I was a Teenage Zombie Hunter


 

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 How to Kill Suburban Zombies

Chapter 2 The Best Bunch of Zombie Hunters a Can Know

Chapter 3 Remember the Alamo!

Chapter 4 What’s the Difference Between an Aggie and a Zombie?

Chapter 5 The Final Zolution

 

Chapter 1: I was a Teenage Zombie Hunter1How to Kill Suburban Zombies

 

Johnny Guerra silently walked into the Lighthouse subdivision of San Antonio, Texas.  Johnny would have done a ninja proud.  Johnny was alive while every teenager in SA was dead because he was sneaky.  Very early on Johnny had figured out that it was easier to sneak around a zombie than fight a zombie.  Later on he had figured out you had to fight the skulls for reasons not related to survival but you needed to pick the time and place and that was precisely what he was doing.

 

He picked a cul-de-sac.  He taped the mobile phone to the top of a telephone pole.  The skulls would not be able to get at it.  He would call the number when he was ready and the ringing sound would attract the skulls.  Actually any rhythmic sound would attract the skulls but the two mobile phones were the smallest mobile thing he could come up with.  The skulls were attracted to rhythmic sounds like rats to cheese except rats were about ten times smarter. 

 

Previously Johnny picked a house on a slight hill that overlooked the cul-de-sac and broke into the house quietly.  Mostly he had carefully checked the front and back door of many houses that overlooked the cul-de-sac and picked the house that had an unlocked door.  He had surveyed the house from top to bottom 45 with a home made silencer at the ready in his hands with a two handed grip just like his dad had taught him.  The house turned out to be zombie free, not that it would have made much difference, the skull were slow and if you could keep your cool you even had time to carefully aim a shot to the middle of the eyes and pop them.  The keep your cool part wasn’t always that easy and six months into the year of the dead, Johnny had popped many a skull head and he still puked his guts out later about 10% of the time but this was an improvement over the ninety percent hurl rate of six months ago.  The skulls weren’t just ugul but stank, stank like you couldn’t believe and if you hurled while aiming then you might miss and even though slow, you might not have time for a second shot.

 

Yeah having a skull lumber towards you could be downright disconcerting thought Johnny. Johnny like to read and actually used words like disconcerting when thinking but would have never said the word out loud in front of his buds..

“His buds”, he thought sadly.  They were all gone but at least none of them were skulls, he had made sure of that.  He hated the “z” work and come up with the skull word on his own.  Johnny found a nice window on the second floor that overlooked the mobile phone on the telephone pole and rang up the number.  The ringing phone attracted a couple of skulls within ten minutes.  Johnny put a scope oh his 22 and calmly blew their brains out.  The 22 rifle was the perfect weapon.  Without the scope it was a good secondary short range weapon to the 45 although it didn’t have the stopping power of the 22 but of course you really didn’t want to get near a skull if you could help it so usually the 22 was the primary weapon for long range shots.  The 22 could only penetrate a skull from about x meters but would bounce around the inside the skull of a skull and take them out most of the time.  More and more skulls started crawling out of the houses in the cul-de-sac and Johnny shot them one by one slowly and methodically.

 

Lieutenant Green has watched the Johnny’s whole operation via satellite and was once again impressed.  Green already knew Johnny’s next move.  Johnny would walk to an adjacent area, find the high ground and start the whole process all over again.  Eventually he would clear the subdivision of reams and then start the whole process all over again in another subdivision.  Green reflected that Johnny had enough to sense to stay out of San Antonio’s downtown.  Taking out twenty something zombies at a time was uneccesarily risky but not out and out suicidal like a foray into a downtown would have been.  How to handle hundreds of reams and maybe thousands of reams was a problem there was non easy solution to. 

 

“Why is Johnny doing this instead of holing up”” thought Green.  The safe move would have been to clear out an area and then do occasional sorties for resupply.  In theory reams moved randomly and reams not from an area could move into your area but their slow movement meant that a ream might show up into a cleared out area of a hundred suburban houses about once a week.  If you stayed alert and created safe houses you could scuttle into them you should be ok.  Johnny obviously had figured out the concept of creating ream free safe houses.  Set up a supply center on the second floor in a room only accessible via a rope ladder and take out the stairs.  Scuttle up into the safe room, blow out the brains of the ream and go about your business.  The ten or so houses in the cul-de-sac would have enough canned supplies for at least a couple of weeks so why move until the supplies ran out?

 

Green was part of Reanimated Central Command and had every piece of paper that the once proud US had generated on Johnny before the reams had emerged.  Johnny had a clear criminal record except for some illegal entry incident when he was 14, literally kid stuff.  Johnny had gone through a scared straight program right afterwards and apparently it had worked.  His dad and mom had been Mexican-Americans.  His father had been an electrician and card carrying NRA member which explained Johnny’s proficiency with firearms.  Mom had been a nurse’s aide and this was very relevant since she had worked in the San Antonio Medical center for over 14 years and one would presume that she had taken her son with her to work many times and the son seemed to be a guy that absorbed local geography.  There was something in that Medical Center that Green wanted.

 

Johnny had gone to Catholic schools until highschool when his parents had moved from the East side, Hispanic side, of town to a neighborhood next to the medical center that was largely Anglo.  Johnny had done alright in the new neighborhood and new school and had a solid B plus average.  Johnny was about to be drafted into the Reanimated Counter Strike Core or as they like to refer to themselves the Zombie Hunters.

 

Puck go the order at 800.  “What the hell?  You want us to extract some pimply faced Mexican kid from San Antonio?” 

“Yes”, replied Green. 

“I thought all civilian rescues had been scrubbed months ago?”

“This is not a civilian extract this is a scout recruitment and he’s Mexican-American not Mexican”

“This kid must be fifteen” Puck said as he looked at Johnny’s picture

“He’s seventeen but was sixteen when the reams emerged” responded Green.

“I don’t care about his age, he’s a kid, no ops experience, much less even basic, what makes his qualified?” Puck

“He survived while his city died” responded Green

Puck grunted but thought “Good point” but no sense letting a tight ass like Green know that.

Puck read the mission briefing more carefully.  Simple sub due subject, extract subject, train subject and deploy subject in Project Alamo. Puck mentally debated the pros and cons of using scarce personnel resources to extract Johnny.  Civi extracts for humanitarian purposes had long ago been abandoned.  Extractions were dangerous and if you lost one trained military asset for even ten dumb civis then you had lost.  It was a numbers game and all humans were not equal.  Some were survivors and some were just zombie meat waiting in the wings.

 

Johnny knew nothing about this debate about his future.  He had gone ahead and brought his heavier gear bag from outside the cul-de-sac and to the house and made himself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  The cul-de-sac was next to his strategic goal, the actual lighthouse of the so name lighthouse subdivision.  The lighthouse was next to the community center and was fake and decorative but the lighthouse did have real stairs that lead to a balcony at top of the lighthouse. And was the high ground for the whole subdivision.  He figured the pantry of the community center would be well stocked.   He had been to the community center when he was around 13 for some quincieniera or another of some cousin or another.  Johnny wasn’t sure how accurate his memories were.  Mexican-Americans had lots of celebrations and in Johnny’s mind all the pre-year of the dead stuff was becoming more and more of a blur.  There was a pool.  Probably filled with bloated dead bodies and even some skull but the skulls but if he took care of the bodies and the skulls maybe he could clean the pool and take a swim.  Naw he realized how nuts that idea was immediately.  No more swims.  There would be algae on top of the pool and you never knew what skull was waiting underneath.  Better to fill the pool with gasoline and set the whole thing on fire.  The skulls would emerge, be set on fire and he could shoot them before they got out of the pool.  Cleaning the pool after than would have been a waste of resources and who would want to swim in a pool that you had those mental images associated with?

 

But a lot of Johnny’s behavior didn’t make much sense and he knew it.  Johnny had long ago figured out that he should just find a really secure place and hole up and only emerge to get supplies.  Enclosed malls were death traps but the strip malls were relatively easy to get supplies from.    Get on the roof of the strip mall.  Pull up the ladder behind you, do the mobile phone trick and blast the skulls from any number of angles from the roof.  A lot of strip mall formed some version of a giant “U” and that gave you even more angles to shoot the skulls from.  As long as you remembered to pull up the ladder you were totally safe on the roof since the skulls couldn’t climb worth a dam.  Plus if you shot them correctly then they didn’t even know you were on the roof.  A skull might hear your far away shot and look around but if another shot didn’t follow for five seconds or so it would go back to trying to get at the ringing mobile phone.  The skulls were attracted to all sound but were more attracted to rhythmic sounds.  Johnny figured it was some sort of vestigial heartbeat thing and yes Johnny did know what vestigial meant.

 

Why didn’t Johnny just hole up?  Why bother killing the skulls” he though.  Johnny had come up with a whole pseudo-Catholic thing about fighting the of Hell since this is obviously what the skulls were but he knew this was nonsense that he had come up with for the imaginary CNN interview.  Well there was no longer any CNN or any TV except for the lame emergency broadcasting that gave do’s and don’ts for handling skulls except in the broadcast they were called reanimateds in the broadcast.  He would have told his buds something closer to the truth.  Killing the skulls was about payback. The skulls had killed his mom, dad, cousins, uncles aunts, friends and heck everyone and he was getting them the revenge they couldn’t. 

 

And then there was the truth, the truth he barely admitted to himself even.  Killing skulls was the only thing that kept him sane.  Once you got past the shock, the disgust and the terror and the rest, the boredom and meaninglessness of it all set in and that in turn could drive you nuts.  Johnny had to consciously fight a tendency to talk to himself.  He was bored, bored, bored.  Johnny had learned a truth very few teenagers had or ever would.  All the videogames, DVDs, toys and snacks were boring if you had no one to share them with.  Johnny had even considered drugs to relieve the boredom.  Johnny had run into drug stashes in some of the houses he had rifled for supplies and been tempted.  All and all Johnny had been a good kid.  Been drunk a few times smoked a joint once or twice but all in all been straight and sober.  The stashes had been tempting.  Bo no being stoned would make him sloppy.  Sloppy would make him dead.  Besides Johnny increasingly suspected he was going nuts and he had seen enough druggies in highschool to know drugs didn’t help sanity at all.

 

Johnny had so far resisted the temptation to talk aloud.  This could attract the occasional stray skull that would invariably wander into an area he cleared out.    But Johnny did have conversations in his head with his friends.  The mental conversations were getting more frequent and more real.  This was bad.  While he ws blowing out the brains of skulls or planning to blow out the brains of skulls, Johnny wasn’t lonely or bored.  But even blowing out the brains of skulls wasn’t working lately.

 

Lately he had been having more and more conversations with Bianca by his side.  Bianca had been his girlfriend in high school.  She had long thick black wavy hair.  Her skin was chocolate brown.  She had been fifteen, a year younger than himself, when the skulls had shown up.  Even at fifteen she had the beginnings of  a Jennifer Lopez figure and you just knew she was going to grow up to be one hot gal.  Bianca hated her figure and always complained about her butt being too big.  As far as Johnny was concerned that was one of her best features but knew arguing with her about this was hopeless.  Bianacas eyes weren’t so much brown but black and only with effort could you tell were the pupil ended.  Bianca always closed her eyes when he kissed her.  Bianca had been very ticklish and if he kissed her on the neck he to be super “suavecito” or she would giggle.  So gentlemean and smart guy that he was he learned to kiss her neck softly.  She knew ho to dress her sexy not sluttish.  Tight but not too tight.  Short but not too short.  Johnny had met her in the Anglo high school and was surprised to see her.  Dad was a lawyer and mom was a nurse.  She had an A-minus average and had helped Johnny with his classes.  The nuns had drummed a lot of stuff into his head and he quickly figured out more stuff than a lot of his new classmates but they were better at discussion and especially discussion that went all over the place. Bianca had intimidated Johnny at first but she was proud of being Mexican American and made him feel if she could make it at this high school then he could.

 

Bianca had wanted to be an MD when she grew and when his mom heard that she had crossed the living room and given Bianca a big hug.  Bianca’s mom worked at a hospital near his mom’s in the medical center and they sometimes car pooled.  They were one of a very few Hispanic households in the neighborhood and the two families started to gravitate towards each other due to an interest in common foods for barbecue and most of all common music. 

 

Johnny’s mom had wanted to be a nurse but being pregnant with him at eighteen had put a stop to that plan.  Two younger sisters in quick succession later and the mom was still a Catholic but a Catholic that fervently believed in the pill and family planning.  Because of her own experience, his mom had ingrained a deep fear of unwanted pregnancy into her oldest son.  Johnny hadn’t exactly turned down going all the way down with Bianca but on the other hand he hadn’t exactly pursued that option.  Bianca on her part was ambivalent.  All her girlfriends had become “women” and she was curious but like many young ambitious Latinas she too had a deep fear of unwanted pregnancy and was kind of glad to have a boyfriend who didn’t pressure her.  Johnny often literally banged his head against the wall and wished he had dragged Bianca down to family planning and got her on the pill and had sex with her often.  “I am going to die a virgin and that really sucks”, through Johnny.  Johnny often pretended Bianca was far away and they would get together and have lots and lots of babies.  Johnny had wanted to be an architect.  Bianca had wanted to be a doctor.  That was all so far away.  Johnny just wanted to be a daddy and bring life into a world over run by the dead.

 

Bianca had been bitten.  Over  a 24 year hour period she got sicker and sicker. The emergency broadcast point out “Don’t try to cure and infected loved one”.  Very few people listened to this advice in the early days.  The broadcast also stated “Do euthanize the loved one for their own good”.  Bianca had sat back in the large Lazy Boy his dad watched TV on and begged him, weakly, to shoot her.  He had pressed the rifle against her forehead and complied.  Johnny hadn’t really been the same after that.  What worried Johnny was that if he kind of half closed his eyes and kind looked over his shoulder just right he could kind of see Bianca smiling.  Johnny knew he shouldn’t let his mind go in that direction but her smile filled him with a peace and sense of contentment.

 

Suddenly the wall across from him exploded.  Johnny reached for his 45 but it was too late.  Something hit him on the neck and he took out a dart and was out immediately.  The men climbed the rope ladder back up a Good Year blimp they had confiscated long ago that was floating over the house Johnny had been him.  The blimp was totally silent and did not attract the attention of zombies or Johnny.

 

Johnny awoke on an Army cot and immediately remembered the exploding wall and dart.  Pretty quickly he figured out that this was some sort of military operation.  He checked his body for injuries and found none but did find a metal collar around his neck that could not be removed and thoughts of slavery crossed his mind.  About a hour after waking up a tall thin man with a reddish face, cropped hair and steely gray eyes opened the door and introduced himself as Lietenant Green.  Green asked Johnny if he would like a soda and Johnny joked that he would like a beer.  Lieutenant Green responded, “You are seventeen and underage”.  Johnny realized at that exact second that Green was not going to be any fun at all.  Johnny asked about the collar. The collar prevents you from becoming a active ream..  The collar monitors your heartbeat via your jugular vein.  When your heartbeat stops a silent signal is sent to EMS.  If a code is not entered in within 20 hours then the collar blows up and severs your head from your body.  If you have become a ream you are pretty harmless minus a body.  We are working on an implant that will be put in the brain and blow out the brain itself in 20 hours minus an electronic beam from EMS.  “Cool” though Johnny.  Green handed Johnny an envelope.  These are your induction papers.  Johnny was pretty sure he knew what induction meant in this context but wanted to make sure,. 

“I’ve been drafted?” said Johnny. 

Yes, replied Green. 

I thought I was too young too drink beer.

You are too young too drink beer but not too young to hunt zombies.  Johnny winced a little when he heard the “z” word.

 

Johnny’s combat training began the next day.  Johnny’s dad had been a gun collector and had taken him to the shooting range every Saturday afternoon as far back as Johnny could remember.  Johnny’s dad had also been a deer hunter growing up in West Texas and would have exposed Johnny to this sport except the sport had become a rich man’s hobby since his dad had been a teenager or at least that’s what his dad said.  They had only gone hunting a few times and not bagged anything but Johnny felt that he had learned some skills that had kept him alive to the present.  The big one was to think like your prey and come up with a plan. 

 

Red his instructor wasn’t going to waste time teaching Johnny what he already knew and after testing his proficiency with a pistol and rifle moved on to the use of a submachine gun, grenades and RPGs.  Hand to hand combat was designed strictly with zombies in mind.  Johnny was taught how to bust a skull with a hammer, machete, bottle, ash tray, edge of a wall, straight slam to the ground and fifty other ways as well.  Johnny had never considered all the ways there were to bust up a skull.  Coconuts attached to poles, attached to crash dummy bodies, attached to martial arts dummies and suspended from string were the main practice target.  Red preferred blunt objects like sticks and hammers since they didn’t get stuck like bladed weapons.  Bladed weapons like machetes and swords were also used to sever the neck rather than hit the skull.  Cutting of the limbs was also practiced.  Skulls would often grab you out of nowhere. 

 

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