1. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Winners Short Story Contest (19) Zombies

    Discussion in 'Bi-Weekly Short Story Contest Archives' started by Gannon, Mar 5, 2008.

    Well done to all who entered. Sadly there was no outright winner with a three way tie but I think that speaks for the quality of the entries - unseperable to the very end.
     
  2. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    ValianceInEnd - The Bastards' Din

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    The Bastards' Din-[1764 words]

    He screamed, he goddamn screamed at the top of his lungs. They were supposed to be quiet and slow just like they way it always was in the movies. Yet he howled and banged on everything in the bathroom creating such a din that Rob couldn’t ever sleep. Raising his tired, blood-shot eyes Rob clumsily blinked as he stared down the hall where the bathroom was. The bathroom door continued to shake the whole house as Max slammed on the thing with all his might.

    It wasn’t just Max though, for a whole gang of the noisy bastards were constantly hanging around his home. They would scream and yell until blood dripped from their mouths from over using their throats. In vain, the mob would smash at the door, not able to break through the heavy wood. Hands bashed on the windows, and Rob had the sense enough to put down the blinds so he didn’t have to look at them.

    Rob slouched solemnly in his reclining chair fiddling around with a revolver in his hands. It was a Colt .45 revolver his father had given him before he passed away. Never having been accustomed to guns, Rob barely ever used it and only kept it around for a sense of security. Once he had taken it to the range, just to try it out. Surrounded by regular attendees, Rob fired one bullet, found he couldn’t hit the damn target if his life depended on it, and quickly fled the building. That had been only one year ago; one year ago when everything was normal. He wondered silently to himself if the range was still there.

    He had contemplated placing the revolver to his temple, saying his final prayer, and letting the gun take care of all his problems. Rob had even gone so far as to have that barrel aimed right at his head, but couldn’t find it in him to pull the trigger. Some natural feeling of hope resided in him, telling him that everything was going to be all right and somebody would be there to help him. This simple hope was what kept that finger from making the simple motion of flexing back.

    It had all been chaos at first. He was sitting at home lounging in the same chair he was now watching television. Mary and Katlyn were gone for the week on a school field trip to Lake Bullstin. Max was out biking with his friends and Rob didn’t expect him to be back for another hour or so. He was surprised when the front door opened and Max came inside nursing his arm. At first Rob thought that Max had just fallen and sustained a simple injury that comes along with biking, but he was even more surprised to see how much more serious it was. Max’s arm was completely red, blood pumping from a dark wound on his forearm. Quickly Rob dashed Max to the sink and began to wash it out under the cool, running water. As the blood washed away, Rob could see that the wound was shaped differently from a scrape or road burn. It almost seemed as if it was a bite mark, so Rob asked if Max had been bitten by a dog.

    Somehow, Rob managed to get Max in the bathroom and block the door without being bitten or scratched. He couldn’t really remember much before Max had suddenly gone mad, but he knew that Max was in there and he was out in the living room. He did remember though running out in the street to ask someone for help, wanting desperately to know what the hell was going on with his child. He needed somebody’s support and he didn’t care who. A man down the road whipped around and focused on him. Before long Rob himself running for his life as the other man sprinted with untiring speed after him. Dashing back inside, Rob fumbled about to pull the chain on his door, managing to slide it in just as the madman collided with the front door.

    He just about lost it when that happened. Collapsing to the floor, Rob broke into a frenzy of screams and tears. He didn’t know what was wrong and why he was so scared, but he knew that something terrible was happening. Something inside him told him that he’d never see Mary or Katlyn again and that Max was never going to be all right. No matter what he did, this situation was not going to have a happy ending. Somehow he knew that much.

    That night, Rob just sat in his bed listening to the chaos unfold outside. Gunshots, screams, explosions, it was all there. Everything you expected when the world would end was happening right outside his home. Max continuously smashed the bathroom door, trying with inhuman fury to bust out. The man who had chased him did the same with his front door, colliding over and over wanting to get in for no other reason then to get at Rob.

    After about the first week, when Rob had come to terms with the situation, he started to get this feeling of hope. He began to come up with stories of being rescued and how happy he would be when the nightmare was over. The dreams were ludicrous enough to even think that maybe his son could be cured and brought back to normal. Always pacing, Rob impatiently waited for this rescue. Every part of his body wanted to be freed, so he did the best he could to “wait-it-out” as they say you should do.

    After about four weeks, Rob began to decline from this state and started to sleep less and think less. His eyes started to study the revolver more and more tenderly, always wondering if that would be his best option out. Yet that feeling of hope continued to keep him alert and his mind off such desires. Unfortunately, time quickly takes its toll and Rob found himself on his ass in the recliner, never getting up except to take a piss.

    The screams were wearing away at his sanity, and he found himself easily irritated and overcome with anger about the smallest details. If there had been any alcohol, he might have been able to get himself drunk so he’d forget about everything for awhile. His ipod had run out of batteries, and there was no power to recharge it. Without power, the tv and computer didn’t work. He wasn’t a big reader so there were very few books other than the dictionary to stay occupied with. Nothing was available and so he was forced to listen to nothing but the howls of the monsters.

    Max had periods where he would have over used his muscles and wouldn’t be quite so loud. Still, there were also times when he was louder than some of the ones outside. Just about right then, Max had entered one of those phases and was really bashing the door in. With every thump, he winced as if Max was smashing away at his head rather than the door. Rob glared hatefully down the hall, forgetting that it was his own son in there. He looked down at the revolver and suddenly something clicked in his head.

    Rising from the chair, he firmly placed the revolver in his hand and walked with an air of authority towards the hallway. He stopped, as if to truly think over what he was doing, but shook it off and continued at the same pace down the hall. Rob stood in front of the door, watching it bounce back and forth. He imagined Max inside, furiously smashing at the door for no reason other than to get out and get to Rob. Taking in a deep breath, Rob pushed aside the dresser in front of the door. The slamming on the door became more violent as if Max knew that there was now nothing but an inch and a half of wood between him and Rob. Slowly reaching out for the knob, he felt his hand grip the cold metal.

    As fast as he could, Rob turned the knob and threw open the door. He flicked up the revolver and looked down the barrel directly into his son’s eyes. His finger itched at the trigger, ready to fire its death bringing pulse. But, Rob found that he couldn’t do it, just like pulling the trigger for himself. It would almost be like shooting himself if he shot Max. Standing there, Rob stared in horror at his son who drooled and bared his teeth in a snarl. Lunging out from the dark bathroom, Max fell on his father and sank his front teeth directly into Rob’s stomach.

    Rob hit the floor with a dull thud and felt Max tear away at his body with his nails and teeth. No, those weren’t nails but now they were claws, those were't teeth but now they were fangs. Reaching for the gun which had fallen from his hands, he raised it up and pressed it against Max’s head. His finger finally found the strength to pull back on that trigger and the weapon expelled a thick piece of lead directly through the boy’s skull. Blood and brains spattered the door and rained upon the tile. Shoving Max off of him he got to his feet and clasped his wounded stomach. Looking down he saw what seemed to be a helpless boy lying in a pool of crimson.

    Dropping to his knees, Rob burst into tears realizing that he had just shot his own son. Forgetting the pain of his open stomach, Rob picked up the corpse and cradled it in his arms. He put his face in the child’s chest and sobbed uncontrollably. Tenderly holding the tiny body, he laid it on the floor. Rob couldn’t imagine that such a frail young boy could have been such a savage only a minute before.

    Wiping the tears from his eyes and gaining control of himself he leaned back against the wall. His eyes looked away from the corpse to the revolver lying so innocently on the floor. Reaching over for it, he lifted up the gun and held it heavily in his hands. He raised it up to eye-level and looked at it a way he hadn’t before, finding his finger to regain its strength. Placing it to his head, his finger flexed back just one more time and Rob found the most peaceful sleep he had ever experienced.
     
  3. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Forkfoot - Twenty-Four Hours in the Life of King Fifty

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    Twenty-Four Hours in the Life of King Fifty
    [2,175 words]

    I sit up the instant I wake up, as I do every morning when the first ray of sun makes contact with My face. A split second later and I’m out of the covers and standing, though still on the bed. I jump on My bed seven times and do a triple backflip (I have very high ceilings) and land on My feet. Then out the door to the balcony! I leap up and stand on the railing, balancing there as I survey My domain far, far below.

    I extend My mighty arm out in front and to the side, curling My magnificent fingers inward. I point My royal thumb toward Myself and thrust it into My sacred chest, which I am puffing out as far as it will go. I then re-extend My mighty arm as far as it will go and repeat this motion thirty-nine times, making forty. I do this so that all My subjects can behold Me and talk amongst themselves about how awesome I am.

    I beat My chest and roar like a pelican, then step down from the railing and take the elevator down to the ground floor. It takes half an hour to get there because My house is the Tallest building in the world. Before heading to my banquet hall for My royal breakfast feast I go and open My front door, where I find Chowlie asleep, curled up in a ball under a pile of straw. No one else will let him sleep on their doorstep, because he is old and stinky and has tarantulas in his beard, but I in My infinite compassion allow him to sleep here as long as he leaves the moment I command him to. And so I say unto him:

    ME: Chowlie. Chowlie, get up, Chowlie. You can’t stay here, Chowlie.

    Chowlie groans and stirs a bit but does not get up. I go back inside and carry out a machine I invented to hurt Chowlie. It’s custom-designed to cause Chowlie, specifically, the maximum amount of hurting possible in all the exact places that he, personally, least likes to be hurt. He gets hurt and runs away, and I go back inside to eat. My peen poin Walter dragon meets Me at the door.

    “Good morning, Your royal Tallness,” he says unto Me, “You are smart, strong, and interesting, and You are very, very Tall. And I am just a lowly peen poin Walter dragon who is stupid and gay.”
    ME: Ah, yes, it is true, I am indeed extremely Tall.
    “I have had the robots prepare Your royal breakfast, my liege. It is a tremendous feast of roast wizard, quail cabbage, and grape on the cob, with mead and Snapple™ to drink.”
    ME: Ah, good, I love quail cabbage. Throw the rest of it into the garbage and bring Me only that, please, with a bowl of candy and soda pop. I’ll take it in the play room.
    “Yes, Your Tallness.”
    ME: O, and go hose down the front porch. I had to hurt Chowlie again, and I’m expecting company.

    I turn and enter the play room, where I have crucified three zombies.

    “Good morning, Your royal Tallness,” they say in unison unto Me, “You are smart, strong, and interesting, and You are very, very Tall. And we are just three lowly zombies who stupid and gay.”
    ME: Ah, yes, it is true, I am indeed extremely Tall. You smell especially horrid today.

    I pull up a chair to the billiards table which I have set up directly in front of their crosses and stare at them in silence as I wait for My food.

    “Umm… Your Tallness?” one of them dares to interrupt My musings.
    ME: I… am… THINKING!!!
    “Sorry.”
    I let some time elapse.
    ME: Okay. I’m done now. What was it you wanted to ask Me?
    “Umm… well, we were just wondering, umm, that is to say, we were wondering if You were-”
    ME: Ah, here it is!
    I take the food from My peen poin Walter dragon and set it on the billiards table in front of Me.
    ME: I love, love, love quail cabbage! Oh, how I do! Now, where were We?
    “Umm… uh… we, uh, we wanted to know, umm-”
    ME: You may go now, slave.
    My peen poin Walter dragon leaves and closes the door behind him.
    “Uh… we were just wondering, Your Tallness, if today You were going to do like You said and… uh… You know?
    ME: Hmm… No. No, I am afraid that I do not.
    “You said that today You were going to chop off our heads!” blurts out another of the zombies. He then shrinks back in horror.
    ME: O?
    “Err, yes,” says the third. “You said that on Friday You were going to chop off our heads so that we could die. Today is Friday.”
    I stare at him, expressionless.
    “You… You said that You would. You promised.”
    I take a large piece of quail cabbage and stand up. I climb on top of the table and walk over to that last zombie, until I am inches away from it. I take a large bite of the quail cabbage, ripping it hard with my teeth and hands. I chew. Standing on tip-toe and touching My nose to where its nose used to be, I say this unto him:
    ME: Did I now?
    It draws its head back, terrified of My majestic, towering frame, and swallows.
    “Yes… yes, You did.”
    I pause and breath on him for a minute or two, then turn and leap down from the table.
    ME: Aha! Ahahahaha! Well, why didn’t you just say so? Come on now, zombies, I can’t be guessing at everything that’s going on in your tiny little minds now, can I? How am I supposed to know what you’re thinking unless you just come out with it from the beginning?
    They do not dare respond.
    ME: However, I’m not so sure I remember saying that at all. Are you certain that this conversation even took place?
    “Err, yes, yes we are. It was six days ago, remember? It was the day before You dressed us up like women, and the day after You dressed us as the Three Stooges.
    ME: O? And what did I dress you as on that day?
    “Umm… you didn’t. You pretty much just tortured us all day.”
    ME: A! Aha! Yes, now I remember! Yes, I do remember saying that to you now! But, tell Me, friends, what in the world makes you think that it’s Friday? How would you, in the state that you’re in, have any way of knowing what day it is? Or even how many days there are in a week, for that matter? You are, after all, only zombies. I have taught you speech and elocution over the years, and I have taught you to sing, but I never taught you that.
    “Well we- we overheard You talking to the peen poin Walter dragon four days ago. It had left the door slightly ajar that day and-
    ME: O?
    “Uh, yes. And- and we heard You telling it to clear Your schedule for the next four days, through Friday. Then, after that, we just looked out the window and counted the sunsets.”
    ME: I see. Hmm… Well, King Fifty has always been a man of His word, that is certain and true. Of that there can be no doubt whatsoever. But I wonder-
    My peen poin Walter dragon interrupts me.
    “Your Tallness, Father William is here to see You.”
    ME: Send him off. I can’t be bothered right now. Then come back here when you are done and I’ll let you eat some of My table scraps.
    It scuttles off, and I begin My meal.
    ME: Alright, so I gave you My word that today I will chop off your heads. So I have promised, and so it shall be. But zombies, there are still many hours left in the day. I think we have time for just one more song, don’t you?
    The zombies look at one another and smile and laugh, and noises of gratitude and praise erupt from their throats.
    “Right away, Your Tallness!” they exclaim.
    My peen poin Walter dragon comes in.
    ME: A, you’re just in time! My zombies are about to sing for us.
    It curls up at my feet, and I feed it candy and quail cabbage under the table as My zombies begin their song.

    I can’t tell you how badly I wish you could hear My zombies sing. Their voices are so beautiful it brings Me to tears every single time. I have a baritone, a tenor, and a soprano. I will include here some of the words of the song that they sing, but you need to picture them singing it slowly, in the most beautiful three-part harmony you‘ve ever heard, okay? Oh, and they also snap their fingers, so picture that, too. Okay? Okay, here it is then:

    O, we three zombies pirates be,
    And cyborg-ninjas, too
    We’ve wrote a song so heavenly
    That we shall sing for You

    There was a lass from Aberdeen
    A bonny lass indeed
    With eyes so pure, and hair so clean
    It made our eyes to bleed

    Her skin it was as woven thread
    Her farts they smelled like roses
    She wore a mink that wasn’t dead
    And diamonds on her toeses

    When she would sing we’d all fall prone
    So much her voice did ravish us
    And she could play the saxophone
    Like a goddamn magicus

    “O, lady, please” we’d all implore,
    “Give us thy queenly hand
    That to we zombies may restore
    Our honor ‘cross the land!”

    As My zombies continue with their song I look down upon My peen poin Walter dragon, who has fallen asleep listening to their beautiful, beautiful voices. I watch it snore contentedly, its belly full of My candy, then place the heel of My boot on its head and crush its skull. I sit back and stare at its body as it twists and squirms, then finally lies still. It would have to have been four billion years old, at least. No bother; I’ll just get a new one. My zombies have stopped singing.

    ME: I didn’t say stop.
    They just stare.
    ME: Hey, don’t stop singing. Keep singing.
    They just stare at Me stupidly with their stupid, disgusting faces, blinking their stupid, disgusting eyes.
    ME: Keep singing I said!
    I hate them so much right now.
    ME: That’s it!

    I get up and go to get the machine I invented for hurting My zombies. I don’t carry this one, because it’s much to big and dangerous to be carried. It needs to be wheeled out on a large motorized cart I designed for just such a purpose. The reason it’s so big is first of all that there are three of them and I like to be able to hurt them all equally, at the same time, and secondly because you can hurt a zombie much worse without killing it than you can a human being like Chowlie, so more firepower is required. This is the main reason I love zombies so much. They can feel pain just as much as you or I, but they won’t die no matter what you do to them unless you chop off their heads. Sometimes I’ll go all day, and stay up all night, too, just hurting them and hurting them and hurting them. It’s lotsa fun.

    I let them have it. I let them have it worse than I ever have before, with everything I’ve got, using options on My machine that I’d never before employed upon them in My infinite compassion. And they scream, my God, do they scream. They scream such beautiful screams, I can’t tell you how much I wish you could hear them. They scream and they scream, and they beg for mercy, beg Me to chop of their heads, but every time I take a short break to catch My breath or rest My arms, they still refuse to finish their song. I let them have it all day long, and up until sunrise the next day, forcing Myself to keep going even though I am so very tired and My arms are so very sore from working the machine so much. Finally I can go no more, falling into My chair and panting and sweating. When I have finally caught My breath I say this unto them:

    ME: Well?

    Nothing. They stare at Me with their mangled eyes, their mangled faces completely expressionless. I get up and leave them there in their mangledness in complete disgust and close the door behind Me. I shan’t cut off their heads today.

    I pour Myself a glass of mead, tell the robots to fix Me a quick feast, and turn on My gigantic television. I sit down and have a nice, full-bellied laugh.

    ME: Ahahahahahaha! O, Urkel, you are a character!
     
  4. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Domoviye - Alex

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    Alex (1025 words)


    Lying in the warm bed I realize I can't really feel my arm anymore. Just a tingling sensation from my elbow down. Its not painful, just a little annoying. I wiggle my fingers trying to regain some feeling. Little bolts of pain run along my arm as the muscles deprived of blood contract and release. Gently and ever so slowly I move my forearm up and down. My upper arm barely moves.

    A murmer of complaint comes from the woman clutching me. Her right hand clutches at my chest. The nails dig almost painfully into my skin. The left hand tightens it hold on my arm. She twists her head on my arm and forces it further into the soft mattress. As I stop moving a contented sigh leaves her sweet lips, and her hands release my flesh.

    I lower my arm, it can stay numb. If Alex wants to use it as a pillow she can. I don't want to disturb the angel sleeping beside me.

    The dim light of the moon is enough to let me see her face. As she sleeps, the first real sleep either of us has had in a week, I watch her. The faint light covers up the few blemishes of her skin. Not that I ever really noticed them. They say that true love lets you see the beauty in all things. It may be true. I wouldn't know, there is nothing ugly about the girl beside me.

    I smell her light brown hair, we were lucky and found some running water today. After a long shower her hair smells like roses again. I run my hand through the silky, still damp strands. It's what made me first fall in love with Alex. Seeing the long, waist length hair waving in the wind, I just had to say hello. Talking was easy, we liked the same things, watched the same movies, and you didn't laugh when I asked so shyly on the fifth date if I could run my hands through your hair. It smelled like roses then to.

    Bending my head I kiss her little crooked nose. Alex was always so ashamed that her nose leaned a little to the left. Now I'm sorry that I laughed about it so many times. I know she thinks it's ugly, but I always saw it as a vital part of her. It matched her personality. Alex always dreamed of impossible things, seeing the world just a little differently than everyone else. The little crooked nose made her different, it made her unique, just like her dreams.

    My free hand closes on her right hand. Alex's small hand grasps mine as if her life depended on it. It seems so small compared to mine. One of my fingers makes up almost two of hers. It still amazes me that she can look so tiny. Our friends used to call us Little John and Thumbelina. But when she's awake she never seems tiny to me. The intensity of her personality, the way she moves forward showing no fear no matter the situation, it makes her look larger than life. I know thats a stupid phrase, but she is. It's only when she is sleeping that she looks tiny. It's only when she's sleeping that she lets any fear she might have felt actually show. She is strong for the both of us during the day. I'm strong for her during the night.

    This last week has been hard. We've both been scared. We have pulled every bit of courage we could from each other. Just trying to survive. Running scared, fleeing the dead in our beat up old car, watching our friends die. We watched our friends die. Watched a world die. Now we are here.

    The car broke down finally. The two of us walked till we found a farmhouse. Every second we worried the dead things would find us. On foot they would catch us. We wouldn't stand a chance. The farmhouse was a godsend. It didn't have a car, not even a bicycle. But it has running water, canned, pickled, dried, and jarred foods, all the comforts of home.

    It was too good to last. I can hear the dead again. Their moans are coming closer. I heard them while Alex was in the shower. I closed all the windows so she wouldn't know they were coming. We can't run anymore. They don't stop, and we can't keep running.

    But they've found us again. Alex whimpers in her sleep. The cries of the dead terrify her. She hides it during the day, but at night I feel her trembling and crying from the nightmares. The nightmares have finally caught up. We can bar the windows, begin a seige. But food will run out. The dead will keep coming. Their moans won't stop. More and more will come. They'll either break down the doors and eat us slowly as we scream and cry. Or we'll starve to death, becoming skeletons before we finally collapse and die painfully as our bodies waste away.

    I stretch out my arm grabbing the gun from the bedside table. Alex always took control during the day. I was always too shy, to easy going to do what had to be done when people could see me. But at night, when no one else was around, I was the person she turned to. I listened to all her pain and worries, I made them go away. Like day and night, she is the sun the bold, look them straight in the eye, take no prisoners type. But I am the moon I work quietly, giving a bit of advice when needed, acting as the non-judgmental listener in the dark, who does what has to be done.

    I cock the gun, Alex doesn't stir. Leaning down I kiss her lips, awkwardly, tenderly one last time. My hand places the gun to her forehead. She won't feel a thing.

    I'm not sure if I'll join her in Heaven. I hope I will, but even if I don't, I know she won't suffer.

    I pull the trigger.
     
  5. Forkfoot
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    Forkfoot Contributing Member Contributor

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    W0-freakin'-0t.
     
  6. ValianceInEnd
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    ValianceInEnd Active Member

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    Haha, three-way tie. Good job Forkfoot and Domoviye.
     
  7. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    Proud Canadian. Currently teaching in Nanjing, Chi
    Thanks.
    Congratulations to the other winners, and to everyone that entered.
     

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