He’d finally had enough of shaving and he was convinced if he got a close enough shave he wouldn’t have to worry about it for a whole week. Over and over again the five bladed razor scraped along his skin; the deranged man never noticed he had reached bone as his whole torso was covered in blood and shredded pieces of his face.
The girl wearing scandalous exercise clothes gave me no choice, really: I had tapped her shoulder as a friendly reminder that the Starbucks barista was ready to take her order. Exercise Freak bristled, turned toward me, called me all manner of socially unacceptable nicknames, and soon found herself on the floor, having her pretty little face melted off by scalding coffee — Pike’s Peak, to be exact.
The cave beast slithered out of his lair for a quick drink at Starbucks with the unsuspecting girl. “I should have stayed home and gotten drunk by myself watching Lifetime movies,” she thought as he deftly drained the life out of her with his overdeveloped sense of joylessness, honed over a score of years in his mother’s basement.
I thought maybe I’d want to eat people, as they do in the movies. Everyone was dead though, and when I bit into my wife, she hardly flinched, and I was not satiated because the dead had nothing for the dead.
Alison shut her eyes hard and covered her face with her hands, forcing the image of the thing at the end of the hall out of her brain and silently repeating over and over again that such a thing could not exist. She was certain the apparition would be gone the moment she opened her eyes, but instead she saw with horror that it was now inches from her face.
The five-day Monopoly marathon was over, there was still nothing to do, undead or otherwise, so I tried to get drunk; obliterated, actually. But when your blood no longer pumps and your stomach and liver and brain can no longer be flooded with vodka, you are doomed to an eternity of crushing sobriety, and that, in the end, is the worst part of being a living dead.
Unsure of what to do after the fever passed and we no longer hungered for human flesh and brains and blood, we broke out the Monopoly board. With no use for sleep, with no need to piss or shit, and with no desire for food of any kind, we played and played and played; three days later, I had hotels on the orange properties.
I lumbered back to my home and wondered as I walked, is this the way I move now? When I walked through the open door, there stood my family, equally perplexed by their new lifeless bodies, with the word “undead” hanging on their lips.
I refused to believe what I had become, or what I had done, until I found the cracked mirror on the sidewalk among the silenced wreckage once known as Derwood, Maryland. There I was, growling involuntarily, staring back at a gray-skinned fiend with milky green eyes, blood crusted around my cracked lips, and more of the red stuff soaking my formerly pristine white T-shirt.
Nora stared at the grotesque statue embedded in the rough-hewn facade of the seaside fortress, transfixed by its hideous mouth frozen in a silent scream. As if offended by the tourist’s disgusted gaze, the stony monster who had once been still suddenly jutted out from the weather-beaten wall and with its blackened teeth took a bite of Nora’s face.
Kenny Darter thought he was having fun by tossing broken bits of peanuts at his friends as they sat around the table. His friends decided their only option for revenge was to take the newly expectant fathers face off and wear it.
Kenny had playfully tossed a bean bag at Mardibug, hitting her in the upper back. Mardibug knew she had no choice, really, but to retaliate with a fastball that replaced Kenny’s left eye with a blood-soaked bean bag.
Leaving the house without applying lotion was, in the end, a terrible oversight. Because when she got to work, her face had peeled off from chin to forehead, just as she always said it would if she forgot to use her Mary Kay.
The coroner felt suddenly uneasy as she opened the door to leave the room full of freshly dead corpses awaiting autopsy. Turning around slowly, her heart stood still at the sight of all ten cadavers sitting upright on their tables, black body bags still zipped over their mangled, reanimated remains.
The bed sunk on his side when he threw back the sheets and stumbled toward the bathroom. Time passed, some indeterminable number of minutes in the thick fog of her unencumbered sleep, and the bed sunk again when he got back in bed, breathing hard, smelling sour, and feeling different when her hand brushed the stranger’s.
Eight of them perched like grotesque leaves on the gnarled tree by the side of the road, and as Amy approached she began to regret the curiosity that had drawn her into the woods. Cradled in the skeletal roots of the tree lay the thing responsible for the congregation of flesh-eating birds: a bloated and rotting human corpse that was missing its face.
It was a big day, and he wanted to look his clean-shaven best. But now his sideburns were deceased, having been executed by overzealous experimentation and a hungry Mach3 razor.
It had to be the clear liquid burning, the vodka, that made that face appear in the blackness of the night outside the window. But it wasn’t, it wasn’t the vodka at all, because now the face was back, and now it wasn’t afraid to be seen — and yes, it looked angry.
On Halloween, Benny hunted ghouls in the Shiners’ cemetery, even though he doubted they existed. Then after a Fez tassel slapped his face and a corpse bit into his skull, he believed, briefly.
Terri almost dropped her iPod on the floor when she woke up on the train after missing her stop and when she looked around the compartment, the only person she saw was a skinny man in a dark suit who was sitting in a seat across from her waving.
Terri would have waved back but the man was covered in blood and his severed head was resting in his lap.