Chapter 13: Mark Jones, September 15th, Year 0

I entered my 9th house of the day. Some of the houses I had gone into had glass dining room tables. A couple of houses, like the Jacksons’, had two usable table tops. I needed one more table top. I was tired. I should have taken a break. If I had been rested I might have been able to avoid the zombie that attacked me from behind as soon as I entered into the kitchen. I was knocked forward to my knees and hands. Shit! I could feel teeth trying to bite through my leather jacket, between the collar and my shoulder.

Four feet in front of me was a male zombie, probably dad, and coming down the hallway was a zombie that had been a 12-year-old kid a couple days ago. It was probably mom who was biting me. I had to slow dad down. While still on my knees and on one hand, I picked up my mace with my left hand. I took a wild one-handed swing with my mace and hit the side of dad’s knee. The knee snapped sideways and dad fell to the floor. Ignoring mom, who was still trying to bite through my motorcycle jacket, I rose to my knees, got a two-handed grip on my mace, and smashed it down on top of Dad’s head. Then I took the bottom end of my mace handle and knocked it against mom with as much force as I could, twisting toward her while standing up. It was an awkward move and I wasn’t able to get a lot of force behind the blow, but mom weighed 125 pounds at most, and zombies aren’t particularly strong. So I was able to get her off me and stand up facing her. She had her mouth open, her hands out, grabbing for me. She was getting off her knees.

I was too close to her to get the leverage to smash her head. I took my mace handle and shoved it about a foot into her throat. This gave me the leverage so that, with one hand near my mace head, I could keep her mouth away from me. I was able to grab a knife from a cutlery-set holder and stab mom in the eye. I immediately pulled my mace handle out of mom’s mouth, leaving the knife in the skull, which was good because the kid zombie was coming toward me. I had the time to do an overhead smash on top of this zombie’s head. A 12-year-old kid’s height was perfect for this move.

The only way into the kitchen from the rest of the house was through the hallway. I threw all of the stools from around the granite island in the kitchen into the hallway so that if any zombies came, they would have to climb over them.

“Come on you fuckers!”

Nothing came. I waited. Still nothing came. I took off my backpack and jacket. I touched where mom had had been biting me. There was no blood. She hadn’t broken skin. The strap of my backpack and the leather jacket had prevented her from getting her teeth into me.

I checked the windows and doors to make sure they were all closed. I smashed all the zombie heads one more time to make sure they stayed dead. I then took the dining room table top off. The table top was held on by screws, so I didn’t have to use the skill-saw. Good thing, the battery was about dead. It was awkward carrying the table top while also holding my mace, but I had done this 11 times before and I was almost used to it. I made it back to my house.

I wanted to sit down in my bedroom, listen to some music, and get drunk, but I had windows all around my main floor that some zombie could just walk through. I had been lucky for four days. I couldn’t keep depending on luck.

Then it struck me how funny this was. I needed to do shit that I didn’t want to because I had to. This is how the rest of world felt about going to work before the 11th; it took the end of the world, zombies, and vampires to make me do something I didn’t want to. I was some piece of work.

I finished boarding up my windows a little before midnight. I had boarded them from the inside; it was too dangerous to work outside. I used wood screws every six inches and made sure all the screws were solidly in the wood studs around the windows. I reinforced both my outside doors and my door from the main floor to the basement bedroom. I put in a wooden door across the upstairs window so I could lock it up when I wasn’t shooting from it.

The house was now zombie-proof but it wasn’t vampire-proof. A vampire could rip through my roof like it was tissue paper and there was no way that I could reinforce it by myself in a reasonable period of time. My defense against vampires was to keep lights on at all times and to sleep in my lair instead of my bedroom. My lair was made of reinforced concrete and the doors to the lair from my garage and bedroom were commercial metal blast doors. The freight elevator in the garage was made of industrial steel and could be locked from my lair. I could only use the garage, bedroom and the rest of my house in daylight.

Chapter 14