be so gentle, but now... This new Tony. He is something else entirely. Paranoia mixed with hatred gleamed in his eyes. But could she blame him. His world had been rocked so suddenly and so entirely, it could drive anyone to the boundaries of their mental fortitude. She started to pull away from him. She wanted to wash her arms where he touched her. Her heart thrums inside her seeking to run away where she cannot.

A tear trickles out of the corner of her eye. Tony notices it, and he wipes it away with a finger and kisses her. "Don't worry," he whispers gently, his warm breath on her neck as he whispers in her ear. "Don't worry, I won't let him hurt you. I won't! Just stand by me when I give the signal and do your part."

The sudden gentleness makes this somehow all the more frightening. Not trusting herself to speak, she nods and feels her pulse a sharp staccato in her neck.

"Good," he says and traces a finger down her jawline.  

Does anyone appear?

(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...

The door on the other side of the house opens and shuts. 

Tony pushes away from her and rubs his hand across his mouth. "Very good," he nods. Then he moves his hands through his hair again and wipes them both on this jeans, then spins around in a slow uncertain circle before he drifts away around the corner of the house. 

Millie bites her lower lip and sinks down to sit on the short, rough, cold October grass. She wishes the warmth from the pale sun could somehow penetrate the coldness and dread growing in her heart. 

----

Another two weeks passes. It's now the middle to late October. What's the weather like?

Roughly / Ruined

Dark clouds build in the distant horizon and the weather is chill. Jodi and Ron are out on horses, checking the fence line. They're dressed somewhat warmly, in sweaters, blue jeans, and wind breakers.

"Looks like rain," Jodi says, watching the clouds pile up on once another in the distance.

"I'd say a bit more than that," Ron says. "I think we're in for a good old-fashioned country storm."

"Well, it's a good thing we're done checking the fence line then. Race you back to the barn!" She flashes a smile and then digs her heels into the horse's flanks. It feels good to ride. To feel the wind rushing by her, to see the ground spinning beneath the horse's whirling hoofs. More than good.

She has a head start, but she isn't sure she can maintain it. Ron has been around horses much longer than she. Her behind still feels sore from the ride they had yesterday. She hasn't quite learned how to post with the motion of the horse yet, and every time she hits the saddle, the jarring motion sends a tendril of pain through her side. A reminder that she isn't a hundred percent. But still, the little pain is worth the ride. The freedom feels exhilarating after the days spent cooped up resting and recuperating. She lets her hair stream behind her and revels in this new found freedom.

Does Ron pass her?

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Ron flashes an infuriating grin at her and actually fake tips a hat at her, cowboy style, as he gallops past her. She grits her teeth, lowers her head and slaps the reins and kicks the side of the horse.

With the growing storm and her inexperience with horses, does she have any issues with her mare?
I'm going to say likely.

(Likely | 2[d10]) No
Surprise surprise.

The horse apparently wants to get back to the stall. It eagerly gallops home, not playing the usual tricks it has done in recent days. Jodi guesses that it's probably just anxious to get out of the stinging hail, to a dinner of some oats, and have a good brush down.

When she arrives at the barn, Jodi's face is flush and alive from the ride. Her ears are cold and her nose feels nipped by the wind. She grins at defying the elements. She hops off and directs the bay-colored mare toward her stall.

Does Tony make his move?

(Likely | 9[d10]) Yes

Does anything else, like some sort of external threat also happen?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No +Event: Passion / Competition

Is Tony at the Barn?

(50/50 | 2[d10]) No

The horse is skittish as she leads it to the stall. Out the window she sees the driving wind lashing hail across trees, stripping leaves, felling dry branches, and swaying some trees nearly to the ground.

Hail hammers out of the sky, pounding its weight onto the corrugated metal roof over the barn. She can barely hear anything above that. 

Hands suddenly reach out and grab her and she squeals, spinning, instincts kicking in, her fist flies, and there's Ron, grinning at her.


Does she hit him?

(50/50 | 4[d10]) No

He grabs her fist in his large hand, gently restraining her. "You finally made it," he smiles. Her hands are cold. His are slightly warmer.

"I didn't fall off my horse. I'm getting better."

She tries to pull her hand away, but not very hard. He continues to hold her hand.

"So, what do I get for winning this grand race of yours?" And he snakes his other arm around her waist. His hand presses against the small of her back. 

"I knew I should have got further ahead before challenging you," she grins back at him. "Since you won, I'll was the dishes tonight." It was his turn after all.

"Hmmm. I was thinking," he peers at her hand and then up in her eyes, "that maybe I should win a dance with you instead. But you can still do the dishes if you want."

"A dance?" she laughs out loud at that.

"Sure why not?"

"With what music, stupid?"

"What? The lowing of the cows ain't music enough for you?"

"Hah!" she can't believe this is happening. Was he actually flirting with her? 

She had to admit she was attracted to him. Not that there were many fish in the ocean these days. But still, he was...what? Handsome? Handsome enough. He was shorter than she would have liked, but he had a rugged gentlemanly way about him. It could be infuriating and endearing at the same time. And he did own a uniform. Was she going to hit all of the typical stereotypes?

"Cows aren't going to cut it, mister," she flashes a smile at him as he tries to pull her closer. She pulls back just enough.

"I think there's a harmonica in the living room. I could convince Catina to play for us. We could jig."

She giggles at that. "You? Jig? I don't think that word goes with you."

"Jig is my middle name. You should see me when the fiddle starts playing and we have a good old fashioned ho down. Square dance and everything."

"Not only a gentleman but an old fashioned gentleman. Don't tell me you're really that backwater."

"Hey," he shrugged and pulled her to him again. "Ma and Pa raised me right."

"Did they teach you to take advantage of poor defenseless girls in run-down barns in a hail storm?"

"Take advantage of girls? Ah, no not me. You're right. I am a gentleman. I was just thinking, if I can't get a dance for my winnings, I could settle for... a kiss?" His eyes twinkle with sudden mirth. "With the lady's permission of course." If he wasn't holding her so closely, he probably would have bowed.

She feels her face flush and her throat goes dry. She doesn't know what to say. He was going to kiss her! He leans in. She leans forward and her eyes start to drift closed of their own accord.

Does Tony show up?

(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...

Just then the barn door slams open, and a cold gust of wind tosses bits of hay about the barn. It's Tony. His face is matted wet from the storm and his eyes are red and flit about the room wildly.
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