Catastrophe struck with the dawn. Albert Newman was sorting through spare parts scavenged from a nearby junkyard when Jerry Mothra burst into the hospital, panting. "The Boardsies... they're gone."
Albert stood up as Mayer Hawthorne came down from the second floor, looking worried. "Gone?" said Albert.
"As if they'd never been there. No note or anything."
Mayer looked nervous as Albert began pacing. "Why, though?"
All three men turned as gunfire echoed outside. "The zombies are coming," breathed Mayer. Albert looked around for his axe and realized he had left it upstairs. Taking the steps two at a time, he stopped as the hospital door crashed open behind him.
"Stop right there!" yelled a voice, and Albert turned to see not a zombie, but a man standing in the doorway, gun pointed straight at Albert's chest. The man's clothes were soaked in blood, and what must have once been a formal white shirt was frayed up to the elbows.
"What do you want?" asked Albert carefully. "The zombies are heading this way, you know."
The stranger cocked his head to the side, turning to look at Mayer and Jerry, then back at Albert. "I'm not worried about the zed, fellas. It's you guys that have me in a knot." He laughed and pointed his gun at his own head.
It was with a sinking feeling that Albert noticed only Jerry was carrying a weapon-- the baseball bat he took whenever he went on scouting trips. The stranger seemed to have noticed it too, and grinned at Jerry. "Don't hurt me, kind sir."
"Let's just talk through this, nice and slow," said Mayer, holding up his hands.
"Maybe quick?" said the stranger, still pointing the gun at himself. "I've come on a mission, you see. Malton has too many survivors, fella. Like you." He pointed the gun at Mayer. "Are you a psycho-logist?"
"Now, then-" Mayer was cut short as the stranger turned his gun on Jerry and fired, catching him full in the chest. Both Albert and Mayer yelled, rushing forward, but hesitating as the stranger raised his gun again.
"He didn't deserve to live, fellas," grinned the stranger as he turned the gun back at his own head. "It was self-defense, see?" With that, the stranger spun around and sprinted out the door and into a street that was filling up with zombies.
Mayer made to give chase, but Albert dragged him back, kicking out at a zombie that was nearing the hospital's doors. The stranger was already lost from sight. Mayer cursed as the two men retreated, depositing Jerry's body outside, then barring the doors. Kempsterbank fell in a single day.