Authors: Eric A. Shelman
Tags: #zombie apocalypse
Eric A. Shelman
By Eric A. Shelman
Dead Hunger is a work of fiction By
Eric A. Shelman
All characters contained herein are fictional, and all similarities to persons living or dead
This text cannot be copied or duplicated without author or publisher written permission.
©2011 Dolphin Moon Publishing
Cover Art By Gary McCluskey
Jamie Leighton. Redhead, 5’8” tall. Fair skin, slight build. Pretty green eyes, and long fingers.
Anything – no, everything – but ordinary. But to the casual observer,
nothing extraordinary about her. Most of the time she was
to her husband Jack,
to her two girls,
, 8, and Trina
, 6, and she was
just beautiful to me. I miss her.
When she first
, the aftermath was terrifying. I swore I’d
her if it was the last thing I ever did. Turns out it wasn’
the last thing or the first thing or any goddamned thing
there was and is
a shitload of stuff to do and it never seems to get to be a smaller shitload.
I’m Flex Sheridan. Jamie used to share my last name with me.
I’ll tell you how this started
. It’ll introduce you to me and my friends, but your guess will be as good as mine as to what comes next for us in this bizarre new world
. Any other time I’d sound crazy as shit, but if you’re reading this, then you know I’m not.
The dead have risen. Either that or they never
quite made it into the ground, but either way
I’ll tell you this: They’re out there and they are
And getting hungrier every day.
They are persistent. And they have more ingenuity
than I’d have ever given them credit for in the beginning.
And they have some abilities that concern us greatly.
I’d started using the term
to describe them
one of them. As much as I knew they were similar to – fuck that, they
zombies and there’s no way to get around it – I couldn’t bear calling them that name. It seemed to be disrespectful to my sister. Hemp and Gem humored me in that respect
initially, but we all eventually gave up the ruse. Zombies they were, and zombies they would ever be until intense brain trauma.
But even in the beginning,
in the heat of a good fight, we all slipped
the Z word
occasionally. I sure as hell didn’t treat any of
these zombies with any semblance of the kindness that I gave my sister. Not even close. And my sister was so
my sister anymore.
to use the word
ombie, because I don’t want to give this recount of
experiences anything like a comic feel. There’s nothing funny about it, and again – if you’re alive to read this, then you know that already. There is not much laughing going on these days.
Nowadays the only person who
make me laugh is Gem.
is her full name, but she hates it. Says
sounds like a syrup spokesperson. So she goes by Gem, which is fine by me, because she is
precious gem, that’s for sure.
She’s out rounding up supplies
right now. You might wonder, in a world where zombie-like creature
s are wandering the earth, why
I’d let her go
with someone else besides me
. That’s because you don’t know Gem
, and you don’t know Charlie
. If you did, you wouldn’t wonder. I’m wearing the other half of our two-ways, and if
trouble, I’ll get a double-tap on the talk button. That means
run into some of
. If I get a triple tap next, that means
by bullet or arrow,
and we’re back to cool.
But if I get a single tap first, or after the double tap, that means COME NOW WE’RE FUCKED and that means no time for punctuation or mixed case letters.
We carry automatic weapons
and other fun toys,
and we’ve got
experience using them.
Heck, we’re even teaching the six-year-old how to handle a gun,
she’s coming along
. Nonetheless, n
have gotten killed or wounded yet, and we’re skilled enough that w
e don’t waste a lot of ammo
Fuck if I didn’t
knock on some wood after I wrote that just now.
If I hear a single
tap on that walkie
, or even
I heard one, then as many of us as are left at the base
head out fast. We have an itinerary. I know where
going. We have flare guns, too. I know where to look and when I see the flare, I head for it. Our vehicles are fortified and fast, and we make good time.
always heavily armed
when we’re out in the wild world.
We got each other’s backs. In this world, you need a partner or you’re dead. Gem is mine. And I’m hers.
And now we have little Trina and of course Bunsen and her brood. But that’ll come later. That part should be told a little at a time.
Hemphill Chatsworth is
of us, part of our posse, if you will
. He goes by Hemp and he’s British. That doesn’t mean anything to you or me, but I’m telling you to explain his name.
definitely not southern born.
32 years old and he’s
a scientist. He’s got two degrees that have come in very handy since the plague, or whatever you want to call it
came along. He’s got a Biology degree with a major in Epidemiology. He couldn’t have gotten that shit more perfect except that he also got his Engineering degree. Mechanical engineering. So not only did the son-of-a-bitch want to know how the human body worked, he wanted to know how machines wo
rked and how to design them. His mind works in images. We talk about something we need –
something to wipe out large numbers of zombies
at once, and he visualizes it; creates it in his mind. We’ve yet to build any of them, but Gem, our resident artist, has laid out some sketches of his equipment, and I know they’ll be effective. These raw
his mind’s eye, and Gem’s hands help make them a buildable reality.
two degrees, c
learly his parents had too much money, but now he’s
mine and Gem’s, and nobody
try to take him away from us.
And it’s only
we met. But i
f he tries to leave, we’ll either follow him or kill him.
Okay, I’m kidding there. Killing him would do no good, but that’s how strongly we feel about Hemp. We’ve got a good partnership, though, and if he needs something, Gem and I are going to do our damndest to get it for him.
Either way, he’s not going anywhere without us.
The guy is a genius, and we can use a good genius for like – forever.
Go ahead. Picture him. Y
ou’ll be wrong. The
guy looks just like a So-Cal surfer. He’s
”, sandy blonde hair, muscular. His father was
half Irish and half Indian
, so he has dark skin, but his mother was a
petite blonde, so he’s got that to
head thing going on. And
he got his mom’s
blue eyes. So far he’s
, but it looks like that’s about to change
. The right woman
for a guy is definitely
harder to come by these days, but Gem and I
king that’s worked itself out.
Yep. Charlie’s a girl. I think I’d like to tell that part of the story in order, too.
But suffice it to say she loves her heavy metal rock, she is proficient with a crossbow, and we’re pretty sure that Hemp digs her. And besides that, Gem and I are convinced that her apprenticeship with Hemp in the lab isn’t solely because she has a fascination with science.
So you’ll meet
without a woman,
his lab, and it
is his world. Like a kid at
, he has to force himself to leave it
, or be dragged out
No radio taps
so far, and that’s good. If
they double tap
I won’t be
good for shit until the triple comes. In fact, I’m
to jump out of my skin and in
Gem and Charlie are
, Hemp’s in the mobile lab,
and I’m working on this, you ought to get to know me.
I’m writing this down, and I’m trying to include all the words exchanged between us along the way so you can see how we dealt with things. This was all new, so we had nothing at all
to base how we should react to anything that happened.
Now, we’ve got lots to do
, so there’s not a ton of time for me to get into the beginning of this – well,
beginning. Everyone’s is different. Equally horrible, I’m sure – I don’t have any copyright on that shit – but different.
With a name like Flex, people remember me.
But just because of the name. Physically,
I’m nothing too oddball. S
ix feet tall, m
edium build. 45 years old. I got a square jaw and a goatee
, green eyes
. I keep my hair trimmed short because Gem or I do the cutting and it’s easier.
Overall, I’m your generic