It''s above freezing for the first time since we got to this town. Not much above, but apparently enough to make it a lot easier for these weird cold resistant zombies to move around a lot easier. There aren't many of them by our standards, maybe three dozen total. We're in a pretty safe place, though, and we've managed to gather a lot of firewood and block all the windows.
There's roof access from inside. That makes it pretty easy to mount a sentry, though it's a pain in the ass to get up there. I think they designed this place for a race of slender midgets to do all the maintenance. All of the crawlspaces and utility areas are small and cramped.
So far we haven't had a lot of trouble from the zombies milling around outside, but we're keeping a sharp eye out anyway. I still won't say where we are, but I will tell you that we're north of the compound. Not straight north necessarily, but farther north than we were...
I wonder if there were multiple versions of whatever plague causes people to rise from the dead. It's a chilling thought, but given the boom in genetically modified foods and designer bacteria back when society was still running (somewhat) smoothly, I wouldn't be shocked by it. A part of me wonders if it isn't all one base organism, though, that just evolves and mutates really quickly.
I mean, the smarties (my word for the smarter zombies that popped up a few months back) came about at a time when we were pretty much managing to protect ourselves from attacks all the time. Maybe it was a one-off mutation that stuck, and then spread. Now we have these cold-resistant undead, and I curse the lack of consistent and easy communication. Back at the compound I would have been able to talk to a lot of folks very quickly, to find out if others have seen anything like this or if we've discovered something new.
I would think that Jack's compound would have, if anyone. They are in Michigan, where it's way colder than it is here. If the undead were to suddenly develop an ability like this, you would think that it would have been there. Then again, I lose my cell signal for most of each day, and I haven't talked to Jack's people in a while, so maybe it did come from farther north and just spread here.
In case these new zombies aren't isolated to our location, let me give you some information that may help you out. They seem to operate down to at least zero degrees--it was only five above the other day and they were still managing to move about. Jerkily and awkward, but moving and able to bite. Above freezing they do a lot better, though it seems they aren't capable of running or too many other fast motions other than snapping at flesh. Maybe a way for them to conserve their energy reserves, which we theorized back when it first started to get chilly out. I think the biggest danger for anybody out there that lives in an area where the weather gets cold enough to affect them is carelessness. It's entirely likely that after weeks or months not seeing a mobile zombie, you might get a little to comfortable and make a mistake.
So, be paranoid. Pull your weapon at the slightest sound. Peek around corners and keep vigilant. If this thing goes farther than where we are, or has cropped up in more than one place at the same time, then the danger to all of us is much higher than most of us realize.
As much as I hate to say it, I really hope these things haven't appeared at the compound. Not for the sake of the bastard soldiers that took the place from we who built it, but for the friends and loved ones left behind. I can imagine all too well that our people would be the ones sent out to capture one of the "Snowtroopers" for examination.
Gabrielle will be back with a post tomorrow, and then just me for the weekend. I realized today that we're almost at our three hundredth post, and I want to try to do something special for it. I realize it might not mean much to you guys, but every time I hit that publish button, it's a victory for me. It means that I have survived another day, loved another day. When I click the mouse, I am passing on something that might directly teach a person something about survival. I might be showing them something about humanity. I could be making them smile, or feel connected.
So getting to three hundred is a big deal for me, and I hope it is for many of you as well. Keep an eye out for it on Sunday, and stay safe.