Secondhand

It was a litany for the pair of them, Bobby Christopher and his brother, whose name I don't remember: Fenwick and that gas mask, man. Don't he know this shit ain't airborne? Hasn't he seen the movies? And what the fuck kind of gay-ass name is Fenwick?

Fenwick just ignored them. He'd seen a lot of people turn that first weekend without having gotten bit and come to his own conclusions. He only took the mask off to eat, and he did that away from the group.

The brothers would taunt him, sometimes. We'd be clearing a house, everybody with shotgun or crossbow or whatever at the ready: "Hey, Fenwick, go ahead and go first. You're the one with the gas mask." And he'd do it. He never sassed back. I don't know if it was because he didn't want to risk it or what. After a while, Fenwick going first was just the way we did things.

Of course, he got lots of kills that way, and first dibs on the scavenge too; that didn't sit well with Bobby Christopher. Why the fuck does fucking Fenwick get the only solar iPhone charger? Man, I want to listen to some music too. It never occurred to him to simply ask to borrow it.

Things got tense. It'd happened before. Usually somebody would just be gone one morning: taken whatever they'd brought in and climbed down off of whatever roof we were on and walked away. But Fenwick wasn't going anywhere, and neither was Bobby Christopher or his brother.

It was the used bookstore that ended it. Fenwick wanted something new to read; nobody really cared enough to talk him out of it, much less go in with him. People are expected to use their own judgment.

He came out, he'd been bit. Nobody really said anything. Bobby Christopher managed, "That sucks, bro."

Fenwick gave him the charger and the mask, and then went back inside the bookstore and locked the door behind him.

22 comments:

  1. Poor Fenwick. Now, if zombies were gaseous, he would have been right on the money!
    My uncle once gave my brother and my cousin gas masks that he bought at an army surplus store. I bet anything my brother still has that thing hanging around somewhere!

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  2. Well, that's creepy. Bummer that it was the bookstore that did him in. I think bookstores should be zombie-free zones.

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    1. Especially used bookstores that smell like vanilla. :-)

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  3. Fucking Fenwick and a book store of all places.

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  4. I enjoyed this. It has a Walking Dead feel to it. That does suck about Fenwick, but I'd be pretty jazzed to get that charger.

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    1. Thanks! Yeah, that thing's worth it's weight in gold after the apocalypse.

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  5. I thoroughly enjoyed this, I thought your use of details was terrific and really created this world. And hey, if your going to go, I can't think of a better place than a bookstore.

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    1. Exactly. At least he can read until he succumbs to the virus...

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  6. Cool set-up, and I agree that a bookstore makes for a terrific zombie cemetery.

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    1. all those twists and turns and blind corners...

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  7. I love the cool, kind of hip way you wrote it. It has a great flow, matter of fact, and you want to stay in the world with them (well, sort of, on paper). And like others have said - yes on the bookstore if you've got to end it. Nice writing!

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  8. If I was going out I'd definitely go in a bookstore or library.
    Awesome piece.

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  9. Ah,for the love of books-I am totally with Fenwick here :-)A great piece with wonderful nips ;-)

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  10. I'm with Whispatory. :) I think this was fantastic - your language & voice were perfect. I love that you stuck to one PoV. It would have been easy to slip and tell us what actually going on in Fenwick's head.

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  11. What a tragic bit of irony. This is well-written.
    Thank you for linking up!

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