Copyright 2010 by A.P. Fuchs. All rights reserved.
35: On the Move Part Four
Telecom handheld transmission:
There was a small, one-foot-by-two window toward the ceiling of the laundry room. Glass, with a grate on the outside. I broke the glass with the same broomstick that–
Anyway, I smashed the window, then, standing on the washing machine against the wall, used the broomstick as a kind of thin battering-ram, all the while pounding on its end with the dustpan until, after an hour, the screws holding the grate to the outside wall finally gave way. I squeezed through the opening, took one last look at Selena’s body, and ran.
The undead were gathered out front. I ran past them, and the few that tried stumbling after me didn’t have a prayer.
Adrenaline propelled my legs. All I wanted was to leave Selena and that laundry room behind. But now, writing this to you, I would give anything to see her again. Yet I’ve already seen her, haven’t I? How many times had she recently come into my life only to die a short time later? Can I expect her return again? Will I see her? Did I really see her?
I’m telling you, I don’t know if all this stuff is in my head or if it’s real. Maybe I’m lying in a gutter somewhere, suffering from a zombie bite and all these crazy hallucinations–even this journal–is some sort of side effect of whatever it is they carry that infects people and turns them into one of them.
Are the zombies even real?
Maybe I’m just a regular old lunatic in a regular old world? Maybe you’re as crazy as I am and we’re sitting in a padded cell somewhere, sharing the same delusional fantasy?
Gotta clear my head.
Wish I had some alcohol.
Need . . . I don’t know what I need anymore.
* * *
His name was Jay. I met him after I took pummelled an undead old man after the creature tried to take a bite out of me. The old geezer still tried walking with his cane even though he didn’t have the coordination anymore. It was his cane that I used to beat him to the ground and eventually shove through his rotting throat to sever his head.
It was out of his pocket this telecom handheld fell. It was the telecom that has the Wifi I’m using to send this entry out into Cyberspace now.
Back on point: Jay. His name was Jay. He was black, tall, built like a basketball player. Now don’t go accusing me of being racist or stereotypical or anything. I’m sorry, but that’s just how he was. The best part was that he was alive. Real. A human. He was the first one I’ve seen aside from Selena in so long that–and I really mean this part–I forgot what it was like to relate to a real flesh-and-blood guy again.
He wore a red T-shirt, black pants, and this pair of sneakers that were gleaming white with neon green. He must’ve just lifted them from somewhere because they were too clean to be anything but new. Regardless, the dude came out of nowhere right when I was sending my cane through the old man’s neck. He tried to stop me before realizing the old man was a zombie. Instead, he just came up beside me, set his weight on one him, crossed his arms and watched.
Jay’s sitting across from me now in the alley that I’m transmitting this from. I told him what happened, but how I had to escape my building. I didn’t give him the lowdown on Selena. Only said someone I really cared about had just died. Jay told me I could cry about it if it made me feel any better.
I’ve only known the dude for maybe a half hour, maybe slightly more, but I got to admit it feels amazing to be with someone other than myself and other than someone who haunted my mind and heart for so long.
I almost feel normal, like things used to be. Must never forget, though. Must never forget that things aren’t normal not here, and not even out there, outside this crazy hallucination, if that’s what this is. Normal people don’t live in padded cells.
Getting sidetracked. Starting to slip.
Jay’s going to keep me grounded. I just know it.
* * *
We made it under the Maxworth Bridge. It’s in an older part of town, there for folks who can’t afford zipcars. That’s fine. There’re no social classes anymore anyways.
Jay and I walked here, each keeping an eye on the other’s back. He told me he comes from a family of thirteen kids. He’s the second youngest and has eight brothers and four sisters. They’re all dead, died pretty much right after this thing started. His family was so huge that the house they had couldn’t allow for a separate room for everyone. Most of his brothers and sisters bunked together. He bunked with his younger brother, Willim. Jay doesn’t know which of his siblings got infected first, but soon his whole family was transformed and him and Willim had to split.
They survived on the street for a long time; several weeks, Jay said. But his brother died. I asked Jay what happened. He only smiled and said, “Stupid kid slipped off a catwalk and fell. Hit the ground. Busted his head open.” At first, I thought Jay was crazy for smiling at the memory, but then I got it: Jay was happy his brother wasn’t around to experience any of this and, in a way, controlled his own death instead of falling victim to one of the undead. Jay’s religious, too. Says he doesn’t mind Willim’s gone. He says that one day, when the time is right, he’s going to join Willim in the choir in the sky, and not only Willim, but his whole family.
Right now, we’re under this bridge, zombie free. I don’t know if it’s God showing Jay favor or if we’re just plain lucky, but we’re getting a break. No running for our lives right now.
For the moment, I’m happy.
Jay’s thinking about what we can do for dinner. I told him I had some food back at my place, but we agreed it’d be too dangerous to go back there after what happened, at least right now. Maybe a different day.
We’ll figure something out, but if anybody’s out there reading this and can get to us under the Maxworth Bridge in Comtropolis, we’d owe you one.
Is anybody out there?
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