Lisa Hollar’s ZOMBIE RUN
Lisa McCourt Hollar (@jezri1) is running a nice little flash fiction contest over at her blog with one of my very favorite subjects. ZOMBIES! The rules are simple, 500 words, deadline is Oct. 30th. Complete rules here!
And my humble entry…
“You’re not an orphan?” The kid looked at Jeremy in disbelief.
How bizarre was the world, that he should hear that question. Where still having a living parent was an oddity, and not the norm.
“No, my mom lives in the Colony,” Jeremy said, waiting patiently for the signal. The rooftop were abuzz with kids—teenagers not any older than Jeremy’s fifteen years—waiting to cross over to the apartment complex on 3rd and Lake Ave. The kid fiddled with his harness, trying to get his hoodie under the rope.
“How do you know Bash…”
Jeremy smacked the eleven-year-old’s hands. “The rope is that way for a reason. You want to slip and die?”
“No,” the kid said. Jeremy thought he saw a sniffle escape from the kid’s lips.
A shadow from across the street flicked a spotlight off and on. A voice squawked in Jeremy’s earbud, “Street’s clear. Go!”
Jeremy slapped the kid on the back. The kid wiped his nose and rappelled quickly onto the street. A gaggle of teens with empty backpacks and emptier stomachs swarmed into the empty building.
Jeremy rappelled down, but he wasn’t going into the building. Not today.
He pulled out two lead pipes from his pack and walked calmly into the intersection of 3rd and Lake, taking out the last stragglers. Now it was his job to hold this end of the street until the five minute raid was up. He flipped the pipes across his leather-wrapped hands while he waited, trying to be calm.
Two minutes into the raid, screams erupted from inside the apartment building. Within seconds, the radio poured forth a cacophony of shouting.
“Get the fuck out of here! Abort! Abort!”
Jeremy hit his radio button. “What happened? Bash, talk to me. Where do you need help?”
“It’s too late. Someone opened the door to the boiler room and hundreds of those fuckers poured out. They’re everywhere!”
Kids with half-zipped backpacks of stolen goods ran from the building. Panicked, they climbed up the ropes and fire escapes of the safe building like fleeing monkeys.
“Get up there. Hurry up,” Jeremy shouted at the teens. When it looked like everyone was out, Jeremy turned to get himself to safety. That’s when he saw the shadow limping out of the building towards him.
A spotlight from above illuminated the bloody wretch stumbling towards the escape ropes.
It was the kid. His legs and arms were slick with bright red blood where huge chunks of his flesh had been ripped away by rotting teeth. The only thing standing between him and safety was Jeremy. The eleven-year-old held out his hands for help, gurgling and crying through bloody rasps of breath.
There was only one way Jeremy could help him now.
Jeremy choked back his tears and held out his hand. When the kid reached out towards him, Jeremy closed his eyes and swung the pipe as hard as he could.
“I’m sorry, kid.”
You can read more about Jeremy and the orphans in the upcoming “Dead Sea Games: Adrift” scheduled for release October 31st. Stay tuned for ZOMBIE DAY!