I have decided to write this diary for reasons that are hard to explain. I am Unit 4, of Squad J-14 of the Special Operations of the Supernatural. I am silent. I cannot speak.
The reasons for this I will explain.
My parents were killed when I was five. Right in front of me. In the same room.
They were killed by an axe. Decapitation. Their blood soaked my clothing and I ran away until I couldn't run any more.
Then I was found by the Director of the SOS.
My parents were not held down. They were not touched by anything but the axe. The man - the mage - could control how the body works. He made my parents put their heads on our kitchen table then he swung the axe down.
As for why I'm telling you this, the mage also disabled my ability to talk. So I couldn't tell anyone what happened or who he was.
It's a curse. There is nothing good about it. There's a barrier between me and everyone else, preventing me from being considered their equal.
Because I can't even ask for a drink when I go to a cafe.
All I can do is nod or shake my head or point at things. I can't even mumble. I can't even sigh. I can do nothing.
I am hopeless.
At least you, diary, are the only person who I can talk to.
Page 2045 - Written After The Events Described Upon Their Arrival Of The SOS Into Tehran
We arrived at the flat a few hours later. We were coated in blood, and dead zombies were all over the bus.
At least Tara was alive, as were we.
We chose a flat on the top floor. If you want a better word, it was a bugger to get up and down. I was panting by the time I got to the top. We cleared out all the zombies in the flats and those around, using our knives and Tara's shotgun which she didn't even know how to use. She had plenty of ammunition, though, so it was good.
We reinforced the entrance to the flat with some car doors we hijacked from nearby vehicles. We also covered the windows in planks of wood and fastened them down with nails and other sharp things we could find.
Then it was down to business. We cleaned the blood off our armour and helmets and sat down on some chairs that were in our flat.
The flat was nice. It was very expensive. It had a television that couldn't get a signal, an en suite bathroom, four bedrooms and a large kitchen. It had electricity, too, which was useful. The fridge was full of food, and there was a microwave pizza in the freezer.
I pointed it out and they wrote my name on it. I like eating pizza. Pizza is nice. It was a pepperoni one, too, which was an added bonus.
"So," Unit 1 said to Tara, "Who are you?"
Tara shrugged, "I'm Tara Rhodes. I came to stay with some friends in Tehran, then this happened. I managed to escape and ran on to the road - which is when you turned up."
"Where did you get the shotgun from?" asked Unit 2.
"I found it. I don't know anything about guns... I didn't even know how to fire it. I hit a zombie with it, though... you have no idea how glad I am you turned up. Who are you?"
"We're with the SOS. A special branch of the British government. We deal with things like this," replied Unit 3.
"How about him?" Tara asked, pointing her finger at me, "Who doesn't he talk?"
"He can't," Unit 1 pointed out, "No one knows why."
I immediately felt sad. She sounded scared of me. I felt guilty and sad and annoyed at myself for being unable to talk. My head seemed to hang down by itself.
I turned to my doodle page in my diary and started drawing a Porsche. Something about a Porsche 911 GT3 RS really clicked with me. I always see a white one around. A white Porsche 911, with the same number plate and everything.
I wonder what it means. It's a private registration plate, but it isn't a word I recognise. I like that Porsche. I see it every day. I want one.
Tara leaned over and took a look at my doodle page. I let her. I wasn't protective over this page in you, diary.
"That's a nice tree," she said as I finished drawing the front of the car.
I wanted to thank her. But I couldn't. So I nodded slowly then went back to my drawing.
Drawing calms me. Whenever I feel bad I just draw whatever comes to my mind and it helps me so much. As does writing in you, diary. You help more than you can ever know.
"We need a plan," Unit 1 pointed out.
Times like that I wished that someone could reverse my curse. I might try and go and see a magical scientist after we've finished in Tehran. It's my dream to be able to talk. I don't ask for much, only a Porsche and to be able to speak.
I don't ask for much.
"I think the best place to start would be the weapon's facility where the accident occured," Unit 2 said, "There may be some clues. Maybe we can develop a cure. Maybe they have a cure."
I waved my hand at them and pointed at my stomach. It was rumbling like crazy. I was hungry. It was about nine o'clock at night, and I hadn't eaten all day.
"Ok," said Unit 3, "I'll put you the pizza into the microwave."
I nodded excitedly.
He walked over to the freezer and took out the small pepperoni pizza. He took off the packaging then put it into the microwave, then turned the dial until the specified time on the box and set it going.
I stood up and took a few steps towards Unit 1. I grasped a remote Claymore from his belt and pointed to it. While we slept, if we put one of the Claymores outside the door and set it up, then no zombies would be able to get in and we'd be able to deactivate them before we went out in the morning.
"Good idea, 4," Unit 1 said as Unit 3 got my pizza out of the microwave and put it on a clear glass plate. He handed it to me as Unit 1 went and put the claymore outside the door and activated it.
I raised the glass of my visor. They couldn't see my face because of the angle I had it at, but I was able to reach my mouth with the pizza.
I took my first bite.
Wow it tasted good...
I sat there eating my pizza as they continued.
"I think we should get some sleep now," Unit 1 said, "We're going to the weapon's facility tomorrow in a city full of zombies. We need to be at full strength."
I nodded to that. I was tired. I finished the last of my pizza.
"Uh..." Tara said, "There are only four bedrooms..."
Unit 3 laughed, "We're in the middle of a zombie apocalypse and she's worrying about privacy."
I tapped her on the shoulder. She turned towards me and I pointed at myself, then the sofa.
"I think he's offering to let you have the bedroom and he'll sleep on the sofa," Unit 2 pointed out. I nodded in agreement.
"Are you sure?" Tara asked, "I'll sleep on the sofa if you want."
I shook my head, then pointed to her and the bedroom.
"Thanks," she said with a smile.
"Ok," Unit 2 said, tilting his head, "Goodnight everyone."
The rest of the squad and Tara distributed themselves in the bedrooms, having one each, whilst I curled up on the sofa. I was used to English weather - which, if you don't know, diary, is absolutely terrible. So I didn't even need a blanket. I was perfectly warm. And, anyway, my armour provided thermal protection so I was fine anyway.
I rested my helmet against the arm of the sofa and tried to get to sleep.
Everything was quiet. Too quiet. There was not a single sound coming from inside the flats and none outside. However, I could hear a faint scratching noise from downstairs. The zombies were trying to get in, though they weren't strong enough to get through the barricades we had set up. And they definitely couldn't get past the claymores.
I drifted in and out of dreaming several times before my mind went into an uneasy sleep. Zombies plagued my nightmares just as they were a trouble when I was awake.
Day 2 - 9:08am, I think
Hello diary. We're just about to set out to the weapon's facility of which we have the co-ordinates. It isn't far away, but I just thought I'd make another diary entry before we set out. The negative part of my mind says 'in case you never return', but as long as I trust my training and just kill all the zombies and make sure the rest of my squad - and Tara - are alright, everything should be fine.
The night went well. The zombies didn't get through the blockages and the claymore didn't explode. My back hurts a little after sleeping on the sofa but other than that I'm fine. I
"Come on, 4. Grab your gun and let's go," said Unit 1.
Unit 4 nodded.
have to go. I'll write again when we get back to the flat.
By the way, I had frosties for breakfast.
Unit 4 made sure the diary was turned back to the front page then put it into the kitchen drawer so no one could see it. He grabbed his M4 and checked it was fully loaded, then put his knife in a sheath on his belt. His MP5 came next. He checked it was loaded then put it into a holster, and did the same to his M9.
Unit 1 smiled inside his helmet, "Hurry up Silence. You'll be late."
Unit 4 nodded and rushed through the door to the flat. He presumed Unit 1 had deactivated the claymore as it didn't explode as he came near it.
Squad J-14 jogged down the flights of stairs until they reached the bottom.
As they exited, Unit 2 cocked his head then said to Tara, "I've been meaning to ask you something. You said something was after you... what was it?"
Tara suddenly went pale. "I... I don't know," she said, "It was dark and they moved so quickly... I just ran..."
"Was it a zombie?"
"Zombies don't move that fast. It was black, whatever it was," Tara replied.
There were a group of zombies gathered outside a building to their left. It was a butchers. They had already torn through the glass and blood was gathered outside as they devoured the flesh of the uncooked animals that they had inside the shop.
Unit 4 took out his pistol and shot each of the zombies in the head, not wasting any bullets. The empty bullet casings hit the floor at the same time as the zombies. He holstered the pistol again.
The weapon's facility was only around a five-minute walk. Just by chance, the trip to the flat had given unexpected fruit - they could have explored the weapon's facility while only walking for a short period of time, so it reduced the amount of zombies they'd have to face on their journey.
"When we get to the facility," Unit 1 said, creating a plan inside his mind, "We'll split up. If there are any buildings nearby, Unit 2, 3 and Tara, you'll go and secure one of the buildings next to it and make sure that no zombies are entering behind us. Use the radios if you run into trouble and Unit 4 and myself will come and help."
"Roger that," said Unit 3.
They arrived less than ten minutes later. Luckily, as Unit 1 suspected, there was a house next to the secret weapon's facility.
Unit 2, 3 and Tara broke off from them and moved to secure the house as Unit 1 and 4 moved towards the large stone tunnel that led towards the facility.
There were zombies nearby, plenty, but the undead just seemed to ignore them. They didn't even respond to a normal gunshot from one of their pistols.
Something weird was going on.
As soon as Unit 1 and 4 entered the tunnel, the daylight turned to darkness. They clicked on the tactical lights on their rifles so they could see.
It was empty. Apart from graffiti on the wall. It read, "Beware of The Dark Shadow". It looked to be written in blood.
They ignored it. It was probably some teenagers deciding to vandalise the building, not even knowing it was a weapon's facility.
"We need to move in deeper," Unit 1 said, "The facility is a few minutes away. I don't know why the power is off. Maybe it went on automatic shut-down."
Unit 4 nodded.
So they did move down deeper. It got colder and colder. It was definitely below freezing. Luckily their armour provided some protection from the cold.
The only way they could find their way in the darkness was by pointing their guns where they wanted to walk. Everything else was hidden.
There was a crashing sound beneath Unit 1's foot. He swore, spun and quickly aimed down the sight on his weapon.
With a sigh of relief, he realised he had accidentally kicked a can of Iranian coke.
Unit 4, meanwhile, was tilting his head curiously.
"Sorry," Unit 1 said, "I can't see, remember?"
They continued going deeper. The temperature still dropped.
Unit 4 walked into a metal door. He didn't make a noise, just took a step back and pointed the light at it.
"This is the way in," Unit 1 said, "Let's go."
Unit 2 had his gun rested on the window sill, aiming down at the zombies that had suddenly decided to mass outside the tunnel entrance. They weren't moving, only slowly moving from one foot to the other in drifting movements and looking towards the tunnel.
"Unit 1, this is Unit 2. Something weird is happening with the zombies. You'll have to find a way out. Over."
There was an immediate response, "Roger that 2."
Tara was sat next to him in a rocking chair. She rocked slowly, her face pale like she had seen too much.
Unit 2 agreed. If he was less-trained, he'd be scared too.
Unit 3, meanwhile, was laid at the top of the stairs, aiming his gun so he could shoot any zombies that decided it was a good idea to try and get to the top and eat them.
A song started playing. Loudly.
'Don't stop me now' by Queen. It was coming from an unknown source and was so loud, Unit 2's ears were hurting. Even inside the helmet.
'Tonight, I'm gonna have myselfff, a real good time, I feel aliii-iii-iii-iiiveee. And the world, is turning inside out, yeah. I'm floating around, in exstasy so don't stop me now...'
All the zombies turned towards them.
"Fuck," Unit 2 cursed then began firing. Bullets tore open the mass of zombies, through their heads and everything, and yet they still didn't drop. There were slight pinging noises as the bullet casings hit the floor.
The zombies started moving in their direction.
'I'm a shooting star, leaping through the skies, like a tiger, defying the laws of gravittyyy. I'm a racing car, passing by, like Lady Godiva. I'm gonna go, go, go, there's no stopping me...'
They reached the the ground floor of the house and burst in through the windows and doors. He heard silenced gunshots as Unit 3 began firing his M4 towards the zombies lumbering up the stairs.
Still, none dropped.
'Don't, stop me now...'
The weapon's facility was certainly dark. They couldn't see anything apart from what their lights showed them.
There were chemical machines and partical colliders and all the latest technology. And yet there were no bodies.
"Ahhhh," hissed a voice, a dark voice, "The SOSsss. I knew you would turn uppppp."
"Who is there?" Unit 1 asked urgently, sweeping the light back and forth. Nothing. Only darkness.
"I am the darknessssss. I am your nightmaresssss. I am deathhhhhhh. I am the devillllll..."
"Show yourself or I'll shoot," he demanded urgently, feeling a twinge of fear inside.
"You're the bosssss..." the voice whispered.
Something black flickered in front of him. He turned the light towards it.
It was a dark humanoid with white triangular eyes and thin, sharp fangs. It screamed at him, the lower half of its face stretching more than humanly possible.
Unit 1 swore loudly, then it tripped him over and he fell to the floor. Before he landed, however, he had already unleashed several bullets from his M4.
The creature had vanished.
"Not quick enough, hmmmm?" the voice hissed again, "Let me see how your frrieennnddd reacctssssssss."
Something black flickered in front of Unit 4.
4, however, seemed to be ready.
It screamed at him. A high-pitched, hissing scream that pierced all the darkness and the very inch of both of their souls.
It didn't seem to have an affect on Unit 4, though. He slammed his helmet into the creature and dark tendrils flew all over the room.
"What the fuck are you?" Unit 1 asked, "Answer me this time!"
He climbed to his feet.
The creature laughed demonically.
"Figure out that for yoursssellffff..."
"You're a bloody ugly mother fucker, that's what you are."
"Perhapssss I am. Perhapsss I am not. Perhapsssss my mummy never tolddd me to not play with my fooooddd..."
"Come on, 4. We're leaving."
"Not so ssssoooooon, are youuu?"
The darkness flickered and Unit 1 suddenly went flying across the room and collided with the wall with a heavy thunk. He got to his feet again and sweeped his weapon left and right to try and see the creature of darkness.
Unit 4 had it in his sight for a moment. He fired and the gunshot lit up the shadows for less time than it took for 4 to blink.
They both began firing, spraying the room with lead.
Once the final bullet casing hit the floor from their quick burst, everything was silent.
"My turn nowwwww..."
Darkness infused with Unit 1's very personality. He became angry and sadistic and suddenly exploded with uncontrollable rage. He lashed out at Unit 4, who was completely taken unawares.
Unit 4 spun and dropped to the floor, silently. But he was up again in a moment.
The darkness was gone.
"Oh shit!" Unit 1 screamed as pain blasted through his body. His very spirit. He dropped to the floor and managed to hear Unit 4 doing the same through the screaching pain. It tore through his brain. Tore through his muscles. Tore through every fibre of his very being.
He was frozen in place by the pain. His hands were chained and he was unable to move.
And all of a sudden, it stopped.
Unit 1 groaned and remained on the floor. Unit 4 wasn't moving, either.
He curled up into a ball and he felt the shadows surround him.
The creature swirled into life from the darkness, looking down on him. It licked its lips with a long, pink tongue.
"Ssseee what I can doooo?" it hissed, "You have no magiccccc..."
Shadows gripped at his throat and threw him against the wall. He collapsed to the floor again, still trying to recover from all the pain that the creature had forced upon him. His vision faded but came back to life a second later. Stars were flashing behind his eyes.
"You think you know Necromancyyyyy?" it screached, "I am Necromancyyyyy. I am darknesssss... I am The Dark Shadow..."
Unit 1 slowly rose to his feet, using his M4 as a walking stick. He drew his pistol.
"And you know what shadows fear?" he asked, gritting his teeth.
"What is thattttt?" hissed The Dark Shadow.
Unit 4 switched his tactical light on full power. Harsh white light blasted across the room, scattering the creature in all directions as it dived for cover.
Unit 1 hobbled out of the room with Unit 4 behind him. 4 fired several bullets into the weapon's facility as they exited and went back to the tunnel, moving as fast as possible, and yet neither willing to leave Unit 1 behind.
Tara screamed as the zombies entered the room. Unit 3 had fallen back to the bedroom where Unit 2 and Tara were.
The first zombie dropped after a bullet from Unit 3's pistol to the back of the spine. Unit 2 opened fire on the ones inside the room and they fell like dominoes.
However, there were too many.
"The window!" shouted Unit 3, trying to be heard over the music, "Go! Now! I'll buy you some time!"
Unit 3 threw his pistol at the zombies, followed a few seconds later by a grenade that rolled down the stairs. He switched to his MP5 and moved so he was in front of the window as Unit 2 and Tara leaped out, smashing the glass on their way.
Unit 2 landed in a roll and came up, spraying bullets back at the zombies who were still getting into the house. Tara scraped down a small balcony on the second floor and then landed with a large cut down her arm and the side of her clothing worn away in several places. She moved so she was behind Unit 2.
Unit 2 aimed back up at the window and fired rounds at several zombies who were in his sight. An explosion rocked the house and he saw through the bottom window that the stairs had given way.
Back in the bedroom, Unit 3 reloaded his MP5 and began firing again, the zombies getting closer and closer by the minute. They were dropping like flies, but there were just too many. He knew that.
A zombie grabbed him and pushed him against the wall. He drew his knife and stabbed it in the neck and pushed it all the way through. The blade destroyed the connections to the brain in the spine so it slumped to the floor.
He launched another grenade, this one landing inside the bedroom after bouncing off a zombie's head. He still didn't stop firing.
Unit 3 took a step back towards the window, and then realised his back was pressed against it. He had no more space to give.
Still, the zombies got closer.
He dropped to one knee and began firing at their legs. Many dropped and started crawling towards him instead.
He swore, took out a claymore from his belt and pushed it down on to the floor. Just as the grenade exploded.
And a zombie stood on the claymore in front of him.
There was a flash, then only blackness.
Unit 1 and 4 just emerged from the tunnel as the house exploded. No one, and nothing, emerged.
"No!" Tara cried.
"I'm getting closerrrrr," the creature hissed from inside the tunnel.
"We need to go," Unit 1 said, "Now. Run."
"But..." Tara began.
"No. No buts. GO."
They locked themselves in the flat and made sure that as many lights were on as possible. Unit 4 was shivering with fear but he immediately went to his diary.
Unit 3 was my friend.
They are all my friends.
And whatever the hell it was that was down there, I think it's going to kill all of us.
The way it just threw us around and manipulated us... it's too powerful.
Tara seems the most affected by Unit 3's death. Maybe it's because we're trained or something. I don't know. She is snuggled against me as I'm writing this, shivering the same as I am.
"We're not going back there," Unit 1 has just said, "We are never going back there."
"What if it's chasing us?" Unit 2 asked, "We can't do anything."
"I'm going to radio Spectre. See if he can come and help," Unit 1 told him.
I've put my arm around Tara. See if it can comfort her. I can't say anything and that hurts just as much as Unit 3 dying.
Some people feel guilty when the last thing they say to people are bad things. I can't feel that. I feel guilty because I never got the chance to say anything to him. Nothing. I am worthless. I can't even talk to my friends.
Tara is now looking over my shoulder at what I'm writing... I don't mind. I'm not sure whether it's because I just don't care any more or because it's her who is looking. I like Tara.
She may have shown up out of nowhere, but I like her.
And she's seen that.
But it's not like I mind.
She has a cut on her arm that looks painful. It definitely needs medical attention. We all have a medic kit that contains a needle and metal thread for stitching things up. I might use it.
"I think it does need stitching up," she has just said to me.
Sorry, diary, stitching someone up. Will talk later.
"So what do you think that creature was?" Unit 2 has just asked. Alike to the rest of us, he is also affected by Unit 3's death. No one is making jokes.
I've decided I'm going to quit the SOS. I don't know how I'll manage real life, but it's better than losing my friends. When, wait, if, I get back, then I'm quitting.
I've always wanted to be a racer. So I'll join a street-racing club. Earn a reputation, then maybe go into professional racing. Maybe. I've fought one side of the law, so why not be on the other side for a change?
"That's a nice dream," Tara has just told me. I smile inside my helmet. I don't know whether she likes me too or... if she feels sorry for me. Lots of people feel sorry for me. Sometimes I feel sorry for myself.
The cut on her arm wasn't too bad. It wasn't very deep, but it definitely needed stitches. I had written down on a blank page whether she wanted me to do it or one of the remaining squad members.
She had replied she wanted me to do it. I'm not sure why.
I did the best job I could and the wound will heal without a scar.
She is still sat next to me, and reading what I'm writing. I think we're comforting each other. I can't say anything to her but she's talking to me. She's talking about her life back in England.
Apparently she had been a receptionist for a large company known as FMJ. It was a weapon's manufacturer who specialised in the most futuristic type of weaponry possible. They were pioneers in laser technology and plasma guns and made prototypes for the government.
I think talking is helping her. She seems to be... not happy, but better. You can tell she has been crying.
Spectre had told Unit 1 that the rest of his squad were dead and he was moving towards our position. They had been tortured, then killed, by The Dark Shadow.
So our squad weren't the only ones who had met it.
I'm scared to go to sleep. Darkness means... shadows. It said it was the shadows. Shadows mean the creature.
And I am scared of the creature.
I don't want to face it again. But I know I have to. I'm going to kill it. No matter how long it takes. I will destroy the creature.
Tara has just read the thing about not wanting to go to sleep. So she suggested to Unit 1 and 2 that we should keep the lights on all night.
We've decided tomorrow that we'll be going to scout across the city. We're determined to destroy The Dark Shadow - at any cost.
Unit 2 has just cleared his throat, "You say you saw The Dark Shadow in the weapon's facility?"
"Yep. He was in there," Unit 1 has replied.
"Well at about the same time, the zombies around the facility turned immortal. And as you were leaving they were able to be killed again."
"We need to make a list of all its powers. And if we run into it again, we need to add more."
"It can control zombies," Unit 2 has pointed out, "And make them indestructible."
"And it can control people's feelings - even pain."
Tara has just pointed out that it has a weakness to light. I noticed nothing had any affect on it except for the light, too. So the best weapon we have against it is our tactical lights.
I'm ready to go to sleep. Today has been... tiring. Emotionally and physically.
Everyone else is ready for bed, too.