My sleep is frequented by a nightmare that I can’t seem to understand. I’m not sure if I have this dream because I’m stressed, or if it’s just current media getting into my brain. America is overrun by the zombie apocalypse. It happens often, and I always wake up in the middle of the night either needing to force myself to go outside to face that my dream is NOT reality, or I wake up because I’m crying or screaming. I know this couldn’t happen. I know it’s science fiction, but these dreams are so vivid, I literally have to force myself outside when these things happen. I can remember walking carefully down the hallway in my apartment to the back door. I remember being quiet and aware of my surroundings as I’m standing outside my parents’ home. Turning frantically in the direction of any noise I hear. I have had to force myself into the middle of the street for the duration of a cigarette to prove to myself that it was just a dream. I can remember every detail of these dreams down to the way it smells and sounds.
At first I thought this was happening because of my love for zombie movies, or perhaps the fact that I had started reading fantasy novels. Even after giving said things a break, I was still having them. It’s rarely the same dream, but in each one, it’s generally the same ending or a continuation of a previous dream. I had a couple that were a precursor to all the dreams I had before. However, in a nutshell, we’re running from the undead. They all seem slightly out of order, but I can remember each one exactly as if my mind were telling a story. So, instead of the hodge-podge that it was presented to me in, I’ll give you the rundown from what I believe is the beginning to present of the story. I’m going to break this up into different readings because I’m aware that this will be a relatively long blog if I keep it all in one, so here’s what I believe is the beginning.
I’m in the kitchen making lunch, and the hubby walks into the dining room in his uniform. He’s shocked at the sight of me. “I thought I told you to leave.” I remained silent as I was stirring a pot of something. “Kelley, I thought I told you to leave. This isn’t good. You need to get out of here. Go home.”
I carefully put down the spoon and tell him “I know what you said, but I also told you I wasn’t going anywhere without you.”
“Kelley, you know I have to fight. I don’t have a choice. That’s what this fucking uniform means.”
“Then leave me a gun because I’m not leaving our home.” I was defiant. I was adamant on not going anywhere.
“There’s too many ways for them to get in, Kelley. The house is too open. We might be on a military base, but that doesn’t mean that we’re safe from these fuckers. I’m going out to fight to try to control this until they can find a way to end it.”
I look down, pick up the spoon and continue stirring. “I’m not leaving. End of story.” I begin to tear up. I look up and see him sitting at the table, head in his hands, crying. I walk over to him and place a bowl of soup on the table. “Kelley, I vowed I would protect you now matter what. I’m scared to death that I can’t protect you from this and I’m trying. I want you to go home so that you’re out of harms way over here.”
“Who’s to say it’s not as bad in South Dakota?”
He takes a gun from his pocket, and slides it across the table to me. He grabs my hand and places a single bullet in my palm. “Save this one,” he says to me. “If I don’t come back, you know what that means.”
I am shocked. I can’t believe he’s telling me to kill myself, but at the same time I understand. If he doesn’t return that means it’s out of military and government control. That means I run the risk of becoming one of them. When it all started, we vowed not to raise children in a world like this if it couldn’t be contained.
After a long, drawn out kiss, he gets up to leave. The world outside seems calm. there are none of them out there that I can see, but I’m still terrified to go outside. I light a cigarette as he pauses at the door. “Don’t forget. I love you.” The words cut me like a cold steel blade as I envision that’s the last time I’ll see him.
I get up and run to him, throw my arms around him and beg him not to go. He pulls me off of him and kisses me again. Tears stream down my face as he tilts my head upwards. “Please don’t leave me. I can’t do this without you. I barely know how to use a gun. I can’t fight. I need you”
“I will do everything I can to come back to you,” he sobs, “but for now I have to go.” A car horn blares outside. “I love you. I always will. Don’t forget”
“Never. Promise me you’ll come back.”
“I love you.”
Five kisses and two honks later, I stand in the doorway and watch him leave. It’s too dangerous to go all the way outside, but I would have chased after him if I could have. I turn around and start making a list of things I’ll need. I begin packing the essentials. I come to a realization I can’t bring the pets. A wave of panic hits me like a wrecking ball and I fall to the floor, unable to breathe. This can’t be happening. This can’t be real. This is a dream. This is a horror movie. Teemo trots over to me slowly, as if he understands. In that moment, I grab him and hold him tightly. He sits in my lap, accepting it. I decide I’ll take them with me and worry about the consequences of travelling with animals later. Right now, I cry. I let it sink in. I’ll sit there and cry for thirty minutes and then get my shit together. Just then, something bloody comes flying at the window, and hits with a loud bang. I jump as it flings me back into reality. It’s time to leave. (I wake up)
It’s night time and I’m speeding down a highway, Teemo and Sophie are fast asleep in the back seat. I’ve somehow acquired a shot gun on top of the handgun that my hubby left me with. The handgun sits on the sit with it’s one bullet. I eye it, dreadful of having to use it. I haven’t heard from him in 2 weeks. At first I had decided to leave our home, but not the state. It wasn’t until a week previous that I had decided to travel outside of the city. At the moment, I was on day 3 of my trip home. The radio is off because I know I can’t afford distraction. I also know it wouldn’t matter anyway since the radio no longer played music, just news updates.
It became difficult to find a place to stop and rest. I was tired, but I was fueled on energy drinks and soda that I had been forced to steal every time I had to stop for gas. The first couple of times I had stopped for gas, I went inside to pay, and buy some snacks, when 2 of them came out of hiding from the back of the store. After that I gave up on paying for anything. Since he left, I had gathered knowledge on how to properly load a shot gun and handgun and learned how to use them both. As I stared out across the plain, I could see a couple of them in the distance making their way towards the road, but I knew they wouldn’t make it to my car on time. So, I picked up speed. I knew that If I were to find a place to rest, I would have to find somewhere remote. A room in an empty warehouse that had no windows and a door that locked from the inside.
I look out again, and see one of the zombies closer to the road than I had seen the last lot. I picked up speed, praying that I would get through this. I hit one, two, three. I swerve through a hoard of them hitting another three. A tire blows out and the car finds it’s way to the ditch. I’m frantic. My heart beating rapidly, I load the two guns, and prepare myself. I push a button to open the trunk, take a deep breath, and with shaking hands, swing the door open. I know I need to work fast. This is the first time I’ve ever changed a flat tire and I’m frozen with fear that they will catch up with me. I grab my tools and go to work on the flat tire. I’ll drive on the donut until I can find an abandoned car. I hear a rustling behind me, and my hands begin to tremble. Two more bolts. That’s it. Just two more. As I tighten the last one, I feel a hand grip around my ankle. I use my other foot to kick it’s head away from me, when another grabs my wrist. Before it can bite me, I turn my head away, pull the trigger on the hand gun, and shoot it in the brain. I take five seconds to collect myself, and run to the other side of the car, slamming the door shut.
I try to put the car in gear, and flash to the keys lying on the ground beside the back right tire. “Fuck!” I scream. How could I have been so stupid? I turned the car off. Why had I done that? I take a couple more breaths, grab the shot gun, and fling open the door again hitting one of them in the head. I run around to the other side of the car and smack of them in the temple with the handle of the shot gun. I bend down, grab my keys, and make my way back to the driver seat. I start the car and drive off. I assume I’ve gotten away from them, when I hear a pounding on the roof of my car. I start swerving side to side to throw it off the top of the car, and finally slam on the brakes. It comes toppling towards the windshield, motionless. My fingers grip the steering wheel, my knuckles white. I reach over to lock the door, and just as the sounds hits the air, the zombie raises it’s head and hisses at me. (I wake up)
That’s it for today…I have too many things to do. I’ll continue later.