Holding onto a Memory

Holding on by a Memory

My name is, or was when I was human, Halley. I am young, for a zombie, yet I’ve spent too many years this way. Eating brains to survive. Decomposing. So hideous no one will love me. I feel as if I am evil, disgust, repulsion and whatever else comes with the thoughts of zombies.

One night, about two weeks ago, I stumbled across this young woman, in my hellish part of town. She was going to be my next meal, something to sustain me. My survival.

She was unexplainably untouchable. I could get with a one yard radius of her body.

I got angry and sad. I Screamed. Maggots crawled where tears would normally fall. I wanted to talk to her. Tell her I didn’t want to feed on her but I need to live, if this is truly living. She’d never understand me, all that comes out is a garbled noise of nonsense.

She somehow saw through my exterior. Discovered I do not want to live this way. I cannot let go of my humanity and act like the monster I was created to be.  I still am unsure how she saw that my soul was still intact.

Her face softened. She waved her hand and walked close to me. “I am Aibelle. I see you. Who you used to be. The pain in your scream grabbed my heart. I want to help you.” She then revealed she was a Witch. “I used a spell to delve into your mind, I found your soul. And I know for you to keep your soul, you require memories.”

We make an unlikely pair. An unorthodox friendship. I told her, through the link she created, I was slipping away. I could not hold onto my memories and they are what kept me from slipping into the hell I was destined to live. I hid in shadows and fed rarely. Often, I fed on rodents and other animals. I am sure there are many children who are missing their favorite pet, but the lost pet is better than their deaths.

She studied her books. She calls them Books of Shadows. She doesn’t explain much to me. She is looking for a way to help me. To keep my memories, or use those of others, and not lose the grip on my soul.

I know killing humans will be a necessity for me to stay “alive.” The thought tugs at my soul, making me sad, but because I am slipping, I crave more and more brains and flesh.

She finds me crouched in the alley behind her house.

“I have it. I separated it into single doses. If it works, leave me a message, a sign. I will make more and leave it for you. Just, please, leave my family alone.”

I nod my thanks. I put out my hand and she places the case containing 21 small vials inside onto it. She doesn’t cringe at the sight of my skin hanging off the bones, the sound of maggots trying to devour the rest of my meat, or the rancid smell drifting from my body.

My boney fingers curl around the case, I glance back at her through my sinking eyes. We both turn and go our separate ways.

I go to my home in the sewers. It masks my smell well. There are others like me here ,but they tend to leave me alone.

I find the loose brick in the corner of my area. Before put the case in the muddy soil underneath I open it and get one vial of the blue potion. I close the lid, set the case in the hole, snug in the soil, and put the brick back in place.

I hold the vial between two boney fingers. A piece of flesh sticks to one side. I groan my disappointment, but still open the vial and down the blue liquid. It tasted like minty mouthwash.

I feel no different. What did I expect to feel? Anything? I leave my sewer for one of the stopping grounds I frequent. It is a place some of the less loved citizens of our city hang out, sleep, grope each other, and other nastiness. I think of what I do as ridding the city of pests before the pests do harm.

I see a handsome young man sitting under a fire escape, alone. He has shaggy blonde hair. He fidgets with a device in his hands. He is new here. I shake my head. He would be the kind I would like, if I were… human again. I can’t take him.

I walk in the shadows a little further. And older man, maybe mid-thirties. He is sleeping beside one of the large business type dumpsters. He will do. He is ragged. His clothing tattered. I walk up to him, I still feel no different. I crouch and find the base of his skull. The bone in the tip of my right forefinger is exposed, I use it for this purpose. My strength allows me to jab it just right and sever the spinal column from the brain. He feels no pain. Then I smash his head in with my hands put together in a giant fist. It sounded like a melon being thrown onto the ground. I shivered. I couldn’t help it. I needed this, but still hated it.

I reached my hand down and found the grey matter. It squished through my decaying fingers. Drooling uncontrollably, I brought it to my mouth. My tongue snaked out and tasted the lusciousness. It was like having chocolate for the first time. I swallowed the brains without chewing. My body jolted. Visions of walking through a park as a teen boy came into my mind, robbing a store to get something to eat, visions of his life. It worked. I can keep my soul.

Maggots fell down my cheeks in place of tears. I won’t lose myself.



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