The Civil Dead (The Death of Dreams)

The Civil Dead (The Death of Dreams)

A Story by Colton Warr
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ATTENTION: This story contains some adult elements. Reader discretion is advised

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The Civil Dead 
A Short Fiction Series by Colton Warr


“The Death of Dreams” 

Belle Farmhouse. 1862. 

    “Well, my dear Addy, it has been an absolute delight sitting in this storm shelter with you and the infant. However, I believe you are simply insane. There is a fine mental institution in Charleston, I recommend a visit in the quickest of fashions.”
    And with that, Joe Ferris rose from his position inside of the storm shelter and began to exit. Addison sat, baby in hand, as she watched the strange man start to leave. She all of the sudden began to feel alone. Just as she had prior to his arrival. She was still an emotional wreck and it was obvious that she had been crying while divulging the bloody scene she had just survived. The baby was awake in her arms and had been in and out of crying itself. 
    “No. Wait. You would just leave a lady and her child all alone in a ditch?” 
    Addison reached out and grabbed a hold of Mr. Ferris’s shirt. He quickly, violently retracted his arm from her lose grasp. He turned to her and stared into her eyes. He said nothing. He then turned away and continued out the shelter. Addison followed. 
    “Are you not some kind of decent man at all, then?” 
    Mr. Ferris continued to walk towards his horse, Spade, hellbent on removing himself from this area. 
    “How do you expect me to get to Charleston on foot with a baby?” 
    Joe propelled himself onto the saddle of his horse. 
    “Leave the baby here. You’ll move faster and won’t be eaten by something at night because it won’t shut up.” 
    Addison gasped. She was astonished at the comment. 
    “You are a real fine piece of work, you know that?” She yelled as she ran towards the horse, baby still in hand. 
    “Look, woman, you’re crazy. And even if, by some miracle, you aren't crazy, this all…this thing in its entirety is crazy.” Joe said as he motioned and pointed at the scene of carnage that surrounded them underneath the setting sun. 
    “You don’t believe me? Fine. That dumb rock for a brain you have thinks I’m crazy? Fine. You don’t want to accept that anything I’ve told you is real even though there is blood everywhere and a damned ship beached right over there? Fine! But I am a lady of the South and you are a Gentleman of the South. You must feel some entitlement for our well being? At least until we get to Charleston. I’ll even split the food and supplies with you.” 
    Joe Ferris smirked. 
    “And what if I took the supplies and food from you by force. What, then, would a lady from the South do?” 
    Addison’s mood went from hopeful to protective. 
    “You can try, you son of a b***h. But my momma didn't raise a prissy little schoolgirl. If you want it, you’ll have to kill a lady and an infant.” 
    Addison felt good about what she had said. She thought that there would be no way any man could commit such acts. Joe spurred Spade and rode up right alongside Addison. He bent over his saddle slightly and locked eyes with the southern lady. 
    “Addy, you don’t know me very well.”
    Addy took several steps back. The baby started to cry as if it, too, heard the remark the man on the horse just made. Addison tried to be strong for the child as she began to rock it back and forth. Joe Ferris leaned up and prepared to ride off. But something stopped him before he could make a move. A sound of a song. An old southern church hymnal that he remembered that took him back to his forgotten childhood. He turned to Addy and saw her rocking the child and serenading it back into a quiet submission. He was entranced, but only for a moment. He turned his head towards the opposite direction and clinched his teeth together. 
    “S**t.” He faintly spoke. 
    He then turned back to Addy as her eyes rose to his. Joe thought hard for several seconds. He then leaned back in towards Addison. 
    “If you try a single thing….I will put much more than just a single bullet in your head.” 

Weeks later. May 1862. Somewhere on the border of Tennessee and Alabama. 

    Lieutenant Cole Niles walked through a thick brush of vegetation as he carefully stepped, one foot after the other, forward into God only knew what. The sentry line had taken its toll on Cole. He truly longed for the battlefield again. Since Shiloh, he had seen very little action. Now that summer had moved into full swing, Cole thought he was going to die of a combination of heat and boredom. Sci then limped up beside Cole. 
    “It is funny how I am too injured to ride a horse but not injured enough to walk all day, no?”
    The two laughed at Sci’s remarks. 
    “Yeah, these long walks likely aren't doing that leg of yours any favors.”
    Cole glanced at Sci’s injured being. He was healing but not as fast as he should be. 
    “Are you injured?” 
    Cole glanced down at his left arm which had been hit by a bullet from the enemies rifle during their charge at Shiloh. 
    “No, Cole, not there. Here.” 
    As Cole looked back at Sci he noticed that he was touching his head. Cole laughed. 
    “You think I’m going crazy out here in this heat, don't you?” 
    Sci smiled. 
    “Just worried about your thirst for glory and what you would do to get it.” 
    Sci paused as the two continued to walk. 
    “I’m sure that your parents would still be proud of you.” 
    Cole quickly interjected and stopped the two from walking. 
    “Listen to me, you don’t know a thing about my parents. What they were like for my childhood and what they did to me when I joined up with the blue-backs. And now I walk aimlessly in this Godforsaken heat. I’m as lost as I was when I enlisted.” 
    And with that Cole turned and continued to walk about the brush close to the Alabama border. Sci watched him as he left. He knew what was going on. He knew Cole could blow at any time now. 
    A few days later, Cole’s sentry was ordered to retreat further back into Tennessee. They stood watch for any confederate skirmish lines that could have slipped back into the state. As the sun sunk towards the ground, the man in charge of the sentry, Sergeant Billy Conway, a Tennessee native, barked out orders to make camp a little earlier than usual. 
    “Alright, we have a storm rolling through so we will hunker down here for the night. Usual watches, three-hour shifts then get some shut eye. Lincoln, Parker, and Tonker are on chow duty. Set up some fires and get yourselves set up for the night.” 
    Cole and Sci began to set up their small sleeping quarters. 
    “Looks like we will get a little wet tonight. Let’s start chopping some wood and see if we can’t put a roof over us.” Cole said.
    The two men began searching for wood. 
    “Oh, and Mr. Negro.” 
    Sci and Cole both looked up at the Sergeant. He smirked. 
    “Why don’t you fix us all up a fancy roof like that?” 
    The nickname wasn't new out here in the sentry, and neither were the outlandish requests. 
    “What’s a matter, sir. Are the men worn out from the heat?” Cole inquired with a bit of a smart a*s tone. 
    The Sergeant grew annoyed. 
    “What was that, boy?”
    The Sergeant was much older than most of the men in the sentry. 
    “Yeah, I said it.” 
    Billy Conway started walking with a fever towards Cole and Sci. 
    “You may have been a prissy little horse rider in there. But out here, you are just a man who walks. A man who walks and a man who builds roofs for the rest of the men who don’t challenge me in front of them.” 
    Cole began to boil as he clenched his fists together. 
    “Sir, I just don’t think the names and b***h work are completely necessary. It gives off a-“ 
    Conway interrupted. 
    “It gives off a sense of command. Of order. Something you didn't understand in there but you will learn out here.” 
    Cole took a step towards the officer. 
    “There is a nation of difference between command and just lashing out at your men.” 
    The Sergeant blew a gasket. He stepped even closer to Cole. 
    “You think you’re ready to lead men? Try leading them on an empty stomach.” 
    He then raised his voice as if talking to everyone again. 
    “No chow for Cole! Or his Negro partner.” 
    The Sergeant then spit on the dirt and began to walk away. Cole and Sci exchanged a look. Cole began to walk towards Conway when Sci intercepted. 
    “Don’t you dare do this on my account.”
    “Best get to fixin’ those tents, boys. Storm will be over us soon.”
    The two men got to work as the wind began to pick up and the sky began to be invaded by an army of dark clouds. Something was indeed being brewed. 

Just outside of Charleston, South Carolina. Same evening. May 1862. 

    Addison and Mr. Ferris had been riding together for weeks now. Addy and the baby usually rode the horse while Joe Ferris, being the sparkling image of a gentleman he was, walked on foot and patrolled the surrounding areas for his pursuers. His pursuers were the exact reason it was taking the two of them so long to reach Charleston. They had been in several close calls that had caused them to maneuver their route. This frustrated all three of them but it vexed Mr. Ferris more than any. He was determined to reach Charleston. He had his reasons. As the sun was beginning to set, Joe Ferris made the call to stop and set up camp for the night. They were just off of a road that led straight to Charleston. 
    “So it’s just up this way? And about a day’s march?” 
    Joe Ferris hopped down off of his horse. 
    “Perhaps a day and a half if we have to stop for another damn thunderstorm.” 
    Addy rocked the baby back and forth and she continued the struggle of not having it cry every hour. She began to sing again. Joe listened. He listened closer to Addison’s voice rather than the lyrics to the song. 
    “Where did you learn to do that?” He finally asked. 
    “Do what?” 
    Joe continued to remove the saddle from Spade’s back. 
    “To sing. Who taught you how to sing?” 
    Addison at first answered with an excitement and electricity about her. 
    “Well, my mother of course.” 
    And as soon as the words left her lips she was immediately taken back to the scene of carnage at her families farm. She thought of the everything. Everyone. Her father out in the yard, their house servants being so helpless. And her mother, who sacrificed herself for Addison. Addy began to tear up. 
    “Here, can you hold him.” She said as she was already handing the baby over. 
    Joe took the baby after placing his saddle on the ground. He saw that she was distraught over whatever seemed to have happened at her farm. Addison walked away, into the surrounding woods, as she tried to hide her tears. 
    “Now wait a minute, missy. We have firewood to gather.” 
    It was too late, she was moving at a hastened pace. He then looked down at the baby as it was starting to wake up. 
    “I reckon this is when most men say…”
    The baby let out a vicious cry. 
    “…S**t.” 
    
    Addison barreled her way through the various tree branches and bushes that stood in her way as she continued to walk, faster and faster. The tears in her eyes began to distort the clarity of her vision. So much, that she actually lost track of where she was going and how far she had actually walked. She didn't care. She just wanted to walk until her legs fell off or until she tripped and fell into a small creek. The fall graced her with several cuts along her arms and bruises. As she tried to stand back up, she noticed that her foot was caught in between a couple of small logs laying parallel to the creek. She then put all of her weight behind it and attempted to push her foot out. As she did, her ankle was cut open by the logs and blood began to drip down the wood and sprinkle its way into the small creek. She then repositioned and what she saw would haunt her forever. She let out a scream but nothing came out. Not but five feet away from her was her mother reaching out for her. Her nails were bloodied and dirty and her face was missing skin on one-half. Her eyes were black and when she opened her mouth and slow oozing fountain of dark blood was released. She growled at Addison. This sent her into a frenzy. She was pushing and pulling and wiggling to try and free herself from the logs. She noticed that her mother seemed to be stuck as well, however. All Mrs. Belle could do is reach out and growl at her daughter. She was but inches from scratching her way into Addison’s leg. She seemed to be attracted to the fresh cuts. Addison let out another scream and this time it worked, sending a loud screech which pierced through the South Carolinian evening. 
    Joe Ferris heard it. He turned into the direction of the scream and took off running. He crashed through the same branches and bushes that Addy did, although he could see perfectly. He withdrew his pistol as he could hear her scream louder and louder. He finally reached the creek where she had fallen. 
    “Are you hu-“ 
    The sight clamped down on his throat as he saw what could only be described as a woman who looked as if she should be dead but wasn’t. He was speechless, which didn't happen often. 
    “Joseph, get me out of here, please! My ankle is stuck in between these logs.” 
    “What am….what do I see right now?” 
    “You see my story coming to life. She seems to be stuck. Get down here and help me out of this!” 
    Joseph raised his pistol at Addison’s mother and pulled back the hammer. 
    “No! Please don't shoot her! It’s my mother!” 
    Joe Ferris clinched his teeth. 
    “Don’t be a fool. That can only be the Devil’s mother.” 
    And with that he squeezed the trigger as hard as he ever had, sending a bullet right square in between Mrs. Belle’s eyes. Addison’s mother’s head dropped. Just as they both thought it was over, she raised her head and growled as loud as she ever had. Her arms outreached again longing to dig into her daughter. Joe Ferris was in absolute shock. A bullet to the head usually ended any problem he had ever had with someone. Mrs. Belle started to wiggle free. 
    “Joe she’s getting free! Help me!” 
    Mr. Ferris let out a growl of his own and jumped down into the creek. 
    “Careful! She can get your jacket!” 
    Just as the words left Addy’s mouth her dead mother took hold of Mr. Ferris’s jacket. He began to be pulled back. 
    “You little s**t!” 
    He then withdrew his long buck knife from his leather belt and took his best swipe at her arms, successfully pinning her to the bank of the creek. He then turned back to Addison and kicked down on logs which imprisoned her ankle. The logs snapped and Addy was free. The two then quickly climbed back up the bank to safety. They turned and looked at Mrs. Belle. She was still down there and was still reaching out for them. 
    “You’re telling me that she is dead?” Joe Ferris asked. 
    “Well doesn’t she look it?” Addy tearfully replied. 
    The two continued to stare at her. Joe was then struck by an idea. Something which he thought would best benefit both of them. He glanced over and noticed Addy in a dazed state as she stared at her mother. 
    “You can end this for her.”
    The words that had just come out of Joe Ferris’s mouth had never been softer. 
    “She’s in hell right now. Look at her. It’s no longer her but, rather, it. She’s a shell. She’s possessed and this is not her, Addy, this is far from your mother. You-“ 
    Addison interjected. 
    “What are you asking me to do?” She said as a tear streamed down her already soaked face.     
    Joe took in a deep breath. 
    “If what you told me back at your farm is, in fact, true…then we need to further understand what we are dealing with. We need to know what we can do.” 
    He then turned to her and looked her right in the eyes. 
    “We need to know how to end them. To defeat them. To stop them. However, you wish to word it. That is knowledge you and I now desperately need.”
    Streams of tears continued down Addison’s face as she started to understand what he meant. 
    “Look, I can’t imagine this for you and neither can anyone else, quite frankly. But if we pass up on this opportunity….we may not get another one.” 
    Addison dug her face into her palms. And then her nails into her forehead. She then dropped her hand and sniffed up anything in her nose. She wiped her face and began to nod her head up and down. She swallowed hard and then spoke. 
    “Give me the gun.” 
    Joe Ferris smiled on the inside but kept his concerned look well placed upon his face. Joe handed his Colt revolver over to her. 
    “She’s nice and pinned there. Try her stomach, her heart, and her head again. If none of those fine options work then we can do away with her head.” 
    “That won’t work. A servant at my house attacked my mother without a head.” 
    Joe quickly glanced at Addison. 
    “I thought you said this was your mother?” 
    Addison raised the pistol and took aim at Mrs. Belle. 
    “Not anymore.” 
    And with that she pulled the trigger, sending a bullet into her mother's stomach. The dead women let out another growl but didn't seem to die. Addy fired again, this time into the women’s chest. Still nothing. She then unloaded the revolver into her body, sending blood and pieces of dead skin into the creek. The pistol was emptied into her mother, yet she was still moving. She then turned to Joe and handed him the pistol. 
    “Reload it.” 
    Joe noticed a change within Addison, a change that he liked. He then began reloading his pistol, one by one, he placed a bullet into the revolving chamber. As he did this, Addison just stared at her mother. She noticed she wasn't moving very fast and her growls grew weaker. Addy looked closely at her mother’s chest. 
    “She’s dead everywhere but her heart.” She faintly spoke. 
    She then slid back down the creek bed and into the shallow creek. This caused her mother to perk up but still not to the level she was before Addy unloaded on her. 
    “And just when I thought you weren't out of your mind, lady.”
    Addison then retracted the blade from her mother’s arm. This freed her movement, yet still slow, Mrs. Belle made a move for her daughter. She lunged at her with both arms. Addison caught them both and looked into her mother’s eyes one last time. She then released one arm allowing it to just scratch the surface of Addison’s skin before she plunged the long buck knife into her mother’s heart. Addison witnessed her mother die a second time.     Mrs. Belle slowly lost all motor skills and her arms dropped into the water of the creek. Addison was just locked in a stair with the black eyes of her dead mother. And just as the last noise left Mrs. Belle’s mouth, she turned her head up to the sky and ended. Tears again streamed down Addy’s face. She knew this would be the last time she would ever see her. She dug her head into her bloodied and ripped up chest. She kept it there for some time before Joe Ferris interjected. 
    “Give her eyes a look.” 
    Addison raised her gaze to her mother’s eyes. They had returned to their original color, hazel, from the empty black they once were. Addison smiled as a single tear fell from her eye. She was happy for the first time since that day. She was happy that the last time she would see her mother’s eyes were when they were hers and not the dead’s. 
       This happiness was short lived by an interjection from Mr.Ferris. 
       "S**t. The kid."
       Addy turned to him and finally noticed the absence of the small child they had been riding with. 
        "You left him?!"
       They both immediately took off. They tore their way back through the woods as they searched for where the horse was tied down. Finally, the two reached Spade. They began frantically searching for the child. No sign of him. 
        "Where did you leave him?"
        "I sat him down upon this stump here. This is madness. Where could a child have gone?"
        "Maybe he didn't go anywhere. Maybe he was taken." 
        Addison spoke these words as she started at what appeared to be a figure in the woods. She was entranced as she began to step closer. After several steps, she caught a glimpse of its eyes. They locked stares for what seemed like an eternity. After several seconds, the figure took off with great haste. 
       "Joe, there!"
       Joe looked up and saw the figure as he raced through the woods. Joe headed for his horse. 
       "Hop on! Use the stump."
        As Addison placed herself onto the horse Joe noticed something else. 
       "Addy, there appears to be more than one."

Eastern Tennessee. That night. 1862. 

     “Father…we’ve talked about this. you knew this was going to happen.”
     “Yeah, well I didn’t think it was actually gonna happen. Unbelievable. My own son fighin’ for the damn Yankees. You know what they mean to do, don’t you? And they’ve succeeded. You’ve split this family up. You’ve torn us to pieces, Cole!”
    
    Cole awoke to the sound of nothing. The rain must have finally stopped. He rolled over and saw that his roof had actually held up pretty well. Perhaps that was because he took the most time and care with his own rather than any of the other men. He thought about what he had just heard, what he had just seen in his head. He shook it off and sat up. It had indeed stopped raining. It quickly hit him that he had to pee. So Cole got up and exited his makeshift quarters. He untied his pants and relieved himself. As he did he took a look around noticed that Sci’s makeshift tent was empty and the blanket and cot he slept on drug out into the mud. Cole finished up and walked over to the scene. It was definitely empty. He took a look around to see if maybe he, too, had to relieve himself. Or if he could spot him taking a stroll. They both had been struggling to sleep. No sign of him. He then took a quick stroll around the camp to see if he was anywhere. Still no sign of him. All of the sudden, he heard a faint noise. He turned to look but saw nothing. He quickly grabbed a lantern and lit it. He heard the noise again, this time, a little louder. Cole Niles took off towards the noise. He quickly and quietly scurried through the dark woods. His head was in constant motion as he scanned his surroundings. Cole soon realized that the noise was indeed a scream and it belonged to a male. It had to be Sci. Finally, Cole caught a visual of the scene. It appeared as though three men were beating another man. As Cole slowly stepped closer he understood what was going on. Sergeant Billy Conway and two other men were beating Sci to a pulp. With their fists, legs and any other various item on the ground that they could get their filthy hands on. There was a slow string of blood coming from Sci’s mouth as he struggled to regain his focus through the constant barrage of fists. Cole blew out his lantern. He located which one was his Sergeant and he slowly got in behind him, using trees and the dark of night as his cover. It started to rain again. When he felt he was close enough, he made his move. 
    “Now this is absolutely how you lead men.” 
    Just as he spoke these words Billy Conway turned to him and Cole unleashed a violent swing of his lantern at the Sergeant. He connected with this face, striking Billy right across his temple. The vicious blow sent him limply to the mud. Cole then turned his attention to the other two men. 
    “And let me guess, since you two know how to follow orders, you came right along with this f**k as he led you down a path of misconduct and, in my eyes, treason. Your views and judgment were distorted and manipulated. Now, my fists and this lantern will work to undo these terrible things.” 
    And with that Cole took a swing with the lantern at one of the other two men. The man managed to block it with his arm but the metal lantern still left its mark. The second man went to attack as Cole was preoccupied with the first. Sci intervened. As the man was passing him he reached up with his bloodied arm and tripped him, sending him to the ground close to Sci. Cole was tackled to the ground. Upon thudding into the mud he lost his grip of the lantern. The man reared back and swung his fist at Cole. Cole managed to block it and counter with his own swing, sending his attacker to the mud beside him. Cole regained possession of the lantern and thrust downward upon the man's face. 
    “Cole, behind you!”
    Cole turned to see the second man diving towards him. He couldn't move fast enough as the man and Cole were sent into the mud. Again his attacker went to send a punch at his face and this time, Cole still had the lantern. He moved it in front of his attackers punch at the very last second. His enemies punch landed on the lantern, breaking his hand on impact. The man let out a painful scream as he grabbed hold of his shattered hand. Cole then thrust the lantern into the man's stomach which caused him to bend with the blow. Cole then took a swing at the man's head, knocking him to the mud. Cole finally rose up as he thought all of the attackers were subdued. He turned and looked at Sci. 
    “Should we kill them?” 
    Just as the words left his mouth, the once knocked out Sergeant Conway struck the back of Cole’s head with a stick, this time sending him to the mud. He then turned to Sci and connected a blow with his head as well. That blow, however, shattered the stick sending shards of wood everywhere. He then turned his attention on Cole and straddled him as he laid in the mud. Billy Conway began to thrust his two fists into Cole’s face, one after the other. Cole suddenly went from seeing Billy Conway to seeing his father and Mother throwing him out of his families house. He then snapped out of it and blocked the next punch from his Sergeant. He then struck Billy in the stomach and his genital area. Cole then threw him onto the ground and straddled him. He began throwing punch after punch into Billy’s face. The Sergeants' face began to drown in blood. Cole couldn't stop. He then reached for the lantern and continued to slam that into his enemies face, breaking every facial bone one by one. As he looked down upon the bloodied face he noticed it appeared to look as his own father's face. Cole then threw the lantern away in disgust. He glanced back down and noticed Billy Conway still breathing. He then grabbed one of the many shards of wood in the mud and aimed it at the man's throat. Billy Conway squeezed out one last line. 
    “F****n’ traitor.” 
    And with that, Cole was immediately filled with disgust and anger. He thrust the wooden shard into Billy Conway’s neck, constructing a pool of red ooze that poured out and into the mud. Billy Conway was no more. Cole then sat back as he took in what he just did. He had just murdered a fellow Union soldier. On top of that, an officer. His mind started to race as he went back over the situation. He thought to himself, “I am a f****n’ traitor.” He turned to Sci as he now sat leaned up against the tree as the rain now started to pour down on the bloodied scene. Cole slid over and leaned himself up next to him on the same tree. The two sat there and stared at two knocked out men and one dead man. 
    “Sci, you know what has to happen now, don't you?” 
    Sci turned to Cole in slight confusion. 
    “I can’t go back to that camp. I can’t go back to that army. And I may not even be able to go back to the Union military at all.” 
    “And you think I can? There is a dead man here, Cole.” 
    Cole then turned to his friend. 
    “You can say that they attacked you in the night. There are still good men in that camp. Not all of them were evil.” 
    Sci nodded his head in disagreement.
    “There is no longer a place for me amongst their ranks.” 
    Cole interjected quickly. 
    “Sci, I’ve killed a man. No moral cause of defending you will wash me from that. You haven’t. You could still have a life here. You can still live out your dream here.” 
    Sci turned away from Cole and looked upon the three bodies. He then struggled his way up to a standing state. He limped over as the rain continued to pour in the middle of the night. Sci then bent over slowly and painfully as he retrieved the shard of wood from the now dead Bill Conway’s neck. A string of thick blood came out of the flesh. He then walked over to the first of the two men who were knocked out. He turned him over and looked at his face. He then struck the man's neck with the already bloodied wooden shard. This awakened the man but only sent him right back into a permeant sleep. He then removed the wooden shard and walked over to the other man and did the same thing. This time, he left the wooden shard in the now dead man's neck. He then rose up and limped his way back to where Cole Niles was sitting. Cole was speechless. Sci then turned to his greatest friend. 
    “The dream is as dead as they are.”      

Haiti. Summer, 1862. 

    An old women slowly walked through a dark and damp chamber. It was dimly lit by only a few torches that were scattered about. The lady was carrying something that had a cloak placed over the top of it as if to conceal its contents. She reached a wooden door with several metal latches. She unlocked them one by one with hands that were stained with both blood and dirt. She then opened the door slowly as it released a screech out into the still room. She then closed the door behind her and turned to its contents. She grinned and she took a step forward. The room was filled with cells and the cells filled with people. People whom were no longer themselves. As she walked by each cell, one after the other, the people in the cells acknowledged her. They slammed into the bars which separated them and reached out for her. Their hands were just as dirty and bloody as hers. There were low growls coming from each cell as they were all filled with these figures. Beaten and bloodied hands reached out for her as she walked on. She reached a cell at the end of the long room. This cell was different, however. In it, laid five men, a woman, and a child. They were motionless but still alive, almost as if they were diseased. They were unlike the other figures in the one sense that they were still alive. The lady stopped in front of this cell and grabbed one of its bars with her hand. She followed that by turning her head slowly. She gazed into the cell. After several seconds, she then knelt down and sat down what she was carrying. She then removed the cloak. This revealed a cage and in this cage were three large rats. They were missing pieces of flesh which revealed bone. Their teeth were large and sharpened. Their eyes were as black as the night. She reached down to the door of the cage and unlocked it. The door then swung open and the three rats raced into the cell. They dove onto the unsuspecting people and they began to dig their sharp teeth and jagged claws into the weakened people. The men, woman, and child tried to remove the rats but they had been weakened and could not do so despite their best efforts. They were weak and sick and prime targets for a curse. The old lady watched on as they continued to gnaw at the flesh and eyes of the living. She couldn't help but smile as one of her eyes twitched at the scene. 
    After several minutes, the rats returned to the still opened cage. The old lady then shut the cage door and covered it back up with the cloak. She glanced back into the cell as the five men, woman and child laid motionless and bleeding, scattered about the cell. She looked closely at the child. After several seconds, the child’s hand began to twitch. The old lady grinned and then turned towards the exit. As she walked, again, the other cells were aroused and reached out for her. She then exited and locked the metal hatches on the wooden door. The old lady then started back up a long spiral set of stone stairs that led down to the cells. When she reached the top there was a door with a latch. Instead of it being metal, it was made of bone. She unlatched it and walked through, leaving the cells behind. What was on the other side of that door was a room full of bones and dead animals. Cages hung from the ceiling. Some were empty and some were filled with anything from dead fish to live birds. It was the Slaughter House and she was the Priestess. She walked over to a room without a door. In this room was the priest who sold slaves. He was sitting at a desk with various books, knives, and blood on it. He was piercing what appeared to be a heart with various needles that he hand made. The Priestess of Bones watched on for several seconds and then spoke. 
    “It is time to raise them.”
    The old Priest of Hearts stopped what he was doing and looked up at his wife. 
    “Let them all be Cursed!”  

© 2016 Colton Warr



Author's Note

Colton Warr
The third installment to my "The Civil Dead" series. Leave me with your thoughts on where the story is heading!
P.S. I have tried to work out some of those small grammar kinks so hopefully this is a little cleaner! Thanks for reading!

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Reviews

loved the characters,reminds me of a civil war battle in south carolina
as they took refuge in a root cellar..loved it

Posted 1 Year Ago


Colton Warr

1 Year Ago

Outstanding! I'm so glad you've been enjoying these! I look forward to continuing to hear your thoug.. read more
You write very well. I enjoyed the interchange in between the male and female best. Valentine

Posted 1 Year Ago


Colton Warr

1 Year Ago

Thank you so much, Valentine! I appreciate your kind words! I look forwarded to hearing your opinion.. read more
Critique: (And just as the last noise left Mrs. Belle’s mouth, she turned her head up to the sky and ended) did you mean nodded not ended?

Review: I really like the characters as well as how you fit them into the story, they live the role rather feel like they were forced into the story. Action packed without jumping off the story line as happens in most action-based stories. The subplots are strong but don't take anything away from the main plot (which is not easy to do so well done on that). A much better-finished chapter which I take Grammarly helped with that. I like what you have written and look forward to reading more :~) Clap! Clap! Clap! Clap!

Posted 1 Year Ago


Colton Warr

1 Year Ago

I absolutely meant nodded lol good catch. I'm sure you know how it is, sometimes when you're editing.. read more
Bear

1 Year Ago

Oh do I understand, my eyes and mind see one word and my fingers type's another and no matter how I .. read more
Colton you know I hate story but I read it anyway as a favour,and I'm glad I did you took the reader to a place so beautifully written...your words conveyed very well and I really enjoyed this piece

Posted 1 Year Ago


Colton Warr

1 Year Ago

I am so glad you decided to check this out despite not being a huge fan of stories! That means a lot.. read more
My friend. A powerful tale written. You took the reader to hard times and hard decisions.
" The old Priest of Hearts stopped what he was doing and looked up at his wife.
“Let them all be Cursed!”
I liked the ending a lot. Left the reader with something to think about. Thank you for sharing the amazing story.
Coyote


Posted 1 Year Ago


Colton Warr

1 Year Ago

Thank you so much, my friend! I'm so glad you enjoyed this next installment in the series! I look to.. read more
Coyote Poetry

1 Year Ago

A amazing story and you are welcome.
This is the first time reading something this lengthy at the Cafe, but I'm quite impressed with what you've written here. Things change very much, very fast. The pacing is perfect.

Posted 1 Year Ago


Colton Warr

1 Year Ago

Thank you very much! I appreciate you taking the time out to read this! Check out the first two in t.. read more

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Added on September 2, 2016
Last Updated on September 2, 2016
Tags: Zombies, Story, Stories, Love, Hate, War, Friendship, Short Story

Author

Colton Warr
Colton Warr

Lexington, KY



About
Just using a pen to scribble my thoughts and emotion, hoping to generate the same from you. All of my words are mine. Everything I write is real and true, things that I am going through in my life. I .. more..

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