“Where’s Saito? Is he back yet?” I called out suddenly. We were worried. It’d been much longer for him to get back than we’d expected.
The others confirmed no one has seen him. The others are also even more worried than before. There’s also a tumult of panicking people around us that makes it hard for us to hear each other and people are pushing each other to get out of the way of all the trouble.
The semi-gang of people around me were pressuring me to close the tall spindly barricade now. We’d gathered as many students as we could and they were pulling themselves through in droves now. The students were really scared as they ran through. They looked like scared rabbits, but I’m sure we all looked like that too. I also detected a funny smell; some people had lost their bladder control in fear.
But the question is, what horrors they saw downstairs that made them piss themselves like that. And they won’t stop but keep running past us.
“Help! Oh my shit! We’re gonna die!”
“Run! Run away!”
“Their right behind us!”
“We can’t fight back without weapons!” someone else cried out.
That’s the real problem. We’re having to improvise weapons against whatever is down there.
All kinds of such comments were heard as the scared students ran through the aisle. Some of them were so afraid and so panicked they ran into parts of the barricade. Then they had to pick themselves up and move through. A lot of them were also looking over their shoulders, afraid of how close behind things were.
They all had the same afraid wild eyed looks of people seeing and living through trauma and covered in grime and dust from fumbling through the ruins of the school. Some of them had torn clothes too, but so far not many had bad wounds.
Then after that more and more of the students who were wounded ran through, as time progressed. This was a marked difference and was also a warning sign that things would start to happen so. Some of those wounds were from skirmishing with the creatures downstairs, but some would be from cuts in the wreckage. Little by little though, the wounds were worse, and more and more injured were coming through.
“Do you have any other weapons available?” Some of them asked us, gazing at Akira’s spear and my fire axe covetously.
“Don’t even try to take it,” Akira warned preemptively, narrowing his eyes at the jealous. He kept his fingers tight around the spear, which was really well made.
Such looks were why I hadn’t wiped any blood of the axe blade yet. The fiercer I looked the less chance someone would try to risk taking it.
“Sorry, grab a chair, or a desk to use as a shield,” Yuriko said. Yuriko, being one of Akira’s group. She was also on the volleyball team with Yumi, which was how I knew her name. She was a tall lean kid with long hair that towered over the others and very athletic. I was a bit jealous that Akira had snatched her up for his team. The people that were athletes were already recruited fast.
“Why a desk?” one of the newcomers asked.
Yumi shrugged, “they aren’t that bad. Just use what’s available to protect yourself. Some of the people by the windows have used the wood panel to block arrows already.”
In the few minutes that things had been going on, things were better organized now. There were a few dozen teams of ten each, with so many that I couldn’t keep track of everyone. It was also still building from there. There were too many people I didn’t know though, and this was where Yamamoto Sensei had started to shine, since he knew people’s names.
He screamed at people that were too scared to fight and bullied the cowards back to the fighting line when he caught them trying to slip out the back or go to the roof without being willing to defend the line. In some cases he punched or kicked them until they went back to the defense line.
It had only taken seeing all the arrows coming through the glass windows and the two bodies of our classmates there for him to get motivated. The deaths of the students had him really mad. We then got that anger channeled into having him handle the coordinating of the teams with me and Asakura Sensei, with the three of us in charge.
Some of the other teachers seemed to be hiding somewhere, and weren’t to be found it seemed. The missing teachers consisted of about eighty percent of the teachers on the third floor. We still hadn’t had any teachers from the first floor join us yet and that worried me more. We had no idea about teachers from the second floor either, but some had probably sacrificed themselves to save their students, when they were attacked. They probably had also mistakenly believed their classrooms would be safe zones.
I found out that some of the missing teachers had panicked and ran when Noru Sensei was killed by his students, deciding to tough it out on their own. Some of the student’s later confirmed and reported they’d seen them running away from the school into the meadow.
“Get ready to close the barrier, it won’t be long now and we’ll have to do it fast when the time comes!” Yamamoto Sensei barked raising his fist of fury. He’d gotten some of the judo students to get ready to close it. Anyone that was big or strong looking was pulled right up to the barricade. He put them to work like dogs, which was pretty much how he ran the judo club and teams.
“This fence is your life!” Yamamoto Sensei screamed at them furiously. It seemed to be working. They liked the familiarity of his abusive training put into real life it seemed.
“Saito should be coming back soon,” I nervously muttered after a few more minutes, though only Yumi, and Akira could hear me.
“You think he’s still alive? Why isn’t he back yet? He was supposed to only be in and out,” Akira wondered.
“He’s been gone awhile,” Yuriko said carefully.
“Let’s try to give him a chance,” I said, not being able to mask my own discouragement.
“I hope so. He’s a nice kid,” Yumi exclaimed, her brow creasing in worry. Yumi was using a broom spear with a dull knife tied onto the end at first. It wasn’t in good shape, but it was better than nothing. Near us she’d switched off to have Asakura Sensei take care of Rina and stay with her. But most the time, she had to shield me and herself, and then ended up giving it away to perform shield duties again.
It would be their job to help coordinate carrying the wounded up to the roof during the fighting, using a few low strength girls as the muscle. At first the girls helping them had complained about it, but then they realized the strong people would be needed to hold off the creatures attacking us they got really quiet.
“Help! Help me, they are right behind us!” screamed Saito, as he edged close to the barrier. I suddenly felt relieved that he was still alive. He was like our hope; that people could get back to us from the second floor, so his coming back was important to us.
“Save him! Help Saito please!” Yumi and a few other girls pleaded.
He was limping and wounded, with wounds on his right shoulder and leg and trying to carry some girl who was nearly beaten to death with his good shoulder. She’d been beaten up so much and so bloody that I couldn’t tell who it was at first. He was trying to get closer to us, but the kids who were helping him carry her had been cut down and he was the last to escape.
We heard the snarling coming from the stairwell underneath him getting much louder. Whatever they were it was very, very close.
Yamamoto Sensei snapped his finger and two big kids ran forward and helped him carry the girl back up. They handed her off as carefully as they could, but she still yelped in pain when her wounds were disturbed in the transfer of her weight to theirs.
“Saito? Is that you?” Akira called out.
“You have to close the barrier now. They’re coming up the stairs! Those things! They fucking aren’t human! Do it! Do it now!” Saito choked out.
“What does he mean they aren’t human?” someone said.
“Not human, can such a thing exist?” others start the murmuring and a buzz of voices is around us fearful of what it is. But nobody can get Saito to identify what he saw. He might not even know but looks terribly afraid.
“Oh my! That’s Tanagawa from our class!” Yumi exclaimed tearfully.
“She looks really bad,” Kenji said slowly. “What happened?”
The wounds on Tanagawa looked bad enough she might bleed to death as she made it up with the last group of people. She was covered in cuts and her arm was mangled. “Th-they got to our class first,” she cried in a croaky voice while some of the support girls began carrying her upstairs.
“Did anyone escape from our class?” I asked.
She shook her head, “there was no warning. Our room was the first hit. I’m the only one who got out, and only because I was scared to be in the room alone with Mori and Abe. I saw them trying to fight them, but it looked kind of bad. I saw those…those things hit the room. They’ve been storming the whole building room by room using their larger numbers. They kill the boys and then carry off the girls, while trying to…violate them. Kill me before that happens. I don’t want to be raped.”
That incites some measure of courage in the gathering of vigilante defenders around us but it’s not good enough. It makes some people even more scared.
“Oh my…” Yumi exclaimed. “I’m so sorry Tanagawa,” she pleaded.
“…not you’re…fault…” I heard her say as she was carried off. She was in terrible pain.
In front of us Yamamoto Sensei and the judo and sports people had closed the barrier just in time. We heard screams of anger and death threats in some strange language as the creatures hit the barricade. The judo people struggled to keep them back by pushing back on the other side of the barrier and still having to dodge thrown objects and arrows using cover from whatever they could.
“Kill the Fuckers!”
I heard a lot of different comments from students around me yelling back. They were getting mad after what they’d heard Tanagawa say. She didn’t realize how much she’d made people want to fight rather than be violated or killed.
“I can fight…” Saito croaked weakly.
“You look like you will fall over dead. Go rest,” I said.
He shook his head. “How can I when all this is going on?”
“Well guard the roof then. It’s where the wounded will be going. We need someone sturdy and reliable watching that position too and keeping it secure for a fallback option,” I said.
I heard Kenji and Yuta congratulate him on saving people, but I was feeling bad that he got hurt since I was the one who asked him to go.
“What the fuck are those things?!” several students exclaimed.
Everyone is afraid of being laughed at too for describing what they saw. It sounds like something fantasy or science fiction and some people won’t say.
It was getting easier to see them now because of the torches the creatures were holding. Thankfully also the school was entirely brick and concrete or they would probably also have burned us out. It took a little while to see them clearly though, because they liked blending into the darkness whenever they could and didn’t want us to see how many of them there were.
The creatures were some kind of strange really big pig-men with gray and greenish skin it seemed. They had small stubby ears that were shaped almost pig like, in addition to their noses also being somewhat flat and pig like. But their arms and muscles were like people and they walked upright. They had jowls and overly round faces that seemed kind of fleshy and fatty. They were also strong with bulky big bodies that were overweight, and kept trying to wreck the barrier and push against it to get rid of it, but we were pushing back on our side. It wasn’t until later I realized they were as big or bigger than we were, but the barricade masked that from us.
In contrast, Japanese people are usually much shorter…and thinner.
It’s completely different!
It’s also really freaky to see something coming at you full of rabid hate!
In some unknown language the pigmen grunted and snarled back at us. All of them were heavily armed with crude weapons of spears, bows and arrows, clubs, and homemade tools, while wearing loincloths made from the furs of animals. With great strength they were trying to bash at the barrier, which was thankfully made of metal parts mostly.
“Are they pigmen, or orcs?” Kenji wondered aloud.
“Maybe pigmen are orcs,” someone said.
“It doesn’t really matter if they are pigmen or orcs, but just they are dangerous as fuck and heavy,” someone said.
“So pigs eat anything, guess that means us this time,” someone else said in a tired tone.
“Like hell we’ll get eaten!” someone screamed in defiance.
“Push them back!” someone said.
“Don’t let them in!” a girl said.
“Drive them out!”
“My gosh, they are so freaking ugly!” I heard students say this several times.
“Shun, please don’t let them take me alive,” Yumi pleaded in horror. I could see tears streaking down her pretty face.
“We’re going to fight don’t worry!”
Then I was surprised at how tenacious they were. The barrier was piled pretty high but still they were trying to climb over it. They couldn’t shoot their arrows over it effectively but they still tried. Then they were surging over each other and the barrier, while we hacked at them.
They were fearless and seemed to be in some kind of blood frenzy too it seemed.
The first one to reach over the barrier was stabbed in the chest by Akira, with his spear. Then the body fell down into the barrier itself pinned in a mess of desk legs, but others were coming behind him. Thankfully the ramshackle nature of the barricade made it so they could only maneuver slowly and awkwardly.
“Hold the line!” Akira yelled, holding up the spear as a challenge. It was the right thing to have him help, I realized.
“Yumi, I want you to just focus on being a shield for both me and you,” I suddenly decided.
“Eh?” she was puzzled.
“Try to block arrows being shot at me and you, so I can swing at them with the axe,” I coached.
The next pigman that came over had his skull crushed by my axe, as he dripped a mess of green blood. I’d smashed his skull so badly the eyes in his head had been forced out of the sockets of his eyes and were floating weirdly while dripping down his face.
After making sure the one behind him didn’t surge forward over him, I then while pulling back my weapon hand used my other hand to grab the club the creature had dropped, handing it over to one of the judo kids. Then we fished out the other weapon, after dodging a few arrows from his brethren.
“Good thinking, if we cut them down slowly we can increase our weapons,” Yuriko exclaimed excitedly. “We’ll get through this! We can do it!”
The others also began to work in this manner, and soon the others were also working with one desk shield person and one weapon holder working together in duos.
“We can do this! Fight!” Yuta said next to him, as he also used his pipe club to bash at other pigmen trying to climb over the wall.
But they were getting more aggressive with their arrows and they had some skill with their little bows, which I hadn’t expected. Within twenty minutes of fighting, one of the judo kids was shot in the shoulder, and had to be pulled off the barricade. Then another kid got grazed but stayed to fight.
We kept chopping at the pigmen as much as we could but now they’d changed to try to adapt. As they got closer to us, they were trying to use the dead bodies of their brethren as shields against us, because of the way the bodies would lay on top of the barrier and be partially out of our reach.
“Dang it. We need to stop that. We can’t let them have a trench to hide in,” Yumi exclaimed. She was getting pretty good at being a shield maiden and several times deflected arrows aiming for both of us.
After that Akira had stabbed five more within the next half hour of fighting, and I’d chopped three more in the chest popping their lungs and chest cavities. We both fought and competed with each other, but he had the edge of longer reach with his spear, but I could engage them better once they were in range because of my weapon being steel and most the pigmen weapons were made from wood and obsidian.
It was still going to be a long night. There seemed to be no end of them. At least the barrier was acting like some crowd control tool.
But are they pigmen or orcs? Or they could be a variant type polluted version of both mixed too if their genes will allow it.