Grand Theft Stiletto
By Garry Vakarian
The night was clear and quiet. For once, the town looked like a ghost town and not a zombie mayhem. Graham and Annabelle traveled on the main street half asleep on the back of their centaur mounts. They had been searching for Rufus for two days already. The last time they saw him was at the park when he tried – unsuccessfully – to kill a human survivor to cull his soul and finish his reaper trainee exam. That was when a bunch of centaurs showed up out of nowhere, and started trampling everything in sight. Since they were prompt to succumb to bloodrage, the more violent they got the more their cognitive abilities got drained in the process. In the end, most of them became mindless animals and were used in the netherworld as beasts of burdens.
Since Heaven and Hell had declared war on one another over who’s responsible for the unpredicted human zombie apocalypse, Earth had been looking like a very bad circus. Packs of zombies roamed the lands of course, but legions of forsaken creatures battling hordes of angels stole the show. And if that wasn’t enough, legendary beasts from both sides were brought in as well. The only thing missing was perhaps an alien invasion (Some say the zombie plague came from an extraterrestrial delivery saucer that had crashed not long ago and that the military had opened one of its biohazard packages thus creating this whole damn mess. But that’s preposterous I’m telling you. Who in their right mind would believe aliens exist, aside lunatics and conspiracy theorists?).
Most of the undead in this town were casualties of this conflict and Graham warmly welcomed this respite to catch a few Zs while Annabelle kept a dozy eye on watch. Sometimes a lone wyrm flew by, or a distant echo of a zombie moaning could be heard, but this night was the first truly peaceful time since the beginning of the Apocalypse. Graham surprised himself dreaming about his boss Pryanka, and what she looked like when she was still human.Especially in a bikini. His lusty thoughts were quickly disrupted by a sudden shriek. As he instinctively rose up, he lost his balance and fell from the centaur’s back. Hard. So hard that his ride got scared and ran away.
“Ow!” he moaned trying to regain a sense of his surroundings.
“What’s going on? Are you all right? Are they back? Where’s my scythe?” After a quick look around, it was apparent there was no threats whatsoever but clearly something was wrong about Annabelle. It was like she was frozen solid in awe, her hands around her cheeks, and her mouth wide open. It was like seeing an anime character. From his standpoint, Graham’s original shock changed to a puzzled and slightly pissed expression (even if wouldn’t have been noticeable for someone who was a skeleton and had no face).
“Wooooow, shiny!” she murmured. She stepped down from her steed and headed on foot across the street. Graham stood there scratching his bony forehead, still trying to understand what was happening with her. Not for long though. Then he saw her glue her face on a store front.
“Look at them! They’re sooo beautiful! I always dreamed of having a pair like these! I should totally check them out inside.
– We’re in the middle of the apocalypse in Hick town and you’re thinking about shoes?! What is wrong with you, woman?!!
– You just don’t get it…
– Yeah right, I’M the one here who doesn’t understand. Who in their right mind wouldn’t go window shopping during a zombie outbreak? For sandals, no less! Like you’re ever gonna wear them. How would you escape a horde, if you can’t run?
– Tsk,tsk, tsk. After all this time together, and you still don’t know me. First they’re not sandals but stilettos; clearly you have no sense of style whatsoever. Second I can run with them easily, I’m not a clumsy hippo like you. And third they’re awesome. Did I say anything when you chose that fuel hungry sports car over the sensible sedan last time around? No. And you won’t wear them so that’s not a big deal for you. Want me to continue?
– Okay, okay. Fine. You win. Let’s grab that pair of shoes and be on our way. [Mumbling] On foot. Again…”
They both approached the entrance’s door, but it was locked tight. After a quick look around the building, there wasn’t any other way to get in other than the front door.
“Well, we tried but it’s impossible to get in so let’s get going, before the undead show up.
– We’ll see about that!”
Annabelle took Graham’s scythe from his hands and, in a somewhat gracious movement, spun round with the deadly instrument locked firmly in her hands. Thanks to the centrifugal force, she built enough momentum to smash the store’s glass front in one blow. Right when the window shattered, the anti-theft alarm woke up and screamed as loudly, as its speakers could. However that wasn’t enough to deter our stiletto thief from accomplishing her deed. Unshaken at all by the newly racket she had created, she stepped over the ruined display toward her prize. Annabelle marvelled at the golden heels for a few seconds before taking them from their stand. The more she looked at them the more her expression turned from amazement to displeasure.
“Wait a minute! It’s not the right size! Damn it! If I find the bitch who changed the tag…
– She’s there” said Graham, pointing his finger towards the restroom. At the back of the store they could see the store’s zombified clerk impaled on a water pipe.
“Aside from sharing your taste in shoes, it looks like she also shares your size.
– Not for long.” She walked toward the dead owner and reached for her machete on her belt.
“Oh man, I am not getting used to this…” said Graham trying to avert his gaze of the oncoming butchering. A few minutes later, Annabelle was back with a shiny shoe box and a splash of blood on her face.
“All done! I’m good to go!” she said happily.
Back on the road together again. Our hero kept thinking about all that had happened in the last few weeks. In the afterlife he had committed more felonies than he had in his entire life, the last ones being theft and accessory to murder (even if the victim was a zombie, it didn’t pose them any threat whatsoever).