Lawson
United States
Greenville
South Carolina
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It was a beautiful summer day, and my usual pack of two (ages 9 and 7) had grown to include a 10 year old friend.

It was the kind of day when it's hard to imagine anything can go wrong -- a good soaking rain had scoured the clouds from the crystal-blue sky. It had also softened the earth on all freshly dug graves, giving the new inhabitants there easier purchase as they clawed their way up to freedom.

I sensed the stirring of my undead minions, and, also, the hunger of my three young charges. As my forces scrabbled free of their unhallowed graves, I fed the wee ones lunch -- among other things, their tender brains are at their tastiest when their blood sugar levels are just so.

Now, the struggle could begin. The Anti-Undead League learned the shapes they would take for the battle -- from three grade-school children, they morphed into two teenagers (Billy and Sally) and two adults (Becky and Sheriff Anderson). Transformation complete, they took their starting positions. The Sheriff and Becky began in the center of town, while the pair of sweethearts, like gaggably sweet couples from time immemorial, chose to be in the place where their love took bloom -- the high school. (For them, the smell under the bleachers is aphrodisiacal, I gather.)

The zombie sense of time is not, apparently, one that prioritizes promptness, and only four of my legion had made it to town by the time the showdown began. They began shambling toward the high school, outpaced by Becky and the Sheriff, who was racing to make sure his son was still alive and to see if he and Sally had discovered any particularly awesome weapons.

As the human foursome scrambled to strip the high school of anything of potential use to them, my horde grew, spawning more loathsome kin and taking over the gun shop. The heroes glanced up from their looting (of public property! Sheriff Anderson, in particular, should have been ashamed!) and, at last, steeled themselves for assault by my slavering, soulless warriors.

The Sheriff's revolver proved maddeningly effective, and his ability to pick off zombies emboldened him to head out of the high school and wade into the oncoming pack. Unfortunately for him, even the trustiest revolver eventually runs out of ammo and, badly wounded, the Sheriff had to retreat to receive healing (and, perhaps, other types of succor) from Becky, the Florence Nightingale of that godforsaken town.

Billy and Sally had finally found weapons -- a club and a flare gun -- and rushed out into the open to try to take down enough remaining zombies to cut the heart out of the invasion. Their dreams of victory and escape rested hugely on the flare gun, and their disappointment was keen when, unbelievably, it misfired. Billy swung the club wildly, but his panic and lack of prowess showed -- he kept failing to deliver the solid head-smack required to take a zombie out, and his wounds were mounting.

Meanwhile, the zombie pack was growing in numbers and in power, carving out new spawning pits and taking over the plant and the general store.

The endgame was coming, and everybody knew it. (Well, to the extent zombies know anything, I suppose they knew it.)

The heroes' first plan was to group together and take down the few remaining zombies they needed to kill as a group, with Becky acting as a one-woman medic unit. It was a brave plan, but as the many zombies surrounded those intrepid heroes, the scale of the danger finally dawned, triggering disbelief, horror and manic defiance.



Billy and Sally's youthful resilience (and Sally's shocking power to bring good luck her way) kept them alive, but even Becky's most tender ministrations were insufficient, and Sheriff Anderson died, gasping, in front of his son and the rest of the battle-tested band. They averted their eyes, I believe, as the zombies dragged what was left of him away.

Clinging to life, desperate for weapons and running out of time, Billy and Sally rushed for the relative safety of the nearby bank. Billy quickly found a revolver, but to no avail -- a resilient zombie just as quickly broke it. Becky, near death, crawled as fast as she could from the onrushing horde, knowing any moment could be her last and that her death would trigger the horrific victory chant of the graveborn, unbearable to human ears.

As a group of zombies came within view of Becky's brave but tearstained face, still more of them approached the bank. Reflecting an odd kind of Jungian racial memory for the undead, the zombies seemed to "remember" past instances when clustering tightly had proved dangerous in the face of heroes who had found a shotgun -- in any event, they spread out in a curtain of doom around the bank.

Gritting her teeth, Sally opened the last intact file cabinet, and, amazingly, found a pump shotgun! Untrained in that particular deadly art and mindful of the importance of gun safety, she passed the gun quickly to her newly-orphaned love, Billy.

With only two minutes before the setting of the sun on the last of their hopes, and with a brief glance at Becky, crumpled against the outer wall of the gun shop and hemmed in by grasping zombies, Billy reached inside himself for a last scrap of strength and fired the shotgun, taking out the final two zombies needed for victory. The remaining zombies crumpled in defeat.

The heroes, having snatched victory from death's grim jaws, were jubilant. I celebrated with them, smiling sweetly while silently vowing to see their brains delivered to my hungry, stumbling multitude as soon as possible.

And then I took them to the pool.
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Rhi Stormbringer
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hahahah
Fantasic write up and it's really great to see young kids playing board games and seem to be having a wonderful time
Hope to read of their next adventure.
Thank you for sharing that with us

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Rod Batten
Canada
St. John's
Newfoundland
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Very well written and entertaining session report. Thank you very much!
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Joel Carlson
United States
Pepperell
Massachusetts
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Awesome session report; I really enjoyed reading it!
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Lawson
United States
Greenville
South Carolina
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Thanks for the kind words!

I love this game, and the session I wrote about was an especially fun, down-to-the-wire experience.

I'm not sure how obvious it is in the report, but Becky was one wound away from death (in a situation where her death would have resulted in a zombie victory) and she was completely trapped in between (1) zombies and (2) taken-over buildings. On the next zombie turn, it's quite likely that she would have died, so the human victory was really pulled out of a hat.

To add a little factual backstory, my 9 year old son was handling Nurse Becky and Billy, my 7 year old daughter was handling Sally, and their 10 year old friend was handling Sheriff Anderson (and then, after his untimely demise, Nurse Becky). The picture is of the moment that the hero team was all in a single square, surrounded by zombies, which I found hilarious -- my son is the dark-haired boy on the left, the friend is in the middle and my daughter on the right.

One thing that surprised me during the session was how effective Sally was -- because of her ability to force zombie fight dice re-rolls, it was really hard to wound her.
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