(My entry for the Zombie Luv Flash Fic Contest at Mari’s Randomities)
Snakeskin clouds slipped through a dark, navy sky the night he found her. Drunk on a zombie rage, she was bashing up the hood of a lemon yellow Chevy Impala with a sledgehammer, determination ripe from the seeping holes in her middle. He jumped on the roof, eager to assist. His face drooped like rotten pumpkins, freckles of blood mottled his ashen skin, and one of his eyes crossed into the busted bridge of his nose—he not only looked hideous, but damn crazy too, and after one night of clawing through fresh graves together, they said, I do, beneath a mead moon.
Months later, a chill frosted over their marriage, as routines numbed their merriment and the resurrection of children blighted their intimacy. The constant watch over the little Wilsons aligned Chips eyes, firmed her gluteus into a repulsive heart, and the graveyard never looked tidier with baby zombies devouring every littered bone and rotten corpse about—the horror kept her up at daylight. Chip said he still loved her, but he hadn’t brought her road kill for many moons.
One dawn, as they climbed into an old trench near their brood’s crypt, she reminisced of the past. “Remember when we used to eat each other for nights and smash up the cars of filthy crooks?”
His semi-toothless grin gleamed and a moon the shade of metal reflected off his foggy eyes. “How could I forget?” He grabbed her broken arm and kissed the sharp, jutted tip. “But we’re zombies now; we have responsibilities.”
She rolled over in the soft mud. “Burning Man is in two days. We’ve missed the last three.” Every year, humans held a celebration of death, burning something they need to part with, in the Black Rock Desert, where the strange sometimes became the dead if a zombie got lucky.
“And take the children?” He replied. “C’mon, Helen, how ‘bout we go to the circus instead?”
Easy was never any fun to her, but she agreed anyway.
After moaning himself to sleep, she shuffled into the day, a time quickly becoming her favorite. There were plenty of places to blend in, along the train tracks, beneath underpasses, many bars, and most post offices. Still, she always found herself back at the Schmidt brothers’ trailer, where she never tired of scaring them—peeling the skin off her face, or eating her fingers one by one. Today, the one that shot her came hollering out of the house chasing after her, draped in garlic and crosses, and clutching a wooden stake above his head. She managed to lose him at the bus station down the street and then walked back to the cemetery where sleep finally caught up with her in the cellar of the morgue, a cozy, empty, metal vat. Hours later, she woke with a panic at the creaking of the door. The Schmidt brothers? She crouched down, baring her nastiest face in the anticipation to fight and feed, wondering if she could take them both on.
A tattered boot stepped inside the doorway and she straightened in recognition. Chip popped out from behind the door holding a brown paper sack and a frying pan. Behind him, her three little zombies appeared, fists clenched around the tails of tire-flattened squirrels with intestines dangling like twisted, frosted dough.
“You brought me road kill,” she said, delightedly.
“And your blue dress,” Baby Billy said, “—the one with bullet holes in it.”
Her brow furrowed. She looked to Chip. “But I hate that dress.”
He chuckled, a blissful, gruff cough. “I know; it’s perfect!”
A dirty hand patted at his leg. “Now Dad?” Sweet Rosemary asked, looking up at her zombie father.
“You betcha, darling.”
Helen looked on, quite confused. Chip handed Sweet Rosemary the frying pan. Even though she was missing a couple of fingers, she could still grasp the handle well enough. Chip lowered himself, braced his hands on his knees, and scrunched his disfigured face tight. Then Sweet Rosemary swayed back and walloped the side of his head with the bottom of the pan. It cracked with a sickening thud. Little Chuck and Baby Billy grimaced.
“Oh my devil!” Helen gasped. Chip wobbled in circles before falling on his bum. “Sweet Rosemary Wilson! What have I told you about trying to kill your father?”
Chip looked up at Helen. “It’s okay dear. Look.” He pointed to his eyes. They were both crossed.
Her smile widened so far, her lip split open. “Honey, you look awful!”
He extended his ragged hand to hers and she pulled him up. “I can’t go to the Black Rock Desert without looking a little bit crazy.” He picked up the bag and handed it to her. “I know where you go during the day, Helen. You need this—to celebrate a death.”
Had her heart still beat, it would have skipped then. She jumped into his arms and kissed him, then bit off part of his ear. “I’m going to eat you all night, Chip Wilson.”
“Gross!” Little Chuck groaned. “Can we go now?”
That night, Helen looked up at another dark, navy sky—not one cloud slipped by. She finally had the thought again, that dawn would come too soon.
2010 © Erin Cole
Word count: maximum 1.000
The story must be a romance between two zombies. Make it as horrific as you like. ;)
Stories containing animal cruelty, torture, graphic sex or violence, any form of exaltation of violence, racism or other forms of prejudice will be immediately disqualified.
Post your entry on your own blog, with a title resembling this: Zombie Luv Flash Fic Contest: Story Title
Leave your story title and a link to the story entry post as a comment at mari’s randomities: http://marisrandomities.blogspot.com. Copy and paste the contest logo and the guidelines at the end of your entry post.