Description: Black ops agent Chad Halverson of the CIA’s National Clandestine Service escapes plague-and zombie-ravaged Santa Monica with dress designer Victoria Brady and sets sail up the smoldering California coast.
Along the way, Halverson and Brady rescue the idealistic Dr. Parnell, the UCSB coed Brittany Pine who is in a state of shock induced by the loss of her boyfriend to the walking dead, and the cynical reporter Blake Reno.
Seeking sanctuary from the walking dead in Alcatraz prison, Halverson and his band discover that all is not as it seems on the island haven at the Rock. In fact, they may have more to fear than the walking dead in the person of Alcatraz’s reigning “Chosen One,” the charismatic proponent of law and order Jefferson Bascomb, who believes zombies have the right to a fair trial.
Here’s an excerpt:
Copyright © 2012 by Bryan Cassiday
All rights reserved. This excerpt is protected by copyright.
Zombies ten thousand strong massed along the Santa Monica shore, plodding through the sand, lumbering into each other in their unstoppable death march toward the onrushing surf that crashed and boiled at their feet.
“They’ll do anything to get to us,” said Halverson at the wheel of a twenty-foot sailboat plying the waters some fifty yards away from the littoral.
“They can’t walk on water,” said Victoria, her blonde hair blowing in the gusting wind that billowed the sails.
Eight years younger than Halverson’s thirty-six years and a mother as well, the couturiere looked like a teenager with her slim figure.
She did a double take. “Can they?” she added.
Halverson watched three of the walking dead as they traipsed into the churning surf, bound and determined to reach him and Victoria aboard the sailboat. The waves pounded the ghouls back.
The creatures stumbled in the water and collapsed to their knees, but got up again in their headstrong, albeit mindless, assault and headed toward the sailboat, defying the waves and trudging through the water till their entire decrepit bodies were submerged and only their heads remained visible to the naked eye.
nd then their heads were submerged as well.
“Doesn’t look that way,” said Halverson. “They may be the next phase in the evolution of man, but they don’t fare too well in the water.”
“You really think we’re evolving into those things?” Victoria shuddered at the thought.
Halverson scanned the beaches swarming with ghouls. “They do seem to be taking over at man’s expense.”
Victoria shook her head in bafflement. “What the hell happened?” she muttered.
Halverson knew what had happened, but it was classified intel. As a black ops agent for the CIA’s National Clandestine Service he could not relate the eyes-only information to a civilian like Victoria. Though at this point, Halverson wondered how much of the CIA was left intact.
He heard a rumbling overhead, tilted his head up, and gazed into the sky.
It was becoming overcast. Too, smoke hazed the sky. A smattering of clouds scudded across the canopy of diminishing cerulean. Flying among the clouds was a drone – an MQ-1 Predator drone, to be exact, armed with hundred-pound laser-guided Hellfire missiles.
It was all the proof Halverson needed that some part of the federal government still existed.
Victoria followed his gaze. “How many of those drones are there?”
“Is that one gonna shoot at us, too?”
Halverson’s eyes followed the drone. “It may just be doing recce.”
He doubted the drone would fire at them as long as it couldn’t make a positive ID of him. Convinced the government had him in its crosshairs, he nevertheless believed the drone could not ID him at this moment. There was still enough smoke roiling in the sky from the burning ruins of the city to obscure the vision of the drone’s cameras.
“Like that other one that fired a missile at us at the bank?” she said sarcastically.
“That drone was keying on the GPS signal emitted by my satphone, which I threw away.”
“Why would it fire at us?”
“I don’t know,” he lied.
The less he told her about his job, the better off she would be in terms of life expectancy, he figured. The eyes-only intel he carried around in his head concerning the government’s involvement with the creation of the plague would only serve to get her name added to the same hit list his name was already on if he imparted the knowledge to her.
As far as he knew, the government was seeking to whack him alone. That would change if Victoria knew as much as he did about them, specifically about the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam and about the superbug the scientists there, by design and aided by American funding, had created in a lab where they mutated H5N1 into the so-called zombie virus that was well on its way to wiping out the human race.
About The Author: Bryan Cassiday is the author of the Chad Halverson zombie apocalypse book series Zombie Maelstrom, Zombie Necropolis, and Sanctuary In Steel. Helter Skelter and Blood Moon: Thrillers And Tales Of Terror are his collections of horror short stories. He also wrote the CIA spy thrillers The Anaconda Complex, The Kill Option, and Fete Of Death.
He graduated from UCLA with a BA degree in English and took courses at the USC Graduate School of Cinema – Film. He lives in Southern California.
Check this one out on Amazon: Sanctuary in Steel