Lucien looks Ela full in the face “Okay, fair enough, let’s get out of here, but go where? (untranslatable Canadian gibberish) is dead and he was the pilot, there’s no point in going to the airport now is there?”
Ela shakes her head “None that I can figure.”
Martialla slams her fist into a nearby car “Son of a bitch!” She grabs Tina and shakes her “You had to get that chainsaw didn’t you?! You fucked us! You killed the doctor! We’re screwed!”
Ela pushes her way between them and shoves them back “Cut it out! Beating Tina to death isn’t going to help us now! As much as she might deserve it. So she killed the doctor, so what? It was his own fault – when someone says ‘heads up’ you’re not actually supposed to look up. So Tina is a moron, we knew that coming in and you wouldn’t let me leave her behind so it’s just as much your fault as anyone’s. Plus I bet that guy couldn’t even fly a plane. He probably just said that because he was afraid we were going to ditch him.”
Tina sticks her tongue out childishly “Yeah, so there.”
Martialla shakes her head “Okay, so we AREN’T going to the airport, where ARE we going to go?”
Elvis raises his hand and they all turn to him “Uh, I have something to say. I have to go to the bathroom.”
Ela gestures exasperatedly “So go then, thanks for sharing that important information.”
Elvis is horrified “Outside? Where anyone could see? No, absolutely not, I will not go to the bathroom outside like an animal.” He shakes his head and adamantly and crosses his arms. “Slap me all you want Ela, but I need a bathroom.”
You can imagine the argument that that touches off, but Elvis won’t budge – he needs to use the restroom and that’s that. Duke tries to play peace-maker.
“Can’t you just hold it?”
“I’ve been holding it for what seems like an hour already!”
Martialla points urgently “Zombies!”
Indeed there are zombies coming from both sides of the street. Ela blasts away at the west-bound zombies with her shotgun, but she has to reload after every two shots and that gives them time to advance. Lucien puts a whole clip from a 9 mil into the lead zombie on his side, every shot center of mass, but it keeps coming like the T-1000. He pulls out a heavy revolver and puts six high caliber slugs into it, knocking it down and blowing pieces of it off but it, still keeps coming. And there’s a whole bunch of its friends right behind it. Lucien pulls out another pistol and finally stops the lead zombie with a shot through the nose, but the rest of them shamble closer.
Lucien yanks another pistol out and throws the bag behind him “These things are useless! Why didn’t you get a bunch of shotguns Ela?!”
Ela is reloading again “They had a limited selection – don’t blame me!”
Tina and Martialla dive into the bag, grabbing guns to add to Lucien’s firepower, but even three of them combined blazing away with small arms can’t keep the zombies at bay. Elvis promptly manages to shoot himself in the foot and as he’s hopping around howling Duke is trying to figure out how to work the revolver he picked up.
Lucien throws his empty pistol at the approaching hoard “We have to get out of here!”
With both sides of the street blocked they retreat into a Sam Goody – and they’re granted a momentary reprieve as the zombie hordes outside stop to snack on their fallen brothers. Ela keeps a watch out the front as the rest of them explore the darkened store.
Martialla comes running back enthusiastically“I found a back way out!”
Elvis goes running off equally as excited “I found a bathroom!”
Duke is looking through the stacks of records “I found a rare Almond Brothers import album!”
Ela careful backs away from the window, keeping a sharp eye on the zombies feasting outside. She sidles up next to Duke and without looking away, smacks him hard across the face. Duke has his fist clenched and half-way cocked to throw a punch.
“You know one day someone’s going to get tired of your . . . omphfs!”
That as Ela rams the butt of her shotgun into his gut and drives the air out of him.
Once he’s able to speak again, Duke spits out “When we only had the axe, Ela had to have it and now that we only have one gun, who’s got it? I’m starting to pick up on a pattern here.”
Lucien smacks him in the back of the head “Shut up.”
Ela nods “Thanks.”
Ela hops up on the front counter and starts to say something more, but she must have hit some switch or something, because suddenly music comes blaring over the store’s sound system, Avril Lavigne “Complicated”. I remind you good reader that this tale takes place in 2002, a year before Avril committed suicide and was replaced by a look alike named Melissa. Wake up, sheeple! Ela spins and fires – the thunder of the shotgun deafening inside the store. Everyone hits the deck, covering their heads.
Martialla leaps to her feet and looks around wildly “Did you get it ?! Did you get it ?!
Ela reloads “Get what? I hate that song, I hope Avril Lavinge kills herself soon. What’s taking Elvis so long?”
Ela trots over and yanks the door to the employee bathroom open. Tina lets out and anguished scream – Elvis is sitting on the toilet with his mouth hanging open and his tongue lolling out, a zombie in a Sam Goody shirt quietly slurping up his brains like pasta with red sauce. The zombie doesn’t react in the least as Ela puts the tip of her shotgun under his chin and gives him both barrels.
Ela reloads and heads for the door “I guess Elvis has left the building. Are you guys coming or what?”
Tina looks on, aghast, as Lucien and Martialla move to follow Ela “We can’t just leave him here! We can’t leave him for them to get to! We can’t . . .” She breaks off sobbing.
“Well we’re sure as hell not taking him with us. Carrying a dead body around zombie town is about a smart as jumping into a shark tank with bloody piece of meat around your neck. Honestly, some people have no sense.”
Lucien sounds mournful “[untranslatable Canadian gibberish]”
Ela heads out the back way, and after a moment Martialla, Lucien and Duke reluctantly follow after her – looking back at Elvis’s body sorrowfully. Tina is left in there by herself, on her knees and grinding her fists into the carpet. Eventually the zombies break in through the glass and come after her slowly as is the zombie’s way. Crying her eyes out, she gets to her feet and runs after the rest of the group. The zombies don’t chase her, instead going to the easy meal in the bathroom. When she catches up to the rest of them, she jogs up to Ela and grabs her by the arm.
“How could you do that? How could you leave him behind like that?”
Ela stiffly pulls her arm out of Tina’s grip “It was surprisingly easy.”
Tina rears back and rocks Ela with a punch, knocking her to the ground. She starts to kick at Ela as well but a shotgun stuck in her face stops her cold.
“I will blow your face off! Get back! Elvis is dead, that’s a fact. My job is to worry about the living. I’m sorry I don’t have time to consider Tina’s feelings! What does it matter what happens to his body after he’s dead? All that means is it’s not my problem anymore!” Lucien helps Ela back to her foot and they continue on with Tina glaring at her. “The airport isn’t relevant anymore, that means we have to fall back on our original plan and escape by sea. We head to the marina and then we’re going to get in a boat and leave this festering town behind. After that we’ll figure out what to do.”
Duke’s voice is muted and low “How much longer until sunrise?”
Lucien looks at his watch “I’d say about three or four hours, maybe five.”
Ela sighs “Great, looks like I picked the wrong day to give up injecting liquid ecstasy into my lady parts.”
I’m placing the Ela-pocalypse story on hold for October so I can present a special Ela Halloween story. This idea tested very poorly with focus groups. Please note that his takes place in 2002 before zombies were gauche. That’s how writing works right, your work is judged by the standards of the era it’s set in?
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