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57 The Strange Event in the Basement Parking

 8:56 PM - City Mall, Bacoor, Front Mall Underpass, Basement Parking Entrance

1st Lt. Rafael Perez and his men were getting ready to eliminate any approaching threats as the soldiers moved into formation.

The two trucks that transported the survivors were put in the center of the formation while the other vehicles were used as barricade blocking the two available entrances into the underpass.

Back on the way here, Rafael and his men were surprised by the sounds of fireworks that the lieutenant had to call his sister to explain what was happening that time. Angeline properly explained what was happening and he felt grateful as he and his men would face lesser danger to get into the mall.

They encountered a very low number infected when they arrived and those numbers were nothing to them as trained soldiers. They did not even opened fire and just dealt with the threat on close quarters.

Then, they saw the closed parking entrance and the barricaded employee entrance. The soldiers had the notion of blasting the metal door but the amount of explosives they had left would not even open a hole big enough for the vehicles to enter and might possibly break the mechanisms of the gate. The explosion would also attract the infected to this place.

Abandoning the vehicles outside was also a no go as they would need the vehicles in order to evacuate if something unexpected to arise.

Before his sister ended the call, Rafael actually wanted to stop her from doing something dangerous but he did not in the end. With her stubborn personality, she would still go even if he told her not to.

The lieutenant looked towards the entrance of the underpass. He could still hear the continuous sounds of fireworks keeping the infected at bay.

***

Mark and Ange were currently rushing down the stairwell in the west wing.

They dropped off Mei with Paula and the still sleeping Abbygale. Paula also wanted to come but as they needed to move fast, only Mark and Ange were suitable for the job.

"Just why is the parking entrance closed?!"

Ange felt angry and were complaining as they jogged down the stairs.

"Who knows? I expected it to be open too if you ask me. The employee entrance was barricaded and the entrance was closed. It's likely that there are people that hide in there."

Mark replied looked at Ange and continued.

"Just which dumb people would stay in dark place like that?"

"I can't be called dumb in this place I think."

"Why?"

"The basement parking also serves as a cargo bay and had direct access to the warehouse of the mall so if they managed to secure the parking area and the warehouse, then they will be able to live for a long time without worry for food and water, though I did not expect that there would be anyone who can do it since the outbreak came so sudden."

Ange looked at Mark.

"Why do you know a lot about this mall?"

"Remember my job hopping? I also worked here before. The same work as Fernan and James. I also remember Uncle Bernard a little since that old man was already working here that time I was hired though I don't think he remembers me since I looked younger that time and we never really interacted during the six months I worked here."

"That's..."

Ange was surprised.

Mark and Ange arrived at the lowest level of the stairwell and stood in front of the door. Mark then frowned while Ange reached for the door but it would not budge even an inch.

"It's no use it's barred from the outside. Let's hurry back up and use the elevator."

Mark who was frowning said.

"Is something wrong? You're voice sounds serious."

"Remember my ability?"

"Yeah, Paula said that you found Abbygale and those two using that right?"

Mark nodded.

"There's a problem, I don't detect any human nearby inside the parking area."

"What?!"

"Anyways, let's go. We just need to be extra careful."

The two hurried back towards the third floor and waited for the elevator.

***

TING!

The elevator opened bringing Mark and Ange into the basement parking. The eerie feeling assaulted them.

The basement parking was actually the largest parking space in the vicinity of the mall. The parking area occupied the space under the Central Area, West Wing and the East Wing of the Mall while the area under the South Wing serves as the main warehouse.

There were two entrances that led to this area. One was at the underpass under the City Mall's main door while the other was a direct access to the warehouse on at the western side of the south wing. The south wing entrance though was closed most of the time since it was only used as exit to cargo vehicles that already finished unloading their cargo.

In order to open the main entrance, they needed to locate the guard post that had access to controls of the main entrance.

Mark and Ange carefully looked around. There were neither zombies nor humans in sight.

'If I knew that it would be like this, then I didn't have to lead her brother here.'

Mark thought.

He expected that this place would be brimming with zombies even if the numbers were fewer than most parts of the mall. Though it would be fewer, he was sure that they would still not be able to handle that number with just a few people with very low fire power. And thus, he decided to get some 'helping hands'.

Eerie.

That was Mark thought as he and Ange hurried across the parking area under the west wing. The place was silent. Though Mark was fond of silent and peaceful places, the silence in this area gave him a different vibe.

There were a lot of cars parked along with several delivery vans but there was not a single soul in sight.

When they were near the Central Area, they stopped in shock.

The area was brimming...

With dead bodies.

Not bodies of dead zombies but humans. Decapitated, mutilated and dismembered bodies of humans littered the floor. It may be children, men, women and elderly, no one was spared. Splashes of blood, bullet holes on the floor, pools of blood and scratches on the concrete made the scene too strange.

Ange could not help bat gasp.

Mark approached one of the bodies and picked up a few things. The body he approached was a man wearing a white security guard uniform. His eyes were still open and the horror in his face was visible. The guard's upper body was cleanly separated from the lower part. Mark picked up a revolver in his hand and took the bloody belt bag that contained bullets from his waist.

He then approached Ange who was still shocked at the scene and held the gun and belt bag he just took towards her.

"You can use this right?"

Ange snapped out of her stupor when he heard Mark's voice. She nodded.

"Then take it and be on guard."

Mark's voice was really stern as he continued.

"You should only focus on letting your brother and his men inside. Don't think about anything else."

"What's wrong?"

Mark looked towards the central area.

"Nothing, we just might die if you get distracted about other things."

Ange looked at him wide eyed. Mark then looked at Ange.

"Promise that you won't look back no matter what and concentrate of getting them inside? I know I make fun of you every possible time but not now alright?"

Ange noticed that things were really serious since Mark was acting like this.

Actually, by the time they saw the bodies, Mark's back started to get drenched in cold sweat.

When he found Abbygale, she had faint and very calm emotional fluctuations that he did not notice her immediately. But right now, he was detecting the complete opposite. He was detecting an overpowering, wild and highly erratic emotional fluctuation that could even make an average Empath kneel down due to a head splitting headache.

He then looked towards ceiling of the central area murmured under his breath that even made Ange dumbfounded.

"It smells like a boss fight."