Some notes before I start:
After having Luka as my character for a long time, I wanted to spice things up a bit, still keeping the Aksakovs in my backstory has allowed me to play with it a fair bit
I am sorry for how long it is (3670 words to be exact) this took me about 5 hours to write and I got into it a fair bit, the longest piece I've written for a while.
It will not be perfect, I am not a writer, nor have I done this for over a year so criticism is welcome!
I am not a graphics guy, at all. So i am sorry it is just text I have tried to break it up best I can to make it easy to read.
I will update this page with other stories Deryik's experiences in the world with some diary entries later on!
Please play this for some background music as you read!
The Story of Deryik Lowell
By the time the last of the screaming stopped, the daylight was starting to find its way in through the cracks and onto Deryik’s face, lighting up the blood running down his face and the tears in his eyes, this was definitely not what he had in mind that Monday morning…
Before all of this, Deryik was a happy man, he had a wife of 2 years, a small house, loving parents, small circle of good friends and a stable job as a system administrator and head technician for a small hosting company, however he did not handle making new friends or social interactions very well due to the way he lived his life, he wasn’t a genius, he wasn’t rich, nor was he very athletic for that matter but he was happy and he wouldn’t trade his life for all of the money in the world. He was content with his place in life, something very few people could say.
Little did he know, his job, the one thing he has worked at for years, would see his life turned upside down...
On Monday 6th October 2014 he was woken up at 2:04am by his phone, a call from his boss telling him that the servers in Chernarus had crashed and it was a hardware issue, more importantly that he had a flight to Vybor, Chernarus at 10am. Deryik insisted that his wife come with him, as they could use a holiday somewhere abroad and his boss happily complied, whatever it took to get that server back online.
No-one at the company really understood the decision to get a server box up in Chernarus, it was in the middle of nowhere important and didn’t have much traffic, just one specific address which always sent some garbled data at the same time every day. Clearly the boss was doing something the staff shouldn’t know about, so they just accepted it and shut up, it didn’t harm anyone.. for now.
As soon as Deryik even saw the plane he was taking to Vybor, he instantly realised this wasn’t going to be a luxurious place, the plane was a small passenger plane that was rusty and looked like it was about to fall apart, let alone fly. It was just Deryik, his wife and some old couple who didn’t speak English on the plane, no in-flight services, no baggage areas, just ‘dump it anywhere’. Deryik was not religious, but he prayed that the fix was easy and fast so he and his wife could get home by tomorrow.
Upon arriving, the rest of the place matched the plane, rusty, old and worn down. He was shown to his ‘cab’ if you could call it that, some run down car driven by some old man who just grunted and pointed at a map on the back of the passenger seat, he pointed at ‘Lopatino’ which conveniently was right next to the airstrip, maybe he could be home tonight!
Once shown into the ‘Hotel’, which was just a pub with some rooms upstairs, Deryik dropped off his bags, agreed with his wife to be back before dark and headed off to the server, which was marked on his paper map with a big red circle.
This was not a normal server room. This was a warehouse, one where servers do not belong unless they are being scrapped. He reached the front gate and an armed man came out of the hut demanding ID. Once it had been cleared that he was in fact a technician coming and not some attacker he was allowed through, Deryik knew he had to get out of there as soon as possible, this was not a friendly place, armed guards walked around everywhere and he was personally escorted to the server ‘room’ which was just a metal container with some servers sat in it, his boss clearly wasn’t the ‘ethical’ type when it came to making money.
Deryik saw the issue straight away, a fucking bullet hole in the main console, he wasn’t about to question how it happened in the worry that he would end up the same as the console so he just quietly rang his boss and explained the situation, expecting to be told to come home and just wait for a repair from the guards or someone else. But oh no, his boss wasn’t about to do that! Deryik’s day was getting worse each second as his boss told him “You will stay in Chernarus until you get the replacement parts shipped over and the server is back online”. Deryik, wanting to keep his job, agreed to stay as his boss said it’d be maximum a week until replacement parts, little did he know that week is all the world needed to become fucked.
As he walked out of the ‘server room’ he bumped into one of the guards and made him drop his AK.. Deryik got the dirtiest look he ever had received and a couple foreign words thrown his way, all he managed to muster up was a ‘sorry’ as he quickly departed, but not before catching the patch which said ‘Stanley Aksakov’.
Upon arriving back at the ‘hotel’ his wife hugged him and asked if they were going home, when she heard the news she broke down, begging him to go home but Deryik stood his ground, he was not going to lose his job because his wife couldn’t handle one week in a rundown country, granted it was a complete shit hole. Eventually his wife agreed to stay for the week, no longer, and they settled down to sleep…
The next days were interesting to say the least, just spending all the time in the pub avoiding the public best they could, but soon news spread of an ‘infection’ in Chernarus that caused infected to act like rabid dogs, attacking everyone in sight. Deryik needed to get out, regardless of if he could fix that server, he needed to get out of Chernarus, right fucking now.
By the time he had packed his bags and got ready to leave and as he stepped out the door the pub owner yelled in broken English ‘You can’t leave. No planes.’ Deryik and his wife just stopped dead on the spot and stared at the owner in disbelief, not believing him, they hailed a taxi to the airfield…
On arrival there were armed men everywhere, military, before they even reached airfield territory they were stopped and turned away, again with broken English from the soldiers ‘No planes. Stay here.’ So reluctantly they went back Lopatino..
When they returned they went back to their room and locked the door, scared for their well-being Deryik rang his boss. All that followed just increased the discomfort and worry for Deryik and his wife. “Sorry, there is nothing I can do, the borders are closed. You are on your own. Good Luck.”
They just sunk into their bed and prayed for it to be over.. that it was a bad dream…
They were awoken to gunfire, screaming and moaning from downstairs, looking at their clock they could see it was 1am, they debated hiding upstairs but Deryik opted to go and look, see if they could get some help, maybe a gun for self-defence…
Unfortunately, what he saw was not what he expected, there was bodies all over the floor and a group of mercenaries from the warehouse where the server was stored stood in a line behind a pile of tables, their guns still smoking..
Instantly Deryik recognised the guard he bumped into and out of panic shouted “Hey! Its me! The IT guy!” Big mistake. All guns were aimed at him, triggers itching to be pulled, Deryik gulped and tried explaining he was perfectly healthy and “please don’t shoot, I’m innocent”.
Stanley burst out laughing and so did the rest in unison, when one of the others spoke up to him in relatively good English “Look, we’re all there is left of this town, the rest has gone to shit, we’ve lost some men trying to fight off these rabid dogs and we could do with all the help we can get. We trust you as you are a friend of our bosses, therefore a friend of ours, so let’s get the fuck out of here!” Deryik noticed his patch ‘Luka Aksakov’, clearly these mercs were more than just friends, they were family.
Deryik called his wife who slowly came downstairs with him, leaving all of their belongings in their room, they handed him and his wife a pistol each with a couple mags spare. Considering they came from England, they had no idea how to shoot... let alone kill, but they stayed quiet as this was their best hope to get out of this mess alive.
As they stepped out of the pub they saw it, smoke, fire, the smell of death… there was nothing left alive, they slept through this?! Hah… They were always called heavy sleepers by their friends.
As quick as they had left the building there were more infected on them, the mercs very easily dispatching them on the way to the warehouse..
By the time they reached the outskirts of the town there was a train of infected hot on their tail, Deryik still not firing a single shot off, got tackled by an infected as it ran out of an alley, hungry for blood. As Deryik fell, he made sure to land on his back, the infected on top.
This was his first up close encounter with an infected, the face no longer recognisable, just blood and mucus dripping onto Deryik’s face as he snapped at him. Carefully pulling up the pistol, he put the gun against the infected man’s chin, closed his eyes and pulled the trigger, splattering blood everywhere.
As he got slowly up, Luka grabbed him by his collar to his feet and forced him into a full sprint, he could hear the infected growling right behind him as he just looked forward and ran.. Ran as fast as he ever had in his life.
As they hit the warehouse, the first mercs there made sure his wife and him got through before turning to enter themselves, unfortunately one of the men was grabbed as he went to come through the gate and was pulled into the wave of infected, now frantically trying to get through the gate. Luckily it was solid steel and locked.
They had made it, but only just, lost a man and Deryik had to shoot his first ever gun... at a man. Well, not really man anymore, but he used to be. They locked the main doors and made a bee-line for a cargo container with a padlock on the front, right next to the ‘server room’. Luka whipped out a key and unlocked it, displaying a very nice array of weaponry, spare clothes, tents and other survival equipment, such as hunting knives, cooking pots, water bottles and cans of food. Luka told them to take what they wanted and that if they wanted to, they could stick with the mercs, there were 14 of them right now, safety in numbers and all, Deryik and his wife agreed to stay.
Suddenly, Deryik’s wife screams “My locket!” This wasn’t any normal locket, this was her mums, which was passed down generation to generation, and she had put it in her bag to take back to England. Which was now in their room, in the pub, back in town, past that sea of infected.
The look on Luka’s face when he looked at Deryik and realised he wanted to go back was priceless. Basically a ‘Fuck off, you’re crazy.’ Type look.
Following a short argument, Boris, another Aksakov family member, pointed out the fact that he had dropped his bag which contained all of his spare ammunition during the fight in the pub, which just so happened to be at least a third of their total ammo count out of the container before they left, as he didn’t think they would be returning.
Luka just sighed, looked at Stanley who also shook his head and muttered some more foreign words before saying ‘Let’s go.’
Deryik grabbed a combat vest, a backpack filled with food and water and an AKM with 2 spare mags, while not having ever shot a rifle, he felt more protected. While his wife kept hold of her pistol and just grabbed a backpack.
The other mercs seemed to follow Luka and Stanley to the grave, not questioning their orders once, reading the rest of their patches showed that at least 6 of them were also a part of the Aksakov family. These guys were loyal to the grave, but would they be loyal to Deryik, an outsider?
The noise of the horde was still very dominant, with the smell of rot taking over the air, they needed to get out of here, now.
Luka checked the back doors hatch and sent one of the men up the inside ladder to look out over the top, to see their best route of escape, which was surprisingly the back gate, as the infected were piled up at the front, still not broken through the strain clearly visible on the gate.
They double checked their packs and carefully opened the gate, and they slowly crept out one by one to the back entrance, which was a small single file gate in the fence. Eventually they were out of the compound and found themselves back on the outskirts of Lopatino, which still had infected shambling around, clearly interested in the other bodies strewn across the street.
They somehow managed to reach the street with the pub, unfortunately there was at least 30 infected shambling around outside the pub, obviously attracted by the pile of bodies outside and inside.
Luka looked at his men and they started speaking in Chernarussian, so Deryik just held onto his wife and waited. Eventually, Luka turned to Deryik and whispered ‘We’re going to throw a flare at the end of the street and dart into the pub, hopefully it won’t attract too many.’ This was their only shot, and Deryik trusted him, so he nodded in agreement.
As Luka counted down from 3, Stanley got ready to pop a flare, 2, an infected had got a little too close for comfort and tilted its head, growled and stared right at Deryik, who’s heart stopped at that moment, 1, Stanley threw the flare right as the infected screamed and charged right at Deryik which got the attention of the rest of the pack in the street, now all looking at their way..
“Fuck it! Just run!” was all that came out of Luka’s mouth as the 16 of them jumped up and ran as fast as their legs would carry them to the pub, shooting infected as they went.
The first merc to get into the pub, Victor, was face to face with at least 5 infected, all of who darted on top of the poor guy, he fired off a burst of bullets into the wall as he let out an agonising scream, just making the infected outside growl louder.
The rest of the team ran into the pub and pushed the infected off of Victor, but it was too late, he was dead by the time he pulled the trigger.
They all ran upstairs, hoping to funnel the infected into easy to kill line, like shooting fish in a barrel. Deryik’s wife ran into their room and grabbed her locket, putting it into her pocket and coming back out to hug Deryik as tight as she could before they both went to hold the line with the other mercs. Luckily Boris had grabbed his backpack as he ran through the pub, so they didn’t need to go back downstairs, not yet anyway.
They just would not stop coming, gun flashes lighting up the hallway, as the survivors got pushed back slowly by the never-ending wave of infected that flooded the building. Over the gunfire Luka was yelling orders to hold and not back down, but ammo wouldn’t last forever and there was going to be more infected than bullets on earth at this rate.
Stanley yelled something in Chernarussian and Luka agreed, turning to Deryik telling him to cover his ears…
Five different mercs all pulled out grenades and threw them at the crowd on the stairs as a last ditch effort to thin the horde. As the grenades bounced along the floor and heads of the infected everyone ducked and covered their ears right as the bang went off, shaking the building, causing a blinding flash, a deafening bang and the last thing Deryik saw was a piece of door come flying at him.
When he woke up he saw blood, lots and lots of blood. There was blood on the walls, the ceiling, the floor, even the air tasted of blood. He looked to his right and saw one of the mercs patches “Alexis Aksakov”, unfortunately the body it was attached to wasn’t really a body anymore, it was more mushy mess of blood, guts and bones. Clearly the grenades didn’t care who they blew up.
As he stood up, his ears no longer ringing, his wife called to him, still disorientated he just stood their yelling ‘What?!’ He soon knew what, as an infected latched itself onto his left arm and removed a large chunk of his flesh right before it got a bullet to the face. Deryik looked at his wife in shock as she lowered her smoking gun and just looked at him with disbelief.
It didn’t last long as one the mercs had fallen back behind the two brits and were yelling for them to move it to the back of the hallway as there were still some infected in the building. But they didn’t move. They didn’t even blink, Deryik was bit, he was going to die and his wife felt the guilt of it all, unable to cope they locked eyes, right as an infected pounced on top of Robyn and took a massive bite out of her neck, but was quickly dispatched by Luka.
This was it. This was the end of Deryik’s perfect life, his happy life. All washed away, all gone. And it was all his fault for taking this damned job.
Deryik fell at his wife’s side, tears streaming down his face, ignoring the infected that were practically breathing down his neck. Stanley grabbed him by his vest and dragged him back into the group, while he held onto his wife’s collar, not letting go, she was still breathing.
As the team mowed down the remaining infected, Deryik just cradled his wife, muttering ‘I’m sorry’ repeatedly as they just stared into each other’s eyes for one last time. She managed to get out the words ‘I love you, stay alive. Please.’ As she gave into the inevitable he replied with a tearful ‘I promise.’ And kissed her on the forehead as her eyes rolled into the back of her head and she took her last breath, with a small smile on her face. Her dying in his arms did two things to Deryik, firstly it gave him the motivation he needed to survive, he had to keep his promise. Secondly, it caused him to go into a state of depression, which would show in the coming weeks…
As the last of the infected fell and the growls grew silent, Deryik’s watch buzzed, it was 6am. The sunlight was starting to come through the cracks in the walls and windows, illuminating the hallway, if you could even tell it was a hallway anymore. Luka patted Deryik on the back as the rest of the group lowered their weapons and took in the sight. A sight they would never forget.
Deryik took the locket out of his wife’s pocket and put it into his vests top pouch, to make sure it stayed safe. While he was doing so, Boris noticed the bite on his arm and worryingly pointed it out the remaining survivors, who raised their guns at him the moment Boris opened his mouth. “Woah! What!?” was all he could say before Luka pointed at his arm, looking down Deryik remembered his wound, the bite.
He was still going to die, he was bitten, it was how it killed people!
Deryik made a plea, keep him alive and with them for now, if he showed any signs of infection, such as a fever and flu-like symptoms, then they could put him down, but as none of them had turned, unlike some of the other mercs who had been bit previously. They agreed, he, and the rest of the group may be immune. As he stood their making his plea he realised there was not as many of them as there was before, not only had Alexis died, they were missing three others, there was only 9 of them left, excluding Deryik. His bite, his head wound from the piece of wood that had hit him in the head was also bandaged, along with some of the others who had sustained injuries from the explosion, Luka had a chunk of wood sticking out of his right thigh, which they bandaged around and planned to pull it out when they reached a safer place.
As Deryik’s watch buzzed for a second time, indicating it was now 7am and the sun had reached the end of what remained of the hallway, lighting up the piles of bodies and guts that laid along the floor, walls and ceiling. The damaged, wounded and broken band of survivors slowly dragged themselves out of the dreaded hallway, down what remained of the stairs, out the front door and towards the forest to the south of Lopatino to make camp, all the while praying this thing to be over as fast as it had started…