Barney knew something was off.
There was this feeling in his bones, a deep buzzing that left his skin crawling. He tapped his earpiece, the small earbuds emitting nothing but static. Freddy, Simon, and Carly were nowhere to be seen, much to his dismay. Stalking through the tall grass, crouched so it shielded him from view, he pulled out his cell and checked the messages.
The last was from Sammy: ‘We’re on our way.’
That had been a little over two hours ago. He parted the grass, peering through the long stalks of vegetation, and eyed the swaying, still figures up the road. His skin crawled. It was moments like this one when he realized he really should have focused on what was around him before running blinding into an unknown situation.
After three hours, the zombies still haven’t moved. One of them was Arnold.
‘Why did I follow him, anyway?’ Barney scratched the side of his chin, the stubble tickling his fingers as he eyed the man missing half his head. Being half-dead really hadn’t helped the man, either. Barney frowned. ‘It’s not like he’s all that interesting. Why did I stalk that deadbeat for three months? Was it the food? No, it was the watch.’
From where he was at, Barney could see the silver gleam of the watch. He focused on that small piece of glowing, holy light. He eyed the other undead creatures as he crawled a tad closer, his eyes narrowed as he looked at his surroundings. He pursed his lips, not sure if the risk was worth it. His gaze flickered back to his phone.
His battery was almost dead. ‘Well, that makes this easier.’
Barney slowly rose from his hiding place, each vertebra of his spine popping as he rolled his back into an upright position. He cracked his neck, stepping forward with a grace of a predator. In front of him, Deadbeat seemed to pick up on a change. A low, hissing groan filled the air. Twitching, Deadbeat’s body slowly turned with one, clawed hand reaching.
When Deadbeat saw who was coming, the hiss stopped.
Dead eyes widened. Deadbeat shuffled back two steps, hands coming up in a ‘don’t come any closer’ gesture. That silver watch clinked and glowed, a divine light that begged for the attention of a proper being who could see its true, hidden worth. Barney grinned.
The zombie screamed.
Then it ran.