Door unlocking upon clearance, Ally emerges from her room and into a ship scarred by situation. Every deck seemingly outfitted with an armed patrol man, the ship transforms from a sanctuary vessel to a prison boat in the blink of an eye, each step being one made with caution. “Everyone be weary of what you say” Ally whispers, those behind her made aware that something is off.
“Everyone gather the-” Ally starts, her orders impeded when a disguised Theo grabs her by the inner elbow and leads her away, directing his remaining survivors into a small and quaint corner. “We need to figure out how to get off this ship” Theo says, his words kept brief, but the vagueness of his statement causing the need to say more.
“They’ve got some fucked up system that I don’t understand working as currency on this thing” Theo explains, further confessing to the murder of a ship worker in the inventory room. “What the hell did you do!?” Jenn asks, Theo explaining the events as they happened, holding a pillow case out with his hand, ruffled papers within shuffling around with every slight movement.
“I’m telling you, there is something wrong here and shit is about to hit the fan” Theo continues, “so we need a way off this thing and we need it now.” Shaking her head, Ally refuses, the group still without the man they were led aboard by. “Until we get Lou, we’re not leaving this ship” Ally explains, “if you want to talk about this plan, we’ll talk about it when we get Lou back.”
With a deep breath, Theo informs Ally that they’re no longer certain he’s still alive. “Look at this place!” Theo mutters, his hand extended towards each corner, all guarded by patrol. “We’ve been here just a few, short weeks and we’ve already seen what happens when shit gets bad” Theo continues, “we don’t wanna be around when it all comes crashing down.”
“Did you put the worker out or did you leave him?” Jenn asks, the question needing to be asked for a full picture. “I left him” Theo replies, disappointment draining the life behind his reply, making it clear that the potential for another outbreak is coming quickly. “We’re on a boat in the freezing Pacific, probably hours away from being overrun” Theo explains, “I don’t wanna believe Lou’s dead, but this boat either goes down with just Lou dead, or all of us dead.”
Her head hung, Ally stops listening to any further point in the conversation, her eyes glazing over while her head shakes from one side to another. Every word spoken being dulled down, her own name brings her back, her eardrum almost expanding upon it’s verbalization. Wiping her eyes, Ally glances back towards the woman who called for her, Jenn telling Ally that the decision is being left up to her.
Biting her lip, Ally tells the group to put a plan together with the intention of informing her when it’s made. “Until we have a way off this boat, I’m using the time I’ve got on it to find Lou” Ally explains, splitting away from the huddled core and travelling into the depths of the vessel. Her travels taking her to the captain’s deck, Ally places her fist against the metal door and opens upon invitation.
“You said you’d rather this ship go down than stay afloat if what you think is happening actually is, right?” Ally asks, Brunskill looking back to her with a worried face. “I have it on good authority that an outbreak is about to occur on this ship and I need Lou back right now” Ally explains, Brunskill taking in a deep breath before allowing it to gradually leave his lungs.
Leaving his post, Brunskill approaches Ally, his hands extended and placed upon each of her shoulders. “I’ve been informed that Lou is no longer on board this ship” Brunskill explains, his eyes lifting towards a confused Ally. “Where the hell could he have gone? We haven’t docked for passengers yet!” Ally replies, her response immediately bringing the eyes of bewilderment over Brunskill, who asks her to specify what she meant behind that.
“Jenn and Halston scouted out the entry deck the last time we docked and they said it was left completely empty” Ally replies, “no passengers on, no passengers off… Just cargo.” Having followed along through the first portion of the response, Brunskill is taken aback by the final. “Ally, this isn’t a cargo ship” Brunskill replies, Ally informing the captain of exactly what Jenn and Halston had reported with.
“The boat loaded a bunch of crates on and off the boat at the port!” Ally replies, “she saw the big door open and all the stuff be loaded on. She wouldn’t lie about that.” His hands no longer pressed to each side of the woman, Brunskill steps back to his wheel, his hands left to his side as his eyes press against the rippling surface of the water.
“Captain!” Ally calls out, her final statement yet to be responded to, the man just eerily staring out into the water with a horrified expression. His lips puckered, Brunskill removes his hat and captain’s shirt, returning to the woman and handing them to her. “I need you to man the ship while I’m away” Brunskill replies, his voice showing a stern, unmoving confidence in his orders.
“The ship is headed for still waters for the next few hours, you should have no problem steering the vessel” Brunskill explains, the hat and shirt a few sizes too big on Ally. “If I’m not back in the next few hours…” Brunskill begins, pausing for a moment to think about such a conclusion to his life and story, “...Run this son of a bitch into whatever beach, building or island you can find.”
Her mouth agape, Ally can only muster the captain’s name again before he disappears behind the heavy metal door, his intentions set and unwavering. Left to her lonesome, Ally tosses the captain’s hat over her head and pulls the shirt over her body, hands barely able to peer through the sleeves. Cautiously approaching the wheel, Ally stands in place, statue-esque with a full view of the vast ocean before her, all to be travelled beneath her watchful eye.
= RISE and REVOLT is created by Zachary Serra, all rights to the series from Season 1 onwards belong to Zachary Serra and the entity of Pacer1 Media =
“Tell me more about this currency” Jenn requests, the trio returning to Theo’s cabin in time for the man to dump every slip he kept on his person atop the bed. “There has to be hundreds, and they’ve all unique” Theo explains, “not one is the same, they all have a recipient, they all have a seller.”
“Does this have anything to do with the murder?” Halston asks, “none of this means anything unless we can fit it with something else.” With a sigh, Theo reiterates what he said minutes prior. “It could be within a matter of minutes or hours before this boat goes up in an outbreak” Theo restates, “we’ve got no time to put the pieces together here.”
Her head shaking, Jenn ruffles through the papers and hopes for something to catch her eyes, every name, recipient and wager all falling into the same category. “I don’t know what to do with these” Jenn admits, “keep them in case they come in handy, but let’s not put all of our hope in them.” Looking towards the porthole, Jenn places her hands to her hips for a few seconds before noticing the ever-present silence.
Her head turning back to the group, Jenn notices all eyes left on her, remembering her voice to be representative to that of the leader’s. “Spotlight’s on you, Jenn” Terry mutters, “take us home.”
With a nod, Jenn walks up to the porthole and unclasps the latch, allowing the cool sea breeze to encompass the room. “We can’t be too far from the next coastline” Jenn suggests, a sigh following the statement as she has to admit a harsh truth to herself. “That said, it’s too far out to get to before shit hits the fan” Jenn concludes, “if we’re going to make it to Seattle, we’re going to need more time.”
In aggravation, Jenn reaches into the mini-bar and pulls a travel-sized bottle of rum, popping the cap off with ease and taking a healthy swig. Her arm wiping the remaining drink from her lips, Jenn makes a dash for the door, the group behind her calling her back. “Where are you going?” Halston asks, Jenn halfway out of the door before her response can begin. “I’m buying us time” Jenn replies, slamming the door shut behind her, disappearing into the ship with her bottle in hand.
The sight of him out of his quarters enough to be amazed at, Brunskill walking with authority, his expression being that of an angered man elicits a silent stare from all that he passes. Hands unmoving, pointed straight downwards by his sides, Brunskill navigates the halls as if he had grown up on them, eyes without a blink.
Without hesitation, Brunskill descends the staircase into some of the lowest available depths of the ships, pushing the door to one of the rooms open without knocking. “Captain!” Matt exclaims, fixing himself into a suit as the sun begins to set upon the Pacific, “what brings you out of your quarters?”
Walking in the rest of the way, Brunskill closes the door behind himself and asks a fairly straight forward question. “What are you doing?” Brunskill inquires, Matt shrugging his shoulders, simply exclaiming that he’s getting ready. “Why do you look like you’re hosting a funeral?” Brunskill follows, a laugh coming from Matt as he tells Brunskill that he’s a funny man.
“I’m not joking, Matthew” Brunskill replies, “what are you getting dressed up for? You’re one of the lead guards in our ranking.” Finger raised, Matt corrects Brunskill in his statement, cockiness dripping from the man like water drips from a shirt upon exiting a pool. “I’m the lead guard in our ranking, Captain!” Matt replies, “that gives me a few perks that most don’t have.”
Returning to his mirror, Matt fixes the basics, straightening the tie and perfectly mirroring the cuffs of the shirt beneath his blazer to that of the one of the opposite arm. “What’s the occasion?” Brunskill proceeds, Matt explaining the addition to weekly events since the last time Brunskill showed interest in the boat. “I’ve always shown interest in the boat” Brunskill replies, a smile on Matt’s face beginning to present itself when Brunskill explains that it’s his boat.
“Anything done upon this boat is something done upon my boat” Brunskill adds, “if there is an event that you must attend tonight, I am to be informed of it as always.” With a chuckle, Matt tells Brunskill to reach the bottom of a bottle by the end of the night and hole himself back into his nest behind the wheel of the Euronam. Preparing to walk past the man without confrontation, Matt is shoved against the wall, Brunskill pressing his arm against the chest of his head guard.
“Repeat what you just said” Brunskill orders, Matt laughing off the attempt to look strong, telling his captain to stop holding the truth against him. “You’re the most notorious drinker aboard this ship bar none” Matt replies, “so if you really don’t like the fact that I’m having myself a night of fun, finish a bottle by the time sundown comes and you’ll forget all about it.”
His face subtly shaking with anger, Matt watches it all seem to slowly drift away, a smile coming over Brunskill’s face as his head calms to a still. “Go have fun, kid” Brunskill replies, releasing his grip on the man and patting him on the cheek. “Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do” Brunskill concludes, moving aside for Matt to walk off, watching the man disappear around the corner before his smile fades away, making room for the angered expression to return.
Her knife ready, Jenn navigates the halls of the ship towards the inventory room, the further she descends into the ship, the worse the atmosphere and feeling becomes. Each wall getting tighter the further she goes, each breath getting thinner the further she dives, and each light getting dimmer the farther Jenn attempts to sink into the ominous vessel.
Her heavy boots clambering against the cold steel floors, Jenn turns onto the final hallway before coming to a complete stop. Knife in hand, blade dangling from behind her fingertips, Jenn stands in place with a thousand yard stare towards her destination. Stood there in silence, multiple guards await the arrival of someone beside a pile of two undead corpses.
Having gotten bored enough to sit around stare at the walls, the men finally notice the woman having discovered their presence, immediately calling for her to stop. Knowing the warning signs when they are presented, Jenn makes a dash back for the way she came, squeezing through each hallway and pushing herself away from every wall and into a new direction.
Demands for her to stop the chase continuing to echo throughout the cramped walls, Jenn remains stranded in refusal, taking little time to look down each new passage before taking it. Guns drawn, the guards begin to fire, knowing that any further distance created would result in the loss of the suspect. The first few bullets fired serving as warning shots, all those that follow are shot with the intent to kill, Jenn continuing to take any route she can to avoid detection.
Suddenly, the passages Jenn finds herself getting lost within become darker the deeper she delves before the entire stretch of hallway she traverses becomes pitch black. Out of breath, Jenn throws herself against a wall and slumps into the corner, intending to hide beneath the nature darkness surrounding her. Head tilted up, Jenn calms her breaths until they become nearly silent, her chest heaving up and down as the footsteps of her pursuers grow closer.
“I’m not hearing her!” one of the guards shouts, the response from his radio bellowing throughout the halls at the highest volume possible. Over the next few seconds, the footsteps grow softer and softer, a run seemingly becoming a walk, and a walk seemingly becoming a stroll. “We lost her” the guard radios in, the dark tunnels becoming gradually brighter the closer the footsteps near.
Swallowing the spit in her lungs, Jenn takes in a final breath and holds it, the two guards finally stopping at the end of the hallway she hides within. Headlamps upon their heads illuminating even the darkest of tunnels, all it takes is the moment when the men turn in her direction for cover to be blown. “Stop!” the first guard shouts, gun drawn in Jenn’s direction as the woman throws herself to her feet and dives within one of the halls, narrowly escaping a bullet.
Back up, Jenn continues running, the guards having reached the final stretch of space available, turning their lights in her direction to bring light to a dead end. Eyes widened, Jenn notices her only hope at survival rests in a door just a few feet away from her, dodging every shot that pops off before her hand grabs at the handle and pulls.
It’s back slamming against the wall, the door is forced open, Jenn dashing inside at the sight of a faint, orange glow as another shot is fired, missing her neck by inches. Pulling the door shut, Jenn locks the men out and places her back against the cold metal, catching her breath for a moment before she opens her eyes, smile fading. Mere yards away from her, a horde of the undead take notice of her presence, turning around to notice the woman now caught between two fates.
Huddled together, speaking with a hushed tone, Halston, Terry, Jules and Theo speak about their next moves when their door is forced in by a stern boot. Door splintering into pieces, Drew leads his guards inside, demanding those huddled together present their hands into the air. “What’s going on!?” Halston exclaims, Drew approaching her first before slamming the stock of his gun into her jaw, knocking her to the ground with a thud.
Infuriated, Jules leaps to his feet to defend the woman, meeting a similar fate from his blindspot, Terry and Theo left to do as told to avoid a similar fate. “Where are they?” one of the guards demands to know, his rifle and question aimed at Theo. At first confused, Theo slowly comes to realize what he’s being asked, his expression shifting into one of silent declaration that no questions shall receive answers.
Taking the expression for what it was intended to be, the guard declares all the inhabitants of the room to be held under arrest, Terry explaining that they have no probably cause to hold them. “As Matt said a while baack, the law is dead” Drew exclaims, “we’re all the probable cause we need.”
Without further response, Terry places his hands above his head, allowing the cuffs to be placed on him as Theo does the same. One after another, the foursome are led from their rooms and towards the cells, the sight of their capture being visible to all still trapped within their homes on the deck. “Where are they being taken!?” Elsie shouts from within her sanctum, Josie and herself still unable to escape the confines they’ve been placed within.
Her demands for answers being left unheard, Elsie shouts through the soundproof glass to no avail, one guard walking past her window flipping her off with a smile before walking off. “We’re gonna get out of here” Josie explains, nodding to herself as Elsie stands at the viewing lens, hand balled into a fist against the glass.
Metal door squealing upon being pushed open, Ally exits the captain’s deck and ventures onto the tiny platforms just outside. The cool air ripping through her hair and dashing against her face, Ally takes in the sights she may never get to experience again, nearly missing the one path she had left untaken in her time in the captain’s seat.
Approaching the center of the platform, the woman reaches out and begins crawling up thee arching ladder, the platform she scales taking her higher up than anyone else on the ship. Nearly losing her balance multiple times, Ally reaches her end point, grabbing onto the thin post in the center of the small basket she stands upon. Going from the captain’s nest to the literal nest, Ally presses her hands against the railing, watching the ship she stands in control of sail.
Tied to the railing, a pair of binoculars dangle with the wind, easily picked up into the woman’s hands and pressed to her eyes. Through the cloudy layer of fog, the dark Seattle needle towers into the sky, the coastal town left weathered by the outbreak, blanketed by nothingness. With a smile, Ally leaves the binoculars to flow with the wind, enjoying the view for a few further moments before returning to the cabin.
Walking in, Ally notices a man left waiting for her in the seat she once occupied, a gun held in one hand, resting in his lap. A shared moment of silence between the two, the unnamed man dressed in civilian clothing apologizes for the work that he has been ordered to do. “Who ordered you?” Ally asks, a smile coming from her would-be murderer as he shrugs, insisting that it no longer matters.
With a nod, Ally reaches beside her and yanks the fire extinguisher from the wall, blowing a puff of smoke and filling the cabin with a dusting white. Both coughing amidst the flurry, Ally composes herself enough to begin swinging with the hefty weight of metal, anything before her falling victim to a crushing impact. After the first few blind swings, Ally finally connects with a fair swing, the crunching sound of bone preceding a crash and a thud.
Door to the cabin opening, the smoke begins to dissipate, the violent sight presenting itself through the foggy haze. “Hands in the air!” the voice shouts, gun drawn towards the unresponsive figure wailing away at what rests beneath her. Smoke finally clearing out enough for a presentable picture to be made, Drew’s jaw drops, his eyes widening as the sights are made clearer.
Stood over the man with a crushed skull and gun by his side, Ally swings the large, red cannister down time after time again, splattering blood all across the room. Finally gaining the understanding of the situation, Drew fires his gun, a bullet striking Ally in the back of the shoulder, pushing her into the wheel before she collides with the ground.
Gun still drawn, Drew approaches the woman, passing by the body of the man with the grapefruit skull and declaring the woman to be under arrest. Hands behind her back, the cuffs lock into place, the wounded woman being escorted through the ship with a blood splatter covering her face.
Dragged into the depths of the ship, Ally is thrown into a single cell of her own, dropping to her knees after colliding with the cement wall. Grunting in pain from the wound the bullet tearing through her body left, Ally slinks herself against the ground and stares towards the ceiling. Cracked from a failure to provide proper upkeep, the ceiling allows drops of water to fall onto whatever lays beneath, this instance happening to provide a wounded Ally to receive such droplets.
With a sigh, Ally glances upwards, a decaying yellow tube light across the dirty concrete wall her new home behind a set of thick steel bars. Not wishing to subject herself to the sight any longer, Ally closes her eyes, whispering to herself that she’ll open her eyes to reveal this as nothing more than a horrible dream. With three breaths, Ally allows her eyes to open to no change, a single tear running down the side of her bloody face.
“They’ve got it out for us” a familiar voice calls out, Ally taking interest in the sound enough to push herself to a seated position, the back of her head against the bars between herself and the source. With her good side, Ally pulls herself around, looking at the four recognizable faces welcoming her into the underbelly of the Euronam’s underbelly.
“What’s going on?” Ally asks, Terry dropping his head as Jules explains that they’ve all been led astray. “There’s something going on inside this ship that they’re keeping quiet” Halston explains, “and I’d put my money on us being the scapegoats if push comes to shove.” With a faint breath, Ally proclaims that they need to find a way off the ship, which is a concept agreed upon by all five parties.
“The question isn’t should we, the question is how” Theo replies, Ally looking out into the tiny space they’ve been holed into, the makeshift prison being completely vacant aside from her group. “We’ll find a way” Ally replies, slowly drawing her head back to those she shares being held in captivity with. “We’re going to get out of here, and we’re going to make them pay” Ally reiterates, a look of confidence providing her fellow inmates with hope there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.
“That’s good to hear, thank you” Alex replies, the volume on his radio soft and concealed, Lee meeting with him in the break room as they had agreed upon. “Sorry if it’s not the most presentable” Lee explains, Matt’s business suit being accented by Lee’s business casual appearance. “There’s not much to dig up on this ship, you’ll be fine” Matt replies, leading Lee down the corridor and into the lesser travelled halls of the boat.
As they venture into new territory, the welcoming lights of a luxury cruise ship turn into the bright whites of an environmentalist’s green room. Feeling changing from that of comfort into that of necessity, Lee finds Matt leading him to a familiar site, one shrouded in as much myth as realism.
“It’s nothing to be scared of” Matt explains, his hand pushed out towards the sanctioned off sections of the ship, the tape usually dignifying the route as off limits no longer present. “What’s down there?” Lee asks, Matt reaching out and pulling Lee’s in his direction, a smile of anticipation falling over the man as they close in. “Our destination for this fine evening” Matt replies, taking the first step down the staircase and into the boat’s unknowns.
Hidden from sight, Brunskill keeps pace, slowly following after the pair, his hand waving off anyone attempting to formally greet him. Descending the staircase, Brunskill reaches the bottom, the sights of a gaming center ripped straight out of a steampunk novel left to greet him. “Captain Brunskill!” the figure manning the counter exclaims, Brunskill left to wave the man off as he walks after Matt.
Passing by white boards and chalk boards, Brunskill is met with the appearance of a familiar name written across the signage. Eyebrows lowered in anger, Brunskill marches on, his pace quickening as his anger becomes harder to conceal.
“We’re just in time for the big event!” Matt exclaims, looking at all those writing upon small pieces of paper with eager eyes before the lights above dim. “It’s time for your main event, ladies and gentlemen!” the figure blasting his voice over the loudspeaker shouts, suggesting everyone place their wager cards in before the betting counters close for the night.
Not wanting to cause a disruption, Brunskill approaches the terrace, walking towards the other side of the pit from that of which Matt and Lee occupy, a sickening sight greeting him below. One level down, a horde of the undead are kept held behind chain link fencing, a small door easily able to be opened and closed the only thing keeping them from their side of the grounds.
“Send in the big man!” the announcer calls out, abruptly ending the intake of wagers and signalling for the counters to roll their steel barricades down. Lights lifting back into the harsh white, the appearance of a sporting event begins, crowd cheering and the dead being riled up by men armed with clubs below. Within seconds, the doors to the depths of the boat are opened, a man armed with nothing walking into the center of the level below.
“Oh my god” Lee mutters beneath his breath, not only understanding what’s happening, but understand who it is happening to. Their jobs done, the men with clubs shove a large crate over, allowing cinder blocks and other small weapons to fall across the floor. At the sound of a buzzer, the large fencing collapses to the ground, the army of the undead left with full access to their next meal.
Unmoving, the man at the center of it all stands completely still, staring the army of the dead down with vicious eyes as a concerned Lee watches on. “Trust me, he’ll be fine” Matt assures, his calming tone suggesting to Lee that this outcome has played out multiple times before. Finally moving his hand from his side, the figure reaches towards the ground and retrieves a piece of rebar and marches forward.
Eye twitching, Brunskill can only stare angrily at the events unfolding below, his eyes reaching back towards Matt at the same moment as the man on the opposite side finally notices him. An expression of disappointment coming over Matt’s face, the man returns to his viewing, watching the bloodshed below. Armed with nothing more than what he picked up, the figure below goes off on the undead, picking them off one after another, bodies stacked upon each other.
Finally, the figure reaches the final group, the five that remained standing now dropped in nearly the same breath they were released. One final undead left having gotten caught beneath another corpse, the figure marches forward and kicks the body from atop it, setting it free and backing away.
With a deep breath, the figure lets the rebar spin between his fingers or a moment whilst the dead closes the distance, his time to strike affording itself. In one breath, the dead has its skull split in a cross-section, the first wave cleared out to a massive ovation. “Round one to the big man!” the announcer shouts, the lights above now brighter than before, illuminating the man’s face to those stood above.
A sigh of relief paired with an anxious expression, Lee glances down at the man, the familiar face staring back at him with shocked eyes. Head tilted up, Lou crouches on one knee with the rebar still in hand, amazed at the sight of a familiar face whilst another horde is gathered. Slowly stood to his feet, Lou turns his attention away from Lee and onto Matt, eyes of contempt staring a hole into Matt’s soul.
With a smile, Matt puts his hands out and shrugs, an angered Lou ready to snap until the sound of unfamiliar squeals fill the room. The crowd dying to silence, all eyes are placed on the space behind the contained horde, Lou left completely in the dark as the lights go out, the pit illuminated by only one, dim fire’s orange glow. Before the dead can pile into the next wave, Lou catches the glimpse of the figure having unceremoniously found her way inside.
Eyes widened, Lou stands in shock at Jenn on the other end of the fence, faced against the next wave he was meant to endure. On instinct alone, Lee leaps over the bannister and drops himself into the pit, the curious crowd questioning each other as to what is happening. Shouting the woman’s name, Lee rushes towards the bin of discarded weapons and picks up a broken baseball bat, hurling it over the gate and into the hands of Jenn.
His own mallet in hand, Lee looks towards Lou, nodding to the man as Lou demands the next wave be freed. To a standing ovation, the crowd erupts, gate falling as the bright white lights return overhead, the three survivors waging war on the next wave from all sides.
== RISE and REVOLT ==