(Warning: If you are my cousin; read at your own risk.)
By Melissa L. Webb
The enemy made their way into the deserted streets of the town. All life had been silenced around them as the soldiers walked along the blacktop.
They searched for any movement, but their eyes found only the tattered remains of the Stars and Stripes flapping aimlessly in the wind.
They spread out, looking for any signs of survivors. Their eradication would be the cherry on top of an already glorious day.
The platoon turned the corner, their eyes still scanning. A street sign squeaked in the distance, while the smell of gunpowder hung heavily in the air.
The Commander stepped forward and looked around, a smile spreading across his face. His eyes danced at the bodies that mingled with the debris, covering the ground. Death was the only thing left here. It was done.
Patrol units identical to his were blanketing the entire country. They were all seeing the same thing. Victory!
The Commander turned to his men and laughed. It was a dark sound. “We have done it, men. They are no more. America is now ours!”
Cheers rose among his men. They knew this made them the new super-power of the world.
“Okay, troops,” the Commander said clapping his hands. “Go get the spoils. You deserve it.”
With a whoop, his men spread out, looking for their new ill-gotten gains.
The Commander stepped forward, his eyes looking as well. He needed something to take back with him; but it had to be special. After all, it wasn’t everyday you overthrew the United States.
He pressed forward, moving closer to a window of a small store. It was an antique store. He chuckled slightly. It always amused him, what passed for antiques in the U.S.
The Commander brought the butt of his rifle back preparing to break the glass. He hoped he could find something decent in the junk these Americans loved so much.
As he swung the gun forward, a reflection in the glass caught his eye. The Commander froze mid-swing, watching as a shape rose up in the glass.
He spun around fast to face what ever had been reflected and grinned slightly. There had been a survivor. He’d been hiding in plain sight, under the cold carcasses of his fellow compatriots.
The Commander’s grin grew wider, looking obscene next to the gleam in his eyes. He would indeed get to spill more blood today.
His rifle cracked and the report echoed off the street around him. He had hit the survivor squarely in the chest. Dark blood trickled down from the small opening he had created.
The smile disappeared from the Commander’s face, when he realized the man was still coming towards him. “What?” he yelled in shock. He opened fire again, causing the survivor’s body to dance with each bullet; yet the man kept coming.
“Why won’t you fall?” the Commander yelled at him. He took a quick step back when he noticed the survivor’s eyes. They were covered in a white milky film. The Commander gasped. These were the eyes of a corpse.
“Who are you?” he screamed at the man.
More gunshots rang out around him. “Stay away from us,” his men shouted.
The Commander reluctantly took his eyes of the man in front of him and looked around. The bodies, which had littered the streets, were now up and moving, surrounding his men in a tight circle.
The Commander’s eyes widened in fear. It couldn’t be. They were all dead. They had been exterminated!
Yet, the bodies pressed on, dragging their ruined flesh forward, determination in their cold dead eyes.
The Commander looked back at the one he had tried to bring down, and felt tears form in his eyes.
Part of the man’s skull was missing, yet he continued to grin as if nothing mattered.
Pressing his back against the window, the Commander tried to put more distance between himself and the dead man. “What are you?” he shouted, fear thick in his voice.
The zombie moved his jaw slowly and spoke, “America never dies.”
The Commander’s screams joined his platoon’s as the zombie’s arms encircled him.
©2010 Melissa L. Webb