Chet & Floyd vs. The Apocalypse: Volume 1

 

 

 

Chet And Floyd

VS

The Apocalypse

 

Justin Hunter

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright 2013 by Justin Hunter

Chapter - 1

 

“Okay, Chet, who do we grab?”

“It’s not that easy Floyd.
There is too much to think about.”

“Think fast.
If we stay here too long we’ll be the food.”

Huddled in the corner of the
water-sodden and decaying upstairs bedroom was a family, consisting of a man, a woman and a child. Even in their fear they did not hold each other with any fervent animal panic. Their postures showed defeat and patience in as they waited for their sentence to be carried out.

Their jury
consisted of two men, tall and lithe. White skin peeked under layers of grime. The one named Chet had brown hair that was slicked down, probably by saliva, into a little boy’s part. He wore glasses that he constantly adjusted, as if they caused him discomfort. He was looking at the family with a frown that moved and twitched as his thoughts changed.

Floyd, though not over thirty, had the shockingly white hair of an old man.
He was as much a statue as Chet was constant movement. He stared directly at the family without even as much as a blink.

“Do you even have any thoughts on this one yourself?”
Chet asked Floyd. “You will have as much to blame in this decision as I do. You
have
to have an opinion.”

“I know that I’m starving
, and I need to eat,” Floyd said. “I’m running out of morals on the whole thing. Just pick somebody. This was your idea.”

“And you’re just going to go along with it?
I’m talking about eating people Floyd. This is not the usual way you choose between Chinese and Italian,” Chet said and laughed. “Don’t give me any trouble about the morality issue of it. I am starving as much as you, and you know I would never be inclined to do what we are about to do if I had
any
other choice.” Chet paused in his speech, waiting for Floyd to save his soul with a word. Floyd kicked a piece of debris into the corner where the family sat. They yelped.

“You don’t need me to aid in your conscience Chet
,” Floyd said.

“Yes I do!
Balm me Floydy baby.” Chet puckered his lips at Floyd. Floyd slapped him.

“Be serious.”

“I don’t think I can. How do I make the choice? Aren’t you going to help me?” Chet said. His twitches became more serious as his agitation grew.

“I’m going to slap you again if you start getting crazy on me
,” Floyd said. “Get serious Chet.”

“I am serious.”
Chet smiled wickedly and looked back at the family. “Although I think you are a bit of a bully for making
me
decide. You don’t really think about my feelings too much.”

“I’m just thinking about my stomach
,” Floyd said.

“I don’t suppose
you
people could help me out with this?” Chet asked the family. His question was answered by the sound of water dripping off shredded wall-paper. “Funny. I would think you would have the most opinion on the matter. Let’s see…we could take the father. Couldn’t we Floyd?”

“We could take the father
,” Floyd said.

“Then what will the family do about food?
We will leave them with just the mother and the boy. I don’t want to sound sexist or anything Floyd,” Chet said. He looked at Floyd for reassurance. Floyd waved his hand as if to say that he wasn’t offended. “Men are just the more powerful sex, and this world is just not
hospitable
. It’s just not safe. We take the father, and we take safety.”

“We could take the boy
,” Floyd said. The boy in the corner whimpered at the comment.

“You can’t take my son
,” The woman said.

“It’s too late for you to have an opinion
,” Chet said. “You had your chance to pipe up, and you all played dumb. Now that I know you
can hear me
and
respond
to me, I can write you off as rude. My mother always said it’s polite to respond when someone speaks to you. You are rude, and I don’t care to converse with rude people.” Chet turned from the woman and spoke to Floyd. “We could take the boy, but he won’t provide much of a meal.”

“I may be able to turn the other cheek with your sexist comments Chet
, but I don’t appreciate your ageist statements.” Floyd made a disapproving face.

“Is there even such a thing as that?”
Chet said. “I didn’t know I had such a problem. I guess you’re right Floyd. I don’t like taking the boy based on his age. I tried to cover it up, but, as always, you see right through me. Eating a person makes me feel bad enough. But a child? For whatever reason I feel even worse about that. There is just something so
wrong
with that.”

“Then that leaves the woman
,” Floyd said. “The man can provide for the son. We can’t take the son, because you have moral issues that go deeper than you previously thought. I’m just curious as to the cut-off age Chet. This kid can’t be over six years old. Would you eat a ten year old?”

“Probably not
,” Chet said.

“How about a fifteen year old?”
Floyd asked.

Chet thought for a moment.
“I don’t think I could do that either. Just shut up about it Floyd. I don’t want to talk about it anymore. I think you’re just pestering me, and you know I don’t like it when you pester me for no reason. I am not your sport. I am not your amusement Floyd. Oh, hell, I guess you could say that if they look like that,” Chet gestured desperately at the man and woman in the corner, “I feel okay about eating them. The people I eat have to look like that! I don’t know why and don’t ask me.”

“Would you eat a black person?”
Floyd asked.

“I don’t know.
That’s not fair,” Chet said.

Floyd jabbed Chet in the ribs.
“You are such a racist Chet.”

“No I am not!
I cherish people of every color, and I can name to you right now good personal friends from every race or ethnic background you can think of!”

“I am your only friend Chet.”

“I don’t think it’s so hard to believe that people are more comfortable eating people of their own race. I bet if we had a black guy here right now he would tell you the same thing. He’d probably have us take another look around the place to make sure there wasn’t a black person hiding that we could choose from.”

“Would you let him choose who we ate just because he was black?”
Floyd said.

“No
, it would just add another level to the conversation. It would make this more interesting. Add a little dynamic.”

“It does open up a whole new level of things
,” Floyd said. “We take the woman?”

“We take the woman
,” Chet said. They moved in on the family in the corner. Chet brandished a knife, which kept the man from fighting as they dragged his wife away.

The boy held onto her dress.
Floyd got him off with a kick to the jaw. They gently dragged the woman down the stairs, careful not to bump her head on the steps.

“Did you
have
to kick him Floyd?” Chet said.

“He was hanging on pretty tight.
Next time I’ll try and reason with next time we eat his mom,” Floyd said.

“Not funny Floyd.
You are turning into such a monster.”

Floyd opened the front door and looked up and down the empty streets.
He was happy that no one had followed them there. People were always a problem.

He nodded to Chet
, and they carried the woman outside to the back of the house. The sky was gray with clouds promising rain, but the weather was warm. They had parked their car in the home’s back lawn, covering it with a heavy black tarp. Floyd put down the woman and pulled off the tarp.

“She’s going to take up the whole back seat.
We really need to find something with more room,” Chet said.

“The car
is good on gas. Remember what we had to do to get gas the last time? Feel good we don’t have an Escalade.”

Their car was a beat up 1971 Volkswagen Super Beetle.
Its body was badly dented and rusted. Chet and Floyd had found it while scavenging in a junkyard, looking for wheels. It had been long ago left for dead. The previous owner had chopped it up in a failed attempt at some sort of rat rod. They agreed it was their best choice based on the car’s simplicity alone. It took no time to get the engine working, and the body welded to a functional status. Floyd painted it black and Chet added what he called ‘ambiance’ by spray painting a neon green skull over the frame.

“We could hide it better when it was
all black,” Floyd had said.

“Well it
looks
like a skull. Look at the shape. And we will look tough. No one will mess with us,” Chet said. In the end Floyd didn’t care what the car looked like, just that it worked. The old bug had been incredibly reliable, and, when it did break down, the fix wasn’t too hard to figure out.

Chet had been wrong about people messing with them.
Everybody messed with everybody since the bombing and the Big Death. Supplies and fuel were increasingly hard to come by.

What the car had in reliability it lost in speed.
At best, the 1600cc engine putted along. If someone decided to chase them, they would have no real chance of getting away.

“It would be easier for us if you just got in the car
,” Chet said to the woman. “I don’t want to have to shove you in there. We’ll both probably get hurt.” The woman let out a small groan and crawled into the backseat of the car. “I’m driving Floyd.”

“You always get to drive
,” Floyd said.

“I’m driving Floyd.
Shut up! I’m driving!” Chet pulled a long knife out from his belt. Floyd took a sawed off shotgun out of his and pointed it at Chet.

“See Floydykins.
You ride shotgun since you
have
a shotgun. All I have is this knife. Am I to just stab people if we get into trouble? Or, you could let me hang onto that gun for awhile.”

Floyd put the shotgun back into his belt and got in the car on the passenger side.
“Alright! Let’s go.” Chet put the car into first and took off down the street.

 

Chapter - 2

 

Chet swerved around the debris in the road as he and Floyd made their way back to their current home. They had recently taken residence in an old tobacco shop. The store was made of solid brick; the owner used to live in a small apartment over the store. Chet and Floyd liked to think that it was the place’s solid structure that made them decide to stay there, but in reality they were tobacco freaks. They thought the owner had a secret stash of cigars somewhere that they could uncover and enjoy.

The place had been well looted before they got there, but even
so, people left items behind. However, they had been there for a few days and had yet to find anything. Floyd assured Chet that he could smell what they were looking for. He could almost feel those luxurious wrappers nearly bursting with lovely, lovely tobacco.

Being nomadic kept them alive, but t
he promise of smokes kept them lingering at the old shop.

On their way there Chet and Floyd were discu
ssing what to do with the woman. “I don’t think that’s the way to do it,” Floyd said. “It doesn’t sound humanitarian.”

“Drowning is the best possible way to die.
I hear it is very peaceful,” Chet said.

“I’ve heard that too
, and I don’t have any idea what the hell that means. I don’t think it sounds very peaceful. I’ve been under water for too long, and I don’t remember feeling peace, just scared as hell.”

“What do you suggest?”
Chet said.

“Just hit her over the head with a club or something.
Kill her quick.”

“What if you miss? What if you don’t hit her hard enough
? I need something that works for sure. I don’t want her to
suffer
any,” Chet said.

“We could shoot her.
That would be pretty sure but the sound would probably draw people.” Chet thought that Floyd was right about that. Shots always drew attention and company. If you heard one bullet you assumed the person firing had more. It was natural that you would go and try and get them.

“We could take an axe and chop her head off
,” Chet said.

“I hear that the person stays alive for at least fifteen seconds after their head is chopped off.
Horrifying,” Floyd said.

“Drugs.
We could kill her with sleeping pills or ether or something,” Chet said.

“Good luck finding any
, and I don’t like the idea of force feeding someone all those pills,” Floyd said.

Chet put the car into a lower gear as he rumbled over a particularly rough patch of broken road.
He turned the corner to the old tobacco store and parked the car in the back of the building. When all of them were out, Floyd covered the Super Beetle with the black tarp he pulled out of the hood storage of the car.

“You wouldn’t have anything to say about this would you?”
Chet asked the woman.

“I don’t want to be killed at all
,” She said.

“That is not a choice
,” Chet said to the woman, wagging his finger like he was disciplining a child. “You’re going to die, we just want to make sure it doesn’t hurt you or cause you any emotional discomfort. I would feel better if you lay down and died like I remember in fairy tales. Where the beautiful princess lays down in a bed of flowers and passes with a sweet smile on her face.”

Chet snapped out of his reverie of princesses and flowers to see the bedraggled woman in front of him.
He frowned. His belly was so empty it felt like it pulled inward toward his spine, making him scared his ribs would pierce through his skin. “I guess you don’t have an opinion. We’ll use my knife.” Chet pulled the long blade out of his belt and held it out to Floyd hilt first. “Here you go Floyd.”

“What do you mean ‘Here you go Floyd’?
You don’t think I’m going to kill her do you?” Floyd said.

“I most certainly do think you are going to kill her!
I most certainly do Floyd!” Chet shook the blade hilt at him, nearly bumping Floyd on the nose.

“I’m not going to kill her.
This was your idea,” Floyd said.

“I don’t know why I even
have
you around when I do all the work around here,” Chet said. “We are both starving and in a rather desperate spot. All we’ve been doing is looking for tobacco when we should have been looking for food. This is no time for luxury. This is the time for sustenance. We’ve run out of options. Eating a person was my idea. Taking the woman was my idea. How to kill her was my idea. You haven’t done anything! Take the knife.”

“No.
I just don’t think I can do it,” Floyd said.

“Shoot her then
,” Chet said.

“No.”

“Yes!”

“I will shoot you Chet.
How would you like that? Don’t pester me, or I’ll shoot your stupid face off. I’m not killing that woman. If you want to do it, go ahead. Just leave me out of it.”

“Okay, Henny Penny, I’ll do it.
Just don’t expect to eat the bread when I’m done. You did not help me Floyd. I am a man alone on this one,” Chet said. He held the knife toward the woman. “Could you not look at me?” he said to the woman. “Could you just turn your head a bit? Thanks.”

Chet
took a few practice swipes at the woman, but in the end he shoved the knife back in his belt and sat against their car with a dejected look. “I’m hungry Floyd.”

“You can’t be that hungry.
You’re letting our food go,” Floyd said.

“We’re both letting her go.
We aren’t animals Floydems. We would rather keep our human morality and starve than go to hell for cutting our teeth on human flesh. I don’t think I really could have eaten her anyway. It would have been worse to kill her and then not be able to eat her.”

“I agree
,” Floyd said.

The woman looked confused.
“Can I go?” she asked.

“You can go
,” Floyd said. She didn’t waste another second as she stood up and ran out of the shop.

“Chet?”
Floyd felt sorry for his friend who looked so glum.

“Yeah Floyd?”

“I just want you to know that if I die first you can feel free to eat me guilt-free. I disavow you of any issues of morality, social justice or purgatory.”

“Thanks, Floyd
,” Chet said. “That means a lot. So what do we do now?” Chet asked. Before Floyd could answer him, the woman’s screams erupted from the front yard.

 

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