The next few days went by rather smoothly for the group. After the meeting they were able to find the supplies the Moran Family had stored away for strengthening their fences. It was a bunch of barbed wire along with several planks and post of wood to be used to replace any broken parts of the fence. All of the stuff was found in a storage house near the front of the farm so they could be taken out to the fence without much hassle.
Over those three days the group started to put in the barbed wire all along the fence while also using some left over metal wire to create noise traps through the forest on either side of the farm. During the mornings Joshua and the other three of his tight nit group that were on the farm would help out in settling the defenses of the area while in the afternoons they would meet up with Madalyn and go grind more creatures for levels on the edge of town. They went out of their way to kill any of the zombies they found wandering outside the haze on their route between the farm and town. Joshua would always make sure to let one of the three ladies get the kill so they wouldn't end up wasting the experience.
Over the three days all three women of the group were able to level up one more time putting them all at level five, but it was rather discouraging to see how much harder it was becoming to grind levels. It took a thousand zombies for them all to reach level five so it would take at least ten thousand to reach the next level if the pattern continued. The pace of grinding would definitely start to slow to a crawl, but Joshua had a feeling that there was no way that whatever was testing humanity wanted them to spend years grinding levels on millions of zombies only to not have a chance in a fight against the boss. He also doubted they had the time to wait so long, if zombies from cities started flooding out and killing people in more rural areas then the chances of what's left of the human race on earth surviving would become slim.
This morning Joshua had gone on a little jog around the perimeter to make sure the barbed wire wasn't messed with along with checking the traps on the edge of the forest. When he returned he could see people starting to work on digging the ditches in intervals around the fence. There were two layers to the simple design with the pits alternating between being further up and further back. There were post with fence planks nailed around them to make them even thicker feeling up the gaps between the ditches. Each post was wrapped in barb wire to make it even more challenging for anything to get by or around the ditches. Joshua was planning to spray the ditches with water to make them slippery and muddy if it didn't rain soon, but he would wait until they finished digging them all first.
After giving a nod or simple wave to anyone who had given him greetings he found his way back into the mansion to grab a quick bite to eat. There was still some left over breakfast with his name on it, so he filled up a plate and sat down at the dining table across from Nathan. At first he was minding his own business while trying to fill his stomach, but then he took notice of what the kid was up to. Nathan had a laptop out in front of him as he typed away at the keyboard and clicked away at his mouse.
"What are you up to?" Joshua asked bringing Nathan out of his trance.
"Oh, hi Josh didn't see you show up." Nathan said as he almost jumped in surprise at the question. Joshua gave him an odd look as if to say how could you not have noticed me for so long. "Well I'm kind of trying to find any source of information online. You see ever since we've been at the mansion I've been using this laptop in the mornings or at night in an attempt to see when the internet would start working again. I just thought if someone or some power out there got out a video or a radio signal or something going we should be aware of it."
"Any luck up till now?" Joshua said as he took another bite of his toast.
"Nope not so far, every morning all I can find is either no signal or old outdated content. Maybe whatever is going on has taken down the…" Nathan started to say before a clattering sound came from the screen on his laptop followed by what sounded like the testing on a microphone. Both Joshua and Nathan turned their attention back towards the laptop with Joshua putting down his food and coming over to Nathan's side of the table get a good look at the screen.
At first there was nothing but static and grey screen until after a few minutes an image of an empty chair with a desk in front of it could be seen. The room in the background looked rather fancy and old in design. There were two large bookshelves on either side of a window behind the chair and just at the top of the screen you could make out the tip of a well-furnished chandelier. From what was outside of the window you could tell that this was taking place in a more rural area as there were no other buildings in sight and only open greenery.
"Do you think you can hook this up to the television in the den? We can get a better view of what's going on there. I'll go spread the word in the meantime." Joshua said and got a nod in reply. He hurried out of the room leaving his poor breakfast behind as he rushed out to let people know to meet up in the den for something important. Everyone knew it must have been something big if Joshua was the one going around telling people to gather up. Even Jacob and his two accomplices decided to come along without putting on airs.
After a few minutes of people shuffling into the room everyone had arrived and were all paying attention to the TV after everything was hooked up. It was the same as before Joshua had left with the empty chair in the room, but now you could see a chat box in the bottom left of the screen. There were names flying by at an extremely fast rate signifying how many people were watching the broadcast. Among them you could see people asking for others trying to see if their family were alive or still here at all. On some occasions they would get responses but most of the time they were unanswered and swept away in the tide of messages.
Occasionally you would see messages asking for help. People were starting to worry if their food supplies would last through the event while others were in more immediate danger as they talked about seeing zombies in the area. There was even one comment Joshua noticed that was someone sending a SOS and saying that he had been on the top floors of a high-rise building doing anything he could do to stay out of the mist. All of these messages were a sign of the terrible state people were starting to get in and knowing it had only been a few days Joshua was starting to worry about how long people could last.
It took another ten minutes before anything changed, but soon a woman could be seen walking quickly into frame and taking a seat in the chair. She was probably in her late thirties and had the looks of someone who had been in the news world for quite some time. She wore a professional business suit and looked rather exhausted, her long brown hair was tied to the side and fell over her shoulder neatly. For a moment she was looking at something past the camera and was mouthing words to someone. After a few moments to collect herself, sound could suddenly be heard from the broadcast as she went into a speech.
"Good morning everyone, I'm Sarah Maclin and I'm here today to get as much news out there for everyone that can still get a signal." The woman said as she kept a calm and poised presence under the circumstances. Joshua started to wonder if she was using some ability she gained to help get the broadcast out there in some way. If that were the case then even if she could talk she wouldn't be able to tell people about what all women were told before the first phase started. "I'm sorry to say this isn't some professional government broadcast where I would tell you how to proceed in these dangerous times. I and a few of my friends were able to get this broadcast going, but we're not sure how long it will last so let's get to the important details."
Everyone in the room grew tense with anticipation at finding out what could be going on outside of just their small town. Joshua also was ready to hear the news, but also smiled knowingly at the fact the woman didn't elaborate on how her and a small group of friends could get something done that all the governments around the world couldn't.
"Ever since four days ago many people have disappeared and cities, towns, and other areas with high traffic of lives have been invaded by a purple miasma. This miasma brings with it creatures that infect us when bitten so if possible try to stay out of these areas and move towards more rural places. Sadly the miasma is spreading, but luckily at an extremely slow pace. Another problem is the fact that vehicles and most modern forms of travel don't work either inside or outside the miasma, so travel to far off places would be rather difficult." Sarah explained but took a breath before continuing.
"We have also come to know that those that are infected by these creatures eventually change into zombie like entities that are as strong and as fast as well trained humans. These zombies aren't restricted to staying in the miasma so take precaution to protect yourselves in the case that one of these undead wander towards your residence. Anybody who is living around a city or town should immediately move as far away from the area as possible. Those that are trapped in cities are encourage to either leave if possible or get into as safe of a location that you can find."
The room grew quiet as everyone waited for any signs of hope or help might come and turn the tide of this awful predicament, but Sarah's last statement would greatly dampen all of their hope.
"I'm sorry to say that the military and other forces of defense won't be able to help much in most occasions. All military equipment is useless and it is impossible to travel large distances quickly without any vehicle use at the moment. This incident is not only happening on U.S soil, but the world around and there is currently no explanation for what has caused it. I hope I was able to enlighten you all on to what has been happening of late. I would recommend saving up on food and other essentials until anything new develops. We will be leaving this station on for as long as possible and will have other broadcast if any new information becomes available. You are welcomed to use the chat to communicate with each other. I wish everyone a safe day." Sarah stood up and bowed her head before once again walking off camera. Soon the image went blank and all that was left on the site was a furiously cycling chat box.
The room was extremely quiet as everyone let the situation sink in. Before things could get to bad Joshua stood up from his seat in front of the laptop with Nathan and looked towards everyone. "Now we know for sure it's not just us in this hell hole. I suggest we get those ditches done as soon as possible before finding other ways to improve our defenses. From now on whenever someone goes scouting for more supplies they are to go in a group that contains at least a combination of two of the firefighters and police officers. If you run into a wondering zombie make sure to kill it or lead it away, but for the love of all that's holy don't you dare bring that thing here. Understood?"
"Yes!" He got a ringing response as everyone knew how bad that could turn out.
"Now let's get back to finishing those ditches. We've got a lot of work ahead of us." Joshua said before being the first one out the door to grab a shovel.