*WARNING: Vulgar language is used and some adult situations with a deep sense of my disturbing mind- read if you wont get bawt'hurt*

Chapter 4: Christmas time in Hell

Paul closed the door quickly-again locking it behind him to see Maria casting a quick glance at
him that said simply "Shit." The infected that had been quickly approaching from the rear and
front met as one- pounding on the iron bars that protected and seperated the windows and door
from immediate harm. The two were safe from the threat of the outside for now.

"Stay sharp- lets make sure we are alone" whispered Paul, putting the empty Glock 19 in his
pack- at the same time taking out a .40 magazine for his own Glock 22, slapping it in and
putting the other in his pocket.

Maria scanned the immediate store in front of her. It was a fairly simple setup- five ailes of
assorted goods lined parralel to each other in the center, the wall as well lined up with goods.
The front desk looked like an old-school traditional pawn shop- an "L" shaped waist high
counter that stretched across most of the store.

"Looks empty to me" said Maria- satisfied with her assesment.
"And a book is always what the cover suggest" said Paul, eyes still locked forward- assessing
the store, seeing things in a way that Maria couldn't.

Looking around in his immediate surroundings- Paul spotted out and picked up a local newspaper
laying on the ground and threw it to the far end of the store.

A few seconds of still silence passed as it was broken by the sound of growls. Three infected
came screaming to the middle of the store where the newspaper had landed- Maria quickly dropping
one with a blast to the throat as Paul dropped the other two with two quick burst.

"Amazing what going the extra mile does huh?" said Paul, smirking as he stood up and approached
the bodies to confirm his kills. Two were still twitching, Paul quickly ending them with rounds
to the head.
"You look too comfortable doing that" said Maria, walking up next to Paul.
"Doing what?" replied Paul, honestly unaware of Maria's statement.
"Thats kinda disturbing," replied a now awkwarded Maria, kneeling down to one of the infected.
"What are you doing?" asked a curious Paul.
"Mr. Over-observe sure is oblivious some times. The name on his tag is 'Dave.' I am willing to
bet Dave of the Dave's Pawn Shop that we are in."
"Is that where we are? I didn't even notice." replied Paul, scratching his head.

The two began to scavenge threw the store to find that more had been looted than previously
thought. The greater majority of the weapons section had been picked clean save for two .30-06
high power hunting rifles with scopes. The ammo section was almost completely empty save for 1/2
a box of 9mm rounds, a box of 12gauge shells and two boxes of .30-06 rounds. Maria drug up to
the pile a pair of sleeping bags and two flashlights with spare batteries, Paul bringing a flare
gun with flares, and a AM/FM radio.

"Looks like we came out pretty lucky huh" said Maria with a smile on her face.
"I was honestly expecting more," replied Paul, sighing as he looked to the far reaches of the
store, "say, have you checked out the back area yet?"
"Not yet- I thought you did" replied Maria picking up her shotgun.
"Lets check it out" said Paul, drawing his pistol as he led the approach to the unsearched area.

Two closed doors sat next to each other. Paul tried one and found it to be locked. Preparing for
the same result for the second, he twisted the knob to find it unlocked.

"Get ready, this one is unlocked." said Paul, getting into a position to breach the door.

Paul bursted open the door, quickly scanning and confirming the room clear. The room had a
computer desk and file cabinets lining the walls, clearly a management room. Paul searched
further to see a ladder that led to a hatch that presumablly led to the roof of the structure.

"Doesn't seem like anything of use," said Maria, letting out a sigh of dissapointment, "but I do
have an idea for this door" as she took off to the middle of the store, kneeling down next to
one of the infected, digging in his pockets.

Paul came up to find Maria shuffling in the dead infected mans pockets.

"God, did he even buy you dinner?" joked Paul, letting out a sharp grin.
"O- you are such the gentleman aren't you," replied Maria sarcasticly, pulling out a ring of
keys, "but it looks like he got me a 'lil more than dinner."

Maria rushed over to the locked door, trying each key until one fit and turned to unlock the

"Ok, go when you're ready." said Paul, nodding for Maria to open the door.

Maria swung open the door, lifting her shotgun to greet anyone unfortunent enough to be on the
other side.

"Clear," said Paul, lowering Maria's shotgun with his hand as he entered the room.

Inside were lines of tools to the side of the walls, almost looking like a workshop of some sort
with a very large locker sized wall safe on the far side of the wall. Paul quickly tried the
handle of the safe to find that it too was locked by a key lock.

"Here," said Maria, now standing next to Paul, handing him the keys, "try one."

Paul tried every key until he found the one that disengaged the lock to the safe, opening it up

"I think THIS is what we can consider coming out pretty lucky" said Paul as his eyes sat on the
prizes of the safe.

Inside the very large wall safe sat a H&K UMP, H&K Mp5, a military model M4A1 with a holographic
site, forward hand rail, PEQ-2A infared laser sight, and flashlight attachments, a Remington
1100 Tactical-Shotgun, an FN SCAR and sets of magazines with some ammo for the weapons that were

"Its too bad we wont be able to take most of these," said Maria, killing Paul's mood
"Ugh, you couldn't wait a few more minutes to crush the inner-child in me?" replied Paul with a
stern tone. "Lets just take what we want to carry then, I got dibs on the UMP tho."
"Uhh, which one is that?" replied a clueless Maria.

Paul picked up the UMP, embracing the weapon and sticking it in front of him at port arms.

"THIS is the UMP!" said a happy Paul, cocking a big smile on his face.
"God, bet not even the prettiest woman on Earth could give you a smile that big," replied Maria,
slinging the Mossberg over her shoulder, picking up the FN SCAR, "but thats ok- I doubt any guy
could make more noise than this bad boy."
"Mee-oow." replied Paul, widening his smile.

Paul walked with swag to the mangers room, Maria following behind, both with now loaded weapons
as they observed the ladder.

"Why the fuck would they have a ladder in a building like this?" said Paul, breaking the
"A lot of the buildings here in downtown had these installed as a means of fire-escape back in
the early 1960's. I remember my papa's old store having one even. I use to spit on people from
the roof as they passed by," replied a now giggling Maria, laughing at the happy memory.
"Such a princess you are," said Paul, now walking towards the ladder, "at least you confirmed it
leads to the roof."

Paul began his short climb to the hatch, twisting open the latches and pushing it open to be met
by a burst of orange sun light.

"Following me or what?" asked Paul, looking down to Maria.
"I'm right behind you" replied Maria.

The two stood atop the single-story structure, finding that the roof was much larger than the
store they were just in.

Paul glanced around further, seeing the city consumed by chaos still. Smoke filled some parts of
the air, screams still being heard followed closely behind by distant and some not so distant
growls and screams of the infected.

"Smoke and screams- our kind of Disney Land" thought Paul to himself.
"Always turning shit into shiny shit, way to keep the spirit up" replied Paul to himself,
smiling a bit.

"Hey- you with me here or what- did you hear me?" said Maria, hip cocked out in irritation.
"No- sorry- whats up?" replied Paul, focusing now on Maria.
"I said that this building is attached to all the other buildings of this structure and I am
willing to bet that they all have roof top accesses." replied Maria, pointing towards the rest
of the stetch of roof.

Paul nodded as he motioned for Maria to follow him as he started to walk towards the side of the

"Looks like our welcoming party is still there." said Paul, pointing down at the mass of
infected still down below- now growling more furiously as they saw an exposed but elevated Paul
and Maria.
"Ya- we are fucking celebrities now. I wonder how many people are still alive if they are so
bored as to stay focused on us for so long" replied Maria, looking down.
"A question we don't need to worry 'bout unless it helps us. The rules of decentcy have changed,
we just need to stay alive," replied Paul- still gazing down below, taking in the roar of the
infected, "lets just check out what stores connect to here."

Upon a check of the four stores all connecting- the duo found a jewlery store (which caught
Maria's fancy- Paul having to sway her out of the temptation), a fashion clothing store, a
womens underwear store (another temptation for Maria) and a store labeled "Alamo Shooter
Supplies." Paul thought the choice was obvious which store to enter- all the while Maria still
had her eye on the jewlery store entry.

"Come over here and help me with this latch," said Paul, already gripping onto the lock release
latch that led into the store.

Maria came trotting over, eyes over her shoulder, still looking at the jewlery store entrance.
"Just put some back into it Mr. Macho," teased Maria as she helped pull back the latch, with the
combined effort, unlocking it, "I guess all we needed was a little bit of a womans touch!"
"Get your head in the game, we don't know how many are in here- we need to be mentally ready!"
Paul said sternly- killing the smile Maria had a second ago.
"You sure do know how to treat a lady don't you?" Maria said sarcastically.
"Ya- keeping them alive seems to be a good sign of showing that 'I care'." replied Paul sharply-
stepping down onto the ladder to enter the store.
Maria smiled to herself as she followed Paul into the semi-dark entry way to the store.

Paul stepped down onto the ground- taking out a flashlight and shining it around the room,
finding a light switch and illuminating the room. Maria stepped down into the lit room which
appeared to be an office room as the pawn shop had been. A desk sat in the corner of the room
with a computer on it, the blue light of the screensaver still shining. At the other end of the
room was the door that presumably led to the rest of the store.

"Alright, get ready to clear these things out- who knows what is behind the door" said Paul,
already stacking himself into position at the door.
Maria tightened her grip of the SCAR as she walked towards the door, putting one hand on the
door knob.

Maria swung open the door as Paul burst threw, checking left, right, left- confirming clear.
The store was lit in only a few areas- emergency lights that were on when the store was closed.
From what Paul could see- the store seemed normal.

"Clear, move up!" whispered Paul.

Maria moved forward, going left of Paul, approaching a wall to her left.

"Here we go," said Maria as she flipped a switch, lighting up the entire store.

Paul scanned the area, the ailes not giving too much room for anything to hide in, giving him a
sense of ease. With some more concertration into the surroundings- he also saw the exterior
metal gate had been closed and locked. The store was secure.

"It must have been closed when the outbreak started" said Paul, dropping his weapon from the
"And now it keeps getting better! I wonder what crazy guns they have in a place like this!" said
Maria- quickly going behind the counter in search of loot.

Paul continued to examine the store- seeing that the ailes were filled mainly with combat gear
and shooting accessories.

"Hey, what gives?! There is just ammo here- no guns!" said Maria in a whining voice.
"Thats because this is an ammo/army surplus store- not a gun store it seems. The only guns here
are for display and fake" replied Paul, walking towards some of the equipment,"but this is still
a great find- we will need some equipment like this to adapt to our new more hostile
"Well we could go to that clothing store...maybe even touch it up with some jewlery!" said Maria
"Only if you want to trip over a pair of high heels and get eaten. Not part of my plan" replied
Paul, still checking out the equipment.
"And what exactly is your plan, huh?" replied Maria, again cocking her hip out to the side.
Paul smiled to himself, taking a breath.

With the help of Paul's military prowess- Maria suited up into a proper set of boots, a drop-leg
holster for the Glock 19 that Paul handed over to her, utility combat pants, a light UnderArmour
undershirt and fitted up an LBV (load bearing vest) and attached several magazine pouches and
lined the shoulders with 12 gauge shell holders. Paul fitted the equipment onto Maria perfectly-
already looking as if she was an expierenced warrior.

Paul as well fitted into similar gear- attaching several various attachments to his LBV to
ensure maximum effeciency as well as mobility. Finding two water hydration systems, the two
strapped the on their backs- Paul finding great comfort in the find as well as Ear-Protection
gear. Emptying his ammo bag he had from his car onto the main counter- Paul replaced it with a
more fitting military Rucksack- finding more room to carry the various types and amounts of ammo
that the store was full of, food and weapon (Glock 21SF) contained- not to mention the spare
sets of socks (which Paul stressed the essential nature of almost to the point of being

"Well- I think that just about does it. We are now officially 'high speed'" said Paul with a
wide smile.
"Hopefully that means we can get the hell out of here quicker" replied Maria with a grin,
already heading back to the roof entrance.

The two reached the roof- walking back towards the Pawn Shop entrance in their newly suited
gear. Growls and screams still pierced the air with the violent noices of the infected below.

"I don't know if I am going to be able to sleep with all of these fuckers doing that all night-
it is pretty unsettlin'" said Paul, glancing over the edge.
"Than do something about it!" replied Maria with a wink.

Paul smiled hard- setting down the UMP and rucksack- jogging over to the pawn shop roof

"Go back to Alamo's and grab as much .30-06 rifle ammo as you can carry- I will meet ya back up
here" replied Paul as he decended into the store.

Maria stood in place for a second- finally shrugging and doing as Paul requested. Going down the
ladder- she ran behind the stores counter, searching out and finding the boxes labeled
"Remington .30-06 165Gr," grabbing as much as she could carry. As she made her way back to the
roof- Paul waited at the edge closest to her with the two .30-06 rifles on bipods, sitting in
mounted position. Maria showed Paul the ammo, Paul nodded in satisfaction.

"Good- now we get to our sleep insurance policy. Load one up and lets get to work!" said Paul
with another crazy smile- highly anticipating the shooting to be.

Paul demonstrated on his own rifle how to load the rifle, Maria following suit, loading, and
without notice- firing into the infected massed below- sending one down with a shot to the
frontal lobe- brain matter showering the infected around him.

"Wooo! Holy shit, good shot- way to warn me tho!" said Paul, going prone behind his rifle-
putting on his Ear-Pro.

A shot rang out from Pauls's rifle as another infected dropped to the ground, slowly decending
to the ground as it didn't even know what hit it.

Maria looked over to Paul with a warm smile as the two made eye contact. Aiming in again- Maria
let out another shot- connecting to an infected womans shoulder- sending her spiraling to the

"What a fucked up way to bond and have fun" thought Paul to himself with another warm smile as
he sent another infected down.

The two shot on until the sun was fully set- sending at least 22 of the infected permanently
down. Their rifles were smoking from such intensive firing- the barrels giving a light orange glow, visible
in the shallow, fading darkness.

"Well- night time I guess- where do you wanna sleep?" asked Paul, taking a knee behind his
"Up here would be nice- I haven't slept under the sky for a long time" replied Maria with a

Paul nodded as he stood and went down to the pawnshop- retrieving the two sleeping bags they had
found earlier. As he was unrolling them, Maria took out large pieces of bread and soda- eating
one and passing the second the Paul who in turn devoured the meal. After eating- Maria saw that
Paul left a decent size gap inbetween the sleeping bags.

"Why did you put the sleeping bags so far apart- do I smell or something?" asked Maria with a
"No- I just thought you'd like some privacy- some space or something" replied Paul innocently as
he took off his boots, getting half way into the sleeping bag.

Maria scooted her bag right next to Paul's, taking off her boots, getting into the sleeping bag
and draping one arm across Paul, giving his a small kiss on the shoulder.

"Thank you. For everything" said Maria quietly as she leaned against Paul and closed her eyes.

Paul felt warm inside. Leaning back- he looked into the sky- smoke still drifting in front of
the stars on occassion- but a sense of peace reaching Paul. He didn't even hear the growls and
screams of THEM down below as he closed his eyes, drifting into sleep with one final thought.

"I just wonder how long it will be until all of this comes crashing down on her."

Stay Tuned Next Week For Them And They: The Zombie Apocalypse Chapter 5!!

Thanks for reading!