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wausauloner - Thu Dec 20 2012

12:02 AM #
It's a frightening thought: Spontaneous infection along with accelerated death and reanimation. We have to disrupt this new anomaly!

12:30 AM #
My diplomatic convoy's medic has checked everybody on our team and the survivors we rescued for signs of zombie infection. Nothing, so far.

12:33 AM #
Nonetheless, I've told everyone here that I suspect this anomaly may cause death (and undeath) to those who spend time near it...

12:36 AM #
I've sent all the children and elderly we've rescued, along with an escort, to the camp we used last week. As for the rest of us...

12:39 AM #
...I've stressed the importance of disrupting this anomaly. I'm staying to fight it, and most of the rest of my team and the locals are too.

12:45 AM #
A good number of those we rescued have gone back into the mine to find more survivors. Everyone down there deserves a chance to live.

02:32 AM #
I've got 40 people here working on the problem. About half are locals, who know the mine, the trap, and the resources available to us...

02:35 AM #
The other half are from my diplomatic convoy. We have experience destroying the zombie piles that create anomalies. We're all brainstorming.

02:38 AM #
The mass of anaerobically decomposing zombie flesh is essentially an 800-feet-deep vertical pit. Fortunately, there is some good news...

02:41 AM #
...At almost every level down to the bottom, most of the passages adjacent to the pit had doors connecting to it that could be re-opened.

02:44 AM #
They were blocked to keep zombies who fell into the pit from getting out into the mine. Now, unsealing the barricades could be helpful...

02:47 AM #
We'd be able to access the decaying meat to physically disrupt the networked bodies, exposing the mush and the black tendrils within to air.

02:50 AM #
The dimensions of the pit worry me, however. It is 8x8, making it difficult to expose more than just small areas at each door to oxidation.

02:53 AM #
One idea on the table: closing off part of the mine's ventilation system and re-routing the rest to blast air into the area around the pit.

02:56 AM #
Another: reversing the pumps and pipes that keep the mine dry to flood the the pit, blasting the anaerobic goo out with high pressure.

02:59 AM #
I'm afraid that would only work temporarily, disrupting the anomaly now, only to see it reform when the bodies collect deeper in the mine.

03:02 AM #
Explosives are back under consideration. We can't blow the top. It would just seal the hole. But smaller blasts starting at the bottom?

03:05 AM #
The timing would have to be right... It could work, & the explosions wouldn't have to be very big if we did it correctly. Best idea, so far.

03:08 AM #
There's an open pit mine nearby that could supply plenty of Primacord and explosives. Some locals will retrieve what we need at first light.

03:11 AM #
I'm going back into the mine with some locals who think we can chart a way around to the pit-side of the mine, avoiding most of the zombies.

03:14 AM #
We'll secure as much of the route as we can and find the best way to reach the pit from as many levels as possible. I'll tweet our progress.

03:17 AM #
To the watchers in the DARPA monitoring station: please relay my tweets to the HAM guys atop Rib so they can read them to listeners here.

03:20 AM #
It's a one-way roundabout com system that will reveal our presence to any predatory survivor listening, but we have no choice. #zompocalypse

05:24 AM #
We're near the deepest part of the mine and working our way east to the pit trap. No lights this deep. Thankfully, no zombies, either.

05:27 AM #
We passed the rescue team a little while ago. They found about 50 more people and many more recently turned undead. Some are on their way up

05:31 AM #
After I explained what we now suspect of the anomaly and what we are going to do about it, some have joined us in our recon mission.

05:33 AM #
As for the spontaneous zombie infections: I've confirmed 3 more cases, one among the locals who came back down, two among the recently found

05:36 AM #
They know their fate and are insisting on taking all the risks as we travel through dangerous areas of the mine. Brave, brave people.

07:03 AM #
We're nearing the pit. No lights here, though we don't need our flashlights: There's a faint green glow in the air, like luminescent fog.

07:06 AM #
It looks uncannily like what I saw in Rib Mountain back in 2009, near where the Wausau Anomaly later appeared. It's pretty far along.

07:09 AM #
I'd say we're a day--maybe two at most--from the level of energy we witnessed the day the zombie outbreak hit full bloom. #zompocalypse

07:12 AM #
Tho...I can't shake this feeling that something is different this time around. Maybe it's because I'm on the other side of a forming anomaly

09:11 AM #
We've reached a door at the bottom of the pit trap. The green glow is brighter. There's a viscous slime draining out from behind the frame.

09:14 AM #
There are no animate zombies down this deep. Behind the door: a gelatinous mush of decomposing flesh feeding a network of infected brains.

09:17 AM #
If we unbolt and open that door, some of the congealed mass will slough off into the passage, exposing the black tendrils within to air...

09:20 AM #
They'll instantly oxidize, damaging the network of zombie brains that is generating the anomaly. Probably not enough. #zompocalypse

09:23 AM #
Opening the door would also kill us. Down here in the mine, the methane and other gasses from all that anaerobic decomp would be suffocating

09:26 AM #
For now, we go up, looking for a way to attack more of this column of dead flesh in a way that won't kill us before we complete the job.

10:02 AM #
We're up a few levels. One of our people just fell over dead. Another local. We backed away from him when we got a light on his face...

10:05 AM #
He was already reanimating...He didn't see us when he got up. He just walked over to the wall nearest the shaft full of the dead...

10:08 AM #
At the sealed door between us and the collected dead, he leaned his head against it and stood there like a kid in a corner on a time-out.

11:10 AM #
We've found a very old ventilation shaft, blocked somewhere above. If we can clear it, we can use it to lower explosives. #zompocalypse

11:41 AM #
The infrastructure in this part of the mine is rusting, falling apart. A local said these depths were flooded until they got the pumps going

12:31 PM #
We found a level where the door failed. Some zombies spilled out of the pit trap. We've dealt with them and some stuck in the doorway itself

12:34 PM #
The entire doorway was packed with the dead, stuck fast by the weight of more zombies above. A couple did pull themselves out to attack us.

12:37 PM #
One pulled out just its top half, leaving its legs, partially consumed by the anaerobic decomp, stuck in the pile. #zompocalypse #zombies

12:40 PM #
We spiked the rest of the exposed heads, then retreated, gagging. The "crust" of animate dead had moved enough to leak goo and gasses out.

01:20 PM #
As we climb levels of the mine, we are starting to run into more undead in the tunnels around the vertical shaft that became the pit trap.

01:23 PM #
Every zombie we find goes down quickly. We've lost another man and people are getting jittery. I can't blame anyone for wanting out of here.

03:02 PM #
We've just had two very large melees against large numbers of zombies. We must be getting close to the top of the pile.

03:05 PM #
At each level, we take care of any blockage in the old ventilation shaft we found and secure our route, when possible. #zombie #apocalypse

04:10 PM #
We've reached the level of the pit where the pile of undead ends. It is in the middle of a large, semi-open gallery that was heavily mined.

04:13 PM #
We retreated one level below to re-route around it...there are too many zombies wandering around behind every remaining pillar of rock.

04:16 PM #
Before we did, we could clearly see where pressure from the zombies falling from above collapsed part of the barricade surrounding the shaft

04:19 PM #
There was open space inside...all the zombies that fell into the trap once it reached this high spilled out into the gallery. #zompocalypse

04:22 PM #
One of the locals knows this part of the mine and says we can get around the horde and up to the headframe above. It will save us many hours

05:43 PM #
Out of the mine! It was disgusting, climbing out of that last part of the trap, but we made it. The medic is checking everyone out. #zombies

06:11 PM #
The medic gave me his report during my exam. 1 in 4 of the locals with me show signs of contracting the zombie plague without being bitten.

06:14 PM #
Some of the other Ishpeming locals also show signs of the infection. Their proximity to the anomaly while in the mine seems to be a factor.

06:17 PM #
This terrible information explains why we found few survivors underground the further east we went. As for those of us from Wausau...

06:20 PM #
...Not one among us has the active form of the "biteless" zombie infection. Though all of us, say his records, carry the latent Z-factor.

06:23 PM #
He thinks the Z-factor in our blood, caused by exposure to The Anomaly in Wausau, has given us some resistance to what is happening here.

06:26 PM #
No time to wonder about it right now. We have to go back into the mine & clear out that gallery. It will take every one of us who can fight.

06:29 PM #
Our new friends, even those already sick, are pushing to get started. They know they're running out of time & we're running out of manpower.

06:32 PM #
Before we begin, I want to warn anyone in any world my tweets reach--especially if you're near Ishpeming: Please, mind your dead! #zombies

10:01 PM #
The gallery is secure. We lost...too many. #zombie #zombies #zompocalypse #apocalypse

10:04 PM #
Clearing the gallery level of the mine gives us access to a century-old ventilation shaft running parallel to the larger, pit-trap shaft.

10:07 PM #
Those of us who survived the battle are resting, getting some water, and forcing down some food. We still have a lot to do down below.

10:10 PM #
We're going to use the tanks and rebreathers we found to safely open a sealed door every 20' or so down the shaft holding the decaying zoms.

10:13 PM #
Small explosive charges will be set directly into the anaerobically decaying mass of zombie flesh. We'll run Primacord to the bottom...

10:16 PM #
...then back up to each explosive charge in turn until we get to the top of the shaft. We'll set the Primacord off from up here...

10:19 PM #
The guys who got the Primacord from the open pit mine on the other side of Ishpeming know how to use it. They say it will take mere seconds.

10:22 PM #
The Primacord will set off the charges from the bottom of the mine to the top, hopefully not doing enough damage to collapse the mine.

10:25 PM #
The explosions will blow the decomposed flesh apart, destroying some of the networked zombie brains inside the goo and exposing more to air.

10:28 PM #
Our plan might not take out the whole pile. We hope it will destroy or scatter enough to collapse the anomaly before it forms completely.

10:31 PM #
I need to pass on what is happening around the column of dead so that, if we don't survive, others might use the knowledge we've learned.

10:34 PM #
The slow, steady pulsing of the green glow around the pit of dead flesh and the networked zombie brains within is brighter and faster.

10:37 PM #
When we got here, it was pulsing at about 1 beat every 4 seconds. It is now pulsing once per second. The rate of increase is speeding up.

10:40 PM #
Unlike the original Anomaly down in Wausau, this one is not coalescing to a point. Instead, the luminous "fog" seems to be spreading outward

10:43 PM #
It is now lighting up the night to a radius of about 120 yards above ground, probably the same below. The "fog" plays tricks on the eyes.

10:46 PM #
Clearly, the pulsing of the forming anomaly is building to some level of critical mass as more and more connections form in the muck.

10:49 PM #
Another matter to report: Some of the children and elderly survivors we rescued from the mine have passed at the camp outside town. #zombies

10:52 PM #
More of the ones that remained here to fight have died too. It is difficult to tell if the rate of spontaneous infection has changed...

10:55 PM #
The reason we don't know is...because our losses were so horrendous down in the mine. There are only 23 of us left. Just enough to continue.

10:58 PM #
I have to report the bravery I witnessed in the fight. It was not a careful, slow and steady fight like we preach and practice... #zombies

11:01 PM #
It was an all-out, no-holding-back assault. We started out with hand weapons, smashing the heads of zombies around the pit from behind...

11:04 PM #
The zombies, brought into a cluster around the pit by the siren song of the pulse, began to turn their attention to us...we had to use guns.

11:07 PM #
The report of all those weapons became a continuing, thunderous din. We made progress steadily until more zombies started to show up.

11:10 PM #
More and more of the dead appeared, their numbers unrelenting. Thousands of them just kept coming out of the darkness... #zombie #zombies

11:13 PM #
With over three years of hard experience, our people & Ishpeming's survivors fought well. But guns got hot. Misfires happened. Shells stuck.

11:16 PM #
We used our mobility to dodge zombies around the checkerboard of supports in the mine. Sometimes, we got cornered. #zombies #zompocalypse

11:19 PM #
When someone went down, another person took their spot on the line. I saw a woman defending the body of a lover until the moment of turning.

11:22 PM #
Knowing the dead wouldn't eat the body of her partner after undeath, she waited until that moment to spike her and retreat... #zompocalypse

11:25 PM #
I saw people fighting on with fatal wounds, finally charging into a zombie horde to give those behind them a chance to reload...

11:28 PM #
I saw men and women from Ishpeming, already dying from the new strain of the zombie infection, fight on until they couldn't stand...

11:31 PM #
...Then steady themselves in their last lucid moments to take themselves out so that they would not turn and attack their remaining friends.

11:34 PM #
All this and more I saw in the flashes of combat as I struck, turned, shot, struck, wheeled & shot again...It was chaos... #zombie #zombies

11:37 PM #
Every zombie in the area went into the pit-trap. We fought off the ones that spilled out into the mine. Now it's time to take out the rest.

11:40 PM #
I'm sending our medic to the camp outside town. He's taking the dogs, even Shorty. He is also taking blood samples from those still alive.

11:43 PM #
If things go badly here, he can at least take those samples back to Sue so she and her team can learn more about the zombie plague. #zombies

11:46 PM #
Everyone else is going into the mine to finish the job. We're leaving the air compressor and generator to run. They have a 24 hours of fuel.

11:49 PM #
Most of our group are taking the explosives and Primacord into the mine now. The rest of us are donning the air tanks and rebreather gear.

11:52 PM #
We'll open up the first sealed door together so I can show the others what to expect when air hits the decomposed flesh and networked brains

11:55 PM #
It's a horrid sight, the black filigree of web-like tendrils connecting brain to brain in the back-lit, translucent flesh...the gases...

11:58 PM #
...then, when the partially liquified flesh follows gravity and flows away, the dark steam as the veins of zombie organism are exposed...