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Short Story from 2011

In 2011 I won 2nd place in a Halloween short story contest sponsored by Renderosity.The theme of the contest was Zombie Apocalypse. Later, after watching an episode of Walking Dead I realized that the content of the story was very similar to the predicament of Morgan Jones, the man faced with the sight of his dead wife walking around. I was annoyed with myself thinking that I unintentionally plagiarized. Ah well, you tell me if it is too close.

The story has two titles; "Your sweet and Loving Face" and "Love Letter." I feel the former title is better. Anyhoo, here is "Your Sweet and Loving Love Letter." Or make up your own title.


There is so much I wanted to say to you, but now that is impossible. If only you had told me that you'd been bitten. Maybe you didn't realize it when it happened. There just was so much confusion.

I know it isn't you out there. But I can not destroy that which has your face. I hear you...I mean that thing, shuffling around the house. It moves from the laundry room to the living room, then through the kitchen to the base of the stairs before repeating the pattern, as if mimicking your actions from life. Sometimes, it is quiet and I've peeked out the door to see it in the hallway simply swaying side to side in the dark. One time, I was awakened by noise from the kitchen; I honestly believe it was going through the motions to make coffee.

I know that it isn't you. I refused then to acknowledge that fact when you … it did those things. I guess I went a little crazy, believing that I was defending my woman from attack. It's all just a big mess.

Okay, here's what happened, baby.

We went with the neighbors to Chester Street see what was going on and ran into a pack of the damned things. Harry swung his baseball bat around like a drunken madman. Joan with her crowbar proved to be lethal to the things. But there were so many. Never dreamed that the things would make their way this far from the disaster center. They swarmed Fred and Billy right before the cavalry came. The rest of us just ran from the attack as the National Guard bellowed out the orders over the gunfire to go home and lock the doors. We ran, all right.

I should have known, when you said you were so tired. How pale you looked, how dazed your expression, but you said that you only needed to lay down. We sent Julie back home, you went to lie with the baby, you acted so tired, why would I think otherwise. The nearby gunfire echoed outside. I loudly said that it sounded like popcorn being popped, just so you could hear me from the other room. Were you already gone at that point? Did you hear me at all?

A few minutes later, I came in to check on you and found … what you … it … did to our daughter. You were … it was … eating her little … the blood was just so … so much blood everywhere. It wasn't you, I know that. I screamed, though. For a long time, I screamed.

I ran outside. The neighbors came. You … it, damnit, that thing followed. But I only saw your face, even though its lips were covered in our baby's blood, there was only your face. I had to believe that under those dull eyes, under all that bloody mess, you were hidden underneath. That I could dig you out and somehow save you.

Harry freaked. He charged with his bat held high. Understand babe, I only saw you, not it. My little .38 was still in my pocket. I fired. Joan freaked. Everyone freaked. I shot and shot and shot. I was protecting you, babe. That was the only thought in my head; that I was protecting you.

The outside has been quiet for a while. No more popcorn. I wonder who won on Chester Street? I wonder if the thing with your face will ever walk up the stairs to our bedroom. I'm waiting up here in case it does. Not sure what I will do if it does. It's not you, babe. But it has your sweet face.

It has your sweet loving face.


what hell
Eldon Litchfield

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