The ruins of the old civilization laid in the distance. She had never been one to enjoy the company of hundreds of people at a time. It was the peace and quiet she liked, but for some reason she had chosen to live inside the borders of town. This was before she became infected herself, though her side effects were different from the others. It had all started when she needed some extra cash. An experimental drug had worked differently on the animals it was tested on, but when Rose Woods was injected with it, she had become a walking carrier for a virus people now called Shetani, a Swahili term for devil. Those who were immune to the airborne virus, could be affected by the bite of the infected. No one was really safe from the virus. It seemed that saliva was the viruses’ breeding ground and new strains were constantly created. Scientists couldn’t keep up with all of its mutations. Finding a vaccine would soon be impossible.

A civilization of humans lay just beyond the hills of town. They called their new civilization Nuevo. The people there had ill thoughts toward Rose, not because she carried the virus, but for something that she did. There had been a time when she knew most of the people in Nuevo. You see Rose had developed a special ability. Rather than turning into a zombie (the term used to depict the infected from humans), she could control those who became infected. Rose had used her abilities to help Connor Braxton, the leader of Nuevo, build the gates surrounding the civilization. It was designed to keep the stray infected out and humans inside safe. Connor had only used Rose to his advantage. Her response was what kept the others from trusting her. She had sent hundreds of zombies toward Nuevo, but didn’t finish with her attack. She knew thrashing out at them would make nothing change. She would only be feeding their hate towards her.

It had been a few years since then. Rose had been trying to get them to trust her again. She did this by helping them get the supplies they needed. They grew most of their food, it was medical supplies that they lacked. Occasionally she found people who were looking for a safe place to live and would bring them with her. The people of Nuevo would ask for items and Rose would get them, leaving it a few hundred yards from the main gates. When she left, the people would come out and get it. On one of her journeys, she had met a small child and her mother. The child had pouted because she left her cat at home. Rose promised the little girl that she would attempt to find her cat, a promise she still kept to this day.

On her current journey she had to venture to a place she hadn’t been in a long time. It was an old science building on the opposite side of town. Nuevo wanted the lab supplies that were still in the building. It was the only place in town that had been locked before the virus spread, meaning that no one should have been able to get in. It was the original lab that had been first used to find a cure. Many of the samples were still in the fridge. The scientist who first tried to find a cure were long gone, but everything was there. The few zombies that were roaming around outside wouldn’t give her trouble. She entered the code that she and only one other person knew. Back when the lab was used, she had given them her blood to test. It wasn’t long after that she learned of her powers. The scientists had her use, and test her powers by bringing zombies to the lab. They would then test their vaccines on them.

Upon opening the door, she spotted some things out of order. Bottles had been moved to other places. New footprints were also visible on the powder Rose had put down before she left the place for good, or so she had thought. No one else should have been there. The lock was also still on the door, so something had to break one of the small windows to get in. Rose searched the first floor and made her way to the second floor. It wasn’t until she was on the third floor that she noticed movement. They must have heard her come in and bolted. She said hello as friendly as she could. A group of people her age slowly came out. She had gone to school with some of them at one time. One of the guys, Kyle, she remembered was his name spoke, “Rose? I didn’t think that anyone was still living in this area. Those creatures out there are all over the world. The virus spread faster than any of us imagined. How did you get in? The door was locked.” he asked. She noticed the both guys had weapons on them. One she believed had a gun and the other a shotgun. They weren’t going to get many shell for them out here. If they were out, she would be safe.

“I had the code for the lock downstairs, given to me by the owner of this place. How exactly did you get in here?” Rose said. The women were covered in something black, Rose only could assume they came in through the fireplace shaft. “We broke one of the windows downstairs. There is like five extras in the basement. We replaced it so those things couldn’t get in and then bordered it up.” Rose looked out the window at the few infected that remained, waiting for their chance to get in, “you aren’t safe in here, there are infected in the attic and that door tends to open even when locked.” Kyle looked up and then back at me, “how do you know that?” Rose huffed but said, “because I put them up there. Let me explain. Do you remember when the news said that there was a woman that became patient X or the one that started this entire apocalypse thing?” they nodded their head, “well, that is me.” The blonde screamed, “get her out of here, we are going to get affected!” Rose just laughed at her and screamed over the blonde, “if you haven’t changed yet, you won’t change unless you are bitten by the infected out there!” The blonde stopped her warpath and glared at Rose. “We should leave soon though, it’s almost night. I can take you to a human civilization if you are willing to trust me, but first I need help getting the things on the list.” Rose stated. The guys nodded, but the women stood in the corner watching.

Rose gave the guys parts of her list. The samples of the virus she saved for herself. They needed to be carefully moved. The infected she had seen earlier wondered off. The sun was getting low, so she drove Kyle and the other to her home. It was nothing special, but would be big enough to house everyone. It was not a good idea to keep driving at night. Rose didn’t want to hit the infected on accident. The infected were still people after all, and if there ever was a cure, she wanted as many of them as possible to survive. The group Rose just found were hungry so she fed them and made a fire outside to cook dinner on. Power was scarce in these parts and the fire also would keep them warm for a while. The two women stood on their own talking amongst themselves while eating. Rose soon knew that Kyle was accompanied by Hannah, the women that spoke earlier, Sam, Ben, and Sarah. Rose knew Ben as well. He had also went to school with her. Rose wanted to scare the women for acting like an idiot earlier. She knew the fire would also serve as an attractant for one of the infected.

Rose’s assumption that one of the infected would find their camp was correct. She heard her companion’s screams, but she had already taken control of its actions. Whenever she connected with the infected she also saw part of their memories, that is why she knew the infected women was an accountant with two children. Rose had the infected person walk over to her. She heard the others gasp, but she then had the infected women sit down beside her. The infected women starred at Rose’s companions like they were food, but did not attack, “There is no need to be scared, come sit and I will tell you how I can do this.” Rose told the group her story, from beginning to end. The only thing she left out was using the infected to attack Nuevo. The women didn’t look too happy and that made Rose grin, in fact they were disgusted. Kyle speaking to her made her look back at them, “Have you ever tried killing the virus when you control the zombies? Maybe you are connected to the virus to think that it needs to die or something.” It wasn’t too crazy of an idea, and she hadn’t thought about trying. She looked over at the women she was still controlling. Rose had to go deeper into their subconscious, but she was able to destroy the virus inside of her.

The women looked at Rose, “W….w…..where am I? The last thing I remembered was running. Running from the zombies.” The women looked around at everyone staring at her. “Do you know your name?” Kyle asked. The women looked down at her fingers, which she was twiddling in her lap. “My name….my name is Caroline. My friends call me Carol though!” Carol said, enthused that she was remembering things. “Carol, you should rest some before the morning comes. You must be tired. Tomorrow we will go to the human civilization called Nuevo. Don’t be afraid, they will want to check and make sure you are truly alright,” Rose said. Soon Carol and everyone but Kyle and Hannah were sleeping. The other two sat with me by the fire. “You aren’t going to stay at Nuevo are you?” Kyle asked. “There is something I should tell you. A long time ago I used my power to get back at the leader who banned me from his civilization after I helped him build it. For those actions, I have been trying to repent for them. I scared everyone, which is why even though that leader is long gone, I have not yet been allowed in.” Rose said. “Why do you call them infected, not zombies?” Hannah questioned. It was so random, that it took rose a few seconds to gain her thoughts, “Zombie makes them seem non-human, and they are technically human. Calling them infected sounds better to me I suppose.” Hannah thought about Rose’s answer as they all decided to go to bed.
The next day Adam drove everyone, and the supplies within a mile of Nuevo. Rose took her motorcycle. Rose’s drop off point had a giant red mark on the ground. She knew Nuevo had put sensors underground to detect trucks, hence the marks to cover them up. She also knew the guards were watching them at this moment. Before they had left, Rose had spotted the little girl’s cat sitting on her step. The cat was also in the truck sitting on Sarah’s lap, whom had a picture of the little girls so she knew who to give him too. Rose used a mirror to signal to the men, whom returned her favor. “Alright guys,” she said to everyone in the vehicle, “this is where I leave you. If you drive straight in, they will take care of you. Don’t forget to make sure they look at Carol and to get ahold of me on that radio channel,” they nodded. Someone was missing from their group, “where is Kyle,” Rose asked. Everyone looked around, “I’m over here he said,” he was sitting on Rose’s motorcycle. She motioned for him to get in the vehicle, “don’t think you are going to save the world without me, after all it was my idea. Besides, I think I’m safer with you anyway.” Rose didn’t know what to think, but if she remembered him right, he was too stubborn to change his mind.

She drove them both back to her house, patiently waiting for their answer while they packed her father’s old truck with supplies. Later that night Adam got on the radio and told them that whatever Rose had done, changed Carol back to a human. Adam had also told the general in charge how it happened. They wanted Rose to come to Nuevo and join forces with them, however she knew saving the world would be faster on their own. “Are you ready to save the world Kyle?” Rose asked once they were in the vehicle and had managed to get her motorcycle on the back. “As ready as I ever will be babe,” he kissed her for a few seconds. Rose smiled and drove off into the night to repent for her actions and save the world.