The rain poured down, sheets of gray hammering the asphalt. Eddie lay splayed out under the truck out of the storm, his wounds gory but not bleeding. Eddie stirred, moaning a low moan. He got to his hands and knees and crawled out from under the truck. He had no memory of how he got there. His only sensation was one of a gnawing hunger that caused him to lumber forward, towards the cab.

When he got there he tore the side door clean off the truck. He grabbed the trucker’s leg and pulled. The trucker, who had been dozing, awoke to a living nightmare. “Get off me!” he shouted. He fumbled with his shotgun but didn’t get it aimed quick enough. Eddie had already bitten into his ankle. A freezing sensation spread up his leg and, after he kicked Eddie away, he felt a gnawing hunger and new numbness in his brain.

Soon the two of them staggered together toward the truck stop diner as the rain was easing off. The trucker’s dog had leapt down from the cab and ran circles around them, wondering why they were moving so slowly. The trucker moaned, swiping at him and the dog took off running.

When Eddie got about twenty feet from the diner a bearded man with a plaid shirt raised a shotgun and pulled the trigger. Eddie’s head exploded, blood spattering onto the trucker beside him. The bearded man fired again. Eddie’s head was blown off completely, blood trickling down from his neck. “Hey,” the bearded man exclaimed. “I thought blowing their heads off was supposed to kill ‘em– AAAAAARRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHH—EEEIIIIGGGHHH!!!” And headless Eddie tore the shotgun away from him, simultaneously ripping the man’s arm off. Soon the his eyes turned yellow and bloodshot like Eddie’s and now the three of them lumbered into the diner full of screaming patrons.

There was a volley of gunfire but it didn’t stop the three from trudging slowly forward, even as holes were blown right through them. Soon, after much biting and scratching, they had recruited a sizable crowd of lumbering, moaning patrons and together they moved out toward the gas station.

Larry, the teen at the register, saw them coming. “Z’s,” he muttered. Cigarette hanging from his mouth, he ran over to one of the pumps and sprayed gas everywhere. When the crowd came towards him, he sprayed it on them. Then he dropped his cigarette and dove for cover as a huge mushroom cloud of fire exploded behind him. The force of the explosion threw him and, as the zombies behind were engulfed and incinerated, he tumbled in what felt like slow motion, finally landing some fifty feet away.

When the smoke cleared Larry got painfully to his feet. It began raining again. He limped back to his ’87 Tercel and lit up another cigarette when he got inside. He got the windshield wipers going and stared out at the charred lumps and ashes where small fires still burned here and there.

He started up the engine and, death metal blaring from his cheap speakers, he pulled onto the freeway. Swerving recklessly through the traffic, rain pouring down, a grin spread across his face. For the first time in months it felt good to be alive.

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