Short Story
                  And Now, We May Rot
                                                  
By C.V. Hack


  I stumble around the ruins of civilization as we know it.  Parts of my brain
and heart still lives, but most of my normal bodily functions are long gone,
rotting under the scorching Miami sun.  Dead bodies lay strewn about on the
streets, they too will eventually get up and wander around aimlessly as I do.  I
am not alive, but I am not completely dead.  I am neither living nor dead.  The
others are not like me; they have not a sliver of intelligence.  They moan and
stumble into each other, desperately searching for something that can only
satisfy their hunger for a short amount of time.  I have nobody to talk to, so I
try to come up with interesting and intellectual conversations with myself.  I
cannot speak aloud; of course, my throat has a gaping hole in it so that would
be utterly impossible.  No, I think to myself, carry on conversations with
myself, trying my best to avoid the everlasting temptation to fill my appetite.  

  I believe there is a God, maybe there is some divine reason why He has
allowed this to happen.  Maybe somewhere on this miserable planet there is
still life.  That I don’t know for sure, all I do know is that there is a God, and I
can be a very optimistic person, or as optimistic as one could be considering
the things I am going through now.  But my current state does leave me
wondering if God really does care when He looks down from up there.  Sitting
on His throne peering down at the wretched creature He allowed me to
become.  Hey, it’s something for me to think about, and that is all I have now.  

  After a few weeks, my left arm had rotted off.  Crows bother me everyday
now; it exhausts me trying to keep them off of me.  Sometimes I just let them
peck away at my rotten flesh, it doesn’t hurt, but I still have some pride left in
me so I try to drive the little winged demons away.  The only thing I can feel is
the constant pain of hunger, I have never fed on a person before, only
animals that I had already found dead.  For me to feed on a person would be
the equivalent to me surrendering what little humanity I still have in me.  I am
not willing to do that, I am different from the others and I fight the hunger so I
can remain different from the brainless, heartless shells that stumble through
this now ruined world.  But now, after all this time, finding dead animals is
becoming more and more rare.  I cannot give into this desire to consume
flesh, it will only satisfy me for a few hours, then it’ll return in full force, and
the guilt would drive me insane.  

  It’s been my fourth week of being dead, or should I say undead?  I have left
the city and started roaming the country side, it is quite beautiful.  I’m sure I
would enjoy it more if I were alive and could feel the soft breeze on my face,
that, and if Helen were here of course.  But those days are long gone now, if I
could, I would break down and cry at this moment.  Two things make that
impossible though, number one is, I cannot cry, and number two, if I get
down, I don’t think I’ll have the strength to get back up.  Besides, maggots
have laid their eggs in my tear ducts so I am afraid that if I cry, I will cry
maggots.  I would rather not see that.

  Loneliness has taken its toll on me; nobody to talk to; just me and my
stubborn brain that refuses to rot away and die.  Why can’t I be mindless like
the others and not suffer anymore?  They may not have any intelligence, but
they also have no pain, and I hate them for that.  I hate that they have no
conscience to deal with and they can feed their hunger while I am left to
endure the everlasting pain.  The pain and urge to consume flesh is almost
overbearing.  

  On my thirty-fifth day of being dead, I have committed a heinous crime that I
could never forgive myself for.  May God have mercy on my soul, I was
wandering through the woods and stumbled upon a cabin, the door burst
open and a young woman in her mid twenties came running at me with a
baseball bat.  Out of instinct I grabbed her with my one hand out of self
defense, but before I knew it, I was taking bites out of her.  When I realized
what I was doing, I stumbled back, and fled into the dark woods, not looking
back at the poor woman I had just killed.  So now I have decided to lay down
under this tree in the shade, and just rot away here, I am afraid that I might
kill somebody else.  

  Its funny, but I just realized that maybe us zombies, as we’re referred as
aren’t so different from the living.  Besides the obvious reasons of course, but
humans all have urges that they have to fill also.  Junkies stumbling around
trying to find their way to another hit, alcoholics fumbling through their wallets,
spending away their money, all the while their children are at home starving.  
Or even the ones who used to fill up churches and sit in the pews in silence
on Sundays, listening and doing what they’re told without so much as a
second thought.  Then they’ll return home and disregard everything, take off
their masks when no one else can see so they may be who they really are
without receiving judgment from others.  I could go on and on, the list never
ends.  Are people so different from mindless zombies?  That’ll be my first
question I ask God once I get to Heaven.  I hope it doesn’t take too long for
me to decompose…

THE END
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