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Christopher J. Starr

Feature Friday: Flash Fiction from Christopher J. Starr

Today Zombieholics Anonymous is featuring a piece of flash fiction by Christopher J. Starr…

A New Day and a Big Breakfast

Christopher J. Starr

Morning had broken, and I felt as if I hadn’t slept at all. I had an insatiable appetite for breakfast that day. As I walked down the sidewalk with no particular place to go, there was quite a bit of activity for such an early day. At first I heard the sound of an engine screaming along, and then I watched as the vehicle sped through the stop sign at the intersection of Maple Street, and  Summit Avenue.

Mrs. Crowley never heard the car, or had time to react, as she ran into the street. Her body launched nearly 20 feet from where she stood, knocking her out of her shoes. A group of people quickly encircled her. I too felt compelled to run to her, yet simply walked slowly over. As I drew near, a strong sweet smell flooded my olfactory. It had a scent of metal, more so, like iron, or copper.

Like one might smell an open grill, with animal flesh being charred upon it, my hunger ignited, leaving me feel a bit like “Pavlov’s dog”. My pace quickened as I approached the group around where Mrs. Crowley lied. An arousing, excitability hit me, as I approached the pool of red. I nudged, and pushed through the others and knelt down right beside Mrs. Crowley, her vacant stare looking up to the sky. I felt no remorse or sadness, as I placed my hands on her body, still warm and wet with blood, already starting to coagulate. Blankly, I stared at the others around me. Their mouths moving, but none made a sound. I felt my own mouth moving, without saying a word. My hunger was becoming less, until I felt it no more.

I stood up, and turned to depart the departed. I felt a trickle down my chin, and I wiped it away. I looked at my hands, glistening with crimson. Why am I bleeding? I thought, as I looked back to the scene. One from the group pulled his head away from Mrs. Crowley’s body, in a tugging motion. That is when I realized; he was eating her there, along with the others, as I had just done. They did not rush to her aid, but to have a nice meal, all of them. Feasting without emotion, just a sensation, either one of hunger, or of temporary satisfaction. The first to arrive stood up and walked away, new ones had taken their place in the feeding frenzy.

Unfazed, and uncaring I turned, and continued to walk. There were groups all around lifeless bodies, like the one around Mrs. Crowley. Meandering along, I bumped into others, like me, without apology. The ones full of life, and panic, ran quickly by me. I would reach out to grab them, but my movements were uncoordinated, and slow.

This was the start of a new day. This was the first day of my life as the undead. I am now a ghoul. I watch as countless others start their new life, full of hunger, the light from their eyes gone, along with their souls. Alone I walk, without speaking a word. There is nothing on my mind. It is almost lunch time.

All Rights Reserved © 2014 Christopher J. Starr

***

photo (2)ABOUT THE AUTHOR – Working as a project engineer by day, Chris spends his time in the darkness of his dungeon, doing anything from watching horror movies, creating spooky illustrations, tinkering with music, catching episodes of “The Walking Dead”, “American Horror Story”, and “The Munsters”. He also enjoys reading anything from Poe to Brian Keene. Spending years submersed in the horror realm, he has recently taken up writing, and became a Supporting Member of the Horror Writers Association, in the hopes of advancing in membership.
 
Chris attended The Art Institute of Pittsburgh receiving a degree in Industrial Design; The Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online Division receiving a diploma in Digital (Graphic) Design earning a 4.0 GPA; and is currently taking additional classes online.
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Meeting with Christopher J. Starr

Hello, my name is Christopher and I am a Zombieholic.

(Hears the chorus of other Zombieholics in the room chanting “Welcome Christopher”)

I might as well face it, I’m addicted to zombies! (If you haven’t already, re-read the last few lines of the previous sentence to the tune of Robert Palmer’s 80’s hit. Go ahead, I’ll wait.) I’m going to start from the beginning, to gain a better understanding of why I am here today, and how to cope with my affliction… or affection.

Although George Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead” is the granddaddy of them all, in regards to the present day zombie, I’m more partial to Dan O’ Bannon’s “Return of the Living Dead”. It was around 1987, and I was roughly 14 years old when I had watched the film at my then best friend’s house. Now, let’s consider the O’ Bannon undead: Zombies that ate brains; that could, and did run fast; and a bullet to the head of these zombies did not get the job done…this absolutely blew my young mind, not to mention, create a new kind of fear. Oh! I failed to mention Tarman! Forget the “Thunder Gray” face make-up and “black circles around the eyes” zombies, Tarman was ooey-gooey and most of all S-P-O-O-K-Y! In the movie, the graveyard was “awakened” by the contaminated rain, which contained the resuscitating chemical “245 Trioxin”, that seeped into the ground. By the time the movie was over, I had to walk home, as it was a school night, and I, like most kids at the time, had a curfew. That night, I may have had the best form for speed walking ever, as it began to thunder, with streaks of lightning jutting across the night sky. All I could think of… storm, rain, zombies!!!! That is when my love for zombies was established.

Nearly 30 years later, I have watched numerous zombies appear in film, television, and books. A lot of the zombies featured in those works between then, and now, somehow reflect elements of those featured in “Return of the Living Dead”, especially when referring to eating brains. Others, obviously taking their cue from the “Romero” style zombie. Either way, anytime that I watch a zombie movie that I haven’t seen, some part of me, for a moment, hearkens back to when I was a kid, hurrying home to avoid the possibility of my cerebellum becoming a ghouls snack.

***

photo (2)ABOUT THE AUTHOR – Working as a project engineer by day, Chris spends his time in the darkness of his dungeon, doing anything from watching horror movies, creating spooky illustrations, tinkering with music, catching episodes of “The Walking Dead”, “American Horror Story”, and “The Munsters”. He also enjoys reading anything from Poe to Brian Keene. Spending years submersed in the horror realm, he has recently taken up writing, and became a Supporting Member of the Horror Writers Association, in the hopes of advancing in membership.

Chris attended The Art Institute of Pittsburgh receiving a degree in Industrial Design; The Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online Division receiving a diploma in Digital (Graphic) Design earning a 4.0 GPA; and is currently taking additional classes online.

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