Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Cookie Cutters

This morning brought a load of good surprises. The weather is nicer than it has been for days: a perfectly comfortable sixty-five degrees with a slight wind and just the right amount of humidity. The western trench was full of dead zombies, courtesy of an early morning rush by a group of about fifty. The sentries didn't even ring a bell, it was so easy to defend against them. Five men and women picked off every one of them thanks to the brilliant work my brother Dave and Will have done.

Oh, yeah--Will has been putting his two cents in on the new defenses. He thought it would be smart to pull up some of the stakes we've had ringing the compound and see how sticking them in the dirt berm around the trench would work. As it turns out, fairly well: the zombies in the front of the group slowed down to avoid the stakes, but the rest of them didn't. That pushed some of the ones in front into the stakes, impaling them and making it harder for the ones behind to move over the berm. Easy targets. 

I'm not sure why this particular group of undead tried to rush the only wall with a fully finished trench. They've been avoiding it for the most part and trickling around to sections of the wall that are easier to maneuver. Perhaps they were especially hungry, or were working on some kind of group hysteria. Maybe a smarty was pushing them to attack to test our defenses. We've seen it before. 

Whatever the reason, I'm glad to see the trenches are effective. More, I'm glad to see Will working on more projects. Since his punishment was handed down, I've seen him slowly become a quieter and sadder person. I know some of that has to be the fact that he feels terrible about giving us up to the Richmond soldiers. I think a lot more is probably due to the constant stream of shitty treatment he gets from some people around here. It's not like I blame them--he did an awful thing for what he thought were good reasons, and he accepted the consequences of that. It's a complex situation that contains a distressing amount of moral ambiguity on all sides. 

Basically, that means that I can't fault Will for feeling down that people hate him, nor can I blame him for getting mad about it. That's human nature, regardless of how deserved the treatment may be. Nor can I fault the people who hate Will with a passion and are doing everything they are allowed to do to make him feel that hate. They have the right, and good reason. Doesn't mean I have to like it. The situation is a hundred shades of grey, and crappy for all involved. 

I'll say this, though--Will is one tough fucker. He's been working closely with Dodger on a lot of projects to do with the defenses, and in the process had to work with a lot of people that would rather put a knife in him than hold a civil conversation. Will hasn't let that slow down his progress on some things. One of those projects was completely unknown to me, but we all found out about it this morning. 

Will has been in touch with the people in North Jackson for a while now. I don't know if he set up a trade or something with them, but this morning a pickup truck came to the north gate. It was full of mass-produced weapons. Rather, it was full of a shipment of the same mass-produced weapon. The design was Will's own, and we've got two hundred of them. 

It's basically a machete. Stamped out of thick sheets of metal, unsharpened (that's up to us), the thing is a long, heavy blade about two feet long with a six inch long spike sticking out of the bottom of the hilt. The hilt is flat like the blade, but the edges are rounded to make it less damaging for whatever material we use to wrap around them.

I'm impressed at the design, but more so with Will's ability to get this done with no one in the compound being the wiser. He has managed to circumvent the huge amount of distrust that many here and quite a few in North Jackson feel for him. I'm going to ask him about the details, but the simple fact that he managed to get us so many new and hopefully reliable weapons scores him major brownie points in my book. 

Hopefully it will do the same for some others around here. 

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