A different view on an all too known story. Read at own risk ;)
She shivered by the fire, whilst watching the last of her wood, burn away.
A moth was flying erratically around her head. Quiet, yet she noticed it.
Outside, the rain ruthlessly clawed and threw itself at her windows; it meant very little to her.
Her bare feet were cold as death's embrace, even though she held them close to the fire. Her hair was a mess, as she hadn't brushed or washed it for days. With bloodied and torn clothes, she sat by the fire, lacking the drive to move.
In her sweaty hands, she held the dagger tight.
”Please, stay dead this time.” she whispered and glanced at the carpet next to her bed, which covered the corpse. She sighed deeply and fought a bitter battle against the tears.
She had nowhere to hide.
The woman lived in an old forest, with trees as tall as towers, forever reaching into the blackness of the sky.
Her car had broken down and the weather had not allowed her to leave the house for days.
She carefully scratched her arm. The bite wound was heavily infected and she knew that she was dying.
”It's been three days.” she mumbled and tried to forget the day her son had visited her.
He had been attacked on a gas station on his way to visit her. Knowing that she was a nurse, he had figured that she could tend to his wounds.
When he arrived, he explained to her, that they had tried to eat him alive but he managed to fight them off, before it got too serious. A few hours later, he grabbed her arm and bit her.
A tear ran down her chin.
At first she had managed to lock him inside the bathroom, but eventually he made it out by scratching through the wooden door, with his nails alone. She stabbed him in the chest to defend herself.
It wasn't enough to kill him.
He kept coming at her. She panicked and pushed him away, then he fell and hit the floor with the back of his head and blood painted her world red.
A lightning strike lit up the living room and once again, she glanced at the corpse. She was wondering, what had made her loving son attack her.
She began to feel faint.
Her thoughts, slowly fading away and the fever was starting to get out of control. She looked at her arm, the pain spread through the bite wound to every fiber in her body yet, she felt a strange numbness.
She carefully scratched her arm and a piece of flesh gently fell onto the floor. Without a thought, she picked it up and put it in her mouth. To her, it just felt like the right thing to do, no questions asked. She chewed on it and blankly stared into the fire, with eyes as dry as sandpaper.
After a while, she walked over to the couch to lay down.
It was only a matter of minutes before she drew her last breath.
She opened her eyes. Waking up after a beautiful dream she couldn't really remember, but something inside of her simply whispered that: This was good.
The fire was out and had been so, for a long time.
The rain had come to a stop and sunlight came in through the windows, bringing life back into the house. For a while she didn't move at all.
She was quiet.
Wondering why she couldn't hear her own heartbeat, why she didn't breathe and how she could possibly be conscious if her body had shut down.
A sudden burst of fear and anger invaded her soul.
She began to shake violently and took a deep breath to calm herself, but the air felt hollow. She began to hit her own chest with her hands, in an attempt to bring her heartbeat back but it remained quiet.
”This is a nightmare.” she thought to herself. Her mouth and throat denied her of speaking out loud.
Her stomach was growling loudly.
Hunger began to rage through her body as snake venom, the urge to eat was so intense, that it replaced both fear and anger with panic.
It had been weeks since she had been out hunting, thus leaving her with no food in the house.
The panic and hunger began to build up inside of her.
She ran to the corpse of her son.
”At least, we can be together this way.” she thought to herself and sunk her teeth into his flesh, to take small bite of his hand.
”I am so, so sorry.” she then took another bite and eventually devoured his entire arm, she left only blood and bones next to him.
She wanted to cry but her eyes were dried out and her body was still in need of more meat. Her stomach kept on growling furiously but she couldn't make herself eat another bite of her beloved son. The man she had given birth to and raised without a husband.
Ashamed, she placed both hands over her face as she walked outside.
The birds were singing and a quiet wind gently pushed her hair away from her face and the sun shined almost too brightly, into her eyes.
A leaf fell from a tall tree and danced on its way to the ground, where it would unite with the others that had fallen to cover the grass under them.
The woman didn't notice any of this, the only thought that ran through her head, was to find something to eat, something which wasn't her only son.
She began to wander through the quiet forest, in search of food. She found a trail of rotting animal corpses and followed them into a small town.
At first glance, everything seemed deserted, as if everyone had left in a rush: Cars could be found everywhere on the streets with open doors. Most of the windows in the houses, had been boarded up with pieces of wood and furniture but the front doors were open or broken.
”What happened here?” she wondered as she walked through the silent street.
Even the birds had gone quiet.
She no longer cared for what direction she walked, she simply followed an inner compass which told her, that the way she was walking was the right one.
The stench of death tickled her nose and drove her forward towards a mall, surrounded by people.
However, as she came closer to it, she realized that the people she had seen, were all dead.
There were rotting corpses in all kinds of shapes and colors, most of them eaten up and scarred by the strong sunlight.
Her body demanded she kept moving forward through the crowd and eventually, she found herself pushing her dead body against a heavily barricaded glass door, which seemed to be the only obstacle in the way of her unknown destination.
”I want to get inside. I need to get inside. I must get in there!” her brain demanded of her.
Thus she kept pushing herself against the door. More corpses joined in against the foe ahead of them.
”I want to get inside, I must.” she didn't even wonder why, it was just how it was and she didn't even fight it: She had no reason to.
It was just something, that had to be done.
”S***, if they keep at it, the door will break before help gets here!”
”Be quiet John, they can hear us.” The voices came from the heavens she thought and looked up. Two men was on the roof, looking down at her.
”I must get inside! I need it! Right now!” It seemed as though everyone around her, had the same thought and suddenly, the glass in front of her shattered. The war against the barricades began and through the wooden planks, she saw people moving around.
”I want to get in there.” she thought and pushed herself against the enemy even harder.
The panic inside of her started to awaken, because the humans she had seen inside, had started to flee from her sight. They ran up the stairs and closed a door behind them.
The barricade broke down, another small victory for her.
She ran alongside hundreds of others of her kind up the stairs and they broke down the door fairly easy, because they were united in this matter.
”The roof. I want to go there. Now. I must!”
She ran up the next set of stairs and gunfire thrilled the air around her. She allowed herself to be swallowed by the crowd around her, to protect herself and to use them as a meat shield.
”I will get there first! To the top! Because I have to!”
The stairs under her feet became soft, she looked down and realized she was walking on a carpet of dead meat, but none of this meant anything to her. The only thing that did matter, was that she had to get to the roof before everyone else did.
”Tyler! Quit shooting and get out here, so we can close the door!” a woman yelled with panic painted in her face, he did as she had commanded of him and the humans, vanished behind their last defense.
”We must get out there! We just have to!” in an unwritten agreement, they all forced themselves even harder against the door in front of them. She felt the bone in her left leg shatter under the weight of the horde.
It was a numb pain and she didn't care.
Soon the door was broken down and the intense gunfire around them, drowned out the crowds growling and moaning. Quickly, they silenced the shooters and screams filled the air with despair.
People, eating people.
She stopped for a moment to watch the scene from the entrance: Clothes were ripped to shreds, guns lay shattered across the roof and a helicopter flew to the edge of the building.
Watching, just as she.
”I could eat... That.” she slowly limped towards the feast and simply went along with any new instinct inside of her. She was pushed to the ground by a a rotting woman who was rushing towards the fresh meat in front of her and their screams quickly died out.
The helicopter was still watching.
”I... I am so hungry...” she thought to herself and got on her weary feet and limped closer to the feast. Something made her stop once more, uncertain of what it was that made her stop, she looked down at her feet.
Her twisted foot and bleeding legs.
Then she turned her look towards the helicopter.
For some reason she had a new goal: To try and catch it. She limped towards the edge of the building to better look at it and when she felt like it was close, she reached out to catch it.
She fell off the building and landed in a mountain of garbage.
In the end, she had been fighting so hard to get up there and now the hunger was tearing her apart, she began to moan and twist herself in wretched pain, as the hunger took a turn for the worse. Her arms stretched up towards the helicopter, maybe if she tried hard enough, she could reach it and satisfy her hunger.
After a few minutes of trying, she shook her head and got on her feet once more.
The helicopter flew closer and a box was lowered towards her.
It smelled nice.
The box smelled like meat, she was certain of that. She walked into the box without a care in the world, sat down on the wooden planks under her feet. A rush of energy raced through her, as she realized it was indeed food!
Her teeth ripped the raw meat to pieces, the blood ran down from her chin onto her week old, torn clothes and her eyes stared blankly into the darkness which surrounded her, as the box was closed behind her.
She was being carried over land and sea, yet she had no clue.
In fact, her mind wasn't even present anymore.
That part of her was sleeping, resting with no worries, because she had the one thing in the world she needed between her hands; Meat.