Life as a zombie. 2
There are a few hundred of us living in a wide plain of dust outside some large city. We don't need shelter or warmth, obviously. We stand around in the dust, and time passes. I think we've been here for a long time. Despite my dragging entrails, I am in decay's early stages, but there are a few elderly ones here who are little more than skeletons with clinging bits of muscle. Somehow, it still extends and contracts, and they keep moving. I have never seen any of us "die" of old age. Maybe we live forever, I don't know. I don't think much about the future anymore. That's something that's very different from before. When I was alive, the future was all I thought about. Obsessed about. Death has relaxed me.
But it makes me sad that we've forgotten our names. Out of everything, this seems to me the most tragic. I don't miss my own, but I mourn for everyone else's, because I want to love them, but I don't know who they are
Today a group of us are going into town to find some food. How this expedition begins is one of us gets hungry and starts shuffling toward town, and a few others follow him. Focused thought is a rare occurrence with us, and we follow it when we see it. Otherwise we would just be standing around groaning. We do a lot of standing around groaning, and it's frustrating sometimes. Years pass this way. The flesh withers on our bones, and we stand around, waiting for it. I am curious how old I might be.
The city where the people live is not that far. We arrive around noon and start looking for living flesh. The new kind of hunger is a strange feeling. You don't feel it in your stomach - of course not, since some of us don't even have stomachs. You feel it just...everywhere. You start to feel "more dead". I've watched some of my friends go back to being full-dead, when food is scarce. They just slow down, and stop, and become corpses again. I don't really understand it.
I guess the world has mostly ended, because the cities we wander through are decaying as fast as we are. Buildings are collapsed. Dead, rusted cars fill the streets. All glass everywhere is shattered. I don't know if there was a war, or a plague, or if it was just us. Maybe it was all three. I don't know. I don't think about things like that anymore.
In a cluster of broken down apartment buildings we find some people, and we eat them. Some of them have weapons, and as usual we lose some of our number, but we don't care. Why would we care? What's death, now?
Eating is not a pleasant business. I chew off a man's arm, and I hate this, it's disgusting. I hate his screams, because I don't like pain, I don't like to hurt things, but this is the world now, this is what we do. Of course, if I don't eat all of him, if I leave enough, he'll rise up and follow me back to our dusty field outside the city, and that might make me feel better. I'll introduce him to everyone, and maybe we'll stand around and groan for a while. It's hard to say what "friends" are anymore, but maybe that's close. If I don't eat all of him, if I leave enough...
But of course I don't leave enough. I eat his brain, because that's the good part. That's the part that, when I swallow it, makes my head light up with feelings. Clear memories. For about three to ten seconds, depending on the person, I get to feel alive. I get traces of delicious meals, beautiful music, perfume, orgasms, sunsets, life. Then it fades, and I get up and stumble out of the city, still dead, but feeling a little less so. Feeling ok.
I don't know why we have to eat people. I don't understand what chewing off a man's neck accomplishes. We certainly don't digest the meat and absorb the nutrients. My stomach is a rotted bag of dried bile, useless. We don't digest, we just eat until the weight forces it out our ass holes, and then we eat more. It feels so useless, and yet it keeps us walking. I don't know why. None of us really understand why we are the way we are. We don't know if we're the result of some strange global infection, or some ancient curse, or something even more senseless. We don't talk about it much. Existential debate is not a major part of zombie life. We are here, and we do things. We are simple. It's nice sometimes.