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An Ounce of Preparation

Another Creative Writing assignment.  And since I didn't finish this one at 3 in the morning, I think it's better than the last.  I hope it is. :P

3-5-09-- edited on the advice of my professor.


An Ounce of Preparation

The light wakes him up from a sound sleep.  At first his bleary mind wonders if the California dawn is somehow breaking into his room, but the clock reads 3:41 in the morning.  He doesn't process what's happening at first—this light has never gone off before.  He didn't really expect it ever would.  But now it's blinking urgently at him, a little stolen squad car light, flashing improbably in the corner.  He lurches out of bed, stumbling as his feet catch in the sheets, and sits heavily in his computer chair.

He bumps the mouse and his screen blinks into life.  Three hundred messages while he's been out—the first fifty are meaningless chat pings, but then there's one that chills him and fills him with anticipation, all at once.

got an outbreak in LA, scanners saying need nat guard. this is the real thing guys.

All the ones after it are about the same thing. 

It's happened.  The zombie apocalypse has happened.  His mouth spreads into a terrified, eager grin.  He's been preparing for this for the past five years.  The dozens of water-filled canteens, the boxes of protein bars, the genuine katana up on a shelf.  No one listened to his warnings, they all mocked him.  Fools!  Now they would succumb to the shambling hordes... and he and the other survivors would found a new generation of humanity on the reeking ashes of civilization.  Naturally he, Josh Brown, would become a respected warrior and leader, and probably get lots and lots of girls.

They have a plan, he and the others; they'd hammered it out over many months of research and forum posts and instant message chats long into the night.  They are ready.

He wraps his sweaty fist around the katana handle and reverentially pulls the sword from its sheath, thrilling to the hiss of razor-sharp Japanese steel.  The mindless zombies will regret tangling with him.  He slings his ready-packed backpack onto one flabby shoulder and heads out into the early-morning suburbs, sword in one hand, flashlight in the other.

Twenty minutes later, Josh hasn’t yet gotten out of his neighborhood, and he’s pouring sweat and tired of walking.  Who knew the human body could be so easily wiped out?  And it's REALLY DARK at 4 in the morning; a few minutes after he left his house, the lights all went out, the power stations no doubt falling victim to the ravening masses.  His flashlight doesn’t light things up nearly as well as in any of the zombie games he trained with.  And it’s odd that he hasn’t seen any zombies yet.  He expected to have already carved a path of mutilation through at least one slavering mob by now.

The flashlight beam shudders back and forth across the neverending sidewalk and illuminates a bus stop.  He falls gratefully onto the bench, gasping for air.  Once his lungs stop screaming with pain, he retrieves his sweat-soaked map and tries to figure out which way NORAD is from here.  He never even hears the zombies creeping up behind him.

Josh's muscles are rather atrophied, but the paranoia and delusions of grandeur season his cerebrum very delicately.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 23rd, 2009 08:29 am (UTC)
Ahahahahahahahaha!!!!! ROFL
Feb. 23rd, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
Nicely done. :P
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )