I've been fighting for almost twelve hours now. They came in the rain last night, the mud weakening the defenses so much that the sheer weight of bodies knocked over posts and created breaches in the outer defenses. It's a hard lesson to learn, but we learned it. The problem with having those outer defenses is that people become comfortable moving around inside them since they have a chance not to be bottled up behind the walls of Haven.
I just sat down after half a day of fighting and cleanup, and I'm so damn tired. I know intellectually that the bone-deep weariness I feel is affecting my mental state, that the chemicals in my brain are sending false messages of sadness and a sense of defeat in order to force me to sleep. I'm aware of that, yet months of fighting those impulses have left me with an automatic response, which is to tell the chemicals in brain to go fuck themselves.
We took losses. The undead came in waves so dense they were almost a sea. We fought in the hot rain, like blood coursing down from the sky, every inch a battle against old enemies and New Breed alike.
There weren't many kinds of weapons I didn't use. All of us at one point or another fired guns, shot bows, used swords or machetes, knives, and during the initial flood of zombies, spears too numerous to count. With simple wooden sticks we defended the injured, breaking the points off so often that runners--most of them younger men and women not old enough to fight--had to resupply us in a constant run back and forth to the supply sheds.
Thank god we've stockpiled and stockpiled, because we ate through most of what we had in this fight. Our kids carve spears every day, both as a learning experience in how to make weapons from almost anything, and because we need them.
The fight is far from over, you understand. The wave that hit us came out of the breach like water through a dam; high pressure and concentrated. Sixty people were in the area when it happened, some merely going about the business of enjoying the night and the spring rain, but most others actually out there for a purpose. Most of them were working. Some planted crops, some shoring up the defenses, and all sixty of the folks in the initial danger zone lost their lives.
I can't even explain that loss. I won't try.
Much of the fight was just trying to stop the flood of bodies long enough to allow everyone else to retreat to Haven proper, where walls and proven defenses could keep us safe. Then it was an hour or more of fighting our way to the gates, then god knows how long holding a line so we could get inside. It all blurs together.
I do remember having my life saved by Big K. I've only seen him fight once or twice, but last night was something else. The guy is a demon with a spear, and for someone closer to seven feet tall than six, he can move like the wind. I'm not saying the guy was a kung-fu master or anything, but there wasn't a shred of fear in him as he skewered a zombie trying to maul my face and flung the damn thing over his shoulder like a pitchfork of hay.
I remember seeing K's eyes when he did it. There wasn't any anger there, or hate. Just calm attention. It was a little unnerving.
And now I'm starting to ramble. I'm going to listen to my body now, and my wife, and K, who are both over my shoulder trying to get me to rest. I've taken a few injuries, and both of them are mothering me the way they always do. From my wife I can manage that behavior. I guess I'll have to do the same for K since he's big enough to crush my head with one hand. Though considering the effort he went to saving my life, I'd be willing to bet he'll restrain himself.