This is the Part Two premiere of the Haunted MTL Original The Dead Life. The need for supplies weighs heavy on Dani Kim this week. Re-read the previous installment here.

This is a serialized novel of post-apocalyptic zombie survival. Learn more about the story and setting at the series hub and take advantage of a complete list of installments.

The Dead Life section break for story about need for supplies

Day 25

It had been more than a week of relative calm for the residents of the U-Stor-It. At least, by Dani’s count. The group had kept a tight watch from the roof directly on the corner of Lyon and Acacia, careful of ghoul movements. Beyond small clusters, the streets had been relatively silent.

The drug store raid had been a success and the supplies had helped ease their minds. Another run, this time to the dollar mart a couple of days prior, had born a decent supply of canned goods. Best of all, the trip went on without a hitch. So much so that Dani and Edgar had even managed to fill some bags with supplies they couldn’t carry back then and hid them out of sight for a future supply run.

Dani sat in her trailer, enjoying the reprieve of privacy. In the time she’d been here with the others, there were several swaps and trades regarding the on-site RVs. With the arrival of Mary and her daughter, Alica, Dani had given them the larger one she had been staying in, opting for an old airstream. Dani wasn’t much for comforts these days. A door and a mattress were about as much as she needed.

Her trailer was tucked just in front of one of the indoor storage areas, which was little more than a concrete structure with several small, closet-sized units. This was where the residents had kept the supplies, and Dani held the key and the watch. The decision to lock them away was not popular, but everyone accepted it.

By most, anyway. Sandy Gunderson had voiced her concerns over the lock for the past two days. Everyone knew Sandy had snuck a bag of goods while unloading the last supply run, but everyone kept silent. The less she had to complain about and the more time she spent in the apartment above the rental office, the better.

Dani stepped outside of her trailer. The airstream was planted firmly against the concrete wall along the eastern half of the lot. She had mounted a pop-up canopy over the entrance and braced it with a chest of drawers, a cabinet, and a bucket of nails. Some lawn furniture and a ratty roll of astroturf turned it into a rudimentary room. It wasn’t much to look at, but the shade was nice.

From her “porch,” she could see Mary and Alicia’s trailer, a couple of dozen feet ahead, parked much like her trailer against the wall. Alicia Edwards was sitting on the RV’s roof, reading a book. She saw Dani and waived to her, and Dani responded in kind. She liked the kid. Mary was out of sight, most likely inside. The broken leg from the drug store was a mess. They had done as much for her as possible. Dani would check in later.

Directly across from them was one of the clusters of units sat the shitty brown Cadillac of Jimmy DeWitt and Edgar Rosas. They had opted to claim eight units for their own needs. This was in addition to one of the smaller indoor areas between the cluster that housed six 12 smaller closets.

Dani made her way toward Jimmy’s cluster but was caught off guard by how quickly Alicia had climbed down from the RV. The kid was agile.

“Ms. Kim, I saw a big crowd of those things in the neighborhood behind us.”

“How big of a crowd?”

“It was tough to count them all, but I saw at least ten on the street, between the houses. Not counting the ones in the windows. It’s so weird seeing them up in those rooms like that.”

“Good eye. I am glad you’re keeping an eye on this side of the place. I know Bob appreciates the help.”

“Oh, speaking of Mr. Clark, could you take this book back to him? I’m done with it, and I don’t want to get too far away from my mom right now.”

Dani took the book from Alicia. She flipped it over in her hands and noticed it was a torn and stained copy of Dracula.

“I liked it, but the vampire felt a bit too… well, real. You know?”

Dani nodded. “Will you be borrowing a new one from him later?”

“Could you pick for me?”

Dani smiled. “Sure, I’ll pick up a repair manual.”

“Hah.”

The two stood in silence. The sounds of birds and insects brought a sense of calm. The February mornings were cold, but Emmet was a town in a desert in many respects, no matter how many orange groves had been there 80 years ago.

“Alicia. How is your mom?”

“Her leg is still pretty fucked up.”

Dani’s eyes widened at the statement. Alicia shrugged.

“I’m 15.”

Dani laughed. “I know. I know. Sorry. I was just thinking about how my parents would have flipped had I dropped the ‘f-word’ on them.”

“You can’t even say it now, Ms. Kim.”

“Fuck off, smartass.”

The Dead Life section break for story about need for supplies

Did you enjoy this installment of the story? How do you think the system they opt for regarding supplies will work out for them? Let us know what you think and what supplies would be your zombie apocalypse necessity.

The Dead Life is a Haunted MTL original fiction series.

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About the Author

David Davis is a writer, cartoonist, and educator in Southern California with an M.A. in literature and writing studies.

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