(Deanna Hull continued from Disneyland's Enchanted Tiki Room)
Deanna looked out from near the Linens and Things entryway, gazed at the grocery store at the other side of the mall, and turned back. She leaned on what was once a jewelry counter and breathed in the air, at once regretting that decision.
"This whole place is creepy. It's dead and... old. Like turn of the century old."
The mall was grey and brown and yellowed with age. When the fuck had this place been abandoned? It must have been years ago, because Dee didn't think the terrorists would be dumb enough to move straight in to a recognizable place and set up shop. Whatever length of time it had been had done a number on the place. It didn't smell bad exactly, or musty, but even the faint scent of perfume from broken or spilled bottles reeked of time.
She concluded that it was pointless trying to puzzle that stuff out. Hell, speaking of time, they couldn't even figure out what time it was. Cell phones were all gone. Kind of made the windup alarm clock she'd snagged from the gift shop even more pointless in retrospect. On the way she'd tried to set it out of boredom, only to realize that duh, you needed to know the hour and day before you could do that. Asking Kyran had only garnered a smirk. So she tossed the alarm clock in a creek and had a third cigarette with him instead.
"Hey, maybe they have some of those old school watches that still work."
Yeah, watches and newspapers and compact discs. Relics of a bygone age. So was the shopping mall itself, for that matter. Maybe not. Dee guessed that bored teens would always need a place to hang out no matter how much they bought online. Kyran was hoping he'd find a skateboard somewhere; that was another thing that had survived a multiple generations. Rollerblades and those Heely sneakers Dee loved when she was 9 had spiralled into the dead abyss of pop culture fads, but others had at least survived.
Skateboards and malls and Survival of the Fittest.
Dee kicked a stray bottle under a counter, where it didn't even give her the pleasure of shattering. Yeah, SOTF survived. She just didn't. After all the taking and sucking at the tits of various zeitgeists: the Sephora eyeliner and the Amy Winehouse songs and the Skrillex haircuts; after all that it was time for Deanna Hull to give something back, and she was selfishly refusing to do anything but sulk, eat birdseed, and trade dry barbs with the guy who'd dragged her out of the ocean. Kyran had even helped Dee deprive the audience of a surprise -- and poetic -- early death.
Well, good. Dee would much rather stop by the mall and steal some food and new supplies and hang out like those normal boring Seattle days.
She traced a finger in the dust of the empty display case and called out to Kyran. He was an aisle or two over from her.
"Hey! Find anything?"
[[Kyran Dean Continued From: Disneyland's Enchanted Tiki Room.]]
Kyran wished he had said that while rolling down the aisle way, looking all slick and smooth on top of some random skateboard he'd found.
Instead, he was there shining his flashlight at the partially collapsed ruins of what looked like one of those old pillow and blanket forts he and his brothers used to make when they were very young. Only this fort wasn't made by children whose moms and dads would tell them to quit messing up the house and play outside or something.
Someone, one of his classmates had been camping out in here. It was a similar idea to what Kyran and Deanna had when it began nightfall, only they weren't quite as imaginative. Basically when they saw the sign, it meant pillows and blankets and probably a decent place to relax being that they still hadn't encountered anyone else the whole day even as they purposely searched for folks to watch or join or whatever.
It was starting to feel like he and Deanna were the only people around on this island. Except right now. Something happened here.
There was blood soaked in those sheets, fresh blood - and this was the closest thing to another person Kyran had contact with in three days other than Deanna. He rubbed the bridge of his nose with the back of his hand, shaking his head and taking a step back. He'd heard little snippets of this kind of stuff from that man on the morning announcements, but he hadn't actually witnessed much evidence of it first hand, for any of those three days. This was "it" in person.
Strong. Strong. Strong. Be strong Dean. Be brave.
This was just something new, so of course he was shocked, but he had to man up, because it would only get worse from here if he didn't.
So he steadied his breathing and moved closer to the semi-collapsed pillow fort, his flashlight finding bullet holes in the cushion and more puddles of blood, but no person. From the first big puddle there were smaller drops, a trail of sorts leading down the aisles and by then Dee had come over to see what was up.
Without moving his legs, Kyran followed the breadcrumbs with a beam from his flashlight. The trail led down the store and mysteriously disappeared through one of the exits. Yeah, he definitely wasn't going to stick around in this particular department store tonight, cause screw that.