(This is before the virus is cured, and the infected are still the main danger. They still haven't seen any people other than the infected. It gives a little background on the two soon-to-be students of the high school. Don't worry, we'll get to the main conflict soon!)

The sun was just peeking over the tops of the skyscrapers, spilling New York city with a orange light. He had one hour left. One hour to find his daughter, and get back to safety. He pushed hard on the pedal, screeching the tires of a Ford truck down an empty Main street. He sped over the maintenance ignored roads, which was now growing weeds and grass over the past five years. His sharp eyes scanned the streets expertly, one hand on the steering wheel, one hand on his rifle next to him. Max, a black and brown cow dog sat in the back, looking out the window as well, had his ears perked up, waiting for something to happen. He knew where he had to look. The pier. She was always there, waiting for anything to come over the radio other then the fuzz and mess of sounds.

He moved his eyes again to the sun… he was losing precious time. But he was almost there. Just up ahead was the pier. He slammed on the breaks and gripped his gun. He saw the desk at the far end just ahead. Max jumped out and sniffed. He didn't seemed alarmed, so the man moved forward, gun in front.

"Jack?" he called, his voice thin and crisp on the air. No answer… no movement. She wasn't there. Perhaps she had already gone back to the house?

"JACK!?" he called louder, just to be sure. He had not time to make mistakes, or take risks. Again there was no answer. Max looked anxiously at the man, and finally the man 'tsss' his tongue and Max instantly set to work. His nose to the ground he sniffed. All the way down to the desk with the radio. The radio was off, but it was warm from being on all day. Max gave a scruff. She was here. The man ran back to the car, Max close behind. He revved the engine and shut the door, just as Max jumped in from the window on the other side. He jumped in back and braced himself for the strong peel out. In seconds the man and the dog were back on their way to the house, going sixty on a thirty mile road. But the signs had rusted over long ago.

He set his rifle on the seat next to him, and pulled out his cell phone. He had to keep trying. He dialed his daughters number again. It rang six terrible times, before coming to her voice mail.

Hey Dad I'm sorry I didn't answer. Please don't freak out. I'll be back by night fall don't worry. Love you. And then he hung up. He found his way through the streets, to his house. It wasn't that hard to pick out amongst all the other, very similar houses. The only big difference was he had two lines of cars surrounding it, all lined with bombs, trick wires all over the lawn, and a ten foot fence topped with barb wire adding another three feet. Ya… not much different at all.

He jumped out of the car and jogged up the walkway. He twisted the knob and flung the door open, his heart starting to ache.

"Jack?!" he yelled in the house. He stood there for a few agonizing seconds, with an empty house to answer him. "Max!" Max started sniffed. All up the walkway, the front steps, the door, the entry way… and found nothing. He flipped open the cell phone again and pressed send twice, starting to get dangerously nervous. He put it to his ear. One ring… two ring... he looked at the sun. The gloom began to creep up on the city, filling it with shadows that held a danger he did not want to think about. Three ring… four ring… he looked at Max who was still trying to find a scent of Jack. He had to admit the dog was well trained and a good complain to have at his side… especially in this city. Five ring… Six ring. He was about to hang up, unable to bring himself to hear Jack's calm voice when he was so panicked, when he heard the tone pick up.

"Jack! Where are you! You have less than thirty minutes to get home!" He said angrily. For a second, no one answered. He waited and listened.

"Who is this?" came an unfamiliar voice. It was slow, and unsure. The man froze. It was not his daughter's voice… far from it. Was it one of the infected? No, they had lost all ability of speech long ago. The voice knew English perfectly well, and knew the meanings of the word. And it was a practical question. It…. It was another human!

"Where's my daughter?" the man asked. It was his first priority. And he had his priority's straight enough.

"She's alive." He said.

"Are you trying to say otherwise?" the dad demanded.

"No… it's… I've haven't seen a human… for a long time…" the voice said, 'You're… you're not one of … of them are you?"

"I'm a survivor… I'm immune. And I'd like my daughter back in less than twenty five minutes." His voice was cold… icy. He did not get a reply for a long time. Every second that went by, was one more second the infected crept closer.

"Where do you live?" the voice seem to snap out of a trance and focus.

"5061 Pine St. Can't miss it." The dad said.

"I'll get her home." Before the dad could ask any further questions, he hung up. The dad looked up at the sun. He had no choice now. He called Max inside and started to close up. He started at the windows and doors on the bottom floor. He closed heavy metal doors six inches thick over the already barred windows. He tucked an installation between the slighted gaps that even paper would have a hard time getting through, shutting off any light that was left from outside. He clamped the metal doors shut with heavy bars and moved his way through the house. When the down stairs was finished, he quickly started the upstairs. He shut them all up with ease, closing the house in a complete darkness. An uneasy one… but safe. And there was a huge difference between the two. He flipped on a few lights, knowing none of It would reach outside, and stood by the front door. He had not latched it yet. The metal casing was still ajar. The dad set a chair in the hallway, facing the front door, a newly loaded automatic in his lap, a gallon tank of bleach on his right, and Max lying on the floor on his left. He did not have to wait long until Max perked his ears up. He did not growl, as he would always if he smelt something was wrong… but he did not wag his tail either, as he did with Jack. He gripped his gun, finger tight on the trigger, the barrel aimed at the door. Max rose to all fours, head down, eyes on the door knob. It twisted slowly, and the door opened. It had become darker then the dad ever remembered it being outside. He only saw a black mess against the night sky. Max, twitched, and the dad stood up, now aiming his gun. Then whatever was in the door way stepped into the light of the house. It was a boy, about the same age as Jack. He wore a black zip up hoody with a skull printed on the front, and jeans ripped at the knees. The hood of his jacket was over his head, his face hidden. In his arms was Jack, limp and head to the side. The dad forgot all reasons of safety, lowered his gun and ran for his daughter.

"Jack!" He took her off of the boys shoulder, "Jack!"

"She's ok. I think she's just a bit scrapped up from a bike crash." The boy said. Carefully Jack was set on the floor. The dad threw the gun to the side, and pulled a bottle out of his pocket. He snapped it open and dumped the contents on the floor. He picked up one of the white pills and tucked it under Jack's tongue. In a few moments Jack sputtered and her bright blue eyes flashed open. The dad scooped her up in a shaky hug, a tear spewing from the corner of his eye. Jack fell unconscious again, but her dad knew it was going to be ok.

"What… was that you gave her?" the boy asked.

"Her medicine. She was a hour late taking it… but after some rest she'll be fine." He said. He picked her up and brought her to the living room. He set her down on the couch, and picked up a bottle of water. He gave her s sip, before finished shutting up the house. Hopefully she would wake up soon.