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The Joy of Argument by Albert Navarra

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Out of Luck

by Aaron Wyckoff

David’s truck screeched to a halt outside the brick building. He was halfway out the door before he even cut the ignition.

“Come on, we have to get inside!”

He grabbed two duffels from the bed and tossed one at Linda, who staggered as she caught it.

“The fire station? Why here?”

“Look at it. It’s an older station, all brick, with steel doors and almost no windows on the first floor.”

David hauled open the front doors and dragged Linda inside. Dropping his bag, he pulled out a heavy chain and padlock. He strung the rusty but solid links tightly through the crash bars and snapped the lock into place.

Through the small Plexiglas window he could see them, staggering toward the truck, toward the building. There were hundreds, but he was sure they were too weak, too stupid to get inside.

Drawing a deep breath, he looked at Linda, her hair disheveled but beautiful as always.

“But even better, this place has everything we need.” He gestured at the fire engines. “Plenty of medical supplies, and the pumper has over a thousand gallons of water in it--enough for months. Upstairs there are beds, a kitchen, propane stoves, and stockpiles of nonperishable foods. My cousin used to work here, told me all about it.”

Linda tugged lightly at the lock. “I hate being locked in like this.”

David wrapped his arm around her shoulders.

“Baby, we aren’t locked in. They are locked out. Those...things. Zombies, walkers, living dead, whatever the hell they are. The front doors are locked, the garage doors are down. We’re safe now.”

Linda released the lock and watched it dangle gently. Then David felt her shoulders tense and she turned to look at him.

“The front door...what about the back door?”

“This place doesn’t have one. It’s just the garage, a dorm upstairs, and a couple offices.” He pointed at a pair of thin wooden doors to their right. Walking over to the nearest, he pulled it open, then froze.

Sunlight streamed through the large broken windows on the far wall, backlighting the twenty or so zombies standing inside.

“Oh, crap!”

David slammed the door shut and wedged a folding chair under the knob. Already, the creatures beyond were pounding at the door. It was too thin and would not last long.

David raced to the garage doors and hit the open button. They refused to budge.

“The power’s out!”

“We need to get out of here!” screamed Linda. She tugged desperately at the locked chain. “Where’s the key?”

David ran to the exit, fumbling in his pocket for the keys, but he found nothing. As the door behind him splintered, David stared out the Plexiglas window at his truck. Its doors were still open, just as they had left them.

And dangling from the ignition was his lucky white rabbit’s foot keychain.

This story was based on these randomly generated images.

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