We run until I know there are a couple of miles between us and the warehouse. I stop and Colin pauses next to me. Max is still limp over his shoulder. I notice that Colin is breathing hard. Not exactly out of breath but still more tired than me. I nod at the airport. The terminal is still burning but in the distance I can see a hanger. It’s isolated and there is nothing around it. I like it.
“What about there?” I ask.
Colin nods and we start walking across to it. I’m worried about Max, who isn’t moving at all. Colin sees me looking and he grimaces. We need to get him safe. The sun is hot, and that worries me.
The others don’t go out in the sun, it burns them. I don’t think they will do the vampire thing of bursting into flames but at this time of day it makes it tricky to hunt them. I realise that we were lucky to find the ones in the alley.
“We need to find some others,” I say.
I wonder if I can feed Max my blood. Colin seems to be thinking the same. “We could see if he’d take ours.”
“It might be our only option.” I grin. “Unless there is one in the hanger.”
Colin looks at the building with renewed interest. There is no sign that anyone has used it in a while, but the doors are closed. Including the large hanger door.
“Let’s hope,” he says.
It’s such an odd thought, to be looking for the things that scared me so much a little while ago. That makes me think of my mad flight to the telephone. I hope that the plan hasn’t changed. Actually, I don’t think it can. Ricky has forced our hand. Even if we wanted to change out minds, the fact that the group that released this is trying to find us, means we have to hand the vaccine over.
We reach the hanger and Colin gently leans Max against the wall. He sits and for the first time opens his eyes.
“You’re safe,” I say.
He closes them but I notice that he is frowning. The faster we can get him back on his feet the better. Colin has left me and I think he is jogging around the building. He comes back with a grin.
“There’s a door forced on the other side,” he says.
“So?” Okay, maybe I’m a little slow but I can’t see the importance.
“And I can smell others.”
Now I grin. Colin picks Max up and we go to the door. It has been pried open and is standing ajar. I go inside and take a look. It’s something I do naturally and I can feel Colin’s angry glance, but I don’t care.
“Be careful,” is all he says, but in those two words I can tell that he is really saying that I ought to let him take the risks. I bite my tongue, wanting to remind him that it was me that got him fixed last time. There had been no one else.
The hanger is open plan and luckily there are no planes. Instead it is a vast open room. There are a few doors to one side and I notice that they are two storey, as if the designer has placed a small house at one end. One of these rooms is open. Something walks past the door and I start toward it.
“Wait,” Colin says. He is inside and has placed Max next to the door. He stands next to me. “Together.”
I sigh but nod. I understand that he wants to protect me but I can’t just dump a life of feminism because I’m the only girl of our species.
He stops me with a hand on my arm. “Would you let me walk on there in my own?”
No,” I say, outraged.
He just smiles and I roll my eyes.
“Okay, so maybe I’m sensitive.”
“Maybe?” he asks, and I can hear the humour in his voice.
I don’t say anything else, I just shrug off his hand and walk toward the office. I don’t need to go far though as an other is coming toward us. This one hasn’t eaten in a while. It is slow and cumbersome. Once it must have been a person but as I watch the overweight other stagger toward us in overalls I only see it as a way to help Max.
“He stinks,” Colin says and he sounds mystified.
“Yes,” I say. “They do unless you need them.”
On the floor behind us Max gives a groan and I turn to see him trying to crawl forward, his teeth elongated and his eyes black. Colin looks and nods. He is then at the other and grabbing it so that it can’t get a bite into him. I don’t think he can be hurt by a bite, but I’m not certain. He quickly pulls it to me and holds it in place while Max crawls up its body. I know what he wants. The jugular, the largest vein with the richest source of blood.
As soon as he is able he latches onto the thing’s neck and drags them both down. He is insatiable.
I’m so busy watching that I don’t realise that there is something behind me until a claw latches into my hair. I give an embarrassingly girly squeak as the other tries to take a bite. I swing around and as I do I realise that there are five others, all of them staring at me.