There's a storm front moving in from the southwest, and our contacts who've already been hit by it tell us it's a bad one. Really, really bad. Remember about a year ago when we got hit by that storm the dropped a tornado on us? This one has spawned at least two so far. We've estimated that at the speed the front is moving, the really bad parts will be here somewhere between noon and eight tonight. That's as close as we can gauge based on where it has hit so far and at what times.
That means I'll be indoors most of the day, which is fine. I have to work on the project I started talking about yesterday anyway.
All of us have had to do some terrible things since The Fall. Sometimes a necessity comes along that's too much for most people to deal with. Not that they couldn't, I guess, but more that they shouldn't have to. Killing to defend ourselves is a reality we all deal with, as is risking our lives to go out and gather even the most basic needs.
Capturing and experimenting on zombies, however, isn't something most people should have to do.
Evans, Gabrielle, and I have done this before. We learned a lot about the way the undead work from that experiment. Data combined with experience and insight creates understanding, and the only way to combat an enemy, any enemy, is to understand them.
Yesterday we caught two zombies. It wasn't as hard as you might think. One of them is a New Breed, the other appears to be what I call an old school or 'original recipe' zombie. We set a trap for them, hiding a group of men with hooks and ropes behind a hill as our person acting as bait led the undead to them.
The New Breed is obviously intelligent, easily told apart by the thickened skin with its odd gray color and rough texture, almost like a lizard. The old school zombie looks like a walking dead person, but there's a glimmer of cleverness when I look into its eyes. Something along the lines of gazing into the abyss, and the abyss gazing also.
So far we haven't done much to either of them. Our first purpose is to test the reasoning capacity of the New Breed, then we move onto the physical differences, various athletic abilities, and anything else we can think of. It's dangerous as hell, because a lot of what we'll be doing involves close contact with both of them. Because of that, only I will actually be interacting with the subjects. Evans and Gabby will be overseeing the tests as well as designing them, but both of them are far too valuable to risk in this way.
I, on the other hand, am way more experienced in fighting off the undead than Evans and Gabby, and have the best chance of surviving any mishaps. I've got a lot of firsthand practice handling zombies, and by going into the enclosures alone I won't have to worry about protecting anyone else. I'll be wearing armor and taking every precaution, but we've decided that no one else will take this risk.
If something should happen to me, the zombies will be put down and the experiment will be over. I'm confident that with all the safety measures we've taken, these two won't present that kind of danger. Famous last words, I know, but it's really very safe.
The really interesting bit is seeing if the old school zombie will change into a New Breed without physical contact. The old school one has had the tatters of its clothes cut off it (which was not a fun experience, let me tell you...) and we can see that it hasn't suffered any bites. We're working on the assumption that the New Breed infects other types of zombies with their strain of the plague through bites.
Ah, I'm going off on tangents. I apologize. Thunder is cracking overhead, and we'll have to take down the transmitter before long. I hope we uncover a treasure trove of behavior data from these corpses, because I don't relish the truly horrible parts that will come after that phase. The...physical parts. Testing how much damage one of them can take and still function, which means doing bad, bad things to them. I know they're zombies, but they look like people. Just thinking about it makes my stomach churn.
Time to put on my gear and go into the cages.