The Philanthropic Zombie

The Philanthropic Zombie

A Story by Lambo

Among the silent ruins of Seattle resided a tribe of peaceful zombies. The wind rushed down city streets now occupied only by scattered trash, abandoned vehicles, and the wandering undead. To a being having retained sufficient mental processes, the landscape would appear free and at peace, even Zen-like in its deserted stillness. But few such men and women existed within the boundaries of the city, the philosophical brains of their once multitudinous kin devoured by the zombies long ago. The undead themselves could no longer fathom beauty; the concepts of poetry and art were overridden by their primitive drive to feed and survive. Zane was like any of the others--vacuous, mindless, yet spurred into startling excitement and vigor when presented with the prospect of fresh human meat. Of course he had no permanent home; through each quiet day and calm night he would stagger aimlessly through the city, without a care in the world.

 

One afternoon, a squirrel in his belly and a bovine smile on his face, Zane strolled into a small, gutted residential building. Homeless punks had camped in the place years ago, before the zombies had come, when there had still been a society to reject. The crusty young anarchists might have been eaten alive or they might have managed to escape to a better place. They might have even become zombies themselves, for that matter. A tasty lone pigeon fluttered to the pavement outside the empty doorframe, but Zane didn’t even notice. He stared, transfixed, at the surviving interior walls of the building. Every inch was crowded with vivid graffiti. There were paintings, signatures, portraits, murals, stickers, collages made from shreds of periodicals. Schools of thought, stories, memories, complete biographies of the past residents were plastered across every visible surface. And then something happened. Deep within Zane’s skull, the useless ecosystem of maggots and synapses suddenly rebooted. Zane had squatted in that house himself. His friends had been there with him. They had put their hair up in colorful patterns of spikes and fans and they had spent their evenings at the crazy clubs and bars downtown. Zane knew who he was and where he was and why he was there.

 

He stepped outside the place where he had once lived, and he could hear again; he could hear and comprehend the sounds of a dying city that he had walked in a stupid daze for the last thirty months. The rotten breeze whispered through the shadowed alleyways and the rubble-littered streets. Cold water trickled faintly in the sewer. From miles away there came thunder and the howls of hungry coyotes. Distorted music echoed eerily from some abandoned speaker up in the empty gray skyscrapers. Zane thought he heard someone weeping in a distant, unseen place. He remembered the other zombies, the poor lost people who would surely snap out of their brainless bloodlust if only he could scream reality back into their ears. He called out to them. He told them of beauty. He told them of poetry and art. He told them of loneliness and happiness and joy and depression and pain. He told them of friendship and liberty. He told them of struggle and achievement. He told them of life, and celebration, and being yourself even when no one will support you. He paused. The streets were empty. The weeping had stopped. The thunderstorm had passed on. The sewers were silent. And then the zombies came for Zane. They tore him apart even as he told them about peace and love. They strewed his steaming organs across the asphalt and they devoured his benevolent mind. And the apocalypse reigned on until the end.

© 2010 Lambo


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The imagery is great along with your character's human like characteristics. I like how this breaks from the normal zombie ending where you dont really feel anything when they die, to the shock ending of you dont want them to die but they do.
~Aradie

Posted 14 Years Ago


I'm really warming up to your style. I wish I could have read your other works before commenting on "Zombie Burrito," I would have understood it better.

As for this one, it's simple and to the point for the most part. As with your last work I reviewed, the imagery is strong and carries most of the weight. Humanizing the zombie's character, and then that being the character's tragic flaw so to speak, was something that intrigued me. I've read Max Brook's Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z, and when I think zombies, that's where my mind goes - the constant theme of zombies being the polar opposite of human.

The conclusion made me smile. No room for humanity in post apocalyptica.

Posted 14 Years Ago



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Added on May 29, 2010
Last Updated on May 29, 2010

Author

Lambo
Lambo

Ashland, OR



About
The name is Lambo. I am creepy. I enjoy strange music, darkness, good salads, clutter, and seclusion. more..

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