Teeth

Bumper to bumper cars all left to rot in their own decay and not a single bite to eat. A infestation of vein like weeds curled up the carved sides of a minivan and their pointed leaves dug into my skin as I struggled to wrench the rust caked door open. Heat beat the back of my neck with hungry kisses and I stumbled in my exhaustion.

Struggling to think straight, I had almost lapsed into a moment of conversation with a lonely skeleton. It's empty soulless eyes and well carved cheek bones. The dress it once wore alive hung limp off it's meatless shoulders. Is it right to call it an it or is 'it' still a she, I thought.

A torturous breeze cooed at the fabric of my clothes. I stumbled again and place my weight against the car. “I'm going to die,” I tell myself, forgetting to add the: if I don't eat anything. I'm afraid to rest. Afraid that I won't wake up again. My eyes dragged along the cracks in the concrete and settle on his figure. Sid never looked so sick. His skin was bone white and darkened circles were forming under his tired black eyes. Strings of sweaty black hair pasted against his forehead now, making him look even more sickly. A dribble of dried blood was creeping down from the makeshift bandages on his leg. I have to move, I tell my reluctant body.


“Don't go to far,” Sid calls hoarsely to me but I don't reply. I'm too focused on the brick of a breakfast bar in the waste bag of a dried out sports car. I ripped at the doors glued down with rust. It won't budge, I saw. “The universe hates me,” I scream and kick. I was being stupid but its too late to go back. I need something to eat. Even if I don't eat anything, the small bottle of water I had finished off wouldn't last me long.

I ripped a rock from the cracked soil on the side of the road and the glass cracks from the impact. It showers to the ground. There's a squeal and I realize its the alarm sounding. Not good, too much attention. I hear Sid yelling at me to shut it off. I rip the bar from the bag and push every button on the dashboard. “Oh crap, oh crap,” I'm so dead.

With a beckoning cry, the alarm falls to a tiny wail and then nothing. The battery finally dead. My legs shook beneath me and a new sheen of sweat coat my fingers. I struggle to hold onto the bar which feels like a rock in my hand. I'm sighing with relief when I hear the noise of scuffing feet but it's too late to change what I did.

A body slams against my own and my skull smacks against the concrete. I'm struggling and screaming. Fingers dig into my flesh and teeth flash before my eyes. I see the torn skin and bloody gums. His gaunt features and dead beat eyes, an infected. My foot connects with it's chest but it holds strong. Every bite bringing his teeth closer to my skin. A pinch, all that's necessary to infect me. Just a break in the skin and his blood in mine.

I feel the burn of his skin against my own. It's ripe with infection and blisters of disease boiling off its pasty flesh. I'm a goner, I realize and my muscles go slack for an instant. A single thought that seems to drive the fight out of me. I know I'm already dead when the Infected man is ripped away from me. Sid dragged him against the cement like a dog. Despite his lacking strength, he takes the Infected man's neck and snaps it. Whatever glow lay left in it's eyes were gone now.

“Are you okay?” Sid asks but I don't answer. I was too weak. I look at the inflamed ring of needle sharp incisions on the underside of my wrist. I was too weak to even save myself. It doesn't matter anymore, I'm already dead. I've been bitten by an infected.





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