Authors: Lee Pletzers
Tags: #rage, #zombie action, #new world, #new zombie, #rage virus, #zombie book, #zombie apocalpyse, #immunity
Copyright 2012 Lee Pletzers
Published by Triskaideka Books
All rights reserved. No copying or reselling.
This eBook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This eBook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient.
This tale was written tweet by tweet from October 28
until Feb 10
. It was intended to be a flash-fiction piece penned (tweeted) only for the Twitterverse. Nothing was prewritten and though I didn’t intend to write a zombie story, they just kind-of popped up on the screen. The characters demanded a formable challenge, so I kept the zombies, added loss, pain, a crazy scientist with a pet zombie and a character driven by…rage—an emotion so powerful it takes full control of him.
Discover more by Lee Pletzers at
Twitter ID: @threeand10
It happened suddenly. Hell filled up, and the dead spewed onto the streets. Sewer lids shot into the air. Subway gates collapsed under the weight. Burglar alarms screamed. Car alarms copied. Seventy percent of the world died that night.
Sally and I survived. Sometimes I wish we hadn’t. Skyler didn’t. She was only three. I used to think I was a kind, loving guy, able to take a punch easily but unable to deliver one. I was just an average Joe who worked with computers. But since that night three months ago...only rage filled my heart now. That rage has served me well at times. I’ve crushed heads with nothing but leather-gloved hands. Workman gloves. My father’s old, worn, leather, construction gloves.
It took a month to move out of our home. Sometimes, like this cold, rainy night, I wondered if it was the right choice. Right or wrong, it didn’t matter. We had to focus on the here and now.
John, there’s a house up ahead.”
It was hard to see, but Sally had better eyes than I did. It took me a few moments to locate the dark form in the night. It took the shape of Southern Homesteads you see in the old black and white movies. It was large. We moved slowly closer. Overly cautious of our movements, we listened intently for any sounds.
The night was silent. Still. No frogs croaked, no insects buzzed. Putting a hand on Sally’s shoulder, I halted her. Something was not right. Somewhere close a twig snapped. We squatted down, backs against a large tree. Doing our best to hide. We were both armed but short on ammo. I put on my gloves. Sally gave me that worried look she only used when the gloves go on. Positioning the glove over my bandaged hand proved painful, but I wasn’t facing the undead with only one hand protected.
Behind us, I heard shuffling on the moist forest floor. The sound came closer with each rapid jack-hammering heartbeat. I swallowed a lump stuck in my throat. Sally gave my hand a squeeze. She had her .38 at the ready. Shaking my head, I indicated ‘only one’. It must have staggered away from the group. One was one too many. They usually travel in packs. It was a numbers game. In groups, they kept coming and coming. Sooner or later, they win. But not today. No way. This fucker was going down and it wasn’t getting up.
I nodded to Sally. The thing was almost upon us. Jumping to my feet, adrenaline coursing through my veins, I leapt from behind the tree, fists raised and came face to face with a Glock. Momentarily stunned, I dropped my fists. People. Real, live, breathing people. We hadn’t seen anyone normal in days except those crazy fuckers in the 4X4.
Pain, sudden and overwhelming, ripped through my head and neck. I dropped to the ground. There were two men now. One held a police truncheon and grinned as my vision blurred. These were not nice guys. As darkness slowly took hold of me I hoped they hadn’t found Sally.
I woke up with a splitting headache in a dark room. The hard wood floor was cold against my back and a groan escaped as I rolled onto my stomach and then onto my hands and knees. Somewhere in the dark room, someone else groaned. It wasn’t Sally. This was a deep, primal groan of pain and possibly hunger. I was on my feet quickly. A wave of dizziness washed over me but I stayed on my feet and attempted to will my eyes to adjust to the darkness. It didn’t seem to be working. I could hear raspy breathing coming from my left. With it so dark, I didn’t want to move a single step.
Chains rattled, feet scraped across the wooden floor in my direction. Still I did not move. The chains stopped and an incredible stench seemed to soak through my skin. Inches away I could make out the vague shape of a deformed skull. Dark shades of gray wriggled and danced off cheekbones and chin. Even in the blackness of this room, I knew it could only be skin—rotted and peeling.
My breath caught and my bladder released a fear induced tiny squirt. I’ve been up close and personal with them and they still scare the piss out of me.
Why the fuck would someone chain one in their house? That takes balls and/or, stupidity. I took a couple of steps back in case one of those chains slipped. I didn’t know what was behind me, so two steps were enough.
The dizziness was a distant memory. All my senses were on high alert. Fear of something lurking behind me kept me glued to the spot. The only sound, apart from my heart beating a drum behind my ears, were the strained sounds of the zombie’s raspy breath and its strained grunts as it battled the chains keeping it from me. It must be in a frenzy knowing fresh warm meat was so close yet so unattainable.
The chains were holding well and after a few minutes, it stopped yanking at its bindings and I too relaxed a little. I was alert for any sounds from behind but I was certain there was nothing there. I sat down on the spot, not tempting fate by going backwards.
In the silence my thoughts went to Sally. Was she safe? Did she slip past these two crazy fucks that captured me and possibly this zombie? I prayed to God, begging Him to keep her safe. Blocking any negative thoughts out, my fucked up memory brought Skyler. My beautiful, sweet, little, innocent Skyler. The joy of our life. The product of our happiness and our love. Her beautiful smile, her laughter, her screams for me to help as my father tore her throat open and feasted. The sounds of her screams and his gulping and slurping will haunt me the rest of my days.
Sally’s screaming. I’m screaming. Skyler’s quiet. It was like a nightmare, only I knew I was awake. I don’t remember grabbing my father but I remember throwing him to the floor and scooping my little girl off the bed. Dad stood up and his eyes were red and bloodshot. His once rosy cheeks were pale and gray veins throbbed across his cheeks. This was no longer the man I knew and trusted.
My little girl was limp in my arms. Half her throat was gone. There wasn’t a lot of blood, but the way her head hung...she was no more. Sally had fallen into a heap on the floor. She didn’t notice Dad shuffling towards her. My attention was on Skyler. From the corner of my eye, I noticed movement and kicked out with all the strength and anger I could muster. My foot slammed Dad’s hip, sending him sprawling.
He got up fast. Skyler groaned. “Sweetie?” I looked at her. My baby girl had lips curled back exposing her small baby teeth. Her eyes were red and tiny veins tattooed her face. She was trying to raise her head. The tiny body thrashed in my arms but I held her tight.
Sally was on her back doing her best to fight off Dad. She pushed his head back, keeping it away while at the same time using her knees as a wedge against his stomach, stopping his body from advancing or collapsing on her. “John! For fuck’s sake!”
I dropped Skyler, ignoring the sound of her little body hitting the floor. She wasn’t my little girl any longer, Dad had seen to that. A new emotion pumped up from the darkness deep inside me. I grabbed the old bastard around the head and chin. Yanked hard and to the left in a rising arch, his neck snapped easily.
I pulled him off my wife.
Wait here,” I told her and turned on my heel and, with anger boiling my blood, I entered our bedroom. In the wardrobe, I found the .38 and a box of shells. I didn’t know what had happened to my family. I was thinking...no. No. I wasn’t thinking at all. I was on auto-pilot, running on fear and hate. All I wanted to do was put a bullet into that fucker’s head. Make him go down for good. Entering Skyler’s room, I did just that.
And it felt so damn good.
I turned to Skyler.
Don’t you fucking dare!” Sally was on her feet. Her hands were balled onto fists. I took aim. She ran at me, got between the gun and my target. Her fists hurt with each strike against my chest. I didn’t stop her. Skyler groaned. Sally turned to look at her. I think I heard her heart break at that awful sound. With a shaky hand and sobbing tears of loss only a mother can feel, she took the .38 from me and knelt down close to Skyler. She whispered, “I’m sorry,” and placed the barrel against her little forehead. A piece of Sally died the moment she squeezed the trigger. A piece of me died when I dropped my baby on the floor. It was a hole within us that we filled with revenge, anger and hate, sated only when we dispersed with these undead fuckers, which had somehow gotten to my father.
Flickering harsh white light exploded through the room as fluorescents stuttered to life. The sudden brightness momentarily blinded me. I stumbled backward, using my arms to cover my eyes. I backed into a wall. Thank God, nothing hideous waited there.
My eyes adjusted quickly. I was in a white room with splashes of red on the walls and floor. It didn’t look like paint. The zombie was squatting down against the wall, its arms looked relaxed bound in chains. Only the arms were restrained. I wondered how hungry it would get before realizing a little lost skin and it’d be free and could feed. I hoped I was out of the room before that happened. It was staring at me the way I stared at a sizzling steak. It was very unsettling. I had been right about the shades of gray on its face being skin. Most of the skin was a greenish gray, covered with open sores leaking puss, skin sagging, and the stench of decay hung around it like an aura. But the red eyes were vibrant and alive.
There was no intelligence in those eyes, just resignation knowing it couldn’t reach me.
A door to my right opened and a heavyset man in jeans entered. He carried a bowl filled with meat, dripping blood. Not once did he glance in my direction.