Tag Archives: zombies

The Z Word Origin Stories – Kathy

 

 

Author’s note: If you’ve read The Z Word, there was a little confusion over names and there were two women named Kathy in the story. One, a sixteen-year-old, lived with her parents and ran away during the apocalypse. This is not her origin. This is Kathy, the bad-ass late-teens gal who eventually met and teamed up with Zachary. Enjoy!

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Kathy hit the punching bag over and over as the song Bad Reputation by Joan Jett blasted in the background. She took a break from her workout to play some air guitar. She resembled the old Joan Jett poster she had hung on the workout room wall behind her; her dark brown hair was even cut in a similar fashion. After a few more chords on her invisible instrument, she hit the bag until the song ended and then walked over to the stereo and hit stop as she heard the front door slam.

Sid entered the workout room and smiled. “Quite a sweat you’ve got going on…tough workout?”

She shook her head and smiled. “If you’re asking if I’m too tired to spar a little, I’m up for it.”

He grinned and tried to look at the back of his arm. That’s when she noticed the blood and grew concerned.

“What happened there?”

He saw the rips in the shirt he was wearing and tore off the blood-splattered sleeve. “Nothing, some crazy guy bit me on the way home. It kind of burns a little.”

“I’ll get some peroxide.” She walked down the hall towards the bathroom and yelled over her shoulder, “But don’t think you can use this as an excuse for losing when we spar!”

She returned with the peroxide and a towel and dabbed his arm. “Oh you big baby, there’s just a few teeth marks. You’re fine. Just barely broke the skin. Ready?” she said, smacking the cuts.

“Ow! Jerk. Just for that I’m not holding back!” he said as he put on the gloves. She just laughed at him.

“Yeah…like you ever hold back.”

He walked up to her and put his hands out, which she bumped with her own. “Ready?”

He nodded and she punched him in the jaw faster than he could react. He backed up and shook his head, then laughed. “That all you got?”

Punches were thrown, most were blocked on both sides, and each worked up a sweat as they switched between punches and banter until Sid seemed to slow down a bit and was hit a few more times.

Kathy became worried. “You okay? It’s not usually this easy. And you’re looking a little green.”

He pulled off the gloves. “Yeah, I’m not feeling so hot. I think we’d better stop for now.” She nodded and took off her gloves.

She smiled at him. “Guess I’ll take a shower. Go lie down and I’ll make dinner when I get out! Maybe some soup for you…something light since you’re looking so sick.”

Kathy got undressed and slid the glass door shut on the shower, letting the cold water run over her sweaty body. As she washed the soap off, she noticed a shadow through the glass. She finished up and turned off the water.

“Feeling better already, Sid? Trying to catch a glimpse?” she said with a laugh as she reached out for her towel. He walked toward the door and she slammed it on him. “Oh no, you have to work for it if you want some!” she laughed as she dried off with the towel and wrapped it around her. Sid approached the foggy glass and then slammed a hand against it, scaring her.

“Sid? What the hell?” she said with anger as she opened the glass door. He turned to look at her and she noticed a different look in his eyes, almost cloudy. “Sid?”

He lunged at her and she dove across the bathroom, all while keeping the towel wrapped around her body. He fell through the door of the shower, shattering glass everywhere.  “What the hell, Sid?” she asked as he jumped up, glass sticking out of his chest and face. He growled a little and went for her again. This time she was better prepared and threw a right uppercut, hitting him square in the jaw and knocking him off his feet. She slammed the bathroom door and shoved a chair under the knob so he was trapped.

She ran to their bedroom and threw on a vintage Runaways tee, skipping the bra and underwear to throw on a pair of black skinny jeans. She heard slamming against the bathroom door and then a scream from outside their studio apartment. She ran to the window to see two little kids being chased by a man covered in blood.

She thought about what she saw outside and what was in her bathroom, the man she loved turned into something else, and knew what was going on. She’d seen the movies. It was zombies. She grabbed Sid’s aluminum baseball bat and jumped onto the ancient fire escape. The ladder, rusted stuck, wouldn’t give so she jumped with her full weight onto it and as it clanged loose held on until it jerked to a stop, almost flinging her from it. She jumped the last four feet and landed as the kids ran by her.

The zombie stopped, looked from the children to her, and let out a piercing sound almost like a scream as it started in her direction. One swift swing of the bat to its head took it down and she turned to the kids. “Are you two okay?”

They nodded without making a sound until one pointed behind Kathy and screamed. She turned to find two more monsters right on top of her. She screamed to the kids “Run home and don’t stop for anything! Lock yourselves in!” The two monsters pushed her into the glass behind her, shattering it as she dropped the bat and held both creatures at the throat so they couldn’t bite her. They pushed and clawed at her, one scratching at her arm as she put a foot into each of the monsters’ chests and pushed with all her strength. They both toppled backward and fell as she reached around for a weapon in the window display. The window belonged to an old army-navy surplus store and lucky for her had a crossbow under the splintered glass on the display floor. She grabbed it just as the zombies stood and let loose with an arrow, shooting one in the head. She loaded as the second walked in her direction, firing as it got close but only hitting the shoulder. She quickly reloaded and this time hit the target.

She stood in the display, brushing glass from her body and looking around. The cut on her arm was more of a scratch and hadn’t drawn blood, but she knew she would need more protection, and that’s when she saw the dummy in the window wearing a long, black leather coat. She snagged that and went into the store to see what else she could find for protection. The dark building had the usual stuff, camouflage clothing, camping gear, old army surplus items, but nothing really lethal until she noticed the curtain covering a doorway to a back room.

“Jackpot,” she said as she pulled the curtain back. Guns, swords and all kinds of illegal weapons garnered the walls. She took what she wanted.

Back at her apartment, Kathy used the hidden key to get in the front door. She looked toward the bathroom door, which was now splintered, half of the remnants hanging from the hinges and the rest in small pieces on the floor.  She reached into the backpack she now carried and grabbed the handle of the shotgun she’d taken from the store. A scratching sound came from the kitchen and she turned in time to see Sid, or what used to be Sid, coming at her slowly.

She aimed the shotgun at her boyfriend’s head and fired.

 

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My Fellow Survivors


This zombie flash fiction piece is available on my Etsy along with many other typography pieces.

Also, my first published work, The Z Word, is available on Amazon. You can also join in on the zombie fun by liking our facebook page for contests, giveaways, prequels and lots more!

zombie e.e. cummings

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(Inspired by my recent book being published! Check it out!)

Zombie Haiku and Art Contest

To celebrate the release of my first book, The Z Word, our facebook page is having a contest! Just click Welcome under the photograph.

We’re looking for the best zombie haiku and zombie art* out there!

The contest rules are simple. It must either be a haiku (5-7-5 syllables, 3 lines) or art that is your original work.

Prizes include signed copies of The Z Word (with a special inscription just for you!) and lots of other random zombie paraphernalia! So come by our page, like us and start posting your work!

The Z Word is available through Amazon on paperback and for Kindle!

*Artwork may be used for promotional purposes. Artists will get samples of anything created with their image as long as they give us their contact info.

My first book!

My first book is out and available via Amazon! Check out the paperback or Kindle version HERE or click the cover art:

War. . .murder. . .disease. . . A zombie cares not for these things. In a zombie apocalypse, you’re only as powerful as the weapon you wield, only as strong as those you surround yourself with, but no matter how hard you try, you probably won’t survive in the end. The Z Word is a collection of short stories about people trying to do just that. Zachary, a former nerd, uses his vast knowledge of zombies learned from pop culture to survive, rescue others and even-he hopes-get his first girlfriend. A principal strives to keep the few child survivors alive in a school, while neighbors battle it out over a zombie hunting contest, and a teenage girl leaves home to take her chances out on the road. Some barricade themselves inside their homes while others stay on the move. But humanity will endure and humans can sometimes be the best in the worst situations. The Z Word is a manual of what to do-and not to do-in a world ruled by the dead. Don’t make the same mistake others have, heed these stories . . .they may be your only chance at survival.

The Z Word Origin Stories: Zachary

This story is a prequel to my upcoming zombie collection The Z Word. Like it here on facebook.
Click the photograph to see WhiteStag’s Etsy account where this print and more are available!

Zachary Ward was sitting in his old bean bag chair reading the recent Walking Dead when it happened. A scream ripped through the open window of his bedroom and he barely looked up from the issue. But then, who would? The second scream was the one that forced him to carefully place it on the shag carpet in the basement bedroom he “rented” from his grandmother and walk up to the eye-leveled window.

It had started. He saw two of his neighbors chased down by another, who seemed a bit slower than usual, and a bit more…gray? The slower neighbor latched on to one of their jackets and pulled the woman in, biting her arm as her scream reverberated off the walls of neighboring homes. Blood splattered across Zach’s window as her eyes met his and she reached for him.

It was time.

He ran to the comic he’d thrown to the ground in frustration and held the cover up, looking from the image to the view outside. It was definitely time.

He turned to find his grandmother standing in his doorway, the light from the basement steps silhouetting her figure.

“Mom-mom, how many times have I told you to knock first! I don’t care if you have to do laundry!” he whined. She stood, waiting for something, and that was when he looked back at the comic he’d been reading and flipped to the fourth page. It showed a back lit silhouette of someone in a doorway, a similar scene. He carefully placed the comic onto his sofa bed and reached under, feeling for something.

“Mom-mom, I would answer me if I were you…”

She made a sound, guttural, coming from deep inside, and that’s when his hand hit what he was looking for – a baseball bat. She lunged at him just as he pulled it out, and he swung it at her side, knocking her away from him.

“Mom-mom?” He looked into her eyes, a milky white. He sighed and knew what it was he had to do.

“Sorry mom-mom. You’re no longer the person I knew. I love you.” She stood again, her flowery moo moo flowing behind her as she jumped at him and he swung the bat at her head. The crack sounded different from those of the star baseball player’s he bench-warmed for. After all, his bat had never connected with anything other than wind that whole season his dad forced him to play.

She dropped to the ground, blood oozing from a crack in her skull. Zach looked at her for a brief moment and then started gathering items around his room and throwing them into a backpack. He’d been reading about these things for years now. He’d seen all the movies, even the terrible ones. The books, the graphic novels, everything prepared him for this moment. And he knew what he had to do next. It was time to save the hottest girl in his old high school who just so happened to live across the street and also, however unlikely, never pulled the blinds when she was changing. Why else would a twenty-year-old live in his grandmother’s basement?

As he burst through the old front door of her home, the screams got to him and he winced and lost his nerve for a moment. At that point he pulled out the iPod his cousin had given him when the new one came out and threw the buds into his ears after pushing random. With the bat in his hand he entered the street filled with monsters and victims alike, trying to catch some food or survive, depending which side they were on. He stepped to the other curb and was ready to swing the bat when a song started. The first few notes made him stop as the lyrics “Well no one told me about her…the way she lied” and he laughed at the irony of this song of all songs being the first to play. As he ran across the street one of the zombies came after him and he swung, this time right at its head. It went down fast as two more turned to look at him. He ran around her brother’s van parked in the driveway and checked to see if he could make it to the front door. He took off for her house and got to the door to find it locked. He rang the doorbell and turned to find the two from earlier coming at him rather slowly.

“Just like Romero said,” Zach actually said to himself as he gripped the bat tighter before thinking better of it and swing the bag around from his back. He pulled out a half-filled bottle of rum and stuffed a rag in it as they got closer, dropping the iPod and letting it yank the buds out of his ears. A quick flick of the lighter and the cocktail was lit. He threw it at the oncoming creatures and watched them ignite and fall, bringing three more into view who were apparently following them.

“Shit.”

He turned and banged on the door, rang the doorbell again and started yelling. Finally he heard a voice.

“Who is it?”

“Lucy! It’s Zach! Let me in!”

“Who? I can’t. Something’s going on! I’m not opening the door!”

“If you don’t open it I WILL DIE!”

He waited, the closest undead thing within reach of his bat and he took it down with one swing. The click of the lock turning caught his attention and as she opened the door he fell inside onto her.

“Quick! Lock it!”

She sat on her ass looking at the monsters slowly approaching and began to shake so he jumped up and slammed it shut in their faces. He threw the latch and slid the chain into place, then offered her his hand.

“Are you okay?” She nodded and then wrinkled her nose at him.

“Oh, you’re that creepy guy from across the street. You live with that old lady.”

“Um…yeah. I was also in your homeroom.”

“Oh.”

She brushed herself off. “What do you want?”

“I was trying to save you.”

“Well, I’m fine. I’m locked in. Safe. You can go.”

“We need to barricade the door, block up the windows and do a quick survey of what you have in here. Got a lot of food? We’ll need it.”

Lucy just stood there staring.

“What?” he asked her.

“Why should I share with you?”

He pulled open the curtains to get a view of the street. “You want to be alone in all this? They’re zombies.”

“They’re what?”

“Zombies. Dead people come back to life. Eating people.”

“That’s stupid. They aren’t even eating the people’s brains. Zombies eat brains.”

“Where in the hell did you hear that? It’s a myth.”

“So are zombies.”

“Then what are those?” he yelled, pointing outside at the chaos.

She looked outside and her confidence wavered. “They can’t be z- they just can’t be.”

She rubbed her arm and looked at him as sweat began to form on her forehead. “Well, what do we do?”

“We do what they always do. Lock ourselves in. Hold down the fort. Hope others find us so we become stronger in numbers.”

The two of them went to work moving furniture and blocking the doors and windows with as much as they could find. A quick inventory found them plenty of food and he filled up the bathtub with water.

“Why do we do this?”

“If the water stops running you’ll thank me.”

“What if I need to take a shower?”

He rubbed his temples for a moment trying not to yell, but ended up losing his temper a bit anyway. He yelled “YOU DON’T TAKE A SHOWER IN THE MIDDLE OF A ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE!”

Her lower lip trembled and he instantly felt bad. “I’m sorry, Lucy. I didn’t mean it.”

She took a good look at him and collected herself. “I’m fine. I get it. We’re in trouble. I’ll be tough.” She looked out the bathroom window and gasped. “This is for real, isn’t it.”

“Sure is.”

She turned and looked at him, a small smile forming. “I can’t believe I’m going to say this, but I’m actually glad you’re here.”

He smiled and felt his heart skip a beat. The hot girl from his high school days was happy he existed. That’s when they heard the thump. Zach ran down as fast as he could, Lucy close behind, to find the front door being rattled. He ran to it and pushed up against it, Lucy copying him. That’s when the window shattered.

“No! Lucy get back!” By the time she realized what was going on, a hand grabbed her nearby arm and pulled it through the window. Zach grabbed her waist and pulled her back in, and as she turned he saw the distinct marks on her arm. Bite marks. She looked at it and said “I’m fine!”

“You aren’t. When you get bit you become one.”

She looked at the cuts, wiped away some blood and passed out. He picked her up and put her on the couch.

“Shit.” He knew what he had to do. He ran to the front door and added a heavy armoire to their makeshift barricade and then went back to her. She didn’t wake up. “I’m sorry. I have to leave you. It’s too late for you.”

At that he grabbed the keys to her brother’s van off the counter, ran to the back door, turned to take a last look at the hottest girl in his grade, and left through the backyard.

The Road Not Taken (By the Undead)

The Road Not Taken (By the Undead)

By Robert Frost and Dennis Finocchiaro

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, zombies on my trail,
And sorry I could not travel both not knowing which was safe,
And be one traveler, long I stood worried I would fail,
And looked down one as far as I could looking for detail
To where it bent in the undergrowth; I must avoid the zombie strafe.

Then took the other, as just as fair, because I had to choose,
And having perhaps the better claim, of safety and deliverance,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear; no mark of dragging feet or shoes,
Though as for that the passing there seemed safe as I could muse,
Had worn them really about the same, I hoped I had a chance.

And both that morning equally lay two bodies long decaying,
In leaves no step had trodden black. But trails of blood there lay,
Oh, I kept the first for another day! In hope there’d be no slaying,
Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I found one creature buffeting,
I doubted if I should ever come back, to try the other way.

I shall be telling this with a sigh that my knife did seep into it’s brain,
Somewhere ages and ages hence: it’s former soul did feel my blade,
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— much in vain,
I took the one less traveled by, and a zombie I have slain,
And that has made all the difference in this, my long crusade.

The Z Word, my first published novel is available now here.  Make sure you like it on facebook by clicking HERE. Feel free to come by and post any zombie poetry you write on our page!

And yes, I know I’m going to literary hell for what I have done to this classic poem. It’s all in good fun.