Friday, November 15, 2013

Child of the Apocalypse, Part Two

Slipping from the windowsill, I check the steak knife I have hidden in the boots I liberated from two apartments back, as well as the pair of hatchets I’d taken from the previous apartments. My pool stick/butcher knife had broken before I’d even gotten out of St. Charles, turning into a temporary spear and then a very weak cudgel.

My ears perk as I hear the telltale kak-kak-kak of gunfire in the distance. This being Texas and all, I’d truly expected to hear more of it throughout the past six months, but with each day I heard less and less of it. Gunfire gathered the zombies attention… well, whatever was controlling the zombies. Those black tendrils that slid out from the wounds and the zombies arms and mouths were too alien to be some strange earthborn parasite.
Maybe something a government lab cooked up?
Who knows and frankly, who cares? Barring the revelation of what the zombies origins were also revealed some strange weakness they had, I was so over trying to figure out what caused the dead to move around. The few groups I’d joined (or more along the lines been absorbed into) always loved to talk about what could be causing the whole mess. I figured that was a grown-up’s problem, seeing as I didn’t rightly care.
I just wanted to live long enough to hug my parents and little brother again.
Shucking on the trench coat I’d taken from some army surplus store I’d camped out in for a few days, I made certain to grab a few packets of plastic wrap, and begin mummifying myself slowly with the constrictive material.
The bite of the zombies was hardly the worst thing they could do to you, as almost all of them possessed the ability to projectile vomit with startling accuracy a black mass of those wriggling worms, all of which seemed keen on slipping into your skin like leeches. I was with one group where a computer geek was running the show, and watched him take a face full of the slimy crap.
He was down in three seconds and up in another four, moaning and groaning.
Wrapping my arms and moving onto my legs, I think about the next two blocks and what I’m trying to get to.
A radio station. Namely a country station that my Mom had loved to listen to when she was dropping me off at school.
Now while I was as big a fan of country music as your typical teen (i.e. not), I did appreciate the stations ability to broadcast messages… like distress calls. And a year in the AV club would hopefully serve me well enough when presented with a full stations sound board.
I somehow doubted it myself, but all I really had left was optimism. And nothing could take that away from me.
Groooooaaan!!! Came from the other side of the door.
“Goddammit…” I mutter, cursing my own idiocy for tempting fate. With one leg half wrapped I merely cut off the plastic and pat it down, praying the Kevlar leggings will prove enough for me to avoid any worms today. Moving quickly, I gather up my satchel and machete, shoving my hat onto my head as I affix my scarf over my nose and mouth. Looking at the flimsy barricade, I can already see the wood splintering on the door, coagulated blood seeping through the cracks.
“Time to move,” I mutter, ducking through the window and out onto the two-foot wide ledge.
The breeze I’d just finished savoring blows, causing me to curse it to Hell as I almost lose my balance, forcing me to hug the brick wall of the apartment building as I slowly shimmy the ten feet to the next window. I wince as I hear my barricade shatter from within last night’s sanctuary, the snarling dead sniffing for me. With the breeze and the open window, they’ll spend hours trying to find out where I am.
Making it to the next window over, I reach out with my machete and tap the glass a few times, trying to get the attention of any undead lurking within. After a few minutes of listening to the undead tear up the other room, I decide to try my luck with this one. Dropping to my knees, I peek in through the window, and sigh as I see a fine layer of dust over everything in the cozy little apartment.
I wedge open the window (fun fact: when you live on the third story of an apartment building, you apparently don’t lock your windows) and slide into the apartment with an undignified roll.
I immediately regret this as I hear the low wheeze of one of the dead coming from a room off to the right, a wheeze which halts as I thump onto the floor. Looking up, I see a withered old woman, hair falling out of her head and glasses askew, shuffle into sight, several tendrils sticking out of her forearms, waving in the air blindly. She opens her mouth, revealing teeth lined with black slime as she chokes for a moment that I unfortunately know means…
She just puked on me, a sickening splat as hundreds of leeches writhe against my chest in jellied black goo. I stare down in horror as the tiny lamprey mouths open up and begin digging into the plastic wrap covering my chest, seeking the warmth underneath. Swiping down with my protected arm, I throw the globule against the wall with a horrid squelching noise, just as the elderly lady decides to bull rush me, teeth gnashing and fingers curled into gnarled talons.
Machete in action, I swing down hard into the ladies shoulder, splintering bone as I separate flesh, my grip on the leather handle keeping her an arm’s length away from me. She snarls and hisses as I reach into my boot, pulling the steak knife slowly so as not to cut myself. Jamming the blade into her throat before she can work up enough mucous for another wad of spittle, I push it in deep, cutting into her spine, before yanking to the side and severing the left half of her head from her neck. Twirling the ebon streaked blade in hand, I slash and stab at the opened wound, ignoring the bubbling mass of black slime pooling at my feet as I hack this woman’s head clean off her shoulders over the course of a minute.
Her body finally goes slack and I breathe a sigh of relief; damn that bitch was a tough old bird.
“Maybe I just need to sharpen my knives?” I mutter to myself, looking at my dirty steak knife, before I wipe it off on her pink sweater. Picking up the head by her hair, I chuck it unceremoniously out the window to the street below.
I can hear the dead in the apartment over hammering on the walls to try and claw their way over to me, having heard the mild commotion grandma made when I snuck on in.
“No rest for the wicked…” I mutter before moving to the bathroom.

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