HELLS ON EARTH

Zombies

Part Eighteen

The meal was wonderful. Lilly bragged about how she took the guts out. Carol enlightened about how she removed the hind legs.

Then Fred bragged about how wonderfully straight the boarding is, and John talked up his dispatching of the zombie with the spear.

After the meal, Kevin led the discussion of rules for entering a room, that they needed to find a way to treat the threats like that. The discussion broadened out to other things like water security, which Betty ensured was not a problem if they could get their hands on a water trailer.

Eventually, the tiredness caught up on them all.

Carol said, “Last night, I was trapped in my house, running out of food and surrounded by zombies. Who knew things could change so rapidly?”

Betty said, “We need to do another survivor run tomorrow. There are more people still trapped in Kyneton. We need to keep going back for as long as we can.”

Fred added, “The way I think of this is Eula, Lilly and Kevin do a return trip. Just survivors this time. Carol has agreed to come with me on the bikes to pick up the other tractor and trailer. Leaving John to stay with Betty for butchery lessons. Does that sound good to everyone?”

They all agreed. Although John seemed disappointed to be remaining behind, he said nothing about it.

When the decisions were agreed upon, they each made their way upstairs. Eula and Kevin cleaned up before heading to their room. They got into bed, and without a word being spoken, and a few minutes after they gave each other a hug, they fell asleep.

Kevin was having a few issues during the night because he was hearing thumping sounds. At first, he thought it was a distance dream until his brain engaged and he sprung up immediately.

He sat up in bed, “Zombie. I hear a fucking zombie.”

Eula woke up, rubbed her eyes, then said, “What?”

Her answer came with another loud thump from out the front. Eula was instantly awake. They got up quickly. John stuck his head through the door, he had his spear in his hand. Eula had the instant thought of slapping him because she was sitting on the bed naked, albeit with her back to John.

John said, “I got this.”

Eula said, “You got nothing. We go in pairs at worst.” Eula grabbed her clothes and spear as John closed the door looking embarrassed. She handed Kevin’s one to him. They got dressed and left the room. All three of them walked quietly down the stairs, the thump, thump, thump of a zombie arm resounding its slow rhythm.

They were all surprised to see Betty waiting for them.

The zombie was outside a window, that was when they heard the radio was on. Betty said, “I was searching for information, I found a frequency with someone giving updates, so I turned it up and…..”

Fred said, “It is okay, it is only one. Plus, I suspect this is going to become regular. We should set up night watches from now on.”

John said, “Enough of the organizing, I will get rid of it.”

Eula noticed a hardened look in his eyes, causing her some concern. John opened the window to see the zombie. At first, he seemed okay, but he looked up a little and he went pale as he said, “Oh no, I think we may have a small issue.”

Those words were enough to excite the zombie into hitting the boarding harder and faster.

Everyone heard the chorus of zombie groans giving the answer to John’s meaning.

Betty asked, “How many?”

John answered, “About twenty. It is okay though, we can call them over and put them down safely from here.”

Eula said, “Well, don’t think this is safe, ever. We do this properly.”

John grimaced, turned to the zombie then thrusted the spear into the eye of the zombie. It collapsed immediately.

“Like that?”

He called out, “Hey zombie, over here.”

All of the zombies turned and walked towards John’s boarded up window. The first three he dispatched quickly and without fuss. He looked in control.

By the seventh one, he was looking concerned. Kevin said, “Step back, we need to take turns and not tire ourselves out.”

John blocked access to the window and thrusted his spear forward to end another zombie. That was when a hand reached up to the top board, but rather than just the top of its head, the zombie was chest high and leaning directly onto the boards.

John killed it, but then two more appeared, standing on the dead beneath them.

Eula ordered, “John, step away, Kevin and I will take over.” John was looking to refuse, but Fred stepped forward, put his hand on John while saying, “John, we are a team, and there are millions of zombies, let them take their turn before this becomes a problem.”

John resisted.

The zombie was reaching into the house, trying to grab John but was just out of reach. Eula leaned into John just as Fred pulled him back a little. She glared at John for a moment, but he wasn’t looking. Kevin staked the zombie attempting to grab John, Eula directed her attention to the zombie onslaught and killed the next one.

Betty called out, “Seven more to go. They are climbing on the dead.”

Eula and Kevin took at two more, then, from the next window they heard Lilly calling out, “Hey, deadheads, over here.” All of the zombies looked her way, allowing Eula and Kevin to easily kill the two attempting to push the board through and, possibly, breaking into the house.

“Five more.”

Eula went to Lilly, who also had her spear, and gave direction on how to hit the zombies. Eula, with fear in her eyes, looked to relax when she turned it into a teaching opportunity for Lilly.

Fred took Eula’s place beside Kevin and protected the window in case more tried to walk the stairs and dead. They didn’t try, and five minutes later Betty announced, “Clear.”

They all stood silently in the room. Carol had arrived but stood back from the action.

Eula said, “Who wants to take watch for the rest of the night?”

Fred volunteered.

Kevin said, “John, come with me, we will drag the bodies to the fence.”

Kevin and John were joined by Carol and Lilly. They pulled and carried the bodies to the fence. They tried not to gag, and they all vomited up their meal at some point. The zombies were rotting, but the smell was more than just rot. It was putrid beyond what was normal. Kevin noticed that, while the skin was discolored and soft to touch, it didn’t seem like the stench should have been as bad as it was.

They finished the job within the hour, returned to the house and cleaned themselves up before getting back into bed.

Kevin and Eula were too awake to fall back asleep, and just as they were about to pass the time another way, they heard Fred call out, “You all better come down, we have visitors, and these ones have guns.”