Neal stood outside a disgustingly squalid ranch-style house in Earth City, Missouri and shook his head. The entire town had been quarantined in order to locate the source of the deadly infection, but one glance at this dump should have immediately ended the search. How had his team overlooked this place?
The ass-high pasture that occupied the space normally reserved for a lawn was littered with abandoned, rusting appliances and a truckload of crushed, empty Busch Light cans. Where it wasn’t missing, the cheap vinyl siding was wallpapered with Notices of Condemnation, and it sagged under their weight like Susan Sarandon’s weary old tits. Weeds sprouted from the muck clogging the gutters, and the roof had more holes in it than a meth addict’s smile.
Neal had seen rat’s nests that looked more appealing.
He pulled out his Ceeker and flipped it on, completely unsurprised when the needle on the bacterial detector slammed into the peg at the top of the red zone. This was definitely the place. He glanced at the name smeared on the mailbox in what looked like a mixture of tar and old grease and wondered if ‘J. Click’ was as gut-wrenchingly filthy as his abode.