How to Survive a Zombie Attack

April 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

By the time she patched the hole in her skull they were already clawing at her door—exposed bone fingertips shrieking down window glass. They were rabid with hunger for brainmeat—for the electrical pulsing that kept what remained of their bodies animated. She drew the blinds. She tried to ignore her throbbing head. Crawling to the bathroom to get away from the windows, she inhaled deeply. She drew a cold bath, undressed and sank into the water to her neck—careful not to wet her bandages, careful not to move or think too quickly.

The frigid water burned through her cellophane skin, pulling it tight as canvas over her frame. But it was working. Almost immediately her heart rate slowed to a cricket chirp in her ribcage, her thoughts came more slowly, vividly like autumn clouds over a meadow of grey matter. Her breath shallowed until it was barely breath at all—which is why she did not jump or even flinch when the door came down in a shatter of splinters. The stench of rotting rancid flesh assaulted her dulled senses. She could practically taste the coagulated blood, the maggot-chewed muscle.

Their mangled hands grabbed at the air as they pulled themselves into the tiny bathroom. 5 of them. Almost pulling each other apart to get to her still flesh-warm cotton dress and panties on the tile at the brim of the tub. Like raptors they bit and tore her garments to rags. Then advancing toward her near frozen figure, one extended a decomposing arm and brushed her hair, slowly stringing her long hair to its exposed nostrils—the most intimate touch she’s received in many years, she would later lament.

Unable to detect enough life in her body, they began to retreat from the bathroom, moving stiltedly like wooden figurines. When she heard the last of them crawl over the broken glass of the windows she emerged from her death bath and wrapped herself in every towel she could tear off the towel rack and curled on the floor, shaking and sobbing but living and breathing—a zombie attack survivor.

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