Author’s Note: some crass language ahead.
Todd spent thirteen days curled in the fetal position. His blanket covered his head. He clutched his pillow to his chest. He never moved for thirteen days.
The zombie apocalypse started on the day his parents had gone grocery shopping. The same morning his parents had left, Todd started to believe thieves were attacking his neighbors. He could tell by the sound of breaking glass and the follow up screams. It wasn’t until he looked out the window he discovered the truth:
A young man ran down the block. He paused to catch his breath. He looked around frantically, and, seeing no danger, he relaxed. Then six men jumped on the high school student. But they didn’t look like men. They were dead. Falling apart. Zombies.
Todd stopped sleeping after that. The worst part, the part Todd couldn’t get out of his mind, was how nothing was left when the zombies disappeared. They had eaten bones. They drank every last liter of blood. Nothing had remained of the high schooler.
Eventually, Todd started to doubt his parents were alive. His suspicions were confirmed when Monday rolled around. His thinking was if his mother wasn’t going to tell him to go to school, she must be dead.
So Todd stayed in bed. He grabbed his favorite pillow and threw the blanket over his head. Night and day strange sounds would drift around him. Sometimes there were voices, kind voices that often shouted real words before they succumbed to screams.
At one point, a man screamed just outside Todd’s window. The man’s bones broke into splinters. Todd heard every bone crunch and every slurp of blood as though it were happening right in front of him.
He tried to think of happy thoughts at first. He thought about his favorite TV shows, but remembered the TV didn’t work. Then he thought about playing in the park with his friends, but remembered he couldn’t go outside. And he couldn’t call his friends. And maybe some of them wouldn’t have answered anyway.
One night a brick sailed through his bedroom window. He kept the blanket over his head and held his breath. The man who threw the brick pulled out the excess window glass and then threw those pieces on the ground. Each piece shattered echoes into the night. Todd knew the man was making too much noise because the second time Todd had peered out the window he noticed something strange:
Zombies ran around the streets flailing and killing, but they never noticed the little human girl sitting under a tree. She had her head in her hands and a towel over her legs. It wasn’t until she said ‘mommy’ that the zombies noticed her. And ate her. Limb by limb.
So whoever was breaking into Todd’s house was an idiot.
Voices proved the idiot was human, for he said, “okay man, looks clear.”
Then he jumped through the window and landed with a thud. Another thud told Todd there were two of them. Two idiots.
“Shit dude. This is a kid’s room!” The first one said.
“Yeah. Fucked up,” said the other.
They walked past Todd’s bed to the door.
“Wait. What if someone’s already living here?” The second guy asked.
“I’ve been watching this place for the last few days. No one’s gone in or out,” the first one replied.
The men opened the door. It creaked against it’s hinges. Before they walked out of Todd’s room, a zombie jumped through the window and attacked them.
Todd stayed firmly under the covers, shaking but silent. One of the men’s heads landed on top of Todd. Blood oozed through the blanket. The struggle was short. The feast was long. But by the time it ended, Todd had remained alive. He didn’t move from his curled position until two mornings later when he heard the zombie finally leave.
When the zombie was gone, Todd ran to the kitchen and grabbed three bottles of water. He knew eating food would be too noisy. Then he returned to his bed, threw the covers over his head, and let go of his mind.
Todd was found by the military two weeks later. His hip had atrophied. Fear that the bed would creak had kept him perfectly still. The military men were shocked when they found the water bottles: only one of the three had been drunk. Physically, the boy could have lasted two more weeks. Mentally, though, he was as lost as a zombie.