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Serenity pulled her scarf around her neck as she stepped into the chilly winter air. The sun above lit but did not warm, the thick drifts of snow around her feet were evidence to that. Closing the door behind her, Serenity began a slow walk down the street that felt so empty.

The sun-bleached sidewalk stretched on before her, and it was hard to tell whether she was guiding her feet or if the sidewalk had simply begun to tug her along on its winding journey. As she passed it, a barren tree, withered and brown, let a small tumble of snow fall from its branches.

Serenity startled at the sound, leaping neatly into the air as her head whipped around to look behind her. Jumpy, so very jumpy, but she could see no one. Easing back into what seemed to be her steady routine, Serenity turned her gaze to the foreboding gray buildings in the distance. This was her destination.

Shoe imprints set themselves amongst the sheets of white that covered the area that was the inner walk way of a small, weather-beaten single story house, setting a path that trailed along, leading to the sidewalk, where there was no more snow to leave boot tracks in any more. The sidewalk had been salted, giving them just enough traction to walk on.

Even with the scarf draping around his neck and covering his mouth, the warmth that seeped through created a small visible fog that float out just a little bit before him before returning back to formlessness. He would arrive on time this morning, he even woke up earlier than usual to ensure it.

He lived not too far away from his workplace, enabling him to commute by foot. It was the beginning of another everyday for Garrit, despite the recent changes within his life, and he would treat it as such; a normal everyday. "..." But as the cold chilling touch of winter's breath came upon him, there was hesitation with in his step and Garrit had to pause for abit. "..." He gripped his fingers against his laptop case, closed his eyes and inhaled deeply. "..." After a moment or two, he opened his eyes once more and returned to walk down the street.
Late. She was always running late! Curse her lack of time management or really just paying attention to it in the first place. Of course it didn't help matters that her car happened to be in the shop for the time being, but she'd promised herself she would get up early and be on time! Lot of good that did her. Scrambling from her apartment she stepped outside only to have the brisk air collide against her face and instantly wake her up.

If she weren't in such a hurry she would enjoy the brisk weather and white scenery about her. Instead she tightened the scarf around her neck some and hoisted her books into her arms as she took off running down the sidewalk. Sloppy footprints of an individual in a hurry scattered the snow behind her. Soon, she was in a brisk run as she made her way toward her destination. The only thoughts currently on her mind being that her teachers were going to kill her. Luckily there didn't seem to be many people out and about at the moment so she didn't have to weave around too many individuals.
The quite side street just off the main ave was suddenly jolted alive sending black crows and small sparrows twittering away in clouds of light brown and black. It wasnt but seconds after the birds took flight when laughter filled the air and a young girl waring only her pink bra and black panties stumbled from her brownstone.

Her happy face and childlike laughter filled the air as a couple walking their overweigh pug gasped and froze mid stride in horror. The elderly woman in her thick fake mink coat glared with utter disgust as the young woman tipped toed by her in bare feet. Scrambling after the girl came an elderly woman yelling at the top of her lungs.

"ESST STOP!! ANNA...!! " huffing and puffing the woman was no match for the energy of the twenty something woman.. her long legs carried her nearly a block now where she stood giggling at the traffic lights. Horns were blaring and people yelling as this girl danced in the street. "ANNA!!! please come backhh"

The elderly woman spoke with a thick hispanic accent that only made the girl laugh more as a cab came screaming to a halt right before nearly killing Anna. She stood their with her auburn hari falling into her eyes. Nothing seemed to bother her she was ontop of the world. "Hey lady what the hell... are you..." the drivers voice trailed off as soon as he saw her nearly naked body.. "LADY! WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING.. YOU GONNA FREEZE TO DEATH"

"Ack! Sorry Dinah! Is your tail okay?!"

Celseigh's eyes filled with tears as she fell to her knees to cuddle her kitty. She didn't mean to step on her tail! She was just in a hurry. She had an interview in an hour and walking there in the cold wasn't exactly going to be the highlight of her day. Once she had convinced herself that Dinah had forgiven her, she stood once again and ran half-naked into her bedroom to hopefully find an acceptable skirt. The only one she could come up with was a thin black one that she swore she couldn't fit into anymore. She closed her eyes tight as she prayed to the clothes gods, and stared down at the zipper as it went up easily.

"Wow.." She posed for a moment in the mirror. "Maybe that dance class mom made me join wasn't as bad as I thought.."

Shaking her head to get it back on track, she slid on her shoes and pulled her heavy coat on over her crimson blouse. She was uncomfortable in this sort of attire, but this place was really nice, nicer than the restaurant she worked in now. If she could get this job, she would have it made! She pulled her long blonde hair out of the coat and from under her scarf before yelling her goodbyes to Dinah and slamming the door behind her, running out onto the snow-covered grass.

She had only walked a few blocks before hearing car horns blaring and several people screaming..


Celseigh hurried around the corner and gaped at the sight of a half-naked young woman standing in front of a taxi and it's obviously furious driver. She dropped her purse in the snow and ran over to the girl, grabbing her by the shoulders and leading her back onto the sidewalk. She took off her jacket and wrapped it around the stranger.

"Oh my god! Are you alright?! What are you doing?!"
Serenity heard a commotion coming from the next street and quickened her pace, her small feet gliding over the sidewalk as she ran. Catching her breath at the street corner, Serenity looked up from the ground to find before her a woman, who appeared to be in the nude running about. Coughing, Serenity stood and blinked, the scarf she held in her hands falling to the ground in a pool of cheerful, cotton candy pink.

For a moment, Serenity looked at the woman before her and looked down to her own body before shaking her head self-consciously. Pulling the pearl white coats tighter to herself and cinching it at the waist with a belt, she tried to give her graceless, bony from a bit of padding.

Unsure of how to proceed, she nervously tucked a strand of her fiery red hair behind her ear. The unruly lock had soon fallen from place, leaving Serenity looking out of place, confused, and a bit annoyed at her hair, which never did as she wished.
Running in the snow with shoes that weren't meant for such weather was hard work. She'd already slid once or twice and almost face planted herself. Luckily her balance was decent and she was able to regain herself before she fell. Skidding around another corner, it seemed this morning just didn't want her to get to school on time! Once she hit the busy streets of the inner city the morning traffic was just starting to pick up and it seemed as if some sort of commotion was going on up ahead. Skidding herself to a stop she paused to capture her breath, which condensed in a thick cloud before her.

She heard the screaming first before she saw the half naked chick running around with an old woman after her. Soon another woman came up and wrapped her in a jacket seeming to do some sort of damage assessment. Yeah, another crazy morning in the wonderful heart of the city. It might seem insensitive of her to not stop and offer help, but she was in a hurry. In the distance she could hear the school's bell tower chiming off the time. Ding. Ding. Ding. It rang seeming to taunt her each time she was late still. Cursing quietly she stood straight again and clutched her books to her shivering body as she took off again.

"Excuse me. Pardon me. Sorry!" she called out as she weaved through the thickening crowd. Only a little further and she'd be home free and on campus! Down a class sure, but she wasn't a big fan of social ethics anyways. Boring!! Losing her focus she came to only to see a figure looming before her. No time to react she put on her breaks, but it was too late "agh! watch out!" she called as she skidded into a collision course with the person. She just closed her eyes and went for the ride, it was going to happen either way...
Anna was still giggling as the woman wrapped her own coat around her shoulders and looked at her. Other people went back to their lives and the man got back in his taxi after a few more choice words were barked in her direction. On the corner of the street where Anna had came from a red faced old woman bustled toward Anna. Out of breath and out of patients she was fumming.

"Anna! You have... you have.. excuse me... pardon me... senor... si si... I know.. jes I will" The poor maid was taking remarks from passer bys that had seen the events unfold and were more than willing to tell off the poor woman in her housecoat and clunky snow boots.

"Senorita, gacias por su.. ah yours helps... Anna please please... come home.. whats wrong with you.. what he do to you.. huh...?" the woman's broken english was comical but lost on Anna as she spun around in place and giggled. She was clearly drunk or high or both.. "Anna please..! Come we go home now... come" the woman tugged at Anna and slowly she went with the maid. As they left the maid dug into her pocket and took out $100 bucks and shoved it into the womans hand. "Gacia's..." was all she said as a black sedan rolled up and the driver got out and helped Anna get inside along with the maid and they were off. Anna lowered the window and waved goodbye as she laughed and the maid pulled her back inside. Life on the street fell back to normal.. whatever that was.
An olive drab BMP-1 came roaring down the street, the armored personell carrier screeched to a halt where the black sedan had left, and the rear doors flung open, figures wearing full tactical gear nand gas masks, the fatigues a blue and white pattern none to be worn by Russian forces, the webbing and body armor olive drab, the group of twelve, most carrying AK-74 looking Assault rifles, the last of the group carrying a bigger, heavier weapon, a PKM machinegun to those who knew anything about Russian arms.

as suddenly as they had appeared the figures had dissappeared into the large building, after about a minute, the unmistakeable sound of automatic weapons fire erupted, asm it did so, a man emerged from the BMP, he was clad in the same gear as the others, though he wore a Crimson beret and his gas mask hung from his webbing.

he was shouting in russian into a radio receiver, a pale, painfully thin woman, also clad in fatigues and tactical gear, though hers were clearly US Army issue held the main part of the radio.

"I dont give a damn about your losses, enforce the quarantine with all haste, sergeant Lubyanka, you know your duties, carry them out or i will have you shot!" the burly officer dumped the receiver into it's cradle and looked to the radiowoman
"Tell your superiors that my men have taken casualites, but other than that, the quarantine is going as planned, tell them to send in the decomtamination tucks and the disposal trucks" the woman nodded, before dissapearing into the BMP.

the man sighed, rolling a ciggerette and lighting it as yet another series of gunshots rang out, followed by the deafening roar of the PKM firing a sustained burst.
A few blocked away the black sedan had came to a sudden halt. The driver was beyond himself with such rage that in a flash he reached into the backseat and grabbed Anna by the strangers coat and slapped her hard. Over and over he hit her face, mouth and neck. Her head flopped and the maid screamed and tried to stop the man but in doing so was knocked off the seat and she curled back and cried into her apron.

"Stop Mr... Veeda please you'll kill her!!! Please!!!" she screamed again as Anna was finally let go. He was huffing and fluffing beat red with anger and rage. He nearly blacked out as his daughter cried and crumpled between the seats. Blood covered his hand and most of the seats. Anna's blood was thick and dripped from her mouth, nose and eyes. Her eyes were swelling up face as she coughed and gagged on her own blood.

"YOUR A FUCKING MESS ANNA!!! RUNNING IN THE GOD DAMN STREETS LIKE A FUCKING LUNATIC!!!!" the man hit the steering wheel hard a few times and then grabbed it and shook it.

"WHAT THE FUCK AND IM SUPPOSE TO DO WITH YOU, YOUR A GROWN ASS WOMAN AND IM STILLL.." the man was panting now and flexing his fingers. He gasped for air and panted.

"Mr... jewss okay Senor?? Por Favor... Oh my GOD NO!!" the maid could see the man was not okay he was having a heat attack. He grabbed his chest and fell foward onto the horn. The horn went off and on lookers and the stopped traffic lined up behind the sedan started to get out of their cars. The maind opened the car door and got out..

"Please... please someone... please.. call 911.. please... help help.. me please"
The person was given ample time to react to her plowing over, yet they still just stood there. As they collided she felt a sharp pain and her breath caught before being released. "Oomph!" a deep voice spoke as they fell backwards with the girl sprawled on top of them. Sitting up she looked down at a man perhaps a few years older than herself "s...sorry!" she stammered as she got off of him and gathered her things quickly "I tried to stop but the snow and the ice caught me, and my shoes have no traction. I was in a hurry and not paying attention it's all my fault. If I hadn't gotten up late today and had to scramble around I wouldn't be in a hurry and I wouldn't be in this mess and--" she stammered on and on. The man simply sat up and brushed some snow off of him "Hey, no big. You okay?" he asked with a warm smile.

For the first time really, she took a real good look at the guy. He was actually kind of cute, which just made her blush a bit more from her stupidity. He was somewhat scrawny, but had a little muscle to his body for some shape. Lightly tanned skin and dark hair evenly parted and slightly long. It fell into his face a bit brushing across his green eyes. He also had a pair of rimless glasses on, adding an intelligent look to him. The guy pushed his glasses back into place as he got back into a standing position. He was probably a good few inches taller than the girl.

Blushing again she bowed politely "please forgive me. I wish I may stay to fully make up my clumsiness but I am in a hurry. Please take care" she said taking a deep breath and hurrying off past him before he could really reply to her. The guy rubbed the back of his head and watched her go. " big" he said after her with a soft chuckle. Glancing down he noticed that she'd dropped a paper "hey you forgot--" he paused as she was out of range.
Gilbert was on his way home work when he heard the woman screaming for help. He ran over to see what the lady was going on about only to find that shoots were being fired from about a block away. He ducked his head and reached for her hand. "Come on, they are shooting at us, we have to get out of here." The chubby housekeeper took the mans hand but begged him to help the girl inside the car.

"I cant leave her, please help me.. the fat man is dead but she needs my help.. please" The woman begged as the snow really started to coat the cars and busy street. Horns were blaring as all the traffic seemed to come to a strange halt as explosions filled the air and more screaming. It was like a war zone. It must be terrorist Gilbert thought.

"Yeas I'll help you and her now come on" Gibert grabbed Anna up into his arms and told the woman to follow as the craziness seemed to be sprinkled all around them. As he moved with Anna in his arms and the woman following behind him he almost ran into a man that already looked like he had fallen on the slippery ice. "sorry.. oh.. sorry .. coming through.." he said to the gentlman as he got to his apartment and he and the woman ran into the neat little brownstone. Gilbert was panting as he held onto Anna and then looked back out the door.

"hey Mister.. its crazy out there, you can come in if you like.." Gilbert smiled at him and then turned to take Anna inside. Once he was inside his warm apartment the older woman made herself at home and quickly got a warm towel to clean up Anna's face. As soon as some of the blood was wiped away Gilbert let out a gasp and he stepped back.

"She's.. I mean do you know who that is.. oh my god.. thats.. thats Anna Gaffney.. that model..oh my god.. who did this to her.." Gilbert was near tears as he covered her with a blanket and looked at her perfect body on his hand-me-down sofa.

"her father.."the housekeeper said.. "her father.. he was not a good man"
AS the gunfire stopped the throaty roar of several MTVR '7-ton' Trucks took it's place as a convoy of five heavy Trucks, all bearing United States Army Special Operations Command signage though as the vehicles came to a stop, the soldiers that leaped out of teh first and fifth vehicle were clad in Sealed NBC suits and carrying a multitude of thick black bags, they swiftly moved inside the building, as they did so, the doors to the fourth truck opened, and more soldiers in NBC suits stepped out, though they did not carry any bags or movem inside, instead, they ushered the Seemingly Russian assault team, now minus a member, into the truck, closing the doors behind them.

as all of this happened, a Man, clad in teh dress uniform of a United States Army Colonel approached the BMP, and the BDU clad man who had seemed to be in charge of the 'russian' forces.
"It would seem you were right Colonel, The Targets indeed did have 'Natalya' though they did not know how to handle it and subsequently released it into the Building, we are lucky we cought this when we did, another hour and most of the creatures would have arisen to plague the neighborhood, as it was, Lubyanka's team encountered at least thirty or forty creatures, and one of the men was infected and killed by them, fear not, we left him for your men to deal with" The Russian's eyes hardened as he spoke, especially when he spoke of his fallen soldier, it was as though he was tring to appear callous and uncaring, when in fact he was actually the opposite, though the American Colonel either didnt notice, or didnt care.
"Very good, as soon as Decontamination is complete, your men are to report back to the joint headquarters, an aircraft is waiting for you at 'the airport' you did well here Major" Even though he spoke quickly and precisely, the Colonel spoke in some sort of code, and the Russian Major paused for a moment as he decyphered the information in his head, when, after a few moments he had finished, he noticed his soldiers, now wearing clean fatigues, their weapons and Tactical gear shining as though freshly washed, some still even damp approach
"Of course Colonel, Dasvidanya" The Russian saluted the American before turning to enter the BMP, his soldiers following.

Before the doors had even closed the Armored Vehicle was moving, heading back in teh direction it had come.

Gilbert knew he had his hands full and on top of that it felt like the end of the world. What had he missed? Was their some invasion he didnt know about? What would have happened if he had stayed at work and not gone home for lunch? Everything was upside down and on fire in his mind as he heard more gun fire. He jumped and ran to the windows. Looking back at the woman and hurt young girl his stomach lurched.

"Come on, we will be safer in the basement." Gilbert picked up the girl as the maid grabbed a few things and followed Gilbert into the basement. "I have a few things down her and a stove heater.. its not much but until we know whats going on its the best we can do" he tried to smile as he set Anna on the small futon and then went to close the door of the basement and pushed a small trunk before it. He didnt know if it would help with the heavy machines he heard going off but at least it made him feel better.

The maid covered Anna up and them tugged on an ugly old military coat she found in the corner. "And this senor? whos is this..?" she asked after she had already zipped it up. "Oh that.." Gilbert looked over and sighed. "That was mine, I was in Iraq, until.. until I was sent home, my wife commited suiside when she found out that I wasnt coming home in time for the birth of our first child." Gilbert was still numb to the tragedy and only blinked as he told her flatly. "Yeah, she was 8 months along and jumped from the Hendry Hudson bridge." Sighing again Gilbert looked around and then stopped what he wanted. It was a small cabinet and he opened it up and took out a bottle of whiskey. He drank right from the bottle and didnt turn around. The maid was stunned to say the least. She was at a loss for words and then looked at Anna who was sleeping well. It was going to be a long night, she could feel it.
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