40 Chapter 39: First Conflict with the Big Bad Boss Final
Joshua found himself being thrown through another sheetrock wall as he crashed into a now broken table. For the past five minutes since the mental link had been broken, Joshua was busy getting pummeled in all sorts of ways. The cause of all of his pain was the blond haired woman in front of him. Unlike all the other zombies he had seen to this point the only thing that had made her look any different from the average person was her glowing purple eyes and her slightly paler skin tone. She didn't have tendrils all over her body and she didn't act like a rampaging idiot. It wasn't that she was smart or anything, she was still fighting like a bull in a china shop, but she had not once tried to bite him. In fact she seemed to be taken pleasure in beating the crap out of Joshua.
This woman was the same one he had seen die back at the police station and she acted almost exactly the same even now. Her attacks were wild haymakers and random kicks or tackles, but her ability was a great problem for Joshua. Even with all of his technique and skill he was having a lot of trouble handling her raw power. He had already had to avoid a car that was thrown his way let alone a few punches. Whenever she lunged at him she was able to move so fast he was barely able to react at all. He would have to use his body and positioning to take the brunt of the force without getting to hurt in the process of the blow, but that often sent him soaring off his feet and crashing into buildings.
Joshua stood up and looked towards the woman. Even though he took another surprise hit this time he was able to slash her arm beforehand, but now he was not pleased with the result. The zombie noticed where he was looking and lifted her arm to watch the deep slash wound slowly heal and close itself up. "Last time I checked zombies don't do that." Joshua said cursing under his breath. The zombie smirked before once again running towards him with every intention of breaking his bones.
It didn't take long for Joshua to come flying out another window out into the street. He picked his self-up and pulled out his sledge hammer after getting annoyed at the fact that he was being tossed around so much. The zombie girl came blasting through the window preparing to attack him again when he swung the sledge hammer as hard as he could towards her face. That's when he felt all of momentum come to a halt as he watched the girl easily grab the sledge hammer with one hand before shoving it away and kicking him back inside another building.
This time Joshua wasn't as prepared to take the hit and he felt it knock all the air out of his lungs. He coughed up a bit of spit and quickly sucked in some air before going into a short coughing fit. He was lucky he moved back a bit in time before the kick landed, otherwise he might have some fractured ribs and if worse came to worse a punctured lung. Deciding that frontal confrontation was getting him nowhere Joshua quickly moved on to plan two and pulled out one of the canisters that Madalyn had given him. This one was different from the others as it only had one hole at the top and would spray the gas in one direction when twisted open. The gas on the inside was far more condensed and not nearly as easy to catch fire as the other version. That's why Madalyn decided to give this one to Joshua so he could use it in close combat in a pinch.
The zombie girl soon came wondering into the new building as she kicked some tables out of the way sending them crashing into the shelves of the store. The interaction caused several pieces of glassware to shatter all over the floor, but neither of them seemed to care. The zombie girl was too focused on beating down her prey while Joshua no longer cared about making too much noise because the only creature he had seen in his surroundings was the one in front of him. Joshua rose to his feet and held the poison in one hand while holding a heavy hammer in the other. He had already put the sledge hammer back up sense it was clearly to slow, and if that was the case for the sledge hammer then the axe would probably fall into the same category for now.
The zombie charged across the room knocking everything in her path out of the way as she quickly approached Joshua. When she got close Joshua Jumped back and twisted to top of the poison container while aiming towards her. A thick cloud of poison vapor smashed into the zombie's body slowing it down and sending it into a coughing fit. Joshua quickly rushed outside so that the gas wouldn't start to get to him as well. He waited patiently as the zombie slowly stumbled its way out of the building after him. Its cocky expression was now replaced with annoyance as it once again charged towards Joshua, though this time it was clearly moving at a slower pace.
Before Joshua was having so much trouble with it because it moved at such a fast speed that his eyes could barely keep up with it. He was only able to react by moving and blocking at the last second. He was rarely ever able to counter attack, but now that was all about to change. Now with the zombie moving far slower at a speed that was closer to his own he was able to easily use his martial skills to his benefit. Whenever the zombie's wild swings would approach him he would easily redirect them and get in a quick hit in response. He would either smash its knees or elbows with his hammer trying to hamper her or cut and stab at the zombie's blind spots.
At first this seemed to be working as the zombie was struggling to keep pace and constantly glaring at him in rage, but Joshua noticed how little damage he was doing. She would simply twist her arms or legs back in place if he destroyed her knees or elbows, her body healing the damage within seconds. When it came to the cuts they healed even faster as the purple gas in her surroundings would funnel into the wounds and instantly heal them. The entire time they were fighting she would ignore almost all of his attacks and continue to retaliate. The only times she would dodge or block were when he aimed for her head. Each time she would shove or kick him away if he even came close to landing a blow there.
The fight continued to drag on as Joshua was slowly being pressured towards the edge of town sense his attacks were being shrugged off. He didn't want to end up bringing this monster with him when he met the others because he didn't know what their current situation was like at the moment. He was running out of buildings to use for cover or distractions and he was starting to get tired at the long fight. All the blows he had taken up to this point were beginning to ache furiously. Sense he was running out of ideas he decided to go with the old burning it alive method that had worked so many times before up to this point.
Joshua led the woman towards a building that had clearly already been ransacked with all of its broken windows. The girl didn't care and furiously chased him inside. While Joshua was running he put on a gas mask and took out his last container of the easily flammable poison gas. He quickly twisted the top and tossed the container to the ground allowing the gas to fill up the room. Joshua rushed to get ahead of the spreading gas and made it next to a broken window at the back of the store before turning around and pulling out his lighter. "Try and survive this one bastard."
Joshua smiled under the mask before sparking the lighter and catching the gas directly in front of him on fire. He covered his face as the flame spread in front of him and the force of the explosion was strong enough to send him flying out of the window onto the street outside. He rolled on to his stomach before pushing himself off the ground. He had ran out of arrows so he wasn't able to light the fire from a distance. His face was singed a bit darker than usual and he had to pat some of the fire from off of his beard, luckily his hair didn't catch on fire as well. Joshua watched the flames engulf the small building for a moment before he tensed up as he could hear steps coming from inside.
Soon Joshua could once again see the figure of the zombie girl stepping out of the window and onto the street in front of him. Her hair was still on fire and a lot of her clothes were as well. Her skin was marred black and covered in blisters and third degree burns and in some cases even worse. Her face was so badly burnt that you could see parts of her skull in some spots with her nose being completely burned away along with her lips and eyes. That's when she came to a stop in front of him as she seemed to be teasing him. She let Joshua watch as all of her injuries quickly healed in front of his eyes. The healing was completed when Joshua could make out the smirk on her now regrown lips.
'Well hell, I can imagine either Henry or Nathan complaining about censorship if they saw this.' Joshua thought as he watched the purple haze seem to reform the clothes on her skin at a rapid pace. Within fifteen seconds she was back to her perfect self and charging towards Joshua once again. Sighing Joshua began to avoid her attacks as he was being pressured towards the edge of the haze. He didn't know why the zombie seemed to be so focused on that, but based on what he had seen from the boss monster so far he guessed that it was another way for it to mess with its prey. Knowing that would probably be a bad idea Joshua decided to make his final attempt at killing the zombie now, and he had only one chance at this.
Joshua kept his gas mask on as he pulled out another container of the thicker gas that had slowed the zombie down in the first place. The effect was wearing off quickly so he had to make his move fast. The zombie girl seemed to chuckle as she glanced at the container. Knowing what the stuff could do she simply charged at him once again in a show of complete confidence. This time Joshua didn't twist the top but instead picked up a shirt from off the ground near a destroyed shop and wrapped one of his hands in it. He then grabbed the poison container and avoided the zombie's wild swing before slamming it as hard as he could into her face. The blow sent the zombie tumbling back as she tried to rub the mostly liquid poison off of her face.
Joshua's hand was numb even though he had covered it before hand, but he could still move it well enough. He quickly grabbed the axe off of his back before hacking towards the girl as harshly as possible. The blow was headed for her head so she lifted one of arms up to defend against one of the few things that might kill her. Joshua smiled as he saw this and quickly changed the angle slightly in mid swing as he slashed the axe into her unguarded shoulder. The blow sunk in deeply nearly cutting off her entire right arm, but her thicker muscles and bones stopped its progress just short.
She looked on in anger at the man who had managed to deeply wound her before swinging at him again. This time Joshua dodged around to her side where her broken arm was unable to react before pulling out his sledge hammer and swinging at the spot where the axe was stuck. The zombie was too far out of position to react so the blow struck true and sent the axe straight through the rest of her shoulder. The only sound that could be heard in the area was the clattering of the axe hitting the ground alongside the thump of her arm landing next to it. She let out an enraged scream of pain before once again throwing herself at Joshua.
Now that his opponent was down one arm Joshua was easily able to avoid her attacks and make his move. He avoided her swing before smashing his sledge hammer into her knee putting her off balance and causing her to fall to one knee. He then quickly twisted around her and kicked her forward before picking up his combat knife with two hands and slamming it harshly into the back of her skull. He watched her body lay limply for a moment to see if she had survived, but soon her corpse broke down into several purple particles that floated into the air before once again rejoining the haze. The only thing left behind was his knife that had fallen to the ground in her absence.
Joshua let out a sigh as he took off his gas mask before picking up all his dropped gear. He quickly rushed towards the edge of the purple haze so he could check up on the others. Just as he was about to exit he heard a popping sound and tensed up at the feeling of death coming from behind him. Joshua quickly turned around and jumped backwards while using his arms to protect himself. He was lucky he did so otherwise the large hand that was about to snatch him up would have been successful. Instead one of the finger tips had given him a glancing blow that sent him flying out of the haze and tumbling on to the road outside.
Joshua gritted his teeth as he stood up and shook off the pain he had gotten from blocking the blow. His forearms weren't broken but they would definitely be bruising up soon. He turned to look at the haze and saw the boss monster glancing down at him from within. His eyes once again squinted in delight before a deep rumbling sound once again emitted from his belly as if it was laughing. It looked at Joshua for a moment longer before turning around and slowly heading back towards its thrown of rubble. Joshua collapsed onto his backside and stared at the sky for a moment as he thought. 'How the hell are we supposed to kill that?'