by Jon Bruce
A dark comedy about survivors of HOSTZ Day
|Welcome to Z.I.T.S
Ever thought about what you might do if you were placed in a certain situation? What if by some off chance you were one of the only few survivors of a nuclear holocaust? Or if you happened to be stranded on a deserted isle, who would you be and most importantly, who would be the six survivors that are stranded with you? Personally I would have been the professor.
Now, let’s rephrase the question. What would you do if you lived in a world filled with zombies? Where they are not a myth and walk the streets. Would you be one of the first people that became a victim? Or would you be one of the few people who honestly say, “I am alive and kickin it”? Take this guy I see running down the street. I have no clue what his name is. So, we will just call him Spam. Because you know, Spam is great zombie food. What else could a zombie ask for? It tastes great and with the right lighting, it could almost pass for brains.
So I bet you are asking yourself just exactly how the whole Zombie Apocalypse happened. Ironically enough, it all started long before humanity was around. It started with what is called a parasite. Like most living organisms, they tend to evolve and just like those organisms they do it over time. Before HostZ Day (Holy Shit, Zombies) as we call it, just about every living thing on the planet already had some type of parasite living within itself. Hell even parasites can play host to other parasites. Just the thing is, one type of parasite happened to end up evolving to the point of where they could go and completely take over the body of it's host. First it started with mild dementia and the standard crazy person you see walking down the street trying to hold a conversation with themselves.
The bottom line is simple. Eventually the parasite that causes zombisim eats away your brain and takes over your body. Yes we can keep you from being infected if bitten, well that is, if you are treated within the first two hour window and administered the Last Chance serum. But under no circumstances are you to take it to try and inoculate yourself. We are not exactly sure why the person dies, just we know that an injection when not infected, would achieve exactly what we are trying to prevent.
How the serum works is it is designed to seek out any invading parasite and consume it. Once the food chain has died off, it goes into a dormant process and waits. Those that do survive end up having a new take on life. A sort of second chance so to speak. Depending on the serum given, these people become walking weapons, sort of almost like a kamikaze. If the person should become bitten again, their blood that contains the cure will infect the zombie, killing it in the process.
Now then, if this is something you would like to read more in-depth you will need to refer to section 1-4.8034.2257 in your handbook. This will also answer several other questions such as symptoms and what to do on treating somebody who shows them. You will also find that it contains a comprehensive set of instructions on what to do if you yourself have become infected after the two hour window has expired.
Let us move on to the next talking point for today. Zombie poo and how it affects you. First off, you would think that with your typical movie zombie it has this insatiable desire to eat and eat and eat with no side effects. Well the problem with this is, it happens to be a very flawed theory. There are limitations to some things, the human stomach is no exception. Then again, it needs to be remembered it is Hollywood and nothing there is exactly thought out.
Instead, zombies do actually take a natural course of food digestion, just like any other being and they do so in the form of poo. Remember that feeling when you gotta go and you gotta go right now? Yeah, zombies do not worry about that. Following the norm of all zombies they are fairly stupid, but then again they are not exactly the typical zombie stupid either. More like an adolescent child who looks at everything as being shiny and new. That brings us to the question of whether or not zombies are capable of learning? The answer to that is yes, but only through sufficient trial and error.
So point A, on how zombie poo can affect you. Zombies do not drop their pants just to go poo. They tend to do so without the slightest of hesitation due to embarrassment. I am sure you know, all that poo ends up having a peculiar odor to it. If you are not familiar with it, think of a water treatment facility, only worse. If trained properly, a zombie can be smelled from as far as a mile away. This is where Z.I.T.S comes in and removes any potential threats. This is something for you to really think about, we have traded the zombie body rot, for something called zombie poo.
Now, let us move on to talking point B. The secondary objective for all active Z.I.T.S, is the eradication of zombies. If you are covered in zombie poo, then you smell like a zombie, which means you will be mistaken for one. Not really sure why, but you would have to go speak with the scientists on exactly how this works. But from what I understand, the zombie poo creates a type of pheromone that it can then smell, which signifies you are not a suitable candidate for zombie sex. So yes you can actually be saved by the poo, if you rub it all over yourself. However we teach a rhyme to the school children about what to do if they smell zombie poo.
What is that smell, pee ew
that is coming from you?
Is that zombie poo?
Jack you need to be nimble
Jack you need to be quick
Jack you need to call a Z.I.T with a big stick.
These are important things that you really need to remember and try to put to memory. The Zombisite takes over the body of the host. Through some kind of mutation, it seems to be able to cure every known disease and illness to mankind. Outside of that, they are just as prone to death as you or I. If not more so. After all, zombies are still learning about the changes in the weather and they are doing so the hard way.
During the winter, much like a bear might, zombies go into hibernation. But zombies still have not exactly learned about how to survive the harsh winter climates. Instead of finding a place such as a house or even a parking garage, zombies tend to just lie down anywhere they feel like. Because of this, most zombies do not survive past the cold winter months.
There have been a few reported incidents of zombie cannibalism. Even though it is rare, it is not uncommon to see when suitable food can not be found. Aside from hunting for food to eat, zombies only have one other purpose and that is looking forward to zombie sex. Or if you are the unwilling victim of said sex, zombie rape. Sure, being bitten might sound kind of kinky and romantic to some, but it sure does not have that happy ending to it. What may be good for a zombie, is not necessarily good for you.
During the initial outbreak, over a billion people were turned into a zombie within the first few days. More died due to the panic and mass confusion in an effort to try and escape or protect themselves against what seemed like an impossible threat. The biggest setback that zombies are facing, is they are designed to fail. Both their primary food source and means of reproduction is considered an endangered species. If we can outlast them, we win the war.
Anyways, lets get back to Spam who happens to be running down the street screaming like an idiot. Dude is totally screwed. Screaming at the top of his lungs, all the while surrounded by zombies. Oh and look, he just tripped over his own pants, yeah being Spam is not too fun. But of course Spam is the zombie food of choice. Wait, what is this? In a strange turn of events a small party of heavily armored men and women come rushing out to save the day. They brandish clubs, spears and swords. I guess when you think about it, Spam does have a long shelf life. So it appears he is safe today.
Today I am leading an observation team of recruits. Usually though, I am down there choppin heads off with the rest of the Zombie Incineration and Termination Squad. Or otherwise known as Z.I.T.S, our motto: You got em, We pop em.
“Hey, Bob. Get over here.”
Confused, Bob scanned the street with his eyes as he looked for the source of the sound. Limpin Annie stood next to the library waving her arms. Rolling his eyes he stretched and tried to figure out how he had to always take care of everything. After all, he was the un-official leader of the small group of survivors that lived together in Fort Plymouth. Leaders should not have to deal with the small stuff, just stuff that matters.
Limpin Annie hobbled over to him and stood there favoring her left leg, perplexed that she had not been answered sooner. With her hands on her hips, she stared into the eyes of Bob. “Bob, I told you that we need to have the new ice shack built. Now we have food that needs to be stored and there is no where to put it. What do you expect us to do with it?” Annie’s lips pursed into a fine line and waved papers frantically in front of Bob’s face.
Bob just groaned and slapped himself on the forehead. Granted he had forgotten that it needed to be built. But it should not be forgotten either, that it was building that got him to the top anyways. Whenever something needed to be built, who did they ask? Builder Bob, that’s who they come to. People just never realized how little time he had for them, he had more important things to do. Looking down into her eyes, he calmly said “Luau” before striding off.
Annie stood shocked as she stared at Bob as he walked off with a big smile on his face. Marching off into the sunset like he was some big hero or something. Throwing her hands up into the air she turned and limped off, heading slowly back to the library. Annie outside of her limp is actually really attractive. She is short, but then again she does consider herself to be “Fun Sized”. She might have been Irish, walking around sporting her red hair and green eyes. But honestly, nobody knew, the least of them being Annie.
When we picked Annie up, she had been shot through the leg by G.I. Joseph. He is some hillbilly redneck survivalist who lives on the other side of the mountain with his family. He has barbed wire fencing and signs all about his land that read “Trespassers will be shot, Survivors will be shot again.” In an effort to stay at peace with Joseph, we only call him when it is an important matter that he might need to know about. Otherwise it is a strictly “Don't call me, I call you” relationship and when he calls you answer.
Fortunately for Annie, the shot had been clean and did not hit any vital arteries. Aside from a nasty looking scar and a limp, she walked away better than most. After she fully recovered, she quickly took over as the quartermaster. It could be argued that it was because the colony had just been founded and we were still learning to work as a cohesive unit that many things were still in disarray. Truth is though, without her, there might have been times that we would have run out of food or medical supplies. If that would have happened, then there might not have been a colony.
Then there is Bob. Yes, he is useful, from time to time. After all, there is almost a whole colony that he has helped plan and build. Beyond that, he is more of a pain. He likes to think of himself as a leader, but he is very far from that. He just happens to be one of the guys that knows how to build shit quickly and efficiently. Just be wary of him, never for one moment think he is your friend. Sure he seems like a nice enough guy on the outside. But really on the inside, he will use you to his own means.
Take for example the day we found him. With him he had two former strippers that followed him around like they were puppies or something. One was named Bambi Cummings who was working on a nursing degree. Just throw in the fact that she also fits the typical blonde metaphor, if you stand close enough to her, you just might hear the ocean. She was once fired from a fast food chain for not understanding the need of cheese being on a grilled cheese sandwich. Then there was Candy Bottoms and just so you know, that is not her stage name and stripping was just a side job for a little extra cash. But no matter how you look at it, she was always dancing on a pole of some kind.
Not exactly sure on the facts, so this is all only hearsay from those that were there and with facts, it is very argumentative. When the outbreak occurred and zombies started popping up all over the place, apparently Bob was watching titties dance in front of his face. Then when the zombies found themselves inside the club, it became like one of those freaky B movies from Hollywood. Bob ripped the stripper’s pole out of the ceiling and started beating them back.
Now, here is where it gets really strange. During their sixteen week expedition across the country, they went around picking stuff up and doing the typical scavenger thing. Bob, the leader of this super fun group, had talked the girls into rubbing the zombie poo all over them for a week every month and go gather stuff that was needed, such as food. He figured they would go out and he would stay in with the lucky girl who remained. It was the least they could do after he risked life and limb saving them. Then the inevitable happened, a Z.I.T squad came across them. Actually Z.I.T.S came across Candy and just kind of you know, popped her. If it only had been Bob, maybe everybody would be a lot happier now.
I was just doing what I usually do when I have time on my hands, sitting here in my favorite chair reminiscing about old times, when life was simple. The way life used to be before this shattered husk of a world became all that was left. All the normal trivial things ceased to exist overnight. No more utility payments. No more worrying about the rent being due. All of those daily problems just seemed to take a backseat ride on the last bus to Shitville. Nope, this was a new world.
The squawking of the radio intruded upon my thoughts and I sat up straight, scanning for where I had placed it. “Buzz, come in. Buzz where are you dammit?” The voice sounded slightly excited. Either it was a hint of fear, adrenaline or both. I was not sure, I just knew who it belonged to.
Grabbing the radio from the windowsill, I pressed transmit and said “Buzz here, go ahead Boomer, what is the situation?”
Adrian ‘Boomer’ Cartwright has been a close friend long since the initial zombie attack and I have known this man close to my whole life now, which is almost thirty years. Before the attack, there were times that we were at odds with each other. Over stupid typical friend bullshit, but in the long run we always ended up having a stronger friendship after. I would say Boomer is only slightly off and his personality shows it. Hell, he carries a big freaking stick.
Honestly, I am not sure I would really call it a stick so much as a small tree he carved into a club. Once he had finished carving, he drove some railroad ties through it and began calling it his ‘Boomstick’. It was shortly after that he earned his nickname, Boomer. He would run out there into the middle of a hoard of zombies, swinging his club and yelling “This is my Boomstick” and with each and every swing he would literally emphasize Boomstick with a whack to the head of a zombie. Seriously, if the guy had a chainsaw and a shotgun, we might have called him something else.
“Yeah, um I think you might want to come down here to the south wall just outside the sewer dump. We have a slight situation.”
Giving a frustrated sigh, I took my feet down off from the coffee table and responded in a cool calm voice. “I am on the way, give me a few.” One of these days maybe he will learn how to control his emotions. Oh well, no matter. It just gives me an excuse to speak with Sharon. Yeah, there will be a few people in town that might get their panties in a bunch and start trying to spread panic. That is why we are Z.I.T.S and they are not. Sharon will just set stuff straight.
I rode up to the South Gate and hopped off my mountain bike, deciding it was better to walk then hazard the trail in the dark. Sometimes it strikes me funny how in all the zombie survival stories I have ever watched in my life, I have never seen somebody ride a bike. They are quick and very convenient; you do not need to worry about a lot of heavy maintenance and no gasoline. Just pedal power and away you go. Did you know the vast majority of people were killed in their cars while trying to escape?
After a quick two minute walk, I came across Boomer and several other squad members standing there with their mouths open staring at the chain linked fence that surrounds the dump. It was extremely rare for a zombie to make it close to the wall. When they have gotten this close, they are usually found near the dump. This was usually taken care of quickly and without much commotion. But something just did not feel right and this just had to be one of those rare occasions.
Tapping Boomer on the shoulder I started to ask him what was wrong when I saw it. Remember that guy named Spam? Yeah well, here he is again. Only this time instead of him on the ground because his pants is around his ankles, he is down there smelling zombie poo. Zombie poo is not exactly something we make a habit of cleaning up.
One reason is the belief that poo keeps away other zombies, another being it smells something awful. This particular zombie poo happens to be fresh and still very potent in the stench department. But where is Spam? On his knees sniffing zombie poo, as if it smelled like springtime flowers or a sweet smelling perfume.
As I stood there looking at Spam, for just a few moments I remember something else, like when the Zombisite was first discovered. All the myths and theories on how you could be infected. It was quickly disregarded as an STD. Never could it have been further from the truth, considering the circumstances of how the Zombisite breeds, it is the worse kind.
Zombie sex is pretty simple. The Zombisite is neither, male nor female, regardless of it's host. Like some single sex species, the Zombisite is able to reproduce itself asexually. While it is slowly feasting upon the brain, it begins producing eggs. These eggs collect in the stomach of the host and then transmitted into your body via the mouth when bitten. The exact process of transportation from stomach to mouth is not known. Some hypothesize through bile, others suggest in form of a controlled vomit.
Regardless of how you might want to look at it, it is still zombie sex. Take for example the breeding habits of mammals. In one subject you have the male or father, which impregnates the female or mother. The impregnation process happens with a sperm and an egg. There are also a few other minor details in the process, but essentially it is the same as sex, only this time your brain becomes the home of a very hungry baby.
Z.I.T members are generally hard to come by. A Z.I.T has to be able to recognize a zombie from a human and still be able to take that life if necessary. There ends up being some moral questions about becoming a member, one that not everybody can live with. Some people argue that the person might still be savable. After all, the Zombisite only ate the parts that let you be in control right? Yes the brain does continue to live, it just happens there is only one problem. Your brain is slowly being eaten by the Zombisite.
If there really is somebody inside there that is alive, we will never fully know. Who knows how the brain really works or how the soul really dies? What we do know is how they reproduce and how they will continue trying to. Being a Z.I.T.S member is not easy, specially when you have to take a life, but we do so knowing we are protecting something worthwhile. In a way we are a new type of military and we are fighting a very important war.
Trying to shake the cobwebs out of my head, I was utterly baffled. I must have stood there for an eternity, just watching Spam sniff that poo. He really seemed to be enjoying himself and for the life of me I could not even comprehend the reasoning behind why he was. I coughed to clear my throat and called out his name.
“Spam. Spam, what are you doing? Do you not remember the rules about being out after dark?”
It took him several moments to respond, but when he finally did he became startled as if waking from a dream and he looked at me with his eyes wide in fear. Then as my words seemed to sink into his brain he stood up and put his head down and simply said ‘Sorry.’ We gathered him up and ushered him back to the fort. I was going to really need to have a long sit down with this guy, something was going on with him and I simply did not understand.
Spam is a little off at times, but then again so is Barbz. Barbz was a former Z.I.T.S, who just happened to have a very unfortunate accident. While defending one of our outposts, he was knocked unconscious and bitten by several zombies. The Last Chance serum was administered and he was saved, but only barely. He is most likely the only person alive that actually has had a Zombisite look at his brain and go ‘nom’ and live to tell the tale. If only he could remember.
It has taken quite a bit of work and a lot of time, but we have been able to make some progress with him. Even if occasionally he does still try to bite you, it is only because he thinks of himself as a vampire, not a zombie. Now the colony as a whole has enough to worry about already with zombies wanting to take you out to dinner and then just totally skip the foreplay and get straight down to having sex with you. What it does not need is some vampire trying to suck your blood. Then again, at least he doesn't sparkle.
Barbz has earned the chance to live, vampire or not, he is still in there. He has times where he understands and knows what is going on. Just usually he is lost in the dark that has become his life. This ends up where the morality of being a human comes into play and this is also what makes it so hard being a member of Z.I.T.S. Barbz is human, pure and simple. Yes, he does have some mental problems that more than likely will never be fully resolved, but he is entitled to what remains of his life, just like any other survivor. Besides, after what this world has seen, who is not a little off their rocker?
Spam sat there sipping his tea and smiling. One of those smirks that you just really wanna violently remove from the person's face. His story was simple and when we checked for confirmation it happened to be the truth. He had been given a drug by the colonies' two scientists, Emma and Willow. This drug was supposed to help enhance certain senses of the one who used it. One of these developed senses ended up being an enhanced sense of smell.
It was thought that with these enhanced senses, scouts and other members of the colony would have a better chance at knowing when a zombie was nearby. Just the research had a slight set back. Not only did it help clear up your sinuses and allow you to smell everything. But because of how the drug was made, it made you attracted to certain odors. Zombie poo being one of those nauseating smells that for some reason, you enjoy.
Why Spam could be happy with such a thing, I have no idea. The thought of happily enjoying that smell churned my stomach. Seriously though, he could not find something that smelled better than zombie poo?
After an hour or so of Spam sitting around drinking his tea, I finally let him go back to his own place with a guard. For the next twelve hours he would be kept under constant vigil. The dosage he was given was small and would work its way out of his system before long. Chances are he will just wake up with a slightly disturbing memory.
I looked at my watch and realized that I had just a few hours left of relaxation before I needed to be back on duty. Tomorrow we are heading out on a special patrol into the center of the city. We are hopeful that we will find some supplies that the colony could use and maybe if somebody is lucky, we might find a survivor or two. The odds of that happening though, are very slim. With it being this late in the game, if you are in the city, you are just a zombie. But on the bright side, there will be a few zombies that will be getting the full Z.I.T.S treatment.
It was rare for the old man of the mountain to come down and personally see to any tasks or missions. Usually if there was a problem, the people would go to him seeking advice or guidance. If there ever was to be an indisputable leader, he would be the man to talk to. Whenever the man spoke, you strained your ears to listen.
Lately his trips to the colony have been rather frequent and they are always accompanied by his wife Sharon. Sharon of course had her own duties to go and attend to, such as trying to keep up the morale of survivors. Every week, there would be some kind of celebration thrown together by her and a few volunteers. Sometimes it was for a special occasion such as a birthday or holiday. Other times it was just something to do. No matter what, it was always something that everybody needed.
Aside from the weekly parties, she also took it upon herself to teach the few children we did have. For the most part it was basic Mathematics, English and Science. She felt this would help distract them from the terrors of the real world, in the very least, it might teach them something important. Despite the reasoning, we all agreed and thought that this was a good idea, after all we had to suffer through school as children. It was only justice if ours did too.
Any decision that is made by these two, is done so without any questions or hesitation. There is no dictatorship or monarchy here. This is what leadership is all about. You follow not because you have to, but because you choose to. Even Builder Bob who is high off his own power, respects these two enough to know who is in charge.
The fort is not much more than a wall situated at the base of a mountain. For a quarter of a mile, we went and slowly cleared out anything and everything that might obstruct our view. In the wars that have been fought throughout the history of mankind, this would have been called 'No Man's Land'. This is a name that needs no further explanation. However we have a different name for it, The Gates of Hell.
The system of defenses we have could almost be considered ridiculously insane. Almost all of them have been thought of as Prehistoric. In truth, they sort of are. Anything from spike pits, to pressure sensitive traps, like the Lawn Mower which was built by Builder Bob. When these babies are tripped, lawn mower blades go flying through the air and cut through anything in their path. Granted we have had a few mishaps, but those are usually the fault of wild animals, such as deer, elk, even every now and then a bear. There have been a few rare occasions where we have found some of the more exotic animals. Lions, tigers and oh my I am still surprised at how the outpost teams missed the giraffes.
Have you ever taken the time to truly study the sky at night? Just decided to look up and start counting? Not stars, but satellites plunging back to the earth from which they came. Regardless of whatever those space science guys might have said about something lasting forever, they still required one important thing, maintenance. That means anything from remote access, to physically being there on site. Then aided with the fact that the Zombisite is not exclusive to humans, you might begin to understand just exactly what kind of new world this is. All that has happened is we exchanged old worries and problems for new ones.
Short of a nuclear fallout, we can survive just about anything. The natural terrain protects us from problematic satellite strikes and the occasional zombie attack. All these precautions we have in place, they were brought about by the old man. He orchestrated it all. Not only was he responsible for the creation of the colony, he was also the original founding member of Z.I.T.S. Each member since has been carefully hand picked by him.
Our final line of defense is not the fort, but the caves between it and the colony. By digging out a separate space in between the rock of the main tunnels, we were able to create a barbican of sorts. Defenders would be able to stand safely behind walls of stone and jab intruders with spears as they tried to maneuver down the long tunnels. If need be, charges were placed that would seal the tunnels and with it the colony. Being a zombie and trying to attack the fort was not an easy task. With a near perfect defense, the people behind the walls have slowly grown to live without the fear of the zombie enemy.
Of course any community that starts to grow to the proportions of a small town is going to have some kind of disorder. In an effort to control tensions amongst the population of roughly 500 and take care of the occasional wild animal sighting, two expert Z.I.T.S marksmen were brought in, Sheriff Chin “The Chinese Burrito” Mendez and his Deputy Kenneth Richards.
Technically speaking, both Chin and Kenneth were former members of Z.I.T.S, each leaving for various reasons. Chin was always a tad crazy, which was a welcome relief when you are a part of Z.I.T.S. Chin however just kind of went beyond crazy and went insane. At the start of HostZ Day, Chin left the relative safety of the military base he was stationed at, all in a vain effort to save his family. Everybody he had ever loved or cared about was ripped cruelly from his life forever. It didn’t matter how many zombies there were, it had become Chin’s personal mission to kill each and every one.
Then there was Kenneth, in his previous life he had been a martial arts instructor and specialized in the use of a spear and halberd. On his thirty first mission, his outpost had been over run and he had been brutally raped by zombies. His body will forever carry the scars that very few have ever survived.
Each had become a liability in different ways. Chin although brave he was, could not be trusted when he suddenly went berserk and might endanger the lives of others. Kenneth, he had became so withdrawn from the world, seeking to hide the monster that he felt he had become. Even to this day he is still learning that there is nothing for him to be ashamed of, but he insists on always wearing a helmet when he goes out.
So instead of trying to rid the world of zombies and searching for survivors, they were entrusted with the care of the colony. Despite what one might think, their job is not an easy one. Maybe a simple arrest of someone who had had been drinking a bit of Thomas the Fish's Sweet Water, or hunting down some of the wild animals that roam the interior of the valley and checking them for zombie activity. Occasionally a pigeon or squirrel might come back with negative results, but they do make for a fine stew.
The Old Man briefed us about a hospital district that might contain a few supplies that Emma wants found if possible and then of course he explained the special mission. These were the type of missions you grew to dislike. Emma is one of our leading research scientists and always requesting live samples of the humans who are infected with the Zombisite. We just hardly ever try to get them for her. Granted, the specimen always died, but there was always that chance that something might go wrong.
For example, the one and only reported escape ended up with a terrorized Spam. Running for his life is something you would think he might have tried to improve upon. Instead of trying to find help, he ran to his small home and hid under his bed. When Chin and Kenneth finally found the escaped zombie, they did what they did best. Spam escaped with a few scratches and there was nothing to be alarmed or overly worried about. He would recover, just it would take a lot of troubled sleep filled with nightmarish zombies.
We were safe that time, but there is no guarantee of that happening again. When it came to zombie killing, you did so knowing this was about survival. If we allowed the zombies to group up in mass, the amount we would fight later would be far too great. As far as we know, we are the last that humanity has to offer. You know it is gonna happen, but it is always hard to say goodbye to a friend or loved one. It is even harder when that friend or loved one is turned into a zombie. That goodbye gains a whole new meaning. One that is very difficult, so why take unnecessary chances? It is a risk not worth the reward.
Emma, like a lot of people was originally a part of Z.I.T.S at some point and she has her share of stories to tell. Like one of the many times she had participated willingly in zombie sex. Even though each and every bite is treated with extreme caution, we knew it was coming, with her it was always coming. Emma pioneered zombie field research and went to great lengths to procure samples. Eventually she even came up with a way to weaponize the Last Chance Serum. Then without hesitation, she stepped away to work on more important zombie matters.
The mission started like just any other before it. We rode into the city bashing heads and chatted about cherished times we experienced in our lives. As we peddled down the roads the wagons behind us clinked and clunked away. Once upon a time, they were toys used for children. But for days like this, they were perfect for carrying a treasure trove of found supplies. Everybody had a wish list, something they might want, movies, toys, farm supplies. We try our best to accommodate those wishes, even if it takes time.
We approached the hospital and it looked dark and foreboding. Do you realize how easy it was for the zombies to feed and rape their way through a hospital? Places like these became as easy as grocery shopping, just with an extremely speedy checkout. So when it comes to hospitals, I am like most people and get the heebie-jeebies. I am not scared of the most obvious things, such as the remains of a body, or what zombie might be lurking in the darkness. No, none of those things scare me. But the ghosts, they scare the shit out of me.
Just walking through those glass doors, sent the hairs on the back of my neck to stand at attention. Everybody was kind of jittery, it happens from time to time. But this, this just did not feel right from the start. The smell of zombie poo was everywhere and not the old dried out stinky kind. No, this was fresh and it was the real stuff. Smelling it made me think of how Spam might have a field day in here. The thought made that lump that started in the bottom of my stomach push its way further up my throat.
Nearing the reception area a display of violence played out before us. It was enough to make any investigator cringe at how each person had died. For example that guy by the overturned plant. He never stood a chance, his wheelchair was overturned and he had two broken legs. But you can also tell he was infected. When the body of the host can no longer survive the Zombisite just tends to press the eject button and is propelled from one of the eyes. This one just happened to land in the way of oncoming feet and was trampled.
We broke off into two teams and started searching the lab. We were looking for a portable X-Ray Pro 9430. If this thing still works, we might be able to come up with a better way of administering the Last Chance serum. Feo and I were searching through the surgical tools that were scattered about, I remember trying to explain how the joke about the roof went, when we got a call. It was kind of difficult to understand and was kind of garbled. One thing was clear, a fight had broken out. Then out of nowhere we heard an almost childlike “Hello”.
Feo and I spun on our heels and ran for the door, I screamed into the radio “What is your location? I repeat what is your location?”
After several tense minutes the radio crackled and Bez said in her soft voice, “Buzz, you need to get down here to the pediatrics ward. There is something you are not gonna believe.”
As we jogged, I thought about how I had seen just about everything that one would expect from a zombie filled world. That is something that I have never been proven wrong about. Of course the offset was, when it came to people, Spam was constantly proving, people can do stupid and unpredictable things. Nothing would have ever prepared me for this.
Before now, the rules have always been simple. You find a zombie, you pop it. You find a human, you rejoice. If you are a human who is covered in zombie poo, we have no choice, so we pop you. But what do you do when it is a child who smells like poo and looks at you and says “Hello”? Seriously, what do you do?