I snuck out of the encampment with my three companions as the sky gradually grew brighter. I kept my head down and fixed my eyes on the bushes around us because I was waiting for something to happen.
I blinked and looked up. Straight ahead of me was a mob -- all the refugees were up. The sun was high in the sky, and it looked to be around 10 am already.
The woman's brother was standing right in front of me. I hid my face from him because he was looking for me earlier. He led the refugees, all of them carrying guns or some other weapon. They seemed not to notice me or the others who were following, crouched down to the ground. They either didn't notice, or they just didn't care -- everyone was looking past us, down a hill.
Yes, the setting changed before I knew it. The level clearing in the forest was nowhere to be seen. The people were the same, but we were in a maze of suburban houses. It was as if the camp was moved to a huge fenced-off backyard in a valley. That sounds horrible.
Anyway, somehow the refugees in the camp figured that the people who had taken them in and sworn to protect them were corrupt liars. They weren't going to do any more than any other stranger would do for another person they'd just met. All the escapees were on the same page with one another, though -- over time, little groups formed in the camp as people began to learn more about each other. Eventually, those groups started talking with other groups and in no time at all, there was a true network of people that had formed.
Almost everyone was part of it, except for the "leaders," who were never around. Pretty much all they did was venture out into the city to try and find other refugees. Over time, there were less persons to be found and more inhumane creatures roaming the streets. The ones who were saved were grateful for their help, but it became obvious that the "leaders" were slowly growing more..... not selfish, but -- let's just say they looked around the camp and realized they didn't want all that responsibility. They didn't want to be held back by 500+ people. And it was becoming more obvious with each passing day that the safe perimeters of the encampment were diminishing. It was a miracle that they hadn't been found out yet.
So here was the community of refugees at the top of the hill (the area still somewhat surrounded by trees), looking down at the lone building that housed the 20 men and women they once looked up to. They now saw them as selfish, uncaring, and willing to sacrifice any of the campers to hold back a mob of raging zombies.
Kill the 20 who were ready to run. Don't elect a new leader for all 500, since that will just start everything over, but have someone to go to for each of the smaller groups. Keep the camp. Strengthen the borders (right now the area was closed off by nothing more than a wire fence). And then... hope for the best.
I'm not exactly sure why I wanted to leave other than the fact that I knew all this was going to happen and I didn't want to be a part of it. Maybe I had another destination and I didn't plan to stay there forever.
In any case, the four of us stayed low while the bold protestors prepared for mutiny, most of them asking themselves for the umpteenth time if that's really what they wanted to do. No one knew anything, anymore.
Then the 20 men and women walked out of the building behind me and everyone I faced stopped thinking. Everything was all emotion and motion, and everyone ran down the hill. They moved around me, and around the three others. We went in the opposite direction.
With all the yelling going on, the zombies would find their way to the camp in a few minutes. I saw a flash of zombies filtering through the streets and panicked in my head.
Back to where I was crouched on the ground, I turned to the others and urgently said, "We have to go. Now."
So while the last of the 500 refugees ran down the hill to claim the camp as their own (and consequently trap themselves in the valley -- ironic), we climbed uphill until we reached some steps. We went up the stairs and saw that there was no exit beyond.
We were trapped. I didn't know when the fence was put there, but it was apparently too high for us to climb.
I saw the zombies again, this time much closer to the camp.
"Why isn't there a way out??"
I felt like I was in the Matrix and I just found the brick wall behind the curtain. Shyit.
I turned around to see that a good number of the refugees actually answered their own questions and decided that mutiny wasn't really what they wanted. They faced the opposite direction now, their backs to the valley below. They'd followed us up the steps, trusting our better judgment. But when they saw that they couldn't even trust us to know where the hell we were going, all the rage was back.
"You mean you don't even fucking know the way out of here?" someone yelled.
Some other crazed person who overheard this cried, "You're not going ANYWHERE."
As if my leaving was going to draw any more zombie-attention to the camp than everyone else's warcries. The zombies were down the street, now.
Another brawl started -- some refugees stood up for us, and other refugees attacked them for doing so.
We snuck away while we could. I remember thinking, "This is ridiculous. No one's even attacking the right people anymore. Damn zombies, look what you've done."
I hoped the three people who'd been sane with me so far were still in the same state.
While sneaking away, I noticed there was an opening in the fence after all.
('Cause that's gonna keep the zombies out. Good job. This camp is pointless.)
So we squeezed through the gap and left everything behind. Somehow we were able to stay out of sight while I saw zombies attempting to scale the fence and tear away at the breach.
And then they flooded into the camp.