The Interstates were clogged with stalled cars and infected waiting to attack. By being creative, Rev was able to get them out of Minnesota and they were slowly working their way south. He reckoned they would need to go south of Missouri for the weather to remain comfortable, and hole up while this weird shit played out. At least he had good company, who was sleeping in the back seat for the moment.
They had stolen cars to keep going, and traded up whenever possible. He was now in a delivery van, full of (mostly) fresh baked goods. They had nibbled on bread, but now he felt queasy and unsatisfied from the carb overload. Still, it was better than being hungry, and this vehicle was air conditioned, so he was not inclined to complain. If not having meat was the worst thing that happened to them on this trip, it would be a damn fine trip. Every now and then, an infected person would wander up to the road and hiss and snarl at the cars that went by. He couldn't learn much about them at sixty miles per hour, but he did observe a few oddities. For example, they had zero fear. One had wandered into the path of a semi, and never showed a reaction, even when the truck hit them and threw the body in the air, pulping the bones and dealing a fatal blow. Rev had a spectacular view of that one, and when he passed by a minute later he could see the person trying to work their busted bones to sit up. They were unable to, but their face registered no pain. When he passed by, the man in the ditch had turned his head (guess his neck wasn't broken, haha) and stared at the Rev and the van with pure hate. Or pure something, at any rate.
They were cruising through northern Iowa when they passed a car that had broken down. A ragged family of four were standing by the road, while dad cussed a steaming mess under the hood. The kids were lookouts, turning their heads and scanning for danger, while mom stared balefully at her husband. Rev slowed down and one of the kids shot him a hopeful look. He nearly passed them by, but saw the back of the station wagon was piled high with food and supplies. Well now, this could be interesting. He braked hard and glanced at the sleeping girl in the back. She was out hard.
"Can I help you folks?" He put on his best smile, and gave them a weary glance, as though he might be a little afraid of them. That put dad right at ease, and they were whining about their bad luck when their oldest son turned and shouted.
"Dad! There's one right there!" Sure enough, a man wandered out of the woods. He was relatively clean, with his shirt still tucked into his jeans. Rev could tell he was infected, but he must be a fresh case. He had the stagger and the thousand yard stare of the others, but hadn't had time to be beaten up by the elements. The blank look made Rev think of his work with the mentally handicapped kids south of town. They had also been able to look both attentive and completely unaware all at the same time. Now that he thought about it, some of the walking movements were the same, too. When the boy shouted the man became aware of them. He immediately changed his course and began to walk as quickly as he could towards them.
"Hop in, but throw in all the supplies we can," Rev told them. He opened the back doors of the van, and they began hurling food and blankets and clothes. He told the kids to get in the passenger side, and the three adults were able to get just about everything loaded before the infected guy got close enough to be a danger. When they pulled out, he made a lame effort to chase the van, then turned his attention to the steam. In the rear view mirror, Rev watched him hold his hand in the steam while trying to figure out how to eat or attack it. A normal man would have screamed and pulled his hand back, this guy just looked confused and pissed.
"Thank God for you, sir," the woman told him, and smiled at him cautiously. "He would have had us for sure."
"He does work in mysterious ways," Rev said. He was careful to keep his voice level, and smiled back.