These short stories were written in 2010 and 2011 on the IF blog as part of a group "Zombie Walk" of posts across a number of blogs.
Anyone makes fun of my awesome video and they get a boot to the head!
Here There Be Zombies (originally posted 12.10.10)
Been feeling a little peckish. So hungry.
I can't believe I ate a double quarter pounder. Haven't eaten meat in almost three years. I just really craved something substantial and it is so easy to hit that drive through. I wanted a nasty, greasy, meaty gut bomb.
That bomb can't be helping me. Probably a bad choice in retrospect, but I felt ravenous and I wasn't thinking clearly. I feel like I'm suffering the worst hangover in history. My skull is on fire. My stomach is having a Jekyll and Hyde identity crisis between revolting nausea and an unabiding hunger.
Peering over grease-stained, diarrhea-colored wax paper, the television glows with the image of a perky, mentally void redhead. She beams at me; speaking through her unwavering smile. Her head moves like a bobblehead doll as she happily transfers words from her teleprompter through her limited-function noggin and out of her pink, shimmery lips. No hyperbolic public health warnings will ever break her stride. She's got her eye on the evening news desk.
They seem to be taking it a step beyond the last world-ending horror. Bird Flu or Swine Flu or whatever the hell deadly thing has us all in its grasp. Oh, how they love to cry wolf. Wolf Flu? That would scare people shitless. Wolves? And Flu? Grandma, what a loud cough you have! The better to infect you, my dear.
Apparently there are local treatment centers to distribute some kind of preventative drug. I have never gotten a flu shot. I don't think I'm in for this either. I stopped paying for health insurance months ago. Being self-employed, something like health insurance falls short of the “necessity” category. I'm not going down to some urban tent city to be jabbed with a dirty needle and be put down on a grungy, flea-ridden cot for a few hours. Recipients are being held to ensure efficacy. That may sound pleasant coming from your Aetna plan-paid doctor. From some overworked nurse tending to the stinking masses, it sounds much more sinister.
I'll sit this one out. That kind of experience is sure to get me something worse than this cold. I've had worse. I don't want it again. I just need to go out and find something to eat...
Pioneers of the Post Apocalypse (originally posted 9.30.11)
Nobody really knows what started it. It all sort of built up. The virus problem snuck itself right in when people couldn't tell a down-and-out Ponzi schemer from a stylish hipster or a viscera encrusted virus carrier.
The Economy crumbled. Mother Nature followed suit. It got so you couldn't tell when one bad weather event ended and another began.
One thing was certain. There was not much left. Infrastructure was obliterated and government was patchy at best. There was no defense that wasn't civil, and it wasn't ever that. But Bureaucracy went on. Bureaucracy always thrives. Somehow. Like the unknown, masked assailants they are. Moving glacially slowly, but somehow always right on your ass.
And so came the Pioneers. Just as always, people were ready to get the fuck back in gear. Sitting around in storm-wrecked mega-domes was losing its shine. The bathroom-stall muggers were having to turn on themselves for kicks.
Yet there was still the problem of the virus carriers. The Medical Whiznicks had figured out a way to arrest the virus' progress. They still weren't sure where it came from or how to get rid of it.
This is where the problems really began. The Bureaucracy had to determine at what level of brain activity did someone retain their humanity. Some early detection patients were impossible to tell from anyone else. Some people saw that as a problem too.
Laws prevented the wholesale slaughter of the infected. They were pushed into camps, but nobody cared to keep track of them. They got feed from dump trucks. It was really an efficient sort of clean up.
While people debated the issue in mahogany chairs, cracked and dusty though they were. Drinking clean water and pondering just how the new problems of the Pioneers might be handled.
Sometimes they had to reconvene. Every solution was not perfect.
The infected liked to move. They didn't take to the camps. There weren't enough people to stop them and, here we are, seven years down the line and there are free rangers roaming middle america.
They roam because they need the moisture. They produce none of their own. During certain times of year, they migrate. That's right. En masse. A bewailing, bleary-eyed herd of killers.
Now, the laws may be tricky, but one thing is certain. A man can defend his self and his own.
And you know he damn well will. Like many a person grown tired of the boy calling wolf year upon year, our hero has lost his fear.
He is tired of the traffic jams out of the Migration Zone. He is tired of wasting gas money he doesn't have to truck on out to some hell hole that isn't home. He's been through two of these Migrations now already. They seem to be getting bigger, but they are not getting any less tame.
Our hero knows the value of holding on to things. A man's home is his castle. An abandoned castle is a thief's dream.
Our hero is going to hold out. I can imagine him now. Waiting out the over-hyped, media-created disaster from his front porch. He's seen this all before. Tempest in a teapot if he ever heard such a thing.
His adventure went a little something like this.....