Standing next to Bort’s crate, alone and surrounded by the infected, I feared there was no escape; that I was done for, that there would never be another day beyond this one.  And that’s when it happened.  Out of nowhere, a strange and naked man dropped from above, wearing only a ninja’s mask and belt, and he pushed me back while waving a box of chocolate in the air.

“Go!” yelled the nudist ninja.

The mouths of the infected began to froth and foam as they cooed and clawed at the air, and, taking this moment to escape, I turned and ran in the other direction.

When I got outside, the smell of chocolate was already beginning to attract an even angrier, hungrier mob of Erickoeys, but beyond the cluster of infected I could see Bort, who had climbed a tree and hidden within its branches.  I wasted no time and darted toward him, dodging infected after infected like they were the projectiles in a game of dodge ball.  However, when I came to the tree and stared up its large, wooden shaft I could no longer move.  How could I have not noticed this sooner?  Why-oh-why had I not noticed this sooner!?

Bort, just like the nudist ninja, was as naked as a newborn on his birthday.  The reason for this was unknown, but I was certain it had something to do with the infected, that there was some important reason for it, that it somehow gave you an advantage… So I undressed as fast as I could!

“Ewwwwwww! Stop it you pervert!” Bort screamed in horror as I nudily shimmied up the tree’s trunk.  “What ARE you doing?!”

“I…” I scratched at my behind and pondered for a moment as I stared up at Bort, “I… don’t know, it’s just…”

“You are trying to seduce me!  I’m telling!” the boy said angrily and kicked his heels at my head as I tried to sit on a nearby branch.

“No, no, Bort!  I’m… I thought…”

Just then, the nudist ninja reappeared in a tree, about three branches above my head.  “What on earth are you doing?!” he asked me.  “Put on your clothes, you creep!”

My cheeks boiled with embarrassment and confusion, and a little bit of disappointment, and I slid back down the trunk to redress myself.  “We should get moving,” I said, hoping to avoid any more conflict.  “A chopper’s going to pick us up over at the top of the U.S. Bank Tower.  It arrives every day at noon until we arrive, but only stays for five minutes.  If we hurry, we can make it!”

The nudist ninja shook his head.  “Nuh-uh.  I haven’t seen a thing in the air since the quarantine.  What makes you think we’re going to trust you?”

“Excuse me?!” I took offense.  “You’re the one that was keeping a child locked away in a box!”

“I was protecting him!”

“Yeah!” shouted Bort.  “Wait, what?!  You big meanie!  I’m going with the funny little green man!” >:o

After that I wasn’t going to stick around and let Bort change his mind again, so the two of us quickly ran away from the creepy nudist ninja and ventured toward the city’s core.

Fortunately, and leaving me quite surprised, two blocks later we were entering the downtown area and could already see the U.S. Bank Tower!  And, of course, that’s when Mother Nature decided to balance things out.  As we approached the building we discovered that it was surrounded by thousands of the infected.  There were so many that it looked like a sea of chocolate… Let’s just hope it’s not real chocolate, otherwise both Bort and myself are screwed!

But what happened next was what really slapped me in the face…


To be continued.

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