The sudden shaking of the house woke Scott up.
Still groggy, he looked around the room with blurry eyes, when another violent shake instantly cleared his mind.
He got out of bed only to be knocked back when the house shook again.
He recovered and ran to the window to see what could be causing the earthquake like shakes.
In the sky were a dozen ships off in the distance. He could see bolts of lights coming from them, followed by explosions from the ground.
A few seconds would pass, and Scott’s house would shake from the percussion.
Scott was a former Marine, so after the initial shock of seeing what was happening, he jumped into action.
His mind raced. His first thoughts were of his ex-wife and kids.
He pulled out his cell phone and called his ex.
“April!” he shouted into the phone, so he could be heard through the noise at both ends.
“Scott! Is that you?” she shouted back through the phone.
“Yes! Where are you?” he asked.
“Home!” she replied. “We’re all home!”
“Get in the basement and wait for me!” He yelled. “I’m on my way!”
“Scott! Scott! What is happening?” she asked, full of terror.
“We’re under attack! Just grab some supplies and get to the basement! I’ll be there soon!” he answered, and then hung up the phone.
He knew he had to hurry. He knew this was only the initial barrage. Next, would come the ground troops.
He ran to his room, grabbed his military backpack and gun out of the safe.
He took out his gun and jammed a clip into it. He then threw all the ammunition he had into his backpack, and then ran to the kitchen.
His pack was already heavy, so he grabbed half a dozen bottles of water, and a few food packs he saved for a rainy day.
The door slammed behind him as he ran to his car.
Dust filled the air as he sped off down the dirt driveway.
He knew it usually only took twenty minutes to get to April’s house with little or no traffic, so he hoped he would luck out and not have too many obstacles on the way there.
Unfortunately for him, that wasn’t the case. As soon as he got close to town, he could see that the roads were a mess. Cars looked like they had been thrown around. Some were in piles while others were flipped on their sides and on fire.
Scott weaved through the mess the best he could, only scrapping his car a few times.
An explosion went off to his left and he watched as a car on fire flew in the air over his car.
Then came the screams. He could see people running around like chickens with their heads cut off. They were almost all in shock and didn’t pay him any attention as he drove by.
The next thing he knew, he was flying through the air as the ground beside him exploded. He clutched the steering wheel and waited for the inevitable crash onto the ground.
The world turned grey and blurry as his head was banged around in all directions.
The sounds of screaming and explosions were the first sounds to return. Slowly the blackness turned grey, and then blurry. He kept himself still until everything came back into focus.
His whole body ached, and he groaned as he tried to reach his seatbelt release.
He was hanging upside down, so when he released the grip of the seatbelt, he fell hard to the roof.
His body came to an awkward rest, and he slowly crawled out of the vehicle.
Blood streamed down from above his eye as he low crawled out of the car.
He laid there, catching his breath.
People were running in all directions and there were new explosions erupting every minute and seemed to be picking up pace.
He squatted and grabbed his backpack out of his wrecked car.
Without a minute to lose, he started limping away.
Fortunately, it wasn’t long until he was able to get out the kinks from the crash, and he began to jog lightly.
As he jogged, he was relieved that the ships weren’t leaving their positions over the city in the distance and heading toward him.
He was jogging parallel the city, so he hoped they would stay long enough for him to get to his family.
When he reached an entrance to a neighborhood, he detoured in. He knew there was no way he was going to be able to jog all the way to their house, so he needed to find another car.
A few houses in, he saw a dead body of a man lying next to an open door of his car.
When he saw a blast mark on the dead man’s chest, he immediately squatted.
‘This is from no explosion,’ he thought. ‘This is from a ground weapon.’
He quickly scanned the area, looking for the source of the weapon, and then he heard a scream from up the street.
The keys to the car were lying next to the body, so he picked them up, but before he got in the car, he ran to the side of the neighboring house to see if he could see where the scream came from.
From the angle he was hiding, he was able to see the body of a dead woman with smoke coming out of her chest, but he didn’t see her attacker.
All of a sudden, a huge creature in armor stepped over her body into the open. It must have been ten feet tall. It stood on three legs and had insect-like arms.
The weapon he was holding looked like a miniature cannon.
Seeing that its prey was dead, it began to scan the area for another target.
‘There’s no way I’ll make it to the car while that thing is standing there,’ Scott thought, but he knew he couldn’t pass up this opportunity to drive away in that car.
He decided to give it few minutes for that thing to walk off looking for another target. He was about to give up, when up the street and from around the corner, a group of people ran into view, seemingly escaping a different attacker.
The creature turned and began running towards them.
It ran fast too. Scott guessed it to be running at around forty miles per hour.
He knew that was his chance.
He ran to the car, turned it on, and as quickly and quietly as he could, he backed up into the street.
Not wanting to draw attention to himself, he didn’t’ even start to close the door until he was moving forward and up the street.
Throwing caution to the wind when he looked into the rear-view mirror to see that the creature had noticed him, he slammed the door and the gas pedal at the same time.
It took all his concentration to maneuver around all the debris around him.
Once he was on the main road, he took a moment to look into the rear-view mirror to see that the creature had gained on him considerably and was getting close enough to draw its weapon and open fire.
Finally making it to a clearing after all the wreckage, Scott pushed the gas pedal to the floor, launching the car forward.
He took another moment to see where the creature was.
Realizing that it wouldn’t be able to keep up, it drew its weapon and began firing at the car.
Each time Scott saw a flash of light, he instinctively swerved. It worked. Each shot fired from the creature missed him and it wasn’t long until he was out of range.
Scott could only take a brief break before he once again was dodging explosions. This time from a shuttle size ship pursuing him.
He groaned as he was barely able to dodge the first two shots.
He frantically looked around, looking for a place where he could escape this rapidly approaching ship.
The only option he had, he took.
The car screeched as he turned into a grocery store parking lot and without hesitation, slammed through the front entrance, careening through rows of selves until the car came to a crashing halt.
He knew it wouldn’t be long until the ship caught up, and a few of those creatures jumped out to finish him off.
Limping, but still able to move quickly, he grabbed his backpack, and ran to the back-warehouse area.
Instead of running out the back door only to have them start chasing him again, he found a large container behind some shelves that he could fit into.
A large explosion came from the front of the building, as if it was hit by a wrecking ball, and more crashes as the creatures tore through the doors to the warehouse area.
Scott held his breath as he heard them slowly moving around, probably searching the space for him.
He slipped out his pistol, ready to put up a fight when they found him, when a loud siren sounding noise erupted.
The creatures turned toward the sound and began running toward it. Back toward the ship.
Scott stayed in the container, gripping his pistol until he was sure they were gone.
As quietly as he could, he climbed out of the container and looked around, half expecting a creature to be waiting for him.
‘I guess I wasn’t worth their time,’ he thought relieved.
He cracked the back door open to peek outside. Not seeing any immediate threats, he stepped out.
Explosions could still be heard in the distance as he jogged across the street and took cover between two other buildings.
Recognizing where he was, he knew he wasn’t that far off now. Easily a ten-minute jog.
A screeching sound erupted over his head as he saw two fighter jets swoop by, one of them launching a missile into the distance.
The smoke streak of the rocket was followed by a huge explosion. Whatever it hit, erupted into a pillar of smoke that Scott could see over the roof of the grocery store.
Not wanting to waste any more time, he returned to the task at hand.
He jogged at a brisk pace, staying behind cover and crouching as much as he could. He was happy that he hadn’t encountered any more creatures along the way.
While he spent most of the time just trying to stay alive, there was a small part of his mind that wanted to just lay down and die, afraid that he still wouldn’t make it in time.
Relief filled him when he saw that his old home still stood erect and there didn’t seem to be any creatures hunting in the area.
He crouched by the back door, giving his surroundings one more glance before opening it as quietly as he could.
He kept his pistol raised as he cleared each room he entered, until he reached the basement door.
Tears began to slip out as he saw that the front part of the house had been decimated by an explosion, including the basement door.
It took all that was in him to go down and search for the bodies of his ex-wife and kids.
He took in a deep breath and began stepping down the stairs.
An explosion of drywall from the wall beside him threw him to the ground.
When he looked up at the hole, he almost laughed when he saw that it was too small to be from one of those alien weapons.
“April?” Scott called out.
“Scott?” she replied, timidly. “Is that really you?”
“Yes,” he answered, almost laughing hysterically.
April and the kids ran up the stairs as he ran down, meeting in the middle, where they all but tackled him.
He took a moment to hug them both, and then led them back down the stairs.
“I saw some jets fighting back,” he started. “I think we’ll stay here the night. Since the house upstairs is destroyed, we should hopefully be left alone by those creatures. Tomorrow, we’ll set see if it’s safe to look for more people that survived.”
They all collapsed exhausted in the corner of the basement. No matter what the next day would bring, at least for now, they were together.