A big part of why we are calling it a job done is because of the drastic drop in zombie attacks since the wave of cold has come in. We are looking at maybe a fifth of the usual numbers if that, and they look to be dropping day by day. That means easier working conditions, faster work, all that good stuff. We will of course continue working on the annexes until they are totally done, but the folks from downtown are moving up here starting...oh, now or so.
Patrick and the others are about halfway home with the first load of turbines and related sundries from the factory. No news to report from them one way or the other, no attacks or odd sightings. He thinks they will be home tonight or early in the morning since the closer they get to here the safer and better traveled the roads are.
The biggest news today comes from up north at Jack's compound. Steve ran strikes all day yesterday against the massive swarm of zombies assaulting the place, and after the horde broke apart, he went out on his own. Not looking to kill an army of them all by his lonesome Ogami Itto style, but to try and sneak after some of the smarties and try to find out for certain where they are holing up when the cold gets really bad there.
He found them. Or at least, he found a huge grouping of them in a band of woods about two miles away from Jack's compound.
Some of Jack's people have been tinkering with ideas for weapons, and ways to take out large numbers of zombies at once. Fortunately, Will was crazy enough to try some of those untested weapons while leading a joint team of folks from both compounds.
Aerosolized gasoline sprayers, easily thrown a hundred feet or so to saturate the air around the inert zombies in their hiding place.
Bombs built into sharp pipes fired from an air-powered gun mounted on the back of a truck, loosing ten of them in one shot. The brilliance of this one is that the pipes jam into trees when fired at them, and when they blow up the trees fall, causing an amazing level of damage to anything that happens to be in its path.
So imagine what happened when they filled the woods the retreated zombies were hiding in with explosive fumes right before lobbing a hundred or so bombs at as many trees...
I am told it was almost beautiful to suddenly watch the air itself simply turn to flame. Trees blazing as their trunks exploded, fragmenting out into a thousand fiery splinters, great boughs crushing and rolling into crowds of nearly immobile undead...
The estimate right now is more than a thousand dead at one go. Perhaps not a tactic I would use during warmer times, since fire usually only makes zombies go from flesh-hungry corpses intent on eating you into flaming flesh hungry corpses intent on eating you, but the cold slows them down so much that the fire had time to disable them before they could even consider hurting a person even if the trees falling near them missed.
It isn't total victory, but it is a victory. It's a major blow to the numbers able to threaten Jack's place, and it makes the jobs of the defenders that much easier. I am proud of every person who took part in that raid, especially Will. I am proud of Courtney for having the intelligence to talk to every person she could, and finding out about some of the weapons they have been working on. Even more, I feel immense pride that she came up with the attack plan to use them. I admit that I probably expected that more of Will or Steve, but that's me being a huge sexist, isn't it?
I do sometimes forget that simply having lady parts does not preclude Courtney or any other woman from possessing fine tactical instincts. Forgive me.
Above all, I am relieved that some of the pressure is off the folks up there. Every life lost is a lessening of the chances the human race has to survive. I am fairly brimming with satisfaction that Will and the others are managing to work together so well, to a common purpose. Hell, Will was beating himself up that he didn't come up with the idea first, that he hadn't asked around about weapons like Courtney did. He actually hugged her when she told him her plan.
Considering that she didn't kick him in the balls for doing so, I take it to mean that my dear Cortz now has a more positive opinion about Will. If nothing else, that makes my day.