So it’s the End of the World

US Government Publication – Airborne Informational Leaflet (AIL) – 1A

The US Government, through FEMA, has enacted a ten-step plan to combat this new and rapidly spreading threat. Step 1 is this rigorous airborne leaflet campaign designed to combat the spread of Solanum and aid survivors of the plague through public awareness and preparedness. Unfortunately steps 2-10 never really quite got off the ground and all government and military personnel have been evacuated to secret heavily guarded bunkers in the Rockies. This leaflet is now the only line of defense – keep it close!

To weather this storm you have three options:

1) Hunker down and wait for the pandemic to burn itself out or for help to arrive.

2) Attempt to fight your way out of the infected area you find yourself trapped in.

3) Face facts, treat yourself to one last hurrah, and commit suicide.

Information on these options will be provided in plain and candid language (see reverse for EspaƱol)

Section 1: Batten down the hatches!

So you find yourself besieged by what may seem like limitless hordes of the walking dead? Don’t panic… Not yet, anyway.

The first thing to consider is the surrounding area – is it rural, urban or suburban?

In a rural area the population density will be much lower. Groups of the infected should only appear in dozens, not hundreds, at least until mass migrations from more densely populated areas occur, so enjoy this three or four day respite.

In a suburban area this placid time of impending dread will be greatly reduced. Swarms wandering away from major population centers should reach you in a matter of hours. Don’t let this dampen your spirits! Look on the bright side: at least you won’t have as much time to contemplate the inevitable, just like ripping off a band-aid.

For those citizens trapped in urban areas, this publication refers you to Section 3.

No matter where you live the prevailing wisdom is the same. Find as secure a place as you can to hole up in, barricade all windows and doors, be sure to lay in as many provisions as you can, keep plenty of duct tape on hand, and always have an exit strategy.

Well now, you’ve followed these directions and have gone unnoticed, but you’re running out of food?

Unfortunately you’re now only left with two options:

1) If you are part of a group, draw straws.

2) If you are alone or have lucked out and gotten the long straw, see Section 3.

Section 2: Familiar with the collected works of one John Rambo?

So you’ve read section one and aren’t too keen on it? You might be in luck. It was for just such occasions like the Zombocalypse, as it is colloquially known, that the Founding Fathers included in the Constitution the Second Amendment. Through the astounding foresight of America’s political leaders you have been able to keep and bear arms as a US citizen. So, stand up for your right and break out your legally purchased and licensed firearms.

While reading the previous paragraph you may have some questions or reservations, chief among these being:

Q: I’m a US citizen but do not own any firearms. What about me?

A: It’s your own fault for not seizing your constitutional right to gun ownership and the federal government may not be held accountable for any loses of property, limbs or lives.

Q: I’m not a US citizen. What about me?

A: Not our problem.

In any of these three cases you seem to be hopelessly outnumbered – see Section 3.

Section 3: Suicide–All roads seem to be pointing in this direction so get to it!

Well, it looks like they’re playing your song. It’s the end of the road and the only thing left to choose is the way you’re going to sing your swan song. Fortunately for you the state has you covered. The AILs will help you decide upon a method that fits your individually tailored needs. Unfortunately, since federal law and recent court cases involving intelligent design prevent us from comforting anyone with the serene and reassuring beliefs in a higher power, you’ll just have to make do with this brief list:

Self-inflicted gunshot – If you always wanted to go out with a bang, here’s your chance. It’s quick and painless and while it will leave a gruesomely disfigured corpse, there won’t be anyone around to complain. Yes sir, this is the Cadillac of suicides. Then again, if you had a working firearm with ammunition you probably wouldn’t be on Section 3. See what procrastination has gotten you?

Pills – The ever stylish overdose, for those of you who always dreamed of fame and fortune. Go out like a movie star! Just make sure you’ve got enough, or else you’ll wake up with a killer hangover and Zack gnawing on your foot.

Leaps of Faith – For those survivors living in urban areas, why not take a dive off a skyscraper? The perfect end for any thrill seeker, great for the extreme sports crowd, one last rush before you bite the big one. Gnarly!

Sunday Roast – This one is just great for those who want to drift off peacefully or those who loved to sniff glue as a child. Easy as pie; just insert your head in the oven, blow out the pilot light and au revoir. To avoid any embarrassment and wasted time be sure that you don’t have an electric range before attempting.

And lastly, we come to the abject coward who can’t bear commit to the real estate deal. There’s just no helping some people.

To The Editor

May 8, 20XX

To the Editor:

Yesterday, my class had to stay late after school. My teacher said it was because a bear was in my neighborhood. After they let us go home, my dad wouldn’t let me play outside because a bear was in my neighborhood. Last night they caught the bear down my street, but I never saw the bear. I don’t think there was a bear in my neighborhood, I think it was something else.

Age 9

Until Death

Brad’s parents were always fighting. He hated it. He’d wake up to the sound of the screaming spouses and come home from school to the same monotonous noise. If it wasn’t bills, it was senseless jealousy. He had started to grow accustomed to it, but had never become immune.

One day, Brad got off the bus and walked to his front door. He went to pull his house key out of the smallest pouch on his blue backpack when he noticed the door was ajar. Brad looked at the brass knob but shrugged off his worries and stepped inside.

He quietly gave thanks for the silence. He looked around at his home’s interior. The kitchen table was pushed over with the shattered remains of a floral patterned vase surrounding it. A blood-stained doily lay nearby.

Brad’s heart started to race. He followed the trail of broken furniture and porcelain animals through the kitchen, living room, and down the hall. It stopped at his parents’ bedroom door. Brad could see shadows crossing the orange light streaming onto his feet. He took a deep breath and pushed the door open just in time to see his father snap his mother’s eye out of its socket and chew on it hungrily, as her blood ran down his chin and onto the gore-covered floor.

Brad’s parents were always fighting.

Eight Times Over Miss October

I hate Magritte. I never understood why until I was an old man, felt like an old man at least. Then I figured out just what a smug son of a bitch he really was.

When the outbreak hit I ran, like everyone else. I ended up deep in the mountains. I found a cabin. Taught myself to survive, to hunt, to fish, to trap. Then I grew a beard to go along with it.

I had a radio. I turned it on for a few minutes each day, to keep the hope alive. There are only so many days of static a man can take. I found a stray cat. Coaxed it in with scraps and named him Marlow. I went on with my life.

Weeks, months, a year later, in the fall, I went rummaging through the previous tenant’s attic. From out of an old and battered trunk I pulled out a crumpled pinup calender. October 1961.

And there she was, Miss October.
Continue reading ‘Eight Times Over Miss October’


John sprinted down the street of a once quiet suburban town. Now all hell was unleashing around him. He ran past a white station wagon that had been pinned between a red truck and a Pontiac Grand Prix. The two children in the back pressed themselves against the seat as hard as they could, just out of reach of their undead parents’ fingers. The two Z’s in the front of the car remained buckled. His neighbor’s house was up in flames. Out of the inferno stumbled two figures burning wildly yet only concerned with John as he ran past them down the street.

His footfalls fell hard on the pavement below. Pushing himself as hard as he could, sweat pouring down his face, legs burning, he had been running for ten miles as fast as he could, The infection had reached American soil.

John grunted and cursed at himself not to stop until he had reached his destination. He lunged over the body of a dead police officer as it began to push itself to its feet. He was off and running without hesitation as soon as his feet hit the pavement again. Straight ahead of him was a school bus. The inside of the windows were plastered with blood. The bloodcurdling screams from within would never leave him.

As John turned to run down his driveway he noticed the doll being awkwardly held by the five year old walking corpse that was once his daughter. He stopped dead in his tracks, breathless, speechless. Like a twig his mind snapped out of reality to protect him from the horror he knew he was about to witness. His world came crashing down on the asphalt before him.

He stared into the empty eyes of his dead daughter, and she stared back. Her left arm was missing, the wound that had killed her. Her right hand loosely clenched the rag doll she had carried with her since her infant years, the torn and dirt stained rag doll had a few droplets of blood on the head. It swayed in a gentle breeze, the only false sign that there was anything left of his child.

“Abbie? Abbie Baby, are you alright?” He said aloud to the ghoul standing in the doorway of his home. His bottom lip was quivering, a clean trail cut through the soot and dirt on his face where tears were trailing downward with his life. As if in slow motion the doll fell, and she reached outwards for her father, before letting out a sickening moan.

John fell to his knees and wept. By the time he opened his eyes the blurry outline of his daughter was within arm’s reach. He gently placed his hands on her side, her cold fingertips brushed against his tear soaked cheeks. He held her close enough, yet she was so far away.

“Daddy loves you baby, I’ll always love my girl.”

He killed his daughter at 1124, on a Saturday.

Continue reading ‘Unforgiven’


Date: 8/13/20–
Location: North Carolina, Camp Mackall Special Forces training base. Approx 25 Mi. SW of Ft. Bragg
SITREP: Special Forces Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape Training

“Where is the other team!? We can sit here and beat the shit outta you all damn day meaker, all you gotta do is spill your guts.”

“Meaker, Sergeant, 610-18-6877!”

Continue reading ‘Survival’

Zack Don’t Surf

Date: May 25, 20–
Time: 1737 hours
Sit Rep: Small Special ops detachment sent in to recon and secure situation inside Baghdad. All other Mechanized, Airborne, and regular Infantry are to move outside of city, secure perimeter. Orders stand to eliminate ANY trying to escape city; Living or Dead.

The rotor wash of a passing Blackhawk blanketed Meaker and his squad. The special forces team didn’t even look up as the M-134D Mini-guns on each sides of the passing helo lit up, raining thirty brass shells a second down on the empty,sandy streets of what was once Baghdad. All five of the men were fatigued, resting against the walls in a thin alleyway. Both ends were plugged with vehicle parts and debris, a makeshift barricade that did the trick, only if for awhile. In the distance, past the shooting and the hungry moans of the dead, screams of children could be heard coming from a school that had been built during ” Bush’s war”.

They all tried to ignore them.

“Sir if I may say so, this mission is Fubar”

Continue reading ‘Zack Don’t Surf’

Stir Crazy

Buck crept through the dim bedrooms of his now sagging and decaying home. He placed each foot carefully, testing each step and spreading his weight heel to toe. He gripped the pump of his shotgun and dabbed the sweat from his nose before taking another step. He rested for a moment and listened to the bugs skittering beneath the floor.

A snail passed him on the ceiling.

Buck raised himself from his knees, took another step and fell through the damp rotten wood up to his crotch. He waited for a few tense breaths. The house was still quiet. He couldn’t even hear the bugs anymore. Buck braced his hands on the floor around the new hole and began to extract his leg.

He had it half way when he felt a hard pinch and blood beginning to fill his boot.

Continue reading ‘Stir Crazy’


The rain outside had begun to slow, an unfortunate lull in the storm passing over northern Florida. The sounds of the rain were slowly being replaced by the moaning of the dead outside the sergeant’s hotel room. The skinless fingers clawing at the door…. Why wont they stop? Why wont they leave? I haven’t uttered a sound for hours, yet they still persist…. Regardless of how many of my friends and family they feast on, they still want more…

Continue reading ‘Click…’

Not Yet

Fitz and Eve were meant for each other.

In another time they would have been…


There’s no use in dwelling upon the could have beens or the should have beens. They are all gone, burnt up and laid low.

This was not another time. It was this time; the hard present, the cruel reality.

Fitz was bitten and then he rose. Eve ran and then she mourned.

Hush, hush.

Don’t cry yet, not yet, dear children. But for tragedy, you say, this should be enough.

Ah, yes but you forget: we cannot hide behind the should have beens and the could have beens. This is now.

Fate would not be cheated, Fitz and Eve were meant for each other.

After all, “When the gods give evil…”

Fitz and Eve found each other. He held her in his arms again. She sunk her nails in his back like she had so many times before. He bent to kiss her neck and breathed in her perfume. His teeth rested upon her skin.

And he stopped.

The thick glaze across his eyes seemed to brighten slightly, if only slightly.

And he waited. He waited.

Then he caught the scent of flesh beneath the sweet fragrance and bit down.


Anderson was a cripple.

He had lived his life in a chair.

When the dead came, the news said to stay indoors and stay quiet.

Anderson did as he was told. He couldn’t speak anyway.

A few days after the outbreak, the power died. The lights faded away, one by one till none were left. The lift running up the stairs of Anderson’s house stopped working with them. His home became a prison.

A few days after that the water stopped. It slowed to trickle at first. Then it dried up and flowed no more.

It was somewhere between the two when the rats moved in.

He stayed in his home and he stayed quiet.

Soon Anderson’s stomach burned and his lips cracked. He wheeled himself into his room and locked the door behind him. It was not long after when he heard the steps begin to creak.

He tilted the joystick forward and moved over to the window. The motor of his wheelchair groaned and its batteries failed. It rolled back into furrows it had carved in the soft carpet and came to rest. Anderson tried to ignore the scratching at the door.

He looked out the window and watched the world crumble.