The Ranger

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Summary

A virus wiped out most of humanity. There's no mutants, undead, or anything farfetched roaming the planet, only survivors. Survivors who are twisted, scarred, mortified at their own existence and who are fuelled by regret and coming to terms with their own mortality. Groups are formed, power is established, but nothing really changes. The only change now, is that the street battles for supplies turn into whole town battles for territory. In Britain, among a giant group of lunatics, an armoured group of fascists, and the remnants of the military lies one man. The devil. The bloodthirsty wanderer. The one man army. He goes by many names, the most common being the ranger. He's the most dangerous person alive, and a threat to the clans, who have tried and failed many many times to kill one man with a few guns. He's mowed down armies, destroyed encampments, and destroyed vehicles, all to protect his siblings. He's the most dangerous person, and the most skilled, but never put real effort into attacking others. But now his family is dead, murdered by men sent by one clan, who were armed by another, and travelled around in the armoured vehicle of the other. They all had a part to play in an act that would shift the field, and to the ranger, they must all pay. Revenge is a fools game, and with nothing left to lose, he must be the biggest fool of them all.

Genre:
Action / Other
Author:
HollowWhispers
Status:
Ongoing
Chapters:
2
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
18+

Catalyst

2020. The Coronavirus pandemic rocked the world. Things got worse when the second wave hit, by which I mean 98% of the worlds population died. All forms of government and society collapsed. All authority, and security dissapeared. The world became a mess of people hiding, and others running amok looting, and killing. There was no chance of a cure ever being made, or being developed anymore, since most scientists were murdered or died trying to vanquish the very thing that killed them. Many businesses were raided, buildings destroyed, cars totalled. It was, in the very definition, total anarchy.

10th October, 2030, 8:00am. The UK was hit hard, since on top of the 98% globally, 99.7% of the UK was wiped out. Just under 200,000 survive among the ruins of society, all spaced out across the country.

The small fairly industrial town of Washington, in the Northeastern region of the UK, is quiet. In one House sits a girl and boy, the latter of which is shaking. He's shaking because he doesn't understand. Doesn't understand that his condition is-

Gravel shifting becomes audible outside. The sound stops, and is followed by car doors opening, and slamming shut. Through the cracked window, the sound of a pump action shotgun is audible, which causes the older of the two, the girl, to worry. She's holding the boys mouth shut with her hands, who has red eyes and tears down his face. His hand is shaking, his legs are shaking, his eyes are shaking.

Wood snaps, and the door downstairs is shot off its hinges. Heavy footsteps approach the stairs, as softer ones enter the other rooms downstairs. They reach the top of the stairs, and are followed by the softer sets to the upper floors. They come along the landing, and stop outside the door both sit behind.

The shotgun produces a deafening crack, and a second one after it, as the door is blown off its hinges. The girl covers the boy, yelling and crying. A tall man in a black leather trench coat and boots stands with a 12 gauge shotgun in his hands, and a shaven head. Behind him is a smaller man, also shaven of the head, and with a leather jacket and sawn off shotgun. They walk in, and grab the girl, who flails and pulls away, grabbing a lamp and smashing it off the taller man's head. He groans, and unloads 2 shots into her. The first blows out her stomach. The seconds completely takes off her arm. She falls onto the boy who is rocking and crying, with his hands on his ears. The man grunts, and blows his head off, the boys corpse falling to the ground. They turn, and aimed the shotgun at me. I was paralysed in the corner, unable to move, barely able to see and hear. They aimed their weapon into my eye, the dirty barrel visible to me.

"Should we kill him?" A blurry voice called out. It was impossible to work out who was speaking.

"No. The toxins in his system will kill him painfully, in a few hours"

"That fucker deserved what he got, killing our men. Hope he feels every part of it"

"Come now"

Both left the room, and footsteps echoed up the hall from the stairs, until they were audible through the cracked glass. Then, doors opening on a car, then shutting. Gravel shifting, which faded to silence. And I was left there, unable to move, or react, or do anything. Staring, for hours, at the corpses of my sister and brother, before passing out from weakness.

31st October, 2030, 8pm. I was sat on an old, stone cobble wall bordering an overgrown field, just outside of Washington. It was cold, and since the winter months were coming in it was also dark. I sat in complete darkness, before my face was lit up by the orange glow of a lighter. I didnt smoke however, and the lighter was purely to make the photo I held visible. It was me in 2020, stood by my sister smiling, and my brother to the right holding his arms upwards and grinning wildly. I just stared at it for about a minute, before carefully folding it and placing the memory in the breastpocket of my jacket. Darkness came over me as I lifted my thumb from the lighter, and I got up from the cobble wall, heading down the dirt track behind it almost completely blind.

I stopped at a hole in the fence running along my right. Behind it was a row of factories, one of which had faint lights coming from the windows on the roof. I crouched down, sliding my rifle and shotgun through first before crawling in first, and hooking them back onto the backpack I had. The moonlight lit the concrete paving that ran along in front of and between the warehouses, as well as the leaves and grass on the buildings. After 10 years, nothing was completely overgrown, but ivy, grass and leaves were more common everywhere. I stood to my feet, walking towards the building slowly until I reached a set of metallic stairs, which led up to a catwalk that wrapped around the entire roof of the warehouse. I slowly stepped up to said catwalk, making sure each step was nothing more than a small, inaudible clink. Once at the top, I walked along to the front side of the catwalk, and leaned against the wall, looking in through the dirty, grime covered window.

There was tables with drink on them against the walls, aswell as seats around them made of plastic. In the centre was a crowd, all wearing black leather jackets and having shaved their hair. The only exception to this was the 5 women lined against the wall to the side, each wearing a black T-shirt and jeans, but with their hair intact and arms clasped together in front of them. At the back was what seemed to be a makeshift yet sturdy stage, and a giant banner on the wall. The banner was black, with a skull on each side of the word "Authority", which was in bold and even more visible by its white colour. Atop the stage stood a man, whose head was shaved and wore a black trenchcoat. He also wore a leather belt, thick black pants and leather boots.

"Alright people," the man atop the stage yelled out, silencing the crowd gradually, "I know we've all been through some tough times recently, what with our outpost at Edinburgh being wiped out by The Ranger. But we don't need to worry about that anymore, because on this Halloween night I bring you some good news from the boss!". He stroked the side of his short beard for a moment, a wicked smile coming over his face. "The Ranger is dead". The entire crowd erupted into yelling and shouting, everyone clearly happy that their worst nightmare was "dead", and that they could now relax. "I was told to save it for tonight, when the boss allows us our Halloween celebration. I watched him die myself, and made him suffer for it too. I shot his brother and sister dead right before him, and since that fucker was paralysed he couldn't do a thing about it". It was clear he was enjoying every part of what he said, as his disgusting grin was spread wide across his face. If I had no self control, I would have shot him right then and there, but I had better plans. "Anyhow, in light of such an event we can celebrate it safety! Ladies, please serve our strong men their well deserved alcohol. And remember!"

"We are authority, we are undefeated" the crowd chanted, before going over the the drinks. I spat over the catwalk banister, unholstering my shotgun and beginning to wipe down the barrel.

11:30pm. It had been 4 and a half hours since they'd all began celebrating, and by now most of them were completely mortal. I climbed down from the catwalk, priming my pump action shotgun as I walked to the smaller, non industrial door to the warehouse and knocked. After a moment, the door opened, the person revealing themselves to be a woman. Their eyes widened, before they fell backwards wimpering softly, clearly still mortal. I stepped in, shutting the door behind me before stomping on her head and knocking her unconscious.

I held the shotgun in both hands, one finger resting on the wood next to the trigger and the other hand gripping the slidable handle on the barrel. Looking around I realised that nobody was paying attention, since they were either too drunk or passed out. I looked down at the woman, who was developing a mark on her head from where I had stomped on her. I simply pressed my boot down on her neck hard, twisting it in place slightly as she made some gurgling sounds. After one hard press down blood came up around my boot, and lifting it revealed the flesh had ripped and torn where I had pressed down, blood oozing from her neck as her face and fingers began to turn purple faintly. I stepped past her and over two more unconscious people, until I reached 2 people in the corner. It was a man and women, the man pressed up against the woman and the latter being pinned to the wall, begging him to stop as he tore her shirt off and began to pull down her pants.

"Fuck face" i called over, the man staring at me briefly before a shotgun blast exploded his head into a cloud of blood and flesh. The woman was sprayed with bits of the man, her face now red and her ears presumably ringing.

"Th-thanky-" the woman started, before i blew her head off also, having readied the weapon in advance. I once again pumped the handle, turning to face the entire room slowly getting up.

I walked onto the stage, blowing a hole into the chest of the man sat up on it before sliding the handle of the shotgun again.

"Here's how this is going to happen," I called out to the room, everyone still clearly drunk and disorientated. "You are all going to line up on the wall facing it, with your hands on your head. If any of you look away, you die. If you don't listen, you die. There is no alternative". They all looked slightly worried, some wobbling to their feet and walking to the left wall. One looked down at the girl from before, whose neck was oozing with blood.

"F-fuuuuck Nancy!" He yelled out drunkingly, looking across the warehouse at me. "I'll blow 100 holes into your goddamn skull you psycho!" Said man went for his rifle, which was one of many weapons leaning against the right wall. He didnt get far before i shot him, his side exploding open and him falling to the floor in agony. I walked over to him, as he screamed and flailed about, before loading the shotgun again and blowing his head wide open.

I turned to face the rest of the sorry bunch, who were all shaking and whimpering as they lined the wall. I immediately blew off the head of the far left one, which shocked the others as his headless body left a trail of blood down the wall.

"You call yourselves the authority, "I stated, loading it once more. "You call your soldiers the peacekeepers. You say you want to build a functioning society that everyone can prosper from. But...we both know that's not true. You are the selfish, racist bigots who hang people of colour, people with disabilities and the old. You are the people who drive around in police cars like its 2020 again, except instead of maintaining the peace you disturb it. You are all disgusting, wastes of space who deserve the worst form of death, and eternal punishment in hell. I can guarantee at least one of these".

With that, I unloaded a shot into the chest of the peacekeeper on the far left, causing him to slide down the wall in agony. I kicked his head into the wall over and over with my hell, shooting out the side of the lass next to him. As his skull folded in on itself in a disturbing display of gore, the girl collapsed in pain. Out of ammo, I changed the magazine, loading the shotgun once more and shooting out just the side of her neck, which she held in excruciating pain whilst gurgling blood. Priming it once more, I shot out the left leg of the next guy, before shooting his right leg also, both coming off pretty messily. I then shot off his arms, kicking him to the side. With 2 of them left, I loaded the gun once more, shooting the left peacekeepers right arm clean off. He jerked in pain, before i blew his left leg off, upsetting his balance and causing him to fall and squirm. I walked over to the last guy, who was shaking heavily.

"Turn around" i ordered, loading a fresh magazine into the shotgun. He simply shook more, my response being to shoot his elbow, tearing his forearm off in a disturbing spray of blood. "Turn the fuck around now!"

They shakily turned, staring me in the eyes whilst gripping their blood spouting stump of an arm. I kicked out his legs, the 7 foot giant falling to his knees and allowing me to look down on him.

"You know exactly why I'm here, don't you" i asked. He gritted his teeth whilst rocking slightly, nodding his head. "Then you know, that you arent going anywhere but the fucking underworld buddy. I fucking suffered alright, watching you blow the fucking insides out of my only remaining family. Difference between you and me is that I recovered from that toxin. You arent gonna recover from 6 holes in your chest". I kicked his chest so he was right against the wall, before unloading a shot into his shoulder. He screamed as I kicked the wound, before shooting a second hole into his side. Another reload, and i unloaded into his shoulder. By now he was between passing out and waking up, abruptly over and over. I shot again, this time into his other side, and after reloading blew open his stomach. True to what I said, I pressed the barrel into the centre of his chest and pulled the trigger, the flesh flaring and coming off him as the majority of his back exploded against the wall.

It was late. I was tired. After cleaning my shotgun and jacket with a rag as best as I could, I exited the warehouse and walked to the fence. As was standard, I slid my rifle and shotgun through first, following and then hooking them onto the backpack again. The field ahead had really tall grass, which i waded through carefully to not flatten too much of it. I then threw down my backpack, laying my head on it and beginning to drift to sleep.

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Further Recommendations

kirstielowry96: I love this book! Very well written. Very mature written. Keep up the good work!

ppratap: Good good happy

kianaday: Easy to follow, great storyline and character development for the main character. I love that the transition from a memory to current situations are easily determined.

Madelynn Schuh: I thought it was a well thought out intriguing book wi the lots of plot twists that I really enjoyed

Reine D : I am addicted to this story. I can’t stop reading and it keeps you wanting to read more. The character’s backstories and developments are wonderful. Also, love the strong heroine.

Rose Watson: I can't wait to see what hapoens

Kayla: this book is really cute but it takes me a while to get my phone to get

Littlelum: This is agony having to keep waiting 😭😭😭😭

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tammikelley1219: Love this book so far. Can't wait for more updates.

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