Strap yourself into that helicopter seat, it's going to be a bumpy ride...
Survived the CrashEdit
While en route to Abel Township from Mullins Military Base, your transport helicopter, designated "Jolly Alpha Five Niner", is hit by a rocket attack and crashes. The crash site is full of zombies and Sam Yao, the radio operator from Abel Township, begs you to run for your life. You proceed to run away from the crash site and the zombies as well as your dying/dead pilot.
Heading for Gryphon TowerEdit
Sam is excited to see you escaping the zombies on foot, but warns of a "small army of zombies" to the east. Dr. Maxine Myers, Abel's medic, interrupts to ask you to change directions and collect medical supplies from the old Robinson Hospital.
Searching the HospitalEdit
Sam decides to call you "Runner 5", as Abel recently lost a Runner with that number. Sam explains that the Runners gather all of Abel's supplies, given that there's not enough fuel to use cars. He also asks you to keep an eye out for any "official-looking files" in the hospital - they might be important.
Escaping the Hospital with the CDC FileEdit
Dr Myers recognises a box you have collected as an important CDC file, and insists that it might be worth your life to protect. Implying that they might not let you in without it. Unfortunately, Sam also informs you that you have attracted the attention of a swarm of zombies.
Running for SafetyEdit
Sam is alarmed at how fast the zombies are moving. They are gaining on you quickly. The lead zombie appears to be the old Runner 5, Alice. Runner 7, Abel's head of Runners, transmits a word of encouragement.
Arrived at Abel TownshipEdit
As you reach Abel with the zombie in tow, Sam is distraught to watch Abel's soldiers shoot the old Runner 5. Finally safe, you are greeted by the people of Abel and Runner 7.
[setting: inside a helicopter in flight]
HELICOPTER PILOT: [to you] Abel Township’s just on the horizon - see it now? Not much more than a few fences to keep the zoms out. I don’t know how they live like that. Guess they won’t be living like that much longer.
[over radio] Abel Township - Jolly Alpha Five Niner from Mullins Military Base. We’re five miles out, approaching from the east, bringing med supplies, shelters, and loan of one of our people. Abel Township - Jolly Alpha Five Niner, requesting permission to land.
RADIO OPERATOR: [over radio] Got that… ah, I-I mean, roger that. You’re clear to… yeah, you can - you can come on in.
HELICOPTER PILOT: [over radio] Roger, Abel - heading down now. [to you] Level with me. You and me both know we haven’t got half of the usual supplies. We’ve lied to the township! … Yeah, I know, you don’t know anything. Someone at Abel is going to come up to you and say, “I’m here to brief you on Project Greenshoot”, and then you’ll find out what your mission really is. I just…
[distant shooting] What the…? Someone’s shooting! That’s not from the township… who the hell has a rocket launcher at this base? [a rocket launcher fires and strikes the helicopter] We’ve been hit! I’ve lost the tail rotor… [over radio] Mayday, mayday, mayday, Jolly Alpha Five Niner going down, three miles east of Abel Township. Two souls on board.
RADIO OPERATOR: [over radio] This is Abel Township calling. Supply copter, can you hear us? You’re coming down fast… can any of you hear us? Open your shoots! Jump, jump! [parachute deploys, helicopter crashes]
Hey, hey! I, uh… this is Abel Township calling, over? If there’s anyone alive, if you’ve got your parachute open, this is Sam Yao, from Abel Township. Aww, I’m just the… I’m just the radio operator, man, I’m not supposed to handle this stuff!
[person in parachute lands] You’ve come down in a horde of zombies. They’ve heard the noise, they’re coming! There are - thirty? No, forty - aw, crap! You’re only safe path is towards the tower. If there’s anyone alive there, just run. Run!
SAM YAO: Wow, there’s… there’s someone alive down there, running! Hey, can you hear me? … No answer. But still, just look at ‘em go! Heading for the tower, just like I said. Okay… running person. If you can hear me, well, you’re doing great. The main group’s behind you, and you’re going to come out of this forest soon, but there’s a… yeah, well, I-I can’t think of a phrase that’s not “small army of zombies”. Sorry, don’t do so well under massive pressure.
There’s a… well, one of those, directly to the east of the trees. So, if you head more towards the old saw mill - you should be able to see it’s massive red signs from where you are… man, look at that, they’re changing direction! They can… You can hear me! [laughs] Okay, okay, we can keep you safe. It’s cool, it’s cool, we can bring you in. [a whisper in the background] No, we can’t ask them that! They might be injured!
MAXINE MYERS: Well, all the more reason to ask them that! This is Doctor Myers, only medic here at Abel Township. Lord knows I’m sorry to ask you this, but your route will take you almost past the old hospital. We know there are medical kits still there from the first wave of infection - if you could pick up even one or two, that would help us.
SAM YAO: It’s too dangerous! You know what happened to Runner Five!
MAXINE MYERS: The zoms have all followed the noise of the crash!
SAM YAO: But what about whoever fired that rocket launcher?
MAXINE MYERS: If someone wants to kill that runner, taking an unusual route will make it even harder, not easier! I don’t want to be hard-headed, but everyone in this township earns their keep. You should be able to see the Robinson hospital now - one of the buildings, Gryphon Tower, it’s the tallest in the abandoned city, and if you can’t find anything… we might not be able to let you in when you get here.
SAM YAO: Okay, okay… Man, that’s great, you’re making good time. No broken legs, I guess. [laughs] Hey, uh, listen… I’m gonna call you Runner Five. Um, just 'cause… well, I don’t know your name, and we just lost a runner, in that same hospital you’re running through now. She was so fast, really funny, and clever. Me and her, we sort of… [sighs] She was amazing. But hey! You could be our new Runner Five! If you make it back alive…
Yeah, um, the runners are pretty important to keeping us going here. Any fuel we have goes to working the generators, and the truth is, if you’ve got two legs and you can go above a slow shamble, you’ll be able to stay out the zoms’ way, am I right? …
Yeah, okay, your pace is good, but, um, maybe head through the ground floor of the hospital. There’s a little swarm gathering in the parking lot I don’t like the look of, and um… Yeah, yeah, that’s good… You could even pick up anything interesting you pass. We think there might be some… well, we sent the old Runner Five there looking for some file the Doc’s interested in, so uh, you know, if you find anything official-looking lying around, just bring it home.
SAM YAO: Hey, there you are! I’ve got you on camera now. Great to see you, even though you’re kinda blurry. [laughs] Uh, what’s that you’re carrying? Look at this, Doc - Runner Five picked up something in the hospital.
MAXINE MYERS: Is that the Centers for Disease Control file?
SAM YAO: What’s that?
MAXINE MYERS: Runner Five, I don’t say this lightly - that box could be worth your life to protect. Don’t drop it.
SAM YAO: What is it?
MAXINE MYERS: Oh, it might be nothing, it might be everything.
SAM YAO: So, a pretty narrow window of definition.
MAXINE MYERS: What’s that shadow over there?
SAM YAO: Aw, aww, no! This was what - when we sent her out, this was what happened! They’re following you, Runner Five - the swarm from the car park, they’re following you! Now, run!
SAM YAO: They’re so fast, why are they so fast? They never run, why are they running?? Runner Five? Runner Five, they’re gaining on you!
MAXINE MYERS: Runner Five, you’re not far from the gates now. If you can keep going, we’ll send some people with guns out to meet you. Only one zombie is close to reaching you, just put on a burst of speed, now!
SAM YAO: Oh, God… it’s her. I can see her… it’s Alice, it’s the old Runner Five. She’s the one chasing you, she’s… she’s still wearing her headset! She’s…
RUNNER SEVEN: [interrupts] Runner Five, it’s Runner Seven here, head of runners. The doctor’s told me you found something useful in the hospital. We’re sending out a couple of people to bring you in. Just keep running, as fast as you can! Don’t look back, she’s right behind you… just run!
ABEL GUARD: This way, run!
SAM YAO: They’re going to shoot her. I-I can’t watch, I don’t want to…
MAXINE MYERS: It’s what she would have wanted Sam, you know it is. She wouldn’t have wanted to live like this.
ABEL GUARD: Run, we’ve got her covered!
SAM YAO: Raise the gates… Raise the gates!
[gate siren; the mechanical sounds of the gates raising]
VARIOUS UNIDENTIFIED VOICES: Welcome! - The Major will want to see you when she gets back. - Hey, great to see a new face! - Did you bring any food? Any canned food, dried food? - Hey, you’ve picked up some med packs!
SAM YAO: Hey! Good to see you in the flesh… the totally-unbroken, skin-not-bitten-by-zombies flesh, right? Step back, step back everyone, don’t crowd! Give Runner Five some space! Can’t take in so many new faces right now.
UNIDENTIFIED VOICE: [whispers] That’s who they’ve assigned for Project Greenshoot.
This might just be the reason they let you into Abel Township at all. You picked up this box-file while running through the hospital - anything labelled CDC is worth taking. It’s got all the notes inside of anything that had been discovered about the zombie virus before major comms networks finally went dark forever. The research makes it clear there’s no chance for a cure… even a vaccine could take decades of work by teams of dedicated researchers. Which is not a thing we have anymore.
That run was epic, Runner Five. I mean I… I hope you don’t mind me calling you Runner Five. We do need a new one. I’ll see if I can dig out some of the previous Runner Five’s stuff. There’s a backpack with “5” on it and stuff.
Anyway look, this is your bunk. I know it’s not much, but we take what we can get in the zombie apocalypse, right? And you’re only sharing this room with three other runners so that’s an improvement on Mullins! We’ve radioed Mullins and, yeah, sorry, they say they’re not sending another chopper for you. Too dangerous what with rocket launchers and stuff. But we’re doing well here on our own, Five. We really are. It’s not a bad place to live. Really. I’ve left you a few things to get you started: you’ve got your own toothbrush and towel! And if you find stuff while you’re running it’s yours to scavenge.
Listen, we’re glad to have you here. We’ve all got to stick together now most of the humans… aren’t human. That’s what we do at Abel - we look after each other.
If you need to chat, come and talk any time.