For Apocalypse month our Flash Tales will not be so random. This month’s flash tales will be tales of the apocalypse – and today’s tale is set in the NOLA Zombie world. This is not a character that was in the NOLA Zombie books – he’s new. Enjoy.
This is an unedited NOLA Zombie short. All content © 2016 by Gillian Zane.
Nixon – two hundred and forty-three
I had survived one thousand, three hundred and twenty-two days. Alone. Well, the majority of the time I was alone. I had made the mistake, early on, of teaming up with a few breathers. It was in the beginning. When I was only a dumb kid. I learned quickly that they only make things harder, the living that is. Their fear and stupid emotional reactions drag you down. They want to talk about their feelings and go on and on about how they just want it to go back to the way it used to be. They quickly labeled me the bad guy because I didn’t get all torn up when shit needed to get done. Like when Amanda had gotten bit.
I didn’t want to even think her name. She was a good kid. Barely fifteen.
So, I left. They wanted to wait and see. They wanted to treat her. She could be cured. She could be different. Denial is how you die. They thought I was the big bad because I wanted to separate her, lock her in a room, maybe kill her. There had been accusations. Screaming. They told me to leave. I left.
I didn’t turn around when the screams of anger turned to screams of fear. It carried over the air. The night was cool, the sound carried, I still remember like it was yesterday. The moans of the dead became more excited, more energized as the screams of the living intensified. That was nine hundred eighty-two days ago.
Now I knew better. If they were alive, they would know better. The bites change you. They should have let me kill her. But, they had hope. And this world wasn’t one where you could let hope grab ahold of you. Hope meant death. Hope was for morons. Hope was dead.
This world wasn’t for the stupid or the hopeful. It was for the strong and the smart.
You couldn’t be weak. You couldn’t be led by your emotions. I had started out weak. But, luckily I wasn’t stupid, so I made sure I wasn’t weak anymore. The old me wouldn’t recognize the person I was now. Wouldn’t know what to do with this new me. The extra forty pounds I had carried around were sloughed off because there were no endless nights behind a computer. There also wasn’t that much to eat. I had definition in my arms and my chest because of what it took to stay alive these days. Killing was quite a workout.
I could have let myself get soft again after the planes had come. The planes that flew low as they blew out noxious gas. The gas was followed by xerox copied pamphlets that boasted about a cure. We were saved. We had a government that would come to the rescue.
La tee fucking da.
They forgot one thing, though. What about the fuckers that they didn’t gas? The ones in the houses? The ones under bridges or the ones in remote areas that they weren’t able to get to? Typical government.
Like the group that was coming toward me, right at this moment. I smiled. I’m sure it was insane looking. I enjoyed killing them. My post-apocalyptic workout. I had been so weak when this all went down. Now look at me.
Swing. Chop. Thrust. Repeat.
It hadn’t always been like this. The first large group I took out, my arms had ached for days. Now, it was like second nature. I gripped the machete in my hands, like a bat. A small one stumbled toward me. It’s head reached my chest. I logically put together that it was a child, but I didn’t want to acknowledge that. It was just a short fucker. I planted my legs and waited for it to get closer. The moment it came in reach I swung.
“Batter, batter,” the sound of crunching skull was pleasant in a psychotic way. Wet shit flung back as I made contact with the skull. My machete cleaved through the head with less effort than I expected.
“Fuckers zero, Nixon two hundred and forty-three,” I banged my blade on the sidewalk to dislodge the flesh that still clung to it. They were getting slower. The second one hadn’t even reached me yet, it limped painstakingly forward, it’s mouth gaped open. A horrid sound emanated from its throat, it wasn’t quite a moan, more like a rattling breath.
One swing of my blade and it went down with a wet crunch.
I glanced to the left and right to see if there were any more coming. None. That was the last one. I was on a deserted road, in the middle of Who-The-Hell-Knew where. I wasn’t really paying attention when I had driven up here. I had started moving a few months ago and hadn’t stopped. Head South. Seemed like the smart thing to do at the time. It was better than up North. No winters down South. The winter had nearly killed me.
Fucking almost froze my ass off. Almost burned a few houses down too. After a blizzard that had me holed up in some shit-hole motel for a month, eating stale cheese twists and drinking melted snow, I was done with that crap. I needed sun and humidity.
I slipped my machete into the homemade sheeth on my thigh and got back on my bike. I wasn’t used to riding long distances, so my ass needed a break every now again, but with no fuckers in sight, time to get back on the move.
I had taken to calling the infected, fuckers. What else was I supposed to call them? Zombies. Fuckers were more appropriate. Zombies were fiction, from television or books. My friends and I used to discuss for hours what would happen if a zombie apocalypse hit. We hadn’t known shit. We had been such idiots. Now they were all dead and I was barely alive. So, they were fuckers. Started out as dead fuckers, but that’s too long. So fuckers it is. Not that I would offend anyone with my foul-mouthed tendencies. I hadn’t seen a person in sixty-two days and it hadn’t been a person I wanted to get to know better.
The breathers were sometimes a lot worse than the dead. The breathers pointed guns at you and tried to steal your bike and your food.
And I had considered myself anti-social before the end of the world. Who was I kidding?
I chuckled out loud. I was prone to talking to myself since I was my own company.
Something glinted off in the distance. A highway sign that was still standing. The cracked blacktop road I had been racing down for the last week was now merging onto a raised causeway. The area around me had gone from pine forest to swampy without me noticing. I tried to remember what highway I was on so I could place myself. Many of the highway signs were missing or in disrepair. Some asshole had painted ‘This is The End’ on a lot of the ones in this area, covering up the words beneath. I had no idea where I was.
I slowed as I neared the big green highway sign, still in pristine condition. It read:
New Orleans 30
I had always wanted to go to New Orleans.
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The Itch by Gillian Zane
The itching began about a month ago. A terrible itch that burned and bothered the girl from sun up to sunset. At first, it was just a light itch, she scratched at it haphazardly, leaving bright red marks on her skin. People asked if she had an allergy, she was unaccustomed to allergies, so she shrugged and itched more.read more
It’s been awhile. I have nothing but long and drawn out excuses that you don’t want to hear. They involve a wasp infestation, the fact that I can’t say no…and the genius idea of turning rentals into AirBnB’s but doing all the work myself. But, I made it. And I’m writing again. I even have a release schedule. What? Yup. And I thought my “back on the horse” flash fiction, would take place in the world of Karma Inc. which is my current series.
This is an unedited Karma Inc. short. All content © 2017 by Gillian Zane.read more
For Apocalypse month our Flash Tales will not be so random. This month’s flash tales will be tales of the apocalypse – and today’s tale is set in the NOLA Zombie world. This is not a character that was in the NOLA Zombie books – he’s new. Enjoy.read more
We are trying something new on the PJV, we call it Flash Tales. It’s Flash Fiction, with a random writing prompt. Joss and I will be doing this, and we would love to have you guys join in. Or just read our stuff and let us know what you think. What we are doing is generating a random idea prompt, using the site Short Story Ideas. Then we’ll write a 1K to 2K tale based off of the idea generated.
Here is what the Short Story Idea generated for me:
A convenience store is the location, angst is the theme. A pack of cigarettes is an object that plays a part in the story.read more