Chapter 1: "Danke Schoen"
Der Riese - Courtyard
Dr. Edward Richtofen
October 14th, 1945
“Warning, the Shield is now active. Find and destroy the designated materials and report to the barracks, this is not a drill.”
The ground began to rumble as Der Riese erupted with commotion and the facility entered its emergency status. The intercom repeated the warning message as it blared a siren throughout the grounds. Beneath the siren's aching tones were the clomping of boots on gravel and concrete as Group 935's scientists scattered. Amidst the confusion stood the man directly responsible for the incident, Doctor Edward Richtofen. As the others clamored for safety, Richtofen stood tall, ready to initiate his contingency plan with ultimate confidence.
“Ah, guten afternoon Doctor Weber! You look stressed.”
Before Richtofen stood a bewildered Doctor Weber, the sweat glistening off his bald head as he had been running from the upper laboratories to the courtyard.
“Doctor Richtofen! The test subjects... they've escaped. We-we have to destroy the Nova canisters... und the-”
In a jovial tone, Richtofen took Doctor Weber's shoulders, and in attempt to calm him, stated, “Calm down, will you! You're making everyone else nervous as well, look at them all!”
“But Doctor Maxis-”
“Do not worry your little head with that. It is imperative you reach the barracks before the electro-shock defenses activate. Doctor Maxis would understand. You remember that... deal we discussed, ja? When the Soviets arrive, they will need your help.”
“Yes, of course. But, where is Doctor Maxis?”
“Oh, who knows? He's probably crushing someone's dreams in the barracks as we speak.”
“Thank you, Doctor Richtofen, are you coming?”
“I have business to attend to, elsewhere, Doctor Weber. Let the others know to ignore protocol und go to the barracks! I care very deeply about your survival!”
“An excellent lie, Edward.”
Richtofen gripped the sides of his own head. “Shhhhhh!!!”
“I didn't say anything.”
“Ja, ja, neither did I. Just get going, Doctor! Schnell!”
The naive Doctor Weber continued towards the courtyard, informing other scientists on the same path of Richtofen's orders. Richtofen continued in the opposite direction, towards the laboratories and storage facility.
“You will need access to find them, Edward. Follow the chaos and you will find your way.”
“Ah, a good idea for once, voices!”
Just up ahead, he heard the sound of gunfire from handguns and the familiar shrieking and snarling of the test subjects. Turning a corner, he had arrived at a living quarters for prisoners of war used for testing. Before him was a panicked young security officer firing his Walther down the hallway towards a crowd full of screams of both agony and hunger for flesh. Richtofen approached the officer, outstretching his index finger towards the crowd.
“Excuse me, you seem to be in need of assistance with that, ja?”
“Yes! We need to destroy the last of the living subjects here before we can leave. Just- Hey! Pick up that gun over there!”
The officer pointed towards the corpse of a fellow security agent, whose neck had been chewed leaving him lifeless with his Walther by his side.
Richtofen approached the body, kneeling down and taking the gun. It fit in his hand like a glove. “Do you happen to have a level four keycard, Herr... ”
“Lotte. And no! The head of security has one and he's down that hall with those monsters. It's what we need to destroy what's left of these test subjects. Point that weapon and start firing! Doesn't matter who you hit, they all need to be dead anyway! Let's go!”
Richtofen took several magazines for his weapon and placed them in his lab coat pockets for later before joining the officer.
The two moved further down the hallway, weapons raised towards the horde. Details became more clear on the figures participating in the struggle as they grew closer. A trio of Russian prisoners were grappling with several undead test subjects. The zombies' eyes glowed like two orange beacons as they bit down and gnawed on any limb they could wrap their jaws around. Their enormous strength soon overpowered the prisoners as they were toppled one by one. Richtofen fired two bullets, one hitting the wall and the second impacting one of the undead's head. It sputtered and let out a last shriek as the lights in its eyes faded and it fell to the ground in a pool of blood. Two others soon turned their attention towards Lotte and Richtofen, jogging and flailing their arms in desparation. Lotte pulled the trigger five times, impacting the first twice in the neck and then in the head, while knocking down the other with two consecutive shots to the forehead.
The adrenaline from the brutal death and body horror before Richtofen gave him a euphoric thrill, prompting him to laugh excessively. Lotte responded to the offputting outburst as he reloaded, “What the-... start firing you maniac or we are going to die!”
“You find such comfort in chaos, Edward. You will make a great surrogate.”
“Ja, it is quite fun, isn't it?!”
Arriving closer and closer, two undead subjects remained, one meeting its end after three shots to its chest, the blood spraying onto Richtofen's coat before its skull met the concrete.
The second zombie promptly trampled the corpse of his comrade, bounding towards Richtofen. Edward pulled the trigger once more for a kill shot, but his Walther let out a click. As the beast prepared to leap towards him, Lotte plowed all of his weight into it, pinning it to the concrete wall. It responded swiftly, biting down onto his forearm as he screamed in pain.
“Shoot it, NOW!”
Richtofen placed a fresh magazine into the handgun, pulled back the hammer, and blew a hole into the zombie's temple, freeing its jaws from the now limp arm of Lotte.
“My God, this hurts! When we finish here and get to the barracks, I need medical attention.”
“Of course! I can fix that, probably.”
“That body there, grab the keycard from its jacket pocket and get this hall open! We're losing time.”
Richtofen approached the corpse of the security cousel in charge of the test subject living quarters, lifting the keycard from his pockets as instructed. He promptly placed the black bar edge into the slot nearby the doorway leading to the main hall.
“Level four access.”
There were a couple more corpses at their feet as the automatic door came open, and two living subjects at the end of the hall, one wielding a double-barrelled shotgun, and the other still in handcuffs. The doors to several of the quarters were damaged and burst open, while others still remained locked with prisoners banging on the metal, calling for help.
As the shotgun-wielding prisoner attended to the other's handcuffs, he heard the sound of their boot steps as they entered the hallway. He turned to face them, his weapon pointed towards the ground. Lotte, without hesitation, placed a bullet into the the subject's skull, sending him to the ground. The handcuffed subject attempted to flee, leaning against the emergency exit at the end of the hallway which was locked due to the Shield. Lotte approached closer, shooting the subject twice in the spine as he called for help, and the lifeless body slinked to the ground.
“Start getting these doors open! We need to burn the building when we are finished.”
Richtofen pulled back the sleeve of his coat to view his watch. He would soon be behind schedule.
“If you say so... wait, Lotte, I need more rounds for mein Walther!”
Distressed and ready to leave, Lotte reached into his front pocket with his working hand after handing Richtofen his other weapon for the moment, and outstretched his last magazine to Edward, who accepted it.
Richtofen then lifted the Walther handed to him by Lotte, pointing it to his head, before shooting him at point-blank range, sending his body at full force to the hard ground.
“There is no more time to waste!”
“Free them, Edward. They will provide you with protection.”
Richtofen placed the black-barred edge of the keycard into the slot in the adjacent wall, inputting a key sequence to open every door in the hall.
“Level four access.”
“Enjoy your freedom while it lasts, mein friends!”
Eight sliding metal doors inched open, and out came the prisoners of varying heights, weights, strengths, and nationalities.
“Vive la révolution!”
The men scrambled as they exited their cells. The head of the group, a tall, brutish individual with a chin-strap beard, took the double-barrel shotgun off of the corpse below him.
“Warning, the Shield's electro-shock defenses will activate in 30 minutes. Find and destroy the designated materials and report to the barracks immediately, this is not a drill.”
“You must lead them Edward.”
“Everyone, gather with me, your savior! I need assistance reaching the storage facility. There will be undead in our path.”
In a throaty French accent, the large man with his weapon spoke out.
“Why would we help you, German?”
“Well, my muscly friend, there will be transportation away from our current predicament. When we arrive at Storage, you can leave or whatever it is you believe you should do! But we must leave, now!”
“Vingt-Dieux! We will fight for our freedom.”
“I'm glad we could work that out, my friends! Onward!”
Richtofen ran ahead, a single Walther in his hand, and a second from Lotte, still with a few rounds, in his coat. Behind him, the large Frenchman.
“How will we arm ze others, Docteur?”
Ahead of them was a small outpost with a security gate locked by the Shield's system of protections. At its doorway were two zombies, crouched, feasting on an unidentifiable corpse.
“There should be weapons in that command center. I need to get inside to get that gate open.”
As he finished his sentence, the French man sped up in pace, rapidly approaching the doorway where the zombies were now fully intent on attacking. Before they could react with their rotting minds, the man unloaded both barrels into the chest of one, splitting it into two equally gruesome halves of the same bloody mess. The kickback of the weapon had no affect on him as he flipped the weapon backwards, slamming the butt-end into the other undead's skull, leaving an indention as it fell to the ground. He proceeded to stomp on its neck three times until the light drained from its eyes.
“Mein gott. That was... quite exquisite to watch. I wish I had known you longer, comrade!”
Richtofen and the others soon piled into the outpost, grabbing weapons and ammunition to arm their small revolution. Richtofen took the keycard from his labcoat, placing it firmly into the control panel nearest the window looking towards the gate. It began to rumble as the massive metal gate came open.
“Level four access.”
When the doors came open, the group could hear screams of terror and suffering from inside the gates, as well as those of the undead in their flesh mania.
Richtofen led the group outside, where the gate had revealed an open road with laboratories on either side, and a garage at the far end attached to the storage facility. He pointed towards it, the path blotted with a horde of undead grazing on corpses.
“In there are two transports out of here! When we arrive, get the doors open, und the keys should be locked in a case on the wall between them. I'm sure my French friend here could, well, force it open.”
“I can do that.”
“Oh, how I will miss you when this is all over... “
“Ze feeling is not mutual.”
Richtofen, with a frown, marched forward with the others following, the undead now aware of their arrival. One which was previously inside the laboratories to their left pounced, before being swiftly brought down by the French man's fists and shot in the head with his sidearm.
All twelve of the men stood in a battle formation, taking precision shots at zombies who edged too close to the group. The gunfire soon caught the attention of more as they lept from high windows of the laboratories, breaking bones in the process yet still getting up to attack. Richtofen's ears began to ring from the continuous blasts around him. An undead version of a female desk worker swung its arms and nearly touched Richtofen before he blew a hole out the back of its head, splattering blood out of the back as it fell. Soon another three met their end a similar way before Richtofen had to reload, and one of the prisoners took his place. Like a well-oiled machine, the group had navigated through their horde, distributing their firepower for a continuous defense. They were at the garage door now, and at perfect timing as they ran low on munitions. Richtofen scrambled for the keycard before realizing the French man had already halfway lifted the garage door, motioning the others to get inside. One-by-one they piled inside, crouching under the door way before the last of them was inside and the door was let go. The inside smelled of gasoline and motor oil, and the loud clanging of undead hands on the garage doors filled the room.
At the back end of the garage were two German military transport trucks in pristine condition, their gas tanks filled and engines ready to go.
The French prisoner approached the box nailed into the wall behind the trucks, gripping each side firmly and pulling until the cover had been ripped off the hinges. Inside were two key rings hanging on a set of holders. He took one, tossing it to another of the men who caught it before entering the driver's seat of the left truck. The other he handed to Doctor Richtofen.
“I suppose this is where we part ways, Docteur. Thank you.”
Richtofen snatched the keys, walking towards a doorway within the garage before looking back to the Frenchman.
“Don't thank me; Thank the voices!”
Confused, the Frenchman stood bewildered as Richtofen opened the door, jogging up the stairs. He passed the now loaded truck, approaching a lever adjacent to the garage door and nodding to the driver who ignited the engine. He pulled the lever, lifting the door as he entered the passenger side of the truck, shotgun pointed out the window.
Richtofen climbed the stairs, cautious of what might be waiting for him, living or dead, but the inside of the building was completely quiet.
“Why couldn't we take them? For the most part we are on the same wavelength, you und I... but why these subjects.”
“Those prisoners are strong, but their destiny is not with you, Edward. Like you, your test subjects are chosen. Not for their brilliant minds, but for their utility to us. They will bend to our will and serve us.”
“They will never understand what it is like to be us, voices. Sometimes I wonder what I would do without you!”
“You are so close. You will need their weak, naive minds to stop her. Samantha Maxis' powers grow with every moment. But you, Edward, you are destined for greatness. The device beckons you.”
“Ja, ja, I know that. Obviously. But dealing with the girl will be a challenge, one I am excited to accept! Once I have my subjects on my side, I will need to acquire my diary. All the way in Japan... Maxis spread our operations so thin. It is a miracle that fool is dead.”
“Maxis' influence may still be at play in Samantha's power.”
“You heard the audio as well as I did. He is dead, und the world is better off without him. Apart from all of the undead.”
“They will be yours to control, Edward. In due time, we will succeed, as we always do.”
Edward holstered his weapon, turning the corner to find storage room C8, where he had asked his special cargo to be sent on the trip to Der Riese.
“Level four access.”
“Warning, the Shield's electro-shock defenses will activate in 20 minutes. Find and destroy the designated materials and report to the barracks immediately, this is not a drill.”
Without time to waste, Richtofen entered the storage room, which had three long, metal cryo-pods at the center on wheels, and a set of personal lockers along the back wall. Richtofen twisted the dial of the left-most locker, opening the door and reaching into his bag stored inside. He retrieved a small, silver key, holding it in his left hand as he unzipped the biggest opening of the bag to view its contents. As he expected, inside was the Wunderwaffe DG-2: his magnum opus, his pride, his most personal achievement. A weapon to win any war for any nation, shot down with all its majesty by Doctor Maxis. Richtofen could not help but shed a tear seeing the weapon again. Soon it would be put to good use.
He closed the bag once more, and removed it from the locker, placing it to his side. He attended to the three cryo-pods in the center of the room. For him to survive and take back what he deserves from Samantha, he would need the aid of his strongest test subjects. Nikolai. Dempsey. Takeo.
As he reached for the control panel to Nikolai's pod, he hesitated for a moment. The last time he had seen them, they were lacking in any meaningful memories. If they saw him in his bloody lab coat, they may fear the worst and betray him, or it would ignite memories hidden in their mind from tests of the past. He must be a clean slate when they see him for the first time.
He placed the key on a flat surface just above the control panel of Nikolai's pod, before opening the second locker in search of a cleaner outfit. As the storage unit was personally Richtofen's, he had luckily stowed away clean clothes yesterday when he intended to kill Maxis and his daughter. Unfortunately, these clothes were that of a German officer: Hardly a welcome sight for the comatose test subjects, especially... the American.
It would be Richtofen's only option, however, as time was against him and Der Riese would soon be under complete lockdown, potentially for weeks. He mustn't be here when the Soviets arrive. Perhaps his test subjects would fear him in such an outfit. Perhaps their fear of him could prove a catalyst for comraderie between them. It is imperative that they learn to work together, or there will no hope in finding a way back to Griffin Station.
Edward removed the bloody labcoat, tossing it out of an open window along with his pants. He then put on the new set of black military pants, along with the crisp, white shirt hanging inside the locker. He put his arms through the sleeves of the jacket, the medals of a war criminal swinging as he buttoned it together quickly. Edward seemed to find the uniform a nice fit, despite his previous distaste for the Nazis. The medals and the high level of adornment made Richtofen feel the glory of achievment, even if he did not earn it. Finally he donned the military cap, the top marked with an eagle. The look now complete, he adjusted it to appear more professional, and strode back towards Nikolai's pod, placing the key in his right hand, and pressing the large, red “unlock” button on the cryo-pod.
Nikolai Belinski: The Russian. A man of low intelligence but fierce aggression and loyalty, like a troubled child. The cryo-pod's top door came open, gas ejecting from the seams as it let loose a flurry of cold wind. Laying in the pod, restrained, was Nikolai wearing the same Red Army uniform he was captured in during the Battle of Stalingrad. Breathing lightly and skin still cold, Richtofen snapped his fingers in Nikolai's face in an attempt to wake him, knowing results would likely be failure. In his tests on Nikolai, he came to find his blood levels remaining in a normal state required an excessive amount of alcoholic intake; More than any man should be able to survive. Reaching into his bag, Edward retrieved a bottle of vodka he had purchased in Berlin along with a dozen more in a separate bag inside the locker. He opened the top, tipping the glass over Nikolai's open mouth, pouring some in the same manner he would a flask. After a moment, his eyes opened and his breathing rate increased. Nikolai raised his upper body in an attempt to leave the pod, but was held down by his wrists which were restrained.
“Chto za chert?! Gde ya?!”
“Unless you know German, I would recommend you speak English. I know the words are rattling around in your little head.”
“Wha- what is happen? Who are you?!”
“Hello Nikolai, I am Doctor Edward Richtofen. You may remember me from befor-”
“I do not.”
“Well, even better! What do you remember? Und be speedy, we really do not have much time!”
“No time? Ehh... well, I was fighting... in war... fighting the Germans. Hey, like you!”
“Like me? Well, Nikolai, be that as it may, the good news is, that war is over.”
“Did Russians win war?”
“You could say that.”
“But a new war is brewing. One which requires your bravery!”
“Mmmm... what kind of war?”
“It's more like un adventure with lots of monsters to fight along the way. It will be so much fun!”
“What are you... “
“Nein, Nikolai, listen. I am going to release you from your restraints. Open that bag in the locker and you will find several bottles of vodka, und you can finish this one in my hand.”
Nikolai's eyes glowed with excitement as he looked to the bag.
“Und do not drink it all at once! There is a long road ahead, und there will not be much time to find more. But when our mission is complete, you can return home and drink as much as you would like.”
“Okay, okay, enough! Let me out!”
Richtofen used the little silver key to unlatch the cuffs around both of Nikolai's now sweating hands, causing him to leap to his wobbly feet and bound over to the bag of vodka, a bottle in hand.
Edward then approached the second pod: The one he feared the most. Thomas Dempsey, a strong-willed, muscular American brute who preferred to be called by his military nickname, “Tank”. Richtofen hesitated for a moment, knowing time was short before they were trapped, and finally released the pod's door. Like before, the cold wind released outward into the room, and in the pod was the green-uniformed American marine. Richtofen stood closely, key in hand, as Dempsey's eyes opened to meet him.
“Hello, er,” Richtofen stifled the laughter as he said, “'Tank'. My name is Doctor-”
Dempsey's eyes lit up with fury and Richtofen felt a sharp pain in his lower jaw. Dempsey's right hand was uncuffed and had impacted Richtofen's face, sending him reeling back. Dempsey proceeded to take note of a bobby pin in his palm, which he used to undo the lock on his left hand.
“Thought you had me pinned, didn't you, you fucking Nazi!”
Nikolai lifted his head out of the vodka bag, looking to Richtofen and then to Dempsey.
Dempsey lowered his head, sprinting towards the now-recovering Richtofen, pushing him to the ground, while trying to choke him with his forearm.
“Where am I, you fucking kraut?! What happened to McCain? Where did Smokey and... Oh God...”
On the ground, Richtofen turned his eyes to Nikolai, now standing over them.
Nikolai raised the vodka bottle in his hand, pouring the rest into his mouth before gripping the neck of the bottle with his other hand. He approached Dempsey, bottle raised as Richtofen attempted to shake his head, “N-No!”
Dempsey lifted his weight off of Richtofen, grabbing Nikolai by the arm to stop his swing before punching him twice in the gut. Nikolai dropped the bottle and fell to the ground in pain.
Dempsey stood up, breathing heavy and eyes shifting between Richtofen and Nikolai, and then finally to the pod holding Takeo. He looked inside, visibly confused as he looked upon the man's frozen face inside.
“What... the fuck...”
Richtofen raised to his feet, gasping and trying to recapture his breath.
“Today... is October... 14th... 1945.”
He began to violently cough before lifting his head back up to face the American.
“As we speak, the world will soon be plunged into chaos. I need your help-”
Nikolai's head perked up, “Zombie?”
Dempsey paced towards the window, looking out upon the street where corpses both lay and walk, their eyes glowing orange and their stomachs hungry for flesh.
“The mission... what happened to my squad? That was... about a month ago... I don't remember being knocked out.”
“I wouldn't have any idea, American. But right now, we are about to be trapped in this facility full of zombies if we do not leave in, hmm, eleven minutes!”
“I assume we're in Germany... I need to find a way back home. I need to contact Pernell.”
“There is much to do Dempsey. Your mission is incomplete-”
“My mission, German, was finding Peter McCain. Unless you have any idea-”
“I can take you anywhere you desire, Dempsey, but you have to trust me. We must find my, erm, journal, und get to Griffin Station so we can stop all of this madness!”
“You know where those freaks came from? With the eyes? The ones that eat people?”
“There will be time later. Explain to our Russian friend over there what we are up against. You may have to try multiple times for it to take effect in his mind. I will gather our fourth member and we will make our way out.”
“Working with a Nazi? I'd rather take the two of you out with my bare hands and ditch this place on my own.”
“Are you sure you'll stand a fighting chance against them, American? What happened last time, when you had your allies?”
“Ignoring the uniform, I bear no semblence to a Nazi. I'm really wunderbar when you get to know me. Now do as I said or we'll all be dead men!”
Dempsey reluctantly turned his back to Richtofen, kneeling down with Nikolai near the bag of vodka to inform him of the coming enemy.
Richtofen approached the fourth pod, and inside was Takeo Masaki: The one with the sharpest intelligence of Edward's subjects, but a blind faith in his nation and its Emperor. His will is strong, but he would prove to be a useful asset if he is convinced.
He unlocked the pod, opening it as before to reveal the Japanese samurai: The last of his kind in Japan. He snapped his fingers until Takeo's eyes opened to gaze back at him. Richtofen held his head back, anticipating another blow to his jaw, but Takeo remained still.
“Hello Takeo. I am Doctor Richtofen. Und I've already gone through this twice now, so would you please be cooperative? Pretty please?”
Takeo stayed silent as before, turning his head to view the Russian and American squabbling over the contents of a bag on the floor.
“Takeo, I hope you remember your English, because that would be quite the inconvenience if you did not.”
Takeo turned back to Richtofen, then to his restraints.
“Where are we, Doctor? I... was at the swamp. The... Rising Sun Facility?”
“Ja, ja, anyway. Good news: We are going back there. Or bad news, I'm not really sure of your opinion on the matter.”
“I do not understand. What happened to my mission? The Emperor had requested that I-”
“Takeo, we do not have the time right now. Soon we will be surrounded by undead.”
Richtofen used the key to release his restraints, striding towards the lockers where he pulled out a long sheath with a sword imbedded inside.
“I had a feeling you would need this, Takeo. Now, go get acquainted with the two others for this journey. It should be short, if I am lucky that is... ”
“But the Emperor-”
“The Emperor told me himself that you must help me. It is imperative for all of our survival, including those back home in Japan, that you help me. There are monsters out there, Takeo, and only I know how to stop them! But I need your help! Yours and... those two over there.”
“The Emperor... spoke to you personally?”
“Well, not exactly, we're just pen pals is all... That is not the point, Takeo!”
“Warning, the Shield's electro-shock defenses will activate in 5 minutes. Find and destroy the designated materials and report to the barracks immediately, this is not a drill.”
“Do you hear that, Takeo? We must move swiftly if we are to escape alive. Now come!”
Richtofen motioned his hand for Takeo to join him with Dempsey and Nikolai, who was now holding the closed bag of vodka with words stitched on the side, “Nikolai's Vodka”. The four faced each-other in an awkward exchange of glances.
“The name was nice touch, German.”
Dempsey scowled at Nikolai, then at Richtofen. “Yeah, real cute.”
Nikolai peered at Takeo's katana, now strapped to the belt of his Japanese officer uniform.
“Hey... do we get weapon as well? Why he get weapon?”
Richtofen rolled his eyes, taking his personal bag with the Wunderwaffe DG-2 out of the locker before opening the door leading out of the room.
“Right now, we must worry about taking the transport out of the facility before it goes into complete lockdown. There is a transport downstairs. Nikolai! You are driving.”
Richtofen handed the keyring to the Russian, now drunk from his vodka mania.
“Vot Eto Da! This will be fun ride!”
Dempsey spoke out as Nikolai struggled to walk down the stairs.
“I don't think that is such a good idea, Doc.”
The other three soon followed him down the stairs towards the garage.
“Oh, don't worry, his motor function is surprisingly acceptable in this state.”
“How long have you known us for exactly? And why don't we remember anything?”
“No more questions until after the ride, Dempsey!
They arrived at the ground floor, Nikolai now in the driver's seat of the truck, turning the ignition. The garage door had been left open by the prisoners who had just escaped, leaving it exposed to the zombie horde shambling outside.
Takeo approached the doorway, placing his hand on the handle of his blade as he looked in awe.
“What... are they. I feel... I remember-”
Dempsey grabbed Takeo's shoulder, who brushed him aside and unsheathed his blade towards him.
“Take it easy. Those freaks can probably smell us by now. They're fast and they're fucking nasty. We have to go, like the Doc said.”
Takeo placed his blade back into its sheath, feeling a twinge of fear as he locked eyes with a group of undead. Two headlights flashed to life behind him as Nikolai called out of the window.
“Get inside or I run you over! Ha ha ha!”
He began to rev the engine, laughing as he did so. Richtofen chastised the drunk for drawing further attention as Takeo and Dempsey entered the back end of the transport, its top covered by a tarp.
Now in the passenger seat, Richtofen leaned out of the window, his Walther in hand.
“Here they come! Drive, Nikolai!”
Seven zombies began to sprint towards the vehicle, four of them being crushed beneath its weight as it came rolling out of the garage, while one leaped onto the hood, and two others hung onto the side of the truck, shifting its weight slightly. Richtofen made short work of the one on the hood using a bullet to the rotting brain. It crumpled and fell to the wayside as Nikolai veered the truck left towards the main entrance.
“Stop at the main entrance und use this key to open the gate. Now!”
“Warning, the Shield's electro-shock defenses will activate in 1 minute. Report to the barracks immediately.”
He twisted his head to look at the two undead holding on to the side of the truck.
“Doc! Doc! Give me that weapon, now!”
“Not now, Dempsey.”
He fired a shot, missing and hitting the dirt.
“You son of a bitch, one is getting in!”
With the shakiness of the truck, Richtofen could not quite line up his sights with the target. He felt a tugging at his jacket as Dempsey pulled him into the truck from the back window, reaching into his coat pocket to remove his spare pistol.
“Oh, ja, I forgot-”
Dempsey pointed the gun to the walker now peering its head around the corner, attempting to lift itself up into the back of the truck. He fired two shots, one missing during a bump in the road, and the second piercing the back of its throat as it released its fingers from the side of the truck. The second zombie ripped a hole into the tarp roof of the vehicle, peering its disgusting head inside, flapping its jaws and shrieking. Dempsey pulled the trigger once more to find the weapon had run out of ammo. He instinctively threw the weapon, only for it to bouce off its head and land on the floor.
The demon reached its arms inside, now fully within the truck, which had come to a stop at the front gate. Now fully oriented, the beast reached out to Dempsey, who backed away as Takeo stood up and slashed the beast's chest with his katana, spraying blood against the tarp. It let out a howl as he swung once more, piercing deeper into its abdomen, cutting it fully in half. Even still, it shook its evil head side to side grasping dearly to life as Takeo cleanly sliced its head off of its neck.
“Damn. That was... badass.”
In the cabin of the truck, Nikolai was attempting to place the keycard into the panel but nothing seemed to be happening.
“I think is busted.”
Richtofen snatched the card from his hands.
“Dummkopf, the black end goes in!”
“I think I tried doing that.”
“I have been watching you Nikolai! You have not! Do it now!”
“Level four access.”
Inserting the card, the front gate began to open.
Nikolai pressed as hard as he could onto the pedal, causing the tires to screech as he passed through the two separating gates. The ends began to scrape against the side of the truck as the intercom came on.
“Electro-shock defenses now activated. Facility now under full lockdown. Level four clearance from inside the barracks required to disengage lockdown.”
The gate had now fully closed behind them and the buzzing of electricity surging throughout every doorway of the facility could be heard over the sound of the truck's tires. Nikolai followed the main road out of the Der Riese campus.
“Where do we go now, German, since you are man with plan.”
Dempsey peered his head in through the window, tossing the empty, bloody Walther into Richtofen's lap.
“Yeah, Doc. What's next?”
“We are moving west. Japan is our target, und we need better transportation to reach it.”
“The airfield holds what you seek, Edward.”
“Und I know just the place to find it!”