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Im kind of a zombie, p.1
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       I'm Kind of A Zombie, p.1

           Andrew Legend
 
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I'm Kind of A Zombie
I’m Kind Of A Zombie

  Copyright 2011 Andrew Legend

  XXXXX

  Hi.

  My name is Alex Henry. I’m 20. And I’m a zombie.

  Well, mostly sort of.

  Let me explain.

  FOREWARD

  We’ve been having problems lately. Big problems. The kind of problems that look like human, but mostly dead, and want to chomp on you and turn you either into a meal, or one of them – or sort of both.

  Yes, these problems have been turning up a lot lately. It’s funny: you see campaigns for curing cancer; you see campaigns for curing aids; leukemia, you name it. Now, it’s zombies. Let’s cure zombies.

  “It’s highly contagious”, as described in the news. Well, duh. And contagious by bite. Yes – the person regresses to his primal existence evolution tells us he came from, his brain shuts down and rots away, except for the essential parts. The parts that run him on automatic – like a dumb animal – and tell him that people are yummy.

  People like me.

  Well, a little more than just the brain shutting down. The heart stops – the blood sort of coagulates and its system no longer utilized (can’t bleed a zombie to death…). Every cell of the body sort of mutates into independent yet interdependent cells and is altogether independent of the blood system. The whole body becomes sort of an infection in itself. The “infection” it is can carry on existence only on consuming human flesh. Apparently, per scientists, each cell seems to continue some sort of endless cycle, so the body can never “die”. But the body does sort of waste away, they eyes immediately sink into the socket and are wider, dull, angry, empty; they lose motor control in their mouth (ever heard of a speaking zombie?), apparently lose any sense of physical pain, and lose everything else humane about them. Including any trace of a sentient mind.

  Well, a blow to the head apparently knocks whatever working circuits left in their zombie head out of order, and they collapse. That’s how you deal with it.

  Or run away. Which is pretty much all I used to do, in my two run-for-your-life zombie escape experiences (okay, fine, the zombies were usually a block away and taken down by the local sheriff or something) – and, in the case of my story now, tried to do.

  It’s funny these days, to see highway patrolmen equipped with shotguns and a sort of “bite-proof” clothing, which we colloquially refer to as “zombie armor”. Same with local police, and sometimes the army come and they are bearing zombie armor cameos or olive drab. Only the army has much heavier and much more awesome weaponry.

  And instead of just the weather, traffic, hyped drama and political scams, you hear: weather, traffic, hyped drama, political scams, zombie movement and zombie attacks.

  Well, what gave me chills was warning of dangerous levels of zombie movement toward my little town. A lock down was to go in effect town-wide tomorrow. And I just had this irresistible and idiotic urge to out for a stroll.

  I don’t know what my problem was.

  CHAPTER ONE

  I live in a “what city is that town near?” kind of town – on the map but not.

  I live with my brother and my dad. I have epilepsy; I’ve had it randomly since I was twelve. I stopped going to school when I was 17, after I had an epileptic fit in the middle of the classroom floor, with everyone standing around and staring at me speechless. And I became known as “the retarded kid” there. But that’s the past - now I’m 20. Pretty much at the age where guys look to move out - not looking forward to moving out until the whole zombie thing is under control – and not the “under control” some of the politicians seem to keep stating on TV before/after the “zombie movement” or “zombie attack” segments on TV. But really under control.

  Well, I had a few extra bucks, my no-name brand shoes had the soles worn through and half torn off, to the point they sort of flapped open, and I felt sort of daring. The stupid kind of daring. You know, where you usually chicken out at the last minute, or you do something really stupid. That kind.

  But before that – I was at home; it was about 11AM, in the kitchen, and I was slumped on a chair lazily eating a late breakfast of cereal.

  My dad comes in, sits himself at the table. He looks at me, the same way he looks at me “seriously”, since I was a kid. I’m technically an adult now. But I didn’t make that argument.

  “Hi, dad.”

  “Alex, me and your brother are going out to Tommy’s Hardware to buy up some plywood and two-by-fours. Do you want to come?”

  “No, I’ll hang here.”

  After a thinking lag, he said, “okay…” got up, sort of slowly. Like he was making it obvious he was hesitant to leave me here. “Come on, Eric – you ready?” he called to my brother in the other room.

  “Yeah,” I heard Eric say. Eric was my younger brother, whom I swear was my older brother. Dad treated me like I was 14, and Eric like a co-worker. Or maybe an apprentice or something.

  Not to say, I haven’t exactly accomplished much. I’m a part-part time working slacker. I’m like a couch potato except I hate TV. I can’t watch it for more than a couple hours. An hour is enough usually.

  Oh, and I can’t get a girl friend for the life of me.

  I mean, I’ve tried. Or I’ve tried to try. Just can’t/won’t.

  In other words, I am a dork. You probably don’t follow or like me on any social website. And somehow I’m the protagonist of this story. Go-figure. Be patient with getting to know me.

  Anyways, as dad and Eric went to leave the house, I called after them, “forget all the barricading stuff – just get me a baseball bat and a beer!”

  “Whatever loser,” heard Eric say, in a most-unimpressed-and-most-unamused sort of tone. Dad didn’t say anything. Knew what he was thinking though: “from the mouths of babes…” something he use to utter around me with a smile, then eventually without that smile, then with a frown. Now just silence and walking away. Be silent and walk away – that’s how people in New York respond to crazies on the streets. Not that I’ve been to New York.

  We of course had the news station on in the mini TV we had up on the kitchen counter. Changing the channel was strictly taboo when there was some zombie thing to be concerned about. I watched sort of lazily but with that undying tingle in my body while the text scrolled along the bottom of the screen “ZOMBIE MOVEMENT – THREAT LEVEL HIGH – LOCKDOWN IN EFFECT 8 AM TUESDAY UNTIL 8AM FRIDAY”. Over and over again, for just my town. And in past experience, sometimes the lock down would be extended. Depending on the zombie movements.

  They got some sort of device in the camera that shows colder bodied humanoids on the screen – pretty much like night vision. They seemed to have devised this technology pretty quickly. Necessity made it happen.

  On that same TV screen was video from the helicopter zombie camera hundreds of feet above distant plains and forests not too far from our town showing little glowing blue blobs way below in those plains and forests. Zombies.

  The police or the army (or apparently some of the armed locals sometimes as per the news) have the drill down to intervene, and this drill was commonly referred to as a zombie watch. Usually trying to take down the zombies before getting to the town/city being defended. But a couple times, during lockdown, I’ve definitely heard their commanding voices and deafening artillery on our town streets through our barricaded house’s walls. So, fine, the drill sometimes moves the battleground directly into town. Not ideal, but it happens. In the last such attack only a few weeks ago, some town idiot was outside with his illegally possessed firearm, and he became zombie lunch. Well – to glorify him, I could say zombie bait. The armed officials were able to approach the zombie, whom was too busy
feasting on the dead dude’s disemboweled stomach to notice, and they took the zombie out with an assault rifle.

  Apparently (I didn’t see, only heard about it) the officials checked the zombie victim’s pulse, felt nothing, and immediately put a bullet in his corpse head. So he wouldn’t come back to life a zombie.

  I asked who it was, but I forgot the guy’s name. He didn’t have any kids, thank God. “My daddy was killed by a zombie.” That would just be a sick ending.

  Anyway, back to my kitchen table here.

  As I watched that text continue to scroll across the screen even while the broadcast changed from the airborne zombie camera to commercials, I developed an ungrounded and useless desire to go out and get some shoes to prepare. I glanced at the door that Eric and dad passed through only minutes ago, which they had shut behind them (good habit these days). I looked at my cereal. I looked again at the TV: “ZOMBIE MOVEMENT – THREAT LEVEL HIGH – LOCKDOWN IN EFFECT 8 AM TUESDAY UNTIL 8AM FRIDAY”. I got up, scooting the cheap plastic lawn chair from beneath me, and made my way out that door, crappy shoes and all.

  It was warm outside, but I still made a nervous shiver when I stepped out into that outside air. It’s wide-open, defenseless space that it was. I glanced around. The streets were all empty. Some parked cars. Some people were hammering wood up against windows or otherwise preparing – pretty similar to what some southerners do in hurricane season, actually. I bowed down as I walked along our short driveway to glance under the cars. No zombies. Just checking…

  I took a right and walked on down the street side in the sunlight. I looked at the sun and felt that nice warmth on my face. It was coming down from an angle, still approaching it’s highest point in the sky (directly above) as the time approached noon.

  I walked on alone.

  A couple blocks closer to the mall, a loud clatter to my right made me literally jump. I think my heart stopped.

  I immediately looked toward the clatter with wide eyes. I faced in the direction of the noise.

  It was Red the redneck.

  He was standing by the pile of wood he just dropped in front of his house. He was big, in jeans, and a jean vest from which his two very meaty arms hung out of. And he was looking right back at me with a scowl from beneath his cameo baseball cap. “Dude, what the hell are you doing?” he said, bothered, and in a very uncultured accent. “Don’t you listen to the zombie news, man?”

  “Yeah,” I said, my eyes shrunk back to normal size but I felt my skin to be pale as ever. It felt cold. I breathed again – I had been holding my breath, I just realized. “Yeah, no, yeah – no I got it. I’m going back soon.” My head was pretty scrambled still by the adrenaline. And I did feel stupid for jumping like that.

  He picked up a broad sheet of plywood with his beefy arm, and finally looked away from me, but not before expressing “dumb ass,” to himself but loud enough for me to hear. He went over to the exterior of a window to his house and slapped the plywood up. In his other hand he had a drill gun he brought up against the plywood, aligned the screw that was on it, and with the sharp buzzing sound of the drill he sunk the screw in. I stopped staring at him and moved on, still toward the mall.

  Well, I made it there – the “mall”. You see, the mayor of the town had convinced the town committee and everything to fund a small indoor mall there, hoping to draw in business. They did draw in business, which then went out of business, except for two stores inside the mall. One was a generic-brand clothing store, and one was a shoe store. On top of a strangled economy, these two stores had to deal with zombie lockdowns. Wasn’t too good for business but somehow they managed.

  I went up to it’s dirty double doors. Looking at the scummy glass, I figured neither of the two stores wanted to fund a worker to clean the place. I reached for the badly tarnished brass colored handle of the left door. I pulled the door. It opened. Unlocked – I guess they were still open.

  Well, for my sake, it should have been locked. I should have never gone outside of my house, let alone inside the mall. But, with my simple, small mind, I decided to go in to the mall.

 
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