This is the opening to Chapter 1: Disorder
Mike Beem lowered his rifle, put his right eye on the scope, and closed his left eye.
Donna Marie’s head exploded. Her zombie shuffle ended when her lifeless body hit the pavement. Mike aimed again, and this time Donny’s head exploded, showering a nearby window in a spray of bright red blood. Mike reloaded, and aimed again. This time it was another much loved neighbor. Another head shot, and down she went. Again and again, he reloaded, and aimed. Each shot ringing true until every zombie he thought used to be someone he loved was now head-splattered and dead. When he was finished, he looked over at Double Trouble (who had been watching on in horror) and saw they were in as much shock as he was. All three of them, coming back from a Halloween candy run, weren’t expecting this.
Mike looked down at his bag, filled with costumes and candy he’d found for the kids. It was also filled with trick r’ treat bags, folded up neat and tidy, ready to be used by eager little hands. Were any of those eager little hands still left alive? He had no idea, as he surveyed what once used to be his safe and secure neighborhood on this unusually crisp late morning. He had been out all night, sleeping in an old car, so coming home was going to be a comfortable treat. Unfortunately, a warm soft bed lying beside Donna Marie wasn’t going to happen now.
“What happened, Mike?” Double asked, eyes stuck inside a pair of black binoculars, trying to fight back the tears as they streamed down her face. She hadn’t known these people as long as Mike or worked as hard as him to get the place Apocalypse functional, but she was certainly feeling the sting.
“It looks like that car slammed into the gate, and then died shortly after.”
Double turned the binoculars on the machine. It was an Eighties Cadillac turned into a black hearse, with blood red words on the side that read “THE SATANISTS.” Below these words was a demonic face with two gigantic horns on top of its head. The demon head, like the words, had been painted with what looked like dried blood.
Mike picked up his gun, and aimed. This time on a zombie dressed out in a red devil mask complete with two large horns. It was wearing jeans, tee-shirt, and blue jean jacket along with black combat boots. “I bet that is one of the assholes who did this,” he replied, and fired. The zombie’s head exploded when the bullet met the brain.
“Do you see any more like him?” Trouble asked, scanning with her bare eyes.
“I haven’t seen any humans or zombies with that kind of mask since I got back. It was the first, and hopefully the last,” Mike replied, standing up.
“Do we clean it or get to our safe haven?” Trouble asked, taking her place beside him and her sister.
“Safe haven first, clean it second,” Mike replied, looking at them, survivors now, so different from when he had first encountered them.
“What?” Trouble asked.
“Nothing. I’m just proud of you and your sister. You’ve come so far since the day I found you. I can’t say thank you enough for what you’ve done for me and this community. Now, come on, let’s see if we have any survivors down there,” Mike replied, and started to move forward.
The twin girls looked at one another.
“What the hell was that about?” Double asked.
“No idea,” Trouble replied, as she followed after Mike.
Her sister lingered for a second longer before following after them.
SYNOPSIS: When Mike Beem’s community is savagely attacked, he must exact revenge on those who wronged him. He must put aside all the good he has ever accomplished in order to become someone else. A man without a moral compass. A man without right or wrong. A man who is a cold blooded killer. Will he get his justice or will he die trying? The answers lie within the pages of this short story.