With a loud hissing bang, the truck rattled and a large piece of smoking rubber flew past the driver’s side window and away into the dust of the passing road. Jesse’s hands gripped the wheel to steady the vehicle as it skid to a crooked halt in the middle of the otherwise deserted road.
“Are you ok?”, Jesse asked his girlfriend Shauna, who was in the passenger’s seat holding onto the shoulder strap of her seatbelt like it was a snake she was trying to strangle. She nodded frantically.
They already knew there was no spare tire so, grabbing their bags, they both exited the truck and started on foot. The road they were on was long and dusty, with nothing to see in any direction but bare fields and broken fences. They walked for most of the day before coming upon a quiet farmhouse.
The land was surrounded by a four foot wire fence, but it was broken in many places. Jesse and Shauna went over it, moving closer to the house. The farm appeared to have had animals at one point. Several nearly skeletal cow carcasses were scattered around the several acres of land. The couple came up to the back of a large, grey barn and hide behind it while they listened for any sounds of potential danger.
After several minutes of surveillance, the two decided to move in towards the house. They crept slowly up to the front door and looked through the windows. The inside of the house was dark and quiet, so Jesse tried the door. The handle turned and Jesse pushed the door open carefully. He let it swing open all the way and waited a moment. The house remained quiet. The floorboards creaked as they stepped in and looked around.
It was an old house, by the looks of it. The furniture was mostly vintage and there were very few electronics. Hung all around the walls were paintings of old time circus clowns. Only they were sad, all of them in the throws of lament as they carried on their jesting. The more Shauna looked around at them all, the more uneasy she became.
“Let’s look for supplies and get out of here. This place gives me the creeps.” She told Jesse, who looked at the paintings and laughed. He had always found her fear of clowns amusing.
The two did a quick check of the rest of the house before heading into the kitchen. Jesse searched through cabinets while Shauna looked in all the draws and the closets in the livingroom. Together they found nothing but a broken flashlight and an unusual amount of ballpoint pens. Not to be deterred, they headed upstairs in hopes that there may be some food in one of the bedrooms.
There were three bedrooms and a bathroom upstairs. The bathroom door was closed, and the smell that seeped through the gaps in the frame warned that it was probably better to leave it that way. Jesse went to search the master bedroom while Shauna headed into one of the other rooms. The room Shauna entered had clearly belonged to a child. All along the walls hung framed posters of comic book covers, and there were action figures and hot wheels everywhere. There was a dresser, all the drawers of which were full of children’s books and stickers. Jesse suddenly yelled for Shauna to come to the master bedroom. She entered the room and saw him at the closet.
“What’s up? Did you find anything?” She asked.
“Check it out.” Jesse replied, pointing into the closet.
There, sitting still wrapped in plastic and topped with a bow, were two Easter baskets with large chocolate bunnies inside.
“You think they are still good?” Jesse asked Shauna.
“I don’t know.” she replied, “Doesn’t chocolate take a while to go bad?”
Jesse thought about it, “I have no idea, but I can recall several times I have eaten Halloween candy that may or may not have been from several Halloweens ago and I was always fine, so…”
They both thought about it a moment. “What the hell, right?” Shauna said, shrugging and grabbing a basket. Jesse grabbed the other and they both ripped off the plastic wrapping. The bunnies looked edible enough, as did the rest of the candy inside, so the couple decided to go for it and fill their aching bellies. After consuming nearly an entire chocolate bunny each, they sat back feeling very satisfied for the first time in a while.
The sun was beginning to set and the barren fields were becoming more ominous by the minute. Shauna yawned as she gazed out the window at the darkening horizon.
“Maybe we should stay here until morning? It’s safer.” She suggested.
Jesse agree, “Let’s sleep downstairs though. The smell coming from that bathroom is awful.”
They agreed and moved downstairs, setting up a bed for themselves on the livingroom floor in front of the fireplace. Jesse checked to see if the fireplace worked and then lit a fire with some wood that was in a metal cradle next to them. The fire was warm and relaxing. They cuddled next to each other, enjoying their peace, and eventually fell asleep.
A few hours later, a loud creak woke Shauna. The house was dark, the fire only embers now. She rubbed her eyes and blinked several times, allowing them to adjust to the darkness. The creaking suddenly came again, from the kitchen. She grabbed the fire poker as she stood up and tiptoed past the couch, and into the dining room. Listening carefully, she heard the floorboards in the kitchen creaking more and felt a sudden breeze fly through the house. Her feet landed carefully with each step, trying to stay as quiet as possible, she moved slowly into the kitchen.
The house was very dark and it was hard to see, even after her eyes adjusted. As she came into the kitchen she saw that it was illuminated by moonlight, and quickly realized that the back door was wide open. At that same moment Shauna saw a shadow move in the corner of her eye. She turned around quickly, swinging the fire poker across the empty air. Looking around for second and seeing nothing, she turned back towards the door.
Jesse woke with a start at the sound of Shauna’s scream. He jumped to his feet and smacked his head on the mantle of the fireplace. Groaning in pain and barely able to see in the dark, Jesse stumbled into the kitchen looking for Shauna. When he got to the kitchen he saw Shauna pushing an undead man with a missing arm to the floor and smashing his head with the fire poker. He took another step towards her, but his head was still pounding from when he hit it. He brought his hand up to touch his head and felt the wetness of a wound. Touching it, he groaned from the sharp pain it caused.
As Shauna regained her footing after taking down the undead man, she heard behind her the loud groan of another zombie. On instinct, she neglected to hesitate and turning with her weapon out, she swung hard at the zombie.
“OH SHIT!!” as soon as the curved side spike of the fire poker sank into the temple of the zombie, Shauna realized it was not actually a zombie at all, but Jesse.
She let go of the poker and stumbled backward before thrusting forward to catch Jesse as he collapsed. Jesse’s eyes were half closed and he was twitching. Shauna frantically pulled the poker from the side of his head. Blood poured from the wound as she tried to hold it closed with her hand.
“Fuck, fuck, fuck! No, no! Please no!” Shauna sobbed as she looked around trying to figure out a way to stop the bleeding.
It was too late. Jesse’s twitching turned into convulsions and foam filled his mouth. Shauna turned him to his side, but he was already gone. He stopped moving and lay limp in a puddle of blood and spit. Shauna sobbed, pushing herself backward against the counter and rocking back and forth. She had only a second to grieve before she heard the door slam against the wall, causing her to jump to her feet. An undead woman covered completely in mud, with several large chunks missing from her torso and legs, staggered in through the open door.
Shauna grabbed the poker and ran towards the front door. Bursting outside and sprinting down the front stairs, she looked around to see a dozen or so undead wandering towards the house from the nearby woods. They all saw her as well and with deathly moans, turned and started towards her. She looked around, trying to decide which way to run. The moaning seemed to be attracting even more zombies. Shauna saw several coming both out of the nearby forest and from the other side of the road. After a few moments of running around the house, she realized there was nowhere to run that she wasn’t going to have to dodge several undead, and she was not sure she could make it. The only other option in her mind was to try and hide and hope they eventually gave up and wandered off. Shauna looked over at the barn they had hide behind when they first arrived. There were no zombies around the entrance, so Shauna made a run for it. She got inside the barn and closed the large doors behind her, slamming down a long piece of wood to secure them.
Shauna breathed, feeling safe for the moment, and turned to survey the inside of the barn. Bright blue beams of moonlight shone in through cracks in the roof and walls, making smalls spots in the barn visible in the darkness. Shauna leaned back against a stack of wood and suddenly heard what sounded like tiny feet scampering around, followed by a dull chattering. She stood back up and looked around, trying to see in the dark places. The noises were getting louder and closer, like they were closing in around her. Shauna looked around frantically searching for the source of the sounds. Her eyes stopped on a small spot that was illuminated by the moonlight. As she leaned forward to see better, a rather large white rabbit stepped into the light.
The rabbit, which was the size of a small cat, was very mangy and it’s eye’s looked red. It’s two front teeth stuck out of it’s mouth and were stained red with blood, as was its nose and ears. It made a low, chattering growl as it took a hop towards Shauna, who jumped back startled and fell over. The chattering was louder than ever and all around. Looking around at the numerous spots of moonlight, she saw more of the rabbits hopping towards her, all looking as grotesque as the first. She stood up quickly and raised her weapon, turning in circles. The low, chattering growl grew to a deafening volume as the blood toothed rabbits closed in on Shauna. She swung the poker, hitting two rabbits and sending them flying sideways. The rest of them pounced onto her legs and began clawing and biting at the ankles and calves until she collapsed.
Shauna screamed as the tiny, sharp teeth of the rabbits tore into her flesh and burrowed down into her stomach, spilling blood and intestines in a stream around her. She continued to scream and struggle as the rabbits ripped away her lips and stabbed their front teeth into her eyeballs. As several rabbits burrowed deeper into her chest cavity she finally faded into death.