Onlookers, by Rebecca Gomezrueda

They had started screaming at six hours and twenty-eight minutes in. Frank ticked a mark off on his notepad and relayed the message into a compact black tape recorder. “Molly?” He said into his microphone. A girl on his screen tapped her communicator into life as he set up her feed. “What’s going on? Talk to me.” The girl raised the small lens up to her eyes and spun a full rotation around the sterile room to showcase the carrying-ons of each subject. Frank’s stomach jumped in nausea as the view on his screen spun. “So that’s Subject I and D screaming then? And can you not spin your camera like that? I was about to throw up.”

“I think they’re about to bite each other’s eyes out.” Molly grumbled. “I still can’t believe they’re making me do this.”

“The experiment you mean?”

“No.” Molly swung her fist at a subject who had lurched towards her. “Putting me in here. It’s disgusting. I’ll be the one who ends up losing their mind. I wanted to be placed in the equestrian branch, but no, there’s no work there ever since we got rid of the pegasi, zombies is where it’s at now. I hate everything.”

Frank turned away from the monitors to hide a smirk. “Hey, you only have two hours left, and then you can have the greatest celebratory feast in history.”

“Ugh. Don’t say feast right now, I’m begging you.” She flicked her fingers towards the corner where Subject F was biting a chunk out of Subject J’s thigh. Molly shook her head. “Two hours.” She forced the grimace off her face and blew a kiss into the screen. “See you then.”

Frank cut off her feed with a smile and began to brainstorm places to take her for dinner when a sound like a bell cut through his dreamy thoughts. “Franklin Chapin here.” He said into his earpiece.

“Can Molly hear us right now?”

He gave all his devices a second look. “Not at all. I cut off her feed a moment ago. What do you need?”

“Don’t let her out of that room.” Said a voice from the other end of the line. Frank fixed his eyes on his display and found that little had changed.

“Who is this? What’s the reason for this? I can assure you that she is being properly monitored. The experiment is going as planned.”

“It’s Mr. White from tech. I’m in charge of modifying all the feeds so that they’re available in several different formats. I was looking at Molly’s just a moment ago. You can’t let her out of that room.”

Annoyed and defensive, Frank nearly dropped the call. “I don’t have time for this. There’s no issue here.”

“You missed the fresh bite mark on her calf then?”


Rebecca Gomezrueda is a high school student from Pennsylvania whose work has also been published in The Surreal Grotesque, The Apprentice Writer, and The Camel Saloon.

Posted on December 24, 2013, in Issue 11: The Day Zombies Ruled the Earth and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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