The Second Round
Call me Zombie.
It was hard to see beyond the grime in the windows. For Shavian, it didn’t matter. Beyond those thin panes it was hell on earth and she didn’t see the point in cleaning them.
The house was surrounded by… them. They bounded the place in demon- infused death. As long as she stayed inside she’d live. Not safe, but alive. Here in her castle. Her prison. She’d become the princess in the tower.
No, that didn’t work. It assumed someone would come and rescue her. No one was coming. The only people that knew she was alive had escaped and headed back to Washington where it was still safe. She’d chosen to kill Jackson and be left behind. They succeeded and she’d failed. Now her closest ally was her biggest threat and captor.
“Elliott you moron, this is your fault.” She fogged the glass with her words before stepping back. They’d been staying in an abandoned house for the last week.
The Baron. Not “Baron”, but “THE Baron”. He refused to be called anything else. He’d opened the front door of the house and growled the undead back. “You’ll be safe in here,” he’d said.
By “safe” he really meant prisoner. She’d been tired, depressed and wishing for it all to be over, she walked in and collapsed into bed. When she awoke, the Baron told her she’d been sleeping for “some time.” She guessed it was more than two days. She woke with a massive headache and a hunger that only ebbed after three cans of corn.
Shavian rubbed her stomach at the memory of sitting on the floor of the kitchen with a can opener and a crate of cans. She still hadn’t recovered from that. Turning, she faced the Baron who stood in the doorway. She had known he’d be there. He might have been a master of stealth, moving about the house silently. But it didn’t work on her, she could feel when he came and went. She could feel all of them, actually. She wasn’t sure if it was a God- given gift or if Irons has actually done something to her after all. Either way she was only starting to understand this new gift.
“So,” she growled, “how much longer are you going to keep us here?”
He smiled. The bloodstains on his teeth said he’d been feeding. He took his monocle off and rubbed it on his velvet jacket before placing it in a pocket. “Not long now, poppet.”
Shavian clinched her fists at her sides, “I have told you. Do not call me that.”
He ignored her and continued to talk. “The men, they grow restless. We will move east soon. Collecting more as we march.”
“And why on God’s green earth do you need me for any of this?” She reached into the back of her pants, the medical scrubs she still wore. The pistol was still there. He’d not taken it and she’d not used it on him because that would be suicide. He was the only thing between the demons and her. If she killed him, they’d storm the house and eat her alive. They saw him as their leader or maybe just their controller. However you wanted to look at it.
“Irons was right,” he said. Walking into the room. It was once somebody’s master bedroom. Shavian felt like an intruder even being in here. A room filled with someone else’s stuff. Had someone taken over her room? Had they touched her denim collection?
They better not have!
But no, Washington was still safe. For now.
“If you are going to try and tell me I’m some special snowflake, save your breath. I couldn’t even save…” she stopped talking and turned her head still not able to say his name.
Not till she kept her promise.
“Oh yes. Your holy beliefs.” He walked past the bed looking at it like it was part of an alien spacecraft. “I think, I knew what that was… back when I was one of you.” It was clear he didn’t think much of his life when he was alive. “Once again you miss the point.” His eyes were piercing, “It’s you. It’s in your genetics. Maybe it’s the same reason your hair is red. I can’t say for sure but, perhaps, you could be like me.”
“Yeah right. Then why haven’t you changed me yet?”
At her words, he laughed. “I say, do I want more like me.” He shook his head. “No.” he nodded out the window. “I want more like them.”
She spit at him, “You’re no better than Irons. You just want to rule the world too.”
He laughed again, it was dark and guttural. “You really have no idea what’s going on do you.” He wiped at the spit on his jacket. “Irons’ doesn’t want to rule anything. The weak-minded fool only wants to play god. He sees humanity as a plaything he sits above.”