Tag: zombie

Unexpected

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Everything is beautiful, she says under her breath. Everything is beautiful. I’m in love with Connor, and Connor’s in love with me. I’m going places. I’m going to the top. And nobody is going to get me down or take me down with them.

At the junction where Bank Street meets the Whitstone Corridor, the traffic lights change to red. Suzanne takes an audible breath, looks in the mirror, fusses with her hair and make-up, then glances in the rearview mirror at the vehicles queuing behind her. Suzanne’s assistant, Jenna, seems to be singing along to the radio, and Suzanne determines to speak to her about her laxity. After all, they were driving to a meeting of grave importance. Surely such a situation would call for meditation?

Suzanne notices the van that’s slipped in behind Jenna. A deep red Peugeot that’s battered and bashed around the edges. She could hear it chugging from inside her car, even contending with the white noise of the faulty aircon. Wasn’t that Pascal Babcock in the driving seat? He looked more like a homeless man than any ex-director had a right to. Suzanne’s neck twitched and shivered in disgust.

Come on lights, she thought, and practically sped into the back of Connor’s car, so keen was she to arrive at her location.  Thankfully, the plaza was only a few streets away, and it wasn’t long before she pulled up in the car park with a relieved smile. She was thankful that Connor had chosen to travel alone and had selected a parking spot with only one free adjoining space.

‘Connor,’ she purred as she stepped from the car. ‘Hi. Are we in a good place for this now? I’m sure that Artie and Donald from CPC would love to see us fail, but I think I’m going to make it work.’

He smiled at her, but not as freely as he usually might.

‘Something’s happened, Suzanne,’ he whispered, and it was evident to her that the look on his face was no act.  He seemed… What was it? Worried? Unsure?

‘Any doubts?’ she continued, ignoring his melodrama.

‘Suzanne, listen. Something terrible has happened. I don’t even know where to start. I can’t do this meeting. I can’t do anything. I have to go home.’

That was when a shot rang out. Connor’s forehead a bloody spot. And another shot splattered straight into Suzanne’s heart.

‘Right in the heart,’ came a shout. ‘She can’t have a heart anyway, not after what she did to me.’ Suzanne’s assistant’s words were victorious.

From behind a car park pillar came Jenna, her eyes blazing and her musical happiness caused by a few celebratory cocaine lines in the company loos. Never again would her boss take Jenna’s work as her own. Never again would a sweet, caring boss as Pascal had been, would be made to be a fall guy for Suzanne’s nastiness.  And never again would Connor look at Suzanne in that way.

‘Gotcha’ Pascal shouted. Hie red van was parked nearby, and in it were the specialist paintball guns his new (and very successful) business was providing.

Suzanne wiped her blouse with a condemnatory pout.

‘Hey, Genna. Calm yourself down. Some of us are more accomplished actors than others. You just have to learn when to start the role-play, and outside the venue is not the right place. I need this blouse for a meeting later. Come on, you lot, this is pathetic. What kind of zombie team building event is this anyway?’

Connor wiped his forehead in an attempt to remove the stain.

‘Too right, Suzanne. We’re not even in the place yet, Jenna. Come on. And no face shots. That hurt!’

Pascal smiled and patted Suzanne on the shoulder.

‘Great role-playing,’ he said, walking over to his intentionally shabby van. How he loved that van. He read its logo for what must have been the hundredth time: ‘Can you survive the Zombie Apocalypse? Team Building Days. Multiple Locations. Mobile Service’.

Pascal had his role to play, as did the rest of his team. So, the apparent shabby down and out who lived in his van took out the large box and handed everyone other than Jenna one of the pretend zombie weapons. He admonished her. ‘No getting them out of the box, love. That’s my job.’

That was when Pascal directed the small group of secondary school teachers to site 1 of the zombie apocalypse experience.

‘For those of you who got into your characters earlier, that’s wonderful,’ said Pascal, with voice-projection skills borne from years in a board room.

‘But from this point onwards, no breaking character, no aiming at the face or groin, and no befriending the zombies. Are you all ready?’

The small group nodded in unison.

‘OK then, you lot, enjoy your apocalypse!’

Pascal swung open the double warehouse doors, triggering a flurry of activity from inside the cavernous stage set he’d spend months creating. From the interior’s urban soundscape came the clamour of an orchestra of moans and screams.

These three teachers from Broad Gate High were to be a quarter of the team that was to fight against twenty-four assorted zombies and a surprise vampire thrown in for good measure. It was all wonderful.

Pascal may have looked like a derelict, but he was anything but. Giving up the pains of the private school boardroom had been done without a single regret. He was raking it in.

#zombie #apocalypse #teambuilding #shortstory #meredithschumann

‘The Hall of Horror’ – a Zombie Story

The following is a zombie story written by a seven year old boy.  I was surprised that he knew about zombies, but apparently all the playground boys were talking about them. Much of this is paraphrased (of course) as I wasn’t able to type it up at the speed he spoke.  He related the beginning of his story ‘The Hall of Horror’. Perhaps you could end it for him? 

 

THE HALL OF HORROR

This is a story for adults.  It is called The Hall of Horror.  It starts off with four or five zombies walking around and under an arch like the kinds you find in a big, old library (but there are no books there – because zombies can’t read). 
 
Maybe they are in a stately home which had been a mansion with big gardens, owned by a man called Mark – before the zombies came.  Mark lived on his own in the mansion because he was an adventurer with a lot of secrets to hide from other people. Being alone was the safest thing for him.
 
One day he suddenly felt sleepy and fell asleep, but woke after many hours in the middle of the night.  He looked around his dark room and was shocked to see a dead person on the floor.  But it wasn’t a person. It was a zombie, but Mark didn’t know it then.
 
Mark has only just woken up when this story starts, and it is actually a story all about ancestors from the family tomb who come back to life as zombies after hundreds of years dead.
 
Mark wakes up and for a few seconds had no idea where he was or why he was waking up from a short sleep in the middle of the night.  The weird thing is that his clock says it is night time but the sun is really bright through the open window, allowing him to see the zombie easily.  When he went to bed his window was closed but now it is open.  He is very confused.  There were no distant shouts of happy children, no barking of dogs or singing of birds or the happy feeling Mark felt on a summer day. But it was as bright as a summer day.
 
He thought it was because he was groggy and had not had enough sleep. 
 
But he remembered getting home from yesterday’s adventure.  He remembered unpacking the car and eating the last bit of a horrible garage cheese sandwich as he walked into his huge, grand house. (It was a house he inherited from a rich friend.)  This means that the people in the family tomb aren’t even his own family zombies – and that makes things even worse.  He remembered walking up the long curved staircase from the hall of portraits, like you see in Harry Potter, but he didn’t know anything else after that. 
 
He was used to being an adventurer, like Indiana Jones, but he wasn’t used to feeling this kind of confusion.  He was in his own bed but it felt like he wasn’t even in his own house.  He was a bit scared even though he normally was very brave, and he sat up slowly to look at the zombie properly.  He had to push his big, thick hair out of his eyes and put his glasses on before he could properly see. 
 
On the floor right in front of him the body was dressed in rags and all twisted up.  It didn’t move and seemed to be dead.  Then it moved.  He didn’t really see it with his eyes –  he saw it with his mind’s eye.  The zombie twitched in his shoulder and the shoulder began moving its arm to push the zombie body off the floor.
 
Mark’s was scared.  He thought ‘I’m glad that he’s not dead,’ but very quickly changed that to ‘What is that zombie doing here?’ when the human shape twisted in an unnatural way and made horrible noises.  Then it looked at him. 
 
Mark had seen enough movies to know that this was a zombie.  And he had been enough places in the world and heard enough folk tales to know that, yes, zombies did exist and that, yes, they were very dangerous. 
 
He sprung off the bed, feeling an adventure coming. His foot stood on the zombie’s ankle by accident, but he ran to the bedroom door, almost tripping on the rug as he did so.  The zombie was slow, which was good. 
 
The door was closed but as he opened it to escape from this zombie, he realised it wasn’t going to be a simple escape.  Even just from the position of his bedroom door he could see many more zombies (at least six) milling around through to 6.  So there seemed to be six of these weird people milling around in his house.  He was sure they hadn’t been there the day before and he didn’t recognise a single one of them.  What should he do?
 
He suddenly remembered a laughing conversation held with an old friend.  How do you kill a zombie?  With a head shot?  How do you hide from a zombie?  Climb a ladder, climb a tree… zombies CAN’T climb.  Brilliant.  The larger, safer trees in the garden were all too far away and who knew how many more of these creatures would be out there to block his path and turn him into one of them.  But there was a ladder in the house.  It led, not to the well-known storage attic of his newly inherited home, but to a room usually reserved for the play area of the many generations of children in the house. It was a kind of indoor tree house. 
 
He got his bearings and ran with all his might past and through the horde of zombies who by this point had seen him and were ambling towards him, moaning.  His heart felt like it was going to explode when he reached the ladder, climbed to the top and pulled it up after him.  It was only once he’d reached the indoor tree house that he realised he’d effectively cornered himself in.  He hoped they wouldn’t smell him or sense him.  At any rate, the safety of this smallish comforting room would give him the chance to think.
 
He looked around him, it being only the second time he’d been in there.  It was a good sized room, perfect for his wealthy ancestors when, as children, they were unable to play outside.  It had been painted in colours of the outdoors and there was a large branch fixed to the walls, carefully positioned diagonally over in the corner so the children could climb on the branches and use it as part of their play.  There were quilts and blankets, a large pile of play cushions. He would have somewhere comfortable and safe to sleep.  But that was it.  There was no food, no water and no real safety. It wasn’t even all that high up.
 
He looked out of the window at the random boulders on the lawned area, as if thrown by some giants in a game of bowls.  Placed badly and oddly, they were one of the many quirky elements of the house that made little sense – this room for instance.  And it was only as he gazed at their flat greyness that he noticed the silence, the lack of life and the eerie, unpleasant quality of the day, despite the blazing sunshine.  (NB these were his exact words.)
 
It was time to think.
 
Parlemon House stood in large, expansive grounds of the kind you’d expect in a much grander stately home.  There were massive sweeps of grassland down to a small lake, partly shaded by oaks and willows.  In years gone by, when the house was owned by more posh people, the gardens and lake were looked after by many people, as was the house.  But since Mark had moved in, all that remained was him.  Apart from the portraits in the enormous arched hall.  Some had even been painted next to the random boulders – another eccentricity of his friend’s family.  Surely the stones much mean something.
 
And then he realised something else that was extremely peculiar about the man on his floor and t he other men and women outside his bedroom door.  They were dressed unusually, and it was only at that moment that he realised they were in historical dress. 
 
And the man he’d seen in his bedroom – he recognised him. It was Arthur Parlemon, on whose death he had inherited the house. 
 
Why had he come to his bedroom? 
 
Perhaps Mark had woken up in the nick of time, even though Arthur had been a very good friend. 
 
How would you end this?