Flash Friday 19/07/2013: Unpleasant Supplies
“I don’t think that a zombie apocalypse can actually happen, though,” Tracy said. “It’s all a load of bollocks.”
“Sure, I’ll give you that,” Mary said, opening the door to her bunker and climbing in. “But there’s other stuff too. Nukes, for instance.”
“I think they’ve gone past using those, hun,” Tracy said, looking in. “Although you do look like you’re all ready in case they’re not.”
Mary gestured to the shelves all around her. “Lots of non-perishable foods,” she said. She stopped by a load and began offloading them into a pile in her hands. “Would keep you going for weeks, if not months. You could probably manage years if you sacrifice after-dinner snacks, but c’mon. A woman’s gotta have her mini-bites. Here.”
“It looks like you’re–whoa,” Tracy said, taking the stack of food thrust in her arms. “Okay, so where do you want these?”
“Just line them up on the garden wall.”
“Okay,” Tracy said. She was clearly not the survival expert of the two, and as such performed her duty without asking for a reason. “Like I was saying, it looks like you’ve got it set. You’ve got your food here, your bunker…”
“And the water,” Mary said, pointing to the tank attached to the side of the bunker, a water droplet icon on its side. Her other hand held her trophy aloft. “And the rifle, of course.”
“Holy smokes, Mary. Is that even legal to have?”
“Perhaps,” Mary said.
Tracy was now less worried about the fact that Mary owned a fully-fledged rifle, and was now worried that she was currently loading bullets into it.
“But hey, apocalypse, right?” Mary continued. “No government or anything like that. Just you and the zombies, or the mutants, or the irradiated giant cockroaches. You think that could happen, Tracy? I mean, they can survive nukes, right?”
“What are you doing with the gun?”
“Well, it’s simple, isn’t it? In an apocalypse situation, both ammo and food are super scarce, aren’t they? They practically become the new currency in those kind of worlds. Saw it in the movies.”
“Well, right,” Tracy said. “That’s common knowledge.”
“Know what else I learnt in the movies?”
“What’s that?” Tracy said, positioning the last of the supplies on the wall.
A crack rang out. Tracy didn’t have a chance to see where the noise came from before she heard the zinging sound beside her, coupled with the metallic ting of bullet against canned pie. One of the supplies, mortally wounded by a shot to the midriff, flew off of the wall and onto the floor.
“What the hell did you do that for?” Tracy said. “I thought you said you wanted to save all of these.”
“I never said I wanted to,” Mary continued, loading the next bullet into the barrel and murdering a vacuum-packed instant stew. “I said that people do it. To survive, and all that. You ever think about where those guys end up?”
“Still living,” Tracy said, pausing for the next gunshot. “The term ‘survivor’ gives it away a little bit.”
“And then what happens?”
“Well, they…live on, and form communities, and live together, and rebuild society.”
“And,” Mary added, taking another shot, “they betray one another. Stab each other in the back. One guy sneaks off with all the petrol. One guy gets zombified and spreads it to the others. Then there’s the miserable bit where the main character’s friends are all dead and they have to make their living by themselves. You know what I say to that? Sod it.”
“So your proposition, instead, is…?” Tracy said, watching a tin of baked beans spill its guts.
“Die,” Mary said, with a shrug. “Living after the apocalypse is rotten. Being a part of it? Much more fun. Maybe I can be the zombie that grabs the ankle of the main character’s wife. Maybe I can be the mutant that blows a hole in the survivor’s final line of defence. Maybe I can be the dead, rotting corpse with the main plot point of the story in my rigour-mortis hands and be hunted for for several story arcs. Point is, being a survivor blows. I’d much rather be a baddie. They get all the fun.”
“So you’re destroying your chances?” Tracy said, finally coming to terms with the madness.
“You bet. All of my food from now on? Milk based. Fish. Fruit. If it can live in a cupboard for more than a month and not become a repulsive mess, I’m not interested. Like soups for example.” A tin of French onion bit the bullet. “I bought a lot of stuff during my ignoramus phase. You wanna help clean out?”
“Sure,” Tracy said, gathering the surviving supplies. “I’ll dump these off at a homeless shelter, but only if you let me have a bite on the main character when you grab them.”
“Okay,” Mary said, cleaning up her expended ammunition. “I’ll even let you have those slow-motion head exploding shots if they nail you. They have in the movies all the time these days.”
Tracy laughed, carrying the stack of supplies to her car. They were ready for the apocalypse, given the fact that they totally and utterly weren’t.
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